It is currently Sat Dec 20, 2014 2:30 pm

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 2:56 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
I'm trying to build a relatively quiet (silence is important but not paramount) system and am having lots of trouble picking a case. The cooler master 690 II advanced (_without_ the side window) had my eye for a while because:

1. Its cheap
2. Hot swappable HD bay on top
3. Looks nice (I like open-grill fronts)
4. black interior
5. screw-less design

Unfortunately it was suggested that all those open air vents will mean it will leak a lot of sound. So I have two (sets of) questions.

Set 1:

1. Can the 690 ii be saved? i.e. can it be made silent by using a several slow moving fans to keep it very cool quietly and blocking unused vents with some foam or something?
2. Can anyone who actually owns this case comment on how silent/noisy it can be?

Set 2:

If not the 690 then what else? Is the Define R3 significantly better? Looks are relatively important to me and to give a sense for my aesthetics I really like the Fractal Design Arc Midi (which is not yet out) and the Mac Pro. Can anyone recommend some decent cases (or comment on the below) satisfying the criteria I listed above?

Cases I'm considering:

1. Fractal Design R3 or XL - not crazy about looks and apparently runs kinda hot
2. Fractal Design Arc Midi - looks amazing but not yet out.
3. Nexus Prominant 5 - looks pretty good but somehow a bit flimsy and no detailed reviews
4. NZXT H2 - Nice but can't seem to find it locally
5. Lian Li Lancool pc-k62 - looks ok but not sure its silent at all

A recent thread mentioned several of these cases but no one said anything about the cooler master 690 ii:

viewtopic.php?f=15&t=61993&hilit=690+ii+advanced

If it helps here are the proposed specs of the machine i wanna build:

Cooler Master CM-690 II Advanced (or one of the above)
Cooler Master Silent Pro 500W (M500)
Core i7 2600K
Scythe Mugen 2 rev. b
Asus P8P67 Pro (Rev. B3)
MSI GeForce GTX 560 Ti Twin Frozr II (1 Gb)
Corsair Vengeance - 8 Go : 2 x 4 Go - DDR3 - 1600 MHz / PC3-12800 (1.5V)
Western Digital HD - Caviar Black - 3,5“ - 1 TB - SATA III (or Blue)


Thanks!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
Just to add (to an already too long post):

the corsair 650d and 600t also look pretty interesting though both have niggles (i don't like side windows or curvy boxes and both are expensive). But comments recommendations would still be appreciated.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:38 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 686
Location: Gefle, Sweden
Open front mesh makes silence very unlikely. Impossible with any 7200 RMP 3,5" drives I've ever heard about, short of doing the drive-on-foam-block or sandwich-dont-mind-the-heat style of mods. Unless you plan to overclock that CPU a lot the system will be fairly easy to cool, making mesh front unnecessary as well. For instance in a Define R3 build it would suffice to have rear and top/rear fanmounts with speeds at around 500-800 RPM using fans like the Scyte Slip Stream series.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:25 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
The front mesh thing is much more about aesthetics for me than functionality -- as I said the Mac Pro or Fractal Design Arc Midi represent the kind of look I like. Somehow the boxiness of a front door I find a bit ugly. Nonetheless I am considering the R3 but the lack of hot swap bay and reduced number of front connectors (2x usb 2) is a bit of a put-off as is the not completely screw-less design. These are mostly little issues though.

How about putting sound-damping material behind the mesh on the 690? Wouldn't this effectively replicate the moduvent system of the R3 while keeping an exterior mesh look?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:05 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 686
Location: Gefle, Sweden
That's certainly an interesting idea. Block off most of the front with as much open cell foam as can be fitted there and most of the noise should be kept down. An open area about the size of a 5,25" bay should be enough for letting air in. The foam will be visible from straight ahead though, as the mesh is open and thin. So go for black'ish foam I guess. :)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:09 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:15 am
Posts: 232
Location: "Fake" Virginia, US
I've got a build shockingly close to yours:

i7-2600K (w/ Thermalright MUX-120)
ASUS P8P67
Gigabyte GTX-560 Ti (OC)
Samsung F4EG 2TB
Crucial C300 128GB
Seasonic X-650

I'm building it in the Lian Li PC-9F. I was looking at many of the same cases you're looking at (as you should already know... it was my thread you linked to) and opted for this one. Yes, the front mesh (which, in the PC-9F is actually a pattern of holes, not a real mesh or grille) is a liability, but I'm trying to offset that with fans that have exceptionally pleasant sound qualities and motherboard speed control.

