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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 3:31 am 
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Posts: 89
Location: Australia
Monkeh16 wrote:

The configuration is fairly simple:
Code:
astriaporta munin # cat plugin-conf.d/munin-node
[cpu]

[cpuspeed]

[hddtemp_smartctl]
user root
group root
env.drives sda sdb sdc sdd

[memory]

[sensors_*]
astriaporta munin # ls -al plugins/
total 4.0K
drwxr-xr-x 2 root root 2.0K May  7 11:30 ./
drwxr-xr-x 7 root root 2.0K May  7 11:31 ../
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   30 May  7 11:30 cpu -> /usr/libexec/munin/plugins/cpu*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   35 May  7 11:30 cpuspeed -> /usr/libexec/munin/plugins/cpuspeed*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   43 May  7 11:30 hddtemp_smartctl -> /usr/libexec/munin/plugins/hddtemp_smartctl*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   33 May  7 11:30 memory -> /usr/libexec/munin/plugins/memory*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   35 May  7 11:30 sensors_temp -> /usr/libexec/munin/plugins/sensors_*




Thanks for the help... I'm not yet good enough with Linux that I know what to do with what you've provided, though :D Time to do some Googling...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 3:35 am 
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Pierre wrote:
Quote:
Following on from the above HDD enclosure that's been installed... with the standard Noctua fan in front the hard drives are running way too cold. At 19 degrees ambient the HDs were being kept in the low 20s which imho is way too cold for a drive. So I put on both the LNA and ULNA that came with one of the other Noctua fans... there's still more than enough airflow past the drives (done by a basic "hand behind it" test) and the HDD temps have risen to between 32 and 37 degrees, which I'm much happier with. The 120mm fan is inaudible in this setup. I foresee taking out the LNA in summer at the very least...

Since we can't put in more than 6 HDDs until the rest of the stuff arrives I've filled some of the empty slots with old HDDs that we have laying around to simulate the amount of stuff that'll be in the way of the airflow once everything's set up. I had a look at the upper HDD cage and found that quite a bit of the airflow from the front 140mm fan was escaping around the sides of the cage and slipping past the HDDs on either side, greatly reducing the amount of airflow over the drives themselves. A bit of adhesive foam around the edges later:
...
The airflow coming over the middle of the drives and out the inside of the HDD cage has greatly increased following this mod, which made me quite happy. This allowed me to downvolt the front Noctua 140mm fans and still be sitting in the low 30s temperature-wise. I'll be interested to see what happens to temps once four drives are on and in there, though.

Good to hear the hdds are cooled very effectively in the upper compartment, and nice trick for directing airflow...
It's not all that clear though, and pardon my potentially stupid question, if all four drives in the main compartment were powered on (??) or some served just as obstacles to airflow...sorry for that...

Quote:
So... to keep myself occupied inbetween now and when a new CPU/mobo/raid card arrives I'll swap some of the HDDs to the lower bay and see what the temps are like down there.
Hooray!! This is my only main concern with this case since I would keep all the bottom hdd trays occupied, and if the results are good, I might give it a go...



Not a stupid question! Currently the drives that aren't connected to the motherboard are off, but since I have to put in the power cables for the rest of the drives anyway in preparation for the RAID card arriving I'm going to toss in all of the old SATA drives we have laying around and power them on... I'll stick one of the system drives in the rearmost set in the bottom compartment and see how the temps fare with five other drives running ;) That probably won't be until late this week or early next week, though - there's a few time constraints on how much I can play with this setup at the moment as it has to be running and accessible most of the day and night :/


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 4:12 am 
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Jim,

I don't particularly recommend Googling to figure this out. Simply run the commands that have been provided to you and compare the output with what's been posted here.
The missing piece of information which might have thrown you off is that these commands need to be run in munin's configuration directory. If yours is /etc/munin/, you can get there with the command "cd /etc/munin".

Maybe you should experiment in a VM or something but in general, I'd say you'll figure things out faster if you just run the commands on your system and check "man command" if what they do isn't immediately obvious. Like if you're not sure what cat does, you can type "man cat" (but that shouldn't be necessary because what cat does would become obvious if you simply tried it).

