It is currently Sat Jul 12, 2014 10:03 am

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 51 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:06 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Hi,

I've been reading about quiet computers for a while but now it has come for the time to build one.

As with most people I have done a lot of research but some questions cannot be answered on a forum because I found that people hadn't done it before. Or if they have, they haven't written about it. So I'm writing about my experiences in the hope it will be informative and be helpful for some people.

I started this build in late September 2012 and have only got round to writing about it now. I have taken some pictures along the way so I will be posting these as I get up to date with my progress.


Last edited by firehorse on Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Case - Lian Li PCQ08
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:09 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
So what case should I have?

A standard shuttle will hold a DVD drive and 2 3.5 inch hard disks in a large shoe box size. I liked the small size.

But they are not the quietest computers, especially when sitting next to them.
Also, you are pretty much stuck with what you get. Not much chance to upgrade or change them unlike a standard computer in a tower.

The closest size you can get to a shuttle is an mitx. But when I first started looking, there wasn't much there. Then Zotac came along with some really good motherboards. And there was Silverstone with their shoebox mitx cases SUGO5, SUGO6, SUG07.

However, although they took standard ATX PSU, they only had space for a slimline DVD Driver and one 3.5 inch hard disk, not 2 x 3.5 hard disks like the Shuttle which I had become used to. So this put me off buying a silverstone case for a while.

Then came along silentpcreview's review of the Lian Li PC Q08 - It allows up to 6 x 3.5inch hard disk in a small case or 4 x 3.5 inch hard disk with a full length graphics card and you still get to put in a full size DVD drive and one 2.5 inch drive.
This was the case for me.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/lianli-pcq08
Plus on silentpcreview, there was a silent build guide to make it quiet. Fantastic.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Silent_Ho ... e/Case_PSU


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
What CPU to go into it?

When I decided to go ahead with the build as of September 2012, the best cpu for me is the 3570K

A normal expected overclock is from 3.4GHz to 4.5GHz (+32%)
Not as good as a Sandy Bridge but it makes up for it by using less power.
You can reduce temperatures by 'deliding' it but I decided against it. The hassle just wasn't worth the performance gains. E.g 4.5GHz to 5.0GHZ, about 10% gain, I don't think it would be really noticeable in real life.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Motherboard - Asus P8Z77-I Deluxe
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:19 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
So which motherboard?

I decided to go with the ASUS P8Z77-I Deluxe.

In this review, the P8Z77-I came out better than the Asrock Z77E-ITX
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2012/0 ... shootout/8

There are some forums posts where the Asrock comes out faster than the Asus.

One big consideration is that the cpu socket on the P8Z77-I is in a more central layout, so you could place bigger heatsink there.
I don't think you can get a Noctua NH-C14 onto a ASRock Z77E-ITX.

From here, the ASRock is limited to a NH-L12, AXP-140, Samuel 17, etc - All good, but the NH-C14 is better and I really liked the NH-C14 :-)
http://www.overclock.net/t/1271905/what ... k-z77e-itx

One thing about the ASUS P8Z77-I is that it only has 4 hard disk ports whereas the Lian Li - PC-08 case can house 4 hard disks + 1x2.5" disk with a long graphics card.
So how can I run 4 hard disks in the case?

As the DVD drive could run off a USB 2 interface, I thought of using the internal USB 2 header to connect the DVD drive, thus freeing up one more SATA port.

So I can use a SATA to USB converter that will clip onto the back of the DVD drive.
And I could use 1 of the esata ports on the back of the motherboard to drive another hard disk.
This means I could have 1 SDD and 4x 3.5 inch hard disks in the case

USB2 DVD
SATA3 SSD
SATA3 Hard disk 1
SATA2 Hard disk 2
SATA2 Hard disk 3
esata Hard disk 4


Last edited by firehorse on Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: What size PSU?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:21 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
What size of PSU should I get?

From here
http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages/ms ... iew,6.html
They use an i7 965 TDP of 130W (overclocked from 3.2GHz to 3.75GHz) with a HD 7850 - the graphics card I'm considering.
The 3570K has TDP of 77W
The system load was 254W, the 7850 card by itself was 106W and they recommend a PSU of 500W

From here
http://www.anandtech.com/show/5625/amd- ... islands/18
The system load (i7-3960X @ 4.3GHz ) of an overclocked 7870 (1150MHZ,5.4GHz) was 310 W

From here
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cpus/2 ... u-review/7
A 3570K over clocked to 5GHZ uses up 267W in a system that also has a GTX590 which is no power miser.

So anything over 400W would be fine.

If I allow for future expansion to a monster like a GTX590
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphi ... b-review/8
I would need about 500W


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: PSU - Lazer Kingwin LZP-550
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:25 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
So which PSU?

Now the problem with a Q08 case is that you need to fit a short PSU in it. Preferably 140mm one.

See the following review
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cases/ ... 8-review/2

However, there is a get out clause. Lian Li do a PSU extender so you can fit a longer psu in the case!

