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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2014 8:18 am 
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Looking at motherboards the choice seems to be 3 similar boards (Gigabyte boards don't get much press here on the SPCR forums):

Asus H97M-Plus
- New (and nice looking) fan control
- Only 2 case fan points on the motherboard (need more?)
- May still have fake 4-pin fan controllers
- Intel LAN
- Has a different Realtek audio chip to the other two (ALC887 8-Channel vs ALC892 7.1 channel). Given I plug in 2 speakers and that's all... it doesn't matter

MSI H97M-G43
- A full 9.6x9.6" board
-RealTek LAN (how good are they these days? Their LAN & sound on my ABIT AB9 caused endless problems)
- The only board with IGP DisplayPort

ASRock H97M Pro4
- IntelLAN
- on-board gfx up to 1920x1200 only (but max shared memory 1792MB, vs 512MB for the Asus???)


Originally the ASRock was my first choice for no reason other than the board looks nice; their abysmal website (I am not interested in their cloud offering FFS) and the lack of any on-board 2560x1600 graphics support should my graphics card fail and I need to fall back to it is making me reconsider. The ASUS marketing material is very nicely done, the BIOS looks impressive. Have I missed anything to distinguish between them?


Last edited by UK_Peter on Sun Jun 29, 2014 11:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2014 6:28 pm 
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I like more the Asus H97-Plus out of its layout, personally i like fanXpert2, although not a huge fan of all AI suite. But overall the boards seems very similar feature wise, i would base my choice more into how i plan to control fans. On pure PWM i would prefer MSI and its lower restrictions than asus on pure bios fan control (but you will need a pwm fan splitter and similar fans as all will be ran on the same PWM signal). If the fans will be 3pin for case fans i would prefer Asus, MSI has similar restrictions on bios on SYS_FAN heraders (CHA_FAN on asus), but asus has fanXpert2 to overide the bios limitations. AsRock i dont own so i cant say, but from what i read seems pretty good boards now a days.

I prefer intel lan, but i have no issues to report with Realtek on MSi H81i, transfer as fast as my intel lans, and saturates fine my gigabit network so while i would prefer intel, having realtek wouldn't be a drawback.

On the on board codec audio cards... they are very similar, all do basic but if you want quality you have to go into dedicated sound card or a dac.

On the igpu, read Intel HD 4600 cannot display 2560x1440?

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 10:41 pm 
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Hypothetical question: could this build be powered off a PicoPSU?

They have a 160W PicoPSU version available (with a 200W peak, whatever that means).


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:00 am 
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UK_Peter wrote:
Hypothetical question: could this build be powered off a PicoPSU?

They have a 160W PicoPSU version available (with a 200W peak, whatever that means).
Will depend on the other components, but it should run up to a 4770.

Im about to swap a G3220 for i7 4770K next week and ill be powering it with picoPSU 150XT + 150W brick, ill post the build probably on sunday in case you want to see how it goes.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:11 am 
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Hi Abula,
Abula wrote:
UK_Peter wrote:
Will depend on the other components, but it should run up to a 4770.

In this case an i5 4590, GTX 750Ti, ITX/mATX motherboard, SSD and a 3.5" HD. Not too much.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2014 2:48 pm 
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That will be cutting it close.

The 160 Watts rating is fine and dandy, but the PicoPSU 160XT delivers only 8A max current on the 12V rail according to the manual. That's 96 Watts. It does 15A peak load for 60 seconds or so. Seeing that gap, I think sustained max load of 10A may be possible if you aim a fan at the PSU.

That would be 120 Watts from the 12V rail - if you're lucky!

The i5 has a TDP of 84 Watts. It will probably never reach that. But I'd calculate with at least 60 Watts from the CPU under gaming conditions. All from the 12V rail.

Then there's the GPU. A 750 Ti has a power target of 60w and it will consistently draw that much, according to the reviews I've read.

