Spinpoints and high pitch noise at idle

Silencing hard drives, optical drives and other storage devices

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Brum Man
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Spinpoints and high pitch noise at idle

Post by Brum Man » Sun Mar 06, 2005 2:28 pm

Hello.

I have just got 2 new Samsung Spinpoints, one 80Gb and the other 160Gb. Now while these dirves are very quiet the seem to emit a very high pitched noise (both of them). I have compared the noise to my old maxor and while that alsio emits a sound at idle the sound is much lower in tone and much more un-noticable.

The noise isn't very loud, apart from when you put your ear next to them but i can still hear it and when they are screwed into the case it is even louder.

Does anyone else have this or is it a normal thing with the spinpoints?

They are JVC motors by the way.

Tibors
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Post by Tibors » Sun Mar 06, 2005 2:37 pm

Yes, this is what the whole JVC vs Nidec thing is about.
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Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Sun Mar 06, 2005 3:17 pm

Ah ok, sorry I thought it was just about the noise at seek, never really knew much about what the differences between the JVC and nidec motors were.

So does this noise annoy many people, I am seriously considering sending them back and swapping them for some other make, prob hitchi. know they are not as quiet but hopefully won't emit the horrible noise!

How good are Seagates? I know they are meant to be quiet also.

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Post by Tibors » Sun Mar 06, 2005 4:36 pm

I'm very happy with my suspended Seagate 7200.7 PATA drives. I'm less happy with the one I can't suspend. But the idle sound it makes is not high pitched, it is more a woosh. Plus I can hear the occasional "buzzing bee" form it.

I don't have one but the SATA version has louder seeks.
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jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Sun Mar 06, 2005 7:08 pm

Brum Man wrote:Ah ok, sorry I thought it was just about the noise at seek, never really knew much about what the differences between the JVC and nidec motors were.

So does this noise annoy many people, I am seriously considering sending them back and swapping them for some other make, prob hitchi. know they are not as quiet but hopefully won't emit the horrible noise!

How good are Seagates? I know they are meant to be quiet also.

Hi, looks like you and I are on the same HD search. The Hitachi I tried had more whine than the NIDEC samsung I just got and the sound blew right through the smartdrive.

Unfortunately the samsung has significant vibration and some whine so I'm not thrilled. The samsung in a suspended smartdrive (or some type of foam feet) is close to silent. I wonder how long a drive that vibrates this much can last.

Best drive I've sampled so far is the PATA WD 250G and from specs the WD 160G PATA should be even better. The 250G still slightly whined though. I never put it in the smartdrive case because I decided to go SATA but from what I recall it matched the Samsung. I don't understand why the SATA specs don't match the PATAS.

Diamond Max 10 in the mail.
Last edited by jldet5 on Sun Mar 06, 2005 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JVM
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Post by JVM » Sun Mar 06, 2005 8:42 pm

I have the WD 160 GB PATA and there is no whine. This WD1600JB is just as quiet as my previous Spinpoint SP1614N with NIDEC motor.
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jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Sun Mar 06, 2005 9:08 pm

JVM wrote:I have the WD 160 GB PATA and there is no whine. This WD1600JB is just as quiet as my previous Spinpoint SP1614N with NIDEC motor.
I edited my post as I didn't mean to include the 160 as having a whine. I only had the 250. I'm very tempted to try out the 160G in SATA but the darn specs on the WD site list it louder than the PATA. That just doesn't make sense to me.

My NIDEC Spinpoint whines about the same as the WD 250G PATA but vibrates much worse.

Of the drives I've tested so far the WD was the quietest. The Samsung loses to vibration and no local return/purchase.

meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Mon Mar 07, 2005 5:14 am

I have a couple of 160GB SATA spinpoints with JVC motors.
They do emit a high pitch whine, but thankfully it falls right across the frequency range that Acoustipack is designed to block so as soon as I close the case up there's no more problem.

:)

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Mon Mar 07, 2005 5:32 am

meglamaniac wrote:I have a couple of 160GB SATA spinpoints with JVC motors.
They do emit a high pitch whine, but thankfully it falls right across the frequency range that Acoustipack is designed to block so as soon as I close the case up there's no more problem.

