quiet 60mm fan
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uzziah

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note: PARTIALLY solved. (ps: you can still be my friend if you forego my tedious text below
)

i have an old dell optiplex gx1 pc that i got as a freebee from my university (cu boulder).

PIII 450mhz
256mb ram

the cpu is a slot-type and it only has a 60mm fan cooling it. it is the only fan in the entire computer. the pc is noisy because of that fan, and much more so: the hard drive. i'm going to replace the hard drive with a 7200rpm 160gb drive (my current music collection is only 40gb FLAC), and i'm trying to figure a way to quiet the fan-noise. i tried my zalman fanmate on it, but it won't fit in the connection on the motherboard (their all 3-pin connectors, but the one on the mobo has some plastic connection around the 3-pins that my zalman fanmate won't fit in).

so: what can i do?

thinking:
1. replace fan with a quieter one (i think it's 60mm. it's very small)
2. get some sort of connector so i can get the zalman fanmate to work with the mobo socket
3. or both

thoughts?
 
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uzziah

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oh yeah, the whole point of all this is to use it as a music player. i'm picking up a quiet hdd cheap, and i'm going to mod and install an emu 0404. from there i've got a number of audio upgrades to do to make it jump.

the PIII and 256mb ram has worked fine as a web-surfer, and i'm sure it will run foobar with no problems, since it won't be doing anything else. i just want it silent so i can have it on all the time and play lotsa music!


i may try to ghetto-rig some larger fan on there if i can, but that seems like it would be difficult any other ideas? wow, i just had one, maybe cut a hole in the side of the case and mount the fan there (current fan is mounted to the funky heatsink on the socket-cpu). but then i still have the problem of attatching the zalman fanmate to the mobo. so that's problem number 1. if it's still not quiet with the current fan turned all the way down, i'll try another one or some other options.
 
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uzziah

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ok: i removed the old 6gb hdd that was in there. that was definitely creating the majority of the noise, but the little cpu fan is definitely too noisy as well. not bad, but not quiet enough to just leave it. the whole "open up the case and put a bigger fan there" is out as well; just not enough space. so; any thoughts on an adapter i can get to let the zalman work? i'd like to try to remove the plastic around the 3-pin on the mobo, but i'm worried i could break something if i try: if i could do that the fanmate could go right on. i'm going to try a little ghetto-prying!
 
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uzziah

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victory! lol! it kills me when i do this: ask a million questions and then answer it myself


i just took some needlenose pliers to the plastic around the 3-pin connector and twisted it until i broke off enough to get the fanmate on. got it connected to mobo and cpu-fan and cranked it all the way down. big improvement in noise level. still....i'd like it even quieter.....any thoughts on a quiet (and cheap) 60mm fan? i'll have to see how much noise my new hdd makes. i'm just running bios right now and i'll just monitor temps for awhile make sure it will be stable with this reduction in cpu-fan rpm. should be ok, though. depending on what hdd i get, the hdd noise might drown out the cpu-fan anyway. i'd like a samsung drive, but it looks like i can land a western digital cavier 160gb for $30 or so. it got pretty good reviews for being quiet: hope that's correct. i suppose my next task would be getting a remote control so i can control the pc from accross the room: it's a 17" monitor, and if i just crank the font size up (somehow), i should be able to read it somehow. it's nice to have so many options because it's not my primary computer. nice to be able to break-crap off the mobo because it's free
 
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lordgibbness

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check out silentpcreview's website.
 
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uzziah

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oops: one more noisemaker: the psu fan. neglected to thnk of that. luckily i forgot it for a good reason: it's not very loud
. i could probably open it up and change it, but it's obvious that dell didn't really intend me to do so
at any cost, i think i'll be ok as things are right now. i'm suprised that this pc only has a cpu-fan and psu-fan in it. good for me, though. the heatsink seems to be doing it's job well as it gets nice and hot when the pc is on. the old-school bios doesn't even have heat-sensoring, but she hasn't shut down on me yet
why am i talking to myself?
 
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sgrossklass

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With WD you never know what you get. A current production drive will be fairly quiet, but you do not want a ball bearing equipped older model. Better stick with Samsung (either a 5400 rpm or 8 meg 7200 rpm model), Hitachi or Seagate.

As for the fan noise, people have replaced smallish fans with 80mm ones fastened /somehow/ in the past. Ah, you write there's not enough space. Then maybe a "wind tunnel" (air guide) to the PSU would be an option?

BTW, it was perfectly normal for a comp to only have a PSU and a CPU fan in those days.
 
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SockMan!