Your setup will comfortably exceed the PicoPSU's rated 12V load and will likely exceed best case scenarios as well.
If a fan is used, this may still work. You could try and report back 8)

If it was my decision, I wouldn't try this with a CPU with a TDP over 45w though.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:55 pm 
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tim851 wrote:
The 160 Watts rating is fine and dandy, but the PicoPSU 160XT delivers only 8A max current on the 12V rail according to the manual. That's 96 Watts. It does 15A peak load for 60 seconds or so. Seeing that gap, I think sustained max load of 10A may be possible if you aim a fan at the PSU.
I thought that the picoPSU was just a passthrough for the 12V rail, that what rule the capacity on them was the brick itself, as there is also no efficiency on the manual for the 12V rails, just for the 5V and 3.3V, but im not sure, i have never powered a i7 with picoPSU. But i find it a little missleading in terms of why sell a 192W 12V brick if its going to be capped to 8A while in theory a 102W brick could deliver that as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:08 am 
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tim851 is correct - I raised this with Mini-Box and they said:
Quote:
The 12V rail from the picoPSU cannot hold both the CPU and the mentioned video card. Keep in mind that the 12V rail has to power other components too. Your described setup will work well without the video card.

Which is understandable, though a shame given the state of SFX power supplies.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:08 pm 
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UK_Peter wrote:
Hi Abula,
Abula wrote:
UK_Peter wrote:
Will depend on the other components, but it should run up to a 4770.

In this case an i5 4590, GTX 750Ti, ITX/mATX motherboard, SSD and a 3.5" HD. Not too much.
I just finished testing outside the case the setup for the camera server with picoPSU 150XT + 150W brick, and it hold pretty well with the i7 4770K, but on prime95 i reached 149W, so even if the 4590 will consume less and prime95 is an unlikely scenario, after my testing i think its way to close to add a dedicated gpu, it might run fine though, just its risky, i personally wouldnt do it, i would probably persue a small PSU like Seasonic G360 (if it would fit on the case you are planning).

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 4:09 am 
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It's possible to bypass the picoPSU and feed stuff 12v directly from the brick, like 4pin CPU power, 6pin PCIe power etc. I've powered systems with dedicated graphics cards in this way with a Dell DA-2 (12V 18A) and any picoPSU (90-XLP being my favorite). I also usually try to bypass the weak barrel connector. But this is experimental stuff, I wouldn't sell such a system to someone, or use that kind of setup in any production environment.
So Seasonic G360 would be my recommendation also. :)

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Server: Intel DH77DF | i3-2100T | 4TB+3x3TB | picoPSU | Idle 24W AC


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 12:20 am 
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Well I've been all round the houses with this build! Having seen gaidal's experience and spoken to a scientist friend, who even analysing satellite imagery rarely needs more than 16GB RAM, I've decided a mITX build will be fine for now.

I'm going to try the IGP and add a graphics card later if I need it. I'm hoping if the 4600 isn't enough then upgrading to Iris Pro on Broadwell (when available) will be - and then I can move to a Lone Industries case :) For now I'm getting a larger case for ease of build and playing it safe re the gfx card.

Motherboard: Asus Z97I-PLUS Mini ITX LGA1150 Motherboard (£105.15 @ Ebuyer)
I've gone for the Z97 only because of having WiFi on-board; it might be useful even though most of the time as I'm on a wired network.

Memory: Crucial BLS2C8G3D1609ES2LX0CEU 16GB 1600MHz CL9 DDR3 Ballistix Sport Memory Kit (£104.77)
Can't find a bad word about it. It doesn't show on the ASUS Memory QVL, but Kingston 1.35V RAM does, so hoping it works

Case: Cooltek U2 (£70.00)
Except for slight ventilation problems (esp with a 3.5" drive inside) it looks very nice. It has raised questions about the PSU however...

Power Supply: be quiet! 400W 80+ Gold Certified ATX Power Supply (£51.99 @ Amazon UK)
£18 cheaper than the Seasonic G360 in the UK. I won't sit in the most efficient area of its power output (~89% vs 92%) but it's quiet.
The case supports an ATX supply but looking at photos (here vs here) I wonder if a SFX PSU would be wise? The Silverstone ST-30SF is only £38, but you lose the larger fan to help cool the case. What do you think?

