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My very silent build. My very first post.

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Hello, I am TickMagnet...you may call me Tick. This is my first post.

After many years of Frankenboxes built of used and scrounged parts I finally bit the bullet and bought the quietest and best of everything I could.
I am happy to say it has been running for over a year as quiet as a dead mouse.

This is my build, parts were picked based almost solely based on how quiet they were, to be more clear I picked parts based on how annoying the parts of my last three computers were.

First the most annoying part, power supply. The problem with a silent build is everything has to be quiet. you can't cheap out on one part because you know no matter how good the rest is all you will notice is that squeaky fan, or clicking hard drive. All you do by making everything quieter is make it stand out more. After a LOT of reading I got the 460 Watt X series Fanless 80+ gold Modular Power Supply created by the wonderfully anal people at Seasonic.
I did read some people have had it develop a annoying electrical hum or buzz but so far mine has not...quite honestly it makes no noise at all.
It costs more than most third world families make in a year but it does come in a velvet bag.

Second annoying part, Hard drive. No brainer here. Got a 256 gig SSD Crucial M4.

Motherboard, I was torn here. Use onboard graphics and avoid the video card? Or use a fanless video card perhaps?

I decided to take a bit of a risk here. I got the ASUS P8P67-M. It required a video card so I got an EVGA GeForce GT 520 with 2048 MB DDR3 in it. This card does have a small fan but I would swap it out for a fanless one later if needed. The board itself having no fans or anything makes no noise. ASUS also says that their capacitors are "solid" so they will last longer and tend not to make electrical noise. Not sure if it was EMF or something only dogs and cats can hear but it sounded good to me.

As it turned out the EVGA card was quite silent even after a few months of collecting dust. It even ran for weeks on end 24/7 with no noise.(Minecraft server duty for a while)

RAM Well I had 4 slots, soooo... 4 sticks! 16 GIGs in total of Kingston HyperX DDR3 1600. I'll be honest with you here. It was on sale and it was blue so it looked pretty in the ASUS board. ASUS has a nice anodized blue color scheme on it. KHX1600C9D3K2/8GX Besides, how else can I watch five thousand blocks of TNT go off in Minecraft? One click in the Bios and they all popped from 1333 to 1600. Don't know why but for some reason they came in sleeping.

Problem... Guess what comes with a fan? CPU.
So the stock cooler would never feel the nipple tightening thrill of AC current, I was damn sure of that!
At first I was dead set against any fans, fans were my enemy....fans are evil. I would go on about how much I despise fans here. I could rant for several pages about how much I would rather try to correct the shape of my own eyes using only paper cuts than put another fan in the box, but life being what it is and my life being a series of compromises I caved....one more fan in the box.

BUT NOT THE STOCK FAN!

My quest for fanlessnissity was steering me towards the THERMALRIGHT HR-02 that boasted no fans at all but...it needs many fans mounted in the case for "Airflow" to me that sounded like an unpowered glider that needed a plane to tow it around.
So following the tried and true method of throwing money at my problems I bought the Noctua NH-C12P SE14 CPU Cooler. Its a bit of a highbred version somewhere between fanless giant heatsink and screaming stock CPU fan. It has one huge fan on it, it's a quiet fan, but not as quiet as the Noctua NF-S12B ULN 120mm Fan which is actually rated at a noise level that is below the level that humans can hear!

Since I had cooling all wrapped up in a quiet little overkill package I opted for the Intel i52500....soon abandoned for the i52500K which would let me risk the magic blue smoke of overclocking when my warranty ran out (Wheeee!!).

This didn't leave me a lot of case options, I wanted stupid airflow, I wanted USB 3.0, I wanted good looks, I needed a bottom mount for the fanless power supply or I was gonna end up with a cooked PSU. I needed it roomy enough to hide the severed hand I kept as a souvenir when I ran over that homeless guy while tripping balls on shrooms. I finally zeroed in on the RAIDER case made by Bitfenix. Mesh body, black, built in screens to trap dust, rubberized metal case edges and a wicked chrome logo on the front. It looks like the cross between an alien head and a robot and a German sex toy but with cleaner lines.

One drawback,... fans, Oh God! so many FANS! But it has a built in fan controller in it...I gave it a shot...Buzzzzzzzzzzz!

