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 Post subject: SilentBen's P182 Build - FULLY DETAILED - Suggestions?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 8:42 am 
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Location: USA
Greetings SPCR! :-D

I am working on doing a P182 build similar to many other SPCR fans out there. Just as a quick preface, I do some gaming but I'd rather sacrifice a few FPS for a few degrees cooler, a few less watts consumed (since that is a measurement of heat anyway!), and a few less db's.

My one concern is that I live in a warmer area and we try to conserve as much energy as possible. For example, my ambient room temperature is 27C/80F @ 40%RH, and it is warmer outside! :!:

Anyway, on with my build!

    -Motherboard & CPU-
    Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS4 (I was considering a GA-EP35C-DS3R because of the DDR3 support, but most results do not justify the value of DDR3 vs DDR2. The DS4 appears to have awesome feedback on the SPCR forums too with SLi support, but I don't think I will use SLi anyway).
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 Yorkfield 2.5GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 95W Quad-Core Processor - OEM (Already Own, I wanted a quad core since the Q6XXX came out! This performs marginally better then the Q6600 and at about less 30w! 45nm FTW! The Q9450 seemed to offer more horsepower but I'm not sure about it's energy usage. I'm sure it increased!)
    CPU Heatsink: Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme CPU Cooler (Can't go wrong here! I may directly attach a Slipstream to it)
    RAM: OCZ Gold 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) (Already Own, I know it may not be the fastest or the best... but I got an excellent deal on it! 5-5-5-15 timings and still a great deal if you're not hardcore for performance!)
    Sound: Onboard. (I use an Altec Lansing 5.1 surround set perfectly fine on a Intel integrated Realtek ALC880, doubtful that it will be any better/worse!)


As more side notes, I like to reference SPCR thread # 404018, suggestions from Luminair. I think I will be doing almost all of those P182 mods.

Now that I'm done typing, the temperature has risen to 29C/84F here! :!:

I would like to place an order for everything by next Monday, April 21 if possible. I need a weekend project for this upcoming weekend! No more college for me after that, at least until masters! I also want to follow up by posting pictures of my build once it is complete.

PS - I know Newegg has some deactivated some of the links above. All links are there for reference purposes only, infact most of them are directly out of my shopping cart! Please refer to the manufacturers website for accurate specifications. You can purchase any of these items still through different retailers!

Thanks in advance your advice and time!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:03 pm 
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Looks pretty sweet. I think you will be happy with the build as it is.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:31 pm 
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I certainly hope so! The only non-sweet thing about this build is going to be final price tag when I am finished, but it still should be substantially less then my other ideas.

I originally debated about the watercooling vs aircooling vs hybrid water & peltier cooled systems.

I dropped the watercooling idea since I don't want to O.C. and cooling the radiator and pump could create noise. I also did not like the idea of a single-point-of-failure or possible leaks. By physics, water is much more effective at removing heat then air, but only given the fact that you're able to cool the heated water. This could be difficult without consuming more energy and an end result of added noise! This concept works in cars, even sometimes without fans, but I don't see my PC cruising at 55mph down a highway!

The peltier & water cooled systems had a unique idea. But, the result of a peltier is a cool side and a hot side... with the hot side having more heat to dissipate then what is input and energy use for the peltier to work anyway, making it an ineffective model. I had the CoolIT Freezone or Eliminator in mind, but, it did not answer any of my other cooling needs. Once again, a failed model for me.

Air-cooling is a beauty for PCs, especially when done effectively. I have learned from SPCR that you never had to truly sacrifice performance components for low noise and power. If a system is planned properly, I think one is capable of creating a "more efficient" computer that rivals many of the "gaming-grade" computers at a fraction of the energy usage and noise cost!

Not that any of that has to do with the above build, but they are just some of my thoughts to why I chose the compotents I did.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:39 pm 
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The Slipstreams seem to have really good reviews too, plus it's bragging rights I think to say... "I'm slipstreamed"

I also thought keeping them all at 1200 rpm verses the varying rpms will give a smoother resonant frequency if any noise comes out of them and a better airflow result.

I've noticed on my fan controller on my existing PC, if I set one identical fan to 1500 and the other to 1800rpms, it has two different "hums" if you will. Throw my power supply fan in there, now I have 3. Might just be me though.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2008 8:36 pm 
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It's Monday here in the EST timezone. I'm pretty confident in this build and I'm ready to order! I will give it until tomorrow evening, and if no one comments, I'm going to order everything as listed.

