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Attempt at a quiet gaming system

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a b B Homebuilt system
October 3, 2011 10:03:57 PM

Hi guys,

I had a sudden urge to try and get my PC to be quiet as well as being able to max out any game at 1920x1200. My setup was the one in my sig at the moment but it was pretty noisy so i changed the case for a Fractal Design Define R3 and now it's louder lol. This is because i realised the PSU is what's making all that racket so at idle it's about the same but in games the reduced cooling shows because my GPU will scream in pain while playing pretty much anything. So long as it's quiet at idle though I'm OK with it although if anyone has any ideas on reducing the volume I'm all ears. First I'm going to replace my PSU with something like a Corsair AX-750 or a Seasonic X-660 so then i have my idle quietness.

So basically what i want to do is upgrade my PC so I can max Skyrim and BF3 but try to keep it quiet at least when not gaming. I'd like to keep it under £200 (ignore the PSU in the budget) as a rough guide but if you have a good idea just suggest, don't worry about the budget. My current idea is to get another GTX 460 but I'm really going to need a better cooling solution. I'd like to keep away from water cooling mainly because of the cost and maintenance, i can be convinced otherwise though.

It seems like the best course of action is to get a cheap GTX 460 for around £130 and spend the rest on some decent fans. At the moment i have the stock R3 fans and a Zaward Golf fan as an intake from the bottom. The Zaward fan is quiet but has very weak cooling, i may just get rid of it. I'm thinking maybe I should get a couple of Noctua NF-P14 FLX fans but I'm not sure on placement, this is purely for cooling the GPU because my CPU is fine. With this in mind i was thinking the bottom intake would be a good idea, possibly with the side as an exhaust? Or the other way around? I'm not too sure. Ideas?
a b B Homebuilt system
October 3, 2011 10:18:01 PM

I suggest that you upgrade to gigabyte 6870, one of the quietest higher end graphics cards out there. Also, try using bigger case fans as they usually spin slower and have a lower dB rating.
October 3, 2011 10:19:37 PM

PSU... Quiet = Silverstone, I have this one:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

My case is the Antec 600 <<< 2 x 120mm fans + 1 x 240mm fan

CPU Cooler - Corsair H50 with a second 120mm fan

I also have dual 40mm memory fans.

The loudest thing is my Video fan that is set @ 70% static.
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
October 3, 2011 11:21:05 PM

I suggest you sell the GTX460 and replace it with a stronger single card. A single card will not have to work as hard under load.

Get one with a dual slot direct exhaust that gets the heat out of the case directly.

I use a EVGA GTX580 superclocked like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It is all but inaudible with the fan at 40%
Some GTX5xx cards come with a high airflow back bracket. It can be bought from EVGA for $10.

It is in a silvestone tj-08E case with only the stock 180mm intake fan.

I bought a Seasonic X750 gold last year during the fall sales. It is inaudible.
Because it is so efficient, the fan does not run normally, and only slowly under load.
The psu is designed to protect itself, so don't count on it to add any case cooling.
If you get a gold rated psu, you will pay more, but it will be quieter.

For your case, if you can get a couple of 120mm output fans to mount at the top, there should be sufficient airflow. You will have good negative airflow.
The noctua fans are very efficient, but a bit pricey.
a b B Homebuilt system
October 3, 2011 11:41:21 PM

Go all-water and run the hoses through a wall into a different room where the radiator is. Run dryer duct (or something like it) from each case exhaust and the PSU exhaust into a manifold and then through a wall with a huge fan on the other end, and wrap it all in foam. Put foam baffles inside the manifold. There will then be no fans at all in the PC.
a b B Homebuilt system
October 4, 2011 12:10:34 AM

Petrofsky said:
Go all-water and run the hoses through a wall into a different room where the radiator is. Run dryer duct (or something like it) from each case exhaust and the PSU exhaust into a manifold and then through a wall with a huge fan on the other end, and wrap it all in foam. Put foam baffles inside the manifold. There will then be no fans at all in the PC.


You hilarious. :) 
a b B Homebuilt system
October 4, 2011 6:42:16 PM

Petrofsky said:
Go all-water and run the hoses through a wall into a different room where the radiator is. Run dryer duct (or something like it) from each case exhaust and the PSU exhaust into a manifold and then through a wall with a huge fan on the other end, and wrap it all in foam. Put foam baffles inside the manifold. There will then be no fans at all in the PC.


Note the £150-200 budget lol.

Thanks for the suggestions guys, don't think the single card is a good idea though because i could only upgrade to something like a HD 6950 1GB or GTX 560Ti and that's not much of an upgrade for that amount of cash. I know it would be quieter but i only really care about idle quietness. I might just buy a decent GTX 460 like the Gigabyte or MSI Cyclone and use that in the primary slot with the Palit in the secondary and get 1 x 120mm and 2 x 140mm Fractal Design silent series fans. I'll put the 140mm ones in the top and the 120mm in the front and hook the 3 120mm fans up to the fan controller and have them set to low-medium with the 140mm ones full on. Each fan would only be like 10db and the airflow should work i think. Also comes into the budget nicely, ~£130 or so for the card and ~£30-40 for fans.
!