Just go fanless

"Love the NUC but hate the noise. I have an 8th gen nuc (NUC8i3BEH) with a core i3-8109u. It's an amazing, petite little machine that does everything I ask of it as my main coding pc.... but oh my goodness, the noise of the fan drove me insane after three months.

After tweaking the sound profiles in the BIOS, it was definitely better at low cpu/idle but when running what I think are moderate compute jobs, it was just still too loud. Worse, the fan had a crunchiness to the sound that made it especially unappealing. So... I decided to open it up and see if I could do anything to reduce the fan noise. 

Well... I've basically gone caseless! The noise at 100% cpu and fan is much smoother and less loud than when the assembly was in the case, and the bizarre crunchiness is gone. At low to medium usage, the machine runs at ~45-50 degrees and is virtually silent unless I put my ear to it. At full burn, its averaging 75 degrees with ambient around 22 degrees. In between, it feels with more air to breathe, the BIOS settings are properly modulating the fan speed without having the machine go from zero to full for moderate tasks. I'm quite happy now. Next step is to replace the fan and heatsink assembly and find another enclosure of similar size that lets the machine breathe more easily."

Source: reddit

Image credit: The NUC blog