Oh, I plan on using a max of 6 slipstreams too.

    1) Stock (front) Bottom intake
    2) Stock (front) Middle intake, mounting fan to 2nd hard drive bay
    3) Top (front) 5.25" intake, through Scythe KAMA BAY
    4) On CPU Ultra 120 Heatsink, configured as push
    5) Rear exhaust
    6) Possibly on S1 if temperatures warrant it.


Any advice, reassurance, comments, etc are welcomed! :oops:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 10:12 am 
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A few notes:

From what I've seen, the power use on the Q9450 is only slightly higher than the Q9300, and still well below the previous generation. The big difference between the two is that the Q9450 has double the L2 cache which should give it a noticeable boost in speed. I was able to snag one for $300, but I don't know if the deal is still around. Whatever you pick, you should be happy.

I'm also working on a P182 case with Slipstreams. I chose 1200rpm versions with variable speed control via the motherboard. If it doesn't work, I'll set the variance to nothing and let them run undervolted. At a constant speed, it seems that even the Slipstream 800s would keep the case cool. None of your components are particularly hot.

Furthermore, you probably won't even need all those fans. Assuming you put the HDs in the bottom chamber, they can probably run just fine using only the fan in your Modu82. With that compartment sealed, its not going to have any effect on the other compartment. Then you just need to get cool air to your CPU and Video card. You may not need the Kama bay at all. I'm planning to run without it, using just a single intake fan on the upper HD bay. Lots of people with builds similar to yours are running with no fan at all in the middle-front position. I'd say you could use a fan in the front-middle or on the S1, but not really both.

Of course, the fun part is that fans aren't really expensive. You can order extra (I did too), install all of them, then remove them and undervolt them until you reach a good noise/temperature level.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:18 pm 
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Excellent, thanks for your advice! I think I'm going to buy into the compontents and fans, and just experiment.

I wanted the higher CFM (1200rpm) slips just because my room ambient temperatures are warmer. I know this won't reduce the intake temperatures, but it will help to exhaust the warmer air from the components at a faster rate (I assume) then lower CFM fans.

I agree with the bottom compartment theory, but I'd like to see how the "push" (intake) and "pull" (PSU) effect helps to cool the hard drives.

The KAMA BAY is a real debate of mine. I think I could go passive on the processor with it or visa versa.

Same goes for the front middle intake with a fan, or just putting a fan on the S1.

As I said though, I think I'm just going to buy it all and experiment! Whatever I don't use, I can use it somewhere else or sell it.

(PS - I know the Q9450 has some definate performance perks. I already have the Q9300 though. I have a P4 560J and a PD 840; I think the Q9300 should be a HUGE improvement over both of those BLISTERING HOT processors!)

Thank you again for your advice. If there any others out there with some time to comment, please do! Any advice or reassurance is wonderful!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:24 pm 
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As far as CPU cooling goes, I've heard of a number of people who actually run passive in P182s using the back and top fan with a Kama Bay in front. When doing something like that, you probably want a Scythe Ninja. I haven't heard of many other heatsinks that do as well when passive... if you call having two pull fans within an inch of the heatsink "passive".

The fun part here is that you've got loads of options and all the hardware to try them out. It would actually be interesting to have you try out some of the ideas and report on the results.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:20 pm 
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I am interested in doing this actually. I might write an "article" based on my experience with this project, hopefully it can enlighten and inspire other viewers to try their own silent builds :).

Still looking for more advice :D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 5:37 pm 
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I have built a system very similar to your about 8 months ago. I have been silent pc aware for about 3 years now so it wasn't my first silent build. If i were building it today i would pick almost the exact same components that you have so you have chosen really well.

here are my thoughts...

Mobo is great except it's a pity that in two months they'll release the p45 chipset which is 65nm (as opposed to the 90nm of the p35) and support pcie 2 while probably using less energy :(

I'd pick the 3850 personally especially if you are using the accelero s1. They are identical to the 3870 ddr3 versions AFAIK excpet for clock speed which probably could be easily ramped up with the s1 anyway. Uses less energy at idle. Having said that the 9600gt is also a fine choice

In the P182 with aftermarket coolers like the TRUE and the S1 and no overclocking it really isn't very difficult to get the PC really really quiet nowadays.(even in a hottter climate) I have the same combination. How silent you want the pc almost depends solely on the hard drive(s). Therefore if you can avoid using two drives I would do that.

