Nofan A-43 Review

Nofan, previously known as Nofen, was founded in August 2010 and their product range mainly includes PSU’s, coolers and cases, with their main characteristic being that they are fanless, thus being silent. Today we are looking at their Nofan A-43 set, which includes the case, a fanless PSU and a fanless CPU cooler, let’s take a look at their specs and features:

 

NOFAN CASE : CS-60

Size: 180 x 410 x 425
Weight: 4.2kg
Mainboard compatibility: Micro ATX
VGA compatibility: Second PCI-E
Expansion slot: 5
USB 3.0 (Front): 1EA
HDD bay(optional): 3EA

NOFAN COOLER : CR-100A

Size: 222 x132
Weight: 783g
Thermal resist: 0.48 ?E/W
Case compatibility: CS-30

NOFAN POWER : P-400A

Size: 180 x 410 x 425
Weight: 4.2kg
Mainboard compatibility: Micro ATX
VGA compatibility: Second PCI-E
Expansion slot: 5
HDD bay(optional): 3EA

All these units aim to build a completely silent PC system under the Nofan-A43 set, as they do not utilize cooling fans.

 

A Closer Look – The Package

 

 

The Nofan A-43 set comes in a nice black and blue medium-sized cardbox. At the front side there is an illustration of the whole set, as well as smaller pictures of the three components. At the back side we will find the features of the bundle, while at the side of the box there is a specification table for each component.

All the package contents are  effectively protected using foam material, to prevent damage during the shipment of the Nofan A-43.

 

A Closer Look – Accessories

 

 

The package of the Nofan A-43 includes pretty much everything you will need to set-up your system. So, looking at the pictures from the left to the right side, we will find cable clips, screws,  HDD assebling tools and an HDD fixing bolt, as well as other accessories like M/B fixing bolt, SSD bay fixing bolt and some spare parts. Furthermore, inside the package we also find a CPU fixing bolt, as well as a container of thermal grease. Of course, a CPU backplate is also included. 

The included manual is easy to understand, the detailed instructions along with the printed schematics help the user setup his system trouble-free.

 

A Closer Look – The Cooler in the Nofan-A43 set

 

 

The Nofan CR-100A comes in a simple cardbox. At the back side we can find the specifications of the cooler.

The cooler has a solid build quality and you can tell that by the moment you hold it in your hand. Due to its fanless design, it is easy to maintain and despite its large size, it can easily be installed onto many types of motherboard without interference with other components. It certainly looks great, mostly due to its nickel finish. The base is mirror-polished, and has a logo encraved.

The CR-100A can continuously and silently cool any processor with a TDP specification of under 100 watts, which includes the majority of processors on the market today – even high performance ones. There are totally 4  6 mm copper nickel-plated heatpipes. They seem massive enough to effectively keep the system cool, with the fins being made of 2 mm aluminum wire.

 

A Closer Look – The PSU in the Nofan A-43

 

 

The Nofan A-43 set utilises the P-400A PSU, which has a wattage of 400W and is 80Plus Bronze certified. Of course, as the whole set, this is also fanless. It has a neat black aluminium finish and its body is mostly grilled, so that hot air can be driven out of the body. At the top side we find the input and output table, while at the back side there is an On-Off switch. Another thing to add is that the unit is not modular.

The unit inside is an FSP Zen 400W and has great efficiency and stability as we see from the diagrams, with the testing found on Ecos, who are responsible for the 80Plus certification resources. It is obvious that the PSU had an efficiency of more than 80% in all output power ranges.

 

A Closer Look – The Case Exterior

 

 

The CS-60 is well built and comes in a nice black finish. The entire front is filled with drive bays. At the second picture we can see a general view of the back side of the case. There is also space for installing a 120mm fan if the user needs it.

At the front panel, we find:

2 x USB 2.0 ports
1 x USB 3.0 port
1 x Mic-In port
1 x Audio out port

Nofan has chosen to make the power button really big, so that you can easily find it without having to actively look for it.

