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Old 14th February 2003
Gear Nut
drummerman15's Avatar

I was just working on a homemade iso box this weekend and got some pretty good results. I have a G4 dual 1G and it screams. My ears get fatigued so much faster with that thing in the room. Here's what I've tried with definite success (I haven't measured a db reduction, but my ears were definitely much happier): I had an old Anvil type 19" road case (1/2" plywood) that wasn't being used that has a panel-type front and rear door. I purchased a marathon rack to hold the G4 ( - about $125 on ebay) and started looking for some thin, sound damping material. I ended up using a Coleman camping mat that I bought at Academy for $15. The material is a lot like a rigid, dense sponge. I cut it up and lined the interior of the case. I mounted the computer at the bottom of the rack, leaving some air space at the bottom. When mounting the computer, I used rubber bushings between the rack screws and the computer rack and also between the computer rack and the rack rails. This helps a bit to isolate the computer vibration. I also put big rubber caster wheels on the bottom of the case and used bushings when attaching them to help isolate any vibration from the floor. I weatherstripped the seals for the rear and front panels and passed the cords through a hole that was already in the rear panel. I sealed the doors That's as far as I got last weekend, but I tested it out and it worked great for the $150 or so I put into it so far. Now it was time to conquer the potential heat problem.

I used the G4 for about 4+ hours and continually monitored the heat. I found that having the lights on on the Furman power conditioner turned it into an oven, but the computer alone was not so bad at all. This weekend I am going to install a cooling fan with an on/off switch and speed control (Radio Shack $20) on the rear panel, apply some sound damping material to the rear door and make a cord pass. Also, I was thinking of replacing the front panel with Lexan just for looks.

I'm still experimenting with it, but it certainly did make a significant difference in the noise floor in the control room. If anyone has any suggestions or ideas for improvements, please let me know.