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Thread: Fan Testing Part 2 (Retesting + Noise)

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Fan Testing Part 2 (Retesting + Noise)

    Here is my round two effort on testing fans. Round 1 was an attempt at measuring the PQ curve of the fan, but after enough testing I began to see fairly minimal differences across the pressure range and feel that it's not as valuable as focusing in on voltage differences on a fixed radiator. In addition, missing the noise element made the data fairly limited in use. So with that, I've reconfigured my testing method to test on a fixed radiator at a sweep across the applicable voltage options. While doing so, I'm also measuring noise levels as part A of this round.

    In addition, I've found that noise level or quantity, is not enough to fully understand a fan, it must be recorded to capture the sound tone or "Quality" of the sound produced from the fan. While doing these videos, I'm capturing CFM and voltage in the background so that you can utilize two videos at a time to make direct CFM to CFM apples to apples comparisons between two fans. In the end, I think this video recording is more important than the dB numbers themselves.

    So first up, is part A for the testing and charts, and I'll follow that with the video links for your own evaluation:

    PART A - TESTING & CHARTS

    Here is the new setup:


    I'm purposely measuring noise point blank range at the fan to maximize resolution on the measurement. I wouldn't worry about the numbers as much as the relative differences, my meter may be in need of calibration too, but it's what I have so it's what I'm using.

    I don't understand noise well enough yet either, so I'm just measuring at the hip. It's obviously interesting how a 30-40dB spec fan can produce over 70 at close distances. Also my ambient noise level hovers around 47-50db. I'm leaving my regular PC running in the background so that all the measurements I run have about the same ambient noise level. I think this may be more important than trying to measure in total silence which in itself is near impossible to do.

    Tools
    The radiator is an XSPC RS120. The fan is mounted without any sort of gasket (Finger Tight M4 Screws/nuts), I only place a piece of tape on the noise side to prevent air from causing problems with the noise measurement. I adjust voltage with my Mastech HY3005D lab power supply. Voltage is measured at the plug to the fan to eliminate vdroop in the wiring. Amperage is measured on the power supply display. RPM is taken from my crystalfontz CFA-633.

    Test Proceedure
    -Mount fan to radiator with M4 screws until nuts are a hard finger tight on all four corners.
    -Set sound level meter to edge of fan/radiator just far enough to prevent touching.
    -Run fan for 5 minutes to warm up fan and anemometer.
    -Reduce voltage to zero to record ambient noise level.
    -Increase voltage to 5V.
    -Record amperage from mastech PSU, dB from sound meter, RPM from PC Crystalfontz CFA-633, CFM from Anemometer (if >9cfm)
    -Increase to 6V repeat recording as noted above.
    -Repeat measurements on even volts including 5V, 6V, 7V, 8V, 9V, 10V, 11V, 12V. Voltage held to .03v and measured at fan 3 wire plug.

    TESTING RESULTS

    Bare with me on the excel default formatting. I'll be working on changing some of the line and marker colors to improve contrast and readability.

    Air Flow Vs. Noise

    This chart represents a relationship between air flow and noise. It's probably one of the more important relationship folks are looking for, although I would caution about noise numbers being what they are. Noise quantity does not equal noise quality and that's something not presented here. Many of the 38mm fans seem to present better here, although subjectively I think their noise quality is lower than the 25mm fans. You can also get a sense for how strong or powerful a fan is by how far the lines extend upward on the air flow scale.

    Regardless, the Gentle Typhoon is presenting well here with it's unique fan blade design. It does present a different tone than most of the fans, sort of a sound all of it's own. Other fans seem to rate relatively poorly that doesn't really fit with my own perception. The noise blocker fans seem to have a good smooth sound in my own perception, yet they measured higher numbers of noise quanity compared to others.

    I would fall back to what I understand from noise level.

    3db differences are considered "Barely perceptible". I've also probably got 1-2dB error in testing, so I wouldn't necessarily consider anything significant unless the difference in sound is more than 5dB.

