SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Info & chat about quiet prebuilt, small form factor and barebones systems, people's experiences with vendors thereof, etc.

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Merovanq
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2016 4:25 am

SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Merovanq » Sun Jul 03, 2016 4:30 am

Hi all,

I need to either buy or build a new PC. My current MSI GS70 is coming to an end and I'm going to replace with a SFF and an iPad Pro.

Wanted to get some guidance, I have looked around online and the best I can see to buy is the Zotac Magnus EN980 due to be released shortly. Welcome any other options or more than happy to consider a build if I can get what I'd like from it.

Keys:

SFF attractive case (ideally silver not black)
Silent or extremely quiet
Support to run 2 x 27" IPS monitors over DisplayPort at 2560x1440p 60fps (might change this to a LG34UM95 34" widescreen 21:9 so thunderbolt 2 would be useful)
Also 1xHDMI would be useful

Graphics - I don't run any extreme games or VR currently but would like a good option here but not up to speed with all of the latest and greatest - would polaris be a better option for the size

Processor - I play Football Manager which is fairly processor intensive so would prefer an excellent option here

HDD - I have an existing 500GB SATA-III SSD Samsung 840 Series which I am happy to use in the new build/purchase

Memory - 16GB+ happy to see options for type

OS - Windows 8.1/10 already purchased

LAN & WIFI
Audio - I use a Bose Soundlink Mini 2 which either uses bluetooth or headphone in
Inputs - Use logitech wireless keyboard and mouse
USB - I use for charging devices so at least 2 ports

In terms of budget, it's not unlimited but in general if I see something that I like then I'd go for it so happy to see what's on the market or possible to build. I have a reasonable IT skill set but haven't done any custom PCs for about 10 years, not done non-standard cooling (liquid, heat rods etc)

quest_for_silence
Posts: 5275
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2007 10:12 am
Location: ITALY

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by quest_for_silence » Sun Jul 03, 2016 8:09 am

Merovanq wrote:the best I can see to buy is the Zotac Magnus EN980 due to be released shortly.

Nice rig, but it cannot be really quiet, if that matters, as any similarly sized rig.

Merovanq wrote:SFF attractive case (ideally silver not black)

Attraction is an highly subjective matter.

With reference to how little you can go with the dimensions, you might give a look to the SPCR's Lian Li PC-Q10 review. Second best (noise wise) but 1/3rd smaller is probably the Silverstone RVZ-02 along with the Ncase M1.

Merovanq wrote:Graphics - I don't run any extreme games or VR currently but would like a good option here but not up to speed with all of the latest and greatest - would polaris be a better option for the size
For an actually silent or extremely quiet setup, personally I would not afford anything hotter than a GTX 1060/GTX 960/RX 470.

Merovanq
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2016 4:25 am

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Merovanq » Sun Jul 03, 2016 12:03 pm

I think I'm looking for quiet not silent from reading the definitions here.

Those cases don't really grab me - it's going to be on display in a living room so has to be nice enough for the OH!

Deer87
Posts: 43
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:58 am
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Deer87 » Mon Jul 04, 2016 2:09 am

Merovanq wrote:I think I'm looking for quiet not silent from reading the definitions here.

Those cases don't really grab me - it's going to be on display in a living room so has to be nice enough for the OH!
Try the Fractal Design Node 304. Looks a bit like a mini frigde, but it has nice clean lines and surfaces. Managed to sell the concept to my GF ;)

Merovanq
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2016 4:25 am

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Merovanq » Tue Jul 05, 2016 2:24 pm

Think that may look a little too much like a fridge for her tastes

quest_for_silence
Posts: 5275
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2007 10:12 am
Location: ITALY

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by quest_for_silence » Wed Jul 06, 2016 1:16 am

Merovanq wrote:I think I'm looking for quiet not silent from reading the definitions here.

And so? Anything is up to what you care to elaborate: "God helps those who help themselves", right?
Besides, here it's a forum where people may help you with a somehow critical approach (and not a boutique where wallets suggest what you should like).

Merovanq wrote:Those cases don't really grab me - it's going to be on display in a living room so has to be nice enough for the OH!

As said, "Attraction is an highly subjective matter"; said differently, we can't know what that "OH!" means for you: for instance, that Zotac Magnus is mainly a small box, but seemingly you like it.

boost
Posts: 661
Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:29 am
Location: de_DE

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by boost » Wed Jul 06, 2016 2:40 am

quest_for_silence wrote:
Merovanq wrote:Merovanq
SFF attractive case (ideally silver not black)
Attraction is an highly subjective matter.

With reference to how little you can go with the dimensions, you might give a look to the SPCR's Lian Li PC-Q10 review. Second best (noise wise) but 1/3rd smaller is probably the Silverstone RVZ-02 along with the Ncase M1.
The SilverStone Fortress FTZ01 is very similar to the RVZ-02 and it's available in silver.

quest_for_silence
Posts: 5275
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2007 10:12 am
Location: ITALY

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by quest_for_silence » Wed Jul 06, 2016 6:34 am

boost wrote:The SilverStone Fortress FTZ01 is very similar to the RVZ-02 and it's available in silver.

The Ncase also is silver, though not appreciated. :wink:

Abula
Posts: 3621
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Location: Guatemala

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Abula » Wed Jul 06, 2016 7:05 am

Personally if i were to build a small sffs, i would go with Ncase or DanCase (also available in silver).

Merovanq
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2016 4:25 am

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Merovanq » Sun Jul 10, 2016 8:17 am

The Dan case looks perfect - exactly the sort of thing I was looking for. Seems they're out of stock, is that a usual thing given it's a 1 man band and he then gets a few made up or is it a long lead time? I've sent an email though from the article in Linus it looks like end 2016/start 2017 which might be too long. So possibly the Silverstone Fortress.

Thanks so far.

In terms of build then, I've seen most builds seem to go for an i5 not an i7 I'm guessing this is due to heat and thus noise? I currently have an i7-4700 2.4GHz which I think was Haswell and a GeForce GTX765M.

With my requirements this usually works ok but I do get some slowing down when trying to do 2 full screens of different feed video into the monitors.

Be grateful for advice - as I say not done a silent/quiet PC build and thats more important than having the most outright performance but equally I'd like to improve in terms of what I have now but guessing as its been a couple of years that seems likely.

raysmd
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2005 8:30 pm

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by raysmd » Tue Mar 28, 2017 2:45 pm

^ so do you think the ncase would be quieter?

Would love an absolutely quiet small system

Smanci
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2015 1:18 am
Location: FIN

Re: SFF Options (Silent / Quiet but powerful)

Post by Smanci » Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:10 am

^^ Have you heard about our lord and savior Jonsbo and their cases? Quietness is pretty much up to what you put in it.

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