You've been provided with two commands that display two aspects of the configuration:
-the file munin-node which needs to have the list of the drives you want to monitor (you can edit it with any text editor)
-the plugins which have been put in the plugin directory (only hddtemp_smartctl is needed if the only thing you want to monitor are SMART temperatures)
There are different ways to configure munin so it can work even if the configuration looks different (I use a dedicated file to configure the drives I'm monitoring for instance). But the configuration you've been provided should work if you copy it to your server.

Something else might possibly puzzle you so just in case... in order to apply the changes you made to configuration files, you often need to restart the service. I don't know if you need to do so in this case but it's useful to know how to do it. In most Linux distributions, the command "/etc/init.d/munin-node restart" will work.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 2:54 pm 
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HFat wrote:
Jim,

I don't particularly recommend Googling to figure this out. Simply run the commands that have been provided to you and compare the output with what's been posted here.
The missing piece of information which might have thrown you off is that these commands need to be run in munin's configuration directory. If yours is /etc/munin/, you can get there with the command "cd /etc/munin".

Maybe you should experiment in a VM or something but in general, I'd say you'll figure things out faster if you just run the commands on your system and check "man command" if what they do isn't immediately obvious. Like if you're not sure what cat does, you can type "man cat" (but that shouldn't be necessary because what cat does would become obvious if you simply tried it).

You've been provided with two commands that display two aspects of the configuration:
-the file munin-node which needs to have the list of the drives you want to monitor (you can edit it with any text editor)
-the plugins which have been put in the plugin directory (only hddtemp_smartctl is needed if the only thing you want to monitor are SMART temperatures)
There are different ways to configure munin so it can work even if the configuration looks different (I use a dedicated file to configure the drives I'm monitoring for instance). But the configuration you've been provided should work if you copy it to your server.

Something else might possibly puzzle you so just in case... in order to apply the changes you made to configuration files, you often need to restart the service. I don't know if you need to do so in this case but it's useful to know how to do it. In most Linux distributions, the command "/etc/init.d/munin-node restart" will work.


Brilliant - the one thing I was missing was the correct permissions on the file :) Thanks very much for your help - that's cured the headache figuring that out was turning into :)


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 12:53 pm 
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Posts: 1730
Location: Switzerland
You mean you copied the plugin file instead of linking and munin couldn't read it?

Google is great if you understand the problem. But if you're lost, use the community! That said, SPCR is not the most appropriate place for software support.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 3:59 pm 
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HFat wrote:
You mean you copied the plugin file instead of linking and munin couldn't read it?

Google is great if you understand the problem. But if you're lost, use the community! That said, SPCR is not the most appropriate place for software support.


Yep, that's exactly what happened. Half of my issues with Linux seem to be that I'm following directions late at night when I'm tired and then the next day I discover that I didn't follow them correctly, hence my issues :p

I have had some success with the Ubuntu forums re: troubleshooting... less so the Alfresco forums but I think the expected base level of understanding for fine-tuning an Alfresco install is above my current level so I'm not all that surprised.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 4:10 pm 
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Location: Switzerland
You could try there: http://irc.netsplit.de/channels/details ... t=freenode
Or ask on the Alfresco forum about where people go to chat and other support options.
But sort-of-free corportate projects don't necessarily have such a great community as compared to truely community-driven projects so it may be that's all the support you're going to get without paying for it.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 4:17 pm 
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Posts: 89
Location: Australia
HFat wrote:
You could try there: http://irc.netsplit.de/channels/details ... t=freenode
Or ask on the Alfresco forum about where people go to chat and other support options.
But sort-of-free corportate projects don't necessarily have such a great community as compared to truely community-driven projects so it may be that's all the support you're going to get without paying for it.


I think that's pretty much how it is... we're at the point where I'd be happy to pay someone to set this last part up, though! I think I've found a consultant who's able to help us through the issues, though, so hopefully that'll get sorted soon. I have to say that I've been very pleasantly surprised by the Ubuntu community as a whole and also by how powerful Linux is.

Thanks for the link :)


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 4:45 pm 
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Next round of case mods!

