As the Silent PC movement becomes more mainstream, several companies have
introduced noise damping kits for computers. The kits
generally have pre-applied adhesive on the back of damping foam, some with precut
sections designed to fit a specific model of case,
some with special foam panels designed to not only reduce absorb
sound waves but to reduce case vibrations as well.
In a previous review
of case damping materials at SilentPCReview, the AcoustiPack damping
kit blew the other three contenders out of the water, so I've been keeping my
eyes on AcoustiProducts damping kits, in case something interesting
popped up. While I was browsing the AcoustiProducts website recently, I noticed a new case to their lineup called the
C6607". On first glance, this case looked identical to the good 'ol
Antec SLK3700AMB/Compucase 6A19 that I'm so familiar with and as I looked at
it closer it was apparent that it was indeed a clone of the 6A19.
bright lad that my mom says I am, I figured that if the precut damping material
fits the AcoustiCase C6607 would probably work perfectly in
one of my Antec SLK3700AMB cases. I contacted AcoustiProducts to see if they were selling,
or had plans to sell the kits separately from the case. The
case was brand new for them, and that they hadn't really thought about selling the damping kit separately. I suggested that they should consider selling the
damping kits separately as the SLK3700/6A19 is a quite popular case and that
they'd have a nice little market.
They kindly agreed to send me a sample of the AcoustiPack damping kit for
the C6607 to see how well it worked in an Antec SLK3700AMB. A short time
later, the friendly UPS man dropped off a heavy white box on my front step emblazoned
with the AcoustiPack logo on the front.
A box full of foam that feels more like
a box full of bricks. This stuff is heavy!
Upon opening the box I was presented with a neatly packed plastic bag full
of acoustic foam blocks and acoustic composite panels, along with an illustrated
instruction sheet that shows where to mount each individual foam panel and
block that is included with the AcoustiPack kit. The C6607 kit is sort
of a blend of the
Standard and the
Deluxe kits. It comes with five of the Acoustic Composite sheets - each 7mm thick
(2mm Acoustic Barrier Mass and 5mm Acoustic Foam) that are precut to the correct
size, and designed to be attached using their self-adhesive back, to the top,
bottom, rear wall and both side walls of the case.
The kit includes six
acoustic foam blocks that are precut to fit into the unused space in the various
drive bays. There are five smaller self-adhesive 7mm thick composite sheets
that are precut to fit behind any unused drive bay and floppy drive covers to
absorb noise and vibration before it comes out the front of the case. There's
also a precut section of air filter that won't fit into the differently shaped
air filter of the SLK3700 but does look like it would fit into a 6A19 perfectly.
The first time I opened the plastic bag I noticed a slight rubbery odor which
vanished after the panels were left out of the plastic bag overnight.
into great detail about the composition of their components as well as the
theory behind their implementation. Much of this is also covered in the previous AcousticPack Deluxe review, so I'll summarize by saying that their system is designed to reduce noise and vibration throughout the audible frequency range.
Kit contents. These are the Acoustic Composite sheets
that come with the C6607 kit.
Acoustic Composite door panel, acoustic
foam blocks and air filter insert.
My plan was to install this kit in my SLK3700AMB that already
contained a working system. I wanted to see how easy it would be to install
the kit's self adhesive panels while the hardware was already installed in the
case. I studied the panels and the instructions and determined that I could
install all the panels without having to remove the hardware in my case. I was
From looking at the instructions and the case layout it looked
like the top panel would be the most difficult to install so instead of installing
it first, as the instructions indicated, I chose to install the other composite
panels first to get a little practice with the technique before I tackled
the trickiest one. It was fairly easy to install the adhesive backed panels.
I pre-positioned each piece prior to removing the protective backing of the
adhesive sheets so I could see if there would be any problems with maneuvering
the sheet into position.
I installed each sheet using the technique that they
recommended for the top sheet: Peeled back a small portion of the protective
backing, line up the other portion of the panel and then press the exposed
portion of the panel into place. Only then did I peel back the remainder of
the backing sheet and press the rest of the panel into place. Using this technique
I was able to position each adhesive panel correctly on the first try.
very easy to apply the panels on each of the doors and the rear case wall. The
floor panel was slightly more difficult and the top panel required that I remove
the CD-ROM drive in the uppermost 5.25" drive bay, as well as loosening
the PSU and moving it away from the top of the case to open up enough room to
work the top panel into position. To finish off the self-adhesive acoustic panel
installation I applied the supplied panels to the back sides of the unused drive
bay and floppy bay covers.
Acoustic composite panels on floor, right side door and
front wall, plus foam blocks in 3.5" FDD cage and beneath the HDD tower
Acoustic composite panels on floor and back wall.
Acoustic composite panel on case "ceiling". CD-ROM and PSU had
to be removed to gain access to this area for application.
To finish the installation I inserted the press-fit acoustic foam
blocks into their respective positions. I opted to leave out any blocks that
would interfere with airflow. In my mind the tradeoff of a little
noise reduction for not decreasing the airflow is well worth it. One of the
common concerns about adding foam-based damping materials to a case is whether
it will act as insulation and increase the case temperature so I didn't want
to lose any airflow if I didn't have to.
Acoustic foam blocks in 3.5" bays.
I left several out so as not to block airflow through the case. The extras are
installed in the empty space between the lower drive cage and the right side
wall of the case, safely out of the airflow.
The entire installation took about 30 minutes and would have gone
faster if I was applying the acoustic composite foam to a empty case. As it
was, I had to remove the components near the top of the case to gain enough
access to properly position the top panel. This probably added 10 minutes to
the installation time. All the panels (except the front air filter) fit perfectly
even though they weren't expressly designed for the Antec SLK3700AMB case.
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