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Old 02-22-2014, 08:58 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Default Questions regarding the 900D hard drive cages and sleds

As the title says, I have two questions regarding the hard drive cages and sleds for the Corsair 900D.

(Worth mentioning that aside from the following I am very pleased with the case as a whole!)

Question number one is this:
On the cages, there is a hole that lines up with a hole on a sled. There's just the one hole, and just on one side. See picture, where the mystery holes in question are encircled in red:


I'm curious and a bit stumped as to what that hole is for. As far as I've been able to see, there are no threads for any of the supplied screws to screw into. Does it have a purpose or is it just there?


And, question number two (which is a bit of an opinion as well):
I'm more than a little saddened by the quality of the sleds themselves. I don't think I've ever come across such a cheap feeling plastic in a computer before. Additionally, the (seemingly) mandatory screwless design is causing all sorts of vibration and resonance noise problems. The hard drives (which unfortunately lack AAM settings (Seagate + WD)) are easily the loudest things in my case, and their vibration can be felt on anything near the computer when running (floor, desk, etc).
On previous cases I've owned you could pop out the little rubber vibration-dampening things and use good old fashioned screws. On these, no such luck. The sleds are just too wide for it to really work without seriously bending and breaking the plastic.
Additionally, there's really nothing to prevent the sleds from vibrating all over the cages, which in turn causes more vibrations further in the case as a whole.

Now, the real question number two is this: Has anyone had any success in reducing noise and vibrations from the hard drives in any way? I can't even begin to imagine what it must sound like if you were to use two or three cages at once!
Have I perhaps missed some sort of non-screwless mounting kit that came with the case?
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  #2  
Old 02-22-2014, 09:17 AM
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Yes, buy SSD's :).

You are absolutely right, these cages scare me to death that I am going to break them when I putting drives in them. I did have one the hinge rod came out of, but I was lucky it did not hit the floor and I was able to fix it.
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Old 02-23-2014, 05:15 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Indeed! SSDs would solve much. Though still very expensive :(
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Old 03-01-2014, 09:40 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Right, while I don't meant to unnecessarily bump a thread, I'm a bit furious at this point at the design of the drive cages and the sleds.

My current problem is this: The well-documented (on forums) problem of beat frequencies when you have two hard drives that run at very slightly different speeds. Both drives are 7200 RPM, but of course they're not running at exactly the same speed.

Normally, a solution to this entails propping up the drives on some rubber grommets, o-rings, or rubber pads. Try to isolate at least one of the drives as much as possible from the other so that the vibrations from both drives do not interfere with each other and cause that "oscillating hum" which increases and decreases in intensity ever few seconds.

However, from my fiddling under the past week this is proving to be near impossible with the 900D's drive mounting system.

I can more or less squeeze some rubber in between the drive and the sled, isolating the drive by at least a few fractions of a millimeter from the ineffective rubber mounts on the sled. However, that's not the whole story. The sleds themselves can in no way be effectively isolated from the cage as a whole. The rails on the cage that the sled slides into are only 0.1~0.3mm (if even that) from the sled on all sides. There's simply no room anywhere to put any sort of dampening material to keep the sleds from vibrating all over the cage, negating any dampening done on the drive to the sled.

Although unfortunately, using rubber to prop the drive up on the sled has proven to be largely ineffective at stopping any sort of noise or vibration.

Furthermore, the sleds cannot be physically secured to the cage by any means (as far as I can tell). So again, even by that method there's no way of reducing vibrations.


To conclude, I really am hoping that I've missed something, and that I'm not the only one having issues with hard drive vibration with this case. Buying SSDs is simply not an option given that they still cost many times more than a conventional mechanical disk.
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Old 03-01-2014, 10:09 AM
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Are you pushing it in all the way, The sled door should be sitting inside the cage by a half inch when you get it secured. I have to fiddle with mine to get them in, the door swings shut right at the front of the cage, you I have to push it back farther and it feels like its going to break, but it locks in place.
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Old 03-01-2014, 11:35 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Yep, the drives are as far in as they'll go. Up to those little tabs at the rear of the cage. The door is securely locking in as well.

Worth noting that I've tried both cages with the hotswap "backplate" and without, with really the same result.
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Old 03-01-2014, 08:48 PM
deees deees is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northwoods View Post
As the title says, I have two questions regarding the hard drive cages and sleds for the Corsair 900D.

Question number one is this:
On the cages, there is a hole that lines up with a hole on a sled. There's just the one hole, and just on one side. See picture, where the mystery holes in question are encircled in red:


I'm curious and a bit stumped as to what that hole is for. As far as I've been able to see, there are no threads for any of the supplied screws to screw into. Does it have a purpose or is it just there?
My guess is that is for System Builder, (who'll be shipping whole systems), to allow them to lock the populated sleds into the cages for security.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Northwoods View Post

Now, the real question number two is this: Has anyone had any success in reducing noise and vibrations from the hard drives in any way? I can't even begin to imagine what it must sound like if you were to use two or three cages at once!
I'm running 6 harddrives in the two non-hotswap cages. 1 SSD and 5 x 7200 RPM WD drives. 2 x RE2, 2 WD Black's and 1 x WD Blue. I don't have any noticeable harmonics from the drives. My case is positioned on my desk, about 16" from my keyboard.

The one thing that I can think of that might be significant is that I have the two cages attached under the optical bays because I have fans in the lower section. Perhaps this makes a difference?

Have you tried putting something behind the cages where they attach to the back of the case? I'm not using anything, but perhaps it could help you if that's where the vibrations are generating noise.

