View of the outside, case rear. The large exhaust blower fan uses the perforated holes of the case as a fan guard as well as screw holes for mounting. Didn't need the fan guard feature & also made an opening (top right) for the Zalman fan controller wire.
Angled the fan to clear the "custom air duct" below. That's the SCSI card w/ CD & HD cables. Also shown at the top is the rear USB ports that came w/ the Gigabyte 8IHXP mobd. btw..really love the quality of that GB board so I got the same for the smaller puter. The chipset HS (gold in color) is shown after removing it's fan. Explained later is the funny looking vid card HS.
Visible at the bottom is how I covered up the unused half of the PSU wire cutout. Leaving it open would have screwed up the nice PSU air flow. Used some aluminum from the old case.
Everything in place. On the left r the Plextor SCSI CD players, CD writer & foam block from the acoustic pack.
Stop laughing! It really works!
Directing air onto the vid card (via that hacked up air duct) didn't cool the Matrox Parhelia enough for use w/o it's fan. Not wanting to risk removing the oem HS & installing a more efficient one, I pulled out one of my many old HS's that came from discarded PSUs. I found one that fit PERFECTLY. It was the exact width & pressure fit onto the vid card HS with just a firm push. I bent the top down a tad to catch some air.
This tape was applied to the plate which holds the PSU to the outside of the case...btw...this feature of the 2 LL cases is one of those little quality things that u don't realize u get when u pay the top bucks for the LL's. It allows easy placement of the PSU. I had to think hard before spending the $ for these units. After working w/ them however, it was money well spent. If I amortize their cost over the length of time I'll have them (5 or more yrs probably) they're a fair price.
Since I didn't want to repeat the mistake of remounting the PSU as I did w/ the first puter, I elected to just slide some of that rubber tape between the fan & shell. The fan was mounted w/ plastic grommets instead of metal screws anyway. This Zalman PSU only has one fan ...had to look a while to find a older PSU w/ an AUX connection & one fan. 2 fans would have created more noise w/o improving air flow.
Used some MELAMINE to stuff in the spaces around the floppy.
Hot glued the foam in place.
The black foam blocks came w/ the AcoustiPack.
Some wire management shots.
The 2 gray wires r the front USB ports. Had to make a small notch (lower center) on the mobd backing plate ridge.
In addition to the AcoustiPack, from Mc-C I got some 5692T498, FLAT SOUND ABSORBING FOAM, ADHESIVE BACK, SKINNED SURFACE, 1" THK, 54"W, 1'L.
The AcoustiPack runs out pretty quickly so this stuff came in handy.
Applied some to the left side of the PSU.
The left side panel with it's oem padding & some additional AcoustiPack applied on top.
The more noise-critical panel was the right one. It faced the inside components as well as where I sat in relation to the puter. I used both the thinner & thicker AcoustiPack material. Notice how the added damping goes further along the edge than the oem stuff. I think this made a big difference on both panels. The oem damping left a gap around the entire panel which would have allowed noise to escape. The additional material did make replacing the panels a tad more difficult.
By the time I got to the rear air intake muffler, I was running out of time & patience. Had I more of both, I would have used wood instead of the foam board.... no diff in noise control but it would have looked prettier.
Fund this shelf liner at Home Depot...sure looked like aluminum.
A fan view of the inside showing the flap of thin AcoustiPack material used as a noise baffle.
Looking from the outside towards the baffle.
My PSU exhaust muffler was a Fan Duct - 120mm (DUCT120) = $4.99 from Performance-PCs.com. It conveniently pressure fit onto the small pegs surrounding the PSU fan.
I hot glued some MELAMINE as noise baffles inside the fan duct. I shouldn't have bothered. The PSU fan seems to stay at it's lowest rpm because of the good intake air flow. I can't hear it running, even w/ my ear next to it. The duct was needed however. It directs the warm exhausted air away from the intake above it.
A final shot before closing it up.
After placing the online puter in it's spot (to the left) I determined that noise was bouncing off the bare wall & wood surfaces surrounding it. I hot glued MELAMINE on those surfaces. I was pleasantly surprised when it resulted in a measurable (to my ears) noise decrease. Since the graphic system was more exposed I used the better stuff to accomplished the same thing for it. That's the thin AcoustiPack damping on the left & the Mc-C stuff on the top & rear
Was it all worth it? .....YES!...I'm happy with the results. Both puters r VERY quiet. Although the graphic one has more fans, it has the same noise level as the smaller one.
Let's see....how can I give u folks an idea of the resulting noise....
When we got my wife's little DELL (P4-1.4GHz, only used for email & WORD), I was impressed at how quiet it was. I could hardly hear it. Standing at the opposite end of the room, it's inaudible. These LL's are as quiet. It's only when both r on that they become audible across the room.
The noise I hear when I'm at my desk is a faint pleasant hollow WHOOSHING sound. Maybe a combination of WHOOSH & HUM. I couldn't be happier. They aren't audible at all when listening to CDs on my open-air headset.
Comments or questions welcomed.