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 Post subject: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 6:14 am 
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Hello :),

I bought this PC when I was in holidays (same CPU but a HD5770 at the time) : http://www.materiel.net/ordinateur/mate ... 71508.html

- READ underlined words + see links if in a hurry -
I really like games with detailed graphics (as long as the gameplay is good as well :mrgreen: ) but as I began my third year in university I realised I couldn't play anymore and that a graphic card like this was stupid... Plus the CPU makes an horrible noise :(. So I'm progressively going to a totally silent computer and need you to help me sort it out because I don't know much about those specific computers.
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My computer is composed of : Antec NSK4482B for the box which is quite similar as this one : viewtopic.php?f=14&t=62128
I'd like to buy smart, a fanless PSU will always be useful, I thought of this one : http://www.materiel.net/alimentation-po ... 60147.html or this one : http://www.materiel.net/alimentation-po ... 71342.html, it has more depth than the one in my computer (Antec Earthwatts 380 Green) but if it's only the depth it should fit without troubles right :s ? If I'm correct it's 150 x 160 x 86 mm vs 150 x 140 x 86 mm...
I'd like to buy a GPU able to decode Full HD + DTS 5.1 Mkv : I'm hesitating between : http://www.materiel.net/carte-graphique ... 70635.html and http://www.materiel.net/carte-graphique ... 61682.html

Finally I will replace the original CPU fan by : http://www.materiel.net/radiateur-pour- ... 52698.html .
I believe (not sure) that the Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition has a TDP of 125W this will be hard to dissipate :(...
The whole system will be cooled by a 200mm fan + 120mm fan CPU cooler (with copper) and that's all. So I'm quite worried for the PSU although it's isolated... I wonder what the noise in dbA would be then.

Thank you for your help, keep in mind that it is not only my music PC but also my Studying-PC as well :( !!


(In the future I'll buy a 35W Ivy bridge CPU with passive cooling (a big CPU cooler like on the other thread), integrated GPU, my soundcard, fanless PSU, probably 160GB SSD (if it doesn't cost as much as 1€/1GB) and absolutely no fan.)


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:21 am 
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Bienvenue !

Welcome to SPCR !!!

For the PSU, choose the Seasonic : it's more modern than the nightjar and has better efficency.
For the CPU heatsink, why not... the problem is this CPU is a power house... I think you should start by reducing the speed of your fans (case fans and CPU fan) before anything else (it's free and can have a big impact). If that doesn't help and/or your temps are too high, get recommended fans (Nexus or Scythe, see model references in the recommended section), and lower their speeds. Lastly, if that doesn't help, change the heatsink (you'll still need the new fans no matter what).
For the GPU, if you go passive, find the lowest power GPU, otherwise you might have to use the front 80mm fan (not great). Another possibility if you want to keep your current GPU is to fit it with an aftermarket cooler...

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HTPC/folder/Storage : Silverstone|E5300 with Samurai-Z|2Go RAM|GTX460@800|2x1To WD EARS|Intel X25M G2 80Go

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:23 am 
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Hi and Welcome to SPCR.

Video card: Since you are concerned with HTPC video, here's an article at Tom's Hardware on testing for video cards as well as one at Anandtech. While HQV is a subjective test, the Nvidia 210 performs poorly vs the others.

PSU: Consider the Seasonic x-560 instead. It costs less, and will be silent with your power use. I'd stay away from lower efficiency fanless products like that Silverstone. Too much heat to dissipate.

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1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:45 am 
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Stick to recomended heatsinks without snap in mounting. Once you find effiecient cooling at lower fan speeds you will start to hear HDD noise. To reduce HDD noise consider a vibration reducing 3,5 to 5,25 adaptor and a small SSD for the OS and programs, 64GB is all you need if you move your user folders to the HDD.
EDIT: Can you unvervolt your CPU in bios? This might help you get better thermals and drop fan speeds further.

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:19 am 
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Thank you all :D !

