Please recommend quiet PSU

Discussion in 'Power Supplies' started by antef, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. antef

    antef Senior member

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    Hi, I currently have a PC P&C Silencer 610 and despite its name I've determined it's by far the loudest component in my system. I'd like to replace it with the quietest PSU I can obtain for still reasonable money.

    Current parts:
    i5-2500K, 16 GB memory, Crucial m4 and 500 GB HDD

    Intending to buy either GTX 660 Ti, GTX 670, or HD 7950.

    As you can see I don't have a ton of components. I want to go as low as is reasonable on wattage while still making sure the PSU isn't too stressed to keep it quiet. Maybe 500W? If it can run without the fan spinning at all at idle that'd be even better. Max price is ~$140 but would prefer to stay < $100.

    Thanks for any recommendations.
     
    #1 antef, Sep 8, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2012
  2. Zap

    Zap Elite Member

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    If I had a nickel for every time someone posts their realization that PCP&C "Silencer" PSUs are a misnomer... I could buy a chocolate bar now. :sneaky: Damn inflation.

    I don't recommend any passive or hybrid/passive PSUs because they cost too much (starts $100+) and your graphics card will likely be louder than a truly quiet PSU with a spinning fan.

    How about a nice Rosewill Capstone 450W modular PSU for $56 after coupon EMCNANC35 (exp.9/13)? It is 80Plus Gold for efficiency, made by Super Flower (known to be good quality) and is reasonably quiet. 450W should be sufficient for your parts list plus proposed single graphics card.
     
  3. MoInSTL

    MoInSTL Senior member

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    Here's another nickel to add to your collection.

    My PC Power and Cooling MK III Silencer 600w, manufactured by Seasonic is quiet.
     
  4. Maximilian

    Maximilian Lifer

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    Corsair AX / Seasonic X / Corsair HX V2 / Corsair TX V2

    They are all passive at low loads, im not 100% sure that the TX V2 is passive but ive heard that it is.
     
  5. gpse

    gpse Senior member

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    Seasonic X-560 Fully Modular 80PLUS Gold
     
  6. antef

    antef Senior member

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    Thanks, I appreciate the more value-oriented suggestion. What's tricky is there isn't much in the way of technical specs to verify noise output for PSUs so it's mostly going by opinions and reviews. You're right that the video card would probably be louder during gaming, so I'm more concerned about idle noise. It's tough to know how silent it will be at idle without getting a direct recommendation from somewhere like SPCR, which mentions options like the Seasonic X-560. It would be great to get something that is very reasonably quiet for half the price like the Rosewill. Maybe some PSUs publish their fan's noise levels? The key thing is to make sure it's much quieter than my Silencer.

    Should I consider the Enermax NAXN ENP450AWT-B 450W or the FSP Raider 80Plus Bronze 450W from the recent Anandtech roundup?
     
    #6 antef, Sep 11, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012
  7. BFG10K

    BFG10K Lifer

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    Unlike Zap, I’d thoroughly recommend hybrid or fanless PSUs, and I’ll never go back to regular ones. You can’t get more silent than fanless. In particular, the Seasonic-X or newest Kingwin/Super Flower variants.

    My Seasonic-X 560 often doesn’t turn on even during extended gaming periods, and I don’t exactly have low end components either.

    It’s also definitely worth it to pay extra to get gold or platinum certification, not so much for the electricity savings, but for the fact that there’s less waste heat to dissipate, which means you need less cooling.
     
  8. tomoyo

    tomoyo Senior member

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    I'd say hybrid psus are by far the best. Fanless is extremely limited in application since they cost a lot more to guarantee fanless operation and you will have active airflow somewhere in your computer generally. Definitely a hybrid that can be fanless sometimes is the best of both worlds, you have silence, and you have scaling to max power. How can you beat that?
     
  9. Zap

    Zap Elite Member

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    You can't go by technical specs of fans, because fan manufacturers are almost as shady as crappy PSU manufacturers, plus sometimes it isn't the measured noise output but the tone or bearing noise that makes one fan less tolerable than another.

