Think of it: all the heat from your pc staying in your pc or, in the case of passive cooling, being blown away, and circulating throughout your house!
i think you meant to say active in this sentence, but ok - passive cooling doesn't necessarily have to be a closed system. this is just a drawback of standard computer cases, that it would tend to seal the air in a hot box like that. but with the correct design and/or geometry, natural convection could also be exploited to circulate airflow (granted it's a very weak effect). and where natural convection is sufficient
, it is the correct choice - you wouldn't want active cooling on, say, LCD power brick (currently warming my toes) just because it works much, much better.
Or the other way of achieving it is if you build a computer with lower overall thermals and not top-of-the-line processing power. That way you don't have as much concentrated heat in the first place.
Precisely! One must tackle the issue of heat at the source, rather than trying to compensate for it via cooling. That was, effectively, what I was attempting to say when I said that modern semiconductors are designed for active cooling!
gynah..well actually i meant the same thing when i said
it should just require sufficient attention to efficiency...which has been missing in the past
we're beginning to see the start of this with P-M boards for desktops like this. actually i'm quite amazed at the thermal characteristics of dothan and winchester/venice cores compared to recent predecessors! if the trend extends to other chips and components we could realistically get passive cooled computers which consume drastically less power but are at least as "powerful" as today's. if they can be efficient enough to make passive cooling feasible, then passive is more desirable imo (less moving parts and less noise, more 'elegant'). MikeC
's beef with passive cooling is that it's not really a good trade-off with current computer hardware. OK, fair. but it can still be a goal for future hardware, right? and if nobody is aiming to get passive cooled computers with today hardware then nobody working in industry is going to see a market for pushing efficiency to the limits (to try and design something to sell it to those guys and make their task easier. demand comes first, then supply)
Secondly: I do not believe the future of silent computing to lie in passive cooling, rather in more efficient and less noisy active solutions.
well maybe i'm more optimistic than you. i can see tiny passive cooled computers when i'm my parents age - ok not the near future, but maybe the distant future, i think (hope)!
maybe wishful thinking but then again, i mean the main limitations should be semiconductor design issues and i don't think we're close to hitting up against any theoretical boundaries yet, because superfluous heat output hasn't been seriously attacked until recently..