This post was written by Diane Roman, from the Dell Enterprise Customer Loyalty team with contributions by Chris E. Peterson, Mechanical Senior Acoustical Engineer

Enterprise Customer Loyalty posted a blog in July 2011 on how our acoustical specifications are based on customer survey and jury study feedback. (Your Feedback Drives our Acoustical Specs). The 12th generation of server platforms incorporates acoustical improvements targeted at new environmental expectations.  Direct customer feedback to sounds in addition to feedback gathered by Marketing and Quality Engineers through focus studies, evaluation programs, customer onsite inspections, executive briefings, and various cross-functional customer engagements contributed to the drive for improvements.

Sound Strategy
Customers have been telling us that IT purchase decisions are heavily influenced by business users and usage scenarios. In fact, many servers are being deployed in non-traditional and acoustically challenged settings, so we re-set acoustical strategy for 12th generation of server products. Specifically, we set different acoustical signatures for respective utilization and configurations important in the acoustically sensitive usage environments.  We continue to design for acoustics early in the product development cycle, for sound quality, sound power, and transient noises.

Acoustical Enhancements
The new 12th generation of server products offer quiet acoustics made possible through improved air flow management, reducing fan speed while maintaining thermal requirements.

  • Increased capability in the thermal control algorithm to adapt to new usage cases and also updated mechanical designs to complement the thermal algorithms.  
  • Configuration and utilization based acoustical signatures (frequency and amplitude content) to deliver to customers’ needs in acoustically sensitive environments such as a small office.
  • Minimum and typical configuration half as loud as those of the 11th generation of products, with minimum configurations of some servers quiet enough they could be used in a library.
  • Broader feature-set support including refined thermal control that responds to a combination of fan speeds for lowest acoustical output.


So tell us what you think! Your continued feedback not only helps us to discover areas we need to improve but drives innovations and enables us to deliver solutions that meet your acoustical needs.

Many thanks to Chris E. Peterson, Mechanical Senior Acoustical Engineer, who contributed to this article.


To learn more about improvements made to our 12th generation products vs previous generations, check out Chris’s white paper on Thermal control algorithm,
YouTube video, latest blog Acoustical Approach to 12th generation PowerEdge servers, and 2011 white paper on Dell Enterprise Acoustics