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Which 100% Silent PC?

 
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nick



Joined: 31 Jul 2017
Posts: 5
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 4:04 pm    Post subject: Which 100% Silent PC? Reply with quote

I have a very quiet PC but it is not "dead" silent. I need a 100% SILENT PC.

There are fanless PCs but they often have GPUs that have fans!

Saw a post about Intel Stick PCs, which look like a dongle and run about $125 or so. That got me looking around and I found this:

MINIX NEO Z83-4, Intel Cherry Trail Fanless Mini PC Windows 10

and this; Wintel T8 Fanless Mini PC Intel Cherry Trail Z8300 Quad Core

Both state in their ad that they are absolutely silent. Current price is $180 and $110 respectively, at Amazon.

I do prefer this desktop form factor over a dongle. Would like to keep the price under $250

Do any of you use one of these? If so, are you happy with them? Do they do the job? Any recommendations for another make or model?

Oh, BTW, I would have posted links to Amazon where I found these but for some reason, when I copy and paste Amazon links, and someone follows that link, it opens up to my personal account, or so it seems. So, you will have to copy the model numbers and search for yourself, if you are interested enough to do that!
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SteveToner
Contributor


Joined: 03 Oct 2016
Posts: 41
Location: LA & Sundance

PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a MINIX NEO Z83-4 in my alternate work space. Seems fine for basic audio editing tasks (I use a standalone recorder so can't comment on how well it works with any interface - I have a cheapo DAC I got at Fry's that drives the monitors) and web access. Woefully slow for video editing (rendering), though. It is fanless. It is silent. It hasn't overheated. I'm not really sure it needs the 4MB of RAM, though, as when I run status it rarely goes over 2MB of actual usage.
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nick



Joined: 31 Jul 2017
Posts: 5
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve, thank you for that information.

I am still researching this purchase but you have set the Minix as the standard for comparison.
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DenaliDave
Been Here Awhile


Joined: 09 Jan 2016
Posts: 291
Location: Anchorage, Alaska

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been away for a while (life stuff) -- but have recently been in the process of building a brand new studio for myself from scratch.

Like you, I also wanted to run silent computers. I saw the stick PC's and the mini hockey puck PC's as well.

What I finally ended up with is a 2 computer setup.

I use a Macbook Air that's connected to my audio interface to record on. I've never heard it make any noise, so I see no reason to discontinue using it or seek another option.

Now, what about that other computer? I did say I have two...

Well, I decided that for my new studio I was DONE trying to read off of a tablet and using my fingers to move pages. I was tired of never really having the tablet in the right position. No...I needed a regular monitor and a mouse with a scroll wheel. It's just much more comfortable to read off a screen at eye-level at the proper distance.

So -- I looked at those stick PCs and those mini PCs. Man, they're all over $100 and probably have bells and whistles I don't need. I'm just reading Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF documents, right?

So -- I went with a Raspberry Pi microcomputer. It's solid state, no moving parts or fans. It looks a lot like Windows and has no problems opening text documents. It was also $49.

It has HDMI for a monitor, WiFi, 4 USB ports and expandable MicroSD storage. I got a nice little housing for it that looks like an original Nintendo.

The monitor was $99 brand new on Amazon, and the Raspberry Pi + Case was $69. So...for $169 I have a 21" LCD and a tiny computer to read scripts off of. It's even powerful enough to browse the web and do most basic things.

And best of all, I can plug my more powerful computers into the monitor via the HDMI port and edit/master on the larger screen whenever I need to.
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DenaliDave
Been Here Awhile


Joined: 09 Jan 2016
Posts: 291
Location: Anchorage, Alaska

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And apparently you can run Audacity to record sound on a Raspberry Pi as well just fine (I just learned this because I was curious).

Mini Recording Studio

The guy in the tutorial is using a USB microphone, which wouldn't be my go-to solution. Although, Apogee and Rode both now make pretty good USB microphones from what I hear. People seem to like them for travel rigs.

If you can use a USB microphone with the Raspberry Pi into Audacity, it might not be a stretch to use a USB audio interface either.
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nick



Joined: 31 Jul 2017
Posts: 5
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, thanks for that response.

I actually ordered a mini-computer from China a few days ago. It is by a company called "XCY". The model is X31. I went overboard as I usually do and wound up paying $420 for it. It runs Windows 10 with an i5 processor, 8GB RAM and 128 SSD. I want to keep it lean and mean and off the Internet. Will be loading only Audacity and perhaps another DAW, down the road. This will be used for VO only, nothing else.

I don't know if this X31 is upgradeable or not. When I get it, I will open it up and see if there is an empty ram slot in there. If there is, I will throw another 8GB stick in there. I have Sonar Home Studio on my desktop computer and the minimum requirement for that is an i5 with 8GB ram and 20GB disc space, so I am glad that I got the X31 as a minimum. IDK, I hope I like it when I get it.
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Ed Fisher
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Joined: 05 Sep 2012
Posts: 571
Location: East Coast, U.S.A.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nick wrote:

I actually ordered a mini-computer from China a few days ago. It is by a company called "XCY". The model is X31. (snip) I hope I like it when I get it.


I look forward to reading your review. Laugh
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