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JBA's tips for budget quietness

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here are a few things i've done to make my machine quiet... not in the realm of the quiet freaks over at silentpcreview.com, but just a few things that have achieved a good result with minimal effort and $...


1) detach yr hard drives from the case somehow. i have an antec soho tower case which has removable cages for the hd's, so i stuck rubber mounts on the bottom and now the cage sits on the bottom of the case. quiet! plenty of other methods exist - you can suspend hd's with elastic in a 5 1/4 drive bay or even just put 'em on some foam on the bottom of the case. or butcher an old case and get the hd cage from that!


2) get yr 80mm case fans running at ~1000 rpm (slower for larger fans).. 2 slower fans is better than 1 running at double the speed. get a speed controller, or if you havent got much $ you could even do the 7v trick on a 2000rpm fan and get about 1200rpm or so (don't do this for more than a couple of fans total, or it could hurt yr psu, so i've read).


3) go to the hardware store and get some small rubber o-rings. use these as washers to stop case fans from coming into contact with the case. get screws that are long enough so you can put an o-ring between the screw head and the case, and on the other side put one between the case and the fan.


(note that the o-rings work well for fans, but when used to mount a hard drive they seemed to amplify the high pitched whine that nearly all 7200rpm drives emit).


4) If your case is sitting on a hard surface, get some think foam and put a bit at the front and a bit at the rear so the case has a spongy base which doesnt transmit vibrations.


these 4 things have taken my machine from being sort-of quiet (not loud, but not that quiet either), to being very quiet, and basically silent from the other side of the room (about 4 metres).


total cost $35:


- about $4 for the rubber mounts that my hd cage sits on.


- 2000rpm case fans were $6 each (x2) and a pci slot backplate mounted speed controller for 2 fans was $14.


- a box of 230 o-rings of various sizes was $5 at the hardware store.


- i had the foam already, but surely only a few $ if you had to buy it.


my case already has 3 80mm fans controlled by the power supply, which speeds them up and slows them down based on how much power is drawn from the psu (these are 2600rpm, usually running at :)




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