    Here is the big overall chart:


    And one zoomed to better see lower speed areas:


    Radiator Air Flow Vs. Voltage

    This is purely performance only showing you how much air is pushed through the radiator for various amounts of voltage. Generally the thicker (38mm), the higher the RPM, the more curved shaped blade, and the more number of blades produces more power. The Delta AFB SHE 38mm nearly 4000RPM fan is clearly king here producing nearly 10X the amount of air as some of our slowest speed fans. Of coarse all that comes with ALOT more noise, but we're not looking at noise in this chart.




    Air Flow Vs. RPM


    This is more of a measurement of fan blade power or efficiency per RPM. The important thing here is to understand that there's a fairly good range of performance for the same RPM. Some fans have a straighter blade and require more RPM for the same CFM, etc.





    The San Ace with it's 38mm thickness and curved blades is producing the most per RPM, followed by the Gentle Typhoon.

    Noise vs. RPM

    And this is the noise measurement per RPM. Some fans tend to produce more noise per RPM and this could be a combination of the fan blade making the noise as well as the motor. There appears to be some give and take between CFM and Noise per RPM with many of the fans, but some seem to do both pretty well.





    Noise Vs. Voltage

    This chart is all about noise "Quantity" and nothing more, again I would caution that noise quantity is different than quality. This does not quantify the "motor Ticking" or other types of "irritating" noises that you would consider when comparion the noise of one fan to another. The Ultra Kaze 1000, the LED version of the Yate Loon D12SL12, the Noise Blocker XL-1, and straight blade yate loon D12SL12 are among the more quiet fans. Again this is just noise quantity, not quality or tone!


    RPM Vs. Voltage
    This is just a simple look at RPMs. Some fans have an ability to reach fairly wide ranges of RPM, while others are more specifically designed for one area only. This should give you some sense of the fan's ability to change RPM by varied amounts of voltage.



    Air Flow Vs. Power Consumption

    This is likely not of concern for most users, but I have seen a few fans claiming to be environmentally friendly regarding energy efficiency, so I thought I'd plot this comparison. It is a relationship of energy efficiency vs. air flow produced. This should also give you a sense of power requirements for fan controllers, etc.

    Also some fans like the nanoxia, claim to be a "Green" fan. It is green in color, but it was more of average than a top electrical efficiency fan. The Gentle Typhoon and a few other were generally more electrically efficient.


    and a closer up..


    Part B - VIDEO RECORDINGS FOR YOUR OWN NOISE QUALITY REVIEW

    To help with the problem that noise level doesn't necessarily fit with noise quality, I'm including some video recordings to capture the fan's particular noise quality traits. I'm testing on the same platform and recording the CFM and voltage in the video for reference. The only difference is I'm not adding a piece of tape to seal (Between Fan/Rad) since I'm not measuring noise level. This may result in slightly lower CFM numbers than the charts, but they are all tested equally the same, so the CFM numbers on the videos are good relative numbers. Anyhow, pay particular attention to the sound tone and motor ticks when undervolting. These are important traits I don't think you can capture in a number and I feel are much more important the the dB number I've included in the charts. Note that the anemometer isn't very accurate until about 10cfm, number below that are not to be trusted, you'll see what I mean when you watch the video.

    Note that the JVC camera used does have automatic gain control, so these videos should not be used to compare sound level, they are only good for tonal characteristics and quality...not quantity.

    VIDEO LINKS

    ADDA HB = ADDA AD1212HB-A71GL
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FlZvjwMySc

    Delta AFBSHE = Delta AFB1212SHE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgHKP_mBZJg

    Gtyphoon AP15 = Servo Nidec Gentle Typhoon DC1225C12B5AP-15
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLgJomTh74w

    Kool25MBK = Koolance Fan-12025MBK
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEM1IhBQ2xU

    Kool25HBK = Koolance Fan-12025HBK
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ji-f9ywCcqM

    Kool38HBK = Koolance Fan-12038HBK
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiNcYXlVTKk

    Panaflo M = Panaflo FBA12G12M
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqMWeTYLrD4

    Panaflo U = Panaflo (NMB MAT)FBA12G12U
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmfJpveSOjk

    San Ace H1011 = Sanyo Denki San Ace 109R1212H1011
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dCBSux7cvc

    Kflex M = Scythe Kama-Flex S1225FDB12M
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLVYsJ8SStQ

    Kflex H = Scythe Kama-Flex S1225FDB12H
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MP1pVShKyRk

