Rory have you heard it or are you guessing because the reviews say its a quiet PC and in all the consumer reviews I read no one even mentioned the noise level. I am just hoping that my freind got a bad install because I cant imagine them marketing a comp that loud.
Let me try to rephrase this so I won't sound too much like a jack@ss.
"Quiet" is a relative term. Many computers that are classified by their manufacturers as "gaming" PCs are a lot louder than the Dell XPS probably is, so Dell calls it "Quiet." At any rate, the best way for your friend to know he's getting a quiet PC is for him to contact Dell and see if he can exchange the XPS for a similarly-equipped Dimension, which has fewer fans. Sure, there will be a performance hit, but it is a tradeoff between smoking performance and quiet.
As for ways to make the XPS quieter, your options are fairly limited. The power supply may not be replaced with a quiet model because the XPS uses a low-profile proprietary design. The thermally-controlled fans would be a difficult modification to make because the Dell fans use a proprietary 4-pin connector to the motherboard. Some snipping and splicing of wires would be required, or the machine will not start up, because since the rear fans are responsible for CPU cooling, if the motherboard can't tell any fans are there, it will display an error message. Even if you were motivated to try and change out the fans for Panflos or Papsts, it might not be very worth your while. The Dells use Nippon Micro Bearing (NMB)-branded fans made by a company called Minebea. They are already very, very quiet fans when used with thermal control like Dell does, and switching them for Panaflo or Papst will probably not result in any significant improvement. Also, snipping the wires to splice a 3-pin fan into the Dell 4-pin connector will almost surely void your friend's warranty. Same goes for any modifications made to the power supply, which features 60mm fans. 60mm fans are too small to spin slow and be effective, so they will always be moderately loud.
That is why I say the best option for your friend as far as changing the actual hardware goes is to try and get Dell to replace the XPS with a Dimension. The alternatives do not look very attractive. Some things your friend might be able to do are:
-Set the computer on the ground. If the floor is not carpeted, get a scrap of carpet and set the machine on that.
-Make sure there is proper front-to-back airflow so the machine can breathe.
- Do not enclose the PC where it cannot breathe. The fans will quickly spin up to full speed.
Beyond that, there isn't a whole lot you can do except send back the Dell and, using suggestions from this forum, building your own silent PC. The reason I had short patience with you before is that it seemed to me like you were very bothered by me telling you something you didn't want to hear (that there isn't a whole lot you can do for a closely-integrated system like the Dell XPS.) And hence your earlier reply, questioning whether I actually knew what I was talking about.
Rory have you heard it or are you guessing
FYI, it's called an educated
guess. I have not heard the Dell XPS but what I know about fans and cooling tells me not to have very high expectations for the Dell. Clearly, significant steps have been taken to make sure the system is not super loud even with the hot 3.06GHz processors, but the system shoud not be expected to meet the same standard of quietness that the Dimension and OptiPlex towers have set. DELL says the machine is quiet. As of yet, the reviewers are silent on the matter. You can't always trust the word of the manufacturers, but you should give Dell tech support a buzz and see if they can offer any explanation for the loudness of your Dell XPS.
There. Maybe that won't sound like I'm an "enraged idiot". That wasn't my intention in the first place. I hope you will understand, after my more thorough explanation above, why I didn't offer much advice of what you could
do on your own to quiet the XPS.