My silent PC build

Show off your quiet rig.

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AdiV
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My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Tue May 26, 2015 7:16 am

CPU: Intel i3-4330 3.5 GHz

CPU Cooler: Zalman FX70 (no fan)

MB: Gigabyte GA-H97-D3H

RAM: Corsair Vengeance 8 GB 1600 MHz CL9

GPU: Gainward GeForce GTX 750 2 GB SilentFX (fanless)

PSU: Super Flower Golden Silent 500W (fanless)

Storage: 1xSSD Corsair Force GT + 1xHDD WD Black

Case: Fractal Design Core 3000 with two intake fans (1x 140mm + 1x120mm) and one exhaust fan (1x120mm)

Fan Controller: Lamptron FC5v2

At first this was a multimedia fanless system, but then GTA V PC was released :D So i had to add the case fans and a controller to boot with the fans off (tough thing to find..) I keep the fans off most of the time, i only turn them on for gaming. The WD hard drive is suspended, still it makes a little bit of noise. If i pull out the power cord from the hard drive and turn off the fans this is a completely silent system with no coil whine. I will replace the HDD with a SSD in the future.
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Last edited by AdiV on Sun May 31, 2015 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Abula
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by Abula » Tue May 26, 2015 7:45 am

Nice clean build.

The only thing that i would have done different is the orientation of the PSU, there is no reason to place it downwards if no fans are going to move air from it, on most seasonic fanless, the manufacturer recommends the holes on top to aid the cooling of the PSU by the hot air rising, so i would turn the PSU 180.

xan_user
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by xan_user » Tue May 26, 2015 7:55 am

WELCOME TO SPCR!

Very nice build.

is the bottom intake blocked off, open, or does it have a fan as well?

I think you get credit for first to post use zalman fanless HS here. I wish SPCR could get their hands on one, to fully test.

You really need a bit more room around the HDD for suspension to work well. the way you have it is not enough cord between the drive and the cage to isolate vibrations. suspend it on its edge in the HDD rack, or put it horizontal in a 5.25" bay. (- or just go SSD like you want.)

quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Tue May 26, 2015 8:08 am

xan_user wrote:I think you get credit for first to post use zalman fanless HS here. I wish SPCR could get their hands on one, to fully test.
I have it since a while: in my experience it's (slightly) better than the Kotetsu at low airflow, it can run (a tad hot) fanless with stock i5 at gaming loads (4690, but undervolted, to be fair), and it's better looking (otherwise it's more expensive, about +30% here without any fan, and it's likely less compatible with small builds). BTW, I wouldn't bet Lawrence will find similar results in a possible review. :wink:

CA_Steve
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by CA_Steve » Tue May 26, 2015 9:19 am

Nice build :)

How about a mini-review on the Core 3000 case? Why this case rather than the newer (and cheaper) 3500?

What temps are you seeing while playing GTA V?

AdiV
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 11:09 pm

Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Sat May 30, 2015 9:28 am

Hey, i've been a little busy these days.
Abula wrote:The only thing that i would have done different is the orientation of the PSU, there is no reason to place it downwards if no fans are going to move air from it, on most seasonic fanless, the manufacturer recommends the holes on top to aid the cooling of the PSU by the hot air rising, so i would turn the PSU 180.
Thank you very much for this idea. I am aware about air convection but i did not take the PSU into consideration. So, i turned it 180 degrees but i encountered two problems:

1. The PSU is not fully modular so the 24-pin ATX cable, the 8-pin CPU cable and one PCI-E cable were on the opposite side of the cutout hole of the case causing a cable mess. I've attached a photo.