    Sflex-E = Scythe S-Flex SFF21E
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcJ4Yr2krTk

    Sflex-F = Scythe S-Flex SFF21F
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ygYCWhwP7c

    Sflex-G = Scythe S-Flex SFF21G
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrtRQD2q1vM

    SlipStream SH = Scythe Slip Stream SY1225LS 12SH
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UO4Tk2FzZBs

    ScyUK3 = Scythe Ultra Kaze 1000 DFS123812H-1000
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMNxyDxmgAE

    ScyUK3 = Scythe Ultra Kaze 3000 DFS123812H-3000
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gb-0usGR-Ok

    Nanoxia FX2000 = Nanoxia FX12 2000
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3NWkB0U6UOU

    NB XL-1 = Noise Blocker XL-1
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3stzdNw0K0s

    NB XL-2 = Noise Blocker XL-2
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvX_z9OzI0M

    NB XLP = Noise Blocker XLP
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWU1ptI8J7E

    NB S1 = Noise Blocker M12 S1
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXCjqxmS3mM

    NB S2 = Noise Blocker M12 S2
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GNDu5Fn5bg

    NB S3 = Noise Blocker M12 S3 HS
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrYiC9Xq8uw

    SilverStone 25BU = Silver Stone (Everflow) R121225BU
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=257bRrU--Z0

    Thermaltake TT-25 = Thermaltake TT-1225 (Thunderblade)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0TEWJ5Ibz34

    Yate SL-C = Yate Loon D12SL12 Curved Blade
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=909stCuDbtM

    Yate SL-S = Yate Loon D12SL12 Straight Blade
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bA0bGsC1VLw

    Yate SL-LED-S = Yate Loon D12SL12 LED version with Straight Blades
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAqIY_S4aT8

    Yate SH-C = Yate Loon D12SH12 Curved Blade
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCLssN0yQ8U

    Zalman ZM-3 = Zalman ZF1225ASH
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7Yy3U2QYdo


    Testing accuracy and Repeatability
    I'll be checking some more results after I get the last couple of fans done, but I have included two tests on separate days of the GT AP-15 to give you an idea (In the first chart). My ambient noise levels varied to some degree, but I believe measuring very close to the fan eliminates most of that error for measurments several dB higher than ambient. Noise levels in the 50-55db range would be more suspect. Anyhow, for a hobby built test rig, I'm generally pretty happy the results are at least looking good from a relative sense. I would not take any of the actual numbers as absolute, the CFM is arbitrarily calibrated per a fan, so I know there's error there, I believe I'm reading high CFM if anything. My noise meter is also just a cheap meter, so I'm not sure it's accurate. In a silent room my sound level meter will only read down to about 39dB which is the limit of the meter. This is why I chose to keep a constant background noise present which kept the ambient noise level in the range of 47-52dB.

    Bottom line, the equipment is cheap, not lab grade and only good for relative comparisons. I would also like to reiterate that noise quantity in dB is not the same as noise quality, don't take the dB numbers as a definitive measurement of good vs. bad, the only way to be absolute there is to try each of your preferred fans and decide for yourself.

    Summary
    There are alot of good fans here and considering the human ear is only capable of sensing 3dB rises as "Barely Perceptible", I would consider that a good indication of why fan preferences are so varied. They all have similar noise characteristics. I think I have collected a good group of performance numbers, particularly the CFM vs Volts chart, I would use that to give you a sense of fan powers.

    Subjective Notes

    I don't necessarily think there is a means to accurately identify which fans are necessarily better than others that would be agreeable to all. There is far too much personal preference that determines which tone or characteristic sound and power requirement is desireable. With that said I see several generalities:

    -Motor noise is generally smoother the smaller the fan motor hub, but also a higher pitch. 38mm fans with the extra large fan hub general have more of a pulsing or motor ticking type of sound when running very low rpm levels. This measures low from a dB standpoint, but it's a noise that many may not like...you really need to listen to the videos to see that.
    -Noise tone and quality often times varies across the voltage range, sometimes it can even get worse at one voltage and get better with a higher voltage, it's one of those sound dynamics that occurs.
    -Fan generally produce more CFM per RPM the thicker the are, the more curved the blade, and the more number of blades.
    -There is no consistency between fan families. I've seen several cases where the same series of fan has very different sound responses, you simply can't depend on consistency there.
    -It gets really really hard to choose between fans in the ultra silent 1000 or less category. My instruments were simply not able to measure CFM levels that low and to my ears, they are all silent down at that level.