I would imagine that you will only need about 4 fans total in your system running at about 500rpm. I doubt you'll need 6. Passive is pointless. your hard drives will make more noise than the 500rpm 120mm slipstream


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:49 pm 
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I just learned, you have to be careful with these popups... just lost my post!

Long story short, I just ordered everything about the HD/BR optical drive. I didn't do any research on it, not sure if there is anything better/quieter, if I should get the BR writer (+$80?), etc.

I'm a little upset about the mobo thing. Sadly with technology, it seems to get outdated so quickly. Hopefully I get a good 3-5 years out of this build. Maybe Intel will be down to the pico size manufacturing process by then :lol: (Intel FTW!) Technology is a hobby where you open the wallet and just keep it open...

I had a nice long debate (public and personal) about the ATi cards. I've been a Nvidia fan for ages, so I stuck with my gut instinct and ordered the card listed.

I've read the 800rpm slips are optimal, but 1200rpm w/ undervolting or fan controllers give more flexiblity. Where would you recommend placement of the 4 fans? Is this with or without the kama bay?

Thanks for your time and comments!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:55 am 
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Hello Ben,

SilentBen wrote:
I also thought keeping them all at 1200 rpm verses the varying rpms will give a smoother resonant frequency if any noise comes out of them and a better airflow result.

I've noticed on my fan controller on my existing PC, if I set one identical fan to 1500 and the other to 1800rpms, it has two different "hums" if you will. Throw my power supply fan in there, now I have 3. Might just be me though.


You will have to undervolt them, if you want quiet. You'll have plenty of cooling with them at 600-900RPM, and then they will be a lot quieter.

_________________
Sincerely, Neil
http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 4:29 am 
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Hmm. I tried looking up a few inline resistor undervolt tricks. I think I will buy a few molex PSU splitters and fabricate some inline voltage drops. Changing around the ground to get 7v doesn't seem like a good idea to me... something worries me about additional current. I'm sure it works though as I read!

Just using some thought... 1200rpms / 12v = 100rpms/v. So if I want to make a 800rpm fan, I need to drop voltage down to 8v. The amps stated are 0.26A.

Ohms law says E=I/R, so if want 8v...
E=I/R
8v = .26A/R
(Divide out the .26, algebra)
8v / .26A = R
R = 30.2 ohms

Power requirements...
P = I * E
P = .26A * 8V
P = 2.08w

So I'm looking for a resistor with about 30 ohms and a 2w tolerance to undervolt the fan to 8v.

It's been a while since I played with electronics, but can anyone confirm this?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 7:22 pm 
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SilentBen wrote:
Hmm. I tried looking up a few inline resistor undervolt tricks. I think I will buy a few molex PSU splitters and fabricate some inline voltage drops. Changing around the ground to get 7v doesn't seem like a good idea to me... something worries me about additional current. I'm sure it works though as I read!

Just using some thought... 1200rpms / 12v = 100rpms/v. So if I want to make a 800rpm fan, I need to drop voltage down to 8v. The amps stated are 0.26A.

Ohms law says E=I/R, so if want 8v...
E=I/R
8v = .26A/R
(Divide out the .26, algebra)
8v / .26A = R
R = 30.2 ohms

Power requirements...
P = I * E
P = .26A * 8V
P = 2.08w

So I'm looking for a resistor with about 30 ohms and a 2w tolerance to undervolt the fan to 8v.

It's been a while since I played with electronics, but can anyone confirm this?


I didn't put that much thought into it. :? I would just get a zalman fanmate 2 controller. All you need to know is that it will adjust the speed of your fan.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:51 pm 
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I read an article from the fans forum (sorry, I don't remember the link), and the resistor idea doesn't work like I thought. So scratch that!

Update:
I have completed the build so far. I want to make a posting later on this week, but I am severely time limited. I took pictures of everything and I have a nice story to tell! Some quick highlights...

1) Newegg sent me a DOA HDD. It was making some grinding noises, it was detected as a legacy SATA drive, but locked up on the AHCI SATA controller. I did an advance RMA through WD, instead of dealing with Newegg. Hopefully they send me the same drive!

2) As silly as it sounds, I snipped the middle fan intake, and then the air filter was hitting the fan. It took a lot of careful bending with pliers, but I got it!

