A fine-tuned SLK3000B (photos and instructions)

Show off your quiet rig.

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hyperq
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Location: Ithaca, New York, USA

A fine-tuned SLK3000B (photos and instructions)

Post by hyperq » Mon Sep 12, 2005 8:45 am

I learned so much from SPCR and I want to thank everyone who contributed valuable information here that made SPCR such a nice place to hang out. After months of studying and updating, my PC has finally reached a level of quietness I am happy with. It is about one meter away from where I sit, and I cannot hear it.

I am now documenting everything I did. Hopefully newbies will find this article helpful.

Here is an overview shot. The cables seem a bit untidy right now, I will get to that soon.
Image


Here are the normal temperatures and fan speeds when CPU is at idle.
Image



======== Case =================
Antec SLK3000B
Why:
- Cheap. ($46 on amazon.com)
- I can choose my own PSU.
- Hard drive cage can be easily suspended.

Mod: I cut out the fan grills front and back with Wiss tin snips. Then I filed the edges with mill files.
Advantage: It reduces wind noise caused by air turbulence and also increases air flow.

Image
Instructions: Modding & Cutting with Tin Snips
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=2307


Nexus 120mm & Antec Tri-cool fan
Why:
- They are both quiet at around 6v.
- Can be connected together and controlled by one Fan Mate II
Image
Advantage: They spin at roughly the same rpm, thus the same cfm. So the air pressure is balanced. Imbalanced air pressure may cause the Seasonic S12-430 to dump heat inside the case. Controlling both fans with one Fan Mate prevents that from happening.



Image
Instructions: Quick & easy cage suspension system
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=25350



Image
Instructions: Vinyl Floor Tiles for Case Damping
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=25043



======== Power Supply =================
If you are buying a PSU but unsure about the wattage you need, try this wattage calculator.

http://www.jscustompcs.com/power_supply/

The only flaw I noticed is that it rates all Athlon64 CPUs at 89W. There is no option for the new 90nm Athlon64 CPUs that are rated at 67W. Besides this, it is a nifty little program.

I bought a Seasonic S12-430
Why:
- Quiet. Its fan seems to always spin around 750-780 rpm.
- Future proof: has the 8-pin connector for dual CPU motherboards, and it is 430w.
- Stable voltages
- Runs cool

Click the link below to see why S12-430 is great.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article28-page6.html

Image
Power Supply is mounted with the hard drive screws and grommets, and it is cushioned with rubber padding underneath.



======= CPU ==================
Athlon 64 3000+
Why:
- Rated at 67watt. High performance to wattage ratio
- High performance to price ratio
- Runs cool, idles at 32C with Zalman 7000


Zalman 7000
Why:
- Great cooling performance
- Quiet 92mm fan at low rpm

I enabled Cool’n’Quiet in BIOS.
Image


I undervolted CPU from 1.4v to 1.1v before.
Image
The idle temperature dropped a few degrees. But I am happy with the idle temp at 1.4v, which is about 30C-32C. So the CPU is currently at the default 1.4v.


====== Hard Drive ==================
Seagate Barracuda 7200.8

Mod: Quick & easy cage suspension system
Image
Instructions: EZ suspension in SLK3000B
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=25350



====== DVD Burner ===================
Samsung TS-H552B @ TS10

It is fairly quiet, and it supports bitsetting too with firmware TS10.



======= Motherboard ==================
Chaintech VNF4 Ultra

Zalman NB47J
Why:
- Stock chipset fan is noisy

Image




Panaflo 80L1A
Why:
- It is silent at 7v.
Image
Image
Right now, the Panaflo 80L is connected to a 7v fan port. If you are not an overclocker, this 7v setup is quiet and effective. If you are an overclocker, click the link below and go to section 2, which is titled "Cooling NB47J with SpeedFan 4.25".