I'm a big fan of directed airflow... I always end up using a lot of duct tape/foam/etc. to block off areas and direct airflow over the components it needs to be going over. To that end I'm reducing the dead space in the case, like so:

Image

It's fairly heavy foam originally used for protecting large display cabinets during shipping that I've cut to fit in the empty spaces above/below the HDDs in the lower chamber. There's still ample space left after this:

Image

I don't really see the point of having an extra two thirds of an inch of dead space beneath the holes that airflow goes through; I'm not an airflow engineer by any means, though, so if anyone knows better please feel free to share ;)

I've also added a fair bit of foam around the PSU - will take some photos of that later.

While acoustic dampening isn't the primary goal of this mod it can't hurt - and if the temps improve I may be able to undervolt the front fan even further to keep them in the ideal range.


For Pierre: Temps are fine in the lower chamber with six HDDs powered on! My HDD temps as shown by Munin over a couple of days are averaging between 32 and 36 degrees Celsius with one slow 140mm fan and some foam directing the air over the center of the HDDs and less around the edges. Temps-wise it's essentially keeping them the same as though they were in the Lian Li HDD cage in the upper chamber. I couldn't be happier. Ambient at the moment is somewhere between 20 and 25 degrees.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 7:32 pm 
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Being the genius that I am I forgot to hook up the CPU fan last time I put the case back together... and didn't notice for a day. This had two effects:

CPU temperatures raised 3 degrees at idle (25 to 28 Celsius), and

HDD temps in the top Lian Li cage rose from mid-30s to low-40s Celsius.

Since I'm trying to keep the HDD temps between 30 and 40 this isn't really ideal... I hadn't previously considered how much effect the CPU cooler fan would have in terms of exhausting heat from the HDD cage area but it seems to be significant. I think I would rather have a slow CPU fan + slow 120mm HDD fan than a passively cooled CPU and faster HDD fan so I'm happy to leave things as they are.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 2:01 am 
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Location: Greece
Quote:
For Pierre: Temps are fine in the lower chamber with six HDDs powered on! My HDD temps as shown by Munin over a couple of days are averaging between 32 and 36 degrees Celsius with one slow 140mm fan and some foam directing the air over the center of the HDDs and less around the edges. Temps-wise it's essentially keeping them the same as though they were in the Lian Li HDD cage in the upper chamber. I couldn't be happier. Ambient at the moment is somewhere between 20 and 25 degrees.

For me that's great news!

It means I'll be buying this case as soon as I can afford the luxury to do so...
(...no time to be "wasting" money in Greece with prices flying sky high, wages diving ocean deep, individual work-settlements becoming the norm and "official" unemployment at 15-16% with debt restructuring around the corner...did I mention the IMF, EU, ECB doubled the amount of money that non-effective financial measures must save within 2011 from 3 billion to 6 billion €uros?...high times...)


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 7:03 am 
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Good idea on the foam there. Thanks to the pictures I know exactly what to do now on my R3. Not needing all drive slots I'll even sacrifice two for a little bit of well placed self adhesive foam. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 3:39 am 
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Hi guys,
I have been building a similar project and you may be able to help me with some problems I am having.
I am using the Define XL case to support a 10 hdd raid 6 array for a home server.
I am using Amahi.

My main problem is overheating in the lower hdd chamber.
Dont have exact temps but hot enough to crash the array.

I have added a 14cm fan to the front of the lower hdd chamber
I am going to upgrade the fans to Ty-140's

Is there anything I should do re the orientation of the PSU (seasonic 600)?
Should I remove the panel above the PSU to allow more airflow into the main chamber?
I will mod to prevent air escape from the front fans as you suggested.
PS I dont live anywhere exotic...Im in the UK so its not ambient temps, lol

Thanks in anticipation for any thoughts / advice based on your experiences


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:18 am 
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So, after the above mods... the case is inaudible at more than 1m distance - a huge improvement over our old file server, even with this one using a couple of old and noisy HDDs that I chucked in there. The only audible sound at closer than 1m appears to be the HDDs humming - I strongly suspect it's the two older HDDs that are in there and not the Western Digital Green drives, though.