3) I also cut the extra plastic on the intake doors, to give it more airflow. I wonder if that modification was worth it, it took me forever and I slipped a few times with the razor! Thank goodness for some mini-bastard cut files. :twisted:

More to come...

The Zalman Fanmate 2 controller... is it possible to have that control all 3 of my intake fans? I don't think I want to do any voltmods, I think having an on-the-fly adjustable fan controller is better for my needs.

Any review on the Scythe Kaze MasterFan Controller 3.5"?[/u]. I'd like to get something to occupy my 3.5" slot!

Thanks again. This build entirely ROCKS and it is deadly quiet! The only thing I kind of wish I would have listened to was about a scythe 800rpm vs 1200rpm fans. The extra CFM is great, but, I'd like to make them quieter. They are audible with a low-pitch hum which is easily ignored when gaming or listening to anything. When just downloading, ehh, yeah... I think I could do better :)


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 Post subject: SilentBen's Update - V1
PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2008 7:22 pm 
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Update:
I finally got around to pulling the pictures of my digital, messing around with them, etc. I will try to fill in my story and experiences as I go... from START to (Pending) FINISH!

First looks
Lots of stuff in lots of boxes. I cheated before I took the picture and looked at some things. Kind of funny thinking that all those boxes are going to equate to a PC!

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OEM CPU - My first
I never bought an OEM CPU before. This is the Q9300 described above. It came out of the Fedex padded mailer, with another padded mailer inside of it, then this little black box. It seems to work great, but I was scared about damage at first! (I used MS paint to remove the s/n from the pic)

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Newegg OEM HDD Packing + RMA story?!?!
Incase you did not already know, Newegg packs hard drives a little on the easy side.

I ended up having a DOA one, maybe not Newegg's fault though. I had an advance RMA with WD, but, after 6 business days and 4 phone calls... I find out the RMA is delayed for up to 2 weeks because of inventory issues. I went to cancel the RMA over the phone, which turned into a 30+ minute hold and supervisor chat. They tried to upgrade me to the Cavier 750gb but I declined and told them if they sent it I would decline it as well as any charges made to my CC. Long story short, took the system 12 hours to clear the RMA. I called Newegg, waited 1 minute on hold and 3 minutes of talking... they issued me a refund RMA and free return shipping, and told me to go ahead and just order a new drive so I'll be ready to go. I expect it tomorrow!

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My unassembled trophy case...
Everything is unpacked and ready to go. I didn't buy the BR/HD-DVD ROM drive that I listed, but I have it on order today. I have also ordered a WD Passport 320GB drive to disassemble and put into a 5.5"/3.5"/USB -> 2.5" notebook drive bay (cost me the same as the 320gb drive, its the same thing, and I get an attractive SATA notebook harddrive reader out of it!), and 2 more gb of the same cheap ram (like $26 after rebate!)

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Remove the Antec Fans! THEY'RE LOUD!
I removed the bottom bay fan, but later put a slipstream down there to cool the hdd bay. I was going to leave it out, but, decided it wouldn't hurt.

I have pictures of me taking out all the other fans and switches, but it's boring! :roll:

I also pulled out all the HDD cages. She's pretty naked now!

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The coverup...
To avoid the great air short from the exposed top vent, I used some duct work aluminum tape and some of the P182's black box to cover things up. I actually just roughly measured things and cut the box with a pair of sissors. The tape is a bit more difficult to work with... very sticky stuff. After that, I installed my first slipstream into the case. Like most quality fans, they have a little arrow pointing to the airflow direction. Very helpful when you haven't installed a fan in a few years!

Image

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The front air intake mods
For those of you who haven't actually read about this already, the front air intakes are pretty weak from the factory. I don't know the exact difference in airflow or pressure, but look at these pictures and you'll understand better.

The doors are pretty restrictive. With a sharp razorblade, small file, and about 30-45 minutes per door, I was to fix that problem quickly. Look at the "before" on the left verses the "after" on the right.

Image

Both the doors after the surjury:
Image

I also cut the bottom and middle fan grills out of the case, just for some added effect. I didn't bother to smooth them off, since I didn't think anyone would be poking around in there. Not sure if it made a big difference or not, but ehh, why not. I left the holes for the stock dust filters, since my environment is relatively dusty and there is some animal dander. It was a pain in the neck after things were built to bend the remaining fan grills so the dust filters didn't grind the fans. It is possible, just takes trial and error!