@markanini
Hmm sorry but to me you are proposing me a drastical solution, I forgot to say I don't want to buy the equivalent of a new PC that is to say not more than 200€ would be good :P ! I'll definitely try undervolting my CPU, gosh this is going to be a time-wasting and hard operation :| ...

@CA_Steve
I'm sorry I cannot understand your article :(, I don't intend to play at all so I just want it to be discrete, decode 1080p and be as cheap as possible. I thought the Saphire one would be able to complete that task.
I'm truly hesitating with the PSU, I'm actually running with a 380W PSU, so with 70W less are you sure the PSU would run without its fan :? ?
Just being curious, what if it's 30°C ambient, will the fan run then ?

@frenchie
No, I'm not keeping my Graphic Card lol :lol: , as for the power it is apparently 30W for both cards (the 2 discrete one I proposed)


And I was stupid it's a 120mm fan not a 200mm fan :roll: ...
So my system will be cooled with 2 * 120mm.
I couldn't seperate the front fan (by front you mean the case fan at the rear right ?) from the PSU fan but it makes more noise than I thought. So you're telling me this one is replacable ?

To sum it up I have to :
- Undervolt the CPU
- Change the case fan ? (Do you have any model to propose ? French commercial websites if possible :p)
- Buy a discrete GPU is ok, the ASUS one, the sapphire or a more powerful one for 1080p ?
- Buy Seasonic 560W (if it can run without fan at least when CPU is not at 100%...)


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:26 am 
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Ohh sorry I forgot to say : I need Molex for my soundcard and I'm keeping my 2 HDD because they are almost inaudible, they are 1TB WD Caviar Green I think.
Plus If I wanted an SSD it would be 160 GB because I'd want to store my music as well :mrgreen: .


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 6:21 pm 
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ThibWay wrote:
@CA_Steve
I'm sorry I cannot understand your article :(, I don't intend to play at all so I just want it to be discrete, decode 1080p and be as cheap as possible. I thought the Saphire one would be able to complete that task.
I'm truly hesitating with the PSU, I'm actually running with a 380W PSU, so with 70W less are you sure the PSU would run without its fan :? ?
Just being curious, what if it's 30°C ambient, will the fan run then ?


Short answer: Don't get either of those cards for decoding your 1080p MKVs. Go with the 6450..

PSU: Your system only uses ~150-175W at load. That's below the fan start up point. Here's an X-560 review. Look at the hot box table. As Jonnyguru says:

"Ok... this has to be a first here at jonnyGURU.com. Not only does this unit not care about the hot box, this unit gave me the exact same voltage readings as it did cold for almost every single test. Seriously, I can't remember the last time this happened."

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1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:47 pm 
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If you'd want to decode 1080i in highest quality (MadVR+CUVID)the suggestion is a GTX550ti. Otherwise you could follow CA_Steve's suggestion. 1TB WD GP should indeed be super quiet, no need to worry about the storage then. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:10 am 
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Thank you again, everything's almost solved :mrgreen:

I won’t actually change the PSU unless I think there’s too much noise, I believe the main noise was coming from : bad 120mm, CPU heatskink and GPU (oh dear :P). But if I have to I'll take the hybrid Seasonic 560W ^^.
I couldn’t separate 120mm case fan from PSU but apparently the noisiest was the case fan.

I finally bought the GPU and the NHD-14, I didn't buy Noctua NF-F12 case fan because 2 fans are furnished with NHD-14 which are upgrades from NF-F12 and F14 models.

I managed removing the heatsink but while I removed the CPU and HS the wrong way my father tried to plug the CPU back in and a few of the pins got a little biased (not parallel anymore :? ) but I got them as straight as I could and got the CPU back in place I hope it's going to work :oops: !!!!

EDIT4 : The width AND HEIGHT is good for NHD-14 although it will almost touch the RAM.
A photo (sorry for quality) : http://i30.fastpic.ru/big/2011/1121/03/ ... af5403.jpg As reference (if it can help in any way :lol: ) the CPU case (in white) is 4cm high.

