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Thread: Quiet 120mm Fans

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    Quiet 120mm Fans

    I need to purcahse some fans for a new case, I need 4x120mm.

    Can anyone recommend the best for quietness - in my current case I had an Akasa 80mm Silent Fan - but it was far from it - standard cheap ones were ironically much quieter!

    Ideally would like at least two with Blue LEDs

    Thanks!

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    Pork & Beans Powerup Phage's Avatar
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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    Paging Pob255 !
    I had a similar question and he is the man with the answers. If he doesn't see this I'll see if I can dig out his previous replies.

    EDIT: Try this.http://forums.hexus.net/chassis-syst...ans-quiet.html
    There are others, but he also seems to recommend the sharkoons and the new Thermalrights.
    Last edited by Phage; 05-01-2010 at 12:13 PM.
    Society's to blame,
    Or possibly Atari.

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    I can recommend these antec ones. they are adjustable so you can set how quiet you want them. Have used them in my case and on my water cooling rig for years

    http://www.lambda-tek.com/components...&prodID=990370

    These where given a good review and because its scan you get free delivery

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?W...source=froogle

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    SPCR is the only site to visit

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    Scythe S-Flex fans are great.

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    For the ones you don't need LED, try those from the Scythe S-FLEX series. They have been receving good reviews and have versions from 800rpm to 1600rpm to suit your (silence/heat dissipation) needs.

    I am using a few and quite happy with them.

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    What you need are Yate Loons - cheap and very silent

    See here: http://www.specialtech.co.uk/spshop/...cat=878&page=1

    These are Yate loons rebadged as Nexus - gets the thumbs up from Silent Pc Review
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article63-page2.html

    The more expensive Noctua ones are also very good and fairly Widely available - Scan does em.

    For ones with blue leds, http://www.chilledpc.co.uk/shop/prod...roducts_id=128 - the quitest fan I've used

    Chilled PC sells a variety of fans inlcuding the silent Noctua ones

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    Quote Originally Posted by Phage View Post
    Paging Pob255 !
    I had a similar question and he is the man with the answers. If he doesn't see this I'll see if I can dig out his previous replies.

    EDIT: Try this.http://forums.hexus.net/chassis-syst...ans-quiet.html
    There are others, but he also seems to recommend the sharkoons and the new Thermalrights.
    Give me a chance, strangely enough, I've been testing fans all day. well that and tring to sort out our waste pipes.
    While I've not finished my fan tests/round up yet I can give you some good pointers.

    RPM is key, no matter how good the fan if the speed is high then it's going to be loud.
    A high speed Scythe S-FLEX while good quality will still be louder than a slow fan for half the price.
    However it'll also move more air.
    Speed = air flow = noise.

    Now there are some other factors to take into account, blade design, bareing, motor, construction material, width, size, etc, etc.
    These factors also have a bareing on the performance and noise, to varying degrees but tend to only come in to play after speed.

    Eg if the motor make a ticking noise, you'll not notice it on a 1600rpm fan as that's going to drown it out, on a 900rpm fan you will notice it as it'll be louder than the sound the blades make.

    What case is this for?
    Where are they going in the case?
    What are you trying to keep cool?
    How much are you willing to spend on a quiet pc?

    EDIT: I've just looked at your specs Great Eastern I remember thoes "Turbo" buttons, all they did was if turbo was off it slowed the clock speed down to 25/50 mhz and when "on" they ran at the correct 33/66mhz base clock speed.

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    Great Eastern (06-01-2010)

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    What case is this for?
    It is a Thermaltake V3

    Where are they going in the case?
    1 in the front, 1 in the back, and 1 or 2 on top, there's also a space for one on the bottom, but I'm not sure whether this would be necessary.

    What are you trying to keep cool?
    At the moment its a Pentium D 2.8, although I plan on upgrading this at some point this year. I'm changin the case now as my current one dates from 2005 or so and is a cheap thing with little air flow.

    How much are you willing to spend on a quiet pc?
    At the moment all I want to do is get some fans which dont sound like a helicopter taking off!!