Feel free to check out this thread for an explanation of what I'm doing with it to avoid the hard drive problem and keep it as silent as I can. For the most part, the same thing could be done with the Arc Midi (if it ever gets released) or various other mesh-front cases. (Short story: Isolate hard drives in the 5.25" bays with dampening.) The main thing to realize is that if you want to keep it quiet, you're going to need to go for the open/low-flow strategy rather than the baffle/directed-flow strategy. I've got a platoon of NoiseBlocker fans for the case, including two PWMs for push-pull on the MUX-120. I should be able to keep them turning at their minimum speeds at idle.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:52 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
Thanks for the info figmet. I looked at that thread but not in detail yet. In any case I'm glad to hear open mesh cases are not a complete no no. Is you "open/low-flow strategy" discussed in the thread you linked to? I'm not necessarily going to mod the system immediately. I'm ok running it as is to begin with and then slowly adding components to make it more silent (as I learn more about that).


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:01 pm 
Offline
Friend of SPCR

Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 4:41 am
Posts: 709
Location: Denmark
Go for the CM 690, it is a really nice case.. You can always add some noise dampening foam in the front afterwards, and, if you need, have an intake fan (or two) at the bottom.. Don't count on the HD cage to dampen your HDs' vibration.

_________________
Cooler Master Elite 341, Athlon II X3 425, Radeon 5750 (passive, fan zip-tied on), Crucial M4 64 GB.
Cooling: AC Alpine 64 Pro, rear exhaust Scythe Slipstream 800 rpm @ ~5 V


"SSD's: The difference between a casual jogger and a dog chasing a ball"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:10 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:15 am
Posts: 232
Location: "Fake" Virginia, US
jebus_beler wrote:
Thanks for the info figmet. I looked at that thread but not in detail yet. In any case I'm glad to hear open mesh cases are not a complete no no. Is you "open/low-flow strategy" discussed in the thread you linked to?
Well, it's not "my" strategy as its just an application of stuff that MikeC has been advocating for a while. The linked thread just has some nice photos of me trying to set it up. I'm still waiting for a heatsink, so I don't yet know just how successful it will be, but all the research I've done suggests that it should work out well enough. In theory, there shouldn't be much difference in how the PC-9F, Arc Midi, 690 II, or other mesh-front/dual-intake are handled.

Here is a rough layout of the plan:
Image
You can see more of the details in the full album, but the rough idea is to run a slightly positive-pressure case with the CPU/rear fan as the sole exhaust and let the vented slot covers act as passive exhausts under load (when the front fans spin up faster). To keep the fans running slow, I'm removing every obstacle I can between the front fans and the GPU/CPU. All possible cables are routed behind the mobo or blocked off with foam, all rough surfaces smoothed over with foam, and all drives moved into the 5.25" cage. If my hopes are realized, it will reduce the amount of heat that's transferred from the GPU to CPU, and provide a nice stream of cool air for the CPU. Of course, it really depends on the NoiseBlockers being every bit as good as various review sites say they are.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 2:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
That looks quite nice figment... thought something like that might be the way to go. I don't think I'm gonna run with that many drives so I can put the HD in the bottom 5.25 bay and then put foam padding in front of the other bays (except the dvd one) and at least part of the lower intake fan. What about running a fan to intake from below....that seems like it would be pretty silent, no?

Any recommendations on where to get sound-damping foam? A hardware store or is there specialized stuff made for PCs?