I did consider the Seasonic X-400 but as the PSU will be on its side, it won't be in a typical operating position to let the hot air flow out, so I decided I needed PSU with a fan.
I did consider the Seasonic X-650 but under the hotbox test, the Kingwin 550 came out much better.
I did consider the Seasonic X-1050 and Kingwin LZP-1000. I liked the fact there was no electronically generated noises. But they cost soooo much more!

Also, if you look at the power wastage for a typical operating range of 90W to 300W, the Lazer Kingwin 550 actually loses the least amount of power, which should mean it emits the least amount of heat for my typical operating conditions.

So after looking at a lot of PSUs on silentpcreview, I've settled on a Lazer Kingwin 550
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1203-page4.html

Impressive performance inside the hotbox. So it is basically fanless unless it gets really hot. Ideal for what I want.
The length is 170mm, - 60mm for the extender, only 110mm into the case - now it fits :-)

There is a concern that the fan is partially blocked but because it should be operating fanless most of time and I will point the fan input facing outside to the cool air so this should not be a significant factor.

After I purchased the Lazer Kingwin, silentpcreview reviewed the Enermax Platimax 600W.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1299-page5.html
That came out great, and would have been cheaper as well considering import charges of £27.40 on the LZP-550 (Totals of £164.13 vs £153.12 for the Enermax Platimax 600), but my consolation is least the LZP-550 still manages to beat it on least amount of energy wasted between 90-300W. :-)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: CPU Cooler - Noctua NH-C14
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:31 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
So which cooler is going to fit inside a Lian Li PC Q08?

A big headache here.
Basically a Scythe Samurai is one option that will fit. Also a thermalright AXP140 will also fit.
But the performance winner is the Noctua NH-C14.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1138-page6.html
With a decent bottom fan only - it matches many high end upright coolers, plus it will also cool the motherboard components
But will it fit?

Noctua themselves say it will not fit with lower fan only.
http://noctua.at/main.php?show=compatib ... =37&lng=en
LGA1155 Asus P8Z77-I Deluxe In high-compatibility mode only
Ooops, that's no good for me.

The location of the CPU socket and the daughter riser cards are factors.
No one has definitively said a Noctua NH-C14 will fit a Asus P8Z77-I inside a PC-Q08.

There is photographic proof a NH-C14 will fit a P8Z77-I
http://www.overclock.net/t/1241916/cool ... -deluxe/80

Someone put a NH-C14 onto a P8Z77-I into a Silverstone Sugo SG-08 - but the heatsink was aligned differently to how I was going to align it in the PC-Q08 case.

I joined a thread in which I came to the conclusion it might.
http://www.overclock.net/t/1277692/lian ... ir-cooling
So in the end I bought a NH-C14.

Fingers crossed at this stage.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Heatsink compound - Phobya HeGrease
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
So what heatsink compound?

After years of using the original Artic Silver 1 (I still haven't finished the 6.5g tube!) I thought it would be worth looking around to see if things have improved.

From an 80 way shootout
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?o ... itstart=12
You end up with Phobya HeGrease Extreme Thermal Compound, prolimiatech PK1, Tuniq TX3 & TX4

From a 17 way shootout,
http://www.maximumpc.com/article/featur ... e?page=0,1
Tuniq TX4 was good, beating the Artic Silver 5

From here
http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/ ... 012/1490/5
TX3, Artic silver 5 was good.

From here
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cooler ... html#sect0
Tuniq TX3 and TX4 was good, beating Artic Silver 5

The review bought the phobya hegrease to my attention.
http://skinneelabs.com/frostbite-hegrea ... um-review/

This person was thorough enough to try the thermal compounds at different contact pressures.
The results look consistent and puts the Phobya HeGrease second best to Indigo Xtreme, a liquid metal compound. Prolimatech PK-1 also came out well.

This person has a thorough review of Phobya HeGrease, AS5 and Indigo Xtreme
http://www.overclockers.com/forums/show ... p?t=694820
After this I decided to go for the Phobya HeGrease. Also it is difficult to get Prolimatech PK1, Tuniq TX3 and TX4 in the UK.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Memory Samsung 2x4GB DDR3 PC3-12800C11 1600MHz (MV-3V4G3D/US
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:06 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Onto memory chips.

From reading here
http://forums.tweaktown.com/memory/4844 ... ridge.html
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4503/sand ... est-ddr3/6
It doesn't look like anything much above 1333 or 1600 does very much to the speed of your PC overall performance.

But this one
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/memory ... dr3_4.html
Says anything up to 2400 would be slightly helpful.

More on memory
http://www.anandtech.com/show/6372/memo ... -gskill/14

After some searching, I came across this
http://www.overclock.net/t/1210482/sams ... discussion
So I got the Samsung - reasonable price too for such good performance - and it is low profile so it won't interfere with the Noctua NH-C14!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Graphics card - Sapphire Dual-X 1GB 7850
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Which graphics card?

