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 Post subject: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:42 am 
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I was originally set on basing my audio/video production PC around the Silverstone Raven 2 case, but the dealer just told me they've stopped stocking it. Therefore I'm again considering the Antec P183 V3. I am going to do some moderate overclocking of my air cooled (Noctua NH-D14) i7 2600K CPU, and of other heat generating components I'm putting an MSI GTX 560 Ti 448 video card in there (not overclocked). The case is also to contain two hard drives and two SSDs.

Basically, I'm looking for some advice from you guys on which simple modifications I should perform to ensure a good compromise between silent operation and good airflow. Any modifications should be simple as I've never modified a case except for installing new fans :) I'm prepared to replace the stock Antec fans with Noctuas, as I've understood the stock fans aren't very good. I'm not a total freak about silent computing either, as I've only had semi-silent PCs up till now :) Looking forward to a more quiet system though.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:11 am 
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Personally i like a lot the Boring but silent, maybe you can grab some ideas from it, like closing the top vent, aftermarket coolers for the GPU n CPU, which fans he used, i dont like too much noctuas fans, to me they are overpriced and for that amount prefer noiseblockers multiframes, but as long as you are happy with noctua fans then go for it, i just prefer to save a little into scythe or if im spending more then i go noiseblockers.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:25 am 
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Abula wrote:
Personally i like a lot the Boring but silent, maybe you can grab some ideas from it, like closing the top vent, aftermarket coolers for the GPU n CPU, which fans he used, i dont like too much noctuas fans, to me they are overpriced and for that amount prefer noiseblockers multiframes, but as long as you are happy with noctua fans then go for it, i just prefer to save a little into scythe or if im spending more then i go noiseblockers.

I don't think I can be arsed changing the coolers for GPU/CPU, the cooler on the MSI is already better than the reference type at the very least. I'm looking at the Noctua fans mainly because they're stocked by my local shop, I don't think they have any real alternatives. I can see however that Noiseblocker fans are available from webshops here in Norway, although I'm totally unfamiliar with this brand. Can you recommend any particular Noiseblocker fans for this case? Which Scythe fans?


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:51 am 
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Noctua wouldn`t be my fist pick either. The NoiseBlocker fan in question is the BlackSilent series which comes in different sizes. I have no personal experience with these but they are well regarded fans. Other popular fans are the Skythe Slipstream and of course the Nexus Real Silent.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 9:05 am 
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Thanks for the input guys :) The P183 can only take 120mm fans am I right?

Can I get some advice on which particular fan models I should look into? It looks like both Scythe and Noiseblocker are in good supply, but both brands have many models. It looks like the following fan series are available to me:

  • Noiseblocker BlackSilent
  • NoiseBlocker Multiframe
  • Scythe Slip Stream
  • Scythe Gentle Typhoon

What to choose? Should I get PWM fans? Don't have experience with motherboard controlled fans, but my motherboard is an Asus P8Z68-V Pro/GEN3 if it makes any difference.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:11 pm 
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aknuds1 wrote:
I don't think I can be arsed changing the coolers for GPU/CPU, the cooler on the MSI is already better than the reference type at the very least. I'm looking at the Noctua fans mainly because they're stocked by my local shop, I don't think they have any real alternatives.
Noctuas are good fans, just i think are a little more expensive than they should, but as i said, if you are happy with them, thats all that matters.

aknuds1 wrote:
I can see however that Noiseblocker fans are available from webshops here in Norway, although I'm totally unfamiliar with this brand. Can you recommend any particular Noiseblocker fans for this case? Which Scythe fans?
Depending on your needs there is different rpm versions, but i like Noiseblocker NB-Multiframe M12-S1 120mmx25mm Ultra Silent Fan - 750 RPM - below 6 dBA. There is also the normal frame version. Scythe Slipstreams are also good and cheap in my experience, you can find them from 500rpm to 1900rpm, chose depending on your cooling needs. Nexus 120mm stadard basic fan are also good choice.


aknuds1 wrote:
Thanks for the input guys :) The P183 can only take 120mm fans am I right?

