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 Post subject: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ review)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:59 pm 
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I'm going to be a wet blanket and fundamentally question these kinds of reviews.
This is, after all, "silentpcreview", rather than "NotAsLoudExtremeGamers".
There are are more than 300 million Windows systems sold every year, no more than a couple of percent of which are gaming oriented. Those few percents of users are very well catered to by tech sites on the internet, indeed, I'd say that in spite of being a relatively small niche, the focus on gaming oriented products dominate.

The groups of people interested in quiet computing is by far greater. People interested in clerical work, audio and video production and consumption, photo editing, nightly downloading, working on presentations and papers, doing graphical design and other creative work - these are all interested in having systems suitable for their needs, and unobtrusive so as not to distract or disturb. Game play is one of the things where some moderate noise actually isn't all that critical, and above all, game players as a group don't seem to be too concerned. Noise sensitive gamers are a niche within a niche.

Furthermore, with the advent of FDB hard drives, not to mention SSDs, the reason we have noisy computers at all is excessive power draw. And the one group that has helped drive that trend (along with tech site cheerleading) is benchmark happy tech fetishists hiding behind the gaming justification. While I can recognize that these massive power draw "gaming" systems represent a kind of challenge for silencing experts, ultimately their justification and their promoters is the root of the problem in the first place. If you want a quiet system, step one is to minimize the level of power draw required to fulfill your needs, and then you try to be intelligent about how to deal with the remaining problem. However, the justification of these systems are not need. It's a bit like discussing fuel economy in top fuel drag racing...

I feel that SPCR by these articles reinforces the problem, as opposed to promoting silent computing systems by working with technology and attitudes both.

My 2c. Even as a guy who actually fits within that niche within a niche.


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 Post subject: Re: Arctic Cooling Accelero Xtreme Plus GPU Cooler
PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 2:15 pm 
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Entropy --

So we should stick reviewing low power fanless devices that don't need our expertise for people to know they're quiet? :lol:

Several counterpoints --

1. everything changes. even silent computing and spcr. even a quiet computer was a challenge >8 yrs ago. today, quiet is not hard to achieve if you use any of the SPCR recommended pages for a guide. Silent is fairly simple for an experienced DIYer (or one with deep pockets) if you go fanless and/or low power.

2. silent gaming rigs are cutting edge, and there's a great deal of interest. this is a gut feel, but I bet more than half the active audience at spcr do at least some gaming, and they don't want the pc to be noisy even when they game.

3. we still review lots of gear aimed not at high end gamers.

4. finally I challenge your statement, "the reason we have noisy computers at all is excessive power draw". There are lots of noisy 120W max PCs for just the audience you say wants quiet. Not as noisy as they used to be but still not quiet by SPCR standards.

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 Post subject: Re: Arctic Cooling Accelero Xtreme Plus GPU Cooler
PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 3:25 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
Entropy --

So we should stick reviewing low power fanless devices that don't need our expertise for people to know they're quiet? :lol:

Several counterpoints --

1. everything changes. even silent computing and spcr. even a quiet computer was a challenge >8 yrs ago. today, quiet is not hard to achieve if you use any of the SPCR recommended pages for a guide. Silent is fairly simple for an experienced DIYer (or one with deep pockets) if you go fanless and/or low power.

2. silent gaming rigs are cutting edge, and there's a great deal of interest. this is a gut feel, but I bet more than half the active audience at spcr do at least some gaming, and they don't want the pc to be noisy even when they game.

3. we still review lots of gear aimed not at high end gamers.

4. finally I challenge your statement, "the reason we have noisy computers at all is excessive power draw". There are lots of noisy 120W max PCs for just the audience you say wants quiet. Not as noisy as they used to be but still not quiet by SPCR standards.


I can see your points (1-3), I simply contributed my feeling that the focus computer technology sites place on extreme (graphical) performance computers is very skewed in relation to actual computer use, and that this attention is a strong force pushing desktop computer technology to ever increasing power draws. Which makes your stance a bit ironic - are your helping with the problem, or reinforcing trends that go counter to the overall ethos of the site? Both? (There is no question that computing in general is moving to ever more mobile devices, so the tech site focus on the extreme power hogs is, lets call it, odd.)

