What is a good, quiet 120mm case fan that works well in an Antec P280? I plan to install one intake fan right now in the front of the case (P280 doesn't come with front fans, only mounting space), and maybe upgrade the other fans if the Antec brand fans are not quite doing the job.
Should I just go with another Antec 120mm fan, or is there a better model? Can be pwm, but doesn't have to be.
I would definitely go with the COUGAR fans. As i just recently switched all my fans from Antec Tricool 120 fans to COUGAR 120 PWM fans.
The COUGAR fan at 1000RPM is like airflow of the Antec Tricool set to high (2000RPM), with the loise level of it set to low (1200RPM).
Even when i turn my computer on and the fans go full blast for about 5 seconds, i am so use to the turbine sound of the Antec fans that i look in the computer to make sure the fans are spinning.
I have to warn you though, if you plan on using them in the roof of the case, all 3 COUGAR fans i have make a grinding noise when i turned them horizontally which seems to be a known issue acknowledged by COUGAR.
My motherboard came with 6 fan headers so all my fans are controlled by the motherboard with temp ranges set in the BIOS to crank them up if things get too hot. I normally have the fans set to 6V for low and 12V for high. My motherboard also came with software to control the fan speeds on the fly manually. I keep the 120s at 9v, about 1100RPM and the 140 at 1200RPM. Any higher then i start to hear them but im in a very quite room and the computer is only 1 foot away.
HAF 912 Advanced
2 CoolerMaster 200 Megaflow
2 COUGAR 120 black PWM
1 COUGAR 140 black
thundervore do you run the fans with a controller?
Wait a sec....you have 4 set to intake....so, you have 2 in the front bay (right behind the door where there are mounts but no stock fans included), and 2 in the top (replacing the stock Antec fans), with 1 fan in the rear exhausting? Where do you put a sixth fan in that case, on the hard drive cage mount facing inside the case?
Also, what do you think about replacing the stock Noctua fans on an NH-U12P SE2 with Cougar 120mm? Is there something to be gained here by going PWM on the heat sink fans (the Noctua fans are not PWM), even quieter, better cooling, etc.?
I have two Cougars for intake behind the door, two behind those (after HDD cage) and two now attached to a 240 radiator replacing the Gelids that came in the EK watercooling kit. ( Gelids chopped the air compared to the Cougars ). The Antec 2-Way are extremely quiet but move absolutly no air. The cougar on low 800 rpm, push more air than the Antec 2-Way on high do. I did an amature dB test with my HTC Titan phone on 4 fans.
All recorded from around 12-18 inches away
-Cougars on low were ~19ish dB, high ~34ish dB
-Antec 3-Way on low were around ~17ish dB on medium ~29 dB and on high ~42 dB
-Gelid 120-1600 rpm on low (~6 volts 21 dB on high 37 dB ) note: they also sound like they were 'slapping' the air on low and high
-Antec 2-Way on low did not register (super quiet) and on high were ~19 dB but I could not feel air from 10 inches away even on high.
The Cougars were the dominant fans in all the tests. Albeit a small clicking sound is heard on low through high it is only audible from ~ 6-8 inches from the fan. With all the fans in the P280 ( 4 intake, 2 on radiator pushing out from the default location and one Gelid fan for the rear exhaust ) on low, I can still hear my waterpump over the fans, and they are pushing ALOT of air. Honestly the Antec 3-Ways, although loud, on Med are still a great fan, they just had alot of use on them ( purchased in 2009 ).
Hope this helps some, I know it was an amature assessment but I like quiet yet good air flow, and the Cougars came out on top.
Forgot to mention, I'm running one fan controller for the 4 intakes and one fan controller for the 2 on the rad and one exhaust. The controllers lowest setting is 40% (I haven't tested the volts, but I believe I found out it's around 5.7v @ 40%) and 11v @ 100%. I LOVE the option of having controll of each individual fan from the controllers. Having the motherboard control the fans makes for alot of nasty cables everywhere.
Im planning to use 5 tri cool 120 mm fans for the rear, evo coolmaster heat sink and front case. with all those do really need to have the two top exhaust fans running at all? Im not very enthusiastic about using the top case fans at all, if i were to i feel I would have to buy two more tri-cool to keep the PC quiet or keep the pre installed fans really low. I understand the top is meant to move warm air upwards which but do I really need it with a bottom mounted PSU pumping air the same direction as the rear case fan? Its not a gaming pc so it wont be hot
The system im planning to build is strictly a A-10 trinity no GPU no gaming, just watching Blu-Ray Movies and do home office work and music