Antec P280: Performance One Refresh

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Test Results: 2 x ATI Radeon HD 4870 (CrossFireX)


2 x HD 4870 CrossFireX test system.

System Measurements
System State
Idle
CPU + GPU Load
System Fan Speeds
Low
Low
High
CPU Temp
32°C
45°C
42°C
SB Temp
55°C
64°C
62°C
HD Temp
28°C
28°C
28°C
GPU #1 Temp
78°C
89°C
88°C
GPU #1 Fan
Speed
1130 RPM
2440 RPM
2440 RPM
GPU #2 Temp
71°C
84°C
83°C
GPU #2 Speed
1010 RPM
1950 RPM
1920 RPM
SPL@1m
22 dBA
32~33 dBA
34 dBA
System Power
193W
525W
525W
CPU fan set to 100% speed.
Ambient temperature: 22°C.

The presence of a second HD 4870 had little impact on the system when idle, both thermally and acoustically. The main differences were an increased Southbridge temperature (9°C) and the noise level going up a single dB due to the second GPU fan and higher GPU fan speeds. On load, most of the extra heat from the CrossFireX setup was dealt with by the higher fan speeds pushing it out the rear of the case. Neither the CPU or hard drive ran any hotter than in our single HD 4870 configuration, though the Southbridge heated up significantly due to its unfortunate location beside both cards. The noise level jumped to a loud 32~33 dBA@1m, though the acoustic character was still similar, just with more volume and a slightly higher pitch. Cranking up the stock fans to high delivered marginally better cooling that wasn't worth the +1~2 dBA cost in noise.



Our HD 4870 CrossFireX test system measured 22 dBA@1m when idle and 32~33 dBA@1m on load.

CrossFireX Configuration Comparison (Load)
Case
In Win Dragon Rider
In Win BUC
Antec P280
LanCool PC-K59
Fans Speeds
top, rear, sides @9V, front @5V
top, rear, front @9V
top, rear, front @low
top, rear, front @9V
CPU Temp
35°C
46°C
45°C
46°C
SB Temp
46°C
63°C
64°C
63°C
HD Temp
31°C
30°C
28°C
28°C
GPU #1 Temp
85°C
89°C
89°C
89°C
GPU #1 Fan
Speed
1890 RPM
2050 RPM
2440 RPM
2300 RPM
GPU #2 Temp
82°C
85°C
84°C
83°C
GPU #2 Fan
Speed
1680 RPM
1780 RPM
1950 RPM
1810 RPM
SPL@1m
32 dBA
32~33 dBA
32~33 dBA
33 dBA
CPU fan set to 100% speed.
All temperature results adjusted to 22°C ambient.

Even without the extra side panel vent of enthusiast style cases like the In Win Dragon Rider and BUC, the P280 still managed to hold its own, producing temperatures comparable to the BUC. We saw lower GPU fan speeds with the BUC so it was better cooled, yet the P280 was no worse in the noise department. The lack of a side panel vent made for a hotter environment for the GPUs, but more of the noise was muffled.



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