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 Post subject: Quieting down a P182 (server box)
PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:16 pm 
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Location: Denmark
Looking for some recommendations:

The system:

Server box, running Microsoft Hyper-V with a bunch of VMs 24/7
Antec P182 case
Asus M3N-HT Deluxe motherboard
45w TDP Athlon x2 4850e
Ninja 2 (fanless) on the CPU
6 hard drives running RAID10 (single platter 250GB 7200RPM Seagates - can't hear them :-))
Corsair HX520W PSU
Stock P182 fans top & rear, both on 'low' setting

The box is not under heavy load 95% of the time - mostly it gets hammered when I am deploying servers on it - which isn't that often.

I would like the system to be a lot quieter than it currently is. It would appear that most of the noise in the system comes from the P182 120mm fans, so I am looking to replace those.

The fans I am considering, which are readily available where I live:

1. Scythe S-Flex 800RPM or 1200RPM
2. Noctua NF-S12 500-800RPM (almost twice the price of the S-Flex)
3. Noctua NF-S12B 600-1200RPM (same price as 500-800RPM model)

I have heard some mention of certain fans vibrating badly when mounted at the top position in the P182 - and I am certainly not impressed with the noise signature of the included fans.

I have also been considering swapping the PSU for a Silverstone ST40NF or ST30NF - but would such a unit be sufficient for the above configuration, or would it just melt quietly at the bottom of the P182 :-) ?

Your comments appreciated.

Regards,
Lars


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:43 pm 
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Scythe S-FLEX 1200rpm or Nexus / YL 1000rpm would be good choices imho.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 1:30 am 
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Given that scenario I would deploy 2 of the Akasa Apache AK-FN057 120mm PWM fans together with the Akasa Akasa AK-CB002 PWM splitter cable. You are not using the motherboard CPU PWM fan header so the splitter cable could be plugged into that, and it draws its current from a molex connector so you will not be pulling any power through the motherboard. The fans will run at around 600 rpm or less in normal conditions; on the occasions when the system is under heavier load they will ramp up automatically.


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 Post subject: Re: Quieting down a P182 (server box)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 7:14 am 
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Gramkow wrote:
I have also been considering swapping the PSU for a Silverstone ST40NF or ST30NF - but would such a unit be sufficient for the above configuration, or would it just melt quietly at the bottom of the P182 :-) ?

Maybe not "melt quietly" but still not recommended. Those PSUs still need some peripheral airflow, and without a fan, there isn't any down there. IS the Corsair 520 that noisy? My instinct is to point to those 6 drives. I bet they are a major source of noise, and you have't really put your fingere on it. I just can't see any collection of 6 drives being inaudible -- unless they are SSDs.

Case in point -- I have a single-platter 500GB Samsung F2 (this is by far the quietest 3.5" drive ever, measures 1 dBA above ambient in the 11 dBA anechoic chamber) inside a Smart Drive (HDD noise dampening enclosure) on a piece of soft foam at the bottom of the closed lab Audio PC right now. There is one fan running at ~800rpm or less, almost inaudible except from ~1.5'. This drive is plainly audible when I work at the KVM next to it. Not that it's noisy, but it's audible. Hence my doubt about your statement...
Quote:
6 hard drives running RAID10 (single platter 250GB 7200RPM Seagates - can't hear them Smile)

