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 Post subject: Antec P182 build. With Q9550. Update: Finally quiet
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:28 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 24, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 44
Location: San Jose, CA, US
This is a build reusing some old and very old parts that I had so please don't judge it heavily. I will upgrade it at some point.

Motherboard Asus P5Q Pro, 8GB 1066 DDR2.
Back fan - Scythe Slipstream 1200 RPM
Top fan Scythe S-Flex 1200
Front bottom fan Yate Loon 120x20 1200
All fans are undervolted with combination of resistors and mobo fan management.
Two Logisys HD-Silencers, HS102SL

These and Antec P182 are the only new parts, others are old

Pentium e5200 @ 3.3 GHz
PSU - Corsair 450VX, pretty quiet for me.

very old parts:

CPU cooler - Arctic Freezer 7 Pro, still works well after 2 years.
HDDs - Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 320GB and WD AAKS 500 GB. One for OS, another for Programs and Temp folder.
Video - GeCube Radeon X1950 Pro with custom Zalman VF900 Cu cooler.

I can't make had drives quiet. I understand that my HDDs are not supposed to be quiet, especially Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 and I plan to upgrade one HDD to SSD and replace second HDD to Samsung HD501J that I have in other PC.
I just hoped that Antec case would give more noise protection, but it doesn't.

First I suspended HDDs with Stretch Magic. That reduced the noise but not to the level I wanted.
Then I bought Logisys HD Silencers and suspended them too. These do great job, noise reduction is quite substantial but still idle hissing can be clearly heard.

I think Logisys HD Silencers is very good piece of hardware and it can make other, more quiet HDD silent. Temperature level is guite good too. It is about 33-34C under heavy load when ambient temperature is about 22-24C. It can go to 37-39C with ambient 26-27C but then I turn air conditioning on.
For that I had to install 120x20mm Yate Loon fan in the front of bottom chamber. It is quiet when heavily undervolted. With stock Antec bottom fan the HDD temperature was higher by 3-5 degrees and the fan was much louder. I ditched all Antec stock fans, I wonder why they bother to include them with the case.

Subjectively, Logisys is doing much better job than Antec. If I open Antec side panel I hear noise increase. But it is minor comparing to what my HDDs were producing before I put them into Logysis enclosures.

Anyway, I know that I have loud hard drives. Video card is also not silent. While Zalman VF900 Cu cooler is great, stupid GeCube video card doesn't have temperature sensor and it can't control the fan. So I keep it on a safe side, pretty quiet, but audible. I am not a gaming fan, I play some old games once a week but I will ditch this video card at some point.
It is audible if default Antec configuration is used. Once I taped top fan vents it became much better.

So, while I would appreciate any advices on how to make this rig quieter, I understand that I need to replace hard drives and video and I'm going to do it in the next upgrade cycle, as soon as OCZ Vertex 120GB comes closer to $200, or at least below $300. HDDs are the main source for noise now, followed by video card.

The reasons I posted this in gallery is because I haven't seen the following mods in this forum (I might have missed them, sorry if that's a case), so I thought someone might find them useful:

- Zalman fanmate in place of Antec fan controllers. For me it controls the top S-Flex fan. The top fan is not really needed for Pentium e5200 @ 3.3 GHz. It may become handy when I upgradde CPU to Q9550.
- Top fan vents covered with tape. It significantly reduces noise from video card (which is by no means loud in my case anyway, HDDs are louder). I think it's better solution than covering top vents with a book. It is simple to do, I wonder why it hasn't been proposed as an official SPCR solution. It just helps to silence things while keeping top fan working.
- Logisys HD silensers suspended in bottom chamber. Really helped in noise reduction.
- Yate Loon 20mm fan in the front of bottom chamber. While it was known that 20mm fan can be put in the bottom chamber I could not find any guide for that on this forum.

Feel free to criticize

Top vent covered by transparent tape
Image

Logisys HD silensers suspended. Unused holes are because I tried to suspend HDDs without enclosures. Not good enough.
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Logisys in Antec
Image

Yate Loon 20mm fan in front bottom chamber. Later I secured bottom left corner with a screw. Good enough.
Image

Had to bent bottom front cage with pliers in order to insert fan, then bent metal back, not perfectly.
Image

An attempt to silence hard drives - some cheap tube insulation from Home Depot. Maybe it helped but not much, hard drives are still heard at idle. That's before I got rid of the middle Antec fan. Of course I stopped Antec fan during my subjective noise measurements.

Image

Zalman Fanmate 2 in place of Antec fan controllers. Something has to take that place.
Image

Zalman inside
Image

Parts I used to mount Zalman Fanmate controller. These two "screws" (don't know how they are called) are not motherboard stand offs, they are longer and one can stack them, screw one piece into another. I just had them from somewhere, I can't name the parts. I think something similar can be found in OSH. The goal is just to keep Zalman controller steady. There will be about 1/2 inch distance between Zalman mounting points and the case. You can fill this 1/2 inch with washers and use longer screw, or use stuff similar to what I used, doesn't matter.
Image


Last edited by micksh on Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 2:57 pm
Posts: 507
Location: England
What's with the ground wire on the HDDs?

