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 Post subject: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:52 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:38 pm
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I intend to re-build my audio/video workstation soon, in order to improve airflow and noise levels. I want the case to be as silent as possible, while still providing sufficient airflow for moderate OC of the CPU and for my nVidia card (at stock speed). I need some advice on which case to get, as I find it difficult to choose without the proper experience :D Of relevant components that must fit in the case, I have a Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler (160 mm tall), an MSI GTX 560 Ti 448 video card, two hard drives and an SSD. So far I've looked at the following cases:

Antec P183 V3
Antec P280
Antec Solo II
Fractal Design Define R3

I find it really hard to choose between these, as when reading about them there seems to be some small drawbacks associated with each, and I'm not sure if the Solo will hold my video card? Please help me decide :)


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 6:37 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:50 pm
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aknuds1 wrote:
I intend to re-build my audio/video workstation soon, in order to improve airflow and noise levels. I want the case to be as silent as possible, while still providing sufficient airflow for moderate OC of the CPU and for my nVidia card (at stock speed). I need some advice on which case to get, as I find it difficult to choose without the proper experience :D Of relevant components that must fit in the case, I have a Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler (160 mm tall), an MSI GTX 560 Ti 448 video card, two hard drives and an SSD. So far I've looked at the following cases:

Antec P183 V3
Antec P280
Antec Solo II
Fractal Design Define R3

I find it really hard to choose between these, as when reading about them there seems to be some small drawbacks associated with each, and I'm not sure if the Solo will hold my video card? Please help me decide :)


Don't go for a P183 when the is P280 available.

Personally I'd go with either the P280 or R3. I chose the R3 for the moduvents, since I'd have to spend more time/resources to close off the exhaust vents on the P280. With the R3 I can leave them as is and be in great shape for noise.

I'd say R3 for noise suppression and P280 for space/cooling. Both are pretty damn quiet but the R3 is a bit quieter thanks to closing off fan holes entirely.

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i7 920 (no oc) w/ Noctua NH-D14 | Asus P6T | Asus 6950 DC II 2gb | 12gb G.Skill Ripjaws 1600mhz | Intel X-25M 80gb Gen2 | 2x WD Caviar Green 1TB 64m cache |2x WD Caviar Green 2TB 64m cache | Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 | Seasonic X-660 | Fractal Design R3 + 4x Noctua S12B 120mm


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 11:33 pm 
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I think the SOLO II can hold a GTX560 fine, its maintaining a GTS450 with all fans running at less than 300rpm, not saying its the best case for airflow, but its not bad, with dual fans on front it should have decent airflow, just a matter on how your run them. I would guess the Solo II has better airflow than R3 as the fans are not blowing into hdd cages, well at least the bottom, in my case both as i dont run 3.5 mechanical hdds, then again the R3 has multiple options of adding more fans, so things could change if you do. R3 is a nice case, i almost bought one for doing a small server... but the needs increased rapidly this year and 8 were not enough. Now all my hardware on HTPC is lower end than what you have planned, but im also running the fans were they barely move any air at all, i think running them 500 to 800rpm i should be able to mantian an i7 + GTX560, but OC... idk, my idea was to build almost silent HTPC, for OC there is probably other cases around, like the SPCR Golden Choice awarded, Silverstone Fortress FT02 ATX Case

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GameMi >> MSI Z87-GD65 | Intel Core i7-4790K | Thermalright Silver Arrow IBE + 3x Noctua NF-A15 PWM @500rpms| Crucial Ballistix Sport 32GB DDR3 1600 | nVidia GTX780 + ARCTIC Accelero Xtreme IV | Samsung SA850 27'' 2560x1440 | Samsung 840pro 512GB | Hitachi 7K1000 1TB | Fractal Design Define R4 + 4x Noctua NF-A14 PWM @450rpm | SeaSonic SS-860XP2
Other builds ---> ServeMi | CamMi | MiniMi | HTPCMi


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:53 am 
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Lsv wrote:
Don't go for a P183 when the is P280 available.

Personally I'd go with either the P280 or R3. I chose the R3 for the moduvents, since I'd have to spend more time/resources to close off the exhaust vents on the P280. With the R3 I can leave them as is and be in great shape for noise.

I'd say R3 for noise suppression and P280 for space/cooling. Both are pretty damn quiet but the R3 is a bit quieter thanks to closing off fan holes entirely.

From what I understand though, from reading user comparisons, the P280 is noisier than the P183 V3. Supposedly it has less dampening, and is more prone to give off vibrations (in the SPCR review for instance they move the center top fan for this reason). Are there any real benefits to P280 over P183 V3 with my configuration? The one benefit I'm aware of is that it's more spacious (can hold longer video cards). My understanding is also that the P183 V3 is better on certain details than the R3, such as the dust filters being easier to access and clean.


