Looking for some silent fans & case..

By JohnR
May 26, 2006
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  1. My pc makes way too much noise & im looking to get some new fans & mayb a case, any reccommendations?
  2. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,572   +9

    Check what exactly is making the noise. I know my PC is more or less silent except for the power supply unit's fans, so if thats the case, you'd need to change the PSU itself.

    As for cases, cases generally do not help in reducing noise, and those that are designed to absorb noise do cost a bomb. Some simple notes on picking out a case: get them with 120mm fan holes. bigger fans are quieter than smaller fans, so replacing the fans in your comp with larger fans will help reduce fan noise. Thicker fans help too.

    On specific models, you can check out the model details, and the dbA (amount of noise it makes). Lower is better, and every 3dbA higher is 2 times louder (if I remember correctly). Therefore 25dbA is 2 times louder than 22 dbA.]

    Hope that helps.
  3. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 3,565

    For cases, there are two different approaches to lowering the overall system noise.

    One is to simply use less fans. This pathway is obviously not a good choice for overclockers, as less fans equalls less overall airflow in your case. On the otherhand, it is a good, cost effective way of lowering your system noise. My case runs with a single 12" fan at the back, one on the power supply, stock fan on the Athlon64 3700+ and stock fan on my Asus EN7800GT (which happens to be the loudest part in my system).

    As CMH mentioned above, a 12" fan makes a big difference. Mine has 3 speed settings, and on low it is not audible. When I am gaming, or on a hot day I have to turn it up to med, but even then it is BARELY audible. My case is this one and I would highly recommend it. It was designed to keep systems quiet:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129155

    Another way to build a quiet system is to invest in a case that actually has noise dampners built into the walls of the case. Here is a good example of one:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129017

    They are more expensive of course, but make a HUGE difference in your overall system noise.

    But even with dampners, your system is only as quiet as your noisest part. Keep that in mind when buying your other parts, such as graphics cards. That is one of the differences many people don't pay attention to when comparing graphics cards. One 7900GT can be quite loud and another deafeningly quiet. Read the reviews before buying.

    The PSU is another one often overlooked for how much noise they can make.
  4. cornellian

    cornellian Newcomer, in training Posts: 27

    Umm, I don't mean to hijack the thread but to expand the discussion let me ask/remind you about this alternative:
    What about getting a case with a huge 250mm fan? I am probably going to get this XClio case from newegg. If less fans = less noise, then JohnR, you might be better off with this one for you would probably get away with adding one more 120mm fan..

    Oh and by the way CMH, I believe it is 10 db increase that should mean twice the noise as far as I know..
    cornellian
  5. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,572   +9

    Actually, doing some googling showed that a 3db increase is 2times the intensity of sound. I was right.

    a huge 250mm fan will definately help reduce the sound, but make sure you test it out first. Its not a standard size, so getting a replacement will be hard, and not many cases will take 250mm fans. Seems like an overkill if you're not into overclocking and stuff, and just into making your PC less noisy.

    And yes, I forgot to mention you can get fan speed controllers. These are great for reducing noise when you don't want it, yet gives you the option of better cooling when you need it (when you're gaming maybe?). You just connect the fans into this nifty item, and there's knobs for you to twist and turn to control fan speeds.

    As I mentioned, some PSU's make alot of noise, I've got a couple which really irritates me. I personally changed the fans (voiding the warranty), but I don't recommend something like that cos you're really messing around with the internals of the PSU.

    Not yet mentioned: HDDs can generate alot of noise as well, but you can't really do anything about this other than getting an enclosure for it (will take up 5.25" bay) or replacing it. not sure about the efficacy of enclosures, plus it may increase the temp of your HDD, and some come with 40mm fans (and as mentioned, the smaller a fan is, the louder they tend to be).


    I've always wanted to know for sure, but I suspect that alot of low volume fans put together can still generate alot of noise. I'm waiting for my friend to finish his degree in engineering to ask him about this :D
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