In answer to point 4 - there are no noisy tablets. These days, desktop systems are the domain of administration and some conservative diehards (like myself). Laptops is where it's happening in terms of consumer Windows systems, and cooling there is challenged by space and power both. 120W isn't a problem for a desktop system, but definitely for a laptop and there is a lot of interesting stuff going in terms of technology there now, and in the near future from both AMD and Intel, and even more profound, the phone players who are moving up in the ecosystem. The desktop is no longer the norm, it is the dinosaur of computing. Powerful but dying. The new devices demonstrate to people that they do not need 120W, 3W will do just fine.

Perhaps it is the destiny for SPCR to become "FairlyQuietOverclockers".
But even so, that still leaves you a choice in what you promote as the computing norm, and where in your opinion it should be heading.


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:21 pm 
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Aren't all PC hardware tech web sites increasingly niche? :lol:

The ethos of the site was and is about quiet. Through much of SPCR's existence, lower power/thermal was necessary for quiet. Today, it increasingly isn't as necessary, though our preference for green remains.

If you think that our paying attention to some OC- and gaming-oriented but still extremely quiet (or quiet-able) gear is going to add to the niche high power trend... or more apropos, if you think that our NOT paying attention to such gear is going to push buyers & sellers to the greener side, then you overestimate SPCR's influence in the world. I see it as expanding our reach to a larger audience, and spreading our msg of quieter is better to more computer users.

SPCR cannot change mainstream trends. Gamers do dominate the $$ value of DIY computer components and systems. The people who don't stress their PCs as much as gamers also spend less on gear, and are much less active in DIY. They buy complete systems like tablets, laptops etc... where the noise level is generally low enough that SPCR participation/reviews do not appear to be valued.

I also have several laptops... mostly of good quality and design, with modest noise levels, a couple w/ SSDs. But none are really as quiet as the quietest desktops here.

SPCR -- perhaps like desktops -- is destined to disappear sooner or later.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:05 am 
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I'd beg to differ that any useful technology on the high end can also come down to help with lower end devices. This is very similar to the trends in cars, many high end technologies are now things that we can get in inexpensive vehicles. Such as dual clutch transmissions used to be only in the 50k+ market, now you can get one in a ford fiesta. Similarly, anything that helps with cooling efficiency will help us with keeping a quiet and low power computer also. Heatpipes were one of those major improvements that are now everywhere. I hope you keep reviewing anything in the world of quiet, doesn't matter which market segment as long as it's useful :)

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:06 am 
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I also wondered Mike, out of the silent PC enthusiasts, what percentage games? It would be an interesting poll.

To me, the challenge of building a PC that is effectively silent (e.g. cannot be heard above noise floor) is all but gone. The challenge now lies in building a PC that is effectively silent, and goes like stink.

To borrow your drag racing analogy, I'd like to paraphrase the ethos in motorsport, that it is a lot easier to make a reliable car fast, than make a fast car reliable.
With silent gaming, we shoot for silent first, then powerful. It's a lot easier than making a powerful PC silent.

Like the review says, GPUs are now the noisiest component, and part of the problem lies in the way the graphics card mounts. Ideally one could have a separate set of sockets on the mobo, into which you could plug your GDDR and GPU, and attach a cooler as large as those used for CPUs.

Until then, reviews such as this one that measure the effectiveness of a solution which crams a large cooler into the limited space offered by vertical mounting are invaluable. Especially when it offers concrete evidence that the design works well :)

To be honest, I don't see the "problem" that you mention. Sure, such a review appeals to a niche within a niche. But I get the feeling that SPCR was founded on the principles of doing what they felt was right, and trying to meet a challenge (silent computing) - not by appealing to the masses.


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:10 am 
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I'm simply going to say that I game and I want high fps in high resolution and high detail.

But when I am not playing I really want complete silence!

And when I am playing, while its true that the game audio drowns out some PC noise, still the quieter the PC is the lower I can keep the audio volume without losing immersion as I don't want to damage my hearing. And it definitely helps in being able to decipher what my pals say in the ingame voice chat if there is less noise in the background.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:54 am 
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How about SPCR folders ? They want machines that have to be quiet on max load, because they run under max load all the time !! That's a niche market too, but I'm in it :) Of course, you don't have to have a power hungry machine to fold (and that can make it easy to quiet down), but some people do have machines that pull quite a bit of power and it is a challenge to get those quiet.