This is a continually changing field.

I started out wanting a 6850, back in Dec 2010, then prices dropped and 6870 came into range without too much extra over a 6850.

I was going to go for a 6870 as on Hexus, that gave really good bang-per-buck
http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/graphics/ ... s/?page=12

But while I was searching, the price just dropped on the Sapphire Dual-X 1GB 7850 to £126+8 including postage.
At the time, September 2012, I decided to go for a AMD 7850 1GB.

From here, most games don't require more than 1GB for 1920 x 1200 (the screen I already have) and I'm not a serious gamer.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2011/0 ... b-review/7
1GB card is fine for 1920 x1200

Normally a 7850 doesn't overclock above 1150MHz/5.8GHz but this thread below says it is possible
http://forums.overclockers.co.uk/showth ... t=18389760
"It seems that 1200MHz core / 5800MHz mem @ 1.125v will be my 24/7 clocks. This offers the best balance of performance vs heat, power and noise"
"This provides roughly stock 7950 performance for half of the price"

When I received the Sapphire Dual-X 1GB 7850, I noticed it was quite 'short' card.
So I'm thinking a 'longer' graphics card cooler would let me cool it better and keep it quieter.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Graphics card cooler - Scythe Musashi
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:13 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Graphics card cooler?

From here
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article979-page6.html
The Scythe Musashi basically more or less keeps pace with the well known Acclero S1

This cooler was used to good effect in the SFF Gaming build on silentpcreview
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Silent_Ga ... de/GPU_RAM

And bascially fits in a tight space
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Silent_Ga ... de/Musashi
The 6870 was at load 34dbA and 90C
The system build was 21dbA for 95C GPU core or 24dbA for 87C core - much better than using a standard cooler.

From here
http://www.2tog.fr/technobidouilles/TEC ... Q08_e.html
I have proof that the Scythe Musashi fill fit into a Q08


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Sound proofing and dampening
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:14 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
What about sound proofing?

From here
viewtopic.php?t=60780&f=13
I thought it was really interesting having some sound dampening inside the Q08 case.
He uses butyl foam sound deadener.
The temperatures he gets are quite good.

I was going use AcoustiPack™ as reviewed by silentpcreview as they are available in the UK and seemed to work quite well.
But while hunting around I found a German company (King Mod) did custom sound dampening kit for the PC-Q08.
That will save me a lot of bother cutting things to the right size.

I also found a page here with an expert recommending something better than dynomat for dampening for cars.
http://forums.bit-tech.net/showthread.php?t=227685
http://www.caraudiodirect.co.uk/silent- ... r-kit.html

Looking at it, the material is for butyl material.
Silent Coat 2mm Damping Mat uses mass loading to lower panel resonance and absorb structural vibrations.
So if I think I want extra sound dampening, then I can order one of these parts.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Fans, fans and fans!
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:17 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Fans - a big headache

For the front panel - I decided from this review
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=62830
Noctua NF-P14 FLX 140mm Fan, 750-1200rpm

For the top blow hole, I decided from this review
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1266-page7.html
I decided to get the Scythe Gentle Typhoon GT120-13 1150rpm

For the cooler fan, I decided on this review
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1266-page3.html
This is a PWM fan so it can be controlled on the motherboard.

This gave a better cooling result than the Nexus, which itself was better than the PLX-14 on the Noctua NH-C14
Plus I could ramp up the speed if I ever wanted.

Because it is being mounted on the a top down Noctua NH-C14, the motherboard will benefit from a slightly larger airflow pattern.

Also the review said the Scythe Gentle Typhon GT120-14 1400 rpm had unpleasant noises when it was slowed down - not suitable.

After I have bought the TY150 - this review came out
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cooler ... html#sect0
Although they recommend the Corsair AF140 Quiet Edition, the TY150 does pretty well if you look at the noise vs cfm chart in detail.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: DVD drive and spreading the heatsink paste
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:21 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
DVD Drive

I was going for a Samsung SH-222BB SATA DVD Write Optical Drive, but based on reviews from newegg I decided to go for Asus 24x DVD±RW DRW-24B5ST SATA ReWrite which had 5 stars out of 3605 reviews rather than 4 stars out of 266 reviews.

For ages I have been spreading the heatsink compound across the whole cpu before putting the heatsink on top.
From here
http://forums.extremeoverclocking.com/s ... p?t=343346 - link to a youtube video.
I have now decided to do the pea method.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Starting the build
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Ok - parts start arriving.

I looked at the King Mod foam insulation - light foam - I don't think it will do the job.
So I've decided to return it and order something from the car audio store.

PC-Q08
Lovely case. Everything fits with precision.
But that case feels like it will scratch sooo easily.
Have to take extra care to keep all sharp tools away from the case while working on it.
Prepare to spend a lot of time taking the case completely apart and putting it back together again.
It deserves your time and attention.

