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Fan Noise Reduction ArticleReturn to News Page

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Still More Quicksilver G4 Noise Reduction Mods
By Kelly
Published: 9/7/2001

Disclaimer/Caution: The author nor the site publisher assumes any liability for modifications you make to the original system, cooling, etc. which may void the warranty and may affect short or long term reliability. (I'm as tired of posting these disclaimers are you are of reading them...)

Like several others, I have been BIG TIME irritated by the amount of noise coming out of my new G4 867 Quicksilver. Its even worse for me, as my previous computer was the wonderfully silent Cube. Ive been beating myself up over selling my Cube, since the day I took my Quicksilver out of the box and fired it up.

"Old Howler" as I have come to UN-affectionately call her, had been really getting on my nerves. For the same company that released the fanless iMacs, and the fanless G4 Cube, to put this $2500.00 nerve rattler on the market is inexcusable in my opinion. Doesn't Apple ever had someone sit in a room and USE the prototypes before they start building?

Anyway, I checked your site, and did several of the modifications that others have tried. [See the related links below for those articles-Mike] Namely, cutting away the finger guard on the power supply, and replacing the main case fan (the big 120mm unit in the side of the case) with a quieter, Panaflow 120-L1A unit from 2Cooltek:

I had also removed the screws that hold my CPU cooling fan in its shroud, but this didnt seem to make any difference. Other readers had mentioned that the screws holding the fan in thier shroud were actually touching the heat sink on the processor. This was not the case in my computer, so I assume this is why it made no difference in my case.

While the other modifications did help somewhat, I still had a persistant howling noise that I could hear from other rooms in my house, much less while working at the computer.

I had thought about getting a quieter fan for the CPU, or enlarging the holes in the back of the case where the CPU fan draws its air in, but I really didnt want to deface the case. It was while I was examining this possibility that I came up with THE silencer.

If you look at the shroud that holds the CPU heatsink fan, you will notice it has a large slot in the top of it (see photos).

fan shroud

For the life of me, I couldnt see WHY this slot was there. If you watch how the slot is positioned as you close the side of the case, it basically butts up to the side of the power supply. I cant see where it draws ANY air from ANY place of consequence, especially with the fan having that large holed opening in the case to draw air thought. I also examined an older 733 we have at work, which has a shroud that completly covers the heat sink, to see if there was ANY good reason for that slot in the shroud. Nothing I could see or imagine.

Mike, cover that slot (I used a piece of black electritions tape) and guess what? The gawd awful howling is gone. That slot causes the fan to try and suck air through the seam where the case closes, causing the howl. This made an INCREDIBLE difference. I can literally barely hear my G4 now. Just some very quiet fan noise.. but no howling or whistling anymore.

fan shroud mod

I hope this can help with other readers noisy Quicksilvers. I know I was about to put mine on Ebay and try to find another Cube it was bothering me so much. Thats pretty bad when your willing to take a 45 percent speed hit to get away from the noise of a Quicksilver.

I'm asking Kelly to report if he notices any increased temperatures from blocking this slot. (Unfortunately G4s don't provide accurate temperature reporting and as noted recently on the main site news, the rev 2.1 7450 has the feature removed from the CPU.)

Other Fan/Noise Related Articles:

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