The Best $90 Spent For My Home-Made Server Room
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 23 November 2015 at 08:02 PM EST. 7 Comments
Earlier today I wrote about how reusing the heat from the 60+ system Linux benchmarking server room can heat a home in the winter. The free heat is nice, but it came with a bit of noise; however, thanks to purchasing one product for less than $100 USD the noise level has been significantly reduced.

At the end of this morning's article I wrote about how I had ordered a duct silencer for trying to reduce the noise level generated by having a 530 CFM fan that's pushing the warm server air into the rest of the house. That Tjernlund 530 CFM fan is noisy at full speed, but has been doing the job well during these winter months to keep the server room cool and the rest of the house warm.

With a rheostat to control the fan speed still leaving my office area rather loud, I decided to "splurge" and order a duct silencer (a.k.a. duct muffler) and I'm glad I did. I just received it today and installed it a few hours ago, but it's already clear that it makes an incredible difference.

I originally ordered the VenTech VT FS-6 muffler, but it ended up being out of stop. So rather than being able to buy a duct muffler for $58, I bought the Phresh 6-Inch Duct Silencer for $90 USD as it was in stock from my favorite retailer, Amazon.

I wasn't too familiar with duct silencers/mufflers up until now, and originally intended to just write about it on a weekend when the benchmarking/news material is rather light, but I'm so stunned by this product that I decided to write about it right away. The Phresh 6-inch duct silencer has dramatically reduced the noise of this 530 CFM ventilation fan so much that the noise is little more than that of what's generated by a forced-air heating/cooling vent. In fact, it's quieter than my furnace when it hits the second stage. It's certainly more than twice as quiet as before and much tolerable. Beyond that, I'm able to force the rheostat back up to full speed for the fan so it's pushing at the full 530 CFM while the noise level isn't bad at all!

My only bit of concern is cleaning this muffler with the padded material inside. I could add a carbon filter to the intake, but that would decrease the efficiency of the fan... Time will tell. Nevertheless, I'm extremely happy with the difference this duct silencer has made. With my desk being directly in front of the exhaust for this ventilation fan from the server room, sanity has been restored while being able to benefit from the free heat for the rest of the house.

If you have any ducts to be silenced, check out the Phresh silencers at
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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