Silent Audio Recording PC

Hi guys, sometime soon when i have more money i'm thinking of building a PC specifically for my audio recording/editing/mixing etc. These PC's normally follow most of the quidelines for building a regular workstation but also need a fast hard drive and to be as quiet as possible. The plan is to build it with the lowest power consumption i can manage, that should equal low noise. A few other things i should mention, firewire support would be a bonus but not needed. Also, these programs would make use of big 6 core processors and 16GB of RAM but it really isn't necessary. I used to get by with 3GB and a Core 2 Duo completely fine.

So the proposed build is:

Intel Core i3-2100T - Low power consumption and will be enough for my purposes. Are the integrated graphics here good enough to run a 1920x1080 monitor? Not doing anything visually demanding, enough power to watch 1080P movies would be fine.

2x4GB 1333Mhz RAM - Not sure on the brand but will go with whatever is cheapest out of something like Ripjaws or XMS3.

Unsure on Motherboard - Just need something cheap, preferably with 16GB Maximum RAM and Firewire. mATX or ATX is fine. HDMI input would be nice but not necessary. Integrated sound is unimportant as i will use an external audio interface.

Fractal Design Define R3 - I think the white version of this case looks pretty awesome and am i right in thinking that it is very quiet? If not, which cases are quieter?

Antec Phantom 350 - Not quite sure whether a fanless PSU will actually be worth it but it's an idea. Would a particularly quiet regular PSU be a better idea? Any ideas on >250W Quiet PSU's?

ZALMAN CNPS 7500-Cu - I'm guessing this is a quiet cooler, if not does anyone have any ideas on cheap and quiet CPU coolers? Cooling performance isn't really an issue as the stock fan would easily be enough for that. Just want quietness.

OCZ Vertex 3 60GB - Should be plenty of space for OS and a few audio editing programs then ill use an external drive for anything i write/record.

So, can anyone see anywhere where i can improve performance or cut the price? Or more importantly, make it quieter. Also, i am open to the idea of a Mini-ITX system but i don't really mind either way to be honest.

EDIT: Just remembered something else, support for dual monitors would be great too. I realise that this may mean adding a graphics card, something like a passive cooled GT 430?


Jul 18, 2011
tl;dr, get SSDs if you want silence hardrives. hardwares are pretty silent now days, also, if you want to record, why not just extend a microphone into anoter, perhaps soundproof room?
Yeah i did put a SSD in there. Also, i am likely to be moving around a lot in the next few years so i am just preparing in case i don't have that option. Also if i have a very small amount of background noise it isn't much of a problem as i can just gate the noise.