People tend to get frustrated with noisy computers in a similar way they do with crying babies on planes – they expect them to just magically get quiet. However, the good news is you have much more control over the noise your gaming baby makes than parents do over the sounds coming from theirs, and that’s because there’s a lot more reason and logic behind the former.
In that spirit, Inside Tech has put together some ways to make your PC operate much more quietly, and respectively efficiently.
Keep it Cool
Noise often comes from your fans working extra hard to keep your PC cool. And unless you’re gaming or performing a demanding activity, or in other words, doing something extra, your fans shouldn’t have to work extra hard. If they do, that’s a clear sign something undesired is making their job harder.
There are a couple of usual suspects.
If you can’t really remember when was the last time you dusted your PC inside and out, it has most likely been too long. Dust builds up on the fans and heatsink, making your machine hotter, and respectively louder.
You can use a can of compressed air, or just a brush – either way, some dusting can go a long way in making your PC quitter, especially if it’s been so long that cob webs have started to form.
Keeping Air Passages Unobstructed
Another reason why your fans might be struggling is obstructed air passages. Maybe you’ve put your PC right next to a wall, or directly on the carpet – such positions can cause your machine to heat up very quickly. Think about when you’ve had your laptop on your lap in bed, restricting its ability to breathe – all of a sudden, you have an electric blanket.
If you have your PC on the carpet, putting cardboard underneath it is an easy and practical solution that still involves your carpet staying.
Replacing Your Fans
Bear in mind that quite often, perhaps even more often than not, the fans that come with your PC aren’t the crème of the crop, in any regard. Not only are they loud by default, but they aren’t too good at cooling, either, which creates a vicious circle, but the good news it’s easily breakable. Just get new cooling equipment and kill two birds with one stone.
There are a few routes of action you can take.
One is getting better fans, duh. Just make sure that the new fans are the appropriate size, as there’s only one – the slot in your case and the fan have to be an exact match. Brands like Be Quiet! And Noctua has made a name for themselves for keeping PCs cool in an efficient and seamless manner.
There might be an extra fan slot in your case that’s not being utilized. If so, then you can first fill it with a fan and see how that works out before changing the rest of them.
Adding an aftermarket coolant is another viable option that will certainly make a difference. Heatsinks tend to come to mind first, as they are effective, yet cheap, at roughly $30 for a plain CPU cooler, and a little over $40 for a graphic card one.
If you think stronger measures are required, then a water coolant is the way to go. It employs a radiator that also needs fans in itself, but the overall efficiency of the cooling system is bound to improve.
If you’re unsure which route to take, all-in-one coolers like the famous Corsair Hydro series offer a bit of both worlds in a closed loop, and at a decent price at that.
Fan controllers are a very practical purchase that will make your life easier and quieter as they take care of a simple, yet fundamental problem – the lack of control over your fans’ work schedule, and respectively the associated noise levels.
With this device, your fans can keep quiet when your PC is taking it easy, and be loud when you are gaming hard or carrying out other intensive tasks, during which some fan noise won’t be an issue anyway.
Fan controllers are extremely handy if you have an arsenal of fans that you need to coordinate and keep in line. A lot of them provide monitoring options for hardware temperature as well.
Lower Fan Speed
You should do this only if you are absolutely sure your PC is maintaining a healthy temperature. You can usually do that from the BIOS, or a Windows app if your manufacturer offers one.
A noisy computer is a nuisance, but luckily, it’s not one of those computer issues that seem to come out of nowhere. Follow one or a combination of those tips, and your PC will become a smooth operator and a silent assassin.