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 Post subject: Shameless plagiarism : SPCR Model One
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 9:35 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 6:16 am
Posts: 146
Location: Belgium
Hi everyone !

I've been obsessed with quiet computing for some time now, but I'm willing to take it one step further today.

Here is my build :

* Lian Li PC6070B+ (blower removed, all three 8mm Adda fans @5V)
* Zalman ZM460-APS
* AMD Athlon X2 4600+ (Toledo E6) - Zalman 9500 @ 5V
* X1900XT / Zalman VF900Cu @5V
* Samsung SP2054C inside a SmartDrive 2002C, on foam at the bottom of the case
* 2x Samsung HD501LJ inside Vantec Nexstars (yeah, that REALLY sucks)

I've been thinking for a while about moving towards an Antec Solo-based config, with better coolers and fans (namely, Noctua, Nexus and Thermalright). The Corsair HX520W was tempting as well :)

I had read some time ago about SPCR-designed systems, and found them very interesting. I was surprised when I read the article again to realize that my dream build was very close to SPCR's Model One and basically wondered about all these fanless parts :

With MY parts (plus the HX520W), is it doable to remove the fans from the CPU and the GPU, install an Ultra120 and an HR-03, put an undervolted Noctua at the back, two undervolted Nexus at the front (I feel these three suspended disks and my gfx card will need some air) and expect my chips to stay within safe temperatures ?

Thanks a lot !


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 2:43 pm 
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its dependant on what you feel is a "safe" temperature.

it'll get a little warm in there without fans on the heatsinks for the CPU/GPU, but its possible for it to run fanless in that sense.

personally i would rather play it safe because when running fanless, although the ultra 120 will still outperform all others, its going to continue to make more heat, and the exhaust fan wont be able to keep up. i have a 7v NMB fan as my exhaust fan, i think its running around 1200rpm silently, and running a ninja fanless just raises all the temps of my system, the exhaust fan can't keep up.

with a fan on my ninja, temps are manageable, but i need to find a new way to cool my gfx card because its fanless, but poorly fanless, the heatsink gets very hot and i can't seem to find a way to give it direct airflow yet.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 3:21 pm 
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Location: Belgium
I see what you mean. I don't want my PSU (which would be the only thermo-regulated fan of my system) to absorb all the excess heat. I'd rather put quiet fans on my coolers than make my PSU work "overtime".

That was the point of my thread actually, I'm not a power-dissipation expert, and I'm not sure about what the coolers I was talking about can do for my system. I do know that both my CPU and GPU generate quite a lot of heat, but to what extent... ? I'm not sure what Thermalright coolers can do either...

EDIT : I think I'll give my idea a try, and play it like I first mentioned it on this thread, then carefully monitor my temperatures. If things go wrong (like my PSU running full speed all the time or the chips nearly frying), I'll just add undervolted fans to my CPU and GPU coolers.

Any additionnal advice, anyone ? :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 7:16 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2005 4:21 pm
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Location: NEW YORK WORD AND STUFF YEAH OK
yeah that big scythe ninja thing would be good for that.

i have a 4200 chip. the cpu doesnt need that much cooling, pretty good chip.

im a fan of two fans in front, 1 in rear, one psu like the corsair 540 (have the 620, same thing until after 540 volts).

always better incomming air than outgoing air.

Zalman's vga cooler is much more quiet than most things. however, it will not be as silent as you may want. zalman's cpu and vga coolers are very powerful though for cooling in general.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 7:51 pm 
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Location: Northern New Jersey
its not so much that the fans will ramp up, but an undervolted exhaust fan [unless ducted] wont be able to help cool the heatsink easily because its pulling air from all directions.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 12:18 am 
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One thing that also bothers me is that my CPU dissipates up to 110W :( One of the hottest, apparently :(


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 11:24 am 
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I'm seriously thinking about getting a Ninja and ducting it to my exhaust Noctua... But won't it interfere with the ability of my PSU (Corsair HX520) to get some air from the case? As one can see in this installation guide, this duct doesn't leave much space for the PSU bottom fan... :(

EDIT : In order to get the PSU a tiny bit of fresh air, would it help to use a duct to the front of the case, even though the rear of this PSU is completely sealed, or would it be useless ?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 12:03 pm 
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Location: UK
Torajirou wrote:
One thing that also bothers me is that my CPU dissipates up to 110W :( One of the hottest, apparently :(


look in your BIOS, see if you can reduce CPU voltage. this reduces heat.

with your layout, you really shouldn't have got a bottom-fan psu. a duct to the front of the case should help a little, as long as it leaves 1cm or so between the psu fan and the duct.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 12:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 6:16 am
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Location: Belgium
Thanks for your help !

jaganath wrote:
Torajirou wrote:
One thing that also bothers me is that my CPU dissipates up to 110W :( One of the hottest, apparently :(


look in your BIOS, see if you can reduce CPU voltage. this reduces heat.


That's one of this motherboard's problems : voltage by default is 1.39V instead of the regular 1.35V. This was pointed out by an earlier SPCR review. In order to bring it back to the standard value, you have to disable C'nQ... Tough dilemma, if you ask me :(

jaganath wrote:
with your layout, you really shouldn't have got a bottom-fan psu.


