Core 2 duo all SPCR inspired components

Show off your quiet rig.

Moderators: NeilBlanchard, Ralf Hutter, sthayashi, Lawrence Lee

Post Reply
ckolivas
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:16 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Core 2 duo all SPCR inspired components

Post by ckolivas » Tue Dec 12, 2006 2:18 am

Here's a list of the important components:

Case: Antec Solo
CPU: Intel 6600 core 2 duo
heatsink: Thermalright Ultra 120
Fans: 2xS-Flex SFF21D
PSU: Seasonic S12 Energy+ 550W
Motherboard: ASUS P5B
Graphics card: ASUS EN7600GS Silent 512MB
Hard drive: WD5000KS


I was not planning on using the Antec tricool that the solo came with, and was not going to put any fans in the front of the case. I had tried to make a "positive pressure case" in the past without succeeding in stopping dust from entering it, and found a rear case fan made the most difference to all temperatures instead so I was only to use the one rear case fan.

The only component I had not worked with or seen reviewed was the newer Seasonic PSU as the S430 was no longer available locally (which I have used before) and this was an apparently better PSU.

All photos have enlargements, click on them for full size.


Preparation time, all equipment ready:

Image

It was a hot day so my favourite pc building drink (cognac) was unsuitable so a suitable alternative was chosen.


Preparation of the SFlex fans with my favourite decoupling method; with velcro dots:

Image


The inside of the case rear duct showing the velcro dots in place:

Image


Showing all the components and how nicely they mount and fit:

Image


Showing the heat sink on the graphics card:

Image


The gap between PSU, HSF and rear case fan:

Image


The lovely in built suspension for the hard drives with drive in situ:

Image


The surprisingly nice finish of the Antec Solo from the side:

Image


And from the front:

Image


Conclusions.
The nice part is that all the components are stock, no undervolting of fans required, no performance compromises, no heat compromises. The cpu barely gets to 52 degrees run flat out with ambient 26 degrees and the graphics card got to 62 degrees run flat out. Hard drive temp 40 degrees.

Sound wise? The quietest PC I've built yet, with the seek noise of the WD5000KS being the most notable sound and then the PSU which has proven itself about as quiet -at any time- as the S430 in my experience when it was idle.

Suffice to say I'm also very happy with its performance. The solo was a lovely case to work with and all the components lived up their expectations apart from the seek noise of the WD being slightly louder than I was expecting (but still very reasonable).

Thanks SPCR for all the reviews and recommendations!

nemo
Posts: 66
Joined: Sat May 13, 2006 6:45 am

Post by nemo » Tue Dec 12, 2006 4:08 am

id say the psu is oversized for your system, otherwise very nice and clean setup!

CA_Steve
Moderator
Posts: 7490
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:52 am

Nice build! I like the velcro dots for fan mounting.

A couple of questions:

How was the Pale Ale?

I've heard that the audio connection on the P5B mobo is stuffed in the corner. Any trouble with cabling? Any other mobo quirkiness? (I've been leaning toward the P5B-E for my next build).

nightmorph
Posts: 316
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:07 am

Post by nightmorph » Tue Dec 12, 2006 8:08 am

Fantastic build. :)

As said earlier, the PSU is definitely overkill, but it's such a nice, quiet, energy-efficient overkill that I don't think anybody would mind. I really, really like the velcro spots -- I've never seen this done. Sounds like just the thing if you're planning on doing several specific upgrades down the road. Certainly makes it easier to swap fans than the cable tie, glue, or stretch cord methods.

One thing I would suggest regarding dust buildup is to add some foam mesh to the interior of your case. I've discovered that the builtin front filter works very well, but I ended up having to place pieces of the thin foam padding that came with my motherboard over the ventilation strip on the back, as well as another large piece just behind the unused front 5.25" panel covers. After a month of running I noticed that dust definitely likes to sneak its way in under and around my top-mounted DVD drive.

Also, just to squeeze out the last possible 1% of unobstructed airflow, you might want to remove all unused hard drive sleds, and that 5.25-to-3" converter sled. Gives more room for storing cables up top if necessary, and (so my theory goes) the less metal that is hard-mounted in there, the less there is to rattle.

The Solo is so much fun to work in. :)

ckolivas
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:16 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Post by ckolivas » Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:38 pm

Little creatures Pale Ale is Australia's best mass produced beer and a regular drink for me so I have to say it was lovely.

http://ratebeer.com/Beer/little-creatur ... -ale/7658/

Yes the PSU is definitely oversized. I was planning on using the S430 in the build but my regular supplier of quiet components pccasegear no longer had it in stock and the energy plus did appear, at least on paper, to be better so it was a slight gamble. As it turns out, the fan in it produces the same noise as the S430, but up to higher power outputs so it is better.

