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 Post subject: my first quiet pc
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2004 2:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 6:25 pm
Posts: 8
Hi folks,

I just got done putting together my first quiet PC and I'm thrilled by the results! :D My old computer was like a noisy server by comparison. Granted, I'm not a sophisticated PC audiophobe yet, but here are my impressions:

  • Case - Evercase GC4292R
    I really like this case. I don't care about looks (see pics), I just like the low price and great ventilation.
  • Case fans - 2 120mm Nexus case fans.
    Front intake & Rear exhaust. The front of this case is actually designed for 2 80mm fans due to the placement of the front USB/speaker ports. But I had already purchased the fans, so oh well, I mounted the 120 anyways with 1/2" spacers. (Would 2 80mm fans be quieter?) :?:
  • PSU - Seasonic Tornado 300. Awesome! Very quiet; the fan never ramps up on me.
  • Cable wraps - I wanted to mention that using the spiral cable wraps included with the Seasonic (see pics) appeared to lower my temps 1 degree or so, with the caveat being this was a very unscientific test.
  • CPU - Athlon64 3000+, Zalmon 7000 Cu (@5V), cool air duct from side of case (see pics)
    Idle temp: 49 C (CoolnQuiet is disabled)
    Max temp: 62 C
  • GPU - nVidia 6800 (base) with stock cooler (@5V) (eVGA brand)
    Idle temp: 64 C
    Max temp: 71 C
    Using the stock cooler at the standard 12V was unacceptably loud for me, but it was about 10 C cooler at idle. I tried removing the stock blower and using a 80mm Nexus case fan, but I couldn't match the stock performance at 5V. (Incidentally, the Nexus 80mm had a lot of vibration, so I didn't want to use it. The Nexus 120's have none, by comparison. Anyone else noticed this?) I'd like a better cooling solution here at some point - any opinions? :?:
  • HDD - my old Western Digital 60GB, suspended with StretchMagic. NOW that I actually have a quiet PC, I can really hear this HDD. Hard mounted was unacceptably noisy; the suspension mount really improves things. :!: (see pics)

Overall I think my loudest components are the HDD and the GPU, so those will be my future areas to work on. For now, I'm very happy with what I have.
One interesting note on airflow: I removed the 2 PCI-slot covers adjacent to the GPU, and kept the stock case blowhole (see pics) unplugged, and found air is actually being sucked into the case from both positions. Opinions on what to make of this are welcome. :?:

Lastly, pictures:
http://www.pbase.com/image/32287857/large


Last edited by shooter_san on Sun Aug 08, 2004 3:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: my first quiet pc
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2004 3:46 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2004 11:10 pm
Posts: 657
Location: AB, Canada
shooter_san wrote:
One interesting note on airflow: I removed the 2 PCI-slot covers adjacent to the GPU, and kept the stock case blowhole (see pics) unplugged, and found air is actually being sucked into the case from both positions. Opinions on what to make of this are welcome. :?:


just means your PSU fan and 120mm exhaust are pushing out more air than your 120mm intake is bringing in. not a big deal considering how many people here don't need/bother with an intake fan at all; if you want that intake to work better, though, you could cut a hole for it in the front of the case (if it's just sitting behind two 80mm grills right now, kinda hard to see).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 8:09 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2004 8:48 am
Posts: 17
Location: Vienna
looks nice,

did the cpu duct come with the case?

about the case fans, 120mm is definately quieter than 80, but make sure to run at lower voltages.

i had the same harddrive and noticed that it has a high pitched whine. maybe i just had a faulty drive, but double check yours isn't if you're seeking ultra silence.

the gpu: check out the zalman vga heatpipe or similar products.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 9:32 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2004 4:31 pm
Posts: 171
Location: Vancouver BC
49C idle cpu temp seems a bit high (esp ducted)...what are your ambient temps like?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 12:03 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 10:33 am
Posts: 330
Location: Keene, New Hampshire, USA
49idle is not high for normal situations (not ducted). I'd be insterested in seeing what it says with the side panel completely off.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 10:33 am
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Location: Keene, New Hampshire, USA
try to hide your wires some and get em out of the way of the airflow, that will help alot with temps.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 11:47 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 6:25 pm
Posts: 8
Thanks for all the the replies.

To answer your questions, the CPU duct is included with the case. (not a bad deal, $35+shipping) Quite a bit of air is getting sucked in here, as a piece of tissue paper (kleenex) will stick to the grill fairly firmly.

What's interesting about the CPU temperature to me is it maxes out at 62, only 13 higher than idle. I thought AMD's specs were 35W idle and 89W max, which means the temperature delta should be around 0.30 * (89-35) = 16 degrees. If the wattage specs are to be believed, my CPU h-sink thermal resistance is 13 / (89-35) = .24 C deg / W, which is probably not right. You guys are probably already aware of this, but it amazes me how quickly the CPU cools down after going from max load to idle - it just takes a few seconds.

How accurate are CPU thermocouples/thermistors, anyways?

With the side of the case off, I think temps are about the same, although I haven't tested it formally. I'm not sure what the ambient temp was exactly - I'd guess 25.

About the wires, like I said I think temps improved by about 1 degree (C) after spiral wrapping them. I would imagine I could get another degree or two by tying them down even better. Much more than that - I'm not sure. The wiring looks better in real life, than it does in the photos, as you can't see 3D in a photo and it looks like everything is on top of each other.

As for the intake fan, I'd like to keep something blowing over the HDD as it is suspended now and can't sink any heat to the case. (My old case/computer was noticably warm to the touch, so it goes to show it is sinking heat from your mounted components.) The HDD is pretty loud, I have to admit, but I'll keep it for now as I have a "loud" graphics card anyways. Speaking of which, I don't know of any quiet-cooling products out yet for the GeForce 6800 (base), if someone has experience with any please let me know.

Overall my feeling is that these temps are safe for the components, however if you guys think the temps are a little high then it is probably an indicator that the case airflow has room for improvement.

Thanks for your comments!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 6:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 10:33 am
Posts: 330
Location: Keene, New Hampshire, USA
did you apply the proper ammount of TIM? maybe try reapplying it to see if that does anything to your cpu temps, because something doesnt seem right with that CPU temp (espeically ducted, with the fan at 12V).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 9:24 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 6:25 pm
Posts: 8
One note, the CPU fan is at 5V. I haven't measured the temp at 12V.

TIM = thermal grease?


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