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KAMA Bay Issue?

This was a little time consuming to figure out the screw arrangements to fit in the P182. Since the P182 uses a rail-based system for the 5.25" and 3.5" bays, it is kind of hard to directly screw something into the chassis. I replaced the original Scythe fan with the Slipsteam as an intake, and mounted it towards the bottom the 5.25" bay (more inline with the heatsink). Then I used some of the hvac aluminum tape to secure the rails inside the case. Worked like a charm, my KAMA bay is tight and flush with that screw configuration!

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My Enermax MODU82+ 625W story...
I agreed entirely about the idea to mount the intake fan upwards, so I did at first. The cables were definately long enough to go through the P182 cable routing on the inside, but, I wanted them behind the motherboard for improved airflow. Well, then the 4/6-pin connector is just a little short. I ended up flipping it around (you will see this towards the end), intake fan down. Another thing I forgot, this PSU doesn't have any front/back fan. The modular cabling plugs are inside, so no fans there! This is not a problem for the MODU82+ since it runs really effectively, and even the intake fan doesn't seem to exceed 500rpm under full load for me. For my hard drives though, I put the slipstream back in the bottom position just to pull some heat away from them.

Later on in the story, all their cables are beautifully braided and just the perfect length for this P182 project. I haven't tried any other PSUs in this case yet, but speaking from past experience, I've had some cables that needed extensions or other cables that I wish I could cut!

(PS - Enermax people are smart, they wrote MODU82+ so their logo appears upright. I thought after I flipped it, that I was putting it back the same way... :lol:)

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The video card... go Accelero!
Well, the EVGA 9600GT had a beautiful heatsink fan combo on there at first. Now it's sitting in a box! I was scared at first to do this modification but I already bought everything. Amazingly enough, the directions were pretty clear to me and so I dove into it after my debate.

My squawk list is pretty minimal here.
I couldn't get anything on the voltage regulators. I know the package has a VREG heatsink for ATi cards, but no matter how I tried to squeeze it in, it just wouldn't go. So I left it, nothing on the VREGs, and no problems yet.

The one RAM heatsink towards the edge of the card, will hit the heatpipe unless you move it. In the picture, it is the little black square (8 total) closest to the PCIe locking peg on the video card. I had to kind of carefully push the heatsink while holding the S1 above it, until it fit. The heatsink is probably hanging off the RAM by 1/3rd of where it should be.

The mounting holes for a 9600GT are not specified in the older directions. They use the same as at the 8800GT, which is the outside set of holes. This was made clear on the website too, but, I had to look it up to be sure.

The retension clips are kind of a pain too. Just be careful not to screw down the card (read the instructions!) enitrely before trying to mount the clips.

Before: Old Heatsink behind the naked card...
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After: AC Accelero S1 Rev. 2 mounted to an EVGA GeForce 9600GT
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The HUGE tower
Ok. I seen pictures of the Thermalright Ultra120 Extreme before, but it is really beast. I was almost afraid it wouldn't fit in the P182! Well, to be honest, there was not much to talk about here. I ordered additional fan clips that I didn't need, oops. They included a thermal interface material, I ordered more from Tuniq, but ended up using my Arctic Silver 5.

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It was kind of hard figuring out how to attach the slipstream to it, but after about 5 minutes I got it. The pictures can explain it better then I can, just look at the way the clips are attached. Remember to put the included antivibration strips on it before the fan. Not only does it serve a point, but it helps the clips to be tighter on the fan.

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No problem though. It mounted great to the Gigabyte EP35-DS4 mobo using the screws and backplate compared to the Intel OEM HSF push-pins. I will NEVER use the push-pin design heatsinks again. The push-pin heatsinks always concerned me that they were not set properly, I usually use a regular screwdriver and push the pins down manually and lock them.

All that was left was to mount the motherboard and heatsink into the case. This was probably the easiest thing ever. The rear I/O panel fit perfectly, the motherboard standoffs were all correct in the P182 (no less or more needed), easy.

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Almost done...

Wiring in this case wasn't that bad. I had to use the provided wire clips and make things pretty tight. The MODU82+'s cables are kind of thick, but, still reasonable to fit in the P182's behind the motherboard cable area. My stratgedy was to keep the cables as tight together without overlapping. I worked the excess cables in a clockwise pattern until I could comfortably place the side panel on. Takes me about 15 minutes every time I change a cable though.