:)
I can see how to do the sides, top, and bottom of the case with Acoustipack? But how does it keeps the sound from coming out the front and rear where you really can't put it on?

JVM
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Post by JVM » Mon Mar 07, 2005 6:41 am

I think the Acoustipack would help because it's like a room without carpeting and drapery compared to a room with it--you get a dampening of some high frequency sound.

Another comparison is an empty room versus a room full of furniture--ever notice how your voice will have more of an echo in the empty room?

I don't know if adding Acoustipack would entirely get rid of your whine, but it may at the very least help reduce it.

By the way, I have my WD1600JB in a Zalman ZM-2HC1.

I was told by a guy at WD that the SATA drives are noisier because they are faster. Does he really know is the next question . . .
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meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:36 am

Doesn't sound like a very realistic answer from the WD guy. As far as I know that drive spins just as fast as it's PATA counterpart doesn't it? Unless he's trying to say that the extra capacity on the SATA bus contributes to the noise, which would make me laugh...!

As for the acoustipack:
One side of the case is completely covered with the thick ridged stuff.
The other side of the case has the thinner stuff except around the HDD cage, where I used the thick stuff again.
There is also thick stuff on the bottom of the cage immediately below the drive cage, and a foam block in the 3.5" external bay immediately above the drive cage.
The only openings are at at the front of the drive cage (sound blocked by a big thick metal door) and the exhaust fan and PSU at the back (sound absorbed by the acoustipack to such an extent that no audible trace of the HD whine comes out that way).

Beleive me, I was quite surprised it worked so well as well, and I spent a few minutes with my ear up against the back, but I honestly can't hear it.

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Post by JVM » Mon Mar 07, 2005 8:00 am

What kind of case do you have?
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meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Mon Mar 07, 2005 8:05 am

It's a LianLi PC6070B, which is the reason I got Acoustipack in the first place: it's aluminium so is far from quiet without it.

JVM
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Post by JVM » Mon Mar 07, 2005 12:59 pm

That's a great-looking case! I was seriously considering that case but the aluminum and people complaining drove me away. Nice to hear you solved the noise problem. How are your temps? Have you done any other modifications with that case?
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Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Mon Mar 07, 2005 2:30 pm

Ok, i have got an RMA number and going to send them both back. Not really interested in lining the case TBH friend had some and I wasn't that impressed and I don't think I could bear coverin the inside of beautifuly modded PC70!!

So what should I get instead of the spinpoints then? Must be SATA.

Not to bothered about the seek noise of the drive as my system is nowhere near quiet anyway, have a 520W OCZ powerstram and Swiftech MCP600 that make a fair bit of noise, but I definatly don't want the high pitched whine that the spinpoints gave me. Probably don't want a Maxtor either as have jsut gone from one of those and it was VERY noisy!

Cheers for any help.

meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Mon Mar 07, 2005 2:47 pm

JVM: Don't know yet, still building it! I tested the harddrives by connecting them up and shorting the correct pins on the PSU to start it - there was no motherboard or anything. I expect temps may be higher than I would like as the intake is quite restricted, and of course the Acoustipack is a great heat insulator too :roll:
I'll cross that bridge when I come to it though.

Brum Man: Try and get some Nidec Spinpoints? Alternatively I think the general consensus is that the seagates are comparable in terms of idle noise, although their seeks are definately louder.

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Post by Bitter Jitter » Mon Mar 07, 2005 3:01 pm

My nidec spinpoint has started emitting an intermittent very high pitch noise. Its often does it 10 mins after boot up for about 2-3 minutes. It then goes away completely?
Performance seems unaffected and all my data seems fine but still any noise like that gets me worried.

Time to fire up my backup Maxtor i think (better get the ear defender out!).
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Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Mon Mar 07, 2005 3:51 pm

The thing is that there is nowhere in the UK that can guarentee Nidec motors, and I really can't be bothered t keep ordering from everywhere and then returning them if they are not the right motors,beside some places might start to get a little annoyed if I keep sending them back!!

