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 Post subject: Building a high end system. Is it possible to keep quiet?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 5:20 am 
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These are my choices so far..

CPU: Core 2 Duo http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16819115003R
Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813188009
Ram: (undecided)
Video: 8800GTX (exact model suggestions welcome)
PSU: (want something quiet suggestions welcome)
Case: P180 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129154
DVD: Samsung (supposed to be quiet) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16827151136
HDD: 2X Raptor 150GB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16822136012

Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. I am new to silent PC's so im not going to be offended if you go against everything i got :P


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 8:33 am 
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Welcome to SPCR!!

IMO, a couple questions are required before any definite suggestions can be made. Do you plan on overclocking the CPU? Do you plan on doing SLI (i.e. using two graphics cards at once)? What kind of games do you plan on playing that will warrant such a high end graphics card? What kind of cooling will you have on your CPU?

If you do plan on overclocking your processor, you should look into higher end RAM (DDR2-800 or DDR2-667), probably from OCZ, G.Skill or some other quality manufacturer known for overclockable RAM. If not, some Value RAM (DDR2-533) from Patriot, pQi or something like that will do.

If you're not going to do SLI, a Seasonic 500W PSU would be perfect. If you're planning on adding another 8800GTX in the future, you might want to consider getting the Seasonic 600W PSU. Either the S12 or M12 versions are fine. Corsair HX520W (520W) and HX620W (620W) models are also very good.

Two Raptors will not be quiet even if they are the newer quiet versions and are housed in a P180. I'd suggest only one 150GB Raptor for operating system/applications and a 500GB Western Digital SE16 drive.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 9:59 am 
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I forgot to mention the raptors will be in raid 0.
I am interested in noise reduction but I dont want it to interfere with performance.

I will be using air cooling for everything, I probably wont overclock but I like having the opportunity to do so if i choose. I might get 2 8800's and use SLI right off the bat, or i might buy the 2nd card later.

I play Battlefield, I play lots of stuff.. I just want it to all run at high resolution and as fast as possible. I will use this comp for new games that arent out yet.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:26 am 
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Location: Denmark
The only things I'd be worried about is the gfx and the raptors. I think you'll be able to cool the former relatively quiet using a Zalman CF900 after marked cooler though.

You can easily overclock your e6600 while still keeping it quiet. I can run mine at 3,0 ghz at stock voltages. It gets hotter the faster it goes (quite naturally) but at 3,0 I'm still able to cool it quietly enough that I can't hear it over my hdd. (which is quite noicy though, as it resides in an aluminum case without a suspension system). The only thing you should worry about is getting a good cooler for it (Scythe Ninja or the like, personally I like my Scythe Mine).

If you insist on both raptors I think you'll be able to get to the point where they are the thing that's left that you'll hear (of course if you get some quieter suspended hdds you'll start hearing other things...).

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http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... 834#394834


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:37 am 
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Raptor idle noise is very low and they don't vibrate a lot, so the only thing you have to worry about is seek noise.

And what resolution are you going to run? 2560x1600 is still playable with one 8800GTX even wtih AF and HDR, for 1600x1200 its more than enough. Future proofing is very rarely worth the money, once a 8800GTX is unable to perform good enough you can most likely get a new card which will be faster than two 8800 in SLI for the same money as a second 8800GTX.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:47 am 
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2560x1600 on a dell 30" or something better if it exists?

i require constant 60FPS or i get upset ive heard 1 8800 isnt enough for high resolutions on elder scrolls.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:57 am 
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Two 8800GTX might be a good idea then. Have a look at the 30" apple cinema display, it's a very nice screen. I've have not tried the Dell.

You should also overclock or get a core 2 extreme if you do SLI with 8800GTX, i think i read somewhere that wih a slower cpu it might work as a bottleneck for two 8800GTX in SLI. Might want to check on that though. If you can't find info on that, then im probably wrong.