Can I get some advice on which particular fan models I should look into? It looks like both Scythe and Noiseblocker are in good supply, but both brands have many models. It looks like the following fan series are available to me:

  • Noiseblocker BlackSilent
  • NoiseBlocker Multiframe
  • Scythe Slip Stream
  • Scythe Gentle Typhoon

What to choose? Should I get PWM fans? Don't have experience with motherboard controlled fans, but my motherboard is an Asus P8Z68-V Pro/GEN3 if it makes any difference.
Mmmm hard to say, i have own all the ones you listed and they are all good fans, if you want cheap fans go with slipstreams, if you want good static pressure (like heatsinks and rads) and/or horizontal mounting, go with Gentle Typhoons, and the best imo of the ones you listed is the Multiframe. Now between PWM and standard.... its up to you, most mobos out there only have 1 or 2 4pin pwm headers, most of the time for CPU fans, so check your mobo first, specially if the mobo can control the fans. The easiest would be a fan controller and just undervolt the fans depending on your needs and conditions.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 2:09 pm 
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Abula wrote:
Mmmm hard to say, i have own all the ones you listed and they are all good fans, if you want cheap fans go with slipstreams, if you want good static pressure (like heatsinks and rads) and/or horizontal mounting, go with Gentle Typhoons, and the best imo of the ones you listed is the Multiframe. Now between PWM and standard.... its up to you, most mobos out there only have 1 or 2 4pin pwm headers, most of the time for CPU fans, so check your mobo first, specially if the mobo can control the fans. The easiest would be a fan controller and just undervolt the fans depending on your needs and conditions.

Thanks for the tips! The Noiseblockers are indeed quite expensive, and might turn out to be overkill really considering the not quite silent GPU of mine (GTX 560 Twin Frozr III)? The Scythe Gentle Typhoons are priced more attractively in comparison. Which GT would you choose considering my PC's profile (i.e., taking into the account the CPU and GPU cooling and that I'm overclocking the CPU)?


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 2:40 pm 
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Hmm, where to start.

First, replace all the stock Antec fans with quieter ones. Any of those listed above will be quieter. All are 120mm.

Second, soft-mount the hard drives, preferably in the lower cage, where they will share airflow with the power supply.

Third, your video card will be far and away the loudest part of your system (unless you choose a loud power supply, easy to do). Consider replacing its heat sink with an Accelero with a quiet fan strapped to it.

The motherboard you've chosen pretty much requires a PWM CPU fan (it will run a 3-pin fan, but only at full speed). Similarly, it's designed for a PWM chassis fan. The other fan headers are designed for 3-pin non-PWM fans. So you'll need a mixture.

I sense from your postings that you are either unfamiliar with or don't care about variable fan speed control. While it is easy to choose low-RPM fans and run them full tilt, you get a much quieter system using either UEFI/BIOS or SpeedFan speed control. With this motherboard, you will get that control only on the 4-pin PWM headers. Of course, you can also use a hardware speed controller such as the FanMate or NoiseMagic NMT-3, with 3-pin fans.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:28 pm 
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I will sugest something that will cost you no additional spending. The upper chamber of your p183 will have 3 heat sources. They are the CPU, the GPU and all the rest of the components combined. The job is to get air flowing past these heat generators and carrying the heat to the outside of the chassis. The CPU and GPU have their own private heat exchange fans and the other components don't need fans. If you used only one fan on the front of the chassis, and block the noise leak on the top, the air will exit out all the unblocked holes on the back of the chassis and thus pass by all your heat generators.

To ensure adequate air flow with the least noise some measure of science is prudent.

