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[QUIET!!!] ATX Mid-Tower Case

Last response: in Components
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What is better

Total: 12 votes (7 blank votes)

  • Antec Three Hundred with dampening foam & rubber mounts
  • 0 %
  • Random case under $80 advertised as silent
  • 0 %
  • Fractal R3 Silent Case
  • 100 %
May 5, 2012 12:45:57 PM

Rquirements
-ASUS P7P55D-E ATX Motherboard compatibly
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
-space for 2-3 case fans (1 rear fan for CPU, 1 side fan for GPU) (1 top fan optional)
-AS QUIET AS POSSIBLE (most important)
-less holes is better. I don't want random gaps and fans slots in the case leaking sound
-It would be nice if the case was specifically made to be silent, but not required

My 3 fans (noctua) are all under 12 dba, but my current aluminium case (NZXT GAMMA Classic) is super thin, vibrates way too much (even with rubber mountings on everything), and has too many holes. I do not care what material the case is made of or how ugly it is. Maximum budget $80.

Here are some cases that look sturdy and quiet. Please comment and suggest others
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Would there be much of a difference between a sturdy case like the Antec Three Hundred with dampening foam and rubber mounts versus a specialized silent case like the Fractal R3?
a b ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 12:57:33 PM

I voted for the R3.

Do you mean you would yourself apply dampening materials on the Antec?
May 5, 2012 12:59:07 PM

Yes. I'd like to keep it cheap so I'd only get the R3 if there is a significant difference (10dba) in noise levels.
Related resources
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:03:15 PM

You'll spend nearly as much on your mod choices as you would on the R3 unless you already have the dampening materials. Go for the R3.
May 5, 2012 1:06:00 PM

Rugger said:
You'll spend nearly as much on your mod choices as you would on the R3 unless you already have the dampening materials. Go for the R3.

I do have all the materials
May 5, 2012 1:09:52 PM

whatsthatnoise said:
High quality with optional high airflow case: Corsair 550D

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

It's more expansive, but worth every cent ;) 

Same situation as Fractal R3. I would only buy this is there is a significant improvement over a normal sturdy case with less fan openings and dampening material.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:10:14 PM

spandexninja said:
I do have all the materials

If you have the materials, then save the money, spend some time and do some modding! A lot more rewarding and you're likely to do as good a job or better at noise isolation.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:14:02 PM

spandexninja said:
Same situation as Fractal R3. I would only buy this is there is a significant improvement over a normal sturdy case with less fan openings and dampening material.

You're not going to find a case that will meet your 10db requirement to spend more on the case. That level of noise reduction would require significant reductions from components inside the case. You're already replacing the case fans and I'm going to assume that the rest of your components are near silent, too.
May 5, 2012 1:17:03 PM

Rugger said:
You're not going to find a case that will meet your 10db requirement to spend more on the case. That level of noise reduction would require significant reductions from components inside the case. You're already replacing the case fans and I'm going to assume that the rest of your components are near silent, too.

I mean if a regular case with dampening had 35dba and a Fractal R3 had 25dba or less, then I would consider buying the R3
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:22:08 PM

The difference between achieving near-silent and silent is significant although the db between the two is not. A few suggestions:
1. Mod the case with the dampening material,
2. Cover any unused fan ports and use a fan controller to reduce fan speeds/noise,
3. Minimize the number of fans actually in the case,
4. Isolate the disk drives. Use an SSD in the PC, but setup a network drive (maybe a NAS or a small network server) for the mass storage and place it in another room.
5. Get a fanless PSU
6. Get a fanless HSF for your CPU and/or the GPU.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:24:54 PM

spandexninja said:
I mean if a regular case with dampening had 35dba and a Fractal R3 had 25dba or less, then I would consider buying the R3

It's still based on a noise source inside the case. The way to silence a PC is by eliminating the noise sources....at least that's the most effective way of reducing noise.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:27:40 PM

What is the PC being used for? What are your other noise makers (i.e. CPU HSF, GPU HSF, how many disk drives, PSU)?
a b ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:27:43 PM

As long as you put a dedicated GPU into your PC, it will always be at least 25dBA under load.

Silentpcreview are testing silent cases (and hardware in general), I linked the tables that compare several cases. You should consider reading the whole article if you are interested in a particular case, though.

Corsair 550D
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1255-page7.html

Antec P280
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1229-page6.html

They always test with a HD4870, which is good for testing, because horribly power inefficient > high temp > high cooling required > high noise to dampen.
May 5, 2012 1:43:34 PM

The goal is to make my PC near silent when I'm sleeping at night. I have 3 case fans, but at night I turn these off (so only the only sources of noise are my silent power supply, my near silent CPU cooler, my hard drive, and the 7850 that I plan to buy).

I need the case to block whatever sound I have at night. And I'm wondering if a normal case with dampening will be enough to do this.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 1:48:05 PM

Noise will still be able to escape...if you can have airflow in/out, then noise can escape. The 7850 fan(s) can be controlled with a program like speedfan. You should be able to control the CPU cooler with Speedfan or a fan controller. If the grommets/isolating hardware on your HDDs isn't working, then there are ways to actually suspend them to further isolate them from the case.

The other completely silent option is to turn the PC off...
May 5, 2012 2:25:46 PM

I'm not going for a silent pc... only one that is quiet when every case fan is turned off.

I just need to know if the extra noise reduction from a specialized noise reduction case is worth the price.
a c 158 ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 2:29:59 PM

IMO - If you're doing some silencing yourself, then no.
a b ) Power supply
May 5, 2012 2:46:01 PM

spandexninja said:
I'm not going for a silent pc... only one that is quiet when every case fan is turned off.

I just need to know if the extra noise reduction from a specialized noise reduction case is worth the price.



Case Fans are by far the least thing you should be worrying about. You have to realize that the heat comes from mainly two sources, which is CPU and GPU. If you turn off case fans, the CPU and GPU fan have to do more work on their own. Resulting in even higher noise from the already highest noise sources. Low running case fans will allow the CPU and GPU fan to spin lower, resulting in less overall system noise.

You can slow down the GPU and CPU fans with software like SPEEDFAN and AFTERBURNER, when the system is idle to keep RPM/noise down... and run your case fans at 5V.

A silent case is definitely worth the money if you want a quiet system. The Fractal Design Define R3 is probably the best bang for the buck in your case.
a b ) Power supply
May 6, 2012 4:59:10 PM

one more thumps up for r3.
May 10, 2012 3:05:32 AM

Thanks for the help. I ended up buying an Antec P280 for $80 since it seemed comparable to the R3 and looked like a good deal.
!