DAN A4-SFX: The smallest gaming case in the world

Discussion in 'Small Form Factor Systems' started by dondan, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    the 120mm AIO mount isn't compatible with v2. The new USB cable will be available in the next weeks.
     
  2. jordan condi

    jordan condi n00bie

    Messages:
    5
    Joined:
    May 14, 2018
    So I bought these parts for my PC..

    Ryzen 7 2700X
    Cryorig C7 Cu + inc. TIM
    Asus ROG Strix X470-I Motherboard
    Noctua NF A9x14 92mm 14mm thick fan
    G Skill Trident Z RGB 32GB (16x2) DDR4-3200 SDRAM
    Samsung 970 EVO 500GB m.2 NVMe SSD
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080Ti SuperClocked Black w/ 11GB GDDR5X
    Corsair SF600W 80+ Gold PSU

    There is a fan mount in the bottom. Would it be worth it to buy an additional Noctua 92mm fan or would that be unnecessary?
     
  3. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    In my setup, that fan is important, ramping it up a bit early vs. the CPU fan keeps my M.2 SSD temps under control otherwise it throttles. That said, I have the 14mm noctua that comes with the LH9i which is a faster fan than their standalone one. Not sure if that will make a difference.
     
  4. antioch

    antioch Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    337
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Not compatible without some slight modding, but still useful for those of us who own V1/2 (I have one of each) and don't want to buy a V3?
     
    Nanook likes this.
  5. RagingOcelot

    RagingOcelot n00bie

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2017
    jordan condi

    I would be very curious to know what your temps are with your R7 2700x, I ended up with a Asetek 545LC on mine, today actually (stock paste, soon to be re-pasted). I am hovering around 40C at idle if I keep it quite, sub 40 if I run the pump and fan higher.

    I previously had the Cryorig C7 Cu with stock fan, no 92mm intake fan under the PSU, and I wasn't happy with the cryorig cooler when used with the window kit due to temps, it seemed to work fine with the standard side panels. (outside of sounding like a lawn mower due to air turbulence, you won't have that issue). Could be operator error or a bad paste job on my part.

    Ryzen 7 2700X
    Asetek 545LC w/ AM4 bracket and Noctua NF A9x14 92mm fan
    Asus ROG Strix X470-I Motherboard
    G Skill Trident Z RGB 16GB (8x2) DDR4-3200 CL14 SDRAM
    Samsung 960 PRO 500GB m.2 NVMe SSD
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080Ti FTW 3 w/ 11GB GDDR5X
    Corsair SF600W 80+ Gold PSU

    Had everything but the CPU, RAM, Motherboard and Coolers, from my previous desktop.

    A couple of question I had for the forum,

    1. What screw length should be used with the Asetek 545LC? I vaguely remember it being mentioned about 40 pages ago but wasn't able to find it again.

    2. The EVGA 1080Ti FTW3 might be a bit longer of a GPU than this hardware combo can handle, the backplate of the GPU is pressing pretty hard on one of the Asetek radiator hose fittings, I ended up removing the radiator mounting screws, slid it over to the motherboard side, and it's just sitting at the bottom for now. I am guessing this isn't really solvable with that GPU model, but wanted to ask.

    3. My Asetek cooler is gurgling more than I would expect, like an hour+ after install, does anyone else's do that?
     
  6. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    RagingOcelot:

    1) = On the bottom you can use the anti vibration screws of the hdd bay. On the top for the Noctua fan 4x C6/32 16-17mm length
    2) = I dont see a question
    3) = This is too long. Maybe remove it start it outside the case and try to catch the bubbles in the radiator or get an replacement

    antioch: You need to drill holes perfectly and you need a special counter sunk drill for the holes with lian li special angle. I think I can sell 20 of these brackets to modders that are able to do this but this is not enough - Sorry.

