Silent PC Review is passionate about ergonomic spaces for people and finding creative, practical solutions to silencing all kinds of IT machines. We provide detailed reviews and ground-breaking knowhow about the acoustics of computers and components, as well as their energy efficiency and thermal performance.

proSilence PCS-350 Fanless PSU

Power
Fanless operation is the Holy Grail of silent computing: The proSilence PCS-350W is the first fanless drop-in substitute for a ATX12V Power Supply. It is not a product for everyone, but in the right PC configuration, this PSU gets you one step closer to the fanless ideal.

Power Mac G5 3X quieter than G4

Click to reach Apple page on quiet case design
So their promotional pages proclaim. Considering how noisy the G4s are, this really isn't hard to do, especially as the phrase "3 times quieter" is not qualified with any real measurements. It could mean almost anything in the world of marketingspeak.

Still, they appear to have developed a case design superior to the standard PC tower ATX: "The Power Mac G5’s enclosure houses four discrete thermal zones to compartmentalize the primary heat-producing components. Fans in the zones spin at very low speeds resulting in a system three times quieter than the Power Mac G4."

Samsung SCX-4216F Multifunction Printer

Audio|Video|Misc
It's another first: The Samsung Laser MFP SCX-4216F is the first printing device to be submitted for review at SilentPCReview. This 4-in-1 unit prints, faxes, scans and copies, quickly with a godd deal of competence. It's quite a nice unit, though not particularly or unusually quiet. It is a good way to reduce the clutter of many stand-alone office machines.

Seagate "Momentus" - silent notebook HDD

In a news release dated 16 June 2003, Seagate announced the new Momentus hard drive, the first notebook HDD (2.5" form factor) to offer 5400-rpm performance and optional 8-Mbyte cache with power consumption comparable to current mainstream 4200-rpm notebook drives. Specifications for the new Momentus, which is already shipping to large corporate clients in 20G and 40G capacity (single platter for either size), show maximum power consumption of just 2.4W! Its noise ratings are on par with or better than the Barracuda IV single platter HDDs. Depending on pricing and availability, these may become popular in PCs other than notebooks -- small form factor desktops and other miniatures that are all the rage. This is Seagates first entry into the notebook market.

Stylish compact Tranquil PC

click to enlarge imageThe Tranquil PC is a "compact, stylish PC system for the discerning user" based around a VIA EPIA M10000 with Nehemiah core 1GHz CPU. The basic system features integrated fanless cooling along with a quiet hard drive and slim-line optical drive for very quiet operation. This Brit system certainly is a looker, done up in extruded aluminum panels and an acrylic blue-glow front panel. Comes in different color combinations, of course. Very nice for a complete PC that starts at just £399.00.

Yes, it does draw comparison to the Hush PC, in the same way that certain BMWs evoke certain Mercedes: These machines bring a lot of panache to the Small Form Factor (a term which has always sounded so pedestrian). Check out Tranquil PC's web site for more details on this sexy wee beast.

Nexus NX-4000 PSU

Power
The follow-up to its successful NX-3000 power supply is a higher power 400W model called... the NX-4000! We put the Nexus NX-4000 PSU through the grinder in SPCR's torture chamber and find out if it stays mum (quiet) and strong (stable).

Deltatronic Manufacturing Fanless P43Ghz

Deltatronic Inc. has been offering a totally fanless modified chieftec case that can house the latest p4 processors and radeon gfx cards. Cooling is done via fanless PSU w. external heatsink, heat spreaders on CPU and GPU carrying heat to the case exterior (a modded chieftec with cooling fins on side). Looks very serious!

Zalman ZM-MFC1 Multi Fan Controller

Fans|Controls
Our second multiple fan controller review is on the Zalman ZM-MFC1, a fairly sophisticated, capable device. How does it compare to the buget-priced Sunbeam Rheobus?

Reykjavík DIY Quiet PC

Do-It-Yourself Systems
Our second multiple fan controller review is on the Zalman ZM-MFC1, a fairly sophisticated, capable device. How does it compare to the buget-priced Sunbeam Rheobus?...

Quiet Computing from VIA

VIA Technologies has just created an entire new section on their website dedicated specifically to "Quiet Computing from VIA." Sub-pages and PDF downloadables on relevant topics make it one of the most comprehensive noise/silence related web resources by any PC company:

  • Why is Noise a Problem?
  • How PC Noise Affects You
  • Noise Matters
  • Noise, Computing and VIA (white paper)
  • An Introduction to Measuring PC Noise
  • SPCR had a hand in this: The last two downloadable PDF articles are by yours sincerely.

    VIA Arena, which is VIA's tech support portal, also has a new article about PC noise related stress. Altogether, these new pages represent a major positioning statement and a deeper commitment to the Quiet PC for VIA, one that may augur increased development on the quiet front, not only from VIA but also from their partners, and from competitors who don't want to miss out on new markets.

    Review: Simple Fan Controllers by Zalman

    Fans|Controls
    Simple fan speed controllers are basic building blocks for PC silencers. Zalman has been the greatest innovator in this unglamorous product category. An examination of three simple, inexpensive and very useful fan controllers from Zalman.

    Review: Sunbeam Rheobus Fan Controller

    Fans|Controls
    Part one of a roundup of multiple fan controllers is on the Sunbeam Rheobus, a very inexpensive yet capable device. Look for part 2 on the Zalman multi-fan controller in the next few days.

    The Silent PC has a new address

    Tomas Risberg wrote to say that his landmark site, The Silent PC, has been moved to a new domain: http://www.silent.se. All silent PC enthusiasts should update their bookmarks. SPCR's has already been updated (in http://www.silentpcreview.com

    Review: Quiet HDDs by Samsung, Hitachi & Seagate

    Storage
    Quiet high capacity hard drives from Samsung and Hitachi go up against our old low-noise favorite, the Seagate Barracuda IV. How do these speedy big new drives compare for noise against the acoustic reference standard? An extensive noise-focused roundup review of 4 drives.

    Simple PSU Fan Swap Technique

    Fans|Controls | Power
    A common mod done by many SPCR readers is to swap out noisy fans in power supplies with quieter ones. There is always a risk of PSU overheating and resulting in early failure, but as questions about this procedure come up constantly, here is a simple pictorial of the most common scenario.