Nobody answered for almost 2 days, as I was in a hurry I looked to see if there was better, measured and bought everything myself... If I made a bad choice you can tell me afterwards I can still return the product... I'm not sure whether the NHD-14 will fit, according to measurements there are only 5mm differences, plus I'm not sure about heat management either, how it's supposed to be organized in the PC. I'll post photos of my rig when it's done.
On the worst case I'll also have to change the CPU :? , I'd then buy a low power AMD CPU because I'm not buying a whole motherboard...


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2011 2:57 am 
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Hey, I received my graphic card but I can't use it yet because as you know I've removed the heatsink and I'm waiting for the new one :mrgreen: . It was really fast by the way, I've received 2 items in only 2 days :o .

I actually have another question : can anyone tell me or teach me how to calculate the tdp of my motherboard :shock: ?
I'd like to know the total wattage that is dissipated, so we have :
27W + 125W + Motherboard + RAM + PSU (+ HDD = 2W or so) = Total Wattage
It's so not cool that AM3 socket is abandonned, I was mad when I discovered that my motherboard is based on AM3 socket :x .


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2011 9:44 am 
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Location: Malmo, Sweden
Try this PSU calculator: http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp

BTW there are silicone grommets you can buy from Antec as spare parts which would further reduces HDD noise over the stock hard rubber ones: http://store.antec.com/Product/accessor ... 242-5.aspx You'd need to add The Sonata-III or P180 screw bag to make use of them. I know it isn't your main concern right now but since it's cheap and will make the WD GPs whisper silent no matter how low you set your fans(IME, I've use both the white one and black ones in thre different Antec cases) you might wanna consider it. Most cases don't have the ability to accept any HDD grommets much less the supperior soft silicone ones as a drop-in so consider yourself lucky!

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2011 4:36 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:34 am
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markanini wrote:
Try this PSU calculator: http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp

BTW there are silicone grommets you can buy from Antec as spare parts which would further reduces HDD noise over the stock hard rubber ones: http://store.antec.com/Product/accessor ... 242-5.aspx You'd need to add The Sonata-III or P180 screw bag to make use of them. I know it isn't your main concern right now but since it's cheap and will make the WD GPs whisper silent no matter how low you set your fans(IME, I've use both the white one and black ones in thre different Antec cases) you might wanna consider it. Most cases don't have the ability to accept any HDD grommets much less the supperior soft silicone ones as a drop-in so consider yourself lucky!


(EDITED 26/11/2011)

Thanks that is indeed a good idea :wink: , I couldn't find it in french however, when I was looking "silicone disque dur (means HDD)" I only got silicone cases for HDD.
I will wait a bit for silicone grommets although it's very cheap I spent quite a lot with this operation :(, well maybe I'll take those if I have to buy screws.
If I want to change the computer again I'll find deals like those : http://www.materiel.net/pack-composants ... 71000.html
Well this is not really a deal because the CPU is approx 104€, the motherboard 65€ and RAM cost about 20€ (not sure) but the idea is here.

I don't think undervolting the CPU is a good thing, in holidays, when I'll by playing, the CPU, according to Ohm's Law, will draw more current and it will probably shorten the CPU's life. But I do admit 125W for a CPU is ridiculous :(...


Last edited by ThibWay on Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:31 am 
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Hey :D !

Everything's working, I had a lot lot of troubles HDD troubles (primary and boot), RAM misplaced :lol: , but it's now all in place I just have to cut the case fan.

Still some concerns though :

1) I can touch my graphis card but only for a few seconds. I tried stressing it a bit, it can read lossless x264 1080p mkv :mrgreen: .
(( And I think I resolved the sound clicks when playing 5.1 lossless DTS, I believe it was due to driver having a too slow response time, I took very recent unified drivers (= unofficial) instead. ))

2) I have to plug 2 things to my soundcard, a Molex and another plug of a certain form, there are 2 with the same form one where it's written "HD Audio" the other one "AC97", on other forums they say "HD Audio" is better for software and makes panels work independantly, mine is working but they say I should go in the BIOS and tell my computer to use it or it might damage the device O_o, I've never seen that in the BIOS, I'll check later :| .