So it makes sense for SPCR to review m-ITX boards and m-ITX cases with a big CPU and GPU (mini gamming system). If they make it quiet, you know that with a smaller CPU and a smaller GPU (like in an HTPC), it'll be a piece of cake to keep the machine quiet enough. Same thing with mid towers and 600W PSUs. For most people with basic needs, it'll be overkill. For a hardcore folder or a hardcore gamer, it'll be just about right.

As mentionned before by Mike, the market has changed from (quotes are mine) "hard to make any machine quiet" to "easy to have a fully passive machine but still a challenge to have a quiet powerfull machine". I think SPCR is right in line with the way the market is moving.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:15 am 
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My take on this subject is this :

Along with low noise and low power seems to be increasingly (!) smaller size.
As well as advising us all on quieting high noise/high power systems, SPCR does a sterling job of advising on what's happening in smaller/lower power systems.
In this sort of system even the slightest noise increase can be an issue because the noise making bits are usually nearer to the user than normal.

Example :
A decent gaming rig usually sits on the floor on a noise reducing surface with fans pointing away from the user (and under a desk).
A small general purpose system usually can't sit on the floor (too small) and so has to be within 2feet (?) of the ears. So probably isn't on a noise reducing surface (desk top carpeting anyone ?).
If the keyboard/mouse/monitor combo also came with a built-in DVD unit and a remote on/off button then I suppose the "box" could be anywhere.

SPCR is wise (IMO) in avoiding the very niche small system issues (In-car etc), but low/small general systems are equally of interest as high/big versions in advancing the art of SPC.


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 6:40 am 
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MikeC wrote:
SPCR -- perhaps like desktops -- is destined to disappear sooner or later.


Well that's not leveraging your investment. If desktop PCs ever became uncommon you could branch out into consumer electronics in general. Change the name to Silent Electronics Review or Silent Equipment Review. The nice thing about domain names is you can have an unlimited number of domains pointing to one web site. Pick as many names as make sense. Each name costs you another $2-$7 a year.

The key is you have a solid testing setup in place. Why not use it even if you are testing toasters and hairdryers? I'm sure better examples could be chosen I just went for the outlandish. :twisted:

As to the video card argument I'm of the opinion the interesting space is around the 75W barrier for a PCIe card with no 4pin or 6 pin power connectors. Cards in the 60-75W range are perfect for fanless setup and no extra cables. Cards in the 75-100W range require larger heatsinks to go fanless and require that power cable but are still reasonable. Cards in the 100W+ range are where I'd use a heatsink + slow fan(s) but I'd rather not bother.

If you are going to review stock video cards with no end user level modifications I'd ask that you not review cards with a TDP above 100W unless they are reference designs. And I'd not give a reference design an editors choice award unless it is fanless.

If you are going to review after market heatsinks for video cards, I'm all for continuing as you always have. Pick one or two TDP levels and test all heatsinks that fit on the reference card(s).

Those of us willing to stay below the high wattage limits will do so will taking in the knowledge of what works or doesn't with cards that are "too much".

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 6:47 am 
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I wandered onto this site 5 years ago looking for ways to quiet my gaming PC. Now, a third to half of my posts deal with helping people figure out what GPU is best (noise vs. horsepower vs cost) for their apps. I think the reviews done here, plus the help provided in the forums, provide a voice of reason to the gaming community.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:31 am 
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dhanson865 wrote:
MikeC wrote:
SPCR -- perhaps like desktops -- is destined to disappear sooner or later.


Well that's not leveraging your investment. If desktop PCs ever became uncommon you could branch out into consumer electronics in general. Change the name to Silent Electronics Review or Silent Equipment Review. The nice thing about domain names is you can have an unlimited number of domains pointing to one web site. Pick as many names as make sense. Each name costs you another $2-$7 a year.

The key is you have a solid testing setup in place. Why not use it even if you are testing toasters and hairdryers? I'm sure better examples could be chosen I just went for the outlandish. :twisted:

Yes, what you say is all true. I do have silentappliances.com... which I picked up after a debacle while buying a new fridge last year. Don't think it's something I can do independent of a store or distributor, tho. Hard to imagine shuffling fridge and stove samples in/out of the house. :lol: :roll: :lol:

I was really thinking more broadly when I wrote that SPCR and desktops will disappear -- everything has a life cycle, everything comes and goes, nothing is permanent: This, too, shall pass.

