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 Post subject: Zalman HD135 /Ahnix D5 /Origen HV5 cooling and silencing
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 6:53 am 
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Location: Italy
I just lost the post that I was writing :( So this will be a shorter version.

This is the configuration that will be inside
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... p?p=371250

I choose the zalman after 2 WEEKS of searching, because it just LOOKS decent in the hi-fi room. And I dont have 800$ to spend on a A-Tech. The overall budget (excluding existing components) is around 1000€. Any commercially made htpc with similar characteristics costs double that.

OK, so this post is how to make the poor-performing zalman quite and nice (yes, i have read the review and all the posts in the old thread).
This is the list of changes that I'm gonna make (sorry if it's not detailed as it was but i lost my post :( -thanks firefox):

1. Remove the exhaust fan (worthless and noisy)

2. Remove both HDD cages. And put the HD over a foam sheet, and in a NoVibes (actually the Vantec clone). When I will need to add more HDDs I have to find a way to position the drives better and probably use the space on the other side of the dvdrom as well. I'm NOT good at bricolage :(

3. Add 120mm silent case fans: I was thinking One sucking air in the front left vent and one exhaust onto the right side, after the HDD.
Which fans? I have access to all the recommended fans, plus the papst for cheap - 15€ each. I dont like to undervolt, because i dont need a totally silent machine. 25db would be fine, possibly a little less. So the Nexus as its default 12v speed would be perfect.

4. More fans: the vent above the mainboard at the back could host 2 60mm fans. They are indeed used on the Origen and Ahnix cases of similar size. Are they worth it?
Alternatively I could put another 120mm fan on the left back vent, but this may need to go when i'll add more pci cards (audio and tuners), unless i can find a pci-e DVB-S HD tuner.

5. Rubber/silicone fan dampening: are these stuff worth it? I plan to use plastic screws anyway, so maybe these are overkill. The one for the PSU probably is not.

6. case dampening: would something like Magic Fleece really help? i'm concerned about the case resonance. Keep in mind that there will be the AMP over the HTPC and that will put some 10kg weight and absorb lots of vibrations.

I think this is all. Comments/suggestions welcome :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 8:31 am 
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2) For additional storage, just use eSATA -- a terabyte drive 5 feet away on a foam pad in an Antec MX1 will be plenty and quiet.

3) This will probably work fine -- but play with blow direction. When you're ready to fix them in place, use thick double-sided sticky tape and you'll get vibration damping too.

4) Not sure of 60mm fans are worth it. I'd avoid them unless necessary. You'd have to cut away the silly "grill" in the back anyway. Try the extra 120mm fan instead.

5) The amp will stop the panel from vibrating much; and there won't be much to begin with. You don't need magic fleece. You might benefit from a bit of acoustic damping, however, just a small patch or two to break up standing waves that will case the AIR in the case to resonate. (This is true for just about every case, btw.)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 10:29 am 
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I'm still reading more review, phew. The terminology I used for the sound dampening stuff is not correct.

MikeC wrote:
2) For additional storage, just use eSATA -- a terabyte drive 5 feet away on a foam pad in an Antec MX1 will be plenty and quiet.


Until they change the price of external drives and enclosures, this is too expensive. The total capacity will grow to 3TB in a couple years. Also, I don't have any space 5 or 10 feets away.
The second disk can be mounted the same way on the left side of the case, but after that I will need a creative DIY solution.

I'm happy with eSATA for monthly backups, not for something to be kept powered in the living room all the time.

MikeC wrote:
3) This will probably work fine -- but play with blow direction. When you're ready to fix them in place, use thick double-sided sticky tape and you'll get vibration damping too.


Interesting DIY idea. I must find black tape, though, otherwise it would look bad on the front sides. I also enquired my retailer about the black/white nexus. The orange one is a definite no-no for the "front sides" vents.

MikeC wrote:
4) Not sure of 60mm fans are worth it. I'd avoid them unless necessary. You'd have to cut away the silly "grill" in the back anyway. Try the extra 120mm fan instead.


Agreed. Ditched the 60mm, I'll use a third 120 mm.
I have free will on which side to mount the fan on the ninja mini and that could help the airflow. Pushing towards that back silly grill may be the best option.