In other words... not quiet enough - not yet!

I've found somewhere local that stocks some very heavy acoustic padding at an OK price so that's next on the list... in not too long we'll be able to swap out the old HDDs for some more green drives but in the meantime I can fiddle and see how quiet I can make it with the current vibrating drives. The panels only exhibit a very soft vibration when you touch them so I'm hoping that I might even be able to get it silent with the dodgy drives.

More pics to come after it's apart again once more gear arrives...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 5:47 am 
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Regarding soundproofing, if you're in the market for a ready-made solution, my favorite one is Cooltec (395) Universal Kit (link with babelfish translation from German)...

For a thinner solution, I would go with Acoustipack 7mm OEM material, if I wanted to keep the inside of the case - where there is no much room for thicker soundproofing material - as "classy" as possible while maintaining effectiveness...

At some points in my current case I have applied 2mm adhesive tar sheets with mediocre Spire foam...

My issue with industrial solutions is that their foam tends to be quite thick, 16mm usually which can be restricting...
...what kind of material are you talking about specifically and how are you going to apply it? (on top of the existing one?)


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 5:59 am 
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peterb1 wrote:
Hi guys,
I have been building a similar project and you may be able to help me with some problems I am having.
I am using the Define XL case to support a 10 hdd raid 6 array for a home server.
I am using Amahi.

My main problem is overheating in the lower hdd chamber.
Dont have exact temps but hot enough to crash the array.

I have added a 14cm fan to the front of the lower hdd chamber
I am going to upgrade the fans to Ty-140's

Is there anything I should do re the orientation of the PSU (seasonic 600)?
Should I remove the panel above the PSU to allow more airflow into the main chamber?
I will mod to prevent air escape from the front fans as you suggested.
PS I dont live anywhere exotic...Im in the UK so its not ambient temps, lol

Thanks in anticipation for any thoughts / advice based on your experiences


Are you certain that it's temps that are causing the array to crash?

I would probably try to direct the flow of air without opening up the main chamber to the lower one first... with a 140mm fan I'm definitely getting enough airflow to keep the drives cool - though I didn't check to see how they went before adding in the foam around the sides. Opening up the top chamber could do several things depending on how your fans are set up there... if there's negative pressure up there it might help but if there's positive pressure it will probably have the reverse effect by causing more pressure in the area that the lower fan is blowing into.

I don't know anything about that specific model of PSU but I have mine oriented so that the air intake is facing downwards, towards the air filter at the bottom of the case.


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 6:02 am 
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Any thoughts on my overheating problem guys?


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 6:02 am 
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Posts: 89
Location: Australia
Pierre wrote:
Regarding soundproofing, if you're in the market for a ready-made solution, my favorite one is Cooltec (395) Universal Kit (link with babelfish translation from German)...

For a thinner solution, I would go with Acoustipack 7mm OEM material, if I wanted to keep the inside of the case - where there is no much room for thicker soundproofing material - as "classy" as possible while maintaining effectiveness...

At some points in my current case I have applied 2mm adhesive tar sheets with mediocre Spire foam...

My issue with industrial solutions is that their foam tends to be quite thick, 16mm usually which can be restricting...
...what kind of material are you talking about specifically and how are you going to apply it? (on top of the existing one?)


Acoustipack doesn't seem to be available here... the stuff I'm looking at is apparently 1.5mm of thick tar-like sound deadening material, available in an adhesive sheet. I'm wondering whether it's not a bad idea to layer a couple of sheets of that under some of the existing foam I've got... or just to not worry about the lighter foam at all since there aren't many (any?) audible high frequency noises coming from the case. I'm going to check the material out in person in the next week or two to see whether it's worth buying... That Acoustipack does look alright, though - so you find that it works well in terms of sound deadening? How about for vibrations? I may well be able to buy some from overseas...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 7:38 am 
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Thanks
Im pretty certain they are crashing because of overheating.
The lower chamber drives get pretty hot to touch with my hand.

I have my PSU in the same arrangement, fan intake through the grille at the base.

Ill change the fans first, then see if I need to open the main chamber.
Main chamber fans are in default positions so should be negative pressure
Sound minimisation will have to come later.

