By Thomas Hawthorn Part 1. Airflow and air cooling. Quiet PC Guide Part 1. Airflow and air cooling. At Kustom PCs we are regularly asked to build quiet systems, or for help in selecting parts to make one. Computer components change so fast these days, so for that reason I thought I would make a more general article describing the various factors to take into account when choosing components for a quiet PC. The main factor in quiet computing is going to be heat. You can have a very quiet computer with nearly no fans that will only run for a few minutes before overheating, which is of no use. Quiet fact: Generally, quiet systems will run slightly warmer than a well cooled but noisy computer. Building a quiet system. Changing the fans in your computer is an easy way to reduce the overall noise in your system. In this first part of the guide we will cover the main areas that need air cooling, and how to accomplish this quietly. Most computers have the following fans: 1. CPU Heatsink and fan. You need a heatsink to cool your CPU, and a fan on that in order to take the heat away. 2. Graphics card fan. GPUs can get much hotter than a CPU, and yet most manufacturers ship them with small, loud, fast fans. However to ATI and Nvidia’s credit recently, their fans are now temperature controlled. (We’ll talk later about graphics cards, what to do with them, or what to select if making a new computer). 3. PSU fan. The Power Supply Unit has to step down 230v to 12v and below. Because of the transformers it also generates heat, and has heatsinks and fans to disperse this heat. 4. Case fans. The size and position of these depends entirely on your case, but generally there will be at least one at the front bringing in cool air, and/or one at the back exhausting air.