Yeah, I'm starting to realise that... I think I got carried away a bit by the awesomeness of this PSU ^^ And I was so excited about quieting down my system even more, that I ordered my components too quickly. Maybe I could just aim at a more "standard" configuration and forget about my fanless CPU and GPU (though I find the idea very seducing :D)

jaganath wrote:
a duct to the front of the case should help a little, as long as it leaves 1cm or so between the psu fan and the duct.


This won't be possible with the Ninja installed, I guess. I was talking about the (un)usefulness of a duct from the (sealed) rear of the PSU to the case front.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:12 pm 
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Quote:
I'm seriously thinking about getting a Ninja and ducting it to my exhaust Noctua...

Noctua's aren't very suited for CPU-cooling. They don't make much pressure (because of the tiny fins) and don't get much air through the fins.
You should get yourself a Nexus if you want to use it as a semi-CPU-fan. I think that one is more suited. And still vèry quiet.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:20 pm 
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I would say that without a duct the psu will quickly ramp up. I experienced this problem even though I used a front fan psu.
A duct worked well for the cpu & psu but not for the graphics card (the cpu monopolised the exhaust). With a top facing fan psu it was even worse as adding a duct created turbulance noise.
I think the best solution is to put the psu in the bottom (antec p180 / lian li 1000).

I wouldn`t worry so much about the heatsink fans though. In my dumped case at least they are drawn out by the intake & exhaust fans. And still, the sum of their noise is less loud then a soft mounted, 2,5 hard drive sandwiched between 2 incactive ones. This is just from my experience, but it makes me think it`s better focusing on other parts first if you seek silence.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:35 pm 
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ntavlas wrote:
I would say that without a duct the psu will quickly ramp up. I experienced this problem even though I used a front fan psu.


That's what I feared...

ntavlas wrote:
A duct worked well for the cpu & psu but not for the graphics card (the cpu monopolised the exhaust).


I'll see what the HR-03 and two intake fans can do about the GPU...

Quote:
With a top facing fan psu it was even worse as adding a duct created turbulance noise.


I was indeed afraid of turbulence because of the vicinity of the PSU fan and a CPU/exhaust fan air duct...

ntavlas wrote:
I think the best solution is to put the psu in the bottom (antec p180 / lian li 1000).


That's unfortunately out of the question, since I've already ordered my Solo... Anyway, I litteraly fell in love with this case ^^

Quote:
I wouldn`t worry so much about the heatsink fans though. In my dumped case at least they are drawn out by the intake & exhaust fans. And still, the sum of their noise is less loud then a soft mounted, 2,5 hard drive sandwiched between 2 incactive ones. This is just from my experience, but it makes me think it`s better focusing on other parts first if you seek silence.


Yeah, I think you're definitely right. Anyway, I'll give my project a try, and see what SpeedFan says about my temps. If it gets too hot, I'll just add two silent fans on my heatsinks, and I probably won't notice the difference. As I was saying, I'm just very seduced by the idea of cooling the TDP-Monster that I own with just three case fans (and a PSU). But that definitely sounds too dangerous and, because of the PSU fan ramping up, even much noisier :(


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2007 7:56 am 
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Location: Greece
"ll see what the HR-03 and two intake fans can do about the GPU..."

Sounds good, worth trying.

"That's unfortunately out of the question, since I've already ordered my Solo... Anyway, I litteraly fell in love with this case "

There`s no doubt it is a very good case. You can try resolving any psu issues by ducting it to the front bays.

"As I was saying, I'm just very seduced by the idea of cooling the TDP-Monster that I own with just three case fans (and a PSU). "

You might want to sacrifice the psu as an exhaust (ducting it to the front) and make a positive pressure layout, it can help when using a passive heatsink.
It is something worth trying. Others have achieved it so we know it is possible as long as you take care of the possible issues. Best of luck.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 5:37 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 6:16 am
Posts: 146
Location: Belgium
System up and running !

Antec Solo (fan grills removed)
AcoustiPack Deluxe v2
Intake : 2 x Nexus Real Silent 92mm @ 5V
Exhaust : Noctua NF-S12 800
Corsair HX520W
Asus A8N32SLI-Deluxe
4x1GB DDR MDT CL2.5
AMD Socket 939 4600+ / Scythe Ninja Plus Rev.B (fanless)
ATi X1900XT / Thermarlright HR-03 Rev.A (fanless)
Samsung SP2504C
2 x Samsung HD501LJ

Subjectively, it's certainly not silent, but it sure is quiet. Apparently, the main noise source is the two intake fans. The three suspended HDDs are inaudible. GPU idles around 40°C, and CPU around a surprisingly low 20°C ! :)

I have to admit that I'm very proud of my first real attempt at cable management, it all looks nice and tidy :)

I'll be doing some load tests, and I'll post some pics in the gallery forum as soon as I find a friend who has a camera and is available ;)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 7:20 am 
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Location: Vancouver Wa USA
Torajirou,

How cold is the room that you are running this in? Is your room cooler than 20C?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2007 7:40 am 
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Location: Belgium
Yeah, I haven't turned the heating back on yet. Trying to save some money before real winter kicks in ^^ It should be about 17-18°C. I'm not cold easily ;)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2007 5:25 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 6:16 am
Posts: 146
Location: Belgium
Slight improvement in noise after realising that the exhaust fan was the major culprit :

* Installed the U.L.N.A. on the exhaust fan
* Installed a Noctua NF-S12 800 (with U.L.N.A too) on the Ninja

No major change in idle temps.

It's been said thousands of times, but it's worth repeating it : more fans with lower RPMs really make a difference!


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