    @ALL: Here are some tips of running the 8700k/8700 inside the A4 without delidding:

    1) Disable Intel Turbo Mode in UEFI: The CPU will "only" clock with 3,7Ghz but is now very easy to cool.
    2) Undervolt the CPU or maybe clock it some Mhz down. If you set the max multiplicator to 42 and set the offset voltage to -0.75 - -0,125V
    you have still a high clock while the CPU generates less heat. The performance lost is low.
    3) If you have the A4-SFX v2 you can use the 92mm Asetek AIO
    4) If you have the A4-SFX v3, a full size GPU and a HDPlex PSU you can use a 120mm AIO. This solution can handle the 8700K also with light OC.
    5) If you have the A4-SFX v3, a ITX size GPU and a SFX PSU you can also use a 120mm AIO. This solution can handle the 8700K also with light OC.
    6) External Water cooling: Works on every A4 version, remove the I/O shield and route the pump of an big 240mm or 360mm AIO through it. Now reinstall the boards. The radiator can be placed behind the case or under the desk. This solution will give you the best thermal results and heatroom for OC.
     
    Alaberti, bAMtan2 and Julio Espinosa like this.
  7. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    FWIW I’m running an 8700 using the LH-N9i but with the NF-A9PWM fan on the cooler and the included 14mm on the bottom of the case under the PSU. I didn’t have to disable turbo or undervolt, but, I did have to fight my BIOS to get it to run everything exactly at spec for it to stand up to stress testing. Seems these ASUS boards want to force overclocking of some kind or another without a deliberate effort to avoid it. It also required adjusting the vdroop compensation settings which by default allowed a massive power spike under load which was accounting for a lot of unexpected heat. So I can understand if someone is failing to keep this CPU cooled with what they think is a baseline setup if using this board (Z370-i)

    With this setup the CPU maxes out at 94C under stress. Never gets anywhere near that under normal use, though.

    Edit: I should mention it’s not Prime95 getting that 94C temp, that comes from Intel’s processor diagnostic tool. In Prime95 torture test, temps plateau around 67C usually, depends on ambient.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018 at 6:13 AM
  8. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    Then you run prime not correct. If you run custom test with 8k in min and max field + Small FFTs in Place you will hit 100°C. Prime is heavier than Intel XTU.

    LL.jpg

    And now wait 15min.

    If you run Prime with your adjust settings what is the Clock that CPU-Z shows?
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018 at 6:59 AM
  9. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    Running it now with settings matching your screenshot. The only difference from before is setting threads to 4 instead of 12. That has the CPU temp at 64C with a few cores bouncing between 72C and 52C, with a few spikes to 75C. The Core Speed in CPU-Z with this setup is sticking right about 3700MHz.

    Although it’s only been 12 minutes, the temperature ranges and averages aren’t changing. I doubt they will in another 3.

    Edit: I should mention, this isn’t maxing out my fans with my current setup. Case fan is at 76% and CPU at 80%. So I suppose the temps could be lower.

    Edit 2: As suspected, the temp ranges and averages stayed the same for the whole duration.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018 at 7:33 AM
  10. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    Sorry I sourced the screenshot from google.
    Ok it looks like you CPU hit the power limit in Prime95 so it clocks down to 3,7 and not stay at 4,3Ghz. Maybe the load in Intel XTU is lower so it can reach 4,3Ghz and become hotter ;)

    From your last post I know you limit your CPU to stay in TDP 65W specs. This will let your CPU clock down in Prime95. It is nearly the same solution if you disable the turbo boos. But working with power limits has the advantage to get a clock between 3,2-4,3 GHz.

    With L9i and 8700 tested by myself:

    Turbo Off = CoreTemp Powerconsumtion say 50W and the CPU temp is 56°C in Prime 95 (clock = 3,2 Ghz)
    Turbo On = CoreTemp Powerconsumtion say 120W and the CPU temp is 100°C in Prime 95 (clock = 4,3 Ghz)
    Power limit (for example 65W) = CoreTemp Powerconsumtion say 65W and the CPU temp is 70°C in Prime 95 (clock = 3,7 Ghz)

    ztjio: Conclusion: Also your CPU will hit 100°C if you allow it to clock with 4,3Ghz but since you are working with power limits the CPU isn't allowed to source more than 65W or what ever value you specify.
    Load != Power consumtion that means if you look in task manager and see 100% load for example in XTU it could be that your CPU has a higher clock as in Prime95 also with 100% on all cores in task manager. 100% load means only all threads are full but not how complicated the task is inside the threads. So a complex task inside a thread will force the CPU to take more power. So it clocks down to be in power limit specs.

