Take off the sound cover and listen to the engine running. Take a long rod or screwdriver and press it up against your ear and against the valve cover in various areas to hear the noises under the cover. If it's louder up front, I'd bet some sort of VANOS noise. The speed of the tick is too fast for a single lifter. They hit once every 2 revolutions, so only about 5-6 times per second at idle (assuming 600-700RPM idle).
Possible belt tensioner? Something else other than a lifter or spun bearing - you'd have no motor left if it were a spun bearing and there would have been lots of metal in the oil you drained previously.
E92 335i/6MT Dinan Stage 3: intercooler, oil cooler, intake, flash, exhaust, LW dual-mass flywheel.
Vishnu PWM methanol custom trunk mount, Diffsonline 3-clutch Salisbury custom diff, Ohlins Road and Track coilovers, Vorshlag camber plates, much more...
E28 M5 w/ buncha stuff, R171 SLK350