Part of the problem seems to be the non-linearity of the dBA scale. it's at least 2x as loud perceived
Subjectivity comes into play.. one man's buzzing is another man's flight of the bumblebee! Or one man's loud is another man's not loud to others. I imagine this card to be better than the blower solution, so it is an improvement there... but almost seems to be driven out of necessity (300W) than a bid to really quiet things down (though does that really matter why?). It's hard to say HOW much louder it is exactly, but it is fair to say most reviews are showing it a few db louder. I also found the FE cards, subjectively, to be not so bad on load... there was enough 'headroom' in my observation of this to get louder and not be annoying. It won't require ear plugs, but we do know it will be louder (however each and every one of us hears it).