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:55 am 
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Abula wrote:
I think the SOLO II can hold a GTX560 fine, its maintaining a GTS450 with all fans running at less than 300rpm, not saying its the best case for airflow, but its not bad, with dual fans on front it should have decent airflow, just a matter on how your run them. I would guess the Solo II has better airflow than R3 as the fans are not blowing into hdd cages, well at least the bottom, in my case both as i dont run 3.5 mechanical hdds, then again the R3 has multiple options of adding more fans, so things could change if you do. R3 is a nice case, i almost bought one for doing a small server... but the needs increased rapidly this year and 8 were not enough. Now all my hardware on HTPC is lower end than what you have planned, but im also running the fans were they barely move any air at all, i think running them 500 to 800rpm i should be able to mantian an i7 + GTX560, but OC... idk, my idea was to build almost silent HTPC, for OC there is probably other cases around, like the SPCR Golden Choice awarded, Silverstone Fortress FT02 ATX Case
Why should I eventually pick a Solo II over P183 V3 or P280? Don't know a whole lot about that case, but I do know many recommend the P183 for audio work.


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:19 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:50 pm
Posts: 108
aknuds1 wrote:
Lsv wrote:
Don't go for a P183 when the is P280 available.

Personally I'd go with either the P280 or R3. I chose the R3 for the moduvents, since I'd have to spend more time/resources to close off the exhaust vents on the P280. With the R3 I can leave them as is and be in great shape for noise.

I'd say R3 for noise suppression and P280 for space/cooling. Both are pretty damn quiet but the R3 is a bit quieter thanks to closing off fan holes entirely.

From what I understand though, from reading user comparisons, the P280 is noisier than the P183 V3. Supposedly it has less dampening, and is more prone to give off vibrations (in the SPCR review for instance they move the center top fan for this reason). Are there any real benefits to P280 over P183 V3 with my configuration? The one benefit I'm aware of is that it's more spacious (can hold longer video cards). My understanding is also that the P183 V3 is better on certain details than the R3, such as the dust filters being easier to access and clean.


Yes and the P183 doors are dual panel + dampening material sandwiched inside but you still have to find a way to block off the top exhaust port when on the R3 you can leave the moduvents as is and if come summer you need more cooling it's an easy switch.

But yea, it's a great case I still think the R3 offers a quieter solution if done right, a good option is the bottom intake no the R3, allowing you to free up a front intake.

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i7 920 (no oc) w/ Noctua NH-D14 | Asus P6T | Asus 6950 DC II 2gb | 12gb G.Skill Ripjaws 1600mhz | Intel X-25M 80gb Gen2 | 2x WD Caviar Green 1TB 64m cache |2x WD Caviar Green 2TB 64m cache | Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 | Seasonic X-660 | Fractal Design R3 + 4x Noctua S12B 120mm


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 8:35 am
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Location: Pleasanton, CA
The P280 is IMHO the worst choice listed. It was designed for ease-of-build, not silence. The P183 fixes many of the issues of the original P180 (especially lack of inlet cross-section) without reducing any of its sound reduction techniques.

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i7 2600K CPU@4.4 GHz, Asrock Z68, 8GB Corsair Vengeance 1866 CL9, Intel 335 240GB SSD + Samsung HD502HI 500GB, Internal i7 graphics, Antec P180 case, Seasonic X-400 fanless PS, Megahalems CPU HS, Nexus 3-pin & AC PWM fans ~ 600 RPM, AcoustiPack foam, homemade ducts.


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:47 am 
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cmthomson wrote:
The P280 is IMHO the worst choice listed. It was designed for ease-of-build, not silence. The P183 fixes many of the issues of the original P180 (especially lack of inlet cross-section) without reducing any of its sound reduction techniques.

Thanks for confirming this :) I decided on the Silverstone Raven 02, though. I was drawn to the supposedly superior airflow and internal design, while from what I understand it is pretty silent with fans on low.


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2007 10:35 pm
Posts: 488
Location: Israel
aknuds1 wrote:
cmthomson wrote:
The P280 is IMHO the worst choice listed. It was designed for ease-of-build, not silence. The P183 fixes many of the issues of the original P180 (especially lack of inlet cross-section) without reducing any of its sound reduction techniques.

Thanks for confirming this :) I decided on the Silverstone Raven 02, though. I was drawn to the supposedly superior airflow and internal design, while from what I understand it is pretty silent with fans on low.


