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Thread: [EU] Something quiet (silent), yet not too expensive for a GTX 970

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    Lightbulb [EU] Something quiet (silent), yet not too expensive for a GTX 970

    G'day people! I'm back again building another PC after some months. Last time you convinced me that the Toughpower XT 575W was a good choice for my last PC. This time I am hoping you can help me out again.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    What I am trying to accomplish:

    I want a PC that is as quiet as possible (this is the main importance) and can do good gaming with a GTX 970 (or 980 if the prices magically drop within a few months). It is important that the PSU is either totally silent (fanless) or very, very quiet. Secondly the PSU should be at least 500W and have the best power efficiency as possible without it getting insanely expensive.

    Also, I live in the EU. So a lot of PSUs I have found are not even remotely available for me over here. I only linked what I have found available for me in the EU so far, but please feel free to recommend me something else and I will see if it is available!

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    Anyway without further ado, please help me choose between (in remotely no order):



    Super Flower Leadex Gold 650W (80 Plus Gold) [Review 1] [Review 2]

    Pros: 650W, modular, awesome ratings, 80+ Gold, cool modular LED thingys, great PSU company apparently
    Cons: Not silent, fan quoted as loud under load, kinda expensive???
    Cost: €125



    Super Flower Golden Silent 500W (80 Plus Platinum) [Review 1] [Review 2]

    Pros: Fanless, modular, good ratings, 80+ Platinum, great PSU company apparently
    Cons: Very expensive imo for only 500W, little room to upgrade???
    Cost: €150



    Silverstone 520W Nightjar, Fanless, (80Plus Platinum) [Review 1] [Review 2]

    Pros: Fanless, modular, 80+ Platinum, 9.4 rating on JohnnyGuru
    Cons: It's white.. my case (and all of my components are black, and this really kinda sucks for me imo)... Also it's expensiveeeeee.
    Cost: €147

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    That's pretty much it guys. I couldn't really find anything else that was available in the EU. We have 2 fanless ~500W PSUs as far as I can find!

    Now I'd really like a computer that is as reliable and quiet as possible and I don't mind spending an extra €25 for this. So that almost completely rules out the first PSU for me with the fan, though it's 650W which gives me a lot of room to run SLI in the future if I ever want to.

    The thing is a lot of people are b*tching at me for even thinking of spending so much on a PSU and many of them think that I shouldn't be spending over €80 for one. When I mention that I am willing to spend almost twice that they say that I'm crazy and that I could easily get away with some quiet 80+ Gold with a fan like this: Thermaltake London 550W Semi Modular 80+ Gold.

    So guys. Please.

    I want something quiet, but I don't want to get ripped off for it. I know that fans = extra noise (always). But at the same time, I am going to be running my PC A LOT so I feel like when I turn it on, it should STFU and be energy efficient and still do what I want.

    Currently I feel like:

    1. That seasonic is the best, but ffs it's WHITE!!! everything I bought already is black or red!
    2. That other Golden Flower fanless looks really good and got rave points and reviews.
    3. The 650W PSU with the fan gives nice amount of room for upgrades (maybe almost more than I need though). Though it comes with a fan.
    4. I can't really trust that Thermaltake London to be quiet under load and the rest of the manufacturers seem to be on a much higher level of OEM.

    Also I forgot to mention I read a review from someone who said that he got the Seasonic PSU and it actually made a humming noise like an old refrigerator and wasn't remotely silent. Would that mean it was defective??

    Anyway so.

    Decide for me please!
    Last edited by Leijonasisu; 06-23-2015 at 05:52 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    Decide for me please!
    Be Quiet Straight Power E10 500W CM.
    Best, Luca

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    "But muuuuuuum it's got a fan on it!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    "But muuuuuuum it's got a fan on it!"
    Even your GTX 970 (probably two, maybe three, as well as your case and CPU heatsink).
    Best, Luca

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    I was thinking about taking the fan off the CPU cooler (I'll get a good one), or getting a fanless cooler. Also I am going to run as few fans as possible in the case and I won't really be OCing anything. I don't mind if the inside of the case gets 'warm'. I'd rather the machine silent as I'm used to roughly 44dBa @ just over half a metre with my current laptop.

    The fans inside the case (it's a Fractal Design R5 with soundproofing) are already basically inaudible. The PSU is mounted on the back and would be one of the main causes of noise at load. So I'd like something fanless. Though I do see your point.

    So currently I'd have it set to 1 intake on the front. 1 exhaust at the back and one exhaust at the top. With no CPU fan. The 970 would have 2 fans yes but with Fan Stop technology, and still at load I've seen it in action, it's very, very quiet. Possibly silent in this case with some tweaking. That's what I am going for anyway as I've seen it done many times in other builds. Because I can't do much in terms of soundproofing/reduction about fans on the back I'd rather not add one for the PSU (in addition to the single 140mm I already have one the back).

