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Fan-less silent PC

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Thank you dualazmak for your observation.

In any case, they only serve to divide the power energy. In fact I need to power the mini PC and the fan with 12V. I also have to get a 5V power supply to power Display Touch and other future possibilities. Also consider that I have only one 220V IEC IN port (see male and female connectors instead) because I will make a bridge to avoid having 2 separate power inputs for Streamer and DAC.
Thank you again, because I didn't know precisely of the importance of amagnetic contacts for audio signals, but I think hi-end cables are steel plated gold, but always steel as core...
 

ampguy

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I've been building servers for many decades. The current ones I build use fanless Power Supplies (Seasonic 80+ Titanium), but I do use fans for the 65W TDP CPU's. These builds idle at ~10W and run Roon server great (linux). The issue with fanless NUCS, or NUCs in fanless cases, are not only are the "U" series if i3/i5/i7 CPU's already less powerful than the desktop models, they severely throttle with out a good fan or active cooler. I do have a fanless Surface Pro i5 I use when I don't want to use a fanned laptop, or the ipad, but for being a few feet away, a good system with a fan is inaudible to me. Also, case design is a consideration for cooling and quietness as well.
 

dualazmak

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I've been building servers for many decades. The current ones I build use fanless Power Supplies (Seasonic 80+ Titanium), but I do use fans for the 65W TDP CPU's. These builds idle at ~10W and run Roon server great (linux). The issue with fanless NUCS, or NUCs in fanless cases, are not only are the "U" series if i3/i5/i7 CPU's already less powerful than the desktop models, they severely throttle with out a good fan or active cooler. I do have a fanless Surface Pro i5 I use when I don't want to use a fanned laptop, or the ipad, but for being a few feet away, a good system with a fan is inaudible to me. Also, case design is a consideration for cooling and quietness as well.

Thank you for your info.
Just for your interest and reference, you can find my fan-less spindle-less completely silent PCs (both with Core i7 2600S TDP 65W) in my post #28 and in my post here on my project thread.
 
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dualazmak

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but I think hi-end cables are steel plated gold, but always steel as core...

I assume none of SP cables (and analog XLR/RCA cables) use magnetizable metals (like steel) in signal lines and shielding covers...
 

dualazmak

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levimax

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My experience is going completely fanless is not the best solution. Just a little bit of airflow makes a huge difference and there are very quiet coolers like Noctura. Going totally fanless creates a lot of complications and expense and performance compromise for no real gain as no room is silent and a quiet cooler can be effectively silent in a real room.
 

Keith_W

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My experience is going completely fanless is not the best solution. Just a little bit of airflow makes a huge difference and there are very quiet coolers like Noctura. Going totally fanless creates a lot of complications and expense and performance compromise for no real gain as no room is silent and a quiet cooler can be effectively silent in a real room.

I agree with you. Back in the day (before CPU's knew how to thermal throttle), I had a couple of CPU's fail because of overheating. Because Intel has a habit of moving to new sockets, this meant motherboard replacement as well - so it was even more expensive. Although I am still running fanless, my new Intel CPU and mobo will throttle if it starts to overheat and I monitor CPU temps like a hawk. It never gets above 60C (140F) in normal use, but I am thinking of cutting a hole in the case to mount a Noctua fan - just for insurance.
 

Palladium

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My experience is going completely fanless is not the best solution. Just a little bit of airflow makes a huge difference and there are very quiet coolers like Noctura. Going totally fanless creates a lot of complications and expense and performance compromise for no real gain as no room is silent and a quiet cooler can be effectively silent in a real room.

Yup, having full control over fan speed and correct fan selection on a desktop PC is a much better approach than brute force fanless.

Besides, the fans that really make noise anymore are those on the GPUs when on full load.

Even cheap fans like Arctic P12 are virtually silent if you tune them correctly to the thermal loading. If you are just playing music/YT/browsing or other low power draw applications a single rear P12 @ 1000 rpm with the rest of the fans shutdown will suffice.
 
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My decision to introduce an insane 200mm Noctua fan comes from a long experience. In fact, when the temperature increases, the mini pc decreases the clock frequency which impacts on overall performance. Also, the wifi/BT module stops its work before the CPU limit temperature is reached. The power supply also benefits from air cooling.
 
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In your opinion which is best way to derivate a 5V tension to supply Display Touch?

1) Get it directly from minipc usb port
2) Put one resitore long a derivation of 12V line (brutal solution)
3) Introduce one $10 dc-dc 12V-5V Amazon Regulator/converter?
4) Add a smatphone USB power supplier.

What possibility exists by adding a different powerline (USB type of smartphone power supplies) to power the Touch Display, that this current, through the USB port of the Touch, connected to the mini pc, dirty the USB port of the mini pc connected to the DAC? Remember that I use a 12V audio grade low noise linear power supply to power the minipc. Or are the display power line and the touch screen power line not electrically connected?