The Velcro dots I've done many times before and they're cheap and easy to work with. I've posted pictures of them before in these forums, but hadn't seen anyone else on the SCPR forums use them.

I removed the hard drive sleds on either side of the hard drive for unobstructed airflow. I've not noticed any rattle whatsoever with this case with whatever is left in so I'm happy. I was even considering pulling off the front air filter for better airflow but then I decided that was pushing the not-caring-about-dust issue too much.

I'm not too keen on the foam mesh inside obstructing airflow. I'll just blow it out with compressed air every 3 months or so. I've given up on the idea of a dust proof case.

The audio connection to the dvd burner you can see in the picture above. It was a fairly tight fit getting it to reach but still managed to be kept under the cables tucked away behind the back plate (the solo has nice cable holders next to the hard drive trays). Also the cable still managed to be kept low to the motherboard providing no restriction to airflow. You can also see on that pic how I tucked the USB cables under the vga card to keep them out of the way. Probably the only other quirk with the P5B was that the pata connector was right at the bottom putting it pretty far away from the dvd drive also making it a tight stretch to reach it at the top. Ultimately none of these were showstoppers for me. Probably my biggest mistake was assembling all this before putting the HSF on the cpu, only to discover it had a back plate needing access to the rear of the motherboard (doh!). So I had to pull the motherboard out and start again. I was originally planning on a Scythe heatsink that didn't need a backplate but ended up going for the Thermalright and in the swap had forgotten the backplate issue.

ckolivas
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:16 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Post by ckolivas » Tue Dec 12, 2006 2:26 pm

Velcro dots pictures from my earlier forum thread:

Image

Image

CA_Steve
Moderator
Posts: 7490
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Dec 12, 2006 3:19 pm

thanks for the cable management feedback...now I'm going to spend hours staring at beer ratings....while drinking a Double Bock.

ckolivas
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:16 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Post by ckolivas » Thu Dec 14, 2006 9:02 pm

Heh another build mistake on my part. Note in the picture how I put the DDR2 ram in two different coloured slots. To get dual channel with 2 ram modules they need to be in the same colour slots so I've since corrected that.

s_xero
Posts: 154
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 2:56 pm

Post by s_xero » Fri Dec 15, 2006 2:50 am

Nice build mate!

Probably a thumb down for the colour of the drive and the solo, my drive matches the colour of my P180 :) (It's a Sony 720)

And I never tried (Australian) Pale Ale??

You Know Newcastle Brown I guess :P :P

My fav. is dutch: Hertog Jan Karakter :D

alleycat
Posts: 740
Joined: Sun Oct 20, 2002 10:32 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Post by alleycat » Mon Dec 18, 2006 4:04 am

Cooper's Pale Ale is probably my favourite Australian beer, especially when on tap. The beer I like most is from Germany - Erdinger Weissbier. I also like Korean beers when I'm in the mood for something refreshing.

Getting back on topic... ditto the comments about the velcro dots, nice idea. Do you need to seal the edges with tape also?

I have to say, I'm always surprised when I see people not using a Ninja. While it may not make much difference to the overall system noise, it would have allowed you to use one less fan, which is always nice. Also, if you are concerned about dust, the wide fin spacing and "passive" operation of the Ninja means that this would be less of a problem as far as the CPU HS is concerned.

Felger Carbon
Posts: 2049
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2005 11:06 am
Location: Klamath Falls, OR

Velcro dot source in the US of A

Post by Felger Carbon » Mon Dec 18, 2006 10:11 am

Go to Staples.com, search for "velcro sticky back". 7/8" squares, 12 for $2.50 (white or black). 3/4" "coins", 200 for $19 (beige). 5/8" coins, 75 for $9 (white or black). Hey, these things do look neat! :wink:

You might even find them at yer local Staples.

ckolivas
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:16 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Post by ckolivas » Thu Jan 25, 2007 8:56 pm

Yes the Pale Ale is indeed Australian, and easy to find in Australia but less so exported. Favourite German is Weihenstephaner Hefe Weissbier. Coopers pale is very nice too but sweeter than I generally like.

I didn't go with the Scythe because I wasn't planning a fanless setup since these fans were inaudible over anything else and figured the extra cooling wouldn't hurt for no extra noise ;) I'm no longer concerned about dust - I just blow it out once every 3 months.

Hopefully others will catch onto the velcro idea too now too :)

Erssa
Posts: 1421
Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2005 9:26 pm
Location: Finland

Post by Erssa » Thu Jan 25, 2007 10:44 pm

Neat build and presentation, no-compromise components, mandatory installation beer, what's not to like?

Post Reply