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 Post subject: Re: Arctic Cooling Accelero Xtreme Plus GPU Cooler
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:18 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
This, too, shall pass

Can't argue with that. Worth engraving on a ring.

But I'll take issue with the following:
MikeC wrote:
So we should stick reviewing low power fanless devices that don't need our expertise for people to know they're quiet?

Which fanless devices? How many people are using tablets or smartphones as their main PC?
Most laptops still make a fair bit of noise, especially when they're not configured to waste as little power as possible. I wish more manufacturers would send SPCR samples.
Desktops are still something people are going to want unless they only watch movies or they're comfortable using a laptop. I'm cool with laptops myself but I'm weird. People want the big, quality screens and the full-size keyboards. And they don't want a docking station with their laptop. It's too complicated and they'd need to carry the laptop all the time. They actually like not being able to do all their desky things when they're away their desks.
And even if people decidedly moved towards mobile devices, that would only mean more small servers or HTPCs set up where people can hear them. There's not mcuh difference between cooling a small desktop and a small server.

Fanless desktops are fairly easy to achieve nowadays but I know of exactly two fanless desktops on the market. They're Atoms and, for all I know, badly cooled. And I know of exactly three normal-looking cases on the market adequate for fanless operation of desktop Atoms without modding. Look at the D510MO thread: temps >70C, custom heatsink, MOSFET cooling and so on. So we're not quite there yet even for people willing to use Atoms. Obviously, a lot of people are going to want something faster but would be happy with something like an underclocked/undervolted Clarksdale or Regor coupled with entry-level graphics. Who sells fanless gear like that again? AMD sells low-voltage CPUs but it's not trivial to get a build like that right!
We're still going to use fans on low-power gear for the foreseeable future. And that's not trivial enough to get right without some expertise. Look at how much noise the HP's new Microserver makes. You have a sample, Mike so you know if I got a dud or if they're not as quiet as they should be. We're talking about a 1.3Ghz dual-core and a mobile chipset! This is about as low-power as it gets. I'm not saying it would have been very hard for HP to get it right but they didn't bother. So, unless one of the few top-tier global OEMs that doesn't suck is negociating Mike's new salary as we speak, we're still going to need SPCR.
Rant over... alomst.

I wish SPCR would pay more attention to low-power options and take them more seriously and I agree with Entropy that we need low-power products to be pushed more, if only to curb pollution. But there's little SPCR can do about that. It would take some serious industrial/marketing muscle. It would be a shame if SPCR's main audience was people who buy gear to play the newest games but that would be our collective failure to get the word out, to provide people with efficient software and to build businesses which sell low-power PCs.


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:53 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
Hard to imagine shuffling fridge and stove samples in/out of the house. :lol: :roll: :lol:


Yes, but think of the free exercise you'll get, reviewing, say, a 7 foot tall, 48 inch wide, 650 lb, $9500 Sub Zero BI48 refrigerator like this. :lol:

Jokes aside, something like silentappliances.com would be of great value to those of us who research every purchase we make. Especially so if you reviewed build quality and performance too.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:09 pm 
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N7SC wrote:
Yes, but think of the exercise you'll get, reviewing, say, a 7 foot tall, 48 inch wide, 750 lb, $9500 Sub Zero BI48 refrigerator like this. :lol:

More like how many hernias will I develop and whether they'll kill me... :lol:
Quote:
Jokes aside, something like silentappliances.com would be of great value to those of us who research every purchase we make. Especially so if you reviewed build quality and performance too.

I wasn't joking about silentappliances.com. I actually wrote a business plan and approached the manager of the service dept of a major appliance wholesaler in Vancouver. This was someone I met in my trials and tribulations who turned out to have great technical knowledge and long history in the business, and had a real appreciation of what I could do with acoustic / vibration / quality reviews. But after initial interest, he backed away.

The keys for me to succeed at this....
1. a steady easy flow of samples (and big muscled guy with strong dolly :wink: )
2. a quiet enough mock or real kitchen with well designed locations for specific appliances to be installed/removed easily
3. support or at least cooperation from the industry
4. acoustic, thermal and electrical measurement gear (of which I have a pretty complete set)
5. a tech adviser (like the fellow I mentioned) who could provide deep insights about whys/hows

I'd kill Consumer Reports, which seems to be the only source of any systematic approach to acoustics in appliances. Terribly limited info! The audience is at least 10X times bigger than that for quiet PCs.