After finding out that the King Mod foam wasn't for me, I took all the bits out of the case so I could do paper templates of the dampening material I needed.
That took a while.
Then as it was going to take a while before the dampening material was going to arrive, I thought I would do an initial assembly and run of the machine first to see if there were going to be any problems.

Starting with the case, I replaced the top blowhole fan with the Scythe Typhoon
I also replace the front fan with a Noctua PLX 14 that came with the NH-C14
It turns out the PLX-14 has 120mm distance mounting holes so I used wire tags to fasten the fan to the fan holder.
It was only later I remembered there should adaptors in the kit, and there it was when I looked again.
Still, I quite liked my idea of suspending it by wire ties.

Next the ASUS DVD drive goes in, along with the SATA-USB adaptor.

Looking at the heatsink next.
Mounting the TY150 fan. Best done with wire ties again.

Next putting the in the base of the NH-C14 onto the P8Z77-I was no problem.

I then put the NH-C14 onto the motherboard.
I noticed there was very little space for the memory modules so I put them in just before I installed the heatsink.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Small fingers required
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
After I installed the NH-C14, I went to connect the fan power.
Very tight squeeze, note to self, next time connect the fan power before connecting the heatsink, it makes life easier.
Hmmm … that chassis fan connector also looks like a very difficult fitting.

The chassis fan connector is to the left of the CPU fan connector you see coming out. It's behind the usb 2 ports. Fun huh!

Of course, a smaller heatsink would have made life a lot easier :D


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Installation procedures
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:26 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Some reviews of the Lian Li PC-Q08 and the installation procedure

http://lanoc.org/review/hardware/cases/ ... i-q-pc-q08
Motherboard - cpu, ram, heatsink.
Install hard drives
Hook up front panel
Secure psu then pulled it partway out to get access
Video card is last part to install
With the drive cage removed dropping the HD5770 in was cake

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/lia ... 864-5.html

Some modifications to carry out.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Silent_Ho ... y_and_Mods

But of course, it is never straightforward. That TY150 fan overhangs the motherboard so much, it is difficult to get to the screws underneath it to attach it to the case.
Solution, detach the fan while screwing in the motherboard.

The PSU LZP-550 is partially modular with fixed motherboard cables & 2xpcie for graphics cards.
In the accessories I use 1 of the 2 supplied SATA power cables which have 4 outlets each.
It also has 2 more pcie cables - not used - obviously for dual graphics cards.
And 2 x molex cable with 2 outputs on each - also not used in my computer.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Snag with the NH-C14 and the DVD drive.
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:32 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Snag with the NH-C14 and the DVD drive.

OK - It won't fit with the ASUS drive, it hits the top of the NH-C14

OK - If I remove the 'stealth part' front panel, I can move a dvd drive forward and make it flush with the front of the case.
Luckily the DVD drive is 'black' matching the Lian Li case - Phew.

OK - Now I can move the CPU cooler up to the 'top' of the case.

Another problem, the TY150 is too big to go on the NH-C14 inside a PC-Q08.
It needs another 10mm I think.

In theory, I could swap another 140mm fan in there but now it is just a hassle.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:36 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Great - Just after I buy the LZP-550 another silent cooler comes on the market.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1306-page5.html
In the hotbox it is better than the LZP-550 at 400W.

So, I can't use the TY150 as a cooler fan. I could use it as a chassis fan.

OK - The TY150 has a very strange mounting system.
Use either both left or both right holes and they are 120mm apart.
Use either both top or bottom set of holes and they are 140mm apart.
Either way, they offset the fan from the centre of any opening.
I've decided to use wire ties to 'centre' the fan.

Now another problem, the cable from the TY150 is shorter than the one from the NH-PLX14.
That means I can't lay the motherboard down flat and still have the front case fan cable connected the motherboard.
So I'm going to order a power cable extender to make life easier for myself.
But in the meantime, I will use the Noctua fan for the front.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Last edited by firehorse on Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: First firing up
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:41 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
The P8Z77-I has 2 fan headers. I need 2 case fans and a cpu fan.

After looking at the PSU - I decide I don't want a molex power cable coming out of the PSU just to have a converter to power the case fan.

The solution is to use a case fan splitter supplied by Noctua to power 2 fans, and the third fan can use the other case fan output from the motherboard.
Guess what - I will have to take the whole case apart just to put the splitter in! Remember the picture that required little fingers!

OK - plug everything and fire up. No video output. Panic!!!

Back to basics, remove things until it starts working.

I take out the graphics card and phew, get a video output from the onboard graphics.

Going to load up Windows 7, update drivers and see what's what.

It is very noisy by my standards. I thought the Shuttle was loud but this is even louder.
OK, the side panel is open and the fans are going at full speed, but still, it sounds louder than it should.

Vibration is felt on the side panels so I'm definitely going for the car audio dampening stuff.
Loved the PSU as the fan doesn't spin - no fan noise from the PSU - such a difference from the Shuttle psu.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
I'm going to put in the Noctua ULNA and see what the sound level is like.
I'm also going to put in a Zalman fan mate to reduce the fan speed of the top fan.