Thank you
wide
 

dlaloum

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My decision to introduce an insane 200mm Noctua fan comes from a long experience. In fact, when the temperature increases, the mini pc decreases the clock frequency which impacts on overall performance. Also, the wifi/BT module stops its work before the CPU limit temperature is reached. The power supply also benefits from air cooling.
To keep things fanless, you need larger heatsinks and heatpipes...
eg: HDplex, Streacom ATX cases - looks like a full size amp with large heatsinks along the side.

My H5 keeps an AMD 4650G from throttling, unless I try to run heavy duty benchmarking software....

I've never seen it throttle under load using any of the games and software that I use regularly - and that is with the integrated graphics generating heat as well.

But if the heatsink is of less impressive proportions (or poorly connected thermally), then yeah a fan is probably needed.
 

dualazmak

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In preparation for my possible future implementation of 16-Ch (or 24-Ch, or 32-Ch) multichannel DAC unit (or such DAC-ADC pro audio interface unit), I am exploring and planning DIY assemble of a new audio dedicated silent (quasi-silent) Windows 11 Pro PC which should have one or two Thunderbolt-4 port on the motherboard (M/B).

My possible choices as of today would be:

M/B: Asrock Z790 PG-ITX/TB4
CPU cooler: Noctura NH-P1 fanless
CPU: Intel Core i7-13700T [1.4GHz/16-core 24-thread/UHD770/TDP35W] Raptor Lake-S
PS: Fractal Design ION+2 Platinum 660W (FD-P-IA2P-660)(semi-fanless Zero RPM compatible)
PC Case: Fractal Design Define 7 Mini
Case fan: only one on rear; low rpm 12 cm Noctura fan; such as NF-P12 redux-900, NF-A12x25 ULN (900 rpm)
OS SSD: 512 GB M.2 PCI-E Gen4
DATA SSD: 4TB M.2 PCI-E Gen4
Graphic Card: none
 

Chr1

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Another interesting looking fanless option. Again, most likely designed for industrial applications...

Link.
 

MCH

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What i didn't know about noctua fans (maybe other brands are the same, I know nothing about building computers) is that they come with an internal pull up resistor of an unknown (to me) value. That means they default to 100% speed (that is very audible) when the pwm signal is not active (i.e. while your software loads).
If you are to diy one, I would suggest consider adding a pull down resistor if you don't want the fan to spin like if there is no tomorrow when you boot or switch off your computer.
 
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Yesterday I finished my personal test with Noctua PWD 200mm (10db in LNA mode 550rpm). The fan is really mute in LNA. Iside the Low Noise bracket there is one resistore. I've plugged 12V in the firts 2 pin of Low Noise Bracket. Without this bracket, (800rpm), the noise is low but not mute!
 

kipman725

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I recently got this mini PC using an Alderlake N100 CPU:
Its intended to be used as a router but the CPU works fine for video decoding for TV usage and it has the IO (apparently does AV1 decode, I had no issues with 4k youtube). I put a 4tb NVME drive in it and a 1tb SATA SSD, I also believe it can take another drive using an 'E' key adaptor. However the M2 slots only have one PCI-E lane which could be an issue for some people. There where no drivers supplied but the latest intel chipset/ethernet driver worked fine with windows 10H2. If you run a demanding application it gets very hot, running memtest the RAM temp eventually got to 80C (after about 30mins) (there is a motherboard fan controler if you wanted to add an external fan or transplant the motherboard into another case). Idle power consuption is IMO higher that it should be around 14W. No coil whine. Overall good for the price considering 'western' n100 boards seem to be about tripple the price, much more powerful than a raspberry PI etc...
 

Digby

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What i didn't know about noctua fans (maybe other brands are the same, I know nothing about building computers) is that they come with an internal pull up resistor of an unknown (to me) value. That means they default to 100% speed (that is very audible) when the pwm signal is not active (i.e. while your software loads).
If you are to diy one, I would suggest consider adding a pull down resistor if you don't want the fan to spin like if there is no tomorrow when you boot or switch off your computer.
This post made me smile, this is some next level autism. I am very strict about fan speeds, but just suffer the excessive noise until I get into the OS, about 30-45 seconds. I admire your dedication to silence though.

For me, the biggest culprits for noise are HDDs, especially when they are screwed onto a desktop case (nice bassy resonator there). Most fans, if speed controlled, can be made to perform very quietly 85% of the time (save extreme loads).

I think a lot of the pushes for reductions in fan/hard drive noise can be traced back to SPCR (Silent PC Review) and the extensive reviews Mike C did. When they started in the early 2000s, the typical computer sounded similar to a jet engine. RIP to SPCR (still alive, but not really kicking).
 

caioferrari

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Guys,
after looking for a AVR or Integrated with a serious equalizer I thought: a PC or Mac has a free powerful equalizer with equalizer APO or AppleAU effects.
With a MiniPC or a used MacMini running Spotify, its a lot cheaper than a amp with Dirac.
So I thought buying a MiniPC install APO, Spotify and connect it at my receiver HDMI port and control Spotify through my cell.
The idea is configure Windows to start APO and Spotify at startup so I don’t need to even access the system.

Is it possible?
 
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