    Will take a look at the link Phage posted and your review of fans which I see has been posted.

    EDIT: I've just looked at your specs Great Eastern I remember thoes "Turbo" buttons, all they did was if turbo was off it slowed the clock speed down to 25/50 mhz and when "on" they ran at the correct 33/66mhz base clock speed.
    They were rather misleading to those who didn't know the details behind them - I knew some people who thought when they enabled the Turbo their computer would suddenly run faster than their quoted clock speed!

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    If you're after quiet and don't mind paying the premium for it, the Noctua fans are great. Seriously, the CPU cooler in my desktop is noisier than the case fans (two Antecs at half-speed, two Noctuas at full speed)...

    I've also got a pair of them in a PVR (one heatsink fan, one case fan) -- no problems, and the noisiest part of that machine is the hard drive (!)

    That and they seem to be made at least decently well -- I've been using them for a couple of years and not seen a failure yet.

    Can't really argue with the price-performance ratio...

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    Decent review of various 120mm fans here:

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/coo...est-case-fan/1

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    If you mean this case?
    http://www.thermaltake.com/product_i...id=&parent_cp=

    Then it's yet another varient of the base chasis we've seen a lot from recently (still don't know the OEM )
    Must say TT has gone for a couple of odd options, namely:
    Screw holes for 120mm fans only.
    While there's a vent that could take a 120mm fan on the side there's no screw holes to fit one.
    The top two fan vents could fit 140mm fans but again only screw holes for 120mm
    TT has gone with a standard front/back screw in hard drive cage, rather than a 90degree railed cage. granted some prefur that for better air flow, personally I prefur the 90degree cage for eaiser access esp in mid tower sized cases.

    P.S. I would also look at the
    Akasa Freedom Xone http://www.akasa.com.tw/update.php?t...l=AK-BKXNE-01#
    NZXT M59 http://www.nzxt.com/products/m59/ (ok that may not be to your taste)
    CaseCom KM-6788 http://www.casecom.com.tw/gaming_3.htm http://forums.hexus.net/chassis-syst...eview-pob.html (a very cheap option and yes I've still not finished that review because I'm still waiting on some Memory from play.com )
    Antec 300 http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?id=MTEzMQ== (still a very nice case but lacks cableing holes)
    SilverStone Precision PS02 http://www.silverstonetek.com/produc...o=PS02area=usa (This is still one of the first cheap midi-tower cases with this layout, often overlooked by reviews as it's basic for a silverstone case, also lacks cableing holes)

    I'd not hold your breath on my led round up as none of the ones I have are that quiet, one exception being the 140mm fan.

    Basic rules for 120mm fan & speed
    1000 rpm or less = near enough slient, but least air flow.
    1200 rpm to 1500 rpm = low noise, better air flow.
    1600 rpm to 2000 rpm = relatively noisey, high air flow.
    2400 rpm or more = very loud, massive air flow. (these are turn you pc into a vacume cleaner fans)

    Motor noise and baring noise, these start coming into play around/under 1200 rpm, and is where the very high cost fans come into play for real slient operation.

    Vibration, this is another area where expensive fans come into there own and very cheap fans can fail badly, simply put the more unbalanced the blades are the more wobble they will make when the fan spins, that wobble will cause vibration.
    Vibration will put additional strain on the bareing and will be transfured into the frame of the fan.
    Very cheap fans are often made out of softer plastic with lower quaility control, so more chance of bad blade ballance and weaker frames, which will flex more and can amplify that vibration, making a bad situation worse.
    This does not mean all cheap fans are bad, it just increases the chance of getting a bad fan.

    One thing to note is resonance, by this I mean vibration being set up in whatever the fan is attached too, this comes is two forms.
    The first is fan vibration being transfured into whatever the fan is attached to, think of a case side panel like the skin of a drum, screw a fan that vibrates onto that skin and the whole thing will vibrate, the larger the surface the greater the area of the skin, the more flex it can generate the more sound it can make.
    The other factor is that vibrations will travel through the case and can cause things to rattle.

