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 Post subject: PSU?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:32 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:26 pm
Posts: 9
Hi,

My PC is about 5 years old. I've upgraded it once to an ASUS A7V333 board about 2/3 years ago and am about to upgrade it again with a new hard drive. I run it in a music studio and, although the PSU has always been noisy, it's never bothered me. I'm going to start recording vocals in the studio so now need the PC to be as quiet as possble so, when I'm upgrading my hard drive, i thought I might as well get a quiet PSU/fan at the same time.

Being a complete novice to this sort of thing, is there anything I need to match up for a new PSU? ie Voltage, wattage, rating, physical size etc with my existing PSU?? Help!!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 2:56 pm 
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Location: UK
Hi Jack, Welcome to SPCR.
In terms of PSUs almost all generic PCs use the "ATX" (physical) size standard which gives the height, width, depth and rear mounting screw positions. Some PSUs are longer (extend deeper in to the case) which can be a problem in short cases with long optical drives. There is also an "sfx" (also sometimes called mATX) standard, the PSUs are a lot smaller and less common/more expensive, I doubt you have/need one. The connectors tend to be backwards compatible, i.e. newer PSUs will plug in to older systems but is not always the case the other way round. The newest systems having 24pin ATX and 4 (or now even 8 ) pin ATX 12V, SATA and PCIe (1,2 or now even 4 of 6pin for GFX card(s)) which older supplies may not have. You can get adaptors in most directions but it's not an ideal solution and you need to look at the capacity of the PSU. In the past the total capacity of the PSU was split fairly evenly across the 3.3V, 5V and 12V rails, modern PC now have the majority of their load on the 12V line and it's taken a while for PSUs, especially cheap ones, to catch up to this fact. Take a look at SPCRs measure of power distribution. In powering a modern PC it is almost entirely the 12V line that needs to be looked at, especially in this age of high powered graphics cards especially in SLI/crossfire.
All of which is interesting but in your case not relevant as I'm 99.9% certain your CPU is powered off the 5V line as my Asus A7N8X is and the A7V333 lacks the 12V ATX connector. In my case confirmed by monitoring voltages when going from idle to full CPU load, the 5V drops and the 12V rises.
I recently had to get a new PSU and looked at the 2 main favourites round here of Seasonic S12 and Antec NeoHE. From airflow point of view the NeoHE would have been better in my case but it's limited to 70w on the 5V line and my overclocked CPU is probably up around 90w! I went with Seasonic S12 380 (rated 130w on 3.3+5V) and it mostly runs it's 120mm fan at minimum speed around 800rpm, which is pretty damn quiet. As it works fine for me I suspect it would work well for you too, possibly a little louder if you have no rear case fan. There are plenty of other options and we could make more suggestions if you let us know what's available in your area (at what prices) and some details of your PC, eg CPU, graphics card, case, fans etc.
Regards, Seb

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i7 2600k under NH-C14 w/2xTY-140PWM fans, P8P67Deluxe, 8GB RAM, GTX560Ti OC w/TwinTurbo II and BIOS fanspeed mod. 2x120GB HyperX 3K RAID 0 & 2TB EARX in Scythe QuietDrive outside case. Antec Signature 650 fan swapped. CoolerMaster 201C with 2x92 + lower 92mm fan out rear, holes-in-floor and mesh top+front intakes.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:08 pm 
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Thanks very much Seb!

My PC runs on an AMD 1.6 CPU. The graphics card is nothing special at all if I remember rightly as I've never used the machine for games (I'll have a proper look later and post the spec). I'm pretty sure the case is ATX (how can I tell for sure?)

I'm in UK so I'd probably order online...

I'll have a look tonight to see if I can see any serial numbers etc on any of the parts.