A good discussion on fans
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=65032&start=30

Top case fan, Gentle Typhoon on fanmate down to min speed.
Front case fan Noctua @ 800 rpm
Heatsink fan Noctua @ 800 rpm

OK - this is quieter than my Shuttle - sound is mainly whoosh from the fans rather than PSU fan or hard disk noise.
Leaning into 3-6 inches to the back of the PSU, I can hear the electronic noise, noise is almost inaudible above background noise by by 12 inches away.

Using the Asus TurboV EVO overclocking software, I did an Extreme overclock to 4818MHz but that crashed while running Prime95 for 5 minutes.

The electronic PSU noise was about twice as loud when running prime95 at 4841MHz after about 5 minutes, but PC crashed after that anyway.

I did a fast overclock to 4223 MHz - stable at Prime95, blend load, CPU 56, motherboard 33.

(note this is the CPU temp from the AI suite from ASUS, and not core temperatures as I have later learned).

I can hear the fan noise from the front so I will try to replace the front chassis fan with the thermalright and check noise and temperature.

Some info on the TurboV EVO here
http://www.techreaction.net/2012/06/28/ ... 7-v-pro/7/

Error codes and how to fix them if you are overclocking
http://techreport.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=79820


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:58 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
OK - I'm doing some testing.

I originally started testing with the PSU pushed into the case (psu case extender had not arrived yet), but I noticed if I pulled the PSU out the temperature got cooler.

More space for air from above to get 'down' and cool the heatsink. Interesting. Only in this particular configuration.

The difference is about 4C under load.

One thing l left out earlier is the DVD is such a tight fit against the NH-C14 that I could not use the USB3-SATA adaptor that plugs into the back of the DVD drive. I had to buy a right angle sata cable to fit into the DVD drive and a right angle power cable for the DVD drive. And then I had to buy a different converter from SATA to USB - and then buy a lead to convert the USB to USB header on the motherboard.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 4:16 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Some observations.

I'm very impressed by the temperatures that I block off the back of the computer and the PSU opening. The PSU was blocking most of its opening and it didn't seem to be doing much.

Temperatures still look ok.

The thermalright is pwm controlled so I set the rpm to 800rpm to match the Noctua.
I measure a set of temperatures - great.
Except I notice that when the temperature gets high, the thermalright fans spins up to 1100 or so and slows down again, I can't measure it directly against the Noctua which has a resistor in place and is at a constant speed.

So I think of using the Noctua UNLA to control the speed of the TY150. The ULNA adaptor is 3 pin, the TY150is 4 pin so I cut a slot in the ULNA so the TY150 4 pin fits into the ULNA .

Now - when I do a second run, the thermalright doesn't spin up - too low a voltage.
Great - I need to buy another Zalman fanmate.
Duly purchased before I can do more testing.

I also realise that because I have 'blocked' off the side panel where the psu is, I could then turn the psu around so the fan opening faces the cpu.
Because the fan never spins up, the psu can then act as an air intake for the cpu cooler!
It only works because the fan doesn't spin up. If the fan was constantly spinning as in the BeQuiet then this wouldn't work.
I found this lowered the temperatures by about 1C.

I ran some more results using Prime95
All well and good except, the load produced by Prime95 results are not consistent.
The cpu temp goes up and down in cycles.
And the longer you leave it, 1h, 2hr, 4hr, 8hrs, you will get different maximum temperatures. Any, I did a set of results the best I could.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Some results
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 4:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
I used Prime 95 for between 6-12 hours and HwMonitor to monitor the temperatures.

I used an ipad with DB Meter Pro to measure the dbA.

If I hold the ipad 1 meter away from the pc it wouldn't measure anything so the noise measurements are made with the ipad directly against the fans.

The side measurement was to measure any noise coming from the graphics card at the bottom of the case at the side. Also, that is the side that will 'face' my ear.
At the back, I wanted to measure noise coming from the PSU as well as the back - which is blocked up with paper at the moment.

It's winter in the UK so the room temp is about 19C during the day a lower during the night, but it is 19C by the time I get up the next day to take the temperatures.

Code:
Top fan     Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li
rpm              560     560     560     560     560     560     560     560
dba             61.5    61.5    61.5    61.5    61.5    61.5    61.5    61.5
Front fan   Lian Li Lian Li Scythe  Scythe  TY150   TY150   Noctua  Noctua
rpm              920     450    1050     430     950     550    1140     480
dba               64      62      62    60.5    64.5    61.5      63    60.5
Side dba          58    57.5    57.5    57.5    58.5    57.5    58.5    57.5
Back dba        58.5    57.5    58.5    57.5      58    57.5    58.5    57.5
Back PSU dba      58    57.5      59    58.5    58.5      58    58.5    58.5
TZ00              28      28      28      28      28      28      28      28
TZ01              30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30
Sysin             37      43      35      42              42      33      43
Cpuin             54      56      55      57      49      58      52      57
Auxin             56      56      55      58              57      51      57
Core 0            74      76      74      75      68      76      71      76
Core 1            81      82      79      81      77      82      78      83
Core 2            80      82      79      80      76      83      77      83
Core 3            77      79      78      79      73      80      75      80
Package           85      86      84      85      80      86      82      87
HD Assembly       27      34      25      35      25      33      27      34
HD Airflow        26      34      25      28      25      31      25      33
GPU               31      37      31      37      28      36      29      37


I do like the Scythe.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:40 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
It was taking a long time to gather the results using Prime95 and I needed a quicker way.

