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Need a near silent 3TB USB 3 or USB2 external hard drive.


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Hello

I have a WD Live TV multimedia player and i want to use it as my main HiFi source. I need a very quiet USB external HD for storing a lot of FLAC files. Now i have a Ximeta 1TB that is very quiet, whith everything off and only the Ximeta on i have to stuck my ear to the body to ear that is functionning. But i want to expand to 3TB and i want something bigger faster and as quiet if possible. I bought a 2TB from LaCie that is not very quiet at all, it makes a kind of low whistling white noise i can detect that sound 10 feets of the drive...

I found the Seagate Go Flex 3TB USB 3 that seems interresting but i do not know if it quiet enough for me. Maybe i will have to buy an enclosure to put a superquiet HD with USB support?

 

Do you have suggestions base on real testings (what i need is a USB HD 3TB that you cant know its on at about let say 3 feets, when its on and functionning)

Thank you.

 

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I have the Seagate GoFlex USB drive and whilst it is not silent, I cannot hear it from 3 feet, even standing it conventionally. Mine is mounted on a simple vibration isolating platform which further reduces the sound transmitted mechanically, although that's not the entire purpose - more the isolation of the drive from its environment.

 

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I read other reviews on the Go Flex 3TB and it was not encouraging somes told that the connector between the HD and the USB interface is not very solid that can lead to malfunctionning...

The body is made from plastic, that can produce more noises, so i am not ready to buy this HD for that purpose.

Somes says the unit becomes very hot...

 

So is there any other suggestions from actual owners of a whisper quiet external USB drive >= 3TB ?

 

Maybe a combination of enclosure/hardrive successfull result story?

Budget is around $300.

 

 

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I just ordered two of these external hard drives...one for primary use and another for back-up.

 

OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro

3.0TB Quad Interface Storage Solution

FireWire 800 + FireWire 400 + USB2, + eSATA 'Quad Interface'

Link: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/MEAQ7H30TB64/

 

As background, I’ve been using Glyph products for the last few years. Glyph has been very reliable and their external hard drives are built like tanks. However, they are too loud for me and I’ve decided to go with a fanless approach.

 

According to tech support at OWC, the Mercury Elite-AL Pro hard drives are whisper silent.

 

The following specs sold me on the purchase:

 

* New Oxford Semiconductor 944 chipset (OXUF944SE)

* 3.0TB Hitachi 7K3000 drive

* FireWire 800

* Fanless for quiet operation

* Aluminum enclosure for good heat dissipation

* Reasonably priced at $309 each

 

Possible downside considerations are:

 

* Overheating due to fanless design combined with my environment?

* Noise from auto switching power supply?

 

I spoke with someone about building a custom 3 Amp DC 12V linear power supply. The cost could be $500 each. DIY options could be $50 to $100. For now, I plan on using the stock power supply with an upgraded power cord already on hand.

 

My long-term plan is to upgrade both computer and external storage after more Thunderbolt options are available. In the interim, I hope OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro can live up to high expectations for a low noise floor.

 

I’ll report back after listening and experiencing noise levels first-hand.

 

For additional background and comments, I found this CA discussion helpful and informative:

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/Oyen-Data-Tale-or-OWC-Mercury-Elite-AL-Pro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amarra 3.0.3/iTunes-->AQVOX USB PS-->Acromag USB Isolator-->Ayre QB-9-->Ayre K-5xeMP-->W4S SX-500-->Tyler Acoustics Linbrook Super Towers-->SVS SB12-Plus (L&R). Cables: Nordost, Transparent, LessLoss, Analysis Plus & Pangea. Dedicated line with isolated power conditioning per component: PS Audio & Furman. Late 2012 Mac Mini 2.6GHz Quad-Core i7 (16 GB, 1TB Fusion, 6TB ext via Tbolt). External drives enclosure http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f7-disk-storage-music-library-storage/silent-enclosure-external-hard-drives-7178/

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Two OWC external hard drives arrived a few days ago. It took about 36 hours to move my iTunes library.

 

One 3TB OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro is up & running. It’s not what I consider whisper quiet or silent.

 

Measuring with a digital sound level meter, I’ve compared the OWC to Glyph (results below). I should mention that my external hard drives are placed on a well-isolated platform with surrounding Auralex Studiofoam for sound absorption. Environmentally, it’s the best approach I’ve found to-date. Sound level measurements were taken three to six inches of the hard drives (each independently, only one powered while testing).

 

3TB OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro (single 3TB drive and fanless)

* 62 to 61 dB in front

* 60 to 59 dB on the side

 

3TB Glyph GT062E (two 1.5 TB dives in RAID 0 with built-in fan)

* 65 to 63 dB in front

* 64 to 62 dB on the side

 

To put these results in context, here is a table of sound levels (dB) and relative loudness of typical noise sources.

http://www.rcaanews.org/noiselev.htm

 

From my listening position, the OWC fanless drive is an improvement over the Glyph drive. To my ear, it sounds about half as loud. The Glyph’s fan noise is a lot more noticeable.

