it looks to me like that is there to stop cables from getting caught in the CPU fan.. personally I would rather see zip ties keep the cables in place, but I doubt he is really overheating his CPU by doing that..
The plastic tube on the CPU cooler normally is used with a case that has holes on the side. The tube directs cooler air from outside of the case directly into the CPU. Modern computers put off so little heat you really don't have to worry about airflow in the case like you used to. Obviously, overclocking is another story.
Lots of people put together completely fanless systems by picking low power parts and doing things like undervolting the CPU.
The plastic tube on the CPU cooler normally is used with a case that has holes on the side. .
That's exactly what it is and not the first time I've seen a similar set up.
I've never asked any clients how they landed up with PC's set up that way, but always figured they just changed the case at one point, and that the previous one had air holes on the side that lined up perfectly to that shroud.
Unless that fellow is overclocking the heck out of his machine, he has ample cooling with that set up.
As soon as that fan spins, air starts to circulate. When a fan blows out, air is sucked in, and vice versa.
Some of the cases sold around here, have those shrouds attached onto the removable panel and when they don't line up properly, we just remove them.
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