Generally you should:
-1- test your system and record the results
-2- make a change
-3- retest and compare the results

These are good tools:

CPUBurn - processor stress software x4 for your quad core CPU
FurMark - to stress the GPU
GPU-Z - to monitor GPU temperature and fan speed
ASUS PC Probe - to monitor CPU temperature and fan speeds

Have fun...


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:38 am 
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Arbutus wrote:
I will sugest something that will cost you no additional spending. The upper chamber of your p183 will have 3 heat sources. They are the CPU, the GPU and all the rest of the components combined. The job is to get air flowing past these heat generators and carrying the heat to the outside of the chassis. The CPU and GPU have their own private heat exchange fans and the other components don't need fans. If you used only one fan on the front of the chassis, and block the noise leak on the top, the air will exit out all the unblocked holes on the back of the chassis and thus pass by all your heat generators.

So if I understand you correctly, blocking the top vent will improve the airflow? Should I use only one fan at the front though?


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 2:21 am 
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Quote:
So if I understand you correctly, blocking the top vent will improve the airflow? Should I use only one fan at the front though?


The issue with the unused vent is that it allows air to enter the chassis though the top, bypassing the cpu heatsink and other components you want to cool, so blocking it is a good idea, unless you want to place a fan on it. As for the front fans, it depends on how you`ll be arranging the components inside. Many p183 owners prefer to place the hard drives at the bottom (look at the "boring but silent" link for example) so that the top compartment doesn`t have to deal with the air restriction caused by the drives plus any heat they produce. The psu fan will be pulling air from the front, cooling the drives. If you`re not happy with their temperatures , then you could consider adding a fan at the lower front intake.

Regarding fans and fan control, here`s what you could do: Use a single pwm fan on the cpu heatsink controlled by the motherboard (I don`t think you could use the 14cm Noctua fan as a case fan so maybe keep that on the cpu heatsink) . You could then use the spare Noctua fan as an intake/exhaust along with any other fans of your choice. You could slow down these using a couple of Zalman fanmates of the Noctual low noise adapters you already have.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 2:43 am 
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ntavlas wrote:
Quote:
So if I understand you correctly, blocking the top vent will improve the airflow? Should I use only one fan at the front though?


The issue with the unused vent is that it allows air to enter the chassis though the top, bypassing the cpu heatsink and other components you want to cool, so blocking it is a good idea, unless you want to place a fan on it. As for the front fans, it depends on how you`ll be arranging the components inside. Many p183 owners prefer to place the hard drives at the bottom (look at the "boring but silent" link for example) so that the top compartment doesn`t have to deal with the air restriction caused by the drives plus any heat they produce. The psu fan will be pulling air from the front, cooling the drives. If you`re not happy with their temperatures , then you could consider adding a fan at the lower front intake.

Thanks. I'm considering putting a fan in the top, if it makes a difference cooling-wise at least. Depends how much noise it'll actually add, but like I explained before I don't need the PC to be dead silent (it'll reside in my living room) :)


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 3:18 am 
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If you can find it locally the Arctic Cooling F12 PWM fan can be good value for money and has built-in PWM fan sharing, that it is that the fans can be chained together without the need to buy any additional cables. The F12 is a very quiet fan at minimal revs. Bearing in mind that you have both an overclocked performance CPU and GPU you could consider an F12 in the rear-exhaust and top-exhaust positions and maybe one on the CPU, redeploying the displaced existing fans as additional intakes. This setup would give you a quiet idle, but under gaming conditions would automatically increase airflow which would keep the CPU and GPU temps down. It would also help to reduce the speed that the GPU fans would need to run at, and the associated noise.