3000+ @ 1.1v & Cooling NB47J with SpeedFan 4.25
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=24846




====== Video Card ===================
Chaintech 6600GT
Why:
- high performance to price ratio
- will take a while to obsolete this one

Zalman VF700
Why:
- Great cooling performance
- Quiet 80mm fan at low rpm

SpeedFan 4.25
Why:
- Can automatically change fan speeds when temperature changes.
- Can monitor temperatures for CPU, GPU, motherboard, harddrive
- Can monitor fan speeds
- Can warn you if temp or fan speed is out of range


Everytime GPU temp goes above 43, the fan on VF700 automatically ramps up. When the temp drops, the fan slows down. No more manual work. This is magic. I love it.
Image
Instructions: GPU fan in Auto-Pilot Mode
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=25023
Last edited by hyperq on Wed Sep 14, 2005 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

mongobilly
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Post by mongobilly » Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:04 am

I wonder how you can suspend the HD cage. In my SLK3700, it fills all space from the bottom holder to the top mounting brackets, making it seemingly impossible to suspend it? Did you cut something out?

nici
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Post by nici » Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:09 am

You can do it two ways, either put it sideways or cur out the bottom mount(just drill out the pop-rivets)

hyperq
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Location: Ithaca, New York, USA

Post by hyperq » Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:16 am

Antec SLK3000B is different from SLK3700. SLK3000B has a removable hard drive cage. No drilling or cutting is needed to suspend the cage. All you need are some elastics and paper clips.

mprezd
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Post by mprezd » Tue Sep 20, 2005 1:41 pm

Just out of interest, have you had any problems with the paper clips (bending etc)

I can't find the plastic clamps they use in aphonos' method - so I thought I may give this a go instead. I assume you still used the grommets when attaching the hard disks to the cage?

mprezd
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Post by mprezd » Tue Sep 20, 2005 1:45 pm

One other query, if you remove the floppy drive cage as well, would the suspension hang above the 120mm fan at the front? reason I ask is I had considered attaching another fan to the drive cage and having it such air straight off the cage.

I guess it could also be done if it was suspending in line with the other 120mm - i just also thought it may increase airflow through the case.

Cheers

hyperq
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Location: Ithaca, New York, USA

Post by hyperq » Tue Sep 20, 2005 2:31 pm

Just out of interest, have you had any problems with the paper clips (bending etc)

I can't find the plastic clamps they use in aphonos' method - so I thought I may give this a go instead. I assume you still used the grommets when attaching the hard disks to the cage?
I have two hard drives in the cage and the paperclips show no sign of bending. They seem to be strong enough for three drives (perhaps even four?). Yes, I also use the rubber grommets. I am so happy with the silence achieved with this setup. Suspension is the best, maybe the only, way to completely kill the hard drive noise.
One other query, if you remove the floppy drive cage as well, would the suspension hang above the 120mm fan at the front? reason I ask is I had considered attaching another fan to the drive cage and having it such air straight off the cage.

I guess it could also be done if it was suspending in line with the other 120mm - i just also thought it may increase airflow through the case.
There is a piece of sheet metal bolted to the case right under the floppy cage. If you cut that out, you may not be able to mount the floppy cage anymore. Do you plan to cut out that sheet metal?

mrochester
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Post by mrochester » Tue Sep 20, 2005 3:13 pm

No offence meant, but I can't for a minute believe that from one metre away you can't hear anything. My PC has one 120mm Nexus and when that's at 12volts (1000rpm), I can definitely hear it, nevermind the 5 fans you are running! My computer is also about a metre away.

mprezd
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Location: New Zealand

Post by mprezd » Tue Sep 20, 2005 3:26 pm

hyperq wrote:
Just out of interest, have you had any problems with the paper clips (bending etc)

I can't find the plastic clamps they use in aphonos' method - so I thought I may give this a go instead. I assume you still used the grommets when attaching the hard disks to the cage?
I have two hard drives in the cage and the paperclips show no sign of bending. They seem to be strong enough for three drives (perhaps even four?). Yes, I also use the rubber grommets. I am so happy with the silence achieved with this setup. Suspension is the best, maybe the only, way to completely kill the hard drive noise.
One other query, if you remove the floppy drive cage as well, would the suspension hang above the 120mm fan at the front? reason I ask is I had considered attaching another fan to the drive cage and having it such air straight off the cage.