Clever way to mount the fanmate, I may steal that idea. You can stack motherboard standoffs if they're the same thread btw (they're usually 6/32 UTS on both ends, but there are ones with M3 receiving threads).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 11:14 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 24, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 44
Location: San Jose, CA, US
Quote:
What's with the ground wire on the HDDs?


I did not dig into this. It doesn't make much sense to me but it was in the instructions and it wasn't hard to do so I just connected the wire. I don't care even if it's useless. These Logisys are good pieces of hardware.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2009 12:05 am 
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Joined: Sun May 24, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 44
Location: San Jose, CA, US
There is one note that I think I have to make.
There are reportedly some hard drives with so called "breathing hole". Reportedly enclosures like Logisis HD Silenser may cover that hole and then hard drive dies.
My hard drives don't have that hole and I don't know which drives have it. For me Logisis just worked great.
Just inspect your drive before considering this enclosure. There should be a warning if the hole exists. I got this info either from Newegg review of this enclosure http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductRe ... 6817999003 or some other similar product review, don't remember.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2009 12:11 am 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 2:57 pm
Posts: 507
Location: England
Your HDDs do have such a hole. All do.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2009 8:54 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 12:19 pm
Posts: 175
Location: US
I have a 640GB Caviar Blue Western Digital and I don't know where the drive breath hole is and I think I'm covering it right now in my Tuniq Sanctum enclosure...anyone have one of these drives and know where the hole is?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:02 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 24, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 44
Location: San Jose, CA, US
thepwner,
If you have such hole you should see a warning printed on hard drive like "Don't cover this hole". Maybe all hard drives have such holes, I'm not sure. But experience tells that if there is no warning the hard drive can be safely put in enclosure. 2 HDDs have been working for a month now and see user reviews on NewEgg and other sites.
If there is a printed warning and the hole is covered then there is a chance that HDD may die.

BTW, I have Tuniq Sanctum enclosure too but I didn't have a chance to use it. Bought it for another PC but posponed that.
Is it good?
It would not fit into Antec bottom chamber - way too long. See comparison
Image[/img]


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2009 3:46 am 
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Location: Greece
It`s looks good so far. It`s not necessary to have the newest parts in order to build a nice and quiet computer ;) It would be nice if we could see an overall shot of your computer.

Quote:
What's with the ground wire on the HDDs?


A conventionally mounted drive has an electrical connection to the chassis and the ground wire is there to replace that (logisys anticipated that the drives were going to be soft mounted?). I use them myself on my soft mounted drives though I don`t know if it`s really necessary since the drive is grounded through the power cable anyway.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:17 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:41 pm
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Location: the ether
nice trick with the fan controller, thanks for the tip

fwiw, some of those old small hdds can make a lot more noise than the latest green drives do.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:39 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:11 am
Posts: 540
Location: Massachusetts, USA
micksh wrote:
Quote:
What's with the ground wire on the HDDs?


I did not dig into this. It doesn't make much sense to me but it was in the instructions and it wasn't hard to do so I just connected the wire. I don't care even if it's useless. These Logisys are good pieces of hardware.


allow me to help clarify. When you connect your psu to your hdds, there is a ground wire in the mini ribbon that takes care of grounding your hdds. Therefore, there is zero need to add the grounding wire to the enclosure of the hdds, unless you anticipate your cpu connector coming lose and running rampant in your case, zapping eveyrhting thats metal and rieking havoc on your hdd enclosures!!! ..ill take my chances lol

anyways..dont feel bad mick, its always better to be safe than sorry. A lot of people don't bother thinking about grounding (even while they are workin on their mobo!) *shudders*


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:31 pm 
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Location: England
ntavlas wrote:
A conventionally mounted drive has an electrical connection to the chassis and the ground wire is there to replace that (logisys anticipated that the drives were going to be soft mounted?). I use them myself on my soft mounted drives though I don`t know if it`s really necessary since the drive is grounded through the power cable anyway.


Not all drives. I've seen many cases (including OEM ones from Dell and HP) with entirely plastic drive mounting and no contact between metal chassis and drive. Antec cases use silicone grommets which prevent contact. And almost all laptop drives have no such connection. HDDs don't require any sort of independant ground to the chassis.

On the subject of breathing holes: Again, all HDDs have such a hole. They're needed to prevent pressure building up inside the drive with temperature increases. However, as long as you don't go as far as covering them with a rubber block or taping over them, they shouldn't be a problem. If you're worried about it, find the hole on your drive (any hole in the side, top, or bottom of the drive is a likely candidate, they're not always marked, but you can usually see the extremely fine filter inside), and cut a suitable hole in anything which will cover it.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 10:42 pm 
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Location: San Jose, CA, US
ntavlas wrote:
It`s looks good so far. It`s not necessary to have the newest parts in order to build a nice and quiet computer ;) It would be nice if we could see an overall shot of your computer.