Aside from a few recent changes, the interior still looks about the same now. I will be getting rid of the IDE cable since I will install the SATA BR/HD drive and I will work on tucking some of the cables away better.

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My First Bootup
Amazingly, EVERYTHING worked perfectly on the first boot. NOT! As I said earlier, the dust filter on the middle air intake was hitting the fan when it was running. With a pair of pliers, trial and error, and patentice, it was fixed.

The DOA hard drive was discovered prior to my O/S install, when I enabled SMART and the AHCI Intel controller... it was locking up the system when initalizing the drives.

The system was significantly quieter then my circa '05 Prescott in a Thermaltake Xaser V, all stock cooling, but, I heard the fan hum! :twisted:

Other then that though, I can't report any major issues. All were kind of minor things.

Fan Noise Resolution

Ok, I was "quiet" but not "silent". So I said, lets consult the wiser and I made another thread... see here

I thought a fan controller would solve my problems, but, I guess I really wasn't interested in another device, all the extra cabling and wire routing, etc. So I did my first voltmod ever! I went for the safer 5v approach, since I didn't want to risk damaging my beautiful new power supply. See the below picture!

I ended up running more wires anyway, I put the fans on their own modular cable... and daisy chained all the 4-pin molex connectors together. I can easily plug in whatever fan I want to the 5v or the 12v that way (except for the CPU fan, which is my ONLY motherboard controlled fan). I may put a switch in to do that, but honestly, I'm loving the 1200rpm Slipstreams running at 5v... I'm getting a hair under 800rpm from the BIOS reading.

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Bright lights are annoying...
A simple mod here that I learned in preschool. Black construction paper works wonders for blocking off light! The hdd1/hdd2/pwr lights in the P182 are kind of bright and they "leak" out the side vent area. This is annoying to see at night or even during the day... lights flashing in your eyes. This is another reason why I'm glad my Xaser V is retired! So I took the front plate off again, cut up black construction paper, removed the LEDs (except for PWR), stuck the construction paper in the grooves (you will see what I mean if you look at that inside LED area of the front plate), put the lights back in, and then wow... no more bleeding light. See the picture for the "after" effect.

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I love this machine... but more to come!
Although my build is still not complete and I am waiting on some additional items, this is truly one of the best machines I've worked with. I'm very satisified that I stayed away from watercooling! Without any lab-specifics, I can BARELY hear my system from about 2ft away. The loudest thing I hear is the hard drive seeking, and even that is so quiet I barely notice it.

So far, everyone that posted here is about right! Honestly, I think I'm a little overkill, but then again, I'm happy with my noise levels.

The temperatures are pretty low. At this very moment, Realtemp reports me at 42C on average, under full load it does not exceed 50C. The mobo reports an ambient case temp of 40C (its 28C in the room, maybe this is a little high?), 25C at processor. Speedfan reports the HDD is at 34C, all fans under 800rpm, PSU fan at 490rpm, RivaTuner reports video GPU at about 46C and around 50C after playing games for around an hour. All these numbers seem to be far within tolerance and I have very little noise to worry about.

My BIOS shortly after boot:
Image
(PS - I know my RAM is specificed for 2.1v, but it runs fine and stable at the 1.9v)

Well, I wrote enough for one night. Phew!

Oh, and for the fans...

    1) Exhaust Scythe Slipstream 1200rpm, 5v undervolted
    2) Heatsink Scythe Slipstream 1200rpm, MB Voltage Controlled
    3) KAMA Bay w/ Scythe Slipstream 1200rpm, 5v undervolted
    4) Middle air intake Scythe Slipstream 1200rpm, 5v undervolted
    5) Bottom compartment, pull-oriented from HD bay to MODU82+ Scythe Slipstream 1200rpm, 5v undervolted
    6) Stock MODU82+ Fan, MB connected

I will update for forum after my new orders arrive and I get things installed. Thank you SPCR community for your continued efforts, advice, and years of combined experience! :D

I feel successful and I'm not even done yet! 8)


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PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2008 9:50 pm 
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Wow. You've obviously gotten a lot out of this site. Your PC is pretty much the defacto build around here for people who want the ultimate silent/gaming power build. That was brave of you to disassemble the 9600gt before testing whether it worked. You probably would have appreciated the accelero more had you seen how crappy stock cooling is ;)