    Also if I do end up using a lot of fans I will use the BIOS or the case's fan profile switch to set them all to be inaudiable outside of the case. I can't do this with the PSU if it's not fanless...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    So currently I'd have it set to 1 intake on the front. 1 exhaust at the back and one exhaust at the top.
    Wrong move: the top fan will likely be more in the line-of-ears than any CPU fan (i.e. it will be more audible).
    An efficient cooler with one/two/three slow running fans is what you actually need for an inaudible rig.


    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    and still at load I've seen it in action, it's very, very quiet.
    Set aside the PSU fan faces the floor, the quoted Be Quiet it's quieter, you won't be able to hear it over your VGA noise in any case.

    Btw, you are totally wrong being obsessed with fanless cooling (as any people who never owned a totally inaudible rig, if I may take the liberty to say): fanless is pointless, while noise signature is much more important (not to mention you are likely going to notice several traces of electronic noise in a fanless system).

    What you need for a good noise signature is a bunch of good sounding fans and a flexible form of fan control, like the one offered by ASUS/ASRock UEFI, or even more flexible software pieces like either ASUS FanXpert or SpeedFan.

    Anything different is just a form of show off (and you should accept ridiculously hot temps).
    Best, Luca

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    Hmm wow thanks for the detailed run-down!

    But the way you talk it seems like you're basically saying that 'Fanless' PSUs are pointless. Actually I just realised that you DID say exactly that..

    Well the PSU you quoted is very, very cheap in my country. It's only €110, and there's a 600W Cable Management version for only another €10 which I think would be better value if it can perform just as silently as you say. I'm also surprised to see its efficiency at 93% vs. the fanless PSUs I linked which are all lower and yet still 'Platinum' vs. the Be Quiet!'s 'Gold'.

    So I suppose I will go with:

    be quiet! Straight Power 10 600W CM

    You are right that it must be silent. The above link + other reviews put the fan at roughly 20dBa @ 100% load which is audible but super quiet, and anything less than 100% load (which I won't be running the 600W at) is from 10dbA up, which is yeah inaudible. So I doubt I will end up really hearing it at the bottom of this case as I won't be really taking more than 350W from it at any given time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    But the way you talk it seems like you're basically saying that 'Fanless' PSUs are pointless. Actually I just realised that you DID say exactly that..
    There is just one fanless PSU I will actually buy: the Super Flower.
    Any other one (basically the Seasonic Platinum, also sold by XFX and Silverstone with different color schemes) is either more whine-prone, or not enough reliable (any other fanless PSU different from Seasonic and Super Flower).

    At any rate, fanless parts (coolers, PSU) need a different case than the rather hot R5 (look at the NoFan CS-80).
    Best, Luca

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    I looked at that case but I couldn't really find anywhere to buy it within the EU

    Ok, so we've proven that you can get 'silence' more or less and still use fans. Moving on.

    I do still have a question though after re-reading the reviews I posted.

    This review page says that the SuperFlower Leadex GOLD 650W only got up to 881rpm at 100% load and that it was basically inaudible. The fan in it is 140mm.

    Another review here states:
    Noise (dBA)
    152W @ 28.0
    270W @ 28.8
    400W @ 31.3
    523W @ 34.2
    650W @ 36.1

    The fan doesn’t spin much until 500 watts is demanded. At 550W the fan is audible and at 650 watts the noise is clearly noticeable, rating at just over 36 dBa.
    This seems a bit loud however and it totally contradicts the other review imo. 900rpm shouldn't really amount to 36dBA on a 140mm fan...

    So would you recommend the be quiet! strongly over the super flower? If so, I will go with that. I've just heard glowing reviews and testimonals about Super Flower's quality etc.

    P.S. I'm surprised what you said about Seasonic. JohnnyGuru gave them a 9.4/10 for their fanless 520W. Though like I said I did read one person complain about an annoying humming sound that it made. The Super Flower 500W fanless got a 9/10. I linked to both reviews on JG in my OP.

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    The Seasonic made can bring coil whine problems. This is very hard to estimate before actually trying one in your system. I had 6 of these passive Seasnoc mades in my hands, got everything from annyoing noise level to absolutely fine. Here in Germany the Super Flower Fanless is available for 128 incl. shipping. http://geizhals.de/super-flower-gold...g-a660059.html Unfortunately it's not amazon themselves but marketplace, otherwise I'd have recommended the extra shipping cost and order it via amazon.de. For the marketplace this doesn't work, I guess.

    Some more alternatives: Corsair RMi, be quiet! Straight Power 10 (CM).

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