Thanks:) Here is one (I assume internal one because from outside it is regular P182 except tape on top vent which is not very visible without direct light)
Image

BTW, hard drive is surrounded with silicon film inside enclose and it sits pretty tight. Controller PCB brobably can breath but if supposed breathing hole is on another side it might be a problem.

Also the necessity of grounding is more doubtful as this film is probably not a conductor. Anyway, I don't fill sorry that I grounded it. It took 2 minutes and it shouldn't hurt even if it's not needed.
They probably had a reason to include ground wire with enclosure otherwise it would be waste of their money/time.

The film surrounding HDD is on the first picture. They call it "silicon-film" in manual. It feels like mix between silicon and rubber probably because it has adhesive layer that sticks to enclosure.

Image
Image


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 4:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:11 am
Posts: 540
Location: Massachusetts, USA
heyyy me and u have the same cpu and vga heat sinks.

rock on!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 6:51 am 
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Ye gods, that cable job gives me the shivers...

Otherwise I'd say its getting there, but do something with the cables! :)

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 10:57 pm 
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Location: San Jose, CA, US
Wibla wrote:
Ye gods, that cable job gives me the shivers...
Otherwise I'd say its getting there, but do something with the cables! :)

Yes, I know my cable management sucks.
Sure I will fix it at some point. But now it would not help to silence my HDDs, would it?
Sorry for unpleasant look, that wasn't a point of this thread.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:11 pm 
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Location: San Jose, CA, US
Finally I was able to return to this and finish it. It ultimately became quiet, as quiet as I wanted. I could sleep in the same room with this PC on if I wanted to.

New parts:
- Intel X25-M G2 160GB SSD
- Intel Q9550 Quad CPU
- Scythe Mugen 2 CPU cooler
- Arctic Cooling AF9 PWM fan, 2nd fan for CPU.
- Seasonic X650 Gold PSU
- Samsung F2 HD502HI 5400 RPM HDD
- Asus ENGT240/DI/512MD5 GeForce GT240 512MB GDDR5 video

Old parts:
- Antec P182 case
- Asus P5Q Pro motherboard
- 8GB DDR2 GSkill memory
- All 3 case fans
- Logysis hard drive enclosure

Scythe Mugen 2 is a beautiful cooler! It is absolutely quiet. Even if I put my ear and inch close to it. Fan speed is about 250 RPM and BIOS prints an error about CPU fan failed but it boots fine. I could not put stock 120 mm fan facing case front because of tall memory modules. I put it on the bottom and added Arctic Cooling AF9 for better cooling. Just in case, I don't know if it's necessary but it doesn't hurt. AF9 can stack another PWM fan and I connected Scythe stock fan through it. No impact on noise, both fans are silent.

Now there are only 3 sources of noise:

1. Scythe Slipstream 120mm fan at ~650 RPM. Probably the noisiest one. I can slow it down but there is no need - it's quiet enough for me.

2. Asus GT 240 video. It is very quiet, probably on par with with Scythe fan above but Antec case silences it a little.

3. Samsung Hard drive (rated 12 dBA)
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article951-page4.html
And it is inside enclosure. Still can be heard but barely. It's the least source of noise.

I overclocked CPU to 3.4 GHz just for curiosity. No CPU voltage change was required for that. Here is some temperature and fan speed data:

CPU core temps 32-39C idle, 50-56 load
CPU cores overclocked 36-42C idle, 56-62C load

GPU: 48C idle, 70C furmark load, doesn't matter if CPU is overclocked.

CPU fan 250 rpm idle 680 rpm load
Overclocked CPU fan 250 rpm idle, 900 rpm load, still can't be heard inside Antec P182.

Ambient temp is ~23C.

Some pictures:
Image
This is some old 2.5" to 3.5" HDD brackets that I had. Had to mount Intel SSD in this way because Antec top HDD chamber has screw holes only on the bottom.
Image

CPU heatsink. Additional AC fan is mounted with StretchMagic.
Image

Overall look
Image

And I've got external IDE connector for legacy HDDs that I have.
Image

danimal wrote:
nice trick with the fan controller, thanks for the tip

Just noticed, SPCR used the same thing 10 days after my post here:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article959-page6.html
Probably independent, the idea is obvious, I think. Just not many cases have a proper hole for Zalman controller.

Please don't blame me for ugly cable management. I'm not good at it. I tried, I bought cable mounts and stuff but I don't have time for this. It is good enough for me. If I get more power hungry video I may have to revisit it, but it works fine now.

And I also built a monster, WHS server. Not quiet though, it's for garage. So this would be off topic.
Image


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2010 11:10 am 
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Location: OV, The Netherlands
Nice trick with the fanmate!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:37 am 
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WOW, that's alot of fans, way too much!!...

For instance, I have q9550 @ 3.8GHz (1.25V) with HR-01+, ducted to back fan of P182, top fan hole covered. So two PWM fans total, one on the heatsink and one on the back, at idle running at 480RPM and full load 750RPM, max temperatures are around 65°C.


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