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.

Antec P180 Review, Part 1: A Silent System

Cases|Damping
In Part One of this 2-part review, Ralf Hutter installed a low-power, low thermal Pentium-M system in his sample Antec P180 and tweaked it for minimal noise. RH's acoustic analysis relies on what he heard, but you'll find his conclusions well-supported, logical and perfectly understandable. Part Two, a more comprehensive study with high power components by Devon Cooke, will be coming soon.

Kloss KL-I915B SFF barebones PC

Complete|Mobile Systems
Trigem's Kloss barebones system features a double-decker chassis and a CPU duct in a box that looks more like a kitchen appliance than any SFF that has come before. Can this unusual design address the space and heat issues that often affect systems of this size, especially given the challenge of the socket 775 (Prescott) platform they've chosen?

AOpen i915GMm-HFS: 2nd Gen Pentium M desktop board

CPUs|Motherboards
AOpen followed up on its initial Pentium M micro-ATX motherboard offering from last year with the i915GMm-HFS, based on the new 915G/ICH6 chipset. Included on this board are advanced features like PCIe x16, DDR2, SATA300, HD Audio and a 533MHz FSB. The integrated graphics includes not only analog VGA out, but DVI and HDTV outputs as well. AOpen was kind enough to send us one of these brand new boards a few weeks ago; now we have a review for you.

Scythe SCNJ-1000 Ninja heatsink

Cooling
Scythe's latest kick at the fanless can is another tall heatpipe heatsink with a loosely spaced fins structure. Unlike the earlier NCU series, which were made only to fit socket 478, the Ninja can be used with all modern desktop CPU platforms. The Ninja, in some ways, is almost conventional by Scythe standards, with no dramatic twists or departures from their previous designs. But it's bigger. A lot bigger. It may not be the biggest HS you can find in the enthusiast PC cooling market today, but it's not far off. How does the Scythe Ninja fare in SPCR's HS torture tests? NOTE: Postscript on Ninja Plus Rev. B (basically the 3rd version) added on Dec 15, 2007

WD Scorpio 80G & Fujitsu SATA 80G notebook drives

Storage
We continue expanding our database of quiet notebook drives with a review of the Western Digital Scorpio 80G and a new Fujitsu 80G, the first SATA notebook drive.

Computex '05: Mini AOpen

No, it's not a Mac Mini. It's AOpen's new Pentium-M based Mac Mini lookalike, codenamed Pandora. Unveiled at Computex 2005, this tiny product is yet another AOpen effort to take advantage of the powerful formerly mobile Intel CPU in the desktop space. A fully integrated system incorporating wireless LAN, the Pandora was brought to prototype form in just a month, according to Joseph Hsu, a Technical Manager at AOpen. It uses a single blower fan that turns on only when needed. The aluminum casing was warm but the fan was not running when these photos were taken in the hot tradeshow room. A pearl white enamel painted version was also shown at AOpen's private suite display. Look for a Sept market release date.

AOpen quiet-friendly innovations at Computex

AOpen will present the world’s first ATX Pentium M motherboard -- i915Ga-HFS -- at Computex Taipei 2005. Like their last mATX P-M board, i915GMm-HFS, it is based Intel's 915G/ICH6 desktop chipset. It's loaded: Gigabit Ethernet, 7.1-ch. High Def Audio, PCI Express x1 and x16 slots, and VGA, four SATA ports, DVI, S-Video, HDTV video outputs and SpeedStep. The new board features a socket 478 heatsink retention bracket, a welcome relief after the tiny non-standard HSF of the i915GMm-HFS.

AOpen also will unveil 945 chipset motherboards for Intel dual-core processors -- i945Ga-PLF and i945Pa-PLF -- that support the company's Power Master technology, which can work in conjunction with Speedstep to further reduce power consumption and heat when the system in idle.

Puget Custom Pentium-M Rig: A Silent WC System

Complete|Mobile Systems
As a demonstration of what Puget Custom Computers can do, this custom system succeeds marvelously. Very few companies that sell whole systems are willing to do the kind of modification that this Puget system required. A self-contained, passively cooled water cooling system is not the kind of thing you can request of just any system builder. With the proper selection of parts, just one of Puget's modifications could make the difference between an audible and an inaudible system.

Antec P180: A Visual Tour

Cases|Damping
No it is still not a review, we are bogged down in the details and the volume of data we're generating in the lab. But here is a detailed tour of this new case that will tell many of you what you want to know. And a couple of interesting revelations about origins of the P180 and its future.

Seasonic S12-500 & S12-600 Power Supplies

Power
They are the most powerful of the S12 series, and they are based on a more efficient circuit design than the smaller models in the line. The S12-430 is the current quiet leader among fan-cooled PSUs, but the 500 and 600 have even higher efficiency and dual PCI-e vidcard support for SLI. And they all have new Adda brand 120mm fans. SPCR's full review on the S12-500 and S12-600.

Western Digital drives: Raptor 74 & Caviar SE 250

Storage
News about Fluid Dynamic Bearing (FDB) motors being implemented across WD's entire range of hard drives promted us to take a serious look at some of their products. The two examined here today are the super-fast Raptor and a large capacity 7200 rpm Caviar SE, and they are both a lot quieter than WD drives used to be.

Scythe Silent Box SBX-1000 HDD Enclosure

Storage
The name says it all: An enclosure intended to silence a HDD. What it doesn't tell you is that that it is made of rubber (the same kind as car tires), and uses a Heatlane flat heatpipe to help keep the drive cool.

Maxtor Diamondmax 10/300 & Hitachi 7K250 Hard Drives

Storage
Maxtor's top desktop offering (300 Gb) and one of Hitachi's former top-of-lines (250 Gb), now relegated to middling status, are featured in this review. Both acoustic noise and vibration are examined, along with power & thermal related issues. They represent reasonable alternatives to our perennial quiet HDD recommendations.

Antec Phantom 500

Power
Antec adds a fan to their Phantom 350 fanless PSU, increases output to 500W, keeps the price the same, and calls it a "Hybrid Technology" power supply. Is this more marketing double talk or a genuine improvement? If a fanless PSU is silent, how is a fan-equipped version better? Which should you get, since they're the same price? Our long review on this rather complicated product.

Thermaltake W0029 Fanless Purepower 350 PSU

Power
Thermaltake's entry into the fanless PSU sweepstakes features not only a heavy external casing but heatpipes and external copper fins borrowed from one of their heatsinks. No 24-pin ATX, but SATA connectors; no PFC but high efficiency.