- Editorial: Quiet PC. by Saeed Amen.
As PCs have
become powerful they have become hotter. As such, there has been a huge
growth in the number of fans used. However, most are quite noisy. This
did not used to matter too much, since computers were used only in offices.
These days consumers are using PCs to play music, watch DVDs etc. and
the constant whirring of fans can be a bit irritating. Apple cottoned
onto to this. Consequently their computers are whisper quiet. I have an
iMac and the thing is so damn quiet, you can hear it if you press your
ear directly onto the back of the screen!
Even PC manufacturers
have begun to quieten their computers, but still their computers are noisy.
Specialist companies have popped in the new quiet cooling market. One
of the leaders of this is QuietPC.com
who stock quiet fans, heatsinks and also acoustic damping material. I
recently reviewed some products from QuietPC.com made mainly by Zalman.
I was quite impressed that although the fans were very quiet they nevertheless
were as effective at reducing the temperature, by employing tried and
tested methods, but in a new way, such as large heatsinks and large fans.
The idea of a large fan is that it can spin slower and is thus quieter.
The CPU heatsink resembles a flower, and has a huge surface area for very
efficient removal of heat.
At the moment these fans and heatsinks are not too cheap, but I think
as these products become more widespread the price must come down. Certainly,
I hope more PC manufacturers take this problem seriously, since many people
don't like to modify their PC themselves, and may end up buying Apple.