2. The inside of the PSU is very unaesthetic.

Because under load the PSU radiator is cold, i left it the way it was. Thank you again for the input.
SPC3_psu.jpg
xan_user wrote:is the bottom intake blocked off, open, or does it have a fan as well?
The bottom intake has a 120mm Fractal Design R2 fan. On top is a 140mm Fractal Design fan. I've attached a photo.
SPC2_front_panel.jpg
xan_user wrote:You really need a bit more room around the HDD for suspension to work well. the way you have it is not enough cord between the drive and the cage to isolate vibrations. suspend it on its edge in the HDD rack, or put it horizontal in a 5.25" bay. (- or just go SSD like you want.)
I know the suspension is tight but it doesn't get through any vibrations whatsoever. I can't wait for that SSD :)
CA_Steve wrote: How about a mini-review on the Core 3000 case? Why this case rather than the newer (and cheaper) 3500?

What temps are you seeing while playing GTA V?
It's a solid case but has two major flaws:

1. Doesn't have a cutout for the 8-pin CPU power cord.

2. Just 1 cm gap between the backplate and the back panel so there is very limited room for cable management. I've attached a photo.
SPC4_gap.jpg
The GTA V temps vary with the outside temp and the controller voltage, but the maximum i've seen are 65 degrees for the GPU and about 45 degrees for the CPU, with the fans @800-900 rpm. I'll have a closer look and get back.

I've made some modifications: I moved the SSD on top, above the DVD-player and i've connected the two intake fans to one controller channel with a 3-pin fan splitter. Now i have the intake control on one channel/knob and the exhaust on the second channel/knob. The cables are a little bit of a mess because i need a longer SATA signal cable for the SSD. After i get that i'll work on all the cables.
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AdiV
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Sat May 30, 2015 8:13 pm

More pics
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CA_Steve
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by CA_Steve » Sun May 31, 2015 6:29 am

thanks :)

AdiV
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Sun May 31, 2015 7:58 am

quest_for_silence wrote:
xan_user wrote:I think you get credit for first to post use zalman fanless HS here. I wish SPCR could get their hands on one, to fully test.
I have it since a while: in my experience it's (slightly) better than the Kotetsu at low airflow, it can run (a tad hot) fanless with stock i5 at gaming loads (4690, but undervolted, to be fair), and it's better looking (otherwise it's more expensive, about +30% here without any fan, and it's likely less compatible with small builds). BTW, I wouldn't bet Lawrence will find similar results in a possible review. :wink:
I understand you run an i5-4690 with Zalman FX70? Can u please tell me what temps do you get @ idle with no fans. By idle i mean light browsing, maybe a torrent client in the background... Thanks. I dont;t know if i can upgrade to i5 and keep the Zalman cooler that is rated to handle 80W TDP with no fan. i5 has 84W TDP.

Thanks!

quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Sun May 31, 2015 10:11 am

AdiV wrote:Can u please tell me what temps do you get @ idle with no fans. By idle i mean light browsing, maybe a torrent client in the background

At idle (no load) there's no problem with about any decent cooler, I think.

I might simulate some light load with something like Prime, I guess from about a 25% load (blend, 1 thread), but if you can give me some reference about your typical memory and CPU load it would be better. Take also note I wouldn't have a fanless 60W GPU right behind the cooler, like you have.

Anyway, I will be able to perform some tests, but after june 11th (I'm out of town).

AdiV wrote:I dont;t know if i can upgrade to i5 and keep the Zalman cooler that is rated to handle 80W TDP with no fan. i5 has 84W TDP.

I guess that it strongly depends of your ambient temp.

Cistron
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by Cistron » Sun May 31, 2015 11:39 am

Hmm, I tempted to cancel my Mugen Max order and try out the Zalman now (also, it's cheaper).

Do you have a fan strapped to it Luca, or is it completely fanless?

quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Sun May 31, 2015 12:26 pm

Cistron wrote:Do you have a fan strapped to it Luca, or is it completely fanless?
Yes, I run it with a fan.

AdiV
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 11:09 pm

Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Sun May 31, 2015 6:27 pm

I wanted to see if i can run GTA online (1080p geforce experience optimised settings) and a 1080p movie at the same time on a dual monitor config. I'm surprised it works very well and i got some good temps: 42 degrees Celsius for the CPU and 54 degrees for the GPU with the sys fans running at full speed, 12v 1200-1300 rpm.
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quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Sun May 31, 2015 10:01 pm

AdiV wrote:with the sys fans running at full speed, 12v 1200-1300 rpm.
I guess you don't call that "quiet". :roll:
What about running them at a quieter level (to say, 600-800rpm)?