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 Post subject: Re: Arctic Cooling Accelero Xtreme Plus GPU Cooler
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:23 pm 
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HFat wrote:
I wish SPCR would pay more attention to low-power options and take them more seriously and I agree with Entropy that we need low-power products to be pushed more, if only to curb pollution. But there's little SPCR can do about that. It would take some serious industrial/marketing muscle. It would be a shame if SPCR's main audience was people who buy gear to play the newest games but that would be our collective failure to get the word out, to provide people with efficient software and to build businesses which sell low-power PCs.

I'm surprised you would write this. More than any other site around, we've been examining measuring energy efficiency and applauding low power computer products for years (starting with the very first efficiency measurements in PSUs going back like 7-8 years). When VIA was the only game in town, we were firmly behind them, reviewing a ton of their stuff. I even wrote their white paper on energy, ecology and noise in computing! We did the first low-power focused CPU roundup some years ago when mobile-on-desktop was first coming on strong. We were consulted on the 80+ testing procedure (because SPCR was about the only tech site paying serious attn to efficiency before 80+) and I wrote some of the first articles on the topic. Today, we always report and applaud the lowest power devices... in idle and peak.

But there's only so much time in the day, we cover a lot of ground and a lot of product types, and we are currently just 2 full timers. If anyone knows anyone smart, hardworking and tech savvy (or even business savvy) in the Vancouver area who wants to be an active staff member of this long, ongoing, somewhat niche, highly interdisciplinary and perhaps ecologically enlightened project that is SPCR, send them to me, pls!

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:41 pm 
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Just because you're the best doesn't mean you can't do better. Did I mention another site doing better work? I wouldn't be posting this if you didn't care about low-power. But I think you could care more. A couple of examples:
I mentionned the D510MO. This was kind of a breakthrough when it comes to low-power computing for the masses. Not to mention the fanless potential. SPCR's reviews usually post temps but not this time. Why? Because it's fanless out of the box? But fanless means you've got to pay attention to temperatues and it would have been useful to know not only if the temperatures are low enough with this case but also if they are low enough that one can even think about cases with less airflow.
For your home server guide, you only mentionned low-power options in passing. You know you don't need a Clarksdale or AMD equivalent for a file server. Even the Atom board you mentionned in passing was fairly high-power for an Atom. I understand there's a problem with the number of SATA ports available on low-power boards and I understand everything low-power except Atom is expensive but is requiring a PCI controller really a deal-breaker? Even if it was, there are Atom server boards with 6 SATA ports. I've never used one but one would hope the people at SuperMicro know what they're doing for instance and that some would make nice, reliable boards for a home server. Certainly they would be beat the 29W at idle of the lowest-power board compared in this article which doesn't even have 6 SATA ports.
I get the impression that the stuff that's not as powerful than current-generation mainstream desktop gear and Atom in particular is being looked down upon. Certainly it's not being recommended a lot.


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:25 pm 
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Location: San Jose
Yeah, I think SPCR does a pretty great job at reviewing a wide range of things. My computers tend to be higher powered, and I really appreciate the reviews for high end gear. If you check out the OC or high end gaming sites, their reviews tend to ignore noise or give it a line or two with phrases like 'it was quieter than most' or some dubious 35+db noise floor measurements. So while there may be plenty of high end gaming review sites, I think SPCR is really the only site that caters directly to anyone specifically concerned about noise. If they cut off the high end community they'd be narrowing their niche even more. There's also the question of what kind of companies actually send samples here. If a company is promoting a quiet cooler, they're a lot more likely to send it here than Dell is to send their whole laptop lineup. It would be great to see more laptop and mainstream desktop reviews, but even with those you don't get the worst case noise out of them unless you push them, so reviewing stuff that quiets worst case noisy components makes sense. If you do buy an off the shelf system with cheap whiny fans, high end video card upgrades or whatever other components, SPCR is great at giving you some options for fixing it yourself.

