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Cutting back on fans in the name of less noise?

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February 4, 2013 3:57:21 AM

Hey folks! So I'm hoping to put together my first gaming computer soon and I've been looking into cooling options. I've done plenty of research and understand the principles, but when it gets down to the nitty-gritty details of individual systems, it always seems to come down to a matter of personal choice, preference, and opinion.

So as someone who's never really built before, I was hoping to get some advice on the matter :) 

I've been advised to invest in a heat pipe CPU cooler rather than an in-box cooling solution (even though I don't plan to overclock). But my understanding is that such a cooler would be best paired with an exhaust(?) fan mounted on the side of the case behind the motherboard. Now, I'm also thinking about bottom, front, and side intakes, plus top and rear exhausts.

That's at least 7 fans. Even with a fan controller, that's gonna be a really loud computer, and I'm not too keen on that. So where do you think I could afford to cut back? I plan to use the computer for fairly high-end gaming. It will probably be a roughly $1000 build (hopefully a little less) and I'm thinking about an i5-3570 or an AMD FX-8350 and probably the Radeon HD 7870 or 7870 LE. No SLI/Crossfire. Pretty basic system, really.
February 4, 2013 4:13:18 AM

7 fans IMO is too much. I'm only using 1 front intake , 1 top exhaust and 1 rear exhaust fans and the system is pretty quiet. It depends on the type of fan u r getting and the speed that you are set.

With ur intended configuration, 3 fans is pretty much more then enough since you won't be Ocing ur CPU and won't be running SLI or cross fire.

The key is to have a good casing and practice good cable management so that air flow is optimized.

On the side note, it is personal preference but you can stick to the default CPU cooler if you are not planning to OC ur CPU.

Maybe all these savings can go towards getting a better graphic card if you desire.
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February 4, 2013 5:04:18 AM

look for micro center combo deals on there cpu and mb if your close to one. if your not going to sli your video card you can drop down to a mini atx mb. 8g dimms of ram is fine for a gaming system. look for cosair ps sales and video card sales.
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February 5, 2013 1:50:21 AM

ttcboy said:

On the side note, it is personal preference but you can stick to the default CPU cooler if you are not planning to OC ur CPU.

Maybe all these savings can go towards getting a better graphic card if you desire.


Thanks, ttc :)  Perhaps I will just stick with the in-box cooler, then. I'm a big fan of saving $$ =P

What about that bottom intake fan and behind-the-motherboard exhaust? Any thoughts on those?

As for spending those savings on a better card, do you think I should be investing in something of a higher calibre than the 7870 or 7870 LE? Or are you just saying that it's a good idea to spend savings on one's graphics card because it's such an important part of the system?
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February 5, 2013 1:55:39 AM

smorizio said:
look for micro center combo deals on there cpu and mb if your close to one. if your not going to sli your video card you can drop down to a mini atx mb. 8g dimms of ram is fine for a gaming system. look for cosair ps sales and video card sales.


Thanks, smorizio :)  I'm in Canada, where there are no micro centers, and MC doesn't ship here either :(  I'll still keep an eye out for combo deals though, for sure.

I think I'll stick with ATX just because it's such a standard form factor. Having never built before, I figure I should start with the most common and branch out from there.

For sure, though, I know 8GB of RAM is more than enough. I didn't plan on buying any more than that. But in terms of future-proofing the build, I figured it'd be nice to keep some extra DIMMs handy. Yet another reason to stick with ATX, I guess.
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Best solution

February 5, 2013 3:28:51 AM

SyntaxSocialist said:

What about that bottom intake fan and behind-the-motherboard exhaust? Any thoughts on those?


Bottom intake fan is good idea because cold air always sits at bottom and it will pump the fresh cold air inside the casing.

So far, i didn't see any casing with behind the motherboard exhaust.

Top and rear exhaust are must have because hot air rises to the casing top and these fans will push them out of ur casing.

If u want to know more details and in-depth, read these 2 articles from tom.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cooling-airflow-hea...

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cooling-air-pressur...


SyntaxSocialist said:

As for spending those savings on a better card, do you think I should be investing in something of a higher calibre than the 7870 or 7870 LE? Or are you just saying that it's a good idea to spend savings on one's graphics card because it's such an important part of the system?


7870 is a solid card but since you are going for single card solution and plan to use it on long run, it is always good to grab a card like 7950 to extend ur rig life a bit further.

Make sure u buy power supply from reputable brand and not to oversize it.
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February 5, 2013 3:42:21 AM

The fan noise comes down to the fans in question, not necessarily the number of them.
Get some good quality fans like Noctua NF-12's, and use some means to slow them down, bet you will never hear them.
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February 8, 2013 11:54:43 PM

Best answer selected by SyntaxSocialist.
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