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 Post subject: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:42 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:05 pm
Posts: 2
Hi,

My question for the impatient in the room: Does it make sense to put four drives (2x HDD & 2x SSD) in cases like the Fractal Design R4 or the SilverStone TJ08B-E or will I be shooting myself in the foot because of the effective heat+noise?

Longer story:
I need this system to be powerful (think lots of photoshop/other graphic programs), silent or near-silent, and ideally in a small, attractive case since it's going to be sitting in the living room--my priorities in that order. I was planning on going with an ATX board, but the idea of having a micro-ATX case sounds really nice because of the potentially small footprint and low profile. What I'm worried about is that given everything that I want to cram in there, I will be frying eggs on top of the case (or worse, frying eggs with ear plugs in). I don't play games so I won't be putting in any crazy graphic cards, although I do plan on overclocking a little bit (3770K at about 4Ghz). So my question is: given everything that I want to put in the system (see below), do you think a case like R4 and/or TJ08B-E will still be able to keep everything at OK temperatures and stay quiet, or am I better off with (a) sucking it up and going with a full ATX board/case, (b) going for a closed-loop water cooling, or (c) something entirely different? Any suggestions welcome!

Also, money matters...

potential micro-ATX system:
ASUS Maximus V Gene (I want at least 4x SATA3 and I'm affraid of ASRock...)
i7 3770K @ ~4Ghz
Hyper 212+ -OR- Corsair H80i -OR- other suggestions?
2x WesternDigital Red 3TB
2x SSD
Cooler Master Silent Pro M2 650W PSU
Nvidia Quadro 4000
Fractal Design R4 -OR- SilverStone TJ08B-E -OR- other suggestions?

potential ATX system (same as above except...):
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H
Hyper 212+
Antec P183 V3 -OR- Antec SOLO II -OR- CM Silencio 550 -OR- CM Elite 371 -OR- Fractal Design Core 1000 -OR- Nexus Prominent 5 -OR- other suggestions?

thanks everyone!


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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:48 pm 
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
First off, storage consumes very little power and hence, gives off very little heat. All it takes is just a little bit of direct airflow in a hot case and they are fine.

The video card will probably be the noisiest thing in the case. The Quadro 4000 is 142W TDP and a single slot design. You sure you need this $700 card for your apps? Puget Systems has a benchmark for Photoshop CS6. If CS6 is your most intensive imaging app, then you really don't need more than a $100 gaming card to meet the Quadro's performance. There's $600 and 80W saved. :)

Next - the Define R4 is a mid-tower case, not a uATX case. You might be thinking of the Arc Mini.

TJ08E is 8.3"x15.6"x19.3" (W x H x D)
R4 is 9.1" x 18.3" x 20.6"
Mini is 8.3" x 15.9" x 19.1"

Your system with the Quaddro specs out at ~ 270W stressed, stock clocked. Overclocking the 3770 to 4GHz without overvolting adds another ~ 15W...call it 285W. You can build a decently quiet system in a uATX case that'll handle the heat without resorting to water cooling. Or, add a bit to the case size with ATX and have more freedom in component selection - especially for the CPU cooler as you plan to OC.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Posts: 1981
Location: Guatemala
I would go,

Case: Antec SOLO II, you can mount the two reds on the suspension and mount the ssd on top with a 5.25 converter.
PSU: KingWin Lazer Platinum LZP-550, here i would invest more since you already doing a very nice quiet build, imo worth it.
Mobo: MSI Z77A-G45 none of the Z77 have 4 intel sata III, and imo dont matter as mechanical drives wont even sataurate the sata II, but if you are going for FanXpert2, then search for an asus.
CPU: Intel Core i7 3770K great cpu if you use the hyperthreading, else you can save $100+ with Intel Core i5-3570K
CPU Cooler: Thermalright HR-02 Macho imo the best bang for the buck for performance and decently quiet fan.
GPU: Quadro... idk which are better in quiet.... or any aftermarket.

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


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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 5:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 2:10 pm
Posts: 1830
Location: Northern New Jersey
If you're using the CS6 platform, don't waste your money on the Quadro 4000. I thought about going this route, but went with a GTX660Ti instead and don't regret it. I actively use most of the CS6 suite and the GTX660Ti does wonderfully in Premiere with HD playback, and the quadro cards give little benefit in other CS6 apps, some acceleration in Photoshop, but the other apps don't see much benefit that I've noticed compared to my older GTX260.