    Recommendation
    As much as I've tried to quantify things as scientifically as I'm able to with the equipment I have, I would emphasize that you listen to the videos as the primary means to compare fans and make your own personal preference choice. A really handy way to do that is to start up two window browsers with a video in each window, then use the sliders to match up similar CFM levels and pause each movie. Then go back and forth between each fan and see which one you like the sound tone of better. I think this is different for everyone, and you should make your own decision on what you like...not what I or anyone else likes. You can also use the charts to understand things like how powerful the fans are, what RPM range they can produce, power requirements, etc....but I'd use the video as the main tool here.

    Final Notes

    If I had to pick just one fan for my needs. I want something very quiet, but something that also has a decent amount of performance. While being a bit on the ugly side, the Gentle Typhoon AP-15 gets my top pick for producing the most CFM per noise level and quality of the fans tested. 9 volts in particular is my favorite spot which is still producing a good 22+ cfm on the radiator.

    For the high speed stuff, I'll give my kudos out to the San Ace. I still think it has that common 38mm fan motor noise when undervolted, but it's the smoothest of the bunch from what I can tell.

    As far as the <1000 RPM range, I think all of the fans (except the high speed 38mm fans) are good and really hard to separate. I couldn't really measure CFM below 10CFM, so I really couldn't tell you much with my test setup other than CFM is pretty crappy down there and you better plan on many times more radiator than someone with strong fans.

    Bottom line:

    King of Power @12V = Delta AFBSHE
    King of Low Noise @ 12V = Noiseblocker S1
    King of CFM per Noise Level/Quality = Gentle Typhoon AP-15

    And most importantly...

    I wanted to give a HUGE thanks to Hondacity, Alex from Petra's, Linus from NCIX, and Martin from feser-one for donating these fans to test. Also KaptCrunch for helping me out with the sound meter. This test would not have happened without their generosity..

    THIS TEST IS DONE!!


    Update 5-19-09:
    John from Madshrimps cleaned up my mess of data in a nice fan by fan with video layout here as a rehost for you in an easier to follow layout with detailed graphs for each fan, thanks!

    Update: 9-7-2010
    In pursuit of learning more about audio and noise and attempting to quantify noise quality..., I did some experimentation with extracting noise profiles from the recorded audio of the original videos taken in part B. I've also been playing around with weighting curves. Here is a chart defining various "Weighting" standards, most common in the us for environmental use is the "A-weighting method. It's basically just a method to make pressure levels better fit what the human ear perceives as noise. For example, we're much more annoyed by a tone at 3KHz vs 100Hz, so it gives those frequencies more emphasis.


    One particular area, I'm finding more about doing some noise profiles is AGC (Automatic Gain Control). Some camcorders have what is called automatic microphone gain, in which they adjust the microphone gain on the fly. I'm finding through this research and spectrum work that the JVC camera I used did in fact have some microphone gains done automatically on me during my recording work. This was found by doing a spectrum analysis on the blank portion of the videos. It appears I had most of the videos fit in one of two gain levels separated by about 10dB. Unfortunately this means you should NOT NOT rely on the sound output of the video as a means to evaluate noise level, you can only use them to listen to tonal and or rythm sound quality differences. My JVC seems to have somewhat randomly selected different microphone gains on different recordings, each of which is pretty much exactly a 10dB separation. Not sure why and there is no way around this, but you should be aware of it regardless. Here is a small sample of the microphone profile from the beginning quiet portions of each video:


    Below I tried to correct out this microphone noise and difference from each profile... basically took the microphone hiss noise with ambient noise profile and subtracted that from the fan recording, the adjusted it per the A-weighting curve to give additional emphasis on the 1-6K region. At this point I don't know if that's good or bad or completely wrong to do all together...just an experiment as I learn more about audio. This is what that little experiment gave me so far. I suppose it's more accurate than not correcting at all, but noise levels are a bit more complex than simple addition/subtraction. I'm not quite sure if a +10 microphone gain automatically equates to +10 across the board, or something different.