Storage: The cheapest 480-520GB SSD I can find (currently £149.99 @ Ebuyer)
I missed a great deal last week of a Toshiba Q 512GB SSD for £130, still kicking myself :)

Storage 2: A 3.5" hard drive from my current computer - until I get a NAS sorted.

CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor (£139.98 @ Ebuyer)

CPU Cooler: Scythe BIG Shuriken 2 Rev. B 45.5 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler (£38.97 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
I picked this instead of a tower cooler only in case I rebuild in a smaller case. I think it won't block the expansion slot. Is there a different cooler I'd be better off with?

Total: £679.85

For cooling the case I have a few airflow arrangements I want to test - all with dust filters fitted on all vents to try and stop the case filling up. The most obvious option is negative pressure, venting out the back and with a front fan to help airflow. I'm curious about reversing the airflow, sucking in from the back and letting it find its own way out the front, though the PSU messes this up. Ducting looks like it could help a lot - esp if blowing out the back, as the front fan mount to case edge intakes could be ducted for better suction, and then the air split for CPU and PSU.


Last edited by UK_Peter on Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:04 am 
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UK_Peter wrote:
What do you think?

I don't have any definitive, objective reason (even if I have some doubts about starved airflow and heat build up), but as I can't stand overcrowd environments, personally I would go for a Silverstone 300W SFX unit.
Another thing I think is that I wouldn't use the red color, as it's usually used by moderators for their official interventions.


UK_Peter wrote:
Is there a different cooler I'd be better off with?

AFAIK among the low profile coolers, only the much costlier Noctua NH-L12 is marginally more effective, but only with two fans running (so when it cannot be anymore called a low profile cooler).

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 7:17 am 
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Any particular reason why you going with the Z97 instead of the H97? feature wise they are very similar, if you are not overclocking i would go with the Asus H97I-PLUS Motherboard.

While i like Lian Li cases, and this seems very similar in appearance, i don't like the design for a GPU oriented case, seems little airflow specially with 3.5hdd. If i were to build on U2, i would use the front fan and the back fan. Haswell runs hot specially hyper threaded CPUs, given that yours isnt, still has high clocks and TDP, so dont go with a low end cpu cooler, consider at least a Scythe Kotestu, the Asus motherboard allows for a tower heatsink to be installed due to cpu socket placement, the kotetsu is kinda slim so shouldn't have much issues, its cheap as well, and should be good enough to handle the quad you like quietly. The U2 has 175mm height clearance, so the Kotetsu should fit.

Try to get a couple case fans that can undervolt well, Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP12 or AP13 are will drop to 300rpms under fanXpert, or get Scythe Slipstream/Glidestream 800/1200rpm versions or Nexus Basic 120, all of them undervolt well and are decent for a quiet build.

I would avoid if you can a 3.5 hdd, your idea of a NAS is what i would do, get as big as you can on SSD and have your main storage elsewhere, now if you have to have some in your pc, consider a 2.5hdd, they are design for laptops where usually there is not much ventilation and they still hold very good, a scenario that you will face. Hitachi Travelstar 5K1500 1500GB is my new favorite, but there are lots to chose from. A 2.5hdd placed on the bottom should still allow you to use a dedicated gpu, specially something like MSI/Asus GTX760 mini that come with slot blower on the back of them.

About the SSD, i wouldn't go with the cheapest you can find, try to go with a proven brand that has good support and track of their past ssds, like Samsung, Crucial or Intel. Samsung 840 EVO 500GB and Crucial MX100 512GB seems very good value oriented options, both offer your desired 512gb so that would be my pick. There is still another option, with the motherboard you are choosing, Asus Z97i having a bottom motherboard mounted SSD (m.2), there are very few options atm, but there are some, like Crucial CT512M550SSD4 512GB M550 M.2 Type 2280 Internal SSD or Samsung XP941 512GB M.2 NGFF PCIe Solid state drive SSD.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:58 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
I don't have any definitive, objective reason (even if I have some doubts about starved airflow and heat build up), but as I can't stand overcrowd environments, personally I would go for a Silverstone 300W SFX unit.

