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The most silent PSU for my i7 PC + possible upgrade to SLI

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December 30, 2012 5:05:31 PM

Hello,

I have searched on forums the answer to my questions but I failed, so I am now writing a new post.
If my answer lies somewhere else, I am grateful if you redirect me there.

I have the following PC configuration in mind and I don't know which PSU to use:
  • Intel i7 3770
  • ASUS P8Z77-V
  • CORSAIR Vengeance Low Profile DDR3 16 GB / 1600 MHz [2 x 8 GB] KIT CL10 1,5 V (open to suggestions)
  • Samsung 250 GB SSD (open to suggestions)
  • EVGA GeForce GTX 670 4 GB Superclocked
  • Antec Three Hundred Two ATX Mid Tower (open to suggestions)
  • 1 x optical drive
  • Windows 7

    A possible upgrade to this machine is:
  • +1 EVGA GeForce GTX 670 4 GB Superclocked
  • +1 HDD
  • +2 x 8 GB RAM (to have in total 32 GB)

    The main expectations I have for this system (except performance) are to be as quiet as possible and as "invisible" as possible.
    I do not like flashy LEDs or cases that look like they were made at a scrapyard.
    I am neither interested in water cooling nor in overclocking.

    I need a power supply that can support this system with the mentioned upgrades and to be as quiet as possible. I don't care if it's modular or not.

    I noticed that Corsair has some PSUs which can stop their fan completely (AX and GS series).
    The AX series are quite expensive and I don't know if I need such an expensive PSU.
    The GS series have some LEDs, but they can be turned off. The price is also attractive and the fan has 3 settings: stopped, silent, full cooling power.
    Someone on a forum suggested the TX series, as being better than GS, but they do not stop the fan completely, so I'm not that interested.

    My question is: Does the Corsair GS800 provide enough power for my (upgraded) system? Or is it more than enough?
    Do you have other suggestions for the quietest PSU for my system?

    Thank you!
  • More about : silent psu upgrade sli

    December 30, 2012 5:48:56 PM

    If I were you I wouldn't worry too much about the PSU making a lot of noise. Nevertheless, a GS800 could work but just to be on the safe side I'd recommend an HX 850.
    a b ) Power supply
    December 30, 2012 5:58:35 PM

    just bought a corsair ax860i

    not cheap--but i never skimp on the psu

    and a 7 year warranty

    had it in 2 days now--and the fan on the psu hasnt turned on once

    fantastic piece of kit

    Related resources
    December 30, 2012 6:05:15 PM

    The 670 is going to be much, much louder than any name brand PSU you decide to use. Unless you use watercooling on your Graphics card its going to be at LEAST 2x as loud as your PSU.
    a c 137 ) Power supply
    December 30, 2012 6:14:34 PM

    The psu is generally low on the list of noise generators on a pc.

    For a quiet rig, first, buy a quiet case.
    Do some research at www.silentpcreview.com
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article75-page1.html
    For a full ATX case, look at the silverstone FT02, or the Antec P280 for starters.
    I can vouch for the silverstone TJ08E as a good cooling and quiet M-ATX case, but you are probably limited to a single good graphics card.
    My plan for a graphics upgrade will be to replace my GTX680 with the next generation single card.

    The graphics card will be the noisiest part of your rig.
    The GTX670 is a fine card for a single monitor. It is likely to be as quiet as any other top card when installed in a case.
    I would not pay the premium for a 4gb version.
    Read this:
    http://www.pugetsystems.com/labs/articles/Video-Card-Pe...

    With today's availability of graphics cards, I would do an upgrade by selling the GTX670 and replacing it with a GTX690.
    The single card is essentially two GTX680 cards in sli on one card. The power requirements and cooling requirements will be less, and it will be quieter.
    More likely, your upgrade in the futute will be to aGTX7xx card or an amd 8xxx card.

    On the psu, look for a Gold or platinum rated psu.
    They are more efficient, and Seasonic X series which I recommend, even warns you to not be concerned if the fan does not move. It will, only if it needs to.
    I have never heard mine yet.