    So your graphics card and CPU run fanless too?

    My point with the OP is that a 120-140mm PSU fan (if done properly by the manufacturer) will probably be no louder at idle than the graphics card fan (which on a gaming card always runs), especially if the PSU is on the bottom of the case as is becoming the norm with current gaming and enthusiast level cases.
     
  10. ControlD

    ControlD Diamond Member

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    I doubt you will find them for as low as the $56 the Rosewill is going for, but it seems like Newegg regularly has deals on Seasonic power supplies. Both my server and my main rig have Seasonic power supplies and they are are close to silent as I would ever hope for considering they have fans in them. They both sit within a foot or two of me on my desk at ear level too. My main rig has a X650 and the server has a much cheaper 300W unit (no idea what the model number is now). If you aren't in a hurry you can always wait for a deal.
     
  11. blastingcap

    blastingcap Diamond Member

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    I own a pair of the Capstone Gold 450W's and can vouch for them. They do need protection via surge protector but you should be doing that anyway instead of relying on the PSU to protect against power surges. Anandtech had a review of it, here: http://www.anandtech.com/show/5698/rosewill-capstone-450w-and-650w-80plus-gold It's really hard to beat for the price and has almost the entire 450W available on the 12v rail, unlike cheaper PSUs. I ran it with a 1055T and 7970 for a long time with no issues and your CPU is less power-hungry. It wasn't completely silent but it was quite quiet. The Gold power efficiency rating is the cherry on top, as it will pay for itself over time, compared to less-efficient PSUs.

    Imho a hybrid solution is even better, and I eventually moved to a Platinum hybrid PSU, but frankly it is not not as good price/performance for most people and the Rosewill Capstone is a far better bargain at $56.

    I would add that I would not recommend 100% fanless PSUs for people with bottom mount cases because you need to keep the vents open up top to let hot air escape. This heats up your case more, and it also lets dust and debris (and small screws if you aren't careful) into the PSU unless you use some sort of air filter, but that filter will obstruct airflow and lead to a hotter PSU which is not good for component life. I would only recommend them to people who place a massive premium on silent operation.

    P.S. Zap know his s~~t. I am impressed. I second his discussion about fans and dBA measurements, etc. I am a fan and PSU enthusiast as well. Well done, Zap!
     
    #11 blastingcap, Sep 11, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012
  12. antef

    antef Senior member

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    Thanks, are you saying that other PSUs offer more robust protection against surges? I'm using a surge protector but having another layer of protection sounds good in case it fails or doesn't work properly. Other than that, the Rosewill is sounding like a good deal. Are there other Super Flower/Seasonic/Enermax-branded PSUs in the $50-70 price range I should be considering before buying? All of those seem to be good brands that run quietly with good reviews.

    My case is a SilverStone PS07 with the PSU top-mounted. If I get some type of hybrid PSU I just want to make sure it doesn't result in more hot air being left in the case at idle if the PSU fan is off. I've also read mixed opinions of whether the PSU should be mounted right-side-up or upside-down.
     
    #12 antef, Sep 12, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2012
  13. BFG10K

    BFG10K Lifer

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    It’s not feasible for a GTX680 to run fanless and even if it was, I wouldn’t want 225W being dropped into my case. That’s why I go for blower designs.

    But I do have the CPU’s fan off until it reaches a certain temperature.

    Depending on the game, I can go hours without either my CPU or PSU fan turning on.

    Understood; the problem is that there’s always the possibility of variation, so the only way to be sure is to go fanless, at least when things are idle.

    That way if you ever have a noise problem, you can immediately eliminate the items that don’t have spinning fans. That’s not so easy to do if your PSU’s fan always spins.

    Also even with the PSU fan spinning so slow that it’s below the noise floor, it’s still dropping some dust in there, no matter how good your intake filters are.
     
  14. fuzzymath10

    fuzzymath10 Senior member

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    I got an X-460 for my living room PC a few months ago to replace my S12II-380 (was on sale for $125 I think). Depending on how quiet your other components are, it might be worth it, but I doubt your video card is going to be quiet enough unless you change out the stock cooler.