Thanks again Seb!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 6:07 am 
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Location: UK
Hi Jack, no problem. As you have low(ish) power CPU and (probably) very low power graphics I don't think it's going to matter much what case/fans you have unless you are aiming for very quiet PC.
I got my Seasonic from ebuyer generally have large choice at low prices but customer service may not be the best.
Currently S12 380 OoS but S12 330 (£34) is in and more than ample for your system, Scan have S12s (380 - £40).
Seb

_________________
i7 2600k under NH-C14 w/2xTY-140PWM fans, P8P67Deluxe, 8GB RAM, GTX560Ti OC w/TwinTurbo II and BIOS fanspeed mod. 2x120GB HyperX 3K RAID 0 & 2TB EARX in Scythe QuietDrive outside case. Antec Signature 650 fan swapped. CoolerMaster 201C with 2x92 + lower 92mm fan out rear, holes-in-floor and mesh top+front intakes.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 3:08 pm 
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Hi Seb,

Well i've finally got round to changing my Hard drive and it's not my psu thats loud it's the CPU fan. Any recomendations?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 4:06 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:26 pm
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scratch that....I've just unplugged my CPU fan and the PSU is still quite noisy so I'm going to replace both...!any suggestions for a cpu fan?

Also, do psu's come with all the cabling ready to plug straight in?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 4:14 pm 
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Just noticed as well that the seasonic psu has sata connectors and my hard drives/motherboard are pata - does this make a difference? Argh! so many questions!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 4:20 pm 
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Location: UK
The Seasonic S12 has power connectors for both SATA and (P)ATA hard drives (read the review here).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:20 am 
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thanks Jaganath!

Looking at the pics of the PSU, it's fan is positioned differently to my current one. On my existing one, the fan is on the same side of the psu as the plug socket - will this affect it? ie. if I replace it, the fan will be facing the case as far as i can make out???


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:22 am 
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OK, I think I get it - the fan is on the bottom... :roll:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 1:36 am 
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Location: Poland
You've got CPU on socket A, right? So I'd recommend a Thermalright heatsink like SI-97 with any of the SPCR favorite fans like Nexus or Scythe (92mm would be enough), or Scythe Katana (Cu or Alu). Scythe will probably be considerably cheaper. For a real budget solution, but still not that bad, you could go for Arctic Cooling Copper Silent 3 - but that's only if you wanna play Scrooge ;) You could also get yourself a software tool like SpeedFan or Motherboard Monitor to be able to control the speed of your new CPU fan. Most probably it will be too loud at max rpm, and you will not need it max rpm anyway. Katana comes with a back mounted controller. A few dives under your desk a day never hurts and keeps you in shape ;)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 6:58 am 
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Thanks for the tips! Where would I get this stuff (the heatsink and a nexus fan) for delivery here in the UK?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:04 am 
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Location: Poland
Errrr, your favorite local store for PC geeks? I don't know - I'm not in UK. Thermalright and Scythe products are widely available all over the planet. Heck, you could even get them in Mars City ;) AC is a v popular company across Europe (continental) so I don't think it will be difficult to get any of them. I haven't seen a Nexus in these parts, but I guess you can get them in UK. Maybe ax some friendly Britons lurking around ;) Plenty of them here :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:21 am 
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Location: UK
Thermalright SI-97A (Socket A/754/939) Heatsink
http://www.tekheads.co.uk/s/product?product=604126
Scythe "KATANA" 2 Heat Pipes CPU Cooler
http://www.beast-pc.com/pd_scythe.cfm
Nexus 19.2 dBA 92mm Fan
http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_2577.html


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:42 am 
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Cheers guys - so which is the best option - the heatsink+fan or the all in one scythe? I'm not too concerened about it being really quiet - just needs to be quiter than what I've got at the moment!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:45 am 
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Location: UK
The stock fan on the Katana is pretty quiet, I'd get that.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:47 am 
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Location: Poland
Personally - I'd go for Katana. You'll also be able to switch to other platforms w/o fuss. With Thermalright you'd have to buy special retainers to switch to, say, C2D. Katana is also considerably cheaper (where I live!). But that's all my personal opinion and the way I'd go.


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