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 Post subject: BQE vs. Sonata on airflow - Should I?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2004 12:57 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2004 4:58 am
Posts: 374
Location: Near St. Louis, Missouri
I'm putting the finishing touches on my system and wondering if the step from a Sonata to a BQE would be worth it. I've made most of the mods to the Sonata to improve airflow (bezel mods, feet, etc...) Only thing I can't do is cut away the HDD cage and I really don't want to do that anyways. My current setup is this...

AMD Mobile 2400 35 watt @ 200x10 @ 1.4 volts
Thermaltake 420w Purepower (Coolmax Taurus 400w w/ 120mm on the way)
Zalman 7000 AlCu with decoupled stock fan @ 5 volts via fanmate
2x256 PC3200 - upgrading to a gig of CH-5 chips next paycheck
Shuttle AN35-N Ultra w/ passive nb (stock)
Passive GeforceFX 5200 (will be moving to a 9800 pro with the new ATI Silencer when they come out...)
Western Digital 80GB SE (Spinpoint is on the way)
Stock Sonata fan runs at 5v via fanmate


My system runs at bout 36 CPU/30 Case in idle or just browsing, and about 42/34 under heavy load.

I mainly want to know if the BQE will help my airflow at all because I'd love to push this mobile a little harder if I can do it without sacrificing too much noise.

I know there are countless posts out there, but I want real world opinions of people who have done this and regretted it or blah blah blah, not "well the sonata doesn't have this so the bqe is better" If you've tried this and it's worked for you, let me know. If you think the idea is stupid, let me know. Just give me your opinions/experience... I know the insides and details of both cases just fine, so I already know what the plus and minuses are of each.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2004 1:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2003 10:06 am
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA
To be honest, I'm curious to know what you plan to achieve with BQE that you haven't already done with the Sonata? Your temps are amazing (your CPU temp is lower than my case temp).

If the only thing that you can't do is cut the HDD cage, then I'm not sure how the BQE is going to help you. It has the same style cage, and given enough Sonata mods, the only functional difference between the BQE and the Sonata will be the extra drive bay.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2004 1:53 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2004 4:58 am
Posts: 374
Location: Near St. Louis, Missouri
That's exactly what I was wondering. I've heard countless people say how much better the BQE is on airflow than the Sonata, so I'm just contemplating whether the shift to the BQE would be worth it if I could shave off a few degrees in order to run this mobile at say 2200-2400mhz.

Of course with the BQE I'd punch the grills and might add a front fan as well. I've overlooked it so far on the Sonata because the placement on the cage doesn't really do much for air intake. Maybe I should look into different fans instead of a new case, I don't know. I'm just looking to squeeze a few more degrees of cooling out of this rig so I can up the mobile a few mhz. The previous owner ran this thing at 2600mhz at 1.9 volts on water, so I'd like to at least hit the 3200+ mark. After about a year of doing this and that to silence my rig I'm finally getting happy with it. The Coolmax can't be near as loud as the Thermaltake, however I'm thinking it's going to exhaust less air than the TT does. Also I'd like to get case temps down just a tad to stay in the efficiency sweet spot for the PSU.


Also there are two things that are starting to bother me about my Sonata lol.

1) My biggest reason for not going BQE in the first place was the front mic/audio plugs. Since then I've gone to a USB headset (tired of screwing with the front audio plugs on different motherboards) and I don't really need it anymore. The LED's have been unplugged since I'm not electronics savvy and have no way to make them dim enough to reach a pleasant level (I'd love to have them on if they weren't so damn bright)

2) The side panel behind the mobo isn't removable and I don't want to have to drill out the holes just to hide my wires better.

I've looked at the BQE and the one thing I did notice (correct me if I'm wrong) is that the area on the actual case metal behind the filter is more open. I don't have the tools to cut that part away on my Sonata, and it looks to me at least like this would improve airflow quite a bit. And of course again the front fan is actually an intake and not a HD exhaust.

I'm open to criticism so please correct me or let me know what you think options might be for the Sonata or your general ideas.

As always thanks ahead of time, you guys have made the past year or two of modding and building a lot more pleasant and successful, even to someone like me who lacks ingenuity with a toolset.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2004 2:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2004 6:07 am
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Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands, Europe
If the only goal is to improve the airflow in the bottom front of the case. And you don't want to do any metalworking. Then I would do the following:
  • Mount a 120mm fan on the drivecage.
  • Block all other holes in the drivecage with cardboard and/or foam.
By blocking those holes, you prevent the fan from just circulating air inside the case.

That's a lot cheaper than buying a new case.

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