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Need opinions on quiet work pc

Last response: in Systems
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December 27, 2010 8:14:29 PM

I would like to build a quiet pc for web programming, office apps etc. (ie non-gaming, non-HTPC). I plan to run Win 7 pro as host and GUI Linux VM for web site local development.

Below are some specs provided by a local store.

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Case - Fractal R3
PS - Seasonic M12II 520W
CPU - Intel i5 960 + Corsair A50 fan
MB - Asus P7P55D-E LX
RAM - OCZ DDR3-1333 2x2GB
HDD (Boot - Corsair F60GB SSD, Data - Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1TB)
GPU - Asus Radeon 5450
Monitors - 2 x LG W2243T (24")
KB/Mouse - MS Wireless Desktop 3000 Bluetrack
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I have a few questions:

1. Is there another case you'd also recommend?
2. Would a Seasonic X-400FL (400W fanless) PS put out enough power for this system?
3. Is 4GB RAM enough for Windows 7 and a couple of 1GB VMs?
4. Is 60GB boot enough for Windows 7 and all the inevitable service packs etc.
5. Assuming 60GB is plenty for the boot drive is it worth trying to squeeze a 20GB linux VM on the boot drive as well or should I just leave it on the Seagate?
6. I've read the Seagate drives can be noisy - would a WD Green better and offer adequate performance?
7. Is the Radeon adequate or overkill for my basic graphics needs?

Thanks

More about : opinions quiet work

December 27, 2010 9:16:16 PM

If not gaming, I'd choose about any ATI/AMD PCI-e video card you can get your hands on for $50 or less...

I'd stick with original PSU, I prefer not to push a power supply beyond 60-70% of it's rated capacity...; more of a margin as it ages over the years.
December 27, 2010 9:18:49 PM

There are Nvidia 8400GS cards for $35 at Best Buy, on sale..
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December 27, 2010 9:25:43 PM

ok - thanks - there are oodles of video cards out there - any particular recommendations? BTW the Asus Radeon 5450 is only $66.
December 27, 2010 9:28:20 PM

the 8400GS is DDR2 but mobo is DDR3 - does that matter?
December 27, 2010 11:22:32 PM

Samsung HDDs are very quiet. There's even a setting somewhere to make them quieter.

I've also had good (quiet) results with Seasonic PSUs and Scythe coolers. The normal (fanned) Seasonics are very quiet so I don't think you'll need a fanless model. It won't hurt though if it's within budget.

You probably don't need a graphics card. Onboard has been plenty powerful for what you want for years - at least on the AMD platform, not so sure about Intel.

A cheap case can be a major source of noise. last computer I put together had carefully chosen quiet parts but vibrations from the HDDs made the case resonate with a droning sound. Next build I think I'll just make one out of wood.
December 28, 2010 4:37:11 AM

Thanks for your comments. Do you have specific experience with Fractal cases?
December 28, 2010 10:10:00 AM

Quote:
CPU - Intel i5 960 + Corsair A50 fan
MB - Asus P7P55D-E LX


That LGA 1366 CPU (if i7 960) is incompatible with that LGA 1156 mobo @@

If u live near a Microcenter:

1055T + Gigabyte 880G mATX and HD 4250 IGP @ $225?
http://www.microcenter.com/specials/promotions/AMDbundl...
IGP does fine for non gaming dual display and with a Radeon class GPU scales for up to 4 displays via ATI Surround View feature
http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1390782

As for your other questions:

1. APEX mATX?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
2. Antec 380 80+ Bronze?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
3. If VM is heavy hit 8GB DDR3?
4. Good to go
5. Your call
6. Actually if u need cheap, big storage mechanical have a look at Samsung F4 2TBs?
7. An IGP from 2008/780G or better would suffice ^^


December 28, 2010 5:08:33 PM

Thanks batuchka. I will check the mobo/cpu compatibility and IGP alternatives. Not so sure about the case/PSU though.
December 30, 2010 7:48:49 AM

Case as per sense of aesthetics and an IGP rig with an Antec 380 80+ Bronze is good to go unless u want more headroom for a powerful discrete GPU later You are welcomed ^^
!