If you go with a mATX system, what's stopping you from a Thermalright HR-02 Macho or other large coolers? Silverstone PS07 is a very great, fairly large, open, and well thought out case which would fit all your components easily. I don't think a Hyper 212 would really cut it with an overclocked 3770k, I could be wrong, but I have my doubts.

I wouldn't bother with a dedicated fan controller, just make sure you're using PWM fans. As long as it's built thoughtfully, you shouldn't need to worry about a thing.

In my current dual xeon machine, the hard drives are the only thing that make the noise, but I had them already, and don't have a reason to replace them yet. Beyond the hard drives, the system is near-silent during normal use. Should be a good reference for you.

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|Dual Intel Xeon E5-2620-Xigmatek SD1283 DK-II|Asus Z9PA-D8-HR-05 IFX|WD 250gb Velociraptor SATA3|16gb DDR3-1600 ECC RDIMM|WD Blue 640GB SATA2 x2|Logitech K750|Logitech Wireless Mouse|nVidia GTX660ti 2GB|Antec HCG-750|NZXT Source 210 Elite|M-Audio ProFire 2626|Art TubeOpto8 with Smooth Plate Tube Swap|Avid Artist Mix x2|
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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:05 pm
Posts: 2
First of all, thanks so much for the quick responses!

CA_Steve: OH man... I've looked at a number of reviews and specs of the R4, and somehow my brain has completely fooled me into thinking that ATX won't fit into it! Thank you for pointing out that (obvious) fact!

CA_Steve & bonestonne: I tend to keep my builds for a very long time so when I'm choosing components I try to pick ones that I think will last through a few generations of software/OS. I also tend to deal with giant files on a regular basis. Hence the desire for 4 SATA6s and a good graphics card (and my dilemma of whether to change to a mobo that includes Thunderbolt). Having said that, I'm starting to see your point that the Quadro 4000 is an overkill. The Puget Systems article was very insightful!

CA_Steve: so you think a 550W PSU is unnecessary? how long would you go?
Abula: I like this KingWin Lazer Platinum Series 550W you suggested. Never heard of the company before... I saw good reviews, though. Would anyone recommend AGAINST it?

I also see good reviews of the HR-02. Given the price though, do you still think it's a better option than a closed-loop water cooling?

For replacement fans, I was thinking about using either the Nexus 120mm Real Silent or the SilnX Effizio 120s.

thanks again for bouncing all your ideas!


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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 8:21 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
I think the trick is: first decide on the case and the video card, then you can select the best PSU for the job (in terms of size, features, and power). Let's say, you decide on a 65W-ish GPU like the GTX 650. Your stressed load power (with an overclocked, but not overvolted cpu) is in the neighborhood of 200W. If you go up to a GTX 650 Ti with 110W TDP, it's ~260W. Your actual load power will probably be in the 160W for the former and 210-220W range for the latter.

You can go a couple of ways:
- get a case well suited for a passive high efficiency PSU like the Seasonic 400FL2 for $120. [/url]
- Get a semi-passive PSU (fan doesn't spin up until ~20% load) like the Seasonic X-560 (~$125) or the Kingwin LZP-550 ($130). (there aren't lower power equivalents)
- Get a quiet always on fan like the Seasonic G360 for ~$60 (not modular) if you go with the lower TDP Gfx card or the G450 (modular) for ~$80 if you go with the GTX 650 Ti type card.

Fyi, most PSUs recommended here have fan profiles that are silent to quiet up to 50% load, then start to ramp up.

cooler: if you don't overvolt, a decent air cooler can be just as good as a water block system and almost always quieter...and you don't have to deal with radiator compatibility on the case.

case fans: are easy to replace. Try the ones you get with the case first and see if they work for you.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: advice for a small, powerful, quiet system
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 2:04 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Posts: 1981
Location: Guatemala
marekjaku wrote:
CA_Steve & bonestonne: I tend to keep my builds for a very long time so when I'm choosing components I try to pick ones that I think will last through a few generations of software/OS. I also tend to deal with giant files on a regular basis. Hence the desire for 4 SATA6s and a good graphics card (and my dilemma of whether to change to a mobo that includes Thunderbolt). Having said that, I'm starting to see your point that the Quadro 4000 is an overkill. The Puget Systems article was very insightful!
I dont think there are 1155 mobos with more than 2 sata III (intel based), still there is no way that mechanical drives at least the ones available on the market, can sataurate a sata II. But if this is a must for you and thinking that you might dump the quadro and that you might benefit from a more capable CPU, maybe look into Sandy Bridge E CPUs like Intel Core i7 3930K, a lot of the LGA2011 mobos come with a lot of sata connectors (some have 10), and a lot have more than 2 sata II (but in most cases are not intel but 3rd party). I still think its best for the money to go with ivy bridge, or if you can wait for haswell should arrive in 3 months, but the gains are not more than 10%.