What about Western Digital, how are they for noise etc? I take it that Hitachi's are really noisy?

I may try Seagate then, as I am not too bothered about the seek noise as it can't be any louder than my Maxtor that I put up with for two years!!

Cheers People.

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:22 pm

Brum Man wrote:The thing is that there is nowhere in the UK that can guarentee Nidec motors, and I really can't be bothered t keep ordering from everywhere and then returning them if they are not the right motors,beside some places might start to get a little annoyed if I keep sending them back!!

What about Western Digital, how are they for noise etc? I take it that Hitachi's are really noisy?

I may try Seagate then, as I am not too bothered about the seek noise as it can't be any louder than my Maxtor that I put up with for two years!!

Cheers People.
I've been returning drives sad to say. Don't get the Seagates. The seeks are huge and they whine louder than the WD 160! If you thought the Samsungs were noisey you'll be very disappointed I think.

For the sound level you seem to be going for I think your going to need the SmartDrive 2002C enclosure or better. If your samsungs don't vibrate you could try this first?

So far all drives have some whine. I'll be testing the WD SATA 160 hopefully next week and I have high hopes for it. Right now I'm waiting for the Diamond Max 10.

meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:58 am

I heard someone mention that www.kustompcs.co.uk have nidec stock in, although they are rather expensive compared to other places.
I've bought from them in the past though and they are very helpful, if you email the sales address and ask they will give you a quick response.

Good luck.

Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Tue Mar 08, 2005 9:21 am

jldet5 wrote:I've been returning drives sad to say. Don't get the Seagates. The seeks are huge and they whine louder than the WD 160! If you thought the Samsungs were noisey you'll be very disappointed I think.

For the sound level you seem to be going for I think your going to need the SmartDrive 2002C enclosure or better. If your samsungs don't vibrate you could try this first?

So far all drives have some whine. I'll be testing the WD SATA 160 hopefully next week and I have high hopes for it. Right now I'm waiting for the Diamond Max 10.
Well I don't think I am going to get the sound level I am after, and TBH the rest of my system doesn't justify me buying one of those enclosures as it really isn't THAT quiet to start with.

In fact I actually prefered my Maxtor as even though the seeks were horribly loud (don't mind as the HDD usually only seek's when using) the idle noise wast not that bad, and even thought it gave off a dull hum when idle it was not at the pitch that was in any way annoying.

Ok, I'll give the Seagates a miss. I may give a Western Digital SATA drive a go then. I am not really too keen on getting a Maxtor as the reliability of the drives seems to be appaling!

meglamaniac
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Post by meglamaniac » Tue Mar 08, 2005 2:20 pm

Glad to see no-one's suggested IBM yet.
I had a fun day at work today as one of their infamous Deathstar* drives (real name: Deskstar) which my predecessor had installed died in one of our servers, making it the third one to do so in 9 months. Much fun rebuilding RAID arrays followed :)

I've been replacing them with Seagate drives when they fail, not because of the noise level (it's not really an issue over the roar of the server room aircon!) but because of the excellent warrenty and well known reliability.
Just whatever you do, never buy an IBM drive. I've been put off them for life.


* There are reports on the net, including photos of disected failed drives, that some of these drives self destruct so violently the glue inside melts and the drive platters get stripped bare.

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Tue Mar 08, 2005 2:33 pm

meglamaniac wrote:Glad to see no-one's suggested IBM yet.
I had a fun day at work today as one of their infamous Deathstar* drives (real name: Deskstar) which my predecessor had installed died in one of our servers, making it the third one to do so in 9 months. Much fun rebuilding RAID arrays followed :)

I've been replacing them with Seagate drives when they fail, not because of the noise level (it's not really an issue over the roar of the server room aircon!) but because of the excellent warrenty and well known reliability.
Just whatever you do, never buy an IBM drive. I've been put off them for life.


* There are reports on the net, including photos of disected failed drives, that some of these drives self destruct so violently the glue inside melts and the drive platters get stripped bare.

Which is now Hitachi, right? Also, I'll add that the IBM Thinkpads at work are losing their HDs left and right.