I found out about IntelBurn and decided to use that instead. I used a setting of 'very high' which uses 4GB of ram and 10 runs.

I also changed the monitoring software to HWInfo64.

The room I'm testing the Lian Li in has my Shuttle switched on most of the time.

For the record, the Shuttle SG41Plus noise levels are as follows
Front 58 dba
Side 66 dba
Top 59 dba
Back 65 dba
Note the sound levels are with the microphone of the ipad right next to the side of the computer.

The ambient sound I'm measuring below is basically the sound measured 1m away from the Lian Li with the microphone pointing away from the Lian Li. The Shuttle is switched on but is about 2 metres away.

I have 2 hard drives in the shuttle and with both of them whirring away, and the ICE fan, and the psu fan, and there are those ventilation grills on the side of the Shuttle which let the noise out so it is 66 dba.

With the latest results of the sound levels coming down to 56.5 from the side - it is going to be a lot quieter!

From the previous results, at the lowest speed, the TY150 was noisier than the other fans I dropped it out the next set of tests.

Code:
Intelburn
Top fan        Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li Lian Li  Scythe  Scythe  Scythe  Scythe
rpm                1140    1140     560     560     560     560     560     560    1050    1050     460     460
dba                65.5    65.5      62    61.5    65.5    65.5      62    60.5    65.5    65.5      61      61
Front fan       Noctua  Noctua  Noctua  Noctua  Scythe  Scythe  Scythe  Scythe  Noctua  Noctua  Noctua  Noctua
rpm                1110     480    1110     480    1050     430    1050     430    1125     480    1125     480
dba                  63    61.5    62.5    60.5      62    61.5    61.5    59.5      62    60.5      62    59.5
Side dba           59.5      58    58.5    57.5    58.5    58.5    57.5    56.5    57.5      57    57.5    56.5
Back dba           59.5    58.5    58.5    57.5    58.5    58.5    57.5      57    57.5    57.5    57.5    57.5
Back PSU dba       59.5    58.5    59.5    58.5    59.5    59.5    59.5    57.5      59    58.5    58.5    57.5
Ambient dba        55.5      55      55      55      55      55      55      55    54.5    54.5    54.5      54
Core 0               71      71      75      78      71      72      75      78      71      70      75      79
Core 1               80      80      83      85      80      80      83      86      79      79      83      86
Core 2               79      79      83      86      79      79      83      86      79      78      83      87
Core 3               77      77      80      83      77      77      81      83      79      75      79      83
Memory Ambient       30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30      30
Cpu package          80      80      84      86      80      80      84      86      79      78      83      87
Cpu IA cores         80      80      84      86      80      80      84      86      79      78      83      87
Cpu GT cores         55      56      58      60      55      55      58      60      53      52      57      61
Motherboard          29      34  27->32   30->39       30      34      33      40      28      32      31      39
Cpu                  70      70      73      76      70      70      73      76      69      69      73      77
Pch                  50      53      53  46-58       51      53      54      58      47      50      21      58
HD Assembly     20->23  22->25  23->25  24->29  19->21  22->25  21->23  22->29  20->22  22->24  23->24  24->29
HD Airflow      20->22  22->22  22->22  22->22  19->19  20->21  21->21       23 17->18  18->20  20->20  20->21
GPU                  26      29 26->28  29->34       28 28->30  27->30       36 25->26  27->29  26->28  28->35

Very interesting results. A complex interaction of sounds!

At the lowest speeds, the combination of the stock Lian Li at the top with the Noctua front chassis gives a result of 61.5dba and 60.5dba.
The combination of stock Lian Li at the top with the Scythe front chassis gives a result of 60.5dba and 59.5dba.
Does that mean the Scythe is quieter so less noise leaks through from the front to the top chassis fan?
When you look down the temperatures for the Scythe vs Noctua at the lowest speeds with the Lian Li stock top fan, there's almost no difference in the temperatures but the Scythe is quieter.

Also, at the lowest speeds, when you swap the Lian Li stock fan out for the Scythe (Noctua at the front), it gives a result of 61dba and 59.5dba
Does that mean the Scythe is quieter and less noise leaks out to the front making the Noctua quieter?

I was tempted to buy the Corsair 140 Quiet Edition, but looking carefully at the charts, I'm not sure it will be much quieter than the Scythe for a similar performance. If anyone else has both and can do a test I would be very interested to know.