    I think this topic is very interesting and I will make a turoial for the How-To section on dan-cases.com
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018 at 8:41 AM
    bAMtan2 and Julio Espinosa like this.
  11. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    Sort of. Here’s my take based on what I know about the architecture: The design spec for turbo boost intel CPUs does not allow more than one core to run at the max turbo boost clock speed. The more cores under load, the lower the max clock. I can definitely get the CPU to heat up beyond what the cooler can handle, and easily hit 100C. All I have to do is flip on Multicore Enhancement (and run 6+ threads) which evades the normal clock/core balancing algorithm of the CPU and allows more cores to hit max (maybe all?) clock simultaneously which obviously draws a lot more power. All I’m doing instead is running the CPU exactly as its capabilities are advertised, which requires changing the default settings of the BIOS even after running the basic tuning wizard. Standard clocks/multipliers, standard core ratios. Clearly, there are multiple ways to get the 65W TDP limit, such as deliberately asking the board to target that metric. I just decided to go for it via default/stock setup.

    Also, load in Task Manager actually doesn’t say 100%. It’s 40%. With 4 cores under load, 3.7GHz is the max clock that will be used under spec behavior, but, it’s still only 4 of 12 threads at a bit more than standard max clock so it ends up coming up as 40% (I watched it.) The Task Manager takes all these things into account. If I run 12 threads, even though the max clock is 3.2ghz, it does reach almost 100% load. It rests at about 96%. So even though the CPU runs hotter in Prime95 at 4 threads, it’s not the max load and not the max performance either.

    At any rate, to get this bog standard behavior I had to not only use all the default, baseline clock settings but also disable Multicore Enhancement and set Load-line Calibration from “Auto” to “Default” on this Z370-i board. So if you document this, those will be important to note. I learned of the Load-line calibration setting from a Toms hardware review of this board, btw. Without that setting, the intel tests still wouldn’t pass even with fans set to max ahead of time. I’m kind of irritated that ASUS made it harder than necessary to get this pure baseline behavior. There’s basically no way out of the box for someone to know to do these things if they really want the CPU to work as designed. You can see the review here https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/asus-rog-strix-z370-i-gaming-motherboard,5381-4.html

    As far as comparing XTU’s temp results, I’m sure it’s recording the highest spike on the hottest core and probably sampling the cores more than my normal temp monitor and that’s why it gets up to 94C. Well that and the fact I ran the test with my normal fan ramp, rather than fans set to max. If I actually watch the current temp while it runs, the warmest test seems to be the “Math” tests which sits around 82C continuously, though, again, pretty sure that’s just the hottest single core and per core behavior will vary across samples. I might just have one core on my chip that’s prone to heating up more than usual. In my normal monitor the temps look similar to the Prim95 tests.

    The most interesting thing I’ve noticed so far is that I have one game that will put up almost the same CPU temp numbers as Prime95: Final Fantasy XV. So I guess it’s not always true that gaming is a low CPU demanding activity. But that said, usually it sits much lower in games.

    Anyway, all in all I’m happy with the case, happy with the performance, happy with the sound in most situations. I could probably tweak things and eek out slightly more max performance but since this is a gaming machine, I’m happier to have my fans running a bit quieter and never worrying about accidentally hitting the throttle point in real usage.
     
  12. RagingOcelot

    RagingOcelot n00bie

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2017
    dondan Thank you for such a prompt response! I will try your suggestion with the cooler.

    I will update with some additional comments later on when I "feel" the Asetek is operating correctly, or has been replaced if necessary, and have time to mess with voltages/clocks for fun (I plan on running stock clocks and let AMD's PB/XFR 2.0 do it's thing in actual use). Which is why I didn't mention any "at 1.4V and 4.2ghz all core overclock it hit xx C in Prime" earlier.

    For anyone following along, I haven't run into any issues using the Cryorig C7 Cu or Asetek cooler with a r7 2700x in day to day use or gaming, stock clocks. I just like my PC's as quite as possible and the Asetek cooler was a way to get there.
     
  13. Tyloo_wNv

    Tyloo_wNv n00bie

    Messages:
    2
    Joined:
    Thursday
    What is your t die temp with 2700x and C7 Cu? I have a C7 Cu with A9x14, and also a A9 at the drive bay and two akasa 80x10mm fan on the top and the bottom of the mobo. Currently my 2700x is on the desk without a case and it goes to 80+ (tdie) sometime during some heavy load games. Hope they can handle the 2700x well with a low temp.
     
