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Noctua demo a CPU cooler with active noise cancellation

by Mark Tyson on 17 June 2013, 13:30

Tags: Noctua, PC

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qabxqr

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Noctua, a specialist cooling company which makes “sound optimised premium components”, has partnered with RotoSub to produce the world’s first CPU cooler with active noise cancellation (ANC) built-in.

The Noctua ANC Project is based upon “the award winning” NH-D14 heatsink by the company. The heatsink assembly combines with an NF-A14 140mm fan and a FocusedFlow system paired with anti-vibration pads, ANC magnets, an ANC microphone, a RotoSub ANC controller and custom hood assembly to complete the cooling system.

As is common with ANCs the system uses a microphone to listen to fan vibrations. However sound of these vibrations is cancelled out, phase destroyed, by adjusting an electromagnet to influence tiny magnets installed at the tip of each fan blade. “The patented RotoSub® ANC technology allows the fan itself to emit the anti-noise signal through minute modulations of the fan blades, which are achieved by switching on and off a coil within the fan frame that interacts with magnets inside the blade tips. This way, the anti-noise comes from the exact same position as the original noise and precisely matches its phase and rotation pattern,” explains a Noctua blog post.

As you can see and hear in the video, the Noctua ANC Project electronics being turned on and off does seem to have a marked effect on the noise produced by the system. With the ANC system on you can’t hear much more than the sound of the air flow.

The Noctua ANC Project is only aimed at CPUs in this prototype for now but there seems no reason why it couldn’t be used for coolers in other components which contribute to the noise in your PC system. Whether it is practical or not as a quiet PC solution will depend a lot upon the pricing of the unit, if it gets to market.



HEXUS Forums :: 9 Comments

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Pretty clever. That said, I'm very satisfied with the noise level that my D14 produces. In which case wouldn't this tech be better employed on coolers that use smaller/faster-running fans. Like, for example, the HTPC-compatible ones that Noctua make?
It looks like a smart solution. And expensive too. :D
Smart idea but is it really needed, by far and large the only thing i can hear in my case is the GPU, CPU/Case Fans don't make a whisper compared to it. Might be good if they sell the tech on to GPU makers.
Jasp
Smart idea but is it really needed, by far and large the only thing i can hear in my case is the GPU, CPU/Case Fans don't make a whisper compared to it. Might be good if they sell the tech on to GPU makers.

It would be really good if they could fit all this into a standard 120mm or 140mm fan housing. That way you could the fans just about anywhere and still benefit.

I'd love to have this in my water cooling system. It's not that noisy, and it cools really well, but adding these fans to it would be great!
valhar2000
It would be really good if they could fit all this into a standard 120mm or 140mm fan housing. That way you could the fans just about anywhere and still benefit.
I think I know what you're getting at - replace those 200mm+ fans that are used for case cooling with something a little more “petite” so you can get the same cooling & noise in a smaller case.

That said, what I'd want is that tech used on the sub-100mm fans. Especially the one that the old fella's got in his Shuttle PC. That 80mm one whines like a bored 5 year old on a rainy bank holiday. :(

Biggest problem I've got at the moment (with my HAF932 rig) is that one of the 120mil's has developed a intermittent rattle, smack it and the rattle goes away for a while. And the rig is so quiet that this is VERY noticable. Got to wonder if I've got a worn bearing - the fan concerned is the case exhaust for the cpu cooler so it's well used.

Both my current GPU (Radeon 7990) and the previous one (Geforce 460SOC) were pretty quiet - fan speeds have/had to exceed 50% of max to make a noticable noise and it was only at 60-75%+ that I'd call it noisy (as in “hoover like”).