You'll eventually get to the point where the only things you'll hear are a mild buzz from the power supply and the hard disk. Your temps should be/are good and you'll have nothing to worry about there. Why even connect the front panel lights at all? I like to think of my system as just a big black noiseless box. The only way you can tell whether it's on or not is by turning on the monitor ;)


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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 6:11 am 
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I've been a SPCR reader for a while, and I never posted anything until I was ready to commit to buying. I should have tested the 9600GT before disassembly amongst some of the other components, but I did not have a quality "test box" to test things with. I recommend TESTING things to everyone. I'm not a good example though! :roll:

I have no buzz or coil whine at the time of writing. I think you really pay for what you get in a power supply! I've had bad experiences with the generic PSUs and even a "cheap" name brand one... so, I'm pretty sure that I bought the best possible PSU at the time of writing. 625w is WAY overkill for my power requirements :twisted: , but, it's still quiet and leaves me room to upgrade to more power hungry (or less efficient) devices in the future.

Edit: I left the case lights installed since I close the front door on them anyway. I don't really see much of the light radiation at night that way. I like to see the power and HD activity light sometimes, since everything is so quiet!


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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 8:13 pm 
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see what effect disabling any of the front fans has on your temps, think you might be good with one removed.


ambient temp has a notable affect on my amd machine, so being in a warm place won't help, but your temps look fine.

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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 7:47 am 
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Hmm. Any suggestions to which one?

I was thinking maybe the slipstream installed in the Kama Bay, since the CPU heatsink is setup as a push, and the exhaust is a push. I'd imagine it will use the Kama Bay as a passive air intake.

The middle air intake I think is important to leave, since the 9600GT is passive... the middle slipstreak acts as a push. There is nothing there specifically to remove the heat other then the vented PCI slot covers (and middle bay intake fan), which makes a fair passive exhaust.

The bottom fan for the hard drives is kind of a debate for me. I don't think it is effective as a pull-setup (the middle divider fan between PSU and HDD). It would make sense to be on the opposite side of the HDD, but I think I need to do another case mod for that. Is it even necessary though?

Still, just aside from the fan comment... I think my machine is "silent" even with all those fans! 8)


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 12:14 pm 
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really nice tidy finish mate, much like i would like when i get my new case. i have read in other articles about the kama bay, i guess its a matter of preference but some say its not as effective.

my question was about the grill, how easy was it to modify the front doors.

i really want the p182, but iv read about the air intake issues due to the doors, and also the top fan being removed completely.

its £80 of case which is not really worth it if you have to modify yourself.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 2:01 pm 
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Ash wrote:
really nice tidy finish mate, much like i would like when i get my new case. i have read in other articles about the kama bay, i guess its a matter of preference but some say its not as effective.

my question was about the grill, how easy was it to modify the front doors.

i really want the p182, but iv read about the air intake issues due to the doors, and also the top fan being removed completely.

its £80 of case which is not really worth it if you have to modify yourself.


Don't bother modding the front doors. Just simply remove them. you find that the filter gets a bit dusty after a week and the doors get in the way anyway. No other mods are required to use the p182. Seems to be a bit of a design flaw to have those doors.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 2:12 pm 
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ok thanks

what about the top fan?

its already a shame that the stock fans are noisy and need replacing, but then you cant even use the switch at the back then to control speed. i know fans are probably better to control in other ways but its still a feature of the case.

i was going to just put a really slow fan at the top, just to get rid of any heat from the case, but iv read the fan disrupts air flow out from the back away from the cpu hs and something about air short?

there was another interesting article about using foam to block off parts of the case where air is not needed, like under psu, the corner gap between the top and exhaust fan, and the side of the case where the power and led cables come through.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 2:20 pm 
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Ash wrote:
there was another interesting article about using foam to block off parts of the case where air is not needed, like under psu, the corner gap between the top and exhaust fan, and the side of the case where the power and led cables come through.

Heh. That would have been me. I have to admit it feels odd to have intelligent people talking about things I did. This is like the anti-Slashdot.

I had decent results with my foam. I think the most successful uses of it were blocking off the 5.25" bays and the space under the PSU (assuming you've gone fan-up, of course). The foam on the sides of the PSU didn't really do all that much unless you were willing to basically encase the PSU in it (dust was already accumulating behind the foam walls I put in). Blocking off the space around the front panel wires is useful for stopping dust buildup, but it was a bit of a pain to slip the wires through the foam and you have to cut a notch for the side panel.