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Tue Mar 08, 2005 2:36 pm

Brum Man wrote:
jldet5 wrote:I've been returning drives sad to say. Don't get the Seagates. The seeks are huge and they whine louder than the WD 160! If you thought the Samsungs were noisey you'll be very disappointed I think.

For the sound level you seem to be going for I think your going to need the SmartDrive 2002C enclosure or better. If your samsungs don't vibrate you could try this first?

So far all drives have some whine. I'll be testing the WD SATA 160 hopefully next week and I have high hopes for it. Right now I'm waiting for the Diamond Max 10.
Well I don't think I am going to get the sound level I am after, and TBH the rest of my system doesn't justify me buying one of those enclosures as it really isn't THAT quiet to start with.

In fact I actually prefered my Maxtor as even though the seeks were horribly loud (don't mind as the HDD usually only seek's when using) the idle noise wast not that bad, and even thought it gave off a dull hum when idle it was not at the pitch that was in any way annoying.

Ok, I'll give the Seagates a miss. I may give a Western Digital SATA drive a go then. I am not really too keen on getting a Maxtor as the reliability of the drives seems to be appaling!
If you go for the WD, I belive you need a black / dark top drive as those are the FDBs to include the SATAs. The PATA I had was a October 2004 build. I'll be scoping them out at Best Buy soon.

Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Tue Mar 08, 2005 2:54 pm

jldet5 wrote:If you go for the WD, I belive you need a black / dark top drive as those are the FDBs to include the SATAs. The PATA I had was a October 2004 build. I'll be scoping them out at Best Buy soon.
I'm sorry, I don't completely understand this post (sorry for being a bit retarded!)

What do you mean that I need a black top as those drives are FDB's to include SATA's??

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:03 pm

Brum Man wrote:
jldet5 wrote:If you go for the WD, I belive you need a black / dark top drive as those are the FDBs to include the SATAs. The PATA I had was a October 2004 build. I'll be scoping them out at Best Buy soon.
I'm sorry, I don't completely understand this post (sorry for being a bit retarded!)

What do you mean that I need a black top as those drives are FDB's to include SATA's??

Color of the drive. As opposed to standard silver. From what I read, and the drive I had in hand, the black / darker colored drives are the FDB drives. FDBs may be earlier than October 2004 but I would stick with that or a later build date. I'm assuming you can get these locally?

Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:08 pm

jldet5 wrote:Color of the drive. As opposed to standard silver. From what I read, and the drive I had in hand, the black / darker colored drives are the FDB drives. FDBs may be earlier than October 2004 but I would stick with that or a later build date. I'm assuming you can get these locally?
FDB's? Sorry, what is that? How do you mean you assume I can get these locally? I will be orering online, prob from overclockers.co.uk or overclock.co.uk.

Where do you get yours from?

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:17 pm

Brum Man wrote:
jldet5 wrote:Color of the drive. As opposed to standard silver. From what I read, and the drive I had in hand, the black / darker colored drives are the FDB drives. FDBs may be earlier than October 2004 but I would stick with that or a later build date. I'm assuming you can get these locally?
FDB's? Sorry, what is that? How do you mean you assume I can get these locally? I will be orering online, prob from overclockers.co.uk or overclock.co.uk.

Where do you get yours from?
Fluid Bearings (less whine) as opposed to ball bearing. I'm getting mine from Best Buy for easy return. I have not verified the darker colored top at Best Buy yet but for sure you want a late build date!

jldet5
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Post by jldet5 » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:25 pm

I'm not seeing in the specs that the SATAs are FDB but if the PATA specs say so then you have to wonder if the SATA pages are correct. Thats why I'm getting them locally cause its not real clear.

Brum Man
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Post by Brum Man » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:28 pm

Oh ok, sorry for being not too bright! So what does the full acronym mean?

I take you are on America (just done a search for best buy and see it's an american e-tailor), and that is why you were asking if I can get these locally ie England, ah it's all falling into place! :)

I have no idea TBH what build they are sending etc, just that they are JD, but I spose all of them are labelled as that but they just change the build slightly at some point?

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