Overclocking is easy, kind of like clicking a few buttons to upgrade from a pinto to a porsche. I would have said lamborghini, but comparing an overclock to that would mean it's unstable :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 11:29 am 
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Im being recommended by many others to move up to 800Watts if i choose to use 8800's in SLI. Any recommendations for a (semi) quiet 800Watt PSU?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 12:41 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2006 9:56 pm
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Location: United States
Pc Power and Cooling Silencer 750w Quad, is the only relatively quiet power supply on Nvidias 8800gtx SLI approved list.

In the P180 with the 8800 the GTX you need to remove the top hard drive cage due to the lengith of the card. But if your planing on SLI then I would consider looking for a case with better airflow around the videocards, due to people had heat issues using X1900XTX's in Crossfire in the P180. I'm not sure if it was a lack of air flow or a heat recirculation issue but it should still be taken into consideration.

With your mobo I would buy a Thermalright SI-120 or SI-128 and a Scythe (Fluid dynamic) or Panaflo 120mm fan for cooling, that way you should be able to not have to use the chipset fan and still have a great performance vs noise raitio. (Fluid dynamic bearings hold up better in high heat situations and are much less noisy then ball bearing fans.) The 8800GTX and GTS use a different heat sink mounting setup so there are no 3ed party coolers available at the moment, so that is a issue.

And why not consider the Seagate drives with perpendicular recording technology almost as fast as the 10,000 rpm drives and they only run at 7200 rpm and cost much less money.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 12:46 pm 
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The thing is.. nothing desktop quality is "almost as fast" as the top quality raptor.
At least thats how i interpret it.
check it out:
http://www23.tomshardware.com/storage.h ... 4&chart=34


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 1:20 pm 
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Location: California, US
CosmosCR wrote:
Im being recommended by many others to move up to 800Watts if i choose to use 8800's in SLI. Any recommendations for a (semi) quiet 800Watt PSU?


800 Watts is ridiculous IMO. You can easily handle two 8800's on a 600W PSU. Get a 700W if you really want to play it safe. If you're buying from Rosewill or some other poorly manufactured PSU, then I'd suggest going for over 700W. But for Seasonic, Fortron, Corsair, and other reputable manufacturers (where 600W really means 600W), then a 600W should be enough.

Seriously, an 8800GTX only uses about 150W under load (I think the nVidia's numbers were 130-170). Anandtech had 300W of consumption (from the outlet, not output from the PSU) for a high end system with an 8800GTX installed. Even with nVidia's maximum of 170W, an SLI 8800 setup will only draw 340W. With 160W (very generous here) for the rest of the system, you're still looking at a power usage of 500W.

A 700W PSU would mean that even at the highest possible voltage draw, you're still only running about 70% of your PSUs capacity. More than likely, your power consumption under load will be closer to 400W (57% of a 700W PSU).

With only two graphics cards, you should never need more than a 700W PSU. Max wattage allowed by a PCIe x16 slot is ~225W. With two graphics cards there, you have a 450W power draw. Adding in 150W for the rest of the system and you're looking at 600W or 86% of a 700W PSU's capacity.

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Mine: Antec NSK3480 w/EA 380W, i5-750, Gigabyte P55M-UD4, Sapphire 5750, 4GB DDR3, 60GB OCZ Agility & 500GB Seagate 7200.8, Xigmatek HDT-S964


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 1:44 pm 
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CosmosCR wrote:
The thing is.. nothing desktop quality is "almost as fast" as the top quality raptor.
At least thats how i interpret it.
check it out:
http://www23.tomshardware.com/storage.h ... 4&chart=34


Just because the Raptor can transfer data faster doesn't mean your computer's performance will be that much better. Numbers such as IO/sec or MB/s of the drive can be very misleading. In this PCWorld review, http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,12555 ... ticle.html , the Seagate drive matched a Raptor X's speed in trasferring a large 3GB file. The time difference was on the order of 2-3 seconds. For smaller files such as read-writes for games and such (assuming 500kB), the performance difference will be on the order of 0.5 of a milisecond. Basically, the performance advantage is negligible.