Maybe a naive question (and somewhat academic cause I'm probably not going to do this anytime soon) but one of the touted features of the 690 ii is the 11 slots for fans. If I were to use a lot of these to generate a directed air flow (say front to back) through the machine but set all the fans to a very low speed (so they're basically inaudible) would this potentially keep the machine very cool and hence quiet or would all the accumulated fan noise become audible? Also, maybe some noises like HD whirring is independent of how much the system is cooled.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 2:19 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
Sorry this may be a basic question but is it possible to reduce the speeds on the stock fans in the 690 ii? From the motherboard bios or something or do i need to buy a controller?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 4:27 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:15 am
Posts: 232
Location: "Fake" Virginia, US
jebus_beler wrote:
That looks quite nice figment... thought something like that might be the way to go. I don't think I'm gonna run with that many drives so I can put the HD in the bottom 5.25 bay and then put foam padding in front of the other bays (except the dvd one) and at least part of the lower intake fan.
I was close to picking the 690 II, and thats pretty much what I was thinking, too. A lot of people have complained about the 3.5 drive cages and drive resonance. If you want as little noise as possible and aren't running a bunch of drives, mounting in the 5.25 cages seems to be the way to go.
jebus_beler wrote:
What about running a fan to intake from below....that seems like it would be pretty silent, no?
Reports are mixed. You really have to experiment. The issue with running a front and "floor" fan is that the flows cross. Remember that your standard axial fan blows air in a cone, not a cylinder. So, at some point, the two fans are blowing in opposition to themselves. Maybe it would be fine. Maybe it would cause turbulence that would foul up the flow from both fans. It seems to be difficult to tell. Same thing happens with side panel fans. Sometimes they help. Sometimes they hurt. Sometimes they don't seem to have any affect at all (except adding more noise).
jebus_beler wrote:
Any recommendations on where to get sound-damping foam? A hardware store or is there specialized stuff made for PCs?
You've got a wide range to choose from. I've used closed cell packing foam (the foam which my case was packed in). It doesn't do a lot to stop noise, but it is a barrier and it does change the tone of noise. Next we have the open cell foam that you can pick up from most hardware stores. It will reduce some high frequency noise if you use enough of it, but for the most part, it doesn't do much to actually reduce the volume of noise. Real acoustic foam is like the open-cell stuff, but is generally pretty heavy. The Acoustipak I used falls into that category. Applying Acoustipak to my side panel more than doubled its weight (admittedly: my case is aluminum and therefore lighter than a steel case). The weight adds resistance to resonant vibrations. People say it works well. They also say it costs about $50 for three side-panel sized sheets. Some people get similar effects by layering cheap foam over vinyl floor tiles. There is also some professional level stuff, including the foam/fabric used in some high end car stereo or car customization installs and the "eggcrate" or "checkerboard" anechoic foam. That's even more expensive.
jebus_beler wrote:
Maybe a naive question but one of the touted features of the 690 ii is the 11 slots for fans. If I were to use a lot of these to generate a directed air flow (say front to back) through the machine but set all the fans to a very low speed (so they're basically inaudible) would this potentially keep the machine very cool and hence quiet or would all the accumulated fan noise become audible?
I'd say that using 11 fans in a mid-tower (even a super-mid) is going to cause problems. Its really hard to get a coherent flow out of that many fans. Better to use your 11 options to find a set of 5 fans that give you a nice flow over the areas that need it.

In my opinion, that is.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 4:32 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:15 am
Posts: 232
Location: "Fake" Virginia, US
jebus_beler wrote:
Sorry this may be a basic question but is it possible to reduce the speeds on the stock fans in the 690 ii? From the motherboard bios or something or do i need to buy a controller?
I figured thats why you got the ASUS P8P67 Pro. I don't have the pro version, but even I have the ability to power four (sets of) fans and control the speed of three. Specifically, my P8P67 allows me to control the CPU fan via PWM (I'll actually be running a pair of fans off the CPU header), the rear case fan via PWM, and a front case fan via voltage (I'll actually be splitting this for both front fans).

If you need to control more fans than that, then yeah, you'll need a fan controller. However, in most cases, you'll get the same level of cooling with just a few controlled fans and the rest at a steady, moderate speed.

NOTE: Be careful how many fans you put on a fan header. Generally, you want to stick with just one fan per header. If you know you've got low power fans and you know the motherboard header is rated for it, then you can use splitters to power more than one. I've already checked mine, so I am unconcerned.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Case recommendation: 690 II advanced vs R3 (and others)
PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:07 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:57 am
Posts: 41
Thanks a lot for all the replies figment. You've really been very helpful!


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group