This is my highest-spec machine. It was built gradually from an older, noisy build - each part was swapped out for a higher-performance or quieter part.
The included rear fan in the case was moved to the front and the Phanteks fan was put in its place. This makes the case positive pressure - two 140 mm fans moving air in, one 140 mm fan moving air out. The interior of the case stays pretty clean - most of the dust accumulation occurs at the fan filters in front. This is easily cleaned without shutting down using a cheap little USB vacuum cleaner. The three fans are all controlled by the fan controller included with the case. On low, it's virtually silent.
The part that made the most difference in noise was the CPU cooler - I was using a cheap Zalman CNPS5X before. Its little 92 mm fan groaned and whined up and down with CPU load, and at high speed the entire heatsink resonated like a plucked guitar string. The Scythe made a world of difference. Its fan is virtually silent even at higher speed. It's not excessively heavy but its large surface area cools very, very well. If it wasn't for RAM interference it would be the perfect heatsink - I'm not sure why there isn't more buzz about it, it's one of the top coolers at silentpcreview.com.
This photo shows my older Corsair ValueRAM which clears the fan. My newer G.Skill Sniper memory does interfere but once the heatsink's fan is slid up slightly, everything fits well.
I don't use this machine for heavy gaming, it's mostly a daily workstation. I also experiment with Linux and VMs and it runs some server applications:
- samba file sharing
- weewx (weather station data reporting)
- Logitech Media Server (it runs several Logitech/Slim Devices networked audio players)
- cacti (network monitoring)
It runs Linux Mint 17.
|CPU||AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core||$106.01||OutletPC|
|CPU Cooler||Scythe Mugen 4 79.0 CFM||$46.99||Mwave|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD3 ATX AM3+||$108.00||Newegg|
|Memory||G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866||$84.99||Newegg|
|Storage||Seagate 600 Series 240GB 2.5" SSD||$207.27||TigerDirect|
|Western Digital Caviar Black 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM||$299.95||Newegg|
|Video Card||Asus GeForce GT 640 2GB||$86.98||Newegg|
|Case||Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower||$79.99||Newegg|
|Power Supply||Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V||$99.99||NCIX US|
|Optical Drive||Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer||$16.99||Newegg|
|Wired Network Adapter||Intel EXPI9301CTBLK 10/100/1000 Mbps PCI-Express x1||$28.34||Amazon|
|Case Fan||Phanteks PH-F140HP_BL 88.6 CFM 140mm||$14.99||Newegg|
|Keyboard||Logitech MK520 w/Laser Mouse||$39.99||Amazon|
|Custom||Samsung S24B30BL||$134.99 CAD||(Purchased)|
|Total (Canada):||$134.99 CAD|
|Date Published||Aug. 6, 2014|
|Date Built||Feb. 5, 2014|