Last week I posted these questions on the XPS desktop board. I would like to get some feedback from the Alienware R7 users regarding minimizing fan noise. Specifically if liquid cooling really lowers the fan noise even when the computer is NOT mainly used for gaming. Or is the fan noise the same for the air cooled unit (either XPS 8930 or R7) in that situation.
Following is the information I posted on the XPS board:
Currently I have a XPS 435T/9000 I bought in 2009 with a Core i7 920 CPU and ATI Radeon HD 4800. It runs very quiet, the fans hardly noticeable. I listen to music on my computer through speakers; I cannot use headphones. Now I want/need to replace the 435T with something new. I looked at the XPS 8930 with the i7 8700, 16 GB ram, 256 GB SSD and 1 TB HDD. For the graphics card I thought the GTX 1060 would be somewhere in the middle of capabilities and sufficient for now. I am not a gamer, but I don't want to limit myself in the future (my nephew could use it for games). I noticed that the case is much smaller than my old 435T. With the high power CPU, graphics card and PSU crowding the available space, I am afraid that the temps will be high and the fans will be loud, as I found complaints about this in several posts already. That is when I started to look at the Aurora R7 because of the liquid cooling option which is not available on the 8930. As far as I can tell I would need to go to the GTX 1070 for the graphics card in the R7. I am willing to pay the extra cost just to have a silent computer on my desk so I can listen to my music without the fan noise.
Another concern is the PSU. The standard PSU is only 460W. The load on the PSU as a percentage of the total power rating would be quite high, degrading the components in the PSU and causing premature failure. Does anyone think that I am overly conservative in this respect or should I spring for the 850W unit with liquid cooling anyway. BTW, the Aurora case is not one I would select but it doesn't look outrageous so I can live with it.
I appreciate any advice and comments to make my decision a more informed one.