    Anyhow, I am still quite impressed with the Gentle Typhoon's "Different" noise profile compared to the others (regardless of this profiling effort), but many have also noted that they really like the San Ace best. This is a good example to emphasize how sound quality preferences differ between individuals. What you or I or the next guy likes, doesn't really matter. We all think a little differently when it comes to noise, and in the end regardless of any detailed scientific efforts to quantify noise.....it's still EXTREMELY SUBJECTIVE and you should decide for YOURSELF!..

    UPDATE ROUND 4 TESTING 9-25-2010

    Building upon what I learned previously, plus having access to much better video/audio tools. I made a mini 6 fan test including the following:




    Here are the videos in no particular order:

    Fan Test 4 Yate Loon D12SM12 Curved Black
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vILqRsVDqX8

    Fan Test 4 Servo Nidec (Scythe) Gentle Typhoon D1225C12B5AP-15
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8AmF1Z0M8JY

    Fan Test 4 Rosewill DF1202512SEMN BlueLED Clear
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLXsDcQvRS4

    Fan Test 4 Rosewill DF1202512SEMN Black
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hE48YxQwnOo

    Fan Test Round 4 - Noctua NF-P12
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuTm9XysZVA

    Fan Test 4 Silverstone AP121 HA1225L12SF-Z
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cec_HlQK4IQ

    Please use the videos to compare noise quality differences. I liked the GT and Noctuas as the high end and the Yates as the budget fan, but I'd suggest you decide for yourself.


    Cheers!
    Martin
    Last edited by Martinm210; 09-25-2010 at 08:34 PM.

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    I am Xtreme Hondacity's Avatar
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    OMG!!! the YL-SHC have the same output as 12038hbk on the RS120, this is just ...ummmm

    that SA-H1011 is just awesome, i gotta try one, i wonder how it sounds,

    have you started recording audio?

    Thanks Martin, go easy testing


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    Xtreme Addict silverphoenix's Avatar
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    I'm thinking I may do some testing as well, but probably nxt semester, going through school = lotta $$$$ hehe. Honda you wanna test any San Aces? I have a couple spare ones I'm not using that I could loan out but they have those funky server connectors on em.

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    I am Xtreme Hondacity's Avatar
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    what model is it? i'll send you a pm, thanks for the offer man :thumbsup:


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    Great work Martin, thanks. I'm looking forward to the rest of the results

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    Xtreme Enthusiast Zehnsucht's Avatar
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    Good testing as always, but in my HUMBLE opinion, it would be more useful to measure the rise in noise compared to fan off instead of absolute values.

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hondacity View Post
    OMG!!! the YL-SHC have the same output as 12038hbk on the RS120, this is just ...ummmm

    that SA-H1011 is just awesome, i gotta try one, i wonder how it sounds,

    have you started recording audio?

    Thanks Martin, go easy testing
    Yeah, I'll need to suppliment with an audio recording of some sort. I've been running a few experiements, but havn't landed on a method yet. For example, the San Ace does really really well on cfm per noise level, but it's not as smooth of a noise as some of the others. I've also read a little bit how every one person has a different sensitivity to noise and what is perceived as loud or annoying. So matter what the tool to measure noise, it's only a really rough guide and it's pretty much impossible to quantify noise that would be agreeable to everyone out there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zehnsucht View Post
    Good testing as always, but in my HUMBLE opinion, it would be more useful to measure the rise in noise compared to fan off instead of absolute values.
    I've got the ambient level recorded for every test. They are all right in there at about 47-49db. So while the relative numbers won't be much different, I could easily enough make a chart for dB rise vs noise or whatever..

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    Xtreme Addict MpG's Avatar
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    Any idea on the sound levels by position? To look at your photo, you're measuring sound from the side of the fan housing. Whereas if the meter was held in front, you'd probably get a different picture, depending on the nature of the airflow coming out of the fan.
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    SA H1011 still going strong... if we could only find more without resorting to hijacking server fans... hehehe...