marekjaku wrote:
CA_Steve: so you think a 550W PSU is unnecessary? how long would you go?
Abula: I like this KingWin Lazer Platinum Series 550W you suggested. Never heard of the company before... I saw good reviews, though. Would anyone recommend AGAINST it?
I would go with 500W mostly out of having the flexablity for the futre, also semi passive PSU tend to be quiet if you dont overload them, in a lot of cases, passive until 20% load... which makes them virtually silent, so a 550W shoudl give you around 110W of margin of bieng passive, and if dont overload them, most of them are very quiet until 50%, so thats 275W that your sistem should be under even under heavy load (depending on the gpu though).

Kingwin/sunflower make very good PSUs, not as common as Corsar, Seasonic, Antec, but their PSU are top notch, even very heavy PSU oriented sites have nothing but great reviews of them, here some for you to read more,

SPCR Kingwin Lazer Platinum 550W Power Supply
Quote:
The Kingwin Lazer Platinum LZP-550 power supply is unique in the marketplace today: It is not only the most energy efficient computer power supply, but also among the very quietest in any practical application.

[H]ardOCP Kingwin LZP-550 550W Power Supply Review
Quote:
The Kingwin LZP-550 had absolutely excellent voltage regulation, excellent DC Output Quality, had good Transient Load Test results, was extremely quiet, and had excellent build quality coupled with much improved support. So, what is this kind of amazing performance going to set you back? About $170 (there is a 10% promotional discount running through 3/10/11) exclusively at Newegg currently. Given the overall results though, this is one of those times where value be damned, this is [H]ardOCP and the Kingwin LZP-550 is a [H]ard Power Supply! It deserves a platinum award....if we had one

JonnyGuru Reviews - Kingwin Lazer Platinum 550W
Quote:
It's always exciting when something new and awesome crosses my path, and Kingwin's entry into the new 80 Plus Platinum category certainly qualifies under both terms. While the MSRP is currently much too high to compete in the marketplace, the Lazer Platinum 550 watt unit is by no means a poor value. Not too many units out there can match the performance I saw here today, let alone exceed it. There's lots of good here, and very little bad. Nice work, Kingwin.
Most of the complains goes toward being too expensive, since it was released at a $170 MSRP, but now you can find it at $130 (as my previous link), its a good pick.

marekjaku wrote:
I also see good reviews of the HR-02. Given the price though, do you still think it's a better option than a closed-loop water cooling?
Most of the time an air cooler with low rpm fan will be much quieter than water cooling setup, specially since value setups can have noisy pumps. The HR02 is a great air cooler, really among the top bang for the buck, check the following reviews,

SPCR Thermalright HR-02 Macho Quiet/Fanless Cooler
Quote:
Fortunately these cutbacks along with the decision to omit the second fan, help keep the cost of the Macho down. With a street price of about US$55, the HR-02 is not only an excellent buy, but a worthy heir to the HR-01/Plus.
Btw was tested with Fractal Design Define R3, worth the read specially since you are considering the R4 (i still favor the solo II out of the mounting of the hdd on suspension).

[H]ardOCP Thermalright HR-02 Macho CPU Air Cooler Review
Quote:
Now look at the HR-02 Macho. WOW! It is a world of difference between the two. The Thermalright HR-02 Macho is easily affordable and has a great value thanks to its solid performance. Make no mistake at all, the other heat sink manufacturers have been put on notice. Thermalright is competing on price here and it has come out of the corner swinging. At $40.00 USD, I have a hard time believing the Macho delivers all that it does, but it does. If you are looking for a new cooler for your box and don’t want to break the bank, the Thermalright HR-02 Macho is exactly what you’re looking for.


marekjaku wrote:
For replacement fans, I was thinking about using either the Nexus 120mm Real Silent or the SilnX Effizio 120s.
As CaSteve suggested, i would test the fans that came with the case and work from there, there are lots of options if you feel they dont perform as you like, two fans to consider in case you decide to swtich them, Noctua NF-F12 PWM for a higher budget, Scythe Slip Stream 120mm x 25mm PWM Mid Speed Fan - (SY1225SL12LM-P) for a more value oriented budget. Or the nexus basic and just undervolt them to your personal preference, but i prefer PWM fans being controlled by mobo depending on the conditions of the PC.

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


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