I guess it could also be done if it was suspending in line with the other 120mm - i just also thought it may increase airflow through the case.
There is a piece of sheet metal bolted to the case right under the floppy cage. If you cut that out, you may not be able to mount the floppy cage anymore. Do you plan to cut out that sheet metal?
I have only just got my 3000B so I didn't realise the cage had sheet metal on it

maybe I will scrap that idea then

Cheers

hyperq
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Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 10:13 am
Location: Ithaca, New York, USA

Post by hyperq » Tue Sep 20, 2005 4:34 pm

mrochester wrote:No offence meant, but I can't for a minute believe that from one metre away you can't hear anything. My PC has one 120mm Nexus and when that's at 12volts (1000rpm), I can definitely hear it, nevermind the 5 fans you are running! My computer is also about a metre away.
If you read carefully, you should have noticed that all 5 fans are either undervolted or under thermo control.
- Nexus 120 and TriCool are both undervolted by one Fan Mate II.
- Zalman 7000 is controlled by Cool'n'Quiet in BIOS.
- Panaflo is running at 7v.
- Zalman VF700 is in "auto-pilot".

If you take the time to read people's posts here carefully, you will learn a lot more than just by simply skimming.

ozdoc
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Location: Perth, Australia

Post by ozdoc » Tue Sep 20, 2005 4:59 pm

I'll back you up Hyperq.

My three Nexii in 3000b @ 7v @ 1m are inaudible.
If only you could undervolt a raptor... :wink:

mrochester
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Post by mrochester » Tue Sep 20, 2005 6:07 pm

If you take the time to read people's posts here carefully, you will learn a lot more than just by simply skimming.
I didn't skim read, my point is that a computer with so many fans can definitely still be heard, especially when my 1 Nexus fan at 12volts can be heard (but which normally runs at 5volts). If I add one TriCool fan at 5volts, I can certainly tell the difference in noise.

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Tue Sep 20, 2005 6:25 pm

hyperq --

Very nice post, practically a how-to article with all the relevant links for newbies -- and even oldies.

BTW, to support your contention that you can't hear your 5-fan PC from a meter away, I just moved my office from a hardwood floor room to one that has carpeting. My main PC was very quiet before, but somewhat audible. Now, I am sitting right next to it; it's 3' below my left ear on the floor next to my chair. I have to lean down at least a foot and tilt my head towards it to start hearing it. This PC has 4 fans, only one of them a 120mm Nexus, the rest Panaflos, etc, all 80mm.

Audibility depends on your hearing, ambient background noise, as wel as damping materials in the room.

hyperq
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Location: Ithaca, New York, USA

Post by hyperq » Tue Sep 20, 2005 6:46 pm

Hi Mike,

Thanks for the compliment. I have learned so much from SPCR that I want share what I have learned, especially the effective techniques. The post I wrote is more like a term paper after months of intense study. =) I wanted to write it because I will remember it deeper. Otherwise I will just forget what I did a few months from now.

I really want to thanks you for building SPCR and made it such a nice place for quiet PC enthusiasts. Without SPCR, my PC is very likey still drowning me in noise. Moreover, there are so many brains at SPCR, it is fun just to check out what people have done to quiet their PCs.



Hi mrochester,

BTW, my room is carpetted too. I guess the only way to convince you that my PC is quiet is to invite you to my room and sit where I sit. =)

mrochester
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Post by mrochester » Wed Sep 21, 2005 1:08 am

BTW, my room is carpetted too. I guess the only way to convince you that my PC is quiet is to invite you to my room and sit where I sit. =)
Very much so I guess. I do have particularly sharp hearing, and I have been used to a system with only 1 fan for a while now, so I guess if I changed it, it would seem louder to me. Right now my washing machine a few rooms away easily drowns out the noise of my computer... it's late at night when it's deadly silent that I pick up on it! Even then I require my PC to make absolutely no noise (or as little as possible :P)

flarkit
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Post by flarkit » Wed Sep 21, 2005 9:54 pm

:D

(gushing)

Wow. Guys like hyperq will keep this site at the top of my rankings. Solid, helpful information, easy-to-implement, well-documented and tolerant too!