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    Xtreme Member BDW88's Avatar
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    I do love my San's thanks for the testing Martin.
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    Xtreme Addict Sadasius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martinm210 View Post
    Yeah, I'll need to suppliment with an audio recording of some sort. I've been running a few experiements, but havn't landed on a method yet. For example, the San Ace does really really well on cfm per noise level, but it's not as smooth of a noise as some of the others. I've also read a little bit how every one person has a different sensitivity to noise and what is perceived as loud or annoying. So matter what the tool to measure noise, it's only a really rough guide and it's pretty much impossible to quantify noise that would be agreeable to everyone out there.
    I think a sound bite is the only way because just like you said some consider it noise while it does not bother other people. I have noticed this too on many different types of fans and users. Some fans I cannot stand the sound of while others do not bother me at all. I know most don't like the sound of the San Ace but to me it sounds good and is not annoying in the least. Delta's bother me though and will admit that. Has a high pitch whine I cannot stand.

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    Thanks for doing this, although equally I'm not quite sure to make of the data.

    If you did some recordings I suspect some analysis of the frequency of the noise might help understand which fans have more annoying noises. The human ear doesn't hear all frequencies equally, maybe there is a correlation?

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    What sort of video recording would you want to see? Is it important to see any of the guages (CFM or dB) while you listen to the sound, or is something like voltage good enough?

    I'm finding it kind of hard to keep the video camera close to the fan so the audio is very clear while video recording the guages, but I'm not sure that's important for anyone anyhow..

    My little JVC digital media recorder seems to do ok with the audio, but I'm thinking of running the video/audio on a separate pass and maybe setup the camera on a tripot or find some means to fix the measurement point so they are all the same.

    I like the idea of running the test while mounted to a radiator, there's a pretty significant increase in noise mounted, so I'm at least sure I want to do that.

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    Xtreme Addict Sadasius's Avatar
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    Maybe just edit in important information on the video's in case they are used in links in other places and such. But graphs I don't think are needed or anything like that. Just something nice and simple that does not take much to download to listen to. Just so people get a feel for the fan if they want to purchase one or not. It will help eliminate many questions from people looking for fans for their rads and stuff and listening to other people's advice when in reality the fan may not suite them at all.

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    Martins back. Yay!
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    Xtreme Addict Sadasius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [XC] riptide View Post
    Martins back. Yay!
    HAHAHA, Martin I think someone missed you and your nice clean, informative posts!
    Last edited by Sadasius; 04-30-2009 at 06:04 PM.

  18. #18
    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Thanks guys...

    The testing is going well, I updated the OP with a new set of summary charts. I'll have to probably split these up as they get more and more full, but this will work for now. 38mm fans in generally doing better than I thought, but I'm still not happy with the noise numbers themselves. I'll plan on the videos after I finish up this numbers set.
    Last edited by Martinm210; 04-30-2009 at 08:09 PM.

  19. #19
    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Updated one more time after testing the Gentle Typhoon. It managed to produce the most CFM per noise level across it's range and one of the nicests smooth sound tones so far. It also happened to be king of CFM per Watt for and takes the lead as the most "Green Fan" so far.

  20. #20
    Xtreme Member eth0s's Avatar
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    Martin:

    If you really want to accurately test sound, and/ or accurately record sound you will need to build a "quiet room". See this for an idea of what I mean: http://www.tweakheadz.com/home_studio_construction.htm [this guy's idea about building a quiet room in a closet is a bit kooky, but not half bad.]

    Remember sounds in a room combine to make noise louder. See this n00bish guide to sound for a refresher on adding logs: http://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/noise_educ...1/intro_5.html

    If you have never seen a real quiet room, it's hard to describe in words, but I'll try. First you can think about the inside of a professional recording studio, where the musicians sit. Such a room will usually have black foam rubber sound insulation that looks like 1/2 of an egg-carton covering the walls. This is good for noise reduction, but is not really quiet. To get really quiet you need to do what stereo speaker manufacturers build to test sound and noise, which is a room covered with foam insulation in the shape of 16 inch isosceles triangles, with the triangles varied in orientation. To do it right you also have to cover the floor and the ceiling as well, and you therefore have to create a suspended "floor" made of chicken wire that allows you stand above the foam insulation. I have been in one of these rooms and it's freakin' QUIET in there. You have never heard quiet, until you go into a room like that, it is actually unsettling, if you stay in there long enough without making any sound you can start to hear the air pressure on your ear drums.

