Silent PC Review is dedicated to reviews, news and information about acoustics of computers and components, as well as their energy efficiency and thermal performance.

Intel Extreme (Gaming) Masters Global Challenge at West Edmonton Mall

Internet News

Experience the fun of PC gaming and a chance to try out new Core i7 processors at the Intel Extreme Masters global challenge. Watch PC gamers from around the world compete in top PC games: Counter-Strike 1.6, World of Warcraft and Quake Live. Visitors can also experience the thrill of BMW Sauber F1 Simulators and win cool prizes. This international throw-down has great prizes for pro gamers and the public. The games begin at the West Edmonton Mall, Dec 11–13. Full details at www.intelextrememasters.com.

Antec NSK1480: The Fusion gets Smaller

Cases|Damping
Antec keeps rolling with isolated-chamber cases descended from the P180. This time, the Fusion gets shrunk to a half-height version in the NSK1480.

Lenovo IdeaCentre Q110: Tiny ION Nettop

Complete|Mobile Systems
The IdeaCentre Q110 shares the Q100's tiny form factor and Atom 230 processor, but has more RAM, a bigger hard drive and most notably, Nvidia's ION chipset. As a result, it can play most high definition video formats, making it a candidate for the ultimate SFF media PC.

Enermax Eco80+ 500W PSU

Power
In Enermax' seven (!) lines of power supplies, the Eco80+ is one of two tagged as "eco". The "Love our Earth" tagline on the packaging attests that "eco" stands for ecology, but its position at the low-end of Enermax' lineup suggests that "economy" might also be a relevant tag. How fares this modest PSU in these times of silent, 90% efficiency, $200 models?

Antec Twelve Hundred Gaming Case

Cases|Damping
The Twelve Hundred is essentially a larger version of the Nine Hundred Two, sharing the same core design, but taller, accommodating two extra fans, an additional hard drive cage and support for the excellent Antec CP-850 power supply. It'll be interesting to see how much difference this combination makes.

More 500GB notebook drives: Seagate 7200.4 & Hitachi 5K500.B

Storage
Two more half-terabyte notebook drives spin through, a 7200rpm Seagate and a 5400rpm Hitachi: Acoustics and power efficiency continue to improve.

Scythe Quiet Drive 2.5

Storage
The Scythe Quiet Drive 2.5 is a noise & vibration dampening enclosure for 2.5" drives. Can it make a 7200rpm notebook drive quiet enough to take on an SSD, at least acoustically and in storage capacity?

Lenovo IdeaCentre Q100: World's Thinnest, Smallest Nettop

Complete|Mobile Systems
The Lenovo IdeaCentre Q100 has unimpressive specs: an Atom 1.6 GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM, and a 160GB hard drive. What stands out is its tiny size, fanless chassis and extremely quiet operation.

ZEROtherm Nirvana CPU Cooler

Cooling
The Nirvana is the successor to a fairly proficient CPU cooler, the ZEROtherm Zen. It retains much of the Zen's core design elements but sports a new look with nickel-plating and a frameless fan.

Winmate DD-24AX DC-DC Module for Silent, Efficient Power

Power
Power solutions continue to evolve in this era of ubiquitous computing. Electrodacus offers the PC enthusiast a picoPSU alternate: A silent, 88% efficient DC-DC converter module with full regulation to 130W output... at a price made for ultra SFF hobbyists. A close look the Winmate DD-24AX under the SPCR power microscope.

Atom energy efficiency champ: Intel D945GSEJT w/ Morex T1610 fanless case

Cases|Damping | Complete|Mobile Systems | CPUs|Motherboards
The first Atom-embedded mini-ITX board from Intel to feature the mobile 945GSE Express Chipset. You can hear the cheers from minimalist, green, and silent PC enthusiasts. Along with the lower power profile, the physical profile has also been dramatically reduced, allowing fanless operation in the 1.2-liter Morex T1610 case.

m-ITX Cases: SEED MA-280B and Cooler Master Elite 100

Cases|Damping
A pair of small form factor cases, from Cooler Master and a lesser known brand called SEED, are the latest to pass through SPCR's test labs. Can either drive an ION-powered system without offending our sensitive hearing?

X-650: Seasonic hits Gold

Power
The X-series power supplies achieved 80 Plus Gold nearly a year ago, and they're finally on the market now. Is Seasonic's best also SPCR's most highly recommended? Yes. Read all the details here.

StoneWave Pro Studio i7 Workstation PC

Complete|Mobile Systems
The Pro Studio i7 is meant for use as a digital audio workstation in a recording studio, and has the distinction of being Energy Star certified. StoneWave, an audio computing specialist, says it is very quiet, so we took it for a spin in our anechoic chamber.

5900rpm Seagate Hard Drives: Barracuda LP, Pipeline HD .2

Storage
Seagate's Barracuda LP and Pipeline HD .2 series hard drives sport 500GB platters and a rotational speed of 5900rpm, giving them a slight edge in performance over Western Digital Caviar Green and Samsung EcoGreen lines: Is there a cost?