Thanks - to address your doubts about airflow and heat build up, that'd be a different case? I do not want to create unnecessary difficulties for myself with this build.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:14 am 
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Building on smaller factors will always be harder, less airflow (in most cases), components have little room, limited spaces where to hide cables (cable management is none existent), restricted size of hardware, etc. That said, there are a lot of people building on mini and micro atx, for me its fun to able to cram up high end hardware in a little box, but for sure its tougher to deal with it, just gotta accept it comes with building on smaller factors.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:16 am 
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Abula wrote:
Any particular reason why you going with the Z97 instead of the H97? feature wise they are very similar, if you are not overclocking i would go with the Asus H97I-PLUS Motherboard.

WiFi is the only reason. If I decide I don't want that, I'll get the H97. Apart from saving £10, is there any benefit to get the H board? I cannot find power consumption figures for Asus H97I-PLUS vs Asus Z97I-PLUS.

Quote:
While i like Lian Li cases, and this seems very similar in appearance, i don't like the design for a GPU oriented case, seems little airflow specially with 3.5hdd. If i were to build on U2, i would use the front fan and the back fan. Haswell runs hot specially hyper threaded CPUs

This is not an attack on you Abula but I am frustrated as I keep hearing this, and given the thread started with me choosing Ivy Bridge which run less hot and being advised to get a Haswell, I feel in a catch-22. Either I get a modern architecture which runs hot, or an out of date architecture that's cooler. I could also get a lower-power Haswell (losing performance) or even a i5-S - which aren't favoured in this forum.

I'm sure a mesh case like the Ncase M1 would be better, but there aren't many cases around this size with mesh.

Thanks for the fan recommendations, that's excellent and I'll add a couple to my shopping list.

Quote:
I would avoid if you can a 3.5 hdd, your idea of a NAS is what i would do, get as big as you can on SSD and have your main storage elsewhere, now if you have to have some in your pc, consider a 2.5hdd, they are design for laptops where usually there is not much ventilation and they still hold very good, a scenario that you will face.

Yes, there's not much space for a 3.5" is there! The NAS is 3-4 months away, my budget is in this computer for now.

Quote:
A 2.5hdd placed on the bottom should still allow you to use a dedicated gpu, specially something like MSI/Asus GTX760 mini that come with slot blower on the back of them.

I've been planning a GTX 750 Ti if needed with its low TDP, and the GTX760 is more than I want to spend on a graphics card. A slot blower would be a good feature.


Last edited by UK_Peter on Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:07 am 
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Abula wrote:
There is still another option, with the motherboard you are choosing, Asus Z97i having a bottom motherboard mounted SSD (m.2), there are very few options atm, but there are some, like Crucial CT512M550SSD4 512GB M550 M.2 Type 2280 Internal SSD or Samsung XP941 512GB M.2 NGFF PCIe Solid state drive SSD.

Would a "naked" SSD be a good idea, in such a cramped space and with a possibly starved airflow? I guess it should likely run rather hot (at least the Crucial one).

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:19 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
Abula wrote:
There is still another option, with the motherboard you are choosing, Asus Z97i having a bottom motherboard mounted SSD (m.2), there are very few options atm, but there are some, like Crucial CT512M550SSD4 512GB M550 M.2 Type 2280 Internal SSD or Samsung XP941 512GB M.2 NGFF PCIe Solid state drive SSD.

Would a "naked" SSD be a good idea, in such a cramped space and with a possibly starved airflow? I guess it should likely run rather hot (at least the Crucial one).
Personally idk why they are moving so fast toward m.2, given that it will be faster in sequential, there are very few options for m.2 ssds atm, i would liked more the manufactures remain with mSata for this gen at least, there are wonderful msata like Samsung 840Evo that its price is just slightly higher than the 2.5 version, and lots of there options from a lot of manufacturers. Either way you are right about the crucial, although not sure how it would turn out below the motherboard, how will it interact with other components, but they are meant for laptops where airflow is minimum so i would say maybe would be fine... but who knows, i would go with samsung but at that price..... its too much, would like to see msata instead of m.2.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:40 pm 
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Abula wrote:
but they are meant for laptops where airflow is minimum so i would say maybe would be fine

Probably, but usually not for fanless laptops, so I have some doubts about.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 5:23 am 
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Well the parts have all arrived (sans case) and I've assembled the system on my desk to see what I think of the HD4600.

