The assembled system case is tested at a constant ambient temperature of 23°C maintained by an air conditioner. As we assume that most users prefer low-noise system cases, we set the speed of the CPU and system fans (those connected to the mainboard’s 3-pin connector) into Silent mode (the quietest mode on ASUS mainboards). If the system case has its own speed controller, the fans connected to it are set at the lowest speed, too, whenever possible. We do not change the default configuration of airflows determined by the system case design.
The following components are installed into the system case:
- ASUS P5E mainboard
- Core 2 Duo E6850 processor
- Zalman CNPS9500 AT cooler
- Four hard disk drives Western Digital Raptor WD740GD
- HIS IceQ3 Radeon HD 3870 graphics card
- 2GB DDR2-800 SDRAM Patriot PDC24G6400LLK
- Enermax MODU82+ EMD525AWT power supply (the system case came to us without a PSU)
- Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2
The CPU temperature is read with ASUS PC Probe included with the mainboard. The temperature of the HDDs is measured with HDD Thermometer. The graphics card’s temperature is reported by its control panel. The speed of the fans was measured with an optical tachometer Velleman DTO2234.
There are the following test modes:
- IOMeter (IOMeter’s Access Time test running on all the HDDs to load them fully)
- Prime95 (Prime95 running in In-Place Large FFTs mode to load both CPU cores fully)
- 3DMark06 (3DMark06 running at 1280x1024 with maximum graphics quality settings)
Every temperature is read after the system has worked for half an hour in the current test mode. As a kind of reference point, here are the results of the same configuration assembled without a case (“open testbed”).
Temperature in open stand, °C
The noise level is evaluated subjectively.