Ahh finally a Quiet HTPC (from a Zalman whore)

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Scott L, Jul 5, 2003.

  1. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    Just installed a Zalman flower and BOY what a difference! The comp now makes about 1/3 the noise my Xbox does, the loudest thing being a 40gig WD harddrive. Next up, a HD enclosure!

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    Case is a D-Vine 4 series which looks like it keeps noise out but it doesn't.. sound seeps under the front air inlet on the bottom and even through the 5.25" bay door.

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    Stock HSF with noiseless heatpipe VGA cooler and a small 80mm custom fan mount.

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    Zalman ships their noiseless fans with a little adapter which is just a resistor to limit power intake to the fan, reducing noise and RPMs dramatically. I just couldn't get enough airflow with an 80mm and luckiy found that a 92mm fits and is whisper quiet with the resistor spinning at 1600rpm. Placement here needed a small angle iron, this area is great because it also keeps the HD's relatively cool. The 120gb Maxtor heats up very fast and is almost too hot to touch at times. [​IMG]

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    The pure copper version of this flower is heeeavy, but that's good since copper is denser and dissapates heat better than aluminum. (note the 92mm fan)

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    Used the paste that came with it to grease up the p2.4b, the clips were relatively easy to snap into place.

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    Used the supplied fan speed controller to keep the fan hovering around 1500rpms, just about where I couldn't hear it. Although people say they got hotter temperatures with this quiet setup I got the opposite. I get cooler and more stable temperatures when playing games & DV encoding than the stock Intel HSF. (check out the htpics dir for more pics)

    Cost:
    Zalman Copper Flower kit: $36 shipped from BBC.
    Zalman Heatpipe cooler: $24 shipped refurb from Newegg
    Zalman ZM-F2 noiseless 92mm fan: $14 shipped
    Total = $74

    A little more than I'd like but worth it in the end, especially when your computer's in the theater. [​IMG]
     
  2. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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    It's sure a pretty heat sink (from a guy who often buys new heat sinks for their industrial design rather than for their intended use).
     
  3. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    Neat. I've been contemplating ordering the Zalman VGA passive heatsink from www.ncix.com, although I am still waiting for the local shop to get it.
     
  4. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    Thought about water cooling?
     
  5. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    Water cooling is still pricey, and the local retailer here (www.memoryexpress.com) will not allow returns or exchanges for water cooling products. [​IMG]

    Besides, you still need a fan for water cooling.

    Did I mention that water cooling is expensive? $300 CDN minimum, and that is without a CPU water block. Feh.
     
  6. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    You don't need a fan for water cooling, actually. I have a friend with a black ice extreme radiator and no fan and it works great. I won't argue that it's expensive, though.
     
  7. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    James believe me I'd jump at the chance for water cooling, I simpy can't afford it right now.
     
  8. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    I'm getting my radiator, pump and reservoir for the low low price of $100, I just need to get the water block and a desktop system and I'm in business. I'm holding off until the Athlon 64 or Prescott comes out.
     
  9. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    James, what processor is your friend using that would allow him to get away with not using a fan?

    I want good performance without the fan noise, but for the best performance with the latest games, a fan may still be needed.

    On the other hand, it would be neat to use the external water cooling solutions (like the Koolance one) with really long tubes and move the unit outside the room. [​IMG]
     
  10. Todd Bohlke

    Todd Bohlke Agent

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    That's a pretty sweet case--how much did it cost you?
     
  11. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    Max, the water blocks are very quiet. I don't see the need to put them all the way in another room! If the noise really bothers you I'm sure you can cover the block in some sound dampening material.

    Todd- thanks, the case costs arouns $200 at Newegg and exoticpc.com. It doesn't come with a VFD display. [​IMG]
     

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