Quiet CPU Fans?


I recently built a music system for the ski cabin (you can only listen to Infinity
so many times). It’s a Micro-ATX system with a 40Gig drive, a CD ROM, and 256M of
memory. More than enough for music. It runs the same custom MFC application that I
use for my music system at home, and I’m using an old PocketPC as the remote control.

The system works great, except that the CPU fan that I got at my local PC store (the
original one I got was too tall) sounds like a hair dryer. So, I’m shopping for a
new CPU fan that’s quiet.

The search has been a bit confusing, so I’m looking for some help. The CPU is an Athlon
1.3GHz, and the fan needs to be not much bigger than the “small heatsink” size (ie
about 3″ square), and it can’t be too tall (about 3″ max).

Suggestions?


Comments (14)

  1. I’ve bought all my fans from these guys. They can cool a case and keep it quiet:

    http://www.pcpowercooling.com/home.htm

  2. Sean McLeod says:

    Check out http://www.quietpc.com. Also check out their quiet power supplies, often the fan noise from the power supply is as loud if not louder than that coming from the CPU fan.

  3. Sean McLeod says:

    Check out http://www.quietpc.com. Also check out their quiet power supplies, often the fan noise from the power supply is as loud if not louder than that coming from the CPU fan.

  4. What ever happened to vinyl? Being a DJ (hip-hop), I found that there was something very sensual about feeling the vinyl beneath my fingertips, something I think is lost with CDs, mp3s, etc, etc. However, I know that most people are not going to engage music in the same manner which I will, but it still reminisce…

    – Nick

  5. Joe says:

    Plycon sells all sorts of good computer tweaker gear including the very quite Pabst cooling fans. Worth checking out: http://www.plycon.com/

  6. Mike Dimmick says:

    Second vote for http://www.quietpc.com (well, third, but I’m only counting Sean’s votes once 😉 )

    I first dealt with them (the UK branch) with my old PII-300 when the fan bearings failed on the original PSU. The noise level went down quite a bit.

    When buying my new 2.8GHz P4 over the summer, I ordered up a case with acoustic padding (which you have to fit yourself, but that’s not too much hassle), a couple of extra case fans, a PSU and a ducted cooling fan for the CPU. Without the extra fans and the original boxed CPU cooler, the CPU ran at over 65 degrees Celsius at 100% CPU usage – with, it’s a lot quieter and runs at about 55 degrees.

    Now I just need to get the fan off the GPU, and it’ll be very quiet.

  7. A chip of that speed should generate a relatively small amount of heat. Have you considered replacing the fan with a large heat sink? I’ve done it before and it works fine. Just get some heatsink compound at your local computer shop, and find a nice sized heatsink – might want to look at an electronics distributor (i.e. http://www.jameco.com).

  8. Aman says:

    IF u cant afford to replace your fan….
    why dont you try to turn onn some light music in the background while working on PC ;).. you will hear a more plesent sound then the Buuzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz of that fan

  9. You can try water cooling too – quiet cool, and no moving parts. Oh, and it makes you cool too, which means a lot.
    http://www.aaronix.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/331
    (a picture, not necessarily a recommendation)

    Cheers,
    robin

  10. I purchased some molex heat-sinks. They are quiet and very reasonably priced. They are sort-of hard to find. I can’t remember where I bought mine right of hand (I’d have to go back to my records). Email me if you’d like me to tell you where I bought them.