Oh did you leave the small door over the fans at the front or remove it?


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2011 9:09 pm 
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peterb1 wrote:
Thanks
Im pretty certain they are crashing because of overheating.
The lower chamber drives get pretty hot to touch with my hand.

I have my PSU in the same arrangement, fan intake through the grille at the base.

Ill change the fans first, then see if I need to open the main chamber.
Main chamber fans are in default positions so should be negative pressure
Sound minimisation will have to come later.

Oh did you leave the small door over the fans at the front or remove it?


By the small door do you mean the front case door or the air filter door? Both are still in place.. with the amount of dust on the floor in here an air filter is basically a must - I've had to clean this one twice already and we've only had the chassis, what, a month? :S


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2011 11:49 pm 
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peterb1 wrote:
Thanks
Im pretty certain they are crashing because of overheating.
The lower chamber drives get pretty hot to touch with my hand.

I have my PSU in the same arrangement, fan intake through the grille at the base.

Ill change the fans first, then see if I need to open the main chamber.
Main chamber fans are in default positions so should be negative pressure
Sound minimisation will have to come later.

Oh did you leave the small door over the fans at the front or remove it?


Actually, one other thing I did that I haven't mentioned is block the holes in the rear of the case that run the height of the case and allow air that flows along behind the motherboard to escape... My theory is that reducing airflow out this way will encourage the airflow to run straight over the second bank of hard drives rather than getting lost out the side and running behind the motherboard. Photos to come...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 2:20 am 
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Yes I meant the door covering the fan compartment rather than the main door.

I did some monitoring and at idle the second row of drives in the lower compartment was hitting 40-45C.
The others were fine (30C).
The drives are a mix of samsung 1.5TB drives, F2 and F3s
I noticed that the new F3s appeared to be running a bit hotter than the older F2s in general and switched the F2s to the second row of drives.

So far this has been positive. They are running a bit warmer than the other drives but only hitting a max of 30C at idle.
Ill put the new fans in as well and then start cranking down the voltages to quieten everything down.

Interested in what you did with the vents at the back....
And thankyou for your thoughts. Much appreciated


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 1:50 am 
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Posts: 127
Location: Greece
peterb1 wrote:
Yes I meant the door covering the fan compartment rather than the main door.

I did some monitoring and at idle the second row of drives in the lower compartment was hitting 40-45C.
The others were fine (30C).
The drives are a mix of samsung 1.5TB drives, F2 and F3s
I noticed that the new F3s appeared to be running a bit hotter than the older F2s in general and switched the F2s to the second row of drives.

So far this has been positive. They are running a bit warmer than the other drives but only hitting a max of 30C at idle.
Ill put the new fans in as well and then start cranking down the voltages to quieten everything down.

Interested in what you did with the vents at the back....
And thankyou for your thoughts. Much appreciated

The second row of drives seems to be suffering a bit there; it's quite a difference, 10-15C at idle for drives right next to each other...
But you say you switched the cooler drives to the second row and that 10-15 degrees Celcius difference between the first and second row disappeared? Just like that, without doing anything else? And now the second row HDDs reach a MAXimum temp of 30C, still running hotter than the others, while before this was the idle temp of the first row HDDs? So what's their temperature now?
It sounds quite strange really...

I suppose the plastic door separating the lower HDD chamber from the PSU chamber is not being used, right?


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 9:39 pm 
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A couple more minor foam additions to the lower compartment in an attempt to guide the air a bit more and reduce the amount of dead space:

Image

Image

Quick pics on the workbench rather than in the studio, hence they're not as good quality :(

Doing this has made an appreciable difference in the amount of air flowing out the holes above the PSU (well, it would have to since there's nowhere else for it to go)... I figure it should help reduce the amount of hot air flowing into the PSU as the only place the PSU can draw air from now is from the outside of the case... rather than drawing partially from the outside and partially from the hot air that has blown over the two ranks of HDDs.