MikeC wrote:
5/6) The amp will stop the panel from vibrating much; and there won't be much to begin with. You don't need magic fleece. You might benefit from a bit of acoustic damping, however, just a small patch or two to break up standing waves that will case the AIR in the case to resonate. (This is true for just about every case, btw.)


Please explain which kind of acoustic damping stuff should be used here.

Also, next year I will replace that 2.0 amp with a 7.1 HT one that could be too heavy to be put on top of this case, so the HTPC will pop-up and the vibration problem will be present again. So I would prefer to address it right now. I'm reading about different materials and brands, but I dont have a great choice here.

More about the mainboard and heat on the other thread.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:56 am 
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Telstar (or anyone else) did you get anywhere with your plans for the HD135?

I own a HD135 as well and want to optimize the internals and cooling to make it as silent as possible.

The hardware consists of:
- integrated video mainboard (t.b.d.)
- 1x DVD drive (5,25")
- 1x 3,5" HDD (storage, on suspend most of the time)
- 1x 2,5" HDD (boot+music)

The stock fans have been removed because they are useless.

I was thinking about modding or fabricating a new HDD tray in the center to put all 3 drives in it.
This would make it possible to remove both 3,5" HDD trays and replace them with a 120mm fan at about 30-45 degrees to the front panel.
Would this be a good/smart setup?

Combined with a PSU with the bottom/intake opening to the inside of the case (to suck out the warm air) would this be sufficiënt?
Would it be usefull to mount 1 or 2 60mm exhaust fans over the I/O panel (do silent 60mm fans even exist?)?

For the CPU cooler I am looking at something like the Ninja Mini (probably passive, just being cooled by the 120mm fans) or something like the Corsair H50 (for which I would put the radiator+fan on the rear fan opening, probably blowing the warm air out).
Which would be the better option?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:18 am 
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aaahaaap wrote:
1. I was thinking about modding or fabricating a new HDD tray in the center to put all 3 drives in it.
This would make it possible to remove both 3,5" HDD trays and replace them with a 120mm fan at about 30-45 degrees to the front panel.
Would this be a good/smart setup?

2. Combined with a PSU with the bottom/intake opening to the inside of the case (to suck out the warm air) would this be sufficiënt?

3. Would it be usefull to mount 1 or 2 60mm exhaust fans over the I/O panel (do silent 60mm fans even exist?)?

4. For the CPU cooler I am looking at something like the Ninja Mini (probably passive, just being cooled by the 120mm fans) or something like the Corsair H50 (for which I would put the radiator+fan on the rear fan opening, probably blowing the warm air out).
Which would be the better option?

1. Sure -- depends on whether the HDDs can be soft-mounted.

2. Nope -- not if you use a quiet PSU; they have only enough airflow to keep themselves cool, and that config will heat up the PSU, possibly making its fan speed up much more often.

3. 2 60mms are needed because if half the opening is left free, it'll become an airflow short-circuit. But you're right that quiet 60mm fans are rare. Also, the high impedance of the grill holes will make any fans mounted there noisy -- you could enlarge those holes fairly easily... if you can do precise drilling.

4. Forget the Corsair H50 -- it does not belong in a quiet pc, imo. Residual noise of the pump is way too high. See our review. You might be better off with a very good top-down HSF that leaves about an inch clearance between top vent and the fan -- any closer and due to the high impedance of the grill, turbulence noise will increase a lot with higher fan speeds. Assuming the top vent is close enough to your cpu/socket.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 3:10 am 
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Thank you for your answer Mike!

I was wondering if in general a setup with only exhaust fans (as used on both Antec Fusion cases) is preferred to a setup with more intake than exhaust fans or a setup with only intake fans?

If so, what would be a smart way to do so in the HD135?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 8:22 am 
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aaahaaap --

You don't mention your cpu but assuming it's under 100w tdp and you don't stress it 100% for >20 mins (like in stress tests), you don't have to worry about general case in/out fans -- because there are so many vents in the case for heat to escape and the overall amount of heat is modest. Intake fans make more sense as you can direct the airflow to specific spots more easily.

I built a silent pc in that case with a single ssd and a 65w tdp cpu. A scythe Zipang 2 cooler was used with the stock fan at very low fixed speed, and a Nexus 120 fan (at low speed) as an intake near the front left vent. It worked great. This setup should work fine for you too. Just make sure there is at least a couple inches of clearance all around the case.

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Editor/Publisher, SPCR
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