    However, empirically, my S12II was easily the loudest component when loaded up to maybe 150W (Radeon 4830 + undervolted Q8200 + 4 HDDs while playing movies). It didn't sound annoying, but was easily heard over 2xNoctua S12B at 500rpm + 1x800rpm S-flex. The 4830 is passive (Accelero S1). It was probably partially due to being temperature sensitive, as my case runs slightly warm. However, the X-460 eliminates the noise issue and based on most reviews, it is very hardy so running at 20C vs 40C is unlikely to make much difference.

    So, if you have a very quiet PC with good fans running <800rpm, your PSU might be the limiting noise contributor, in which case a silent one would perhaps lower the noise ceiling, particularly if you're in the power range; the X-460 has 2 6/8-pin PCI-E connectors meaning it can power pretty much any single card. I have never tried hybrid PSUs (my builds never need that much power), but I'd rather be guaranteed silence than relying on specific conditions for silence; it also reduces the moving parts in your PC by one that is not exactly easy to replace.
     
  15. crazymonkeyzero

    crazymonkeyzero Senior member

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    Agree.:thumbsup:

    I'm running the Seasonic X560 right now, and it's super quiet b/c the fans don't spin up unless they need to such as when I'm gaming. But it's a bit pricey at$130, but it's worth due to the full modular aspect as well as the 5 year warranty.
     
  16. tweakboy

    tweakboy Diamond Member

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    Antec is always silent and a pretty good PSU.
     
  17. antef

    antef Senior member

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    So is fully modular generally preferred or are there trade-offs? I have 3 120mm case fans spinning relatively slowly (< 1000 RPM I think), so I feel like a quiet 120mm PSU fan wouldn't necessarily add much to the noise. I'm not sure if the $70-80 price difference for these hybrid/fanless Seasonics is worth it, but a lot of people here seem to really like them.
     
  18. Scoobyboo

    Scoobyboo Member

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    Another vote for Seasonic :thumbsup:
     
  19. kleinkinstein

    kleinkinstein Senior member

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    Seasonic X-series with APFC in Gold or Platinum efficiency. The fan won't spin until it hits about 43% of rated load. Yet win it does whirl it's silent since it's the best fan in the market. The Sanyo Denki San Ace PWM Silent Fan is about $35 itself. And unlike so many psuedo badging and nomenclature gamesmanship, this unit is 100% modular. The X750 is 20% today on nEgg.
     
  20. philipma1957

    philipma1957 Golden Member

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    the seasonics are great but why not open the psu up and put in a quiet fan? if you have a 120 mm fan and put this fan in

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16835185056

    it is cheaper then buying this

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...easonic%20560w


    or this

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817151087

    or this

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151095
     
  21. antef

    antef Senior member

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    I'm not sure but I think the fan that's already in there is 80 mm. Would be great if that was a viable solution.
     
  22. Ketchup

    Ketchup Lifer

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    #22 Ketchup, Oct 4, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2012
  23. buklau

    buklau Member

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  24. antef

    antef Senior member

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    So I'm about ready to buy and seriously considering the Rosewill that Zap linked to, because it looks quiet and I don't want to overspend (considering I'm only doing this to reduce noise). I have a Silverstone PS07...given that the Rosewill has a fan on top, should I orient it in my case with the fan facing out through the top grill or facing down into the case? The construction of my case seems to imply they want you to face the fan out through the top...I'm assuming this fan sucks in and not blows out? So orienting it up would pull in cool air, orienting it down would pull in hot case air - good for case, but maybe not good for PSU. There's also the concern of fan noise if I orient it up through the grill where nothing will be obstructing it.

    Edit: I also see that the 7950 product pages state a minimum of 500W PSU is required. Do I need to worry about this when considering the 450W Rosewill?
     
    #24 antef, Nov 11, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  25. Deders

    Deders Platinum Member

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    I don't suppose you can get Be Quiet! psu's in the states yet?
     
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