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Quiet CPU cooler recommendations

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January 13, 2004 3:14:56 PM

Having recently got ADSL, I've been leaving my 'puter on overnight frequently... problem is my CPU cooler's a Volcano 7+.. so even on LOW it's just too damn loud for my poor eardrums (It's in the same room as my bed).

So, anyone got any suggestions for something a bit less ear-bashing? Is it worth just replacing the cooler altogether, or do you think I should get a 70-92mm adaptor and just replace the fan? I've had a brief look for one of those adaptors but with not much luck (I live in the UK, so most US sites are not an option).

I would need something that cools reasonably well, as my PC is overclocked and I don't want to sacrifice any performance.

Current system:
Epox 8RDA+ rev 1.0
XP1700+ @~2.26Ghz(196x11.5), 1.575Vcore

So nothing that needs the mobo mounting holes, as my mobo doesn't have them :frown:

Thanks

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<font color=red>Those of you who think you know everything are annoying to those of us who do.</font color=red> :wink:
January 13, 2004 4:24:27 PM

One of the best out there, taking noise, price and performance into consideration, has to be one of the following two Zalman models:

<A HREF="http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/cnps7000a-alcu...." target="_new">http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/cnps7000a-alcu....;/A>

<A HREF="http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/cnps7000a-cu.ht..." target="_new">http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/cnps7000a-cu.ht...;/A>


<i>/Copenhagen - Clockspeed will make the difference... in the end</i> :cool:
January 13, 2004 7:51:03 PM

What you need is a more efficient heatsink. <A HREF="http://www.overclockers.com" target="_new">Overclockers.com</A> have a nice <A HREF="http://www.overclockers.com/articles373/socketA.asp" target="_new">socketA heatsink ranking</A> which you might like to consult. The Thermaltake Volcano 7+ scores 0.3 but with a 71dB/A fan on it you might as well move your bedroom to the highway. Right next to it is the Vantec Aeroflow, it also scores 0.3 and the TMD fan is reasonably quiet. Better still might be the Thermal Transtech Heatpipe if you can get one.

<A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/myanandtech.html?member=114979" target="_new">My PCs</A> :cool:
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January 13, 2004 9:36:03 PM

IMO i think that the aero 7+ is a great hsf and it is quiet at med setting.



My own beast: Athlon 2700xp+ (oc: 3200xp+ with 200fsb) , Radeon 9800pro (oc: 410/370) , 512mb ddr400. SO MUCH faster than my last computer (pIII 550......)
January 13, 2004 10:06:30 PM

I know its expensive, but have you thought of water cooling? Im thinking of buying one of the asetek waterchill kits:
<A HREF="http://www.asetek.com" target="_new">http://www.asetek.com&lt;/A>
They are avaliable at <A HREF="http://www.overclockers.co.uk" target="_new">http://www.overclockers.co.uk&lt;/A> who should be getting some more in soon.
I know its not exactly a great answer to you problem at £150+ but maybe you could think of investing in one in the future...would be great for overclocking.

[Insert witty comment here]
January 13, 2004 10:09:18 PM

Count me as a fan (pun intended) of the Zalman.
January 14, 2004 2:44:53 AM

I have the Vantec Aeroflow on my athlon right now and its not too loud for my ears but I have a stock AMD cooler I'm going to try out and see if its quieter.
I dont o/c so its not a big deal if my temps go up.

You could probably find a stock athlon cooler anywhere. I got mine from a friend who bought a retail 2500+ and used an aftermarket HS. I dont know if its much quieter than the vantec but I'll get back to you on that.

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Yeah, thats right. I support the NV/AMD/IBM axis of evil.
January 14, 2004 5:26:53 AM

Heard very good things about Spire/Speeze Falconrock II. The stock fan is almost silent but it is not good enough for overclocking. Try a variety of 80mm fans.

The FR2 is available in the UK. Not sure of the price there but it's only $12 in the USA.

<b>56K, slow and steady does not win the race on internet!</b>
January 14, 2004 1:06:15 PM

Thanks for all the responses guys..

Some more thoughts:

How about a spire WhisperRock? from <A HREF="http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?action=info&AvdID=1&..." target="_new">here</A>? Seems similar to the FalconRock but even less noisy.

If it's rated up to XP3200+, then will it not be adequate for my oc'd XP? since I'm only running slightly faster than a stock 3200+, and at 1.575V IIRC slightly lower Vcore (IIRC - 3200 is 1.6Vcore?) than a 3200+, won't my chip be putting out around the same amount of heat? Any thoughts on this?

regarding Watercooling, I've been considering it for a while, but money's just too tight at the mo. In about 6 months or so I'm planning on a new build/complete overhaul, and I'm going to probably go for H20 then for both the overclocking and noise benefits.

