I am planning to convert my PC into an HTPC soon, and I like many others, want a silent HTPC.
One of my bigger worries is regarding my CPU. Since it is a 90nm Athlon 3500+, first of all, it shouldn't draw much heat (and therefore energy), right?
I have heard the "use silent fans" argument before, but I guess I'm really desirous of a totally fanless system.
Right now I have a Scythe Ninja Mini heatsink with a fan, but I wish I could not have the fan.
I'm lucky to have many fans and a full tower case on my current setup, but I want to move my hardware into a midtower or HTPC case, and I would really, really like a system with minimum noise--but obviously there's the worry about trapping heat...
I would really appreciate some really honest feedback about this--thanks guys!
I don't think A64 3500+ can run with just a passive heatsink. You can try running it without the fan to see how hot it will get. You might need excellent air flow to make passive cooling remotely plausible. However, good air flow comes from good case fans, so its counter-intuitive.
IMO, you should get a massive heatsink, and use extreme silent fan (Scythe has a lot of them).
yes, you can, I did it with amd 3400+ with an aftermark heatsink hr01-k8( no fan), the loading temp is about same as standard heatsink.
Also you can go to bias and lower the cpu voltage, it will help heat problem.
you can check out silent pc review web, there are some excellent information about how to built a fanless computer
Yes, you should have no problems cooling passively with the mini Scythe Ninja. A few years ago people were passively cooling the X2 4400+ with the regular size Ninja and the more daring people were passively cooling a X2 4600+ with the Ninja.
Granted you have the mini Ninja, but since you only have a single core CPU, it should be a problem as long as you do not overclock. The most important thing to do is make sure your case has decent air flow.
You should also do a test run with the case open and then with the case close, just to play it safe. Run an intensive program like CPU Burn or something like that and monitor the CPU temperature. If the temps goes too high for your liking then kill CPU Burn. I don't know what maximum safe temp for the Athlon 3500+ is so you need to research that.