These are not as quiet as the Samsung HDDs, and 6 of them are something like 7 dB noisier than 1. I'd check the noise sources again.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 8:59 am 
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I have the same HDD Segate 7200.10 single plater 250GB and is quiet compared with other drive I had in the past I'm impressed with the seek noise is impossible to hear the HDD working but 7200 rpm is something and it will generate noise by vibration especially that I do not have any dampening. I used this drive for about one year now and is almost dead I found around 20 bad block and I used sea-tools to remap those but it will not live long. It will be my last mechanical drive they are not good quality. I will only use SSD and embedded OS (I do not trust a normal OS on a flash disk) but it will be no problem if you only read from disk you can probably use the disk more than 20 years.
I do not know how hungry is your system but I guess is less than 200W at full load probably less and under 100W at idle (you do not have any video card or high TDP CPU) and with 95% of the time used at idle it must be possible to use even a good fanless PSU.
I measured power consumption on my HDD Segate 7200.10 250GB and is for 5V 0.4A to 1.2A and 12V 0.18A to 0.35A this is a total of 4W min to max 10.2W so the 6 HDD will be about 60W + 45W CPU (maybe less if you undervolt) and I have no idea about MB but I will guess again :) not more than 40W including RAM + another 10W for Fans this is max 155W.
You may be able to use two of my fanless power-supply one for HDD's and one for MB and CPU. I just need to test and see how two power supply will work together.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 11:00 am 
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electrodacus -- on bootup, each HDD can pull up to 25~30W when spinning up, briefly, maybe 1s, but it's there, it's real.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 12:28 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
electrodacus -- on bootup, each HDD can pull up to 25~30W when spinning up, briefly, maybe 1s, but it's there, it's real.


Yes is probably true I guess it need more power at start-up but most of that start-up power will be on 12V line where is more than enough power available. I do not have an oscilloscope to test maybe I will build a simple one using the sound card. Is hard to find power consumption data on internet especially for MB and HDD.

PS: I just restarted my computer to test the power consumption at startup an you are right I get 1.32A on the 12V line at start-up for the Segate 250GB (ST3250410AS) drive and this is for about one second but I have no load on the 5V line in this second when 12V line is loaded. so total power at startup for this disk is 12V * 1.32A about 16W and the 130W power supply I have will have no problem with 6 off this HDD if is only used for HDD not also the rest of the system.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 1:32 pm 
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electrodacus wrote:
Is hard to find power consumption data on internet especially for MB and HDD.

Not that hard. Most HDD makers have more than one kind of spec sheet for their products. On the detailed versions, they usual provide spinup power info. On this PDF, for example, -- http://www.hitachigst.com/tech/techlib. ... 000_DS.pdf -- the Hitachi E7K1000 series 3.5" 7200rpm drives (250gb~1tb) are rated: Startup current (A, max.) -- 0.5 (+5V), 2.0 (+12V) -- or 26.5W max.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 2:25 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
electrodacus wrote:
Is hard to find power consumption data on internet especially for MB and HDD.

Not that hard. Most HDD makers have more than one kind of spec sheet for their products. On the detailed versions, they usual provide spinup power info. On this PDF, for example, -- http://www.hitachigst.com/tech/techlib. ... 000_DS.pdf -- the Hitachi E7K1000 series 3.5" 7200rpm drives (250gb~1tb) are rated: Startup current (A, max.) -- 0.5 (+5V), 2.0 (+12V) -- or 26.5W max.


Thanks I was cheking the spec of my drive http://www.seagate.com/docs/pdf/en-GB/datasheet/disc/ds_barracuda_7200_10.pdf and is similar to Hitachi 2A max on 12V line no mention about 5V. and more that I measured.
They only provide max current for 5V and 12V line at spinup I will prefer a graph.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 2:45 pm 
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It's possible that the max current is for the models with more platters... or maybe the peak passes so quickly that it is not properly registered by your power/current measuring device. Some Intel and AMD power engineers I've spoken with prefer to use instruments with logging systems that can capture signals quicker than the eye can see. (This is for CPU power peaks but it might also hold true for HDDs). Anyway, if the peak is so short, your PSU should be able to handle it even if it exceeds the steady-state capacity.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 2:54 am 
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Location: Denmark
Thanks for the feedback.

I'll look into the drive noise for sure. The reason I've pointed to the fans as the main source of noise in the system is that (highly unscientific, I know) I tried disconnecting them and booted up the system without them - and the level of noise improved a lot - it's not an inaudible system by any standards, but when I couldn't hear the fans the system was - to my ears at least - quiet enough for my tastes.

Will put in a couple of S-Flex 1200rpm units later this week and report on my experience with them.

Thanks again,
Lars


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