AdiV
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 11:09 pm

Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Mon Jun 01, 2015 2:40 am

quest_for_silence wrote: I guess you don't call that "quiet". :roll:
lol no :D . But as i said before, the fans are off all the time. i only turn them on when i play GTA. And i don't keep them on full rpm, just this time for a test.
quest_for_silence wrote:What about running them at a quieter level (to say, 600-800rpm)?
I usualy run them @600-800 rpm (only when gaming) -> the GPU doesn,t go above 65 degrees C even with 10% OC. On default settings 60-62 degrees C. And the CPU about 45 degrees. I think these are decent temps. Note that it's summer and my air conditioning unit shows 28-29 degrees inside.

quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:54 pm

quest_for_silence wrote:
AdiV wrote:Can u please tell me what temps do you get @ idle with no fans. By idle i mean light browsing, maybe a torrent client in the background

At idle (no load) there's no problem with about any decent cooler, I think.

I might simulate some light load with something like Prime, I guess from about a 25% load (blend, 1 thread), but if you can give me some reference about your typical memory and CPU load it would be better. Take also note I wouldn't have a fanless 60W GPU right behind the cooler, like you have.

Anyway, I will be able to perform some tests, but after june 11th (I'm out of town).

Well, I was able to perform some tests sooner than I thought.

Setup with Core i5 (3.5GHz/3.9GHz turbo) fitted with Zalman FX70, no CPU fan, single exhaust case fan (Slipstream 120mm running around 600rpm on the back of an Antec One Hundred), ambient temp around 32°C, I took a screenshot right after each "test" ended, and I resetted the recorded temps after each test.

The four columns showed (from HWiNFO64) are, respectively: current - minimum - maximum - average , obviously with reference to each test screenshot:
  • Web browsing (Firefox, 84 tabs), about 1h30min:
    web_fx70_cores_temp.jpg
  • Youtube video (classic concert), about 55min:
    youtube_fx70_cores_temp.jpg
  • Prime95 (blend, 1 core), about 1h30min:
    prime_fx70_cores_temp.jpg
  • Unigine Heaven (demo), about 2h:
    heaven_fx70_cores_temp.jpg
  • 3DMark 11 (demo+benchmark), about 10min:
    3D11_fx70_cores_temp.jpg


With reference to the Prime95 temps, please take note that, when fanless, the Zalman FX70 seems absolutely unable to perform a 4 threads test (tried, rather quickly it skyrocketed over 80°C, then the PC did freeze).

Hope this helps. :wink:
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quest_for_silence
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by quest_for_silence » Sun Jun 07, 2015 12:43 am

quest_for_silence wrote:
xan_user wrote:I think you get credit for first to post use zalman fanless HS here. I wish SPCR could get their hands on one, to fully test.

I have it since a while: in my experience it's (slightly) better than the Kotetsu at low airflow
...snipped out...

To xan_user: after my recent re-testing (see my previous post), I changed my mind. IME/IMO, all in all the Kotetsu is better than the FX70 at low airflow (though I fitted the Scythe with two Glidestream fans), and set aside finishing and aesthetics (the black nickel on Zalman is way better than the Scythe), I think that probably the Kotetsu is a cooler of an higher quality than the FX70.

AdiV
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Re: My silent PC build

Post by AdiV » Wed Jun 24, 2015 10:51 pm

Wow, thank you very much for this thorough review. The reason i didn't order the i5-4460 yet is that i'm taking Skylake into consideration. 14nm => low tdp. I'll wait until skylake is released in august and if i have the money i will upgrade to a silent mATX build (Corsair 350d case). If not i'll upgrade just the CPU and maybe the GPU.

Thank you again!

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