First impressions are how quiet it is; the ST30SF is making odd cracling noises but I hope these will cease as it beds in. The Scythe fan has a tick and runs slightly off-true (looking at a fixed point you can see the blades going up/down on each revolution) so I will try and RMA it.

I didn't like Scythe's thermal compound (too thin and liquid) and think I may not have applied enough to cover the CPU - I will need to take off the cooler and have a look.

Installing ASUS's collection of drivers on Windows 7 was a pain. I'd expected that to improve in the last 7 years, but no - individual downloads/installs.

First thing I tested was Prime95. I'd heard so much about Fan Xpert 3 and how easy it makes to have a quiet system that I wanted to test it out. Only it seems to record the completly wrong temperature for the CPU - I could get the cores according to HWiNFO over 70 degrees and the fans had hardly ramped up.
Attachment:
HWInfo-Fanxpert3.jpg


Having now done some reading this seems a v common issue with Fan Xpert. Given how much it's recommended, have I set something up incorrectly? I have yet to apply the latest BIOS update, but the release notes say nothing about CPU temperature sensing.


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


Last edited by UK_Peter on Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 6:56 am 
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UK_Peter wrote:
the ST30SF is making odd cracling noises but I hope these will cease as it beds in.


I'm not sure about what you're saying, but that PSU should be dead silent, so, if it makes some odd noises, maybe you should return it.

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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 7:24 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
I'm not sure about what you're saying, but that PSU should be dead silent, so, if it makes some odd noises, maybe you should return it.

Yes I agree. The noise has settled down to be a steady 50Hz or 60Hz 'clicking' away. I need to wait until I turn off my other computers to see how noisy it is, but I can hear it from 1m away at present.

Who makes slim fans apart from Scythe and which would you recommend? Apart from the clicking noise the Slip Stream 120 mm Slim is nice, but if they say that's how it is I want to find something quieter. The clicking's present from 200-1800rpm, so it's not a vibration resonance.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 8:17 am 
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Joined: Mon May 26, 2014 6:16 am
Posts: 61
Location: Great Britain
I have successfully completed a 40 minute run of Prime95 in Blend mode and the fan profile has kept the cores to 71 degrees and below, which is an improvement over earlier on.

The motherboard has an excrutiating high-pitched squeal/whine under load - I don't know how to describe it, except like fingernails down a blackboard. The temperatures will rise, the fan will speed up, they'll fall and the squeal will start. I couldn't track down which component was causing it, but I think it was the capacitors just north of the CPU socket.


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 Post subject: Re: Power/Quiet PC Build Advice
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:21 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Posts: 1906
Location: Guatemala
UK_Peter wrote:
Who makes slim fans apart from Scythe and which would you recommend? Apart from the clicking noise the Slip Stream 120 mm Slim is nice, but if they say that's how it is I want to find something quieter. The clicking's present from 200-1800rpm, so it's not a vibration resonance.
I had sometimes fans of the same model, some click others dont, maybe its production, maybe its luck, but there arent that many slim fans on the market. Scythe does make 3 different models of their slim 120s,

Scythe Slip Stream 120mm x 12mm Fan - 1200 RPM (SY1212SL12L)
Scythe Slip Stream 120mm x 12mm Fan - 1600 RPM (SY1212SL12M)
Scythe Slip Stream 120mm x 12mm Fan - 2000 RPM (SY1212SL12H)

Thinking on slim, is the 120mm the only measument you can use? im currently using a Noctua 92 x 14 mm Low-Profile Cooling Fan with A-Series Blades (NF-A9x14), and works pretty good at low rpms.

Image

_________________
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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