Can you post a link to some of the threads of people who are also experiencing that problem, I'm curious what the common denominator might be?
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Old 03-02-2014, 05:28 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deees View Post
My guess is that is for System Builder, (who'll be shipping whole systems), to allow them to lock the populated sleds into the cages for security.
That.. actually makes a whole lot of sense. I hadn't considered that, thank you!


Quote:
Originally Posted by deees View Post
The one thing that I can think of that might be significant is that I have the two cages attached under the optical bays because I have fans in the lower section. Perhaps this makes a difference?
I actually do have the cage mounted in the front, under the optical bay. Just the single cage, really, as I've only got the two drives. (Just like in the picture posted.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by deees View Post
Have you tried putting something behind the cages where they attach to the back of the case? I'm not using anything, but perhaps it could help you if that's where the vibrations are generating noise.
As far as I've been able to ascertain the back end of the drive cage is not the cause of the noise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deees View Post
Can you post a link to some of the threads of people who are also experiencing that problem, I'm curious what the common denominator might be?
While the following links are not from the Corsair forums, nor are they related to the 900D, they are users asking questions about the beat frequency phenomenon using two drives. (I haven't been able to find much at all about hard drive vibrations with the 900D. I'm beginning to think I just have an unlucky combination of parts!)
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/...equency-drives
http://www.quietpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=954
http://silentpcreview.com/forums/vie...hp?f=7&t=27226
http://www.pcreview.co.uk/forums/hd-...-t2050912.html


It appears to be a bit hit and miss both in terms of actually experiencing the problem, and being able to resolve it. I can't help but wonder if the number of drive you're (deees) running cancels it all out.

I have managed to change the type of noise produced. By using a non-hotswap cage and removing any rubber padding I had placed in between the sleds and the drives themselves, I'm left with a more "buzzing" vibration sound, rather than a loud "hum". It's not quite as irritating, but I'm going to keep trying to get this quiet.

Something that I admit I find a bit fascinating, is something I discovered yesterday evening. Namely, that the vibration of the drive cage oscillates back and forth between the front of the cage (where the locking doors are), and the back (where it attaches to the motherboard tray and front panel thing). Any vibrational noise is audible only when the front of the cage is vibrating. This is also when the vibrations throughout the entire case (and my floor) are most intense. (I initially thought this meant that the locking doors where loose and vibrating, but even removing them from the sled completely did not help noise any.) The oscillation has a period of about 4-5 seconds.

I may just turn to using bungee cords to suspend the drives in mid-air, if nothing else works. Though I am slightly worried about that, as I've heard that doing so shortens the lifespan of the drive considerably since the drive then experiences the full force of its vibrations, rather than being held in place by a proper drive mount. I haven't been able to find any definite proof of that, just a single forum post where someone said they saw tests done regarding it.
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Old 03-01-2014, 09:07 PM
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I would say that is to lock your sleds down if you are insane enough to plan to move your rig for LAN parties or something. . The fan mounts are the bumps over and blow the two slits.
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  #10  
Old 03-02-2014, 07:32 AM
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What about isolating the entire cage itself where the back bolts to the case?

I think I would be afraid of suspending it. Someone walk across the floor very hard making enough vibration, and the head could skip and ruin the drive.
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Old 03-02-2014, 11:40 AM
Northwoods Northwoods is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwisatzhaderach View Post
What about isolating the entire cage itself where the back bolts to the case?
Well, I can say this much at least. Detaching the drive cage in it's entirety (tested by holding it in my hand while my system was on) does result in the vibrations in the rest of the case and my floor disappearing.

However a large amount of noise persists, and the cage itself when alone vibrates like an electric toothbrush (which I suppose is normal, drives do that after all).


I have another case with two drives in it, which acts as a home server. (One 7200 RPM and one "IntelliPower" (~5400 RPM) drive.) It uses a different screwless design. The rails themselves can either be popped on using pins or screwed on, and the drives then slide into a cage which is *not* modular/removable. I have no problems with vibrations from that case. (I had a previous case with the same type of drive system.) In comparison, my 900D might as well be a seismic test chamber.


Though now as I'm typing that, I realize that maybe, just maybe, I have a wonky drive that functions normally, but is unbalanced, or something, that makes it vibrate unusually much. Does that happen? I don't know.


At this point I've decided to go ahead with suspending the drives in the cage with non-rubber elastic bands or bungee cord. Nothing I've done has successfully reduced vibrations or noise caused by the drives' vibrations, and the only way I see to really isolate them from the rest in an effective manner is to suspend them.

And update! Everything's now set up, and my hard drives are no longer causing any vibration problems. I've attached a picture for those interested.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_0743.jpg (154.4 KB, 797 views)

Last edited by Northwoods; 03-03-2014 at 09:56 AM. Reason: Updated progress
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Old 01-28-2017, 01:29 AM
kyle0782000 kyle0782000 is offline
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Hello,

I have exactly the same problem. For comparison, my two 7200RPM drives were installed for years in a CoolerMaster Stacker STC-T01 without problems. The architecture was different : HDD sleds orientated along the longitudinal direction of the case, large space for thick rubber grummets of CoolerMaster cages.
In my expensive 900D, I hoped having top ultimate solutions, I am disappointed in front of this feature, in addition of other defects (front USB door slighlty deformed in the neighborhood of its hinges, assembly of the large side doors needing clearances adjusted by myself with several layers of thick tapes,...)

I will try solutions and will do posts in the future..
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Old 01-30-2017, 08:11 AM
snapper69 snapper69 is offline
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I have all 3 cages fitted to my 900D with a total of 9 HDD's, both 5400 and 7200 rpm. I did have a bit of a vibration with one of the cages, but I cured that with a couple of rubber washers where it screws to the case at the back.
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