Can Airflow Happen Quietly?
To some degree, we already know answers to this question. For instance, certain fans do a great job with this. Custom water loops are also great in this area. On the other hand, cases tend to be on one side or the other. The reason for this is simple. On one side, cases use noise dampening materials and tiny spaces for air intake to control noise. For near silence, quiet fans are usually preferred as well. On the other, a case has lots of wide open mesh spaces for tons of airflow. After that, the fans are usually RPM limited so they aren’t too loud, but silent fans aren’t a priority either. The Phanteks Eclipse P600s might be the best of both worlds.
Eclipse P600s and Fabric Mesh
Mesh panels are either plastic, or metal material with tiny little holes to help catch dust before going into the system. There’s a couple of problems with this. For starters, a single layer of protection is more ineffective at stopping dust than multiple layers. Some cases use two to three layers of mesh, but airflow gets stifled quickly in that set up. The other issue is the design does little to impact noise. Sound travels by vibrating the air molecules around it. Not only will the tiny holes be more than enough for sound to push air molecules around, but solid objects like plastic and metal can push sound waves by vibration as well.
Now we can understand why cloth is more effective for dust and noise. The multiple layers of fibers create a tighter mesh for dust particles to get caught on. Even the individual strands of cloth are likely to have micro fibers sticking out from the edges, adding more resistance to air born particles. Since cloth isn’t as solid as the aforementioned materials, the vibrations from noise are absorbed in the material. Hence the reason that the case can be silent. However, the porous nature of cloth allows air molecules to flow freely into the case.
Silence, Yet so Much More
Now you see why I could barely hear a whisper when I got to check out the Eclipse P600s at CES. It astounded me how much of a difference opening the side panel made when trying to hear the fan noise. Still, I could feel impressive airflow from the fans on the other side. After being surprised by the silent design, I was impressed at how many features this case had on top of that. To start with, quality of materials was excellent. Another great feature was the size and position of the fan hub. Also, Phanteks has an amazing cable management system in that case. I have to say, I was impressed immensely by the design.
And I haven’t even touched on everything else Phanteks had to offer. Not only did they have a prototype of the Enthoo Luxe 2 on display, but there were several RTX 2080 Ti water blocks as well. Even Metallic Gear, the sub brand of Phanteks, was on full display. It took me just over 20 minutes to cover it all in my video. Check it out and come back soon for the last bit of our CES coverage.