CCD MI-6: Performance in less than 7L

Discussion in 'Small Form Factor Systems' started by Firewolfy, Nov 23, 2015.

  1. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    MI-6 First Edition

    First batch completed and shipped. Second batch in planning stages.


    More information and ordering at the website HERE
    (www.casebycasedesign.com)



    dsQVPdYl.jpg

    WwL3Hgb.jpg
    Mi-6 Build with Custom Red Top

    hesTs78h.jpg
    MI-6 Case shown with full tower case for size comparison

    uyDeNuBh.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 26, 2018
  2. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    MI-6 mini-ITX Case Information

    The goal for the MI-6 has been to create a small volume, small footprint case that is meant for gaming or computing.
    I put together some renders and listed some of the features and flexibility it offers.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Optional Front Power Button and I/O:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Features

    • Solid, clean styling. No plastic or flimsy sheet metal, just beautiful black powder coated 2mm interior and black anodized 1.5mm cover.
    • Dimensions 135 x 203 x 246mm. Small footprint keeps desk uncluttered. Volume 6.7 L.
    • COMPARISON TOOL: Rohan Pinto has a great google sheet comparing features and dimensions of 90 SFF cases including the MI-6 here
    [​IMG]
    • Corrosion resistant, lightweight construction. Aluminum alloy chassis and cover.
    • Weight <3.0 lbs.
    • Open physical architecture simplifies working in the case. No PSU covering the MB.
    • Only 4 screws attach the main cover.
    • Built for mini-ITX size motherboards. Socket 1151, 1150, 2011-v3, AMD.
    • Built for mini-ITX size GPUs. All ITX-style GPUs fit.
    • INCLUDED PCI-E 16x Gen 3 Li-Heat shielded narrow-format riser cable.
    • Cutout behind MB for access to backplane.
    • Access M.2 connector and CPU cooler bracket without removing MB.
    • Rear mounted power switch. Minimizes clutter and accidental resets.
    • Optional front panel-mounted power switch (blue LED) and I/O.


    Flexibility
    • Fresh air intakes for the CPU, GPU and PSU.
    • Room for 92mm bottom case fan to increase component cooling.
    • Cover vent sized to match all current MB CPU cooler locations and sizes up to 120x120mm.
    • Cover vent pattern sized to match up to all current gpu fan locations.
    • Fits CPU coolers up to 65mm tall.
    [​IMG]
    • Flexibility to use any SFX, SFX-L or SFX-L+ PSU.
    • SSD/HDD: Multiple locations for 2.5" drives. Also available: a tool-less quick-disconnect stainless steel 2.5” SSD/HDD mount.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    • Mix and Match Mounting:
    Up to 4 SSD/HDDs (or 3 at 15 mm) with additional HDD mounts
    92mm case fan -- FAN SELECTION/COMPARISON TOOL HERE (thx to Matt Reissmann)
    SFX-L PSU
    Front I/O port.
    • Accepts full-height, 1 or 2-slot ITX-sized GPU. Max width 40mm or 43mm with backplate, max length 190mm.
    Clearance for PEG connectors on top.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    • Higher-end GPUs that will fit:
      • Gigabyte GTX 1080 ITX !
      • GTX 1070: Gigabyte GTX 1070 ITX, Palit Galax/KFA2 GTX 1070 Mini ITX
      • GTX 1060: EVGA GTX 1060 ITX, ZotacGTX 1060 ITX
      • All R9 Nanos
      • GeForce GTX 970's: Asus GTX970-DCMOC-4GD5, Gigabyte GV-N970IXOC-4GD
      • GeForce GTX 960's:
    Asus GTX960-MOC-2GD5, EVGA 02G-P4-2962-KR, EVGA 04G-P4-1962-KR,
    EVGA 04G-P4-3962-KR, Gigabyte GV-N960IXOC-2GD, Gigabyte GV-N960IXOC-4GD,
    Gigabyte GV-N960OC-2GD (rev. 1.0), Gigabyte GV-N960OC-4GD​
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2018
    Dedaciai and (deleted member) like this.
  3. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    (Original thread starter post moved here)
    After reading so much about the great cases being designed by the community (A4, M1, L3, etc), I came up with a case derivative idea.