I still don't know whether the foam wedge in the top between the fans does anything. I really can't feel any sort of air short happening there. Maybe its just my layout or the fact that I have a significant fan on top (Slipstream @ 660rpms). I'd say so long as you have any fan up there, you don't have to worry about an air short. Of course, my specialty is coding, so feel free to defer to others.

I'd feel silly calling the use of foam "modding" but I have convinced myself that it was useful.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 5:02 pm 
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This is a great thread. I'm about to order parts for a similar build, and your walk through gives nice ideas and insights. Thanks :!:


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 5:07 pm 
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Not to sound lame, but I think anything you do to improve (or worsen) anything beyond factory or OEM standards can be considered "modding". You're modifying a design, I think its acceptable! 8)

The front door modification was a little more challenging then I expected. I did it over a wood block with a fixed-blade razor blade. I would score the plastic first (lightly go over my path to cut), and then apply pressure at about a 45 degree angle with the tip of the razor blade at a corner. I slipped a few times and cut into the other plastic and I had tons of cuts into the wood! The plastic sort of cracks instead of a cut, so its rough! I had a small bastard file that I used to file down my mistakes and smooth out the rough edges. Overall, I'm not sure if it was worth it or not. :?:

My weakest point about doing all this... I don't have any before or after statistics to justify what the modifications did to improve performance and/or silence. I based my judgement on common sense and other articles on the forum. But, once again, I'm happy with things so far!

The undervolting on the fans was the "best" thing I did from a noise aspect. If I would have taken the other SPCR members advice, I would have bought the Slipstream 800rpms instead 1200rpms... it makes such a difference! The undervolting works well too, I read its only about 1db or less difference verses buying the 1200rpm (louder) and undervolting to 800rpm, vs 800rpm (quieter) at 12v. :oops:

Let me know if any of you have questions. I'll be happy to try to help!

(PS - Newegg's new drive came in, wrapped once in bubble wrap. This one works ok, <24 hours though! I have to add more pictures about the 320gb WD and 3.5" project... I'll have to post a tutorial on the disassembly of the Passport in another thread too! I'm still waiting on the BR/HD drive from Mwave.)


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 5:25 pm 
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I think you did a great job, and brave, as someone already wrote, setting everything up in one go before turning the power switch on for the first time.

Just a question if you don't mind.. I know you did your own mod for tweaking the fans. Would you have gone for a fan speed controller such as a kaze master 5.25" in retrospect?


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 10:02 pm 
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I was considering a 5.25" fan controller, but, the Kama Bay takes up 3 of the 4 slots. I have used fan controllers before... usually I set them once and forget about them.

If I didn't voltmod, I would have aimed for a 3.5" controller or used one of the rheostats/variable resistor fan controllers.

I actually posted about this, sort of... see here

Depending on the fans you get... you may or may not need a fan controller. Believe me, I'm having a hell of a time with wires already, I'm not sure you want to clutter up your case too much more with a fan controller. I've shoved all my wires behind the motherboard tray, it's kind of clean on the inside that way.


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PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2008 5:20 am 
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I'm gonna sound like a total noob now :)

How do you undervolt a fan? :)


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PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2008 5:59 am 
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To undervolt, there are several great guides... I specifically used Mike C's Guide from SPCR...

Or even just go to the original thread and link for LOADS of information, Building your own fan controller

I used the 5v trick instead of 7v, since 7v will put a little bit of amps back into your power supply and any other device on the line. It just was not worth my interest to do that! By theory it is not good but by practice it doesn't seem to hurt much from other people's reviews.

5v = good for me and my slips. :D

You are not a noob btw, at least you asked questions! Thanks for your question!

-----

You only have to install 1x to undervolt all of your fans. If you look at my picture, I have my "5v molex" plug connected to the end of my power supply cable (black in color, at bottom of the pic) and then the other side is connected to the first molex connector (happens to 3 a pin mini to a 4 pin molex) for my fans. Then, all the other fans except my CPU fan, plug into that molex connector. Scythe ships all the slipstreams with those molex connectors. Technically, you can just modify one of those included connectors if you don't have a spare molex plug...

Quote:
Image


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