Trying to decide how to shut my rig up!

Discussion in 'Silent PC's' started by guddler, Mar 15, 2009.

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  1. guddler

    guddler Kustomer

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    Sorry for the long post!

    Hey all, wow, apparently I last logged in on 7th September 2005 - has it really been that long? I feel embarrased now :D

    Anyway, I hadn't used PC's for ages since I'm now a mac man but late last year I built a rig solely for gaming. I picked components based on performance vs. price, vs. noise, as I guess most people reading this section of the forum would. Spec is as follows:

    CASE: Antec Sonata III
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
    Cooler: Arctice Cooler Pro 7
    Mobo: Asrock Penryn SLI1600
    GOU: Inno3D 9800GT Passive
    RAM: 4GB Corsair something or other (!)
    HDD: WD5000AAKS

    That's all the relevent stuff I think.

    Immediately I got it I put it together and found the GPU would go over 100C just playing World Of Warcraft so I immediately had to add a second fan to the front of the case. I added a Noctua NF-P12 iirc. That sorted that problem. And I was so-so happy for quite some months

    Just recently I started playing other games (UT3, Runes Of Magic) and the GPU temps again started to go over 100C. While I was out at the weekend I spotted a Zalman VF-900 in PCWorld of all places for £20 so I ripped the passive rubbish off of the GPU and I'm happy to report that UT3 has gone from 80/90, even 100C down to 50 or 60 and WoW is now down at 45 to 50. Result on that score :)

    Now then. I have tinitus, and as such I'm very, very fussy about noise. Most people would call my setup very quiet, but it can be as quiet as it likes, if it's a particular kind of noise I won't hear it, and conversely, another particular noise might annoy the pants off me.

    And here's my problem. The Sonata 3 case wasn't overly cheap (£100 or so?) and it's meant to be "silent". I'll admit, it doesn't make too much noise, but the noise it does make is really starting to grate on my nerves! It really sounds hollow and cheap. But the other source of noise is the cpu. It turns out RoM is really thrashing the cpu, I guess because it's beta, and the Artic 7 sounds really, really nasty when it starts belting out, again, I think because of the really hollow sounding case.

    So I'm looking for a case replacement I think. Plus probably a CPU colloer replacement. As a side note I'm also replacing the motherboard, but that's for entirely other reasons.

    Today I've looked at the Zalman GT-1000, err, pretty much because it's drop dead gorgeous, and the ThermalTake Xaser VI VG4000BNS because I picked up PCZone earlier today and they happened to have a mini case review and they happened to rave about it.

    Now then, I don't mind spending several hundred on a decent case, IF, it solves my problem once and for all. But I have concerns...

    With the Zalman GT-1000 I read reviews and they criticise the noise of the fans. Not being funny but after spending somewhere in the region of £250 on a case I certainly wouldn't expect to be having to replace the fans for quieter ones.

    With the Thermaltake, all seems to be recommended well and everone says it's quiet, but again it has 3 fans, so I'm a little concerned. I have to say, being a full tower it's flippin' huge too! I don't plan on moving it, and it is again, gorgeuos, but still, it's huge!

    Has anyone got any thoughts on this? Any real life experiences of the above cases?, any other suggestions? Maybe anyone (or company) I could pick up the phone and talk to?

    I'm in the south west of the UK so my options are kind of limited when it comes to visiting specialist retailers, especially Kustom PC's - Ayr's kind of a long way :eek:

    Here's hoping someone can offer up some enlightenment.

    Martin.
     
  2. swordsman045

    swordsman045 Kustomer

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    so the loud noise made by the fans annoys you? why not try using fan controllers so you can minimize it a bit?
     
  3. saltynay

    saltynay Eats, Drinks, Sleeps Kustom

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    If it will fit in the case thermaltake 120 extreme with some tuniq tx2 paste and a noctua fan and you will be silent. As the Q6600 is one of the hotter quads I wouldn't run it passive so clip on one fan (needed to be bought seperately).

    Case wise I would get a full tower lian li like the A70A and some soundproofing foam and silence it yourself.
     
  4. guddler

    guddler Kustomer

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    Thanks for the replies :)

    Would one of those cpu coolers really be much different to the Artic 7 Pro? It looks very similar, albeit a bit larger...

    As far as controlling the speed of the existing fans, there isn't much I can do really. Both of the case fans are already on their lowest setting (3 settings), I think about 900rpm, but don't quote me on that, and the CPU fan is controlled by the motherboard so it's going up and down on demand. I realise I could put the fans on their maximum settings, then add a fanmate or something but it's not really going to get much lower in terms of speed I don't think?

    I guess before I get carried away I could remove the Arctic 7 and redo the thermal paste just in case something's up with the existing installation.

    I need to look into the case more but will certainly look into the Lian Li
     
  5. razer121

    razer121 learning grammar :)

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    i personaly dont think you would see much difference with the thermaltake 120 extreme, i mean saltynay is right, it probs is better the the freezer 7 but i own the freezer 7 and it does a grand job and makes no noise, i can hear my corsiar psu over it....(ye im real sensitive to sound lol) has vibration poped into your head?? because this seems to be a major issue im having aswell :)
     
  6. guddler

    guddler Kustomer

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    I'm beginning to wander! I'm nearly done with work for the day so I may strip this thing back down this evening and see what's going on. Certainly my experience with the Artic 7 doesn't seem to tie up with nearly everyone else's! I see it recommended a LOT and most, like yourself suggest it's quiet.