    The second factor is air flow resonance and whisle, this is simply noise and/or vibrations caused by the air being pushed through a vent or grill.
    A great example is a known issue with the Coolermaster 690 & 590, where a fan will sound louder on the side panel than it will attached to the top, the fan vents are the same, the fan is the same, but the larger area of the side panel helps to reinforce the noise makeing the fan sound louder.
    This can be countered by reduceing the area of the meterial of the vent and by adding distance between the fan and the vent (reduceing turblence in the air flow)
    Things to consider here is the grills on the case, eg the V3 uses raised grills on the top, and lifting the fan off the grill slightly

    Fan controllers, adaptors & mods, I like fan controllers and personally I tend to go for slightly faster fans and use a fan controller to reduce their speed and thus noise, while still having the option to turn the fans back up to full speed to increase the air flow.
    You can get simple resistor adaptors for 3 pin fans that reduce their speed and thus noise, but of course this cannot be done on the fly.
    Simular goes for 4pin molex based fan, where by a simple mod (swapping the pins over) you can reduce the voltage (to ether 5volt or 7volts) and thus the speed.
    One major thing to note with this and LED fans, is that reduceing the voltage, by which ever methord you use, will also reduce the brightness of the LED's

    There are other things that effect fans, bareing type & quality, blade shaped, Static Pressure (the ability to resist back flow), motor quality, material quality.
    These do have an effect but they tend to be secondary to speed, unless they are really bad.
    Motor & bareing quality then to show up most in very low rpm fans and when a fan's speed is reduced below it's standard speed.
    Other than that they tend be the difference between two fans at the same speed.

    In your situation it does depend on the route you wish to go, personally I'd look at low speed LED fans to start with.

    Personally speaking I like the Sharkoon system fan's, yate-loon (SL versions) and sliverstone for lower cost but decent quality fans. (around the £5-6 range)
    I've not had so much luck with LED fans's so far but I've not bought many 120mm LED fans.

    I've bought the Yate-loon 140mm led fans (again the SL versions) and was very impressed, of my recent purchase the yate loon's were not instock so I got a Lian-Li instead and was impressed, it looks, feels and seems to perform almost exactly the same as the Yate-Loon (might be one as Yate -Loon is a major OEM)

    I'm actually thinking of buying one or two of the Lian-Li 1000rpm blue led 120mm fans atm
    http://www.specialtech.co.uk/spshop/...cat=886&page=1

    Although I'd not overlook the following for lower noise LED fans.
    Yate Loon D12SL-12+4LED http://www.specialtech.co.uk/spshop/...cat=886&page=1 (not in stock )
    Coolermaster S12-EB http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/120mm...LED-Quiet-22db
    Akasa Crystal sleeve bareing http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/AKASA...sleeve-bearing (not the ball bareing as it's higher rpm and not quiet)

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    Re: Quiet 120mm Fans

    Quote Originally Posted by johnny View Post
    Decent review of various 120mm fans here:

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/coo...est-case-fan/1
    Yes that's a nice review.
    I've tried out that methord recently, there is one thing they don't mention about that test, Static pressure.
    The more the bag fills the more the air in the bag pushes back against the air flow which reduces the effeciency of the fan.
    The slower the rotational speed of the fan and the larger the gaps between the fan blades the weaker the Static pressure of the fan and the greater the drop in performance.

    One other thing very few reviews take into account is air flow cone and sound pitch.
    The lower the pitch of the sound the more quiet it sounds to the human ear, ie 2 noises the same dB rateing the higher pitch sound will seem louder and more noticeable to you.
    The air cone is effects static pressure, as well as pitch and again is greatly effected by the blade shape, a good example here is the Antec Tri-cool, which has a wider air cone than most fans but also make a lower pitch noise than most.

    Also one to read up on are the SPCR articals & reviews
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article690-page1.html
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article695-page1.html
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article739-page1.html

    I also like the way they actully admited there where problems with the way they originally tested the fans, so came up with a new methord that better represented air flow in a case and then retested all the fan (includeing the original fans in the first round up and updated that round up)
    http://www.silentpcreview.com/article734-page1.html

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