Your motherboard actually has very good BIOS PWM fan controls. Using PWM fans you can select a Silent, Standard or Turbo mode or even a manual mode if you wish. Silent mode will keep fan speeds to the minimum.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 3:27 am 
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lodestar wrote:
If you can find it locally the Arctic Cooling F12 PWM fan can be good value for money and has built-in PWM fan sharing, that it is that the fans can be chained together without the need to buy any additional cables. The F12 is a very quiet fan at minimal revs. Bearing in mind that you have both an overclocked performance CPU and GPU you could consider an F12 in the rear-exhaust and top-exhaust positions and maybe one on the CPU, redeploying the displaced existing fans as additional intakes. This setup would give you a quiet idle, but under gaming conditions would automatically increase airflow which would keep the CPU and GPU temps down. It would also help to reduce the speed that the GPU fans would need to run at, and the associated noise.

Your motherboard actually has very good BIOS PWM fan controls. Using PWM fans you can select a Silent, Standard or Turbo mode or even a manual mode if you wish. Silent mode will keep fan speeds to the minimum.

Damn, the F12 PWM is cheap. How's it compare to Scythe Slip Stream PWM though?? Do you see any drawbacks to using PWM fans with my mobo compared to using a fan controller instead?


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:07 am 
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I have used both the F12 and the Scythe Slip Stream SY1225SL12LM-P. In a working system, I am not sure you would see much difference between them. That's partly because both the F12 and the Scythe at idle can run around 400/500 rpm or less, depending on ambient temperature.

The advantage of PWM is that it is thermal control, the fan speed is controlled by how hot the CPU is, and even how hot individual cores are. So at idle, when system load is less the fan speed drops to a fairly low level. Under load, the fans will speed up, and under a heavy gaming load I would expect to see something around 1100 rpm, maybe 1200 rpm if you were deploying the 3 F12 fan setup suggested.

With a fan controller, I guess you would turn the fans down when the system was idling, up again for gaming, down again for idling, up again for gaming... Or set the fans to a level which would be much higher than the PWM idle speed but enough to contain CPU and GPU temps under gaming loads.

However, given the relatively low cost of the F12 and the excellence of your motherboard's PWM fan controls I would say that you ought to consider PWM control as a first option.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:43 am 
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Hmm, now I'm really uncertain regarding PWM. I've got advice pointing in both directions (the other being fan controller) :/


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:54 am 
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If your motherboard features good fan control then I agree pwm should be your first option. Not that you can`t get automatic fan control with 3 pin fans but that would require a dedicated fan controller with temperature sensors.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:23 am 
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OK thanks. Just worried that PWM won't work well in practice, as I lack experience with it. Gotta check if I can utilize it for the CPU fans. Maybe it's just not enabled in the BIOS currently.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:36 am 
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It`s likely that the motherboard won`t be able to control the 3 pin Noctua fans that came with the heatsink (that`s what pwm fans are for). You could still use the 12cm Noctua as a case fan. If you decide to add a fan to the bottom compartment cooling the hdds, a Noctua with the ULNA would do a fine job.

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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:42 am 
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ntavlas wrote:
It`s likely that the motherboard won`t be able to control the 3 pin Noctua fans that came with the heatsink (that`s what pwm fans are for). You could still use the 12cm Noctua as a case fan. If you decide to add a fan to the bottom compartment cooling the hdds, a Noctua with the ULNA would do a fine job.

Ah true, they're not PWM :]


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 7:28 am 
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aknuds1 wrote:
So if I understand you correctly, blocking the top vent will improve the airflow?
If you don't block the top vent then you probably will have too much air exiting at that region of the chassis and not enough air exiting at the GPU area.

aknuds1 wrote:
Should I use only one fan at the front though?
There is only one fan position at the front in the upper chamber.


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 7:50 am 
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Arbutus wrote:
If you don't block the top vent then you probably will have too much air exiting at that region of the chassis and not enough air exiting at the GPU area.

Thanks, useful knowledge!


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 1:47 am 
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Hi, this is my build based on similar components. I only blocked the top vent and removed the middle HDD cage so I could install intake cooler.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Could use some advice regarding Antec P183 V3
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:17 am 
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The last picture posted is a very good example of how you could setup a p183 build. It contains most of the advice posted in this thread.

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