Looking at the side of the case, we can notice the metal mesh cover that helps in ventilation. There are also spots to mount fans, if you want to achieve lower system temperatures. If we flip the case over, we can see the anti-vibration bases used to keep the chassis stable. The chassis also has holes in case the user wants to liquid cool his system.

Special attention has been given to the case’s ventilation. There are mesh grills almost everywhere to help hot air exhaustion. The front bays utilise a mechanism so that they are easy to open. The PSU is placed at the bottom, where we also find the down side grilled.

Being fanless, the set has to be capable of having a good airflow, so Nofan has paid attention to small details that help in reducing temperatures. At the front side there is a small opening to drive the hot air out of the case, with the PCI brackets having ventilation holes. However, if the user needs, he can install an additional 140mm fan at the top side, where there is an empty mounting space.

 

A Closer Look – The Case Interior

 

 

The first impression of the interior is “simple”. Nofan has avoided any things like thermal compartments or out of the ordinary layouts. However, the interior comes in an awesome black coating which sure adds up to design. Installing or removing HDD’s is a piece of cake, you just have to lock or unlock the locking knob after placing the drive in the bay. There is an opening in the motherboard tray for easy CPU cooler installation.

Adding expansion cards to the PCI slots is very easy thanks to the tool-less locking mechanism, no screws are needed. All you have to do is to mount the card onto the motherboard, and after lock the bracket with the locking pads.

Throughout the chassis, we can find various holes and openings that greatly help in cable management. This way, the user can keep the system tidy inside and avoid the cable mess. At the pictures we can see the drive bays used to mount optical and floppy drives. These also utilize the same knob mechanism as the hard disks, mounting them is a piece of cake.

 

Installation

 

At the above picture we can see the whole steps that need to be taken in order to complete installation, according to Nofan’s website. It shows that the heatsink must be installed with the heatpipes alligned horizontally. Afterwards, the heatsink is tightened using its supplied backplate firmly to the processor, thanks to the spring mechanism.

 

 
 

This is how our system looked like when we finished installation with the Nofan A-43. The heatsink looks MASSIVE and covers the most part of the interior. Generally, the case feels small and crowded, forget about any tall components within 115 mm distance from the processor heat-spreader, we even doubt if memory modules with large heatspreaders would fit in there. However, the size of the heatsink is totally understandable considering it is fanless.

Test Setup and Procedures

The machine which we mounted into the set was:

CPU:
 Intel i5-2500 “Sandy Bridge” Sockel 1155
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H67MA-D2H-B3
VGA: Onboard
RAM:
 2 x 4GB Corsair XMS3  DDR3-1600
HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6402AAEX 640GB 
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64Bit

All our tests took place at a room temperature of 24.1 degrees.
The load test was performed with Prime95.
The temperatures were read with Core Temp and measured with an infrared sensor.

 

Test Results

 

The temperature results were impressive, the massive heatsink along with the  case’s proper ventilation design seem to do the job pretty well. Of course, we would in no way recommend the set to overclockers or power users who want maximum performance for their PC, as the set’s main target is to remain silent while being able to keep the temperatures down to logical levels.

We would advise to install additional fans, to achieve lower temperatures, as there are mounting spots inside the case, but of course this would result in the system being a little bit more noisy.

 

Verdict

Overall, we were very satisfied with the Nofan A-43 set, as it does the job it promises. Every silence enthusiast looking to build a new system should definitely consider this set. No fan, no noise, no dust. We have to admit that it is hard to find such a set in the market, fact that shows that it targets a specific group of users wanting to build a home media center PC. Users wanting to install a more powerful CPU or a big-sized VGA card, will consider it useless. The same applies to overclockers, this set is certainly not the first choice if you are looking to squeeze performance out of your PC.

Of course, we do not need to say that the set was completely silent during operation, we could barely hear it. The temperature tests showed that despite being fanless, the Nofan A-43 set managed to keep temperatures at logical levels, although it is obvious that we cannot compare it to other products due to its design philosophy.

The price of the Nofan A-43 has not been announced yet, so we are not able to determine whether it is a good deal or not.


However, we can surely award the Nofan A-43 our Innovation Award, as it has a not so common design pattern , and it performs good as well.

 

 

 

 

 

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