    Another source of noise is the cpu cooler. Look at the Noctua NH-D14 or the phanteks coolers. they are quiet and efficient.
    Not that a 3770 needs special cooling.
    It is only the "K" series that need extra cooling when overclocked more than about 4.3.

    Your ram is good. If you are only gaming, 8gb is fine. But ram is cheap, and there is no negative to 16gb.
    More ram helps 64 bit enabled apps like photoshop.
    If you ever go to 32gb, you will need windows 7 pro or ultimate.

    Samsung 240gb is good, 830/840/840 pro are all good.
    Equally good is Intel 330 or 335 series.

    I think I would pay a slight premium for a "K" suffix cpu, even if I had no plans for overclocking.
    A 5% price premium is small compared to a 25% gain from a conservative overclock.
    You may change your mind about overclocking, or whenever you sell the cpu, a "K" will fetch much more.
    December 30, 2012 8:34:20 PM

    Thank you all for your replies!

    I have updated my configuration:
  • Intel i7 3770K
  • Noctua NH-C14 / NH-D14 CPU Cooler (which one is more quiet?)
  • ASUS P8Z77-V
  • 4 x 8GB CORSAIR Vengeance Low Profile DDR3 (in total 32 GB, will start with 16 GB and upgrade later if needed)
  • Samsung 250 GB SSD
  • 1 HDD (will buy in future)
  • ASUS GeForce GTX 670 DirectCU II 2GB (one of the most silent in it's range)
  • 1 x optical drive
  • Windows 7
  • ATX case (I am considering the recommendations and still open to other suggestions)
  • PSU (open to suggestions)

    Which CPU cooler you recommend from these 2? I checked the specs and C14 seems more quiet.
    I tried to find a Seasonic PSU, but it's not that easy on Amazon (FR, DE, ES, IT). Do you have any recommendations?

    mcnumpty23, I read on internet that the Corsair PSUs with the 0 RPM tech have some design problems. Even with the system idle, the cooler of the PSU spins up to 100% from time to time for 2-3 seconds and it's very loud @ 100%. How about the AX860i? It does the same?
    a b ) Power supply
    December 31, 2012 8:24:29 AM

    the fan hasnt spun up at all since i put in the ax860i--no 100% from time to time for 2-3 seconds

    highest temperature i have seen on the link software has been 33c for the psu

    so not hot enough i guess to spin it

    have tried prime95 on my 2600k at 5ghz

    still didnt draw enough power from it to trip the fan

    tried unigine graphics benchmark on my 7970 ghz edition

    still didnt start the fan spinning

    guess i would have to run both at once to make it spin

    guessing i may need to draw 350w plus to make it spin

    going by the corsair link software i am drawing 90w in idle

    will have to muck about later to see if i can make it spin up


    edit--managed to spin up the fan by running prime95 and msi kombustor together

    drew about 400w and the fan only spun to 500rpm



    December 31, 2012 3:05:52 PM

    Indeed it's a very good price, but I do not live in US and newegg does not ship internationally.
    Unfortunately, in Europe, Amazon is selling this starting at 154 EURO (~204 USD), but I might have no choice.

    I checked comparisons between Noctua NH-C14 and D14 and the D14 seems to have a more logical air flow, so I will go with the Noctua NH-D14.

    Regarding the case, SilverStone FT02 is very interesting, but overpriced for a tin box.
    I think that Fractal Design Arc Midi is better suited for my needs and better priced (starts from 78 EUR vs FT02 @ 192 EUR). I also checked Fractal Design Core 3000 which is slightly cheaper (55 EUR), but I think I might have to squeeze my system there, especially the CPU cooler. The Arc Midi seems better built and more spacious.
    I am considering Antec Three Hundred Two, but for the moment is out of stock on Amazon Eu sites.

    About PSU, I am considering SeaSonic X750 (155 EUR) and Corsair AX760 (165 EUR). I tried to consider Corsair HX, TX and GS series, but I read that their smart cooling system is not that smart and it spins up the cooler @ 100% from time to time, without any reason.
    Are PSUs @ 750W enough for my system?

    Does any of you have better recommendations (case, PSU, cooler, etc.)? I need to have this computer as quiet as possible.

    P.S.: I wish you a Happy New Year!
    !