So now I'm down to testing the heatsink fan to see if I can make it any quieter. Should I stick with the supplied Noctua or swap that one to a Scythe as well?
Of course I will want to test that at full speed and minimum speed so I need to buy a third Zalman fanmate.

After that, I will put in the sound dampening and measure the effects of that.
I had some great advice and service from the people at caraudiodirect.co.uk - With their advice I bought the starter kit which has a bit of everything in it.
It has 2mm butyl mass loading dampening sheets
It has 4mm foam for airborne noise
It has 15mm 'egg box' foam for absorbing even more airborne noise.

Now the blog has caught up with what I am doing currently and I'm waiting for the third Zalman fanmate before doing any more testing.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:28 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:45 am
Posts: 518
Location: 128.0.0.1
Did you install the 7950? If so, did you do a gaming benchmark? (heat-related, not FPS)

I had a setup similar to yours a couple of years ago, just with a mATX case.

Had a Scythe Top Down cooler that was ventilated by the PSU fan. Once I added a GPU into the mix - Radeon 4850 - things got uncomfortably warm and seeing as your CPU temps are already pretty high, you might want to check this sooner than later.

During the warmer summer months, the PSU got to hot to the touch and I did not feel comfortable with this setup any longer.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 8:09 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Hi,

tim851 wrote:
Did you install the 7950? If so, did you do a gaming benchmark? (heat-related, not FPS)

I had a setup similar to yours a couple of years ago, just with a mATX case.

Had a Scythe Top Down cooler that was ventilated by the PSU fan. Once I added a GPU into the mix - Radeon 4850 - things got uncomfortably warm and seeing as your CPU temps are already pretty high, you might want to check this sooner than later.

During the warmer summer months, the PSU got to hot to the touch and I did not feel comfortable with this setup any longer.


I've put in the 7850. You can sometimes just make it out under the mass of psu wires.

I did run furmark and the gpu temp went up and the fan went on, quite loudly in fact.

At the moment, at graphics card idle, the fan noise from the graphics card is unnoticeable because of the other noises.
However, once furmark gets started, it becomes very noticeable.
I'm thinking to test one thing at a time. My testing procedure has been changing as I'm going along.

The most likely game I will play is Skyrim so it might be something along those lines to test it. I may throw in some furmark or other graphics testing program for temp/noise comparisons. Also, I have the Scythe Musashi cooler waiting to go in.

Also, I'm wondering if some 'ducting' may improve the temperatures inside.

The temps are from running IntelBurn for 10 runs, which I don't anticipate doing during normal use. It's just an arbitrary 'consistent' benchmark for testing purposes.

The Zalman fanmate has arrived so I'll be trying to get some more results. At the moment, it is looking like I'm going to be ending up with 3 scythes in the computer.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 2:13 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
tim851 wrote:
Once I added a GPU into the mix - Radeon 4850 - things got uncomfortably warm and seeing as your CPU temps are already pretty high, you might want to check this sooner than later.

During the warmer summer months, the PSU got to hot to the touch and I did not feel comfortable with this setup any longer.

I agree with you. It is winter here in the UK so it is a cool 19C in a centrally heated house. It will be warmer in the summer and the temperatures will go up.
I will keep a closer eye on the temperatures. Maybe some warning software so I will turn the fans up a notch when the alarm sounds. Maybe different overclock profiles depending on what I'm doing.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Hot hot hot
PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 3:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
For my own benefit, a summary of the previous results:
At minimum rpm, for the top fan, the scythe is cooler and quieter than the stock Lian Li.
At minimum rpm, for the front fan, the scythe is quieter than the Noctua and the temperatures are similar.

Code:
Program               Idle       Idle  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn
Fans              All idle    All max    All max    cpu max    top max  front max    All min
Top fan            Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li
rpm                     560       1140       1140        560       1140        560        560
dba                    59.5         66         66       63.5       63.5         60       59.5
Front fan           Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua
rpm                     480       1115       1115        480       1115       1115        480
dba                    59.5       63.5       63.5       61.5       60.5       62.5       59.5
Cpu fan             Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua
rpm                     410       1100       1100       1100        490        490        490
Side dba               56.5       59.5       59.5       58.5       57.5       57.5       56.5
Back dba               56.5       59.5       59.5         60         57         57       56.5
Back PSU dba             57       60.5       60.5         60         58         59         57
Core 0                   43         32         68         72         79         79         83
Core 1                   46         30         78         82         87         86         93
Core 2                   45         31         76         82         87         86         91
Core 3                   46         35         74         79         84         84         89
Memory Ambient           30         30         30         30         30         30         30
Cpu package              45         35         78         82         87         86         94
Cpu IA cores             45         35         78         82         87         86         94
Cpu GT cores             39         35         51         57         61         60         66
Motherboard              30         24    22->28     25->37     30->33     24->29     25->33
Cpu                      36         24         68    20->71          77    19->76     22->84
Pch                      49         46         46    46->50     46->51     46->52     46->60
HD Assembly              26         20    20->23     20->26     26->26     20->22     20->27
HD Airflow               25         23    21->22     21->21     21->21     21->22     22->22
GPU                      29         25    24->28     27->36     28->31     25->26     25->31

