IAN PHILLIPS

Specialist Engineering Services

Ultimate Audio Computer
A client of a specialist HiFi company were contacted by fastidious audiophile in Norway who wanted his music to be the only thing audible, so for him hard disks, cooling fans and CD drives were just not acceptable as although very quiet they were not totally silent. Fanless PCs are available but he wanted a very small system with the lowest power consumption, so even these were not suitable. In conjunction with the HiFi company built a special version of a Mac Mini computer by removing its cooling fan and making a solid copper passive heatsink that transferred the heat from the heat producing components to the Mac Mini’s unibody aluminium housing. The hard disk was replaced by a solid state drive and the (electrically) noisy switch mode PSU was removed and a new connector fitted to allow the use of a high quality external linear power supply. Music files are transferred from CD’s and then stored on the SSD in advance of listening sessions. The SSD dramatically improves the performance of the computer and that, in conjunction with a high specification A:D converter gave the owner results better than even he expected.

Right: New Copper Heatsinks fitted to Modified MAC Mini Computer
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