Its like saying that because you drive a Porche and you can get to 180 mph that you can get to work or school faster. In the real world, with traffic (i.e. CPU, RAM, FSB lag), there's no real advantage except for a few seconds when loading a game or transferring a large file.

Another article that support this fact:
http://www.anandtech.com/storage/showdo ... =2760&p=10

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Mine: Antec NSK3480 w/EA 380W, i5-750, Gigabyte P55M-UD4, Sapphire 5750, 4GB DDR3, 60GB OCZ Agility & 500GB Seagate 7200.8, Xigmatek HDT-S964


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 1:53 pm 
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Yeah, but driving to work is a lot more fun with a Porsche than a Hyundai, even if you don't get there any faster :wink: In the real world, a bike is probably the fastest. You can ride over the cars :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 5:48 am 
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Can anyone reccomend a quiet CPU heatsink/fan for the processor i have picked out?

And if I shouldnt get raptors.. whats a good quiet alternative thats still fast?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 6:36 am 
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Hello,

Please check the recommended HSF list for specifics, but the Scythe Ninja is considered the best.

Ditto for the hard drives -- probably the Western Digital SE16 models? You can listen to recordings of the various units.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 5:21 am 
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While I have not had any experience with the 8800 series cards yet, I would recommend the highest watt PSU you can afford. Seasonic 600 watt PSU is a nice unit and might do what you want, but as an OEM with experience on mild to high performance systems, I can tell you that one was not enough to adequately power an '840' P4 3.2 dual-core Extreme Edition with a single 7900GTX card. Naturally, half the problem was the 840 processor itself. Those bastards can consume close to 300watts itself, a Core2 Duo around 3.0ghz should consume less than 90watts, so you'll be fine with a single card. But if you add a 2nd 8800GTX down the line you'll exceed the limits of that PSU.

85-100 watts for Core2
185-220watts for 8800gtx
15watts for each HDD
10watts for Optical Disc Drive

For arguments sake, you're around 400watts, perfectly safe for a single card setup but add a 2nd card and you're right at the limit. Seasonic PSUs are solid units, but their peak rating is not very stable. Hell, most [if not all] power supplies aren’t. There’s a reason why some PSUs are carrying a ‘Quad-SLI Certified’ sticker. But the choice is yours, noisier power supply with enough hutzbah to hold it’s own months from now or a quieter one now and pay for another down the line.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 6:54 am 
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Has it ever been decided whether or not you can use two PSUs in one system? Let's say one going to the MOBO and drives, the other running two SLI cards?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 6:59 am 
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Nothing stops you from using two PSUs except lack of space, you only need a small adapter for the ATX plug to make both PSUs turn on at the same time. Basically just a "green-wire" y-splitter.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 8:16 am 
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Quote:
one was not enough to adequately power an '840' P4 3.2 dual-core Extreme Edition with a single 7900GTX card. Naturally, half the problem was the 840 processor itself. Those bastards can consume close to 300watts itself


What? Do you mean this chip? The TDP on that is 130W, not 300W. No CPU on earth could handle 300W, the power density is just too high, the chip would melt. Even with LN2 cooling I'd be surprised if it was possible.

Quote:
But if you add a 2nd 8800GTX down the line you'll exceed the limits of that PSU.

85-100 watts for Core2
185-220watts for 8800gtx


According to nVidia TDP of 8800GTX is 180W and no review that I know of has managed to duplicate this in real life, more like 150W.

Quote:
Has it ever been decided whether or not you can use two PSUs in one system? Let's say one going to the MOBO and drives, the other running two SLI cards?


