How loud is an unenclosed Pro?

My machine is being delivered tomorrow so I am SUPER excited to get started!

I see that there is a pretty high concentration of people who have built enclosures for their machines for what I assume to be sound suppression and for dust containment. How loud is the machine by itself without an enclosure?

I was watching a video where someone upgraded their controller to a Duet3 with the better stepper drivers and it really quiets down the machine a good bit. I think read somewhere that the Pro has a better controller or at least a newer one - does it reduced the motor noise (obviously nothing other than an enclosure is going to make the spindle any quieter).

My machine is going in my wood shop in my basement so it’s not the worst thing in the world if it’s pretty loud and since I’ll be running it after work and on the weekends primarily I can schedule times when it won’t disrupt my work or my wife’s work.



The stepper/mechanical parts is quiet compared to:

  • the router spinning at max RPM
  • the endmill going through material
  • the shopvac you will be using
    Those three things are good reasons to build an enclosure. It’s a matter of personal comfort/preference. But think about the scenario where the machine will be running for hours when you make up your mind :slight_smile:

In addition to @Julien salient points, don’t forget that magnitude of noise is only one factor - the quality of the sounds of the router and various cutting noises are usually pretty high frequency. For me that is a pretty grating, and I don’t want the sound translating through other parts of my house. Also in a basement shop, and found the sound isolation between floors is not great. I’ve doubled up on FR drywall and used Roxul in the ceiling for better separation. Between that an the enclosure I can watch from up close without hearing protection or worry.

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I dont have a Pro but a Shapeoko 3 XXL. I do not have an enclosure and the noise is not bad. If you like in a neighborhood where neighbors might be disturbed an enclosure would be appropriate. As far as dust containment I do not have any issues with dust getting away from my dust collection. I have a Jet DC1100 so I am not using a shop vac. My collection is 4 inches until about 3 feet from the Shapeoko and then it goes down to 2.5 inches. So good dust collection is important but not a reason for an enclosure unless your shop is a white room and needs to be kept that way.

If noise is an issue then you might want to make an enclosure. Dust extraction would not seem to be a good reason for an enclosure if you have adequate dust extraction in the first place. Just remember that when it gets hot in the summer you have created an oven for your Shapeoko to sit in. This time of year in the US it is cool/cold.

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