As far as the Zalman goes, I quite like the look and specs, but I'd need to doctor the HS to get it to fit on my mobo (according to Zalman's Site), plus it's twice the price of the one I linked to above. Is it worth the extra? any opinions on that?

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<font color=red>Those of you who think you know everything are annoying to those of us who do.</font color=red> :wink:
January 14, 2004 1:31:34 PM

Would it not be possible to just replace the fan on your curent heatsink? If its 80mm You could just get one of those quiet Panaflo Ones and uses that. Or you could drop the voltage on your current fan to 7v.

<A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k1=6752830" target="_new">Yay, I Finally broke the 12k barrier!!</A>
January 14, 2004 2:05:40 PM

It's 70MM IIRC. Not sure what the Voltage is, but I've already got the bundled switch on the LOW setting, so it's probably around there already.

It's not too loud when I'm actually sat in front of it with music playing, or when gaming. It's just if I want to leave it downloading anything when I go to bed... or if I want to leave it playing some music quietly I need to turn the volume up much higher than I'd like to drown out the fan. I'd ideally like to stick a 92mm Fan on it with a 70-92mm adaptor or something, but I can't find anything other than a 60-80mm adaptor.

I'm considering creating my own adaptor out of some sheet metal, but I'm quite lazy really. :smile:

I'm fairly sure that When I silence the CPU fan it'll simply highlight how noisy all the other fans are, but I thought I'd start with the loudest and work downwards. :eek: 

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<font color=red>Those of you who think you know everything are annoying to those of us who do.</font color=red> :wink:
January 14, 2004 2:50:50 PM

Many of Spire's HSF's use the same heatsink. They just swap different fans for different performance levels.

IIRC the WhisperRock uses the same heatsink as the original Falconrock. The FR2 is a little larger and a little more efficient. (I'm talking about the heatsink only).

Dansdata.com claimed that the FR2 performs on par with the Thermalright SLK800 when the same fan was used on each. Of course, that was using aftermarket fans ranging from 53 CFM to 85 CFM. Dansdata never tested both heatsinks using the FR2's stock fan.

You could try either HSF since you say your CPU is running very low voltage. Be warned though, I've read posts by a few people where they are getting close to 60 degrees C with either HSF and their repective stock fans.

I would consider getting one of the above heatsinks but with a better fan, though not too powerful, and using simple speed control. Perhaps you can find a fan that is just a little more powerful at full speed and a little quiet at slow speed than the stock fans.

You could even underclock your CPU at night and run the fan at very slow speeds.

You don't need a full speed system for file transfers. (I'm assuming that's what it is doing at night).

OT
I'm jealous of your XP1700+. Mine needs 2.15 volts to run at 2.250 ghz.

I had to settle for 2.1 Ghz and 1.80 volt.

<b>56K, slow and steady does not win the race on internet!</b>
January 14, 2004 4:52:15 PM

Zalman also sells a rheostat for CPU fans, it's about $7 I think.
January 14, 2004 5:12:03 PM

Thanks, I'll probably buy one of them then, as they're only ~£14 or so.

I thought about underclocking for the 'graveyard shift' But Can't be bothered to mess with it that often.

The only gripe I have with my 1700+ is the fact that I can't squeeze any more speed out of it, even with up to 1.9V, and I'm unwilling to try any higher than that.... And my Rev1 8RDA+ runs out of FSB room at 196Mhz, so I can't play with that either.. I keep meaning to get a better HS on the northbridge & stick something on the southbridge to help, but as I said earlier, I'm lazy. :smile:

I Guess I shouldn't complain though really, saved myself a good few 100s of £s on that one :cool:

Thanks again...

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<font color=red>Those of you who think you know everything are annoying to those of us who do.</font color=red> :wink:
January 14, 2004 7:07:32 PM

Mine does 2.083 (2600+) at 1.65v, so Im pretty happy. Im currently limited by multiplier and FSB (no PCI/AGP lock on SiS 745 Chipset). BTW is there any way to unlock higher multipliers using a wire trick. I dont really want to cut any bridges, since I'll probably be upgrading soon.

<A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k1=6752830" target="_new">Yay, I Finally broke the 12k barrier!!</A>
January 14, 2004 7:10:30 PM

I bought an SK-7 a little while back for about £25. That was a good upgrade from my all aluminium coolermaster HS because I can now use a generic 80MM fan at 7 volt, which is close to silent. As a 2000+ I would get temps of 36/39 and as a 2600+ at a higher voltage I run at 41/45 which isnt too bad.

<A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k1=6752830" target="_new">Yay, I Finally broke the 12k barrier!!</A>
January 15, 2004 2:04:22 AM

Assuming your processor is not locked there are plenty of wire mods that can done to access the higher multipliers. They can be done on the back of the CPU, in the CPU socket, or on the back of your motherboard.

Search these forums for "wire" and "mods".

<b>56K, slow and steady does not win the race on internet!</b>
!