In the future, as computing power becomes more efficient and more naturally quiet, it may be harder for the site to hold on, and that would be pretty sad, I'd hate to see this site disappear. I don't think this site could hang on by reviewing cell phones and tablets, but there are certainly computing devices showing up with dubious fans that they could review. I see these new apple and google TV set tops, and wonder how many of them have crappy 40mm fans in the back. But are those going to bring new people to the site? Maybe, I hope so, but like it or not, gamers do have big noise problems, and if they look for solutions, they'll probably wind up here. So with a mix of reviews for some systems with a lot of big noise sources and some systems with a few annoying noise sources works for me, and probably brings in the best mix of traffic. And hey, if you see a review for a piece of hardware that offends your sensibilities, just skip it, that'll save some power in your web browser and keep your Atom nice and cool. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:31 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 6:48 am
Posts: 717
Location: San Francisco, CA
Yep I should say I'm a gamer too, not really high end, but I would prefer a video card like a Radeon 6850. That's not the easiest thing to keep quiet. My goal is to have a silent, but very fast pc. I also dislike fanless because fanless means poorer cooling. I'd prefer the lowest temperature, lowest noise, and fastest device possible. It's a fight to get a balance, but I have no interest in a slow boring fanless computer. And yes, I love having more speed, with less power, that's called progress. Progress is what this whole computer world is all about.

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 1:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:30 am
Posts: 419
Location: Italy
HFat wrote:
Just because you're the best doesn't mean you can't do better. Did I mention another site doing better work? I wouldn't be posting this if you didn't care about low-power. But I think you could care more. A couple of examples:
I mentionned the D510MO. This was kind of a breakthrough when it comes to low-power computing for the masses. Not to mention the fanless potential. SPCR's reviews usually post temps but not this time. Why? Because it's fanless out of the box? But fanless means you've got to pay attention to temperatues and it would have been useful to know not only if the temperatures are low enough with this case but also if they are low enough that one can even think about cases with less airflow.
For your home server guide, you only mentionned low-power options in passing. You know you don't need a Clarksdale or AMD equivalent for a file server. Even the Atom board you mentionned in passing was fairly high-power for an Atom. I understand there's a problem with the number of SATA ports available on low-power boards and I understand everything low-power except Atom is expensive but is requiring a PCI controller really a deal-breaker? Even if it was, there are Atom server boards with 6 SATA ports. I've never used one but one would hope the people at SuperMicro know what they're doing for instance and that some would make nice, reliable boards for a home server. Certainly they would be beat the 29W at idle of the lowest-power board compared in this article which doesn't even have 6 SATA ports.
I get the impression that the stuff that's not as powerful than current-generation mainstream desktop gear and Atom in particular is being looked down upon. Certainly it's not being recommended a lot.

Is it worth complaining for not showing temperatures on an 18w system? I'm losing your point. You can find both the D510M0 and all of the current platforms, in most of the available formats (ITX, mATX, ATX), reviewed here. All of them are either critiqued or praised for their power consumptions, and compared one each other. One thing I see in that particular review is the comparison between the 3 Atom platforms available (standard 1st gen., ION 1st gen., and 2nd gen.), essentially covering all of the possible combinations you can buy today. All of the best CPU coolers get regularly reviewed and judged as a whole, not only for their performance, but also for their size, mounting scheme (both of these extremely important in SFF, low-powered machines), price and effectiveness on quietly cooling a wide range of CPUs (checking the difference between testing with stock and overclocked frequencies). You can also find any video card ranging from the HD5450 to the HD5870, and most of the solutions available to cool them efficiently and quietly, with extremely detailed disquisitions on noise and power efficiency. Yet you want them to drop the high-end market altogether, just for the sake of "focusing" on low performance, low power consumption parts. What's the point in doing that when you can have the best of both worlds? :?

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 Post subject: Re: What should SPCR review? (offshoot of Accelero Xtreme+ r
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 10:16 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 12:02 am
Posts: 40
Location: Denmark
Silentappliances sound like a great idea. Meanwhile, could a subforum be created here, where we(me) could ask for advice concerning quiet items.
For instance, every DVD-player I have ever heard have been noisy, but perhaps there is at least 1 player in existance that is quiet. With regards to TVs, reviewers seem exclusively occupied with picture quality and not seem concerned with high frequency noise emanations.
Would be interested in reviews regarding refrigerators, aircondition, lightbulbs, radiators and boilerroom silencing etc.
Oh and that double-noise everytime a door gets closed should be removed(1 bump when door reaches door-frame and another when hand leaves handle).


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