Ok i recieved a second one. The first was labeled hd204ui/z4 sep 10, the second is hd204ui/uz4 sep 10. Some people have said that the slash suffix relates to reduced warranty, others to 'grey imports' etc. But the samsung waranty checker says its code 100, good til 2013/12.
Anyway back to the subject. The vibration in this one is less, in my hand id say one or possibly even two points better than the first one. However when sitting on resonant surfaces theres little if any sound produced, so id says its a cleaner vibration somehow.
I have both the f2 and the better of the f4s running on my bench. Its clear the f4 is all round more noisy by a good way, theres more squeal, more oom and more whoosh.
On the upside the f4 is noticeably cooler, and the seeks are a good deal quieter than the f2.
Now the post i linked to above, where the guy with 6 f4s said there was no vibration etc, i think people with 6 of anything in a system have lots of fans, and arent as tuned to noise as your average silentpcreview forum member. The only other noise from my latest build is one 14cm fan running about 8 volts. With the hdd unplugged I can hear my laptop, the mains hum from (a supposedly decent) set of m-audio speakers), even the buzz from the lcd backlight invertor before i can hear the pc. Turn on the hdd and it all becomes a soup of sound.
The backlight invertor issue is quite common from what ive read, and you can get rid of it by turning the brightness to full, but then its really bright. As for the hdd, i guess ill try to find some way to get it to power off when not in use. That will be tricky because the ssd optimisations rely on the hdd at times, which keeps it powered up. Theres a script here
Or maybe keep the wretched thing in an enclosure under the desk. Roll on 2TB ssds?