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The Quiet PC Silencing your PC


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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 14th December, 2012, 08:06 PM
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Silent computer (as in 0dB)

I'm just looking at how feasible it would be to build a totally silent PC. No noise at all, zero decibels.

A "proper" computer with some serious processing power.

This fanless case looks good:
CS-70 Fanless Computer Case

Combined with a fanless CPU cooler, fanless PSU, and SSD drives it could be completely noise free.

Anyone seen anything else that could work?
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Old 14th December, 2012, 08:39 PM
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My first response would be

Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok
I'm just looking at how feasible it would be to build a totally silent PC. No noise at all, zero decibels.
and

Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok
A "proper" computer with some serious processing power.
are mutually exclusive, unless you are willing to make some concessions on your definitiion of 'serious processing power'.
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Old 14th December, 2012, 08:39 PM
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My first response would be

Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok
I'm just looking at how feasible it would be to build a totally silent PC. No noise at all, zero decibels.
and

Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok
A "proper" computer with some serious processing power.
are mutually exclusive, unless you are willing to make some concessions on your definitiion of 'serious processing power'.
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Old 14th December, 2012, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmo View Post
My first response would be



and



are mutually exclusive, unless you are willing to make some concessions on your definition of 'serious processing power'.
Sorry pal, I don't care who you are, ya only get ONE first response!
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Old 14th December, 2012, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok View Post
I'm just looking at how feasible it would be to build a totally silent PC. No noise at all, zero decibels.

A "proper" computer with some serious processing power.

This fanless case looks good:
CS-70 Fanless Computer Case

Combined with a fanless CPU cooler, fanless PSU, and SSD drives it could be completely noise free.

Anyone seen anything else that could work?
Gizmo outlined the difficulty.

Gizmo outlined the difficulty.


If you want power, you need cooling and there's no running away from that.

But! I think your in better shape to do this than in the past.

Yesterday while installing a game, I turned off Folding at Home, usually I never turn it off for anything FAH is amazingly well behaved!

But I wanted to see how well my "Adaptable" CPU handled things.

Fun to watch really. All 4 cores stayed above the stock speed of 3.4 and then ramped constantly between 4.6 and 4.8 as needed.

Once the install completed it dropped down to 1.6 Ghz

Most modern motherboards now will run case fan speed on a as needed bases.


I would use case insulation everywhere I could, flat sheets you can cut to fit. But I just can't see a fan-less CPU producing a power box... unless we water cooled.

We've used water cooling to max our chips in the past. But I've never run stock to see what that might be like noise wise...

For power you have to move air out of the box or your dead...

So I'd say you can get a lot closer to what you want than you could have say three years ago... but in the end I think you will either be lacking in power or a touch on the noisy side.
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Old 14th December, 2012, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmo View Post
My first response would be



and



are mutually exclusive, unless you are willing to make some concessions on your definitiion of 'serious processing power'.
Not really.

This CPU cooler is silent and good for TDP of 95W.

So, would cool a quad-core running at ~4GHz.

There's this grapahics card:
ATI Fanless HD7750 Ultimate 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E HDMI

It's fine for everything, but a bit lacking for the most demanding games.

It would be possible to build a silent cooler suitable for a more powerful card. But finding one, ready made is another question.
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Old 14th December, 2012, 09:34 PM
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This CPU cooler:
Nofan CR-95C IcePipe Fanless CPU Coolers

Missed the link.
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Old 15th December, 2012, 12:34 PM
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You probably know this site already, but silentpcreview.com is my place for finding out stuff like this. Mike has a proper anechoic chamber and tests gear all the time. I've bought gear from him a number of times, too. He keeps a listing of testing samples and such that he has for sale as well.

You might start by taking a look at this page for complete build guides:

Silent PC Build Guides | silentpcreview.com

and this one for cases:

Silent PC Cases | silentpcreview.com
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Old 15th December, 2012, 03:04 PM
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Some good stuff on there.

One thing it is difficult to find is a large tower case specifically designed for passive cooling. Most cases are just generic fan cases with the fans removed.

I would have thought a case designed on the same principle as a solar chimney could work well.

Solar chimney - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

That's the idea, but no need to use the sun, the components provide the heat, and an underground thermal exchange would be a bit unrealistic.

So, essentially a case which is quite similar to a small wood burning stove.

It could draw air in from the bottom, and have some kind of short chimney on the top.

Using the chimney effect to get air moving would help keep things like the motherboard cooled, and stop pockets of warm air being trapped in corners etc.
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Old 15th December, 2012, 05:53 PM
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So this is more than a passing fancy with you Danrok.

Well I've never heard anyone complain about silence in computing...so there are bound to be people who are dedicated to the quite.

If you go forward with this please keep us posted!!
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Old 15th December, 2012, 09:00 PM
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In the past, I've always ended up abandoning the idea because I'd end up with a crap PC.

But it seems plausible now, and true silence should be possible thanks to SSDs.
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Old 16th December, 2012, 01:18 AM
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Mine are in fact the very voice of silence, the don't even vibrate...":O}
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Old 16th December, 2012, 01:13 PM
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Red face

That would be so uncool! Who the hell wants a computer that makes no noise! I love my laptop's sound and when I had the Antec beast I loved the sound it was making (well maybe a little less the Raptor hdd lol) but hey I love the sound they are making, hell no thank you!
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Old 16th December, 2012, 10:45 PM
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Some one who loves fast computers for the Music files they play?
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Old 17th December, 2012, 10:39 AM
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel ~ View Post
Some one who loves fast computers for the Music files they play?
LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL good one Dan! Anyway if one has a decent smartphone and good headphones he might listen to music next to a waterfall and not give a xxxx
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Old 17th December, 2012, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danrok View Post
I would have thought a case designed on the same principle as a solar chimney could work well.
My concern on this would be that trying to utilise the stack effect will result in airspeeds that are too low. You can find a formula that describes the stack efffct, as well as calculators online such as Air Flow and Velocities due to Natural Draft

If you go for a passive heatsink, then you're probably looking more at around the 6.4 W/m^2*K mark. So a heatsink that's 50cm x 71cm with fins that are 5mm thick by 10cm high can dissipate around 500W.
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Old 17th December, 2012, 03:27 PM
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Talking

But then there is nothing better than:

Highest Blocking Moldable Ear Plugs
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Old 17th December, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Hmmm I wonder if I'll pass 8000 by Christmas!
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Old 17th December, 2012, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisbard View Post
But then there is nothing better than:

Highest Blocking Moldable Ear Plugs
I have a box full of them, but not so useful when watching movies.
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