The white foam piece is just to reduce the amount of space that air has to sit in... I'd like for the airflow to have a direct path between the intake and exhaust openings... not so much for this time of year but I hope it helps in summer. Less dead spots has to make the fans more effective which means lower rpms which means less noise, right? :p


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2011 3:43 am 
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So after doing a little testing... turning all of the fans in the case off makes almost no discernible difference to the sound level - leaving me with vibrations from the HDDs making the humming that I can hear.

Putting one's palm on the panels you can feel vibration on the top/bottom and sides - not very strong but definitely there. Taking the sides off there's vibrations in the top and bottom panels (fairly obvious since they're the same panels as with the doors on) and the panel dividing the top and bottom sections internally - the cage that holds the 5 1/4" slots doesn't have ANY vibrations that I can feel, despite there being 4x HDDs in the adapter in there.

The best mass loading acoustic stuff available locally appears to be a butyl-based stuff that's branded as Response. I got one pack to test and applied it on mostly any panel that vibrated:

Material:

Image

Several layers beneath the lower HDDs, with the foam in the above post on top:

Image

Same above:

Image

And several layers in the middle section:

Image

Up and down the front:

Image

as well as a couple of layers in the underside of the top panel.

...and then I ran out. Looks like 900mm x 360mm doesn't go all that far in a case this size... at least not when you're putting on a couple of layers at once. I avoided putting any on the side panels as I thought it would make more difference closer to the source... that and I knew I'd run out really quickly if I tried to cover these huge side panels.

Nutshell: It has made a difference.

I can still hear the hum but it has been reduced in volume by a noticeable amount - the panel vibrations on the outside have reduced as well.

From here... more of the same, I suppose - add in more layers and possibly some on the sides unless there's a better suggestion?


Still waiting on the RAID card and more HDDs... :S


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2011 9:05 am 
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Location: Gefle, Sweden
Maybe try loosening the scews that fasten the harddrives to their slides, tightened screws them can reduce the effectiveness of the grommets.

No 7200 RPM drives involved so far I guess/hope?


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2011 11:43 pm 
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Posts: 127
Location: Greece
Jim G wrote:
The best mass loading acoustic stuff available locally appears to be a butyl-based stuff that's branded as Response. I got one pack to test and applied it on mostly any panel that vibrated:

Material:

Image

Several layers beneath the lower HDDs, with the foam in the above post on top:

Image

Same above:

Image

Never come across this stuff in relevant shops here...
I'm glad it works, but its color does not quite fit the case...I don't know if these are available at where you live but in my present case I have used the following 2mm hard tar sheets - they come with a decent adhesive (strong enough to keep it in place, not ultra strong to forbid removal)...
Image

The Cooltek stuff I'm using has that same tar-based back (but softer) along with a honeycomb structure for more effective sound absorption
Image

if you do put this stuff on the side panels, you could also add some foam on top of them to get anti-vibration and sound absorbtion results...don't know if it would stick on top of that shiny surface though...maybe it would be better to get some ready made package for the side panels, like the 3-layer Acoustipack, or Fractal-Design's own sound insulation material or some other available in your country...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2011 11:50 pm 
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Posts: 89
Location: Australia
mkk wrote:
Maybe try loosening the scews that fasten the harddrives to their slides, tightened screws them can reduce the effectiveness of the grommets.

No 7200 RPM drives involved so far I guess/hope?


Hm, I might try loosening the screws a little - something I hadn't thought of.

There's only one 7200RPM drive and it's not a good one in terms of creating noise - a vibrating old Caviar Black. I did have a pair of SSDs that were going into this thing but they got used elsewhere and I have to wait until our next order before I get some more... so I suppose I'm attempting to quieten the case for the worst case scenario here - the 5400RPM WD green drives are so, so much quieter and that's all that will be in there shortly...


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2011 11:56 pm 
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Location: Australia
Pierre wrote:
Never come across this stuff in relevant shops here...
I'm glad it works, but its color does not quite fit the case...I don't know if these are available at where you live but in my present case I have used the following 2mm hard tar sheets - they come with a decent adhesive (strong enough to keep it in place, not ultra strong to forbid removal)...
Image

The Cooltek stuff I'm using has that same tar-based back (but softer) along with a honeycomb structure for more effective sound absorption
Image

if you do put this stuff on the side panels, you could also add some foam on top of them to get anti-vibration and sound absorbtion results...don't know if it would stick on top of that shiny surface though...maybe it would be better to get some ready made package for the side panels, like the 3-layer Acoustipack, or Fractal-Design's own sound insulation material or some other available in your country...


