Cooler Master Silencio 450: Silence on a Budget?

Cases|Damping
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Test Results: Radeon HD 4870

System Measurements (HD 4870)
System State
Idle
CPU + GPU Load
System Fan
7V
9V
12V
CPU Temp
34°C
55°C
54°C
51°C
SB Temp
49°C
59°C
58°C
58°C
HD Temp
31°C
31°C
31°C
30°C
GPU Temp
77°C
87°C
86°C
86°C
GPU Fan
900 RPM
2050 RPM
2030 RPM
1980 RPM
SPL@1m
21 dBA
27 dBA
27 dBA
29 dBA
CPU fan set to 100% speed.
Ambient temperature: 22°C.

Adding an HD 4870 created a more challenging configuration for the Silencio 450. Relatively cool and quiet when idle, full load brought the CPU and Southbridge temperatures into the mid to high 50's and the GPU fan spun up to 2050 RPM, keeping the GPU core at 87°C. Increasing the system fan's speed to 9V had a minor effect on the components, improving the CPU, Southbridge and GPU temperatures by a hair, and allowing the HD 4870 fan to slow down slightly. The overall noise level was 27 dBA@1m whether the system fans were set to 7V or 9V. Running the fans at full speed generated further gains, but the extra noise going from 27 dBA to 29 dBA wasn't worth it.


Our HD 4870 test system measured 27 dBA@1m on load with the system fans at 9V.

The HD 4870 stock cooler produces a noticeable but soft hissing noise that would be considered inoffensive by many, so while the system was 6 dB louder than the integrated graphics configuration, the noise level wasn't too unpleasant.

HD 4870 Configuration Comparison (Load)
Case
CM Silencio 450
Antec Solo II
CM Silencio 550
NZXT H2
System Fans
rear, front @9V
rear, front @12V*
rear, front @12V
rear, fronts @med
CPU Temp
54°C
45°C
57°C
53°C
SB Temp
58°C
47°C
56°C
52°C
HD Temp
31°C
34°C
31°C
33°C
GPU Temp
86°C
82°C
88°C
87°C
GPU Fan
Speed
2030 RPM
1880 RPM
2330 RPM
2110 RPM
SPL@1m
27 dBA
27~28 dBA
27~28 dBA
28 dBA
CPU fan set to 100% speed
All temperature results adjusted to 22°C ambient.
*Nexus 120 mm fan added as bottom intake.

Housing our HD 4870 configuration, the Silencio 450 cooled slightly better than the Silencio 550, probably due to its higher speed fans. Against a more formidable foe in the Solo II, the Silencio 450 manages to be a tad quieter, but with much higher temperatures.



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