Program               Idle       Idle  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn  Intelburn
Fans              All idle    All max    All max    cpu max    top max  front max    All min
Top fan            Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li    Lian Li
rpm                     560       1140       1140        560       1140        560        560
dba                    59.5       65.5       65.5       59.5         64       60.5       59.5
Front fan           Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua     Noctua
rpm                     475       1115       1115        475        475       1115        475
dba                    59.5       62.5       62.5       59.5       60.5       62.5       59.5
Cpu fan             Scythe     Scythe     Scythe     Scythe     Scythe     Scythe     Scythe
rpm                     440       1050       1050       1050        440        440        440
Side dba               56.5       58.5       58.5       56.5       57.5       58.5       56.5
Back dba                 57       58.5       58.5         57       57.5       57.5         57
Back PSU dba             58       59.5       59.5         58         59         59         58
Core 0                   43         36         73         77         84         88         93
Core 1                   45         34         81         86         94         97        102
Core 2                   44         31         80         86         92         94        100
Core 3                   48         37         78         83         90         94         96
Memory Ambient           30         30         30         30         30         30         30
Cpu package              46         35         81         86         94         97        102
Cpu IA cores             46         35         81         86         94         97        102
Cpu GT cores             41         29         55         59         67         70    26->74
Motherboard              30         24    23->28     23->36     28->31     23->30     24->33
Cpu                      35         23    20->71     20->76     25->84     20->87     22->92
Pch                      52         46    43->47     46->53     46->57     46->54     46->61
HD Assembly              26         20    19->23     19->27     25->26     19->25     19->27
HD Airflow               25         22    20->21     20->21     21->22     21->22     21->23
GPU                      29         25    24->26     24->33     26->29     23->26     24->28


Hot hot hot!

At minimum rpm, the scythe cannot keep up with the cooling of the Noctua as a cpu fan.

However, I couldn't hear any difference in noise with the Scythe as a cpu fan between max and min revs. I didn't trust my ears and I didn't even trust speedfan. I had to the case apart and had to see with my own eyes the Scythe fan speeding up and slowing down (I thought it wasn't connected properly somehow), but still no change in noise. Amazing! :shock:

The column with max cpu scythe fan is as quiet as all min speed fan with the Noctua but actually cools better!

Which now begs the question, can I put a faster Scythe in there? So at low rpm, it is still basically quiet as it is now but if I want to ramp it up, it can cool even better than a standard Noctua?

A while back, based on this review
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cooler ... html#sect0
I bought a Scythe AP-15 (max speed 1850). It looked it is the same as the slower range fans when it is slower, but you can ramp it up.
It went into another computer but I'm going to recycle it into the Lian Li have a look/listen!

One thing to investigate later on is blocking off underneath the NH-C14/motherboard area from the HD drive area. I think as the cpu fan is blowing air down, and some of the hot air get blown back to the HD drive area thus warming the HD up.

Another thing to investigate later is blocking off the top half of the NH-C14 from the top fan. The way the top fan is positioned, is that it pulls air equally from the top and the bottom of the NH-C14, so cool air above the NH-C14 can get pull straight out of the case before it has a chance to cool the cpu. The theory is if I block off the top half of the NH-C14 from the top fan, it will only pull hot air from the bottom of the NH-C14. It may work or it may not.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: My blog of building a quiet mini-itx computer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:45 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:14 pm
Posts: 64
Location: UK
Keeping a long story short, after takings load of temperature and noise readings, the Scythe 15 has definitely developed bearing noise and is unusable in this instance.

I've done some more research looking for quiet fans
That led me to here
http://www.hardware.fr/articles/874-35/ ... s-cfm.html
I came across the new Scythe glidestream, coollink SWIF2 1201
The Scythe Gentle Typhoon 13 and Scythe Slipstream M (1200), the same ones tested on silentpcreview, are also here.
At lower sound levels, the GT-13 is beaten by the Coollink.
A review here likes the Coollink
http://www.overclockerstech.com/coolink ... iew/all/1/

But I just happened to look at the pwm fans results for a comparison.
http://www.hardware.fr/articles/867-23/ ... latif.html
And found the scythe slipstream pwm beats them all down to 20db
At 20db, they measured a cfm flow of 17.55 which is better than anything else.
A quick check on silentpcreview on the scythe slipstream pwm confirms people like this fan so it goes onto the shopping list.

A review of the non-pwm Scythe Slipstreams are here
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article832-page3.html
and the Scythe Slipstream M (1200) beats the Nexus here
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article69 ... html#nexus

I've also found a 140mm version of the Scythe slipstream and I'm wondering if I should get that for the front fan or the cpu fan!

Lets see how we get on with the 120mm version. It should arrive soon.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 51 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


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