    Maybe it is a vibration issue? Something is making me feel like the case sounds like a very lightweight, hollow, cheap and nasty thing, which I can see (and feel!) that it's not. Whatever it is, it's certainly in relation to the CPU temp. / fan speed though so I'll start there and report back.
     
  7. saltynay

    saltynay Eats, Drinks, Sleeps Kustom

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    Massive difference razer you would see approx a 8 degree drop you don't realise just how big the ultra 120 extreme is. The AF7 is an excellent cooler and very well priced however its also quite small in comparison and the fan isn't the quietest available whilst noctua fans are up the top end of the market. Tuniq tx2 thermal paste is better then arctic silver 5, I don't reccomend reseating your AF7 as thermal paste takes time to cure so will raise the temp of your cpu and thus make it more probable the fan will go to higher speeds.

    You also need to think about airflow through your case as you may find you are getting bad flow causing the fans to struggle a little bit more causing them to vibrate. My pc is silent and I have very good hearing the only thing that makes a noise on my pc is the optical drives and I have to increase graphics cards fan speeds when gaming ofcourse.
     
  8. guddler

    guddler Kustomer

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    Ok, so I haven't actually done anything as such this evening but I've tried to investigate where the problem areas lay, and actually, it's pretty much what has already been said, so no big surprises!

    First of all, I pulled the machine up onto the desk and ran it with the side off to see what was making the noise and what wasn't. To my big surprise, the noisiest fan in the entire box is the 120mm Noctua in the front, but I seem to remember not being able to squeeze any rubber mountings or dampeners in there so it's bolted direct to the case. I remember, I did try! So that's surprise no.1 Despite me thinking the opposite, at idle, the Antec fan on the rear and the Artic 7 fan are basically inaudible. Well, let's say, certainly acceptable.

    But. It is immediately apparent that the case side panel is acting like a huge amplifier. I could sit next to it quite happily all day with the side off but put the side on and it's a different story. So much for the Sonata being a quiet case, however it's not a surprise. It's not vibrating, dampening it with your hand makes no difference at all, but I think it's doing something! Is the term perhaps that it's resonating? I honestly don't know how to describe what I think it's doing :)

    Second area is the CPU. I'll post some screen grabs and whatnot tomorrow but I was basically getting some very weird readings using SpeedFan that I don't desperately understand. My very brief understanding is that the general "cpu" reading (is that TP?) should be in the region of 5C higher than the cores and that the core readings, if calibrated ought to be pretty similar. I was seeing core readings at idle of low 30's and the CPU about 40ish, so seems okay. I then played a game for a bit, the Arctic 7 started to sound like a tornado as the CPU temp went to around 54C, the cores didn't go beyond 40 though. Odd thing though is that after 10 - 15 minutes of idle (the phone rang) the cores had all dropped but the main cpu was still up at 51.

    I went into the bios and noticed that I'd set the motherboard monitoring very agressively, setting a target fan speed of 1 (9 - fastest) and a target cpu temp of 50. I'm guessing this is what is causing the tornado effect when we go above 50. I left the fan speed alone but raised the target temp to 58 and then played some UT3.

    This seems to have made a huge difference. I'm using Riva Tuner to get an in-game temperature reading for the gpu but i don't know if it's possible to add cpu temp to that, but certainly the fan no longer really ramps up so i can only assume the temperature isn't reaching 58C and things are staying quieter.

    So if people don't mind looking, I think I need to post a pic of the inside of the case to make sure it's ok on airflow and stuff and then maybe buy some of this sound proofing for the side panels?
    http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_2050.html

    Or perhaps come to the conclusion that maybe a different case is in order? I'm no longer quite so quick to jump to that conclusion now though!

    Then I think I need to run with the cpu a bit longer to see if it needs attention or not. Unless anyone thinks it doesn't sound right?
     
  9. guddler

    guddler Kustomer

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    I sussed out how to get RivaTuner to display my CPU temps while in game so I can keep an eye on things now. Straight away it looks like I could indeed add some extra cooling capacity because of my desire for quiet but I'll see how it goes :)
     
  10. asanka000

    asanka000 Banned

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    water cooling systems decrease the noise
     
  11. bobwas4

    bobwas4 New Member

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    add some deltas :) just playing ;) scythes are sposed to be silent n good cfm :)
     
  12. Koolpc

    Koolpc Not From Earth

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    Fill it full of cement. Job done!
     
  13. gamerdude1989

    gamerdude1989 Banned

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    keep the rig powered off. Easy
     
  14. silve225

    silve225 Super Kustomer

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    turn up the game volume and you won't hear the computer
     
  15. latency

    latency Existentialist

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    ummm... 15-03-2009, 23:26
     
  16. gamerdude1989

    gamerdude1989 Banned

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    so if this is such an old post, how comes, and who dragged it back up??
     
  17. Cosmo_1847

    Cosmo_1847 Kiss of death

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    Bobwas4, please read the date of the previous post before replying. There is no point adding to a concluded thread.
     
  18. latency

    latency Existentialist

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    Because Bobwas4 necroposted it like Michael Jackson performing Thriller at the London 2012 Olympics.

    I'm slightly bitter because I spent about ten minutes reading the OP before I realised it was nearly three years old XD