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Quote:

With WD you never know what you get. A current production drive will be fairly quiet, but you do not want a ball bearing equipped older model. Better stick with Samsung (either a 5400 rpm or 8 meg 7200 rpm model), Hitachi or Seagate.


Any newer hard drive will be significantly quieter than older ball-bearing ones. However, any hard drive new or old may make significantly less noise by decoupling it from the case (via rubber washers, suspension by rubber bands, ect). You'll need to make sure it has proper ventilation though since decoupling it also prevents the drive from using the case as a heatsink. Your results may vary, but I find that adding a quiet fan along with a decoupled old hard drive results in far less noise than if I mounted the drive directly to the case without a fan.


Anyway, you might find sleeve bearing fans tend to have less bearing noise, so that might be the way to go if you're looking for quieter fans that are fairly cheap (hydro and rifle bearings are derivatives of sleeve bearing and should be similar in terms of noise). Sleeve bearing fans get flak for being 'less reliable' than ball bearings, but they should last a while regardless. The main concern is that sleeve bearing fans die quietly rather than make grinding noise like ball bearings do.

However, the more effective approach is to use slower fans; though you do have to make sure that your computer is still running cool enough. You may also want to replace the fan in your power supply if you're not timid about opening it up and soldering in a new fan.
 
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funnytimes

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perhaps a 60mm to 80mm fan adapter? not sure if those add any sound (even though the product descriptions claim they add virtually no noise). quiet 60mm fans are pretty rare, but quiet 80mm fans are widely available.
 
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cetoole

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There are no quiet 60mm fans that I know of that move a decent amount of air, if you modded the case to have a 120mm nexus fan or something similar and ducted it, that would probably be the best solution.
 
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dwc

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I just modded my pc to make some sound improvements. Initially the vibration of the hard drive was being transmitted and amplified by the case itself, and i was using bungee cords and some foam to keep the case sides from vibrating.

Rather than using bungees and suspending the HD up in the 5 1/4 drive area I wanted to keep the hd low near the front intake vents. I removed the HD cage from the pc (drilled out the rivets) and cut the cage down with a dremel to make it shorter. Then I put the hd back in the cage and attached the cage to the bottom of the case near the front with strips of velcro and foam tape. So the layers of foam tape and velco insulate the case from the HD's vibration. The HD is still near the bottom of the case with airflow over and under it so it will keep cool. It's also still attached to the remaining bits of cage which help dissipate heat some.

I also removed two of the three case fans and put the remaining fan in the rear of the case and taped off a few vents to make sure the air flows in from the vents in the front. I attached the remaining case fan with zip ties and foam betwen the fan and case.

Overall the PC is much quieter with the same drive, the case vibration problem is resolved. I still get fan noise but I can live with it. I think the main fan noise is from the vga card fan and the cpu fan. Mobo and cpu temps are about the same as before when i was running three case fans.

Anyway hope that helps. If you can "float" your hard drive in some way it might make a big difference.
-Dan
 
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sgrossklass

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Quote:

Originally Posted by dwc
Rather than using bungees and suspending the HD up in the 5 1/4 drive area I wanted to keep the hd low near the front intake vents. I removed the HD cage from the pc (drilled out the rivets) and cut the cage down with a dremel to make it shorter. Then I put the hd back in the cage and attached the cage to the bottom of the case near the front with strips of velcro and foam tape. So the layers of foam tape and velco insulate the case from the HD's vibration. The HD is still near the bottom of the case with airflow over and under it so it will keep cool. It's also still attached to the remaining bits of cage which help dissipate heat some.


That's quite similar to the HD mounting used in my secondary comp, except I didn't need to use a dremel. I used pieces of foam from my LG DVD burning packaging (somewhat soft and glossy, PE/PP?) - that stuff is brilliant. It's no more than 2 cm or so thick, but the access noise of a Cheetah 36ES is reduced to 2.5"-ish levels - seriously - and can be hard to make out. You can tell I was pretty much floored when I heard this - or rather didn't hear it.
I currently don't have any HD suspension in my main rig, due to plain lack of screws (metric threads, no problem here, but 6-32 UNC?).
 
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MD1032

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I had to do this to my Dell 4550. I simply put a resistor I think between the positive and the RPM controller wire (the outer wires, middle one can just sit there) and soldered it on there, then I bought a fan controller/thermal monitor combo, slapped that in one of my floppy bays, and replaced the fan with a Panaflo H1A (all Panaflo fans are great quality, you'll probably only need an M1A) that runs to the fan controller where I can control it.
 
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