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Old 12th October 2009, 06:28 AM   #21
phofman is offline phofman  Czech Republic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrevie View Post
Does anyone have any particular advice about replacing the fan on the GPU - this is the noisiest component of my HTPC by far and it drives me nuts.

On an aside - I'd love to build a HTPC with passive cooling + SSD - no moving parts!
Do you really need an actively-cooled graphics card for HTPC?
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Old 12th October 2009, 12:32 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrevie View Post
Does anyone have any particular advice about replacing the fan on the GPU - this is the noisiest component of my HTPC by far and it drives me nuts.

On an aside - I'd love to build a HTPC with passive cooling + SSD - no moving parts!
Instead of just the fan you'll most likely have to replace the heatsink too, as most of the fan and heatsinks for GPUs are integral.

Something like this, this or this if you want no fan at all. Having said that, I'd want there to be decent air flow inside my PC if I were to use a completely fanless heatsink on my GPU.

I've used both Zalman and Arctic cooling products on graphics cards in the past and they've always done what I wanted them to do - be as good as silent when not playing a game and quiet when playing.
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Old 12th October 2009, 01:04 PM   #23
mrevie is offline mrevie  Australia
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Thanks for the recommendations and advice 5th element! Thinking i'll definitely replace the GPU cooler and stock CPU cooler. My case is already fitted with 120mm fans which are silent enough.

I couldn't be happier with my HTPC setup at the moment, but these little optimisations make it all the sweeter.

As a small aside - although i bought the HDAV1.3 sound card to use purely for the HDMI digital out, after experimentation things sound much, much, much better when feeding my gainclone straight from its analog outs. This is opposed to the DAC and pre outs of my yammie RX-V663 receiver.
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Old 12th October 2009, 03:20 PM   #24
CBRworm is offline CBRworm  United States
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I've heard really good things about the Asus Xonar cards, it wouldn't surprise me if it's DAC is as good as or better than the Yamaha - although the Yamaha should be pretty good too. If nothing else there is a lot less in the chain using the sound cards analog outputs; the compromise might be in high frequency noise from being inside the PC case that is hopefully inaudible.
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Old 16th October 2009, 06:27 AM   #25
dangus is offline dangus  Canada
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A couple of times, I've just glued replacement fans onto graphics cards using RTV (silicone sealant).

Old computers, like name brand systems from the 8088/286/386 era often had top-quality Japanese-made fans in the power supplies. They're usually still in perfect working order (once the dust and crud are removed). Save the wire grilles, since they are quieter and don't restrict airflow.

I suspect media players like the Western Digital WD TV and the more-capable Xtreamer are close to making HTPCs obsolete. Well, except for the PVR functions. They look nearly perfect for car or van installation, since they are tiny, run on 12V, and will play any content, including 1080p Blu-ray. If the HDMI output will feed a DVI LCD monitor, I'll be able to enjoy "Blair Witch Project" or "Evil Dead" on a (relatively) big screen while camping.
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