I just added a new computer to the home network, and it's a real monster. It's primary mission in life is storage, and to that extent it has a RAID 5 array composed of 6 100 gig 7200rpm IBM drives. It makes a great fileserver (.5TB of storage
), but is extremely loud. with six drives in the array, plus a boot drive, disk noise alone is probably louder than most systems. To keep all the drives cool, there are three intake fans, two 80mm and one 120mm. I didn't have any power supplies big enough to run all this, so I ended up needing two of those, as well. With all these components, quieting it enough to coexist in the same room is pretty much a lost cause. (It's also ugly as sin, as it's bodged together out of two cases. I'll try to post a picture when I get my camera back).
As it's only a fileserver, and all it needs is network access, and thus we did the only sane thing - locate it in the laundry room, and access it remotely. Therein lies the rub. In open air, it's actually somewhat quiet, considering all the stuff in it. Put it in the little corner in the laundry room, and the noise bounces off all the walls and ends up several times as loud. Fortunately, my room is far enough away that I don't hear it at night, but it is defeating my attempts at a quiet HTPC, and annoying in the kitchen.
I think what I want to do first and foremost is deaden the resonation in that little corner of the laundry room. To this extent, I was thinking of putting up a couple of 2x4 panels of some sound absorbant material. So instead of trying to put the insulation inside the case (it's open anyhow) , I'm lining the walls. Any ideas what I could put up that would dampen the noise? It'd also have to be fairly cheap, as we're talking 10+ square feet.. The case is at ground level, so any material can just sit on the floor and lean up against the wall. Any ideas?