 

I plan to keep the OWC drives until a “whisper quiet” 3TB+ external drive is found. For silent operation, I may need to pop a whole in the wall and relocate hard drives in an adjacent room behind my equipment rack.

 

Has anyone found a “near silent” 3TB external hard drive?

 

 

 

Amarra 3.0.3/iTunes-->AQVOX USB PS-->Acromag USB Isolator-->Ayre QB-9-->Ayre K-5xeMP-->W4S SX-500-->Tyler Acoustics Linbrook Super Towers-->SVS SB12-Plus (L&R). Cables: Nordost, Transparent, LessLoss, Analysis Plus & Pangea. Dedicated line with isolated power conditioning per component: PS Audio & Furman. Late 2012 Mac Mini 2.6GHz Quad-Core i7 (16 GB, 1TB Fusion, 6TB ext via Tbolt). External drives enclosure http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f7-disk-storage-music-library-storage/silent-enclosure-external-hard-drives-7178/

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Hello everyone!

 

I finally bought the Goflex 3TB USB3 hard drive, i decided that i will test it myself.

It's definitly not silent. It makes more noise than my LaCie 2TB hard drive. I can detect the sound as far as 10 feets from it.

So i decided to use the GoFlex as backup purpose on my PC, and i will use my less noisy LaCie instead in my listening room.

What i plan to do is making some kind of sound absorbing noise box with slow ventilating fan to put my hard drive. If someone has some ideas on this i'am interrested.

I know the LaCie 2TB hard drive is very quiet but i'm very very picky and my wife consider me as too perfectionist, and she can't hear that sound....

But for the moment i will wait for a real silent solution in the future, maybe SSD drive when they will be more affordables...

Thank you all!

 

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  • 1 month later...

I guess that we will have to wait a few more years to get totally silent large capacity storage based on SSDs.

 

For now the best solution is a fanless disk driven by a software able to play from memory which results in no disk access during replay.

 

Cheers,

Bernard

 

 

Room: Gik Acoustics room conditioning | Power: Shunyata Omega XC + Shunyata Everest + Shunyata Sigma NR v2 power cables | Source: Mac mini with LPS running Roon core (Raat) | Ethernet: Sonore OpticalModule + Melco S10 + Shunyata Omega Ethernet | Dac/Pre/Amplification: Devialet D1000 Pro Core Infinity | Speakers: Chord Company Sarum T speaker cables + Wilson Benesch Act One Evolution P1

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  • 5 months later...

I used to have a Lacie drive but it is indeed way too loud! Too much clicking and scratching that I think its trying to speak to me in morse code. I used to use it to keep movies, and pictures, but now I've upgraded to one of those online storage services to store most of my stuff, and am waiting for Amazon or Google to start offering some sort of cloud ownership of movies, its only a matter of time!

 

In the mean time my Lacie sits around, collecting more dust than data - maybe I'll sell it as a collectible one day?

 

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I notice a slight sound from my “Seagate Goflex 3TB USB 3 HDD” from where I set when no music is playing. I decided to use the small amazon box that you get when you order a couple of CDs/DVDs. It has just enough room to allow air flow through a few ¾” holes I drilled into the box which keeps the unit from overheating. I then placed the drive inside and closed it up via Velcro strap around the box. It sets on the floor behind my equipment rack. Now it is dead silent. Cost was free. Box like picture below. I also painted it flat black.

 

 

 

My Dedicated 2CH System Gallery

 

Custom C.A.P.S. Reference Music Server with UpTone Audio JS-2 External Linear Power Supply > Bel Canto REFLink Asynchronous USB Converter > AT&T ST Optical Glass Fiber > Bel Canto DAC3.7 DAC > Pass Labs XP-20 Preamp > Pass Labs XA160.5 Class A Mono Blocks > Martin Logan Summit X Speakers

 

Powered By Balanced Power Technologies - UpTone Audio JS-2 Linear Power Supply - CyberPower Sinewave UPS

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Digital Sources: Optimised HP TouchSmart PC/CEC TL-1X CD Player/AMR DP-777 DAC/Theta Digital DS Pro Basic II (old)

Analogue Sources:Koetsu Jade Platinum MC Cartridge/Tri-Planar arm/Kuzma Stabi Reference turntable/AMR PH-77 Phono Stage

Amplifiers:The Gryphon Elektra Preamplifier/Convergent Audio Technology JL2 Signature Mk 2 Stereo Amplifier

Speakers:Kharma Grand Ceramique Midi[br]Cables:Nordost Valhalla (interconnect and speaker cables)/Shunyata Research power Snakes power cables

Portable: Sony PHA-1/PHA-2; Dragonfly 1.0/1.2; Meridian Explorer, Director; iFi nano iDSD, micro iDAC, micro iDSD; Geek Out; Hdta Serenade DSD

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