Wheeee!!! to the bank machine!

$$$$$$ Buy More Noctua NF-S12B ULN 120mm Fans! $$$$$

And that was my initial setup, if I do say so myself I hit it bang on (as far as noise goes)! It's so quiet I have to look at it to see if it's on. The video card turned out to be quite a bottleneck to the system. Compared to what it could do it was severely limited by such an under-powered card. Computers are like strippers, if you want her to dance faster THROW MONEY!!

I bought the EVGA GEFORCE GTX 650 Ti Superclocked edition with 2 Gigs GDDR5 memory lovingly stitched into its guts! And replaced the EVGA GT 520 that was more suited to an Intel i3XXX.

So now I have this foolishly overpowered well matched 64bit dual drive Linux/Windows, silent, sexy machine hooked up to a 42 inch LCD and all I use it for is playing minecraft and posting on newsgroups.

And I couldn't be happier.
post #2 of 4
congrats on the build, and welcome to OCN.
Quite a fun and awesome read biggrin.gif
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thank you, I've found it's best to open a new door with your forehead and a loud scream. Works great in job interviews. After the wife is up I'll rip off the covers and take a few pics for you guys. Nice to be here!smile.gif
post #4 of 4
I find that the best way to open new doors is with a battering ram myself. biggrin.gif
I like passively cooled systems.
I find trashed laptops are easier to silence (see ryuu in my sig.)
Step 1: Un laptop it.
Step 2: Now that you have most of the shell off, remove CPU cooler.
Step 3: attach a socket 939/AM2/AM2+/AM3/AM3+ or 423/478/775 CPU heat spreader on to CPU
Step 4: Attach CPU cooler to CPU.
Step 5: If your chipset was cooled by the stock cooler, use some hardware store springs to push a reasonable cooler onto the chip set and keep it there (springs since laptops tend to go without mounting hardware for the chip set cooler)
Step 6: Get a SSD.
 
Draco Volans II
(11 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Phenom II x4 830 @4Ghz core /2.6Ghz NB Gigabyte MA790X-UD4P EVGA 970 2x4GB Ebay DDR2 at DDR762 5-5-5-15 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate 500 GB 7200.12 (near dead) Hiachi Coolspin 2 TB (storage) (near dead) RAID0 2x Westren digital Caviar Blu... OCZ arc 100 240 GB SSD 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
Xiggy dark knight Windows 7 Ultimate x64 23" ASUS VH236H 1080p QINX QX2710LED 1440p 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Kinesis advantage  XFX TS550 Antec 900 Razer deathadder 
Other
USB 3.0 PCIe card 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-3210M HM77  GT 640LE  4GB soldered+ 8GB SO-DIMM 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 EVO Slot loading Stock W7 x64 
MonitorKeyboardPower
1600x900 13.3" LCD Backlit 4200 mAh internal and 4800 mAh extended battery. 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Turion ML-40 with heatspreader attached HP laptop socket 754 motherboard with RS480M ch... IGP that I don't use 512 mb ddr 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
4 GB patriot USB 2.0 flash drive None, don't need it. Scythe Ninja Mounted with zip ties.  Pfsense 2.0.2 nanobsd 
OtherOtherOther
gigabit USB NIC Atheros WLAN NIC Many zip ties. 
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Draco Volans II
(11 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Phenom II x4 830 @4Ghz core /2.6Ghz NB Gigabyte MA790X-UD4P EVGA 970 2x4GB Ebay DDR2 at DDR762 5-5-5-15 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate 500 GB 7200.12 (near dead) Hiachi Coolspin 2 TB (storage) (near dead) RAID0 2x Westren digital Caviar Blu... OCZ arc 100 240 GB SSD 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
Xiggy dark knight Windows 7 Ultimate x64 23" ASUS VH236H 1080p QINX QX2710LED 1440p 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Kinesis advantage  XFX TS550 Antec 900 Razer deathadder 
Other
USB 3.0 PCIe card 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-3210M HM77  GT 640LE  4GB soldered+ 8GB SO-DIMM 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 EVO Slot loading Stock W7 x64 
MonitorKeyboardPower
1600x900 13.3" LCD Backlit 4200 mAh internal and 4800 mAh extended battery. 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Turion ML-40 with heatspreader attached HP laptop socket 754 motherboard with RS480M ch... IGP that I don't use 512 mb ddr 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
4 GB patriot USB 2.0 flash drive None, don't need it. Scythe Ninja Mounted with zip ties.  Pfsense 2.0.2 nanobsd 
OtherOtherOther
gigabit USB NIC Atheros WLAN NIC Many zip ties. 
  hide details  
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