(/gushing)

I'm aiming for the SLK3000B for myself too, so your thread is fantastic. I'm just a little nervous too, of the paperclip approach, but there is sure to be dozens of good options there.

Well done.

Myth!
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Post by Myth! » Tue Oct 04, 2005 5:44 pm

the SLK3000b looks indentical internally to the compucase 6A19 and the acousticase C6607, though the C6607 comes with special feet and a full accoustic wadding kit. the SLK is different externally to some degree, I think it looks sleeker, but I've never liked doors on the front, they always snap off!

The vinyl tiles looks like a great cheap deadener.....how does it rate against the proper accoustic foam or dynamat sheets?

ozdoc
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Post by ozdoc » Wed Oct 05, 2005 4:56 am

the SLK is different externally to some degree, I think it looks sleeker, but I've never liked doors on the front, they always snap off!
I haven't been a fan of front doors either, but having now used a 3000B for the past month, I would say that one of the most effective sound diminishing features is in fact the front door. IMHO, it makes a dramatic difference to the DVD drive noise. (admittedly my door has foam on the inside, which also gives it less of a "cheap plastic" feel)

Myth!
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Post by Myth! » Wed Oct 05, 2005 12:12 pm

if you open the drawer via software (Nero before a verify for instance) does the drawer open the door (and close it too? lol) or will it strain against it?

I agree the noise factor is important, I had overlooked that, my drive only spins on bootup and when playing games which= headphones anyway.

Pictures-wise.... I'm guessing they need hosting at another site? I'm new to posting pics though perhaps will have my own webspace once DSL arrives

Ralf Hutter
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Post by Ralf Hutter » Thu Oct 06, 2005 6:33 am

Myth! wrote:if you open the drawer via software (Nero before a verify for instance) does the drawer open the door (and close it too? lol) or will it strain against it?
If the door is latched, it won't open. The first thing I do after installing Nero is the turn off the "eject when finished" setting. You still have to remember to leave the door open or ajar when erasing CDrws though, as there's no way to turn off the automatic eject setting when in that mode.

Devilsown
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Post by Devilsown » Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:21 am

Excellent thread!

I'm planning on building a new pc with the 3000B as well and was wondering why you haven't made any use of CPU ventilation hole?

A friend of mine made a simple pipe using cardbord in order to let his Zalman suck up fresh air from the outside and according to him it gets a few degrees cooler this way. I could imagine that such a large pipe in the middle of you case isn't ideal for airflow though..

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Post by Myth! » Fri Oct 07, 2005 1:08 pm

i have a compucase 6A19...essentially the same but without the CPU vents in the side-panel. I also had the zalman 7000b-cu. I made a cylinder out of acetate sheet which slid over the heatsink fins providing fresh air....idle dropped from ~50c to ~45c with fan at 570rpm (P4 prescott 3.2@3.8Ghz/1.5V 944fsb) and load from ~65c to ~61c when using the tube. It definately is worth doing...though if you can suspend the tube so its just over the fins but not touching then i'd definately do that, it can amplify the vibrations. Needs a filter too, but it looks like its already filtered in that case. Whats the best noise-dampening material that also lets airflow through? I though of a revolving door....but thats gonna make its own noises lol :idea:

theyangster
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Post by theyangster » Wed Nov 30, 2005 10:40 pm

hyperq-
nice build, I have the early version of this case, the 3700AMB love it

I assume you drilled bigger holes for the power supply screws (love the idea)

hyperq
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Post by hyperq » Sun Mar 26, 2006 1:02 pm

No drilling needed. The hard drive screws included in SLK3000B fit in the seasonic power supply perfectly.

theyangster
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Post by theyangster » Sun Mar 26, 2006 11:03 pm

the rubber grommets fit in the stock hole?

that's what I meant :oops:

-theyangster

hyperq
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Post by hyperq » Mon Mar 27, 2006 5:28 am

It doesn't take much to squeeze the rubber grommets in there.

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