Even with today's power consumption 2 power supplies are unnecessary. A single Enermax Galaxy will handle any rig that any sensible person will ever build.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 12:40 pm 
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looking at the ninja scythe.. it looks like it would only work if the case was on its side.. My case will be vertical.

I say this because heat pipes work by using gravity to bring the water in the pipes to the CPU, which wouldn't happen properly if the case was in the normal orientation. (right?)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 12:46 pm 
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Modern heatpipes work even upside down. Very slightly less efficient, but not much. I did not notice any difference in temps after putting my case standing after it was on its side for a day or two after installing the ninja. If anything its cooler because air flows more naturally throught he fins while its vertical.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 3:43 pm 
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I want to kick you in the nuts for getting my dream computer :( life isnt fair. Why did I have to born so Poor :(

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 8:02 pm 
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jaganath wrote:
What? Do you mean this chip? The TDP on that is 130W, not 300W. No CPU on earth could handle 300W, the power density is just too high, the chip would melt. Even with LN2 cooling I'd be surprised if it was possible.


Is that so? http://techreport.com/reviews/2005q2/pe ... ex.x?pg=16 130watts total? I doubt that. Look at the list, a 660 aka 3.6ghz Prescott consumed 235 total power drain. Switching out to a 840 caused the power drain to jump an additional 78watts, to 313. IF that were true, it'd jump maybe 40watts tops over a 660. More like 130watts per core.

http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=11 ... ert&pid=13
Quote:
On the flip side, at idle, the new Prescott-based 3.73 GHz XE is using 143 watts. Once we push the processors to a full load, the power on the 660 processor goes up to 207 watts while the 3.73 GHz XE uses 222 watts!


By your logic, I'd have to start calling Seasonic trash, as their 600watt PSU could not maintain stability for a 'mear' 130w CPU and a 180watt GPU. Don't go by numbers from Intel’s website, their web designers do not know any of the product lines or care. I should know, as an Intel Premier Partner I've actually talked to them a couple times about a couple inaccuracies and I can tell you first hand that they did not know what I was talking about, nor cared.

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My rebuilt almost silent Antec 3000B Intel QX6700 system


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2006 4:01 am 
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Quote:
130watts total? I doubt that. Look at the list, a 660 aka 3.6ghz Prescott consumed 235 total power drain. Switching out to a 840 caused the power drain to jump an additional 78watts, to 313.


Those are measurements of total system power draw, not individual CPU power draw.

http://techreport.com/reviews/2005q2/pe ... ex.x?pg=16

Quote:
Power consumption
We measured the power consumption of our entire test systems except for the monitor, at the wall outlet using a Watts Up PRO watt meter. The test rigs were all equipped with OCZ PowerStream 520W power supply units.


Also, they do not state whether they have accounted for inefficiency losses in the power supply. So take away about 150W for GFX card, HDD, motherboard and PSU inefficiencies and you get a clearer idea of the CPU power consumption.

The PCPerspective review also does not state whether they are measuring system or CPU power draw, so is of little utility until that is clarified.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2006 7:23 am 
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Well aware that it was total power draw, the point was that there should have not been a change of 78watts if there was so little difference in power consumption between the two.

And if you were to assume that your average power supply lost 20% of it's draw to conversion, that'd still only reduce the processor consumption by 15watts, which means that it’s still taking an additional 63watts to run vs a 660. As I said, I seriously doubt an 840 uses only 130watts total. :roll:

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My rebuilt almost silent Antec 3000B Intel QX6700 system


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2006 8:58 am 
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Yes, I quite agree the 840 EE is taking more than 130W, but at the same time less than 300W. The way Intel calculates TDP, it's quite possible and even probable that individual chips will exceed the stated power consumption (although not by such a massive margin as appears to be the case here); presumably Intel is relying on users to be aware of the thermal issues with Prescott and set their cooling up accordingly. Core 2's massively decreased power consumption vs Prescott-era chips should see the older chips become obsolete fairly rapidly.


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