Silverstone Fortress FT03 microATX Tower

Cases|Damping
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TEST RESULTS: Radeon HD 5450

Our first test configuration features a low power passively cooled graphics card, a Radeon HD 5450. Our test configuration only gives us temperature data on the CPU and hard drive(s), so the HD 5450 gives us an extra data point from a different location within the case.


Our test system with a Radeon HD 5450.


System Measurements (Radeon HD 5450)
System State
Idle
CPU + GPU Load
System Fan Speeds
off
5V
CPU Temp
26°C
74°C
61°C
HD Temp
31°C
36°C
36°C
GPU Temp
45°C
83°C
69°C
SPL@1m
17 dBA
18 dBA
20 dBA
System Power
48W
154W
150W
CPU fan set to 9V.
Ambient temperature: 22°C.

With no forced airflow other than the CPU cooler fan, the system struggled thermally. On load, the processor and graphics card heated up by almost 50°C and 40°C, respectively, compared to idle. Running the system fans at even 5V helped considerably with a 13~14°C improvement for the CPU and GPU. This added 2 dB to the overall noise level, but it was still fairly quiet.


Our HD 5450 test system on load measured 20 dBA@1m with the CPU fan set to 9V and the system fans running at 5V.

The system sounded fairly smooth with almost no air turbulence and just a slight hum caused mainly by the vibrations of the hard drive.

HD 5450 Configuration Comparison (Load)
Case
Silverstone Fortress FT03
Lian Li PC-V354
System Fan Speeds
5V
6V
CPU Temp
61°C
56°C
HD Temp
36°C
28°C
GPU Temp
69°C
65°C
SPL@1m
20 dBA
18 dBA
System Power
150W
157W
CPU fan set to 9V.
Ambient temperature: 22°C
(results adjusted accordingly)
PC-V354 equipped with a Cooler Master M700 power supply, FT03 with a Seasonic X-650.

In this configuration the FT03 doesn't compare favorably to the last microATX case we reviewed, the Lian Li PC-V354. The PC-V354 with its fans at 6V gave us better temperatures and a lower noise level. It should be noted that the FT03 had the advantage of a quieter, more efficient power supply, the 80 Plus Gold rated Seasonic X-650 rather than the Cooler Master Silent Pro M700 we usually use for mATX/ATX case testing.

Though a much larger case by volume, the FT03 isn't as well ventilated as the PC-V354, nor does it have direct airflow for hard drive cooling. The noise difference was likely caused by vibrations generated by the hard drive, which doesn't have a hard drive cage to steady it. Vibration was an issue with the Lian Li case as well, but the problem was less audible.



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