3) I can't believe that the heatsink is barely warm O__o, even the copper on the base is barely warm ! It is settled, I removed it once and the thermal compound was well spread (I thought I had a CPU problem) , I reapplied the thermal compound and settled the HS exactly the same way so normally it's functionning (and I think I'd know if HS was off of the CPU :lol: ).

4) By the way I have to check temparatures, any recommanded software before I look on the internet ? Is there an integrated software in Windows 7 for that ???!

I'll also post some photos as I said.


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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 7:12 pm 
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Your system fine unless you intend to do something demanding like A/V transcoding and production work. Undervolting is perfectly safe, the only downside is the time you spend to find the ideal value and as always YMMV. Let me know if you're still interested and I can point you to a guide. I'd suggest contacting Antec Europe customer support and they'll put you through to a representative. Here's the US spare parts site for your reference: http://store.antec.com/Category/accesso ... parts.aspx

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:01 am 
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Contact Antec, they might just send you the part for free... :)

For temps, try speedfan, it usually works.
if your GPU gets too hot, get a slow fan and use zip ties to attach it to the heatsink and your temps will go way down with almost no increase in noise

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 Post subject: Re: Reducing noise for music (Asus Xonar STX ^^)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:19 am 
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Hello,

Sorry I forgot to take a picture before putting everything back in place, I'll do it later, anyways it's a bit of a mess the PSU is not modular and I zipped the 120mm case fan... I was wondering something : i have a maximal permanent usage of 20% of the CPU, as I said it's not warm anywhere, I'm always below or = 30°C, do you think I can remove one of the fan ? Which one should I remove ? the 140 or the 120 ? IMO I should remove the 120mm fan, put the 140 one in the left section so that the air blows through the 2 copper structures. I'd then zip the 120mm in the low-right section, as I did with the bad 120mm fan (it is linked to the PSU and the PSU makes a lot more noise so I won't bother removing it).

Do you think the 140mm is enough ?- it's in Ultra Low Noise - and don't forget that the 120mm one will blow a bit air from below. [140]->[First copper][Nothing][Second Copper]

I used the wrong screws for fixing the HDD, I thought this wasn't important as long as it's stuck but it now makes more noise like CRRRCRRR but in a lower frequency.
I will have to buy the silicone grommets, 4 screws (which one I don't know...) and the PSU at the same time.

Anyways thank you for help you've done much (too much in fact :mrgreen: ), I thought I'd be done with the NHD but I will have to work on the PSU... I think I can do it all by myself no problem, I'd just like that someone confirms whether it's a good idea for the fan.


As for the sibilance (= excess of highs to me) of my sound card, I used a parametric equalizer to reduce the highs precisely, it gives very good results but I still think that compared to the MP3 player I'm missing something.
I tried explaining people but they think I'm a fool, my point is that while the quality is insane it's as if it was made only by engineers and not sound artists or such, or voluntarly left neutral for those high fidelity fanatics :? , which is why the soundcard sounds weird to me. The Cowon J3 on the other side is warm = more basses and has less highs (plus there is some little drop-off). With headphones out however the sound is more interesting to me although IEMs have too low impedance and are too sensitive... (I didn't try plugging my speakers, apparently it's not good for them :| ).
But whatever I was just saying that because if by luck you have an idea (I thought of a physic external analogic equalizer but it costs at least 150€ and I don't know if it'll be of any use and how it works), oh and I was recommanded a few op-amps but they don't actually change anything or very very little effect, it's more supposed to change the quality - that's already perfect by the way...

EDIT : I have a lot of exams so I might not answer for a few days :?


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