    It is a bit of a niche idea: a case just big enough for the recent mini-ITX-sized high-end GPUs. Since there are now 5 mfgrs (Gigabyte, XFX, ASUS, EVGA, Sapphire) offering m-ITX models covering GTX960, 970, R9-380, Nano and R9-285, it might make some sense. It uses the fantastic layout of the opposed GPU/CPU in Dondan's A4 as the starting point, with the separated GPU and the direct cooling.

    My thought was the new GPUs (largest about 7.2") could yield a pretty small case footprint. The rough size is about 5.2" wide x 9.5" tall x 8.2 deep, which means 2 can fit side by side on 1 sheet of paper, which sounds pretty sweet.

    I put the PSU on the bottom to reduce the depth. I picked the SFX PSU which drives the 5"+ wide case requirement (it's not going to win any HTPC low profile contests, lol). I started with Flex and TFX, but as we all know the fan size is so small which drives the noise level so high, I couldn't stand the idea.

    I want to design a case that is so small it can sit on the desk without getting in the way, have enough power for gaming, and LAN parties or whatever, be able to hold 3 HDDs (2.5") and be simple to manufacture, and not look too horrible. It's around 6 liters, thus the name MI-6. I'm still kicking around the idea, and it is a bit "nichey" but would appreciate feedback.

    Thanks.



    Here is a render of one side of the case.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2016
  4. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Looks like that worked, so here is the other side..
    [​IMG]

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2015
  5. SaperPL

    SaperPL [H]ard|Gawd

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    There's an edit button, you know? Also use something like imgur for hosting images or grab direct image url from dropbox to link it.

    Getting back to your idea: If you put the psu this way you end up with something that's not so efficient. You could just go without the riser and put psu over the motherboard and make it a nice small cube.
     
  6. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Yeah, I see the edit button now. I'll get the hang of it I'm sure. I can still learn new tricks.
    I got the links in there, but now wondering how to show images instead of links.

    I'm having the PSU pull the air from the bottom of the case, not the inside, if that's what you are talking about. Do you think that would still be less efficient? Gonna need to add some case feet for air flow...
     
  7. andgo

    andgo [H]Lite

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    Would this be any smaller than the Osmi case?
     
  8. Aircoookie

    Aircoookie Limp Gawd

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    It's about 6L, so yeah, a bit smaller :)
     
  9. Toepunch

    Toepunch Limp Gawd

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    Links do not work
     
  10. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Added links to Google photo server as well as the drop box linked already. Hopefully the links work. If not, I'll open an incur acct and use that.
     
  11. Aibohphobia

    Aibohphobia [H]ard|Gawd

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    If you change the www.dropbox to dl.dropbox when embedding the images they will display. But it'd be much easier to just use imgur.
     
  12. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    The basic layout is nice, but couldn't you go even shorter? The 2.5" HDDs at the front could be turned sideways to fit below the Mainboard, in front of the PSU. Internal length could be 180mm.
     
  13. xyexz

    xyexz Limp Gawd

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    Looks like the button on the front is about ready to hit the ram, I'd guess that's why it's not shorter. I'd also vote for a button in the back instead, clean front ftw.
     
  14. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    There are loads of different buttons, you don't have to use the vandal switches. It could also be placed on the top panel, on the front at the bottom or at the front at the left side where the GPU resides. There's space for the PEG connectors there anyway, maybe the switch would fit next to them.
     
  15. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    I am working on some tweaks, such as putting the power button down with the USB and audio to simplify cable routing. I had wanted to keep the button isolated to prevent accidental pressing when messing with USB or headphones, but it would be nice to minimize cable clutter. I found a corsair combo front panel board that has all three. I'll see if I can put it in there.

    Nice idea on the HDD location. I am a bit afraid of the PSU cable spaghetti, so I was keeping a plenum area in front of the PSU. On the GPU side, I was thinking to keep about an inch of clearance in front just for airflow, since some blowers vent out the front as well... Hmmm
     
  16. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    I could move the HDD bracket up and out of the way of the PSU cables. I think most itx MBs have connectors coming up from the board. I have seen a few on matx where the sata conns come out the edge though.
     
