This FAQ is an attempt to reduce the level of repetitive traffic in the SPCR forums. Most of these questions can be answered by looking at the Recommended pages
, the relevant forum, or searching the forums
. Sometimes though, there are no clear answers and I hope that this FAQ will help clarify these types of questions as well.
Q: Can someone recommend me good (hard drive/heatsink/powersupply/case/fan/hard drive)?
A: Yes. The Recommended Section is the place to start.
Q: Is this a good (heatsink/powersupply/case/fan/hard drive) [On the recommended list]?
A: Well what do YOU think? (i.e. If we recommend it then we think it's a good product).
Q: Is this a good (heatsink/powersupply/case/fan/hard drive) [NOT on the recommended list]?
A: This is a much trickier answer. Sometimes, there's a product out that none of us have really had a chance to try out. Do a search
to find out. If there are results, then READ them and find out what the deal is. Chances are, it's one of four things:
1) It's NOT good for silent computing.
2) It's alright, but some people have had some issues and/or there are better choices.
3) It's great, but since the SPCR staff hasn't had a chance to formally review it, it hasn't made the recommended lists (or it's been reviewed more recently than the last recommended update).
4) No one knows.
Since there are usually a lot of tried and true choices out there, it's best not to get hung up on any one product that we haven't covered.
Keep in mind that although the SPCR community is global, the SPCR staff is primarily North American. So if there's a product that's not really available in North America (the Be Quiet! power supplies come immediately to mind), it probably won't be reviewed any time soon.
Q: Can SPCR review this (heatsink/powersupply/case/fan/hard drive)?
A: Yes. We don't generally buy samples but rely on donations from users and contributions from sponsoring retailers and companies. If you would like to see a product here on SPCR, don't write to MikeC. Write to the company and/or its distributors and ask if they would send a sample to SPCR for review. Or read what MikeC suggests
Q: Can someone recommend me a retailer that sells silent PC parts in Canada/UK/Australia?
A: Many SPCR members are from Canada
, and Australia
, and have posted threads on stores that sell silent PC parts in their respective countries. There are some products that are not easily available outside the United States (like Sorbothane). Unfortunately, there's little one can do about it. Your best bet is to make an offer, but be sure to do that in the proper forum
Q: What is AAM and How do I enable it?
A: AAM is short for Automatic Acoustic Management
. What this does is to trade some performance in exchange for reducing seek noise. While it may sound like a questionable sacrifice in the quest for silence, in practice, the performance loss is negligible while the seek noise reduction is remarkable. However, idle noise is unaffected, so this is not a drive silencing cure-all.
Hitachi's Feature Tool
(HFT) is the most popular way of enabling it. Most of the drive manufacturers offer software to enable AAM as well, so be sure too look around for that if the HFT does not work for you. NOTE: Not all drives support AAM, even today. The most notable examples are Seagate's 7200.7 & 8 series (the Barracuda IV and V series DO support AAM though).
Q: There's a question that ought to be in the FAQ. Why haven't you answered it?
A: As much as I hate to admit it, I don't know everything about silent PCs. I'll be happy to add your question to this FAQ if you can post both the question and answer to this thread