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PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2008 10:40 pm 
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Blue wrote:
The Fusion Remote Max is actually part of Antec's Veris case series, which are marketed as media cases and not gaming cases.

I was talking about actual facts. IMHO quoting marketing material only distracts from the facts. ;)

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:17 am 
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The review doesn't showcase a super silent typical SPCR-minimalist HTPC system. Would the case be very quiet with such a system? Yes, much like the original Fusion, which needed to be tweaked for lowest noise despite its nice features and design. Is a minimalist HTPC intended for this case? Not really.

The ability to install 2 full length (>10") video cards with an intake fan right where it will do the most good for cooling those cards is probably the most unique -- and maybe defining -- aspect of this case.

Here's why I think super silent HTPCs are not a necessity for most users, even at SPCR.

1) Sleep mode. It makes a PC perfectly silent yet awakens quickly by many different ways. Even automatically to record programming at a specific time (at least my most sophisticated HTPC-using friend tells me).

2) As long as the noise is broadband, the HDD softmounted, and the overall SPL is not much above 25 dBA/1m, I have no problems listening to music or watching video with the PC 4-5' away.

For it to be enjoyable -- no, listenable! -- music has to produce at least 50 dBA peaks 1m from the speakers. That's a fairly simple fact for me. I've measured, I've listened. That's my opinion. In general, this means music will drown out a ~30 dBA/1m PC.

With TV and movies, it's really not possible to hear the >30 dBA/1m my hi-def PVR is producing constantly these days. There's something wrong with it -- maybe the intake is clogged with dust -- but I just haven't had the time, energy or inclination to take it apart and see. It bugs me like crazy when the TV is off, but as soon as it's turned on, the PVR noise is irrelevant. Really. Can't hear it and doesn't bother me -- or anyone else in the room -- with the sound coming from the speakers. I've said this before -- the absolute minimum level you need for good intelligibility of dialogue is >30 dBA/1m. Actually I suspect it's higher. The peaks need to be much higher -- like 45 dBA.

So going back to my acoustic standards for a HTPC, they are based on both empirical and subjective research...

...and the assumption that people will not be that near the machine when it is on. In my home, we have a small dedicated TV room and the only time we're in there is when the TV is on, and a htpc is positioned at least 6' away from the viewers. In contrast, with desktop PCs, I am within 2-3 feet of them whenever I work on them, sometimes closer (if they're really on the desk).

There will always be exceptions. Maybe you sit way closer with a smaller TV or have much better hearing or a much quieter room or like to keep it on all the time and sleep a couple feet away from it, or.....

This is also true of desktop PCs. Some people want it to be quieter than I need... and that's OK.

But surely, there's enough information in the review for anyone interested in using the FRM as a high end non-gaming HTPC to make it very quiet, and to know what challenges they will face in achieving this (and you know, challenges are always there for anyone who wants extremely low noise).

At some point in the future, when I come across a free stretch of time, I might assemble a silent htpc in this case and do a postscript... on the other hand, I'm sure some forum members will do this soon enough.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 1:08 am 
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Thanks again for a great review Mike, but i still havent got any answer on my question :)

Is it possible to install a Graphic card with the Accelero S1 cooler mounted??

If its possible then I've found the HTPC chassie for me in the right pricerange.

Many thanks

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 7:53 am 
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Neqrom wrote:
Thanks again for a great review Mike, but i still havent got any answer on my question :)

Is it possible to install a Graphic card with the Accelero S1 cooler mounted??

If its possible then I've found the HTPC chassie for me in the right pricerange.

Many thanks

Yes, it should be no problem at all. The thing is as tall as a P182 is wide, and allows almost the entire length for the video card..

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:31 am 
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MikeC wrote:
The review doesn't showcase a super silent typical SPCR-minimalist HTPC system...

The ability to install 2 full length (>10") video cards with an intake fan right where it will do the most good for cooling those cards is probably the most unique -- and maybe defining -- aspect of this case.

Part of the problem is that the case is mislabeled as an HTPC case while it is really a high end gaming case - which can also be used as an HTPC (or whatever other sort of PC).
Quote:
Here's why I think super silent HTPCs are not a necessity for most users, even at SPCR...

For it to be enjoyable -- no, listenable! -- music has to produce at least 50 dBA peaks 1m from the speakers. That's a fairly simple fact for me. I've measured, I've listened. That's my opinion. In general, this means music will drown out a ~30 dBA/1m PC.

Yes the peaks will drown out the noise but not the quieter sections or the silences that you get in both music and film. I think dynamic range is less for other types of music but if you have 70dba peaks for orchestral music then softer sections might be 30dba and that's not to mention silences.
Quote:
I've said this before -- the absolute minimum level you need for good intelligibility of dialogue is >30 dBA/1m.

Even in movies there's a lot of important audio at a lower level than would be necessary for intelligible dialogue. The ambience of a scene (are there leaves? is it a chapel? outdoors?) is often given by sound below this level.
Quote:
In contrast, with desktop PCs, I am within 2-3 feet of them whenever I work on them, sometimes closer (if they're really on the desk).