  17. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    Combo panels are a nice solution if you have the space for it. Cheap and simple.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the cables of the PSU, you've got yourself a nice big area down there to tuck excess in, even with HDDs installed.

    Good thinking, but you've already got that vent design on the front, why not just use that for exhaust from the GPU?

    There are two mITX boards that have SATA connectors on the edge as well, but with angled connectors, 10mm of clearance will be enough with your design, and you need that for the ATX24pin locking tab anyway.
     
  18. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Thanks, I appreciate that.
     
  19. s0214040

    s0214040 n00bie

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    Thinking about the cable management, the 4pin cable for cpu will a little bit long if it is surround the case or just simply across the mb at the front / back of the motherboard , if the display card have a 6/8pin plug, there are no way to get in from the top of the case, how about turning the mb and display card 180 degrees or just put the power supporter at the top of it?
     
  20. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    LOL, looking at my renders some more, it looks like I managed to inadvertently simulate rust along the bottom of the case. Wow, gotta get some rustoleum.
     
  21. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    iFreilicht--
    In trying to put the HDD sideways in front of the MB, the 2.5" drives are 2.75 wide which is more than the PSU ht of 2.5. I am allowing about .100 between the PSU and MB, but that only gets to 2.60, so the MB is in the way of the HDDs, unless I make the case a bit taller.

    I was looking at the isolated HDD screws (w grommets) like Lian Li does. It would be nice to include those for noise reduction, some amount of shock protection and tool less installation. They need some space though, so the 2.75 might go to 3+. The only place for that kind of space is the front inside face right now.
     
  22. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Some good things to think about. I was planning to run the PEG cable straight up from the PSU, at the front of the case on the GPU side of the case, to the top. that should be less than 12", then turn toward the back to the GPU conn within about 2 inches more.

    I guess I assume the cables are typically long enough. I know the PCs I have around here, which are mostly ATX, are way too long. My concern is mostly that there will be excess cables all over that will have to be managed. I don't know much about the short cable kits (modular) from Silverstone and such to try to address the issue.

    Does anyone have one of the short cable kits?
     
  23. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    The longest those cables will have to be is about 30cm. Which SFX PSU has cables shorter than that?
    Still, turning the board and GPU assembly around will yield benefits with cable routing, especially for the GPU. Its cables could get ~5cm short, which would be quite awesome. Additionally, you gain 2cm of maximum GPU width because the PEG connectors can intrude into the PSU cable area.
    And on top of that, you'd also gain space above the GPU where the riser is, which you could use for I/O. I'd say two stacked USB ports should easily fit there.

    Hm, what about putting them on the bottom? You do have to make it taller, but you can also make it shorter. I don't know which option is better in terms of volume, but I'm all for a small footprint, so I personally think it's worth it.
    Aren't there other options of shock-absorbing mounting?
    Oh and additionally, you could also mount the HDDs at an angle to fit them beneath the motherboard.Don't know whether that would be a good idea in terms of longevity, though.
     
  24. Mackan

    Mackan Limp Gawd

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    I mentioned this design (A4-inspired) in a few threads, nice to see someone catching on! :) In my own concept design in Sketchup I added two 120mm fans in the front, for good airflow. Good for a M.2 on the back as well.

    Would also be nice if you could consider noise isolation on this design. If you go for front fans, consider using a smaller version of the Define S front, to shield some noise.

    I believe this design is natural enough to be worthy to explore. And I think Nvidia will produce short and powerful Pascal card next year. Happy to see a thread going!
     
    {NG}Fidel likes this.
  25. andgo

    andgo [H]Lite

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    Is a fan in the front really needed if both the cpu/gpu fans are facing the sides? Would look cleaner without, like the A4.
     
  26. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    In theory it could help the temps of M.2 SSDs, but apart from that, not really. The ratio of internal volume and air volume replaced per minute should be higher than in regular tower cases already, no point in adding more fans.

    If anything, you would configure the front fans as exhaust to get rid of the heat faster.
    This is just speculation, though, someone would have to try it out.
     