    This is not a very good description of what a quiet room looks like, but maybe somebody who works in one of these places can give you some pictures, or better yet, a tour.

    Keep up the good work, your posts are truly legendary.

  21. #21
    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eth0s View Post
    Martin:

    If you really want to accurately test sound, and/ or accurately record sound you will need to build a "quiet room". See this for an idea of what I mean: http://www.tweakheadz.com/home_studio_construction.htm [this guy's idea about building a quiet room in a closet is a bit kooky, but not half bad.]

    Remember sounds in a room combine to make noise louder. See this n00bish guide to sound for a refresher on adding logs: http://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/noise_educ...1/intro_5.html

    If you have never seen a real quiet room, it's hard to describe in words, but I'll try. First you can think about the inside of a professional recording studio, where the musicians sit. Such a room will usually have black foam rubber sound insulation that looks like 1/2 of an egg-carton covering the walls. This is good for noise reduction, but is not really quiet. To get really quiet you need to do what stereo speaker manufacturers build to test sound and noise, which is a room covered with foam insulation in the shape of 16 inch isosceles triangles, with the triangles varied in orientation. To do it right you also have to cover the floor and the ceiling as well, and you therefore have to create a suspended "floor" made of chicken wire that allows you stand above the foam insulation. I have been in one of these rooms and it's freakin' QUIET in there. You have never heard quiet, until you go into a room like that, it is actually unsettling, if you stay in there long enough without making any sound you can start to hear the air pressure on your ear drums.

    This is not a very good description of what a quiet room looks like, but maybe somebody who works in one of these places can give you some pictures, or better yet, a tour.

    Keep up the good work, your posts are truly legendary.
    That would be neat, but way outside the scope of effort I'm interested in. If my wife caught me building a quiet room, she'd lock me in there for sure and I'd have plenty of time to think about my priorities...lol! Definately something for those audio engineers and folks though.

    With pure silence out of my grasp, I think I'm doing the next best thing in maintaining a relatively constant level of ambient noise by purposely running my PC in the background. In addition the measurement at point blank range seems to make all the difference regarding how susceptible the noise measurements are to ambient noises. So far this method seems to be producing good repeatable results, better than I expected, so I'm good with it.

    If I manage enough time, I should finish this round of testing this weekend and publish an update.

  22. #22
    Xtreme Addict Sadasius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martinm210 View Post
    That would be neat, but way outside the scope of effort I'm interested in. If my wife caught me building a quiet room, she'd lock me in there for sure and I'd have plenty of time to think about my priorities...lol!
    Yup and my ol lady would do the same to me. It's bad enough I try to sneak orders here and there from time to time.

  23. #23
    Xtreme Member Freaky Freezer's Avatar
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    Great tests Martin. Very useful info for everyone, you have my appreciation. If I can bother everyone in this thread with a few questions though:

    How is the longevity of the San Ace's? Is Petra's the only place they can be found? And Martin (or anyone else who has experience with both), how does the noise from the San Ace compare to the noise from an S-Flex-E/F/G?
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freaky Freezer View Post
    Great tests Martin. Very useful info for everyone, you have my appreciation. If I can bother everyone in this thread with a few questions though:

    How is the longevity of the San Ace's? Is Petra's the only place they can be found? And Martin (or anyone else who has experience with both), how does the noise from the San Ace compare to the noise from an S-Flex-E/F/G?
    I haven't quite put my finger on why, but I personally like the smoother noise from 25mm fans like the S-flex.

    The S-flex's aren't really becoming top dB performers though. My G model for some reason is actually fairly poor. E and F models are only falling in the middle of the pack. And to my surprise, the "Kama" flex models are doing slightly better than the "G" series.

    It's getting terribly crowded already and I'm not even done...yet, but getting close. I'll have to figure out a way to split some of these out into multiple charts so you can actually read them.



    My personal favorite is the Gentle Typhoon, it really has amazing cfm/dB ratios across the voltage range. At least for this first test, I'll do some checking to make sure I can repeat the results as well.
    Last edited by Martinm210; 05-01-2009 at 11:48 PM.

  25. #25
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    If they could only make a higher speed gentle typhoon lol, I love it's CFM/dba but it just doesn't go high enough for me.

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