The aesthetic is a bit wrong, I'll agree - the same people that make the butyl matting stuff that I've already used make a similar product which is the matting with 3mm of black acoustic foam on top, which is what I'm intending on using as the last layer on top of what I've already put on. Another couple of layers of the current material and then a layer of the butyl+foam will bring the added material on the base of the case to be flush with the lower lip of the holes in the HDD cage, which is where the current foam is sitting... which would be ideal to me and look a whole lot nicer being black! Next time I'm in town I'm going to pick up some more sound deadening material and see how that goes.

I think we're thinking along the same lines here - just with different products available... I'm more concerned about the vibrations at the moment, though, which as far as I understand are better dealt with by mass-loading rather than adding the lighter acoustic foam - there aren't many (or any, really) higher frequency noises coming from the case that I can hear.

We are getting a spare case door sent to us - we had another Fractal Design case get damaged in transit and it needs a new door (yay for shipping insurance) so I will get a chance to peel off the OEM side material and attempt to restick it elsewhere in this case... will be interested to see how that goes!

I am envious of the solid black colour of the material you posted photos of, though... would make the case look a whole lot nicer in its current half-done state!


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 Post subject: Re: Server "Tycho" - Fractal Design Define XL w/15 HDDs.
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 1:57 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 3:55 am
Posts: 127
Location: Greece
Quote:
The aesthetic is a bit wrong, I'll agree - the same people that make the butyl matting stuff that I've already used make a similar product which is the matting with 3mm of black acoustic foam on top, which is what I'm intending on using as the last layer on top of what I've already put on. Another couple of layers of the current material and then a layer of the butyl+foam will bring the added material on the base of the case to be flush with the lower lip of the holes in the HDD cage, which is where the current foam is sitting... which would be ideal to me and look a whole lot nicer being black! Next time I'm in town I'm going to pick up some more sound deadening material and see how that goes.

What's the thickness of that mass loading material you have there? I'm asking cause you mentioned many laying multiple sheets of it on the case...
Yes with a black foam top it will look great and uniform...and it will of course be more efficient...

Quote:
I think we're thinking along the same lines here - just with different products available... I'm more concerned about the vibrations at the moment, though, which as far as I understand are better dealt with by mass-loading rather than adding the lighter acoustic foam - there aren't many (or any, really) higher frequency noises coming from the case that I can hear.

Yes, we are talking about the same thing..the reason I mentioned the other products, without being explanative is to account for two different approaches to mass loading...
- The acoustipack product has the heavier tar sheet in the middle of its 3 layer sound insulating material among the two foam layers...this adds weight while at the same time supposedly allowing better absorption of vibrations, by preventing the heavier, harder materials, e.g. the cases side panel surface and the tar sheet, from "interacting", so that the small movements of the tar sheet caused by vibrations are not transmitted to the outter metal surface...i.e. the foam layer between the panel and the tar sheet acts like a "buffer" of some sort, while the whole package still adds the extra weight needed to prevent vibrations

- The other product approach, most common to other sound insulation packages, is exactly to have the heavier materials contact each to produce a better "binding" effect, thus reducing the vibrations more effectively...it may also be regarded safer to have the heavier materials "glued" together to support the weight of the added material instead of having the tar sheet further away from the contacing surface and laying on the foam base...don't know if this actually stands, i.e. that it could peel off easier...at least it sounds more logical for the side panels or the top of the case, instead of the bottom, where this would make no difference

Quote:
I am envious of the solid black colour of the material you posted photos of, though... would make the case look a whole lot nicer in its current half-done state

It's better to have that in areas where you won't be adding foam on top...I've also used it to fashion custom "Moduvents"...
the downside is that if the surface is not absolutely flat it won't stick properly, and there also is less margin for error when cutting pieces to apply to the case...


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