  27. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Mackan-- man, I was figuring others must be thinking about this minimal too! I'm not familiar with the Pascal yet, but you think there are even more itx GPUs coming down the pike? That would be great. With the 5 mfgrs already doing mid to high end, that would be a great indicator of the direction of the industry.
     
  28. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    I remember the upside down GPU idea and discussion on A4. I had dismissed it out of hand based on those posts. You know, the possibility of having less effective hot air exhausting, needing to add support to the GPU to keep it secure in the pcie connector, upside down text, etc.
    None of those are showstoppers, and with the potential advantages, I'll have to exercise the grey cells on that.
     
  29. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    The CPU and GPU fans are enough for the cpu and gpu, but there is the problem that all the air in the case is hot exhaust air running across all the case internals. At steady state when gaming, video editing or cad work the m2, ssd, HDD could all be getting heated by 60 or 70c air. I read that HDDs can handle 50 or 60c, so a fan might need to be considered.

    It probably.wouldn't have to be much, just need to dilute to internal air with rt air.

    Edit--- The exhaust air in the case can't be any hotter than the indicated CPU and GPU temps, so the temps should be only in the 40-50s.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2015
  30. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Hmm, if both GPU and CPU fans were reversed then the case internals would only see rt air. Don't know if I want to tell people to disassemble their nano and reverse the fan tho
     
  31. gymfan

    gymfan n00bie

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    Fire, you're the man for making this case, I always lurk but im so impressed with your case and A4 that I had to join. Any estimated date you would be selling it?
     
  32. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Thanks for the kind words bro. Sorry man, I'm just starting the concept evaluation phase now. I have some workhorse hardware for fit studies, and I'm trying to determine if this is a good idea or full of pitfalls.
     
  33. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    I was trying to put 3 2.5" HDD/SDDs in, but I'm having a hard time fitting more than 2, with the space needed for cabling and toolless install.

    I need your thoughts.

    I started a poll to get everyone's opinion. Here is the link>>>>>>>>>>>>>>: http://strawpoll.me/6108250

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2015
  34. silent-circuit

    silent-circuit [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I don't think you need more than 2 in most cases, as long as you have space for at least one other 2.5" drive for a SSD. Couple big spinning drives and a SSD or two is honestly more than I imagine 99% of people buying something this small would even be trying to put in it.
     
  35. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht [H]ard|Gawd

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    Agreed, 2 are enough in close to all cases. Also think about the fact that there are three different heights used with 2.5" drives: 7mm, 9.5mm and 15mm. So maybe your case fits two 15mm drives, but that would mean you could cram four 7mm drives in. Two 9.5mm drives still can correspond to three 7mm drives if you've got a bit of wiggle room.
     
  36. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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  37. pixelblue

    pixelblue [H]Lite

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    If it could be made just a tad longer in the front to allow a vertically mounted slim optical drive, I'd buy one today. Nice work!
     
  38. silent-circuit

    silent-circuit [H]ardForum Junkie

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    How often do you use an optical drive? Just get a USB one and put it in a drawer for the 99.99% of the time you don't.

    Heck, I'm considering a new case mostly because ~1/4 of the thing is completely unpopulated 5.25" bays.
     
  39. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Ok, so the case has about 61mm height for the cpu cooler (the same as the Silverstone SG13 case). There is room to fit a Big Shuriken 2, ID-Cooling IS-60, Thermolab LP53, Thermalright AXP100, Zalmann CNPS8900, Silverstone AR06 or Akasa Nero LX.
    This is my research so far, and I'm sure I'm missing a few at the 58-61 range.

    So I don't think there is much overclocking possible with only 61mm, but for a given CPU a bigger cooler will run at lower speed, right, so quieter? (larger fan, meaning less rpm needed to move the same air volume/sec)
     
  40. Firewolfy

    Firewolfy Gawd

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    Yeah, I was going to put an optical in there, but I thought the same thing. I mean it could maybe fit vertically between the cpu and gpu, and I used to use one in my main computer to watch movies. But now with our phones, tablets and streaming Netflix, it is gathering dust.

    Hmm, I do use an optical for making highlight reel movies from my son's sports, bu tI can just plug in a usb, right?