Can't say I completely agree with your choice. Not that its a bad one, but FT02 or Raven2 are relatively quiet when dealing with gamer or otherwise hot systems due to excellent airflow that keeps the GPU temps and fan speeds down to a minimum. If you are looking for a case that is a quiet as can be at low GPU loads like in an audio workstation uses, you'll do better with Solo II or if you need more room P183 / R3 with some fan swaps and possibly blocking the top vents.

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DAW - Antec P150, i7 2600K @ 4.4 GHz , Intel DP67BG, Crucial C300 SATA 3 SSD, Passive Geforce 8500GT, Samsung F1 1TB audio drive, Seasonic S12II520, TRUE+AC PWM@500RPM, Noctua 120@700 RPM
Video Edit- Antec P183, i7 2600, Intel DP67BG, Quadro 2000, Samsung 500GB system, 2*WB 1TB RAID 0, TRUE, Seasonic S12II620


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:35 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:38 pm
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ame wrote:
aknuds1 wrote:
cmthomson wrote:
The P280 is IMHO the worst choice listed. It was designed for ease-of-build, not silence. The P183 fixes many of the issues of the original P180 (especially lack of inlet cross-section) without reducing any of its sound reduction techniques.

Thanks for confirming this :) I decided on the Silverstone Raven 02, though. I was drawn to the supposedly superior airflow and internal design, while from what I understand it is pretty silent with fans on low.


Can't say I completely agree with your choice. Not that its a bad one, but FT02 or Raven2 are relatively quiet when dealing with gamer or otherwise hot systems due to excellent airflow that keeps the GPU temps and fan speeds down to a minimum. If you are looking for a case that is a quiet as can be at low GPU loads like in an audio workstation uses, you'll do better with Solo II or if you need more room P183 / R3 with some fan swaps and possibly blocking the top vents.

I'm also doing some video production, where the GPU comes into play. You don't think the Silverstone allows for better cooling wrt. overclocking the CPU either?


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 8:17 am 
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Location: Israel
aknuds1 wrote:
I'm also doing some video production, where the GPU comes into play. You don't think the Silverstone allows for better cooling wrt. overclocking the CPU either?


Yes, it will likely run a bit cooler than a P183 or R3. Still having 3 180 fans (with no valid option for swapping them) + a 120 means it can only be as quiet as all of those fans on low. Its a good case and definitely one to consider.
I was looking at it from a pure audio perspective - looking for the absolute silent rig. But I get what your looking for with lower temps the Raven might be right for you. If you must the FT02 looks better IMHO.

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Video Edit- Antec P183, i7 2600, Intel DP67BG, Quadro 2000, Samsung 500GB system, 2*WB 1TB RAID 0, TRUE, Seasonic S12II620


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 8:32 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:38 pm
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ame wrote:
aknuds1 wrote:
I'm also doing some video production, where the GPU comes into play. You don't think the Silverstone allows for better cooling wrt. overclocking the CPU either?


Yes, it will likely run a bit cooler than a P183 or R3. Still having 3 180 fans (with no valid option for swapping them) + a 120 means it can only be as quiet as all of those fans on low. Its a good case and definitely one to consider.
I was looking at it from a pure audio perspective - looking for the absolute silent rig. But I get what your looking for with lower temps the Raven might be right for you. If you must the FT02 looks better IMHO.

I know the FT02 is an upgrade looks-wise (plus it has revised HD cages?), but I'm not prepared to fork out an additional $133 for looks :)


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:09 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
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Location: Guatemala
The FT02 imo is a good choice for somone looking for OC gaming build, it should have very good airflow, in my experience the FM181 is not a quiet fan, but undervolting it below 600rpm is quiet enough for me while still moving a lot of air, that said, i think P183/R3/SoloII can handle i7 + GTX560 fine, and end up with more choices of swaping fans and have noise damping on the case, personally i like a lot Boring but silent build.

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GameMi >> MSI Z87-GD65 | Intel Core i7-4790K | Thermalright Silver Arrow IBE + 3x Noctua NF-A15 PWM @500rpms| Crucial Ballistix Sport 32GB DDR3 1600 | nVidia GTX780 + ARCTIC Accelero Xtreme IV | Samsung SA850 27'' 2560x1440 | Samsung 840pro 512GB | Hitachi 7K1000 1TB | Fractal Design Define R4 + 4x Noctua NF-A14 PWM @450rpm | SeaSonic SS-860XP2
Other builds ---> ServeMi | CamMi | MiniMi | HTPCMi


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 Post subject: Re: Need a quiet PC case for i7 build, moderate OC
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:09 am 
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The shop couldn't get me the Raven after all :( Contemplating going with P183 V3 just as well.


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