Good news - we're open for limited services in Wembley. Ujima House is now actively under refurbishment and we'd love your help in making the space the best it can be.

Please pay attention to the main LHS mailing list or pop into our #london-hack-space IRC channel and say hello.

During this interim period donations and continued membership are greatly appreciated while we transition to our new space.

Project:Passive cooled pc

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Intro

It's forever bothered me how much noise desktops make. Fans just seem to blow the air round and round and the general setup seems poor.

The Idea

Design and hack together a better setup, with large heat sinks on the exterior and heat pipes to move the heat energy away from the hot bits. Plan is to engineer to the worst case scenario of hot, high end CPU and GPU running on a warm day.

Inspitation

Review with pictures of Zalman TNN-300 Fanless PC Enclosure

Step by step to make a heatpipe based cooling system (SilentMods)

The Challenge

Did some noise testing on my machine, taking out the different parts and measuring noise levels, here's the results:

Totally off (just background noise):: 34 dB
Everything on, idle cpu/graphics: 56 dB
No GPU: 46 dB
No GPU & No HDDs (3): 42 dB
No GPU & No HDDs & No CPU fan: 37 dB


Meaning each component makes roughly this much noise:

PSU Fan: 3 dB
HDDs: 4 dB
GPU fan: 10 dB
CPU fan: 5 dB


For reference:

0 dB Threshold of hearing
30 dB quiet bedroom at night
60 dB conversational speech 1m away
80 dB beside a busy road


Design


Materials

Heatpipes

8mm x 300mm heatpipe via Farnell £10.38 each

ZM-2HC2.jpg

ZALMAN NP Heatpipe HDD Cooler - contains 11 (6mm x 150mm) salvageable heatpipes amazon £13.50

Heatsinks

Heatsink1.jpg

Dimentions: 300 x 345 x 25mm

eBay £16.00