So I've decided my trusty old Antec 300 case just doesn't fit my needs anymore. I've upgraded the computer with some case fans and overclocked the beast and frankly I need a better case to do the job. The reason: Noise.
I've done what I can to reduce the noise my computer puts out due to the fans. I've lowered the speeds to "medium" settings (I use Antec Tri-Cools as they are readily available) and so far the results have been OK. At idle my Phenom II X4 965 sits at a comfortable 30 C and at max load it hits roughly 48-51 C depending on ambient conditions. I have 2 front case fans and the standard top 140MM and the rear 120MM set to medium as well. But even this isn't solving my real issue.
I am very sensitive to noise, and 4 fans spinning at different RPM's (roughly 1500 if I recall) and the vibration is causes along with my 120MM CPU fan (I use a cooler master 212 Hyper + to cool the CPU as I occasionally overclock it) going at 2000 RPM and my video card cooler (although this is usually very quiet and effective) on my 5850 BE just leads me to having killer headaches after about 20 minutes.
It sucks that I spent all this time and money and I can't even enjoy the damn thing! So I am reaching out for help. I need some suggestions on cases that will alleviate my current predicament. I have ~$150 USD to work with. I was looking into the Antec P183 but not sure as to how great the airflow is. I've read some reviews and people swear by them.
I won't even look at Antec 900 (or 900 SE) because it's all mesh and while it might breath well, I am sure they put some noise out. I may look into a Cooler Master Scout or something of that line up.
I also must be mindful because the cooler master 212+ I use is pretty tall and might not fit well in some cases. Any idea's on this one? Aside from swapping fans I mean. I like Antec and have had mixed results with other brands in the past (Thermaltake).
Not a fan on the Sonata series (I don't really want to go back to using a top mount PSU) and NZXT is not available for pick up where I live. Also their products (NZXT) just seem cheap to me. The build quality doesn't feel as durable as Coolermaster and Antec's offerings. But thanks for throwing them out there, I do appreciate it. And ColdSleep, thank you for the link. It was informative.