At the same time the typical desktop PC is less likely to be an audio(/video) setup than an HTPC.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:53 am 
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croddie wrote:
mikec wrote:
For it to be enjoyable -- no, listenable! -- music has to produce at least 50 dBA peaks 1m from the speakers. That's a fairly simple fact for me. I've measured, I've listened. That's my opinion. In general, this means music will drown out a ~30 dBA/1m PC.

Yes the peaks will drown out the noise but not the quieter sections or the silences that you get in both music and film. I think dynamic range is less for other types of music but if you have 70dba peaks for orchestral music then softer sections might be 30dba and that's not to mention silences.

This might be true of orchestral, but I rarely play classical any more, and never in the TV room. Whether a broadband 25 dBA/1m PC would intrude in the music with 30 dBA quiet parts probably depends on the focus or attention of the listener.

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Even in movies there's a lot of important audio at a lower level than would be necessary for intelligible dialogue. The ambience of a scene (are there leaves? is it a chapel? outdoors?) is often given by sound below this level.

That's not been my experience. I just don't hear the noisy PVR even in the quiet parts of any movies I've watched in that room the last 2 years. I never have any problem hearing the ambient projected by the speakers -- even if just from the TV speakers. Again, I think it is as much about the degree of attention one gives to the movie as sheer audibility. Sure, if I was listening for the machine, I'd probably hear it when there is a dramatic silent pause, but I'm focused on the movie, not the noise.

Quote:
At the same time the typical desktop PC is less likely to be an audio(/video) setup than an HTPC.

-- and the very absence of program material from the speakers makes the nearby desktop pc that much more audible -- which is why I think they need to be quieter.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 10:05 am 
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MikeC wrote:
That's not been my experience. I just don't hear the noisy PVR even in the quiet parts of any movies I've watched in that room the last 2 years. I never have any problem hearing the ambient projected by the speakers -- even if just from the TV speakers. Again, I think it is as much about the degree of attention one gives to the movie as sheer audibility. Sure, if I was listening for the machine, I'd probably hear it when there is a dramatic silent pause, but I'm focused on the movie, not the noise.
Isn't our brain wonderful? This is the perfect example of the "cocktail party problem" - Anthony Zador does research on it.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 4:14 pm 
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Cistron wrote:
MikeC wrote:
That's not been my experience. I just don't hear the noisy PVR even in the quiet parts of any movies I've watched in that room the last 2 years. I never have any problem hearing the ambient projected by the speakers -- even if just from the TV speakers. Again, I think it is as much about the degree of attention one gives to the movie as sheer audibility. Sure, if I was listening for the machine, I'd probably hear it when there is a dramatic silent pause, but I'm focused on the movie, not the noise.
Isn't our brain wonderful? This is the perfect example of the "cocktail party problem" - Anthony Zador does research on it.

You're correct, but "cocktail party" isn't the only thing at play -- frequency is also a factor. The noisy thing in PVR is the HDD and in my experience these HDD produce obnoxious sounds, but at relatively high frequency. Now, one of the things about wave propagation is that higher frequencies propagate exponentially worse than lower frequencies. I find even in a very quiet room, the PVR that is obnoxiously loud at 1m is quiet at 2m and nearly inaudible at 3m.

Going back to your original point though, how unpleasant the tone of a sound is often far more important than its intensity. I had a DVD player that made a squealing sound as it played disks. It wasn't that loud to begin with and it was fairly high pitched, yet I could easily hear it from 3-4m away! And once I would notice it, I just couldn't tune it out no matter what. I could hear it over much louder music. This is really a point that can't be made too many times. A silent PC (or other device) is about the nature of the sounds produced more so than just raw dB levels.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 4:27 pm 
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jessekopelman wrote:
A silent PC (or other device) is about the nature of the sounds produced more so than just raw dB levels.

...and in the context of TV, movies or music at normal volumes, a 25~30 dBA/1m mostly broadband PC is, in fact, a silent PC.

Before you leap at the keyboard to register your counter, I'm the first to agree that when the TV or music goes off but the PC noise remains, this same PC may not be quiet. Which is why I don't have a TV (or computer) in my living room or bedroom -- it's isolated in its own little room. (Far too intrusive / antisocial to have a TV in the LR anyway!) If that PVR was anywhere else, it would never stay plugged in except when in use, and that would make the PVR functionality quite poor (ie, no programmed auto-recording).

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 Post subject: Been through several
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 2:12 am 
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Recently bought and returned several of these, all suffered an LCD that was so bright that the display was distored and pink.

After the 6th one I gave up. Antec refuse to respond to emails about it.

I guess that's what happens when you review samples provided by the manufacturer. Retail boxes are not as high quality so the review is effectively meaningless.

Avoid the Fusion Max, the display is so bright and distracting on store bought cases that you can't put it under a TV and watch a film without it being annoying.

The extremely poor LCD on retail/store bought versions makes this case entirely unsuitable as a HTPC.


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