DeepCool QuadStellar review

PC Cases and Modding 229 Page 15 of 16 Published by


Acoustic performance - Fans Noise Levels

Acoustic performance - Fans Noise Levels

Processors and graphics cards can produce a lot of heat, usually that heat needs to be transported away from the hot core as fast as possible. Often you'll see massive active fan solutions that can indeed get rid of the heat, yet all the fans these days make the PC a noisy son of a gun. Do remember that the test we do is extremely subjective. We bought a certified dBA meter and will measure how many dBA originate from the PC. Why is this subjective you ask? Well, there is always noise in the background, from the streets, from the HDD, PSU fan, etc., so this is by a mile or two, an imprecise measurement. You could only achieve objective measurement in a sound test chamber.


The human hearing system has different sensitivities at different frequencies. This means that the perception of noise is not at all equal at every frequency. Noise with significant measured levels (in dB) at high or low frequencies will not be as annoying as it would be when its energy is concentrated in the middle frequencies. In other words, the measured noise levels in dB will not reflect the actual human perception of the loudness of the noise. That's why we measure the dBA level. A specific circuit is added to the sound level meter to correct its reading in regard to this concept. This reading is the noise level in dBA. The letter A is added to indicate the correction that was made in the measurement. Frequencies below 1 kHz and above 6 kHz are attenuated, whereas frequencies between 1 kHz and 6 kHz are amplified by the A weighting.


There are a lot of differences in measurements among websites. We measure noise levels in a completely enclosed and closed room. The lowest dBA level we can measure without any equipment activated is roughly 28 dBA in this room, however, with the panel(s) open. We measure at 40 cm, we hotwire only the up-to 40% load passive PSU, this way other components cannot influence noise.


With the help of a dedicated fan controller, we assign either 5 Volts or 12 Volts to the fans installed in the chassis. That goes for any chassis tested so that we can control the test environment. Over time comparative entries will build up with other chassis tested, of course.



We've also added 12V (100% RPM) measurements. Not that you'd ever use them, but we know you guys like data and test results. Basically, we look at what happens when you nearly max out your fans to check acoustic levels. Above, the results with the panels opened up. 


In the future, we'll be moving away from open test results and moved to closed solely. It's what you might consider common sense, but a closed chassis often can make more noise. This is the nature of airflow bumping into and hitting the innards of the chassis. Realistically nobody would likely even use 40~50% of fan RPM all the time, the 5V measurement is therefore plausible, and at 35 dBA, you, however, can hear this chassis.

The included four fans are a bit on the noisy side, we advise you to drop the fans to 500 RPM, which offers decent enough airflow as well as lower noise levels.

Share this content
Twitter Facebook Reddit WhatsApp Email Print