  14. xpatriatedtexan

    xpatriatedtexan n00bie

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Thursday
    Good Afternoon All,

    I know this has probably been discussed but I've been reading over the last 359 pages and it seems like most people using Coffee Lake CPUs are using the K versions. I am in the process of building a PC for my wife in the a4-SFX v3 (which arrived a couple of weeks ago) using a non-k version of the i7-8700.

    I have sent the cpu off to silicon lottery to have it delidded and am in the process of purchasing a CPU cooler. It looks like I'm stuck between the Cryorig C7 and the Noctua NH L9-i. The reviews of these two coolers being used in this case all seem to have been done by folks overclocking 'K' versions of CPUs. So I've got a couple of questions I'd appreciate some input/feed back on....First with regards to the CPU Cooler......
    1. Will I have any thermal problems at all under heavy cpu usage if I use the Noctua?
    2. With a delidded i7-8700 (non-K) using stock settings would the Cryorig still experience the air-turbulence issues so many people have discussed?

    Finally, as for the rest of the system, I'm looking at:
    ASUS ROG Strix H370-i - MOBO
    Corsair Vengeance LPX 2666 (2 x 8GB) - RAM
    Crucial MX500 1TB - m.2280 - STORAGE
    EVGA 1080 8GB SC iCX - GPU
    Corsair SF600 - PSU
    Dell S2417DG - MONITOR

    This should be a reasonably quiet and powerful enough system for playing MMORPGs @ 1440p with graphics turned pretty high up right? My wife loves WOW, GW2 etc...Are there any suggestions for changes?

    My apologies if this is in the wrongs spot, but it seemed like the place to ask since this thread is dedicated to this case.
     
  15. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    I have a very similar setup. I can tell you if you are going to *truly* set the CPU up stock you didn’t need to delid it. I have zero problems cooling it with the Noctua and I didn’t delid. In fact, I discussed this with dondan just a few messages back. Though I have the Z370-i, which perhaps has different bios behaviors, I will mention that getting it to run as stock was not straight off obvious. Default settings even after running through the setup wizard setting everything to the low/mundane use settings still has options set that massively increase heat output so you’ll want to make sure multicore enhancement is off and Load-line Calibration, assuming same issues/behavior as the Z370-i, is correctly set as mentioned above. But that said, since you delidded, you might be able to get away with reenabling some of those non stock features I guess.

    But at stock there’s zero issue running the i7-8700. Nor should there be. It’s only a 65W TDP CPU. You could probably just use the included cooler. I cool it with the Noctua LH9-i with the fan swapped out for the A9 which mostly just improves the sound quality. These slim fans have a kind of buzz to them the thicker fans don’t have. I used the included fan for the intake though, on the bottom. I have basically the same GPU, and though my RAM is higher spec I run it at stock speeds for the CPU which is much slower than what either of us have there.

    As far as gaming, one of my games that I play is FFXIV and I have zero issues maintaining a very high framerate. In fact, I usually play with 100% max settings and framerates are always good. Though I run it with the framerate limited to 70fps just because it keeps the room quieter/cooler. I suspect given that the other games you mention have simpler graphics loads, there should be no issues there either.

    With this setup I also have decent framerates in FFXV using its enhanced assets pack and relatively high image quality settings. That’s by far the most demanding game I’ve tried on this system and again, it’s all fine albeit that one does drop under 60fps at times. I could lower the settings of course... but it’s so damn good looking I don’t wanna ;)
     
    xpatriatedtexan likes this.
  16. xpatriatedtexan

    xpatriatedtexan n00bie

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Thursday
    Thanks man....Do you know if the Asus H370-i will allow me to do the same things you've done to force the CPU to stay at 65W? My initial understanding of the H370 spec is that the only thing it doesn't allow is over-clocking....but I don't know if that means purely overclocking or if that means you're aren't allowed to adjust the CPU in any fashion. Haven't really seen any reviews that discuss it yet either. The only review I saw had some guy using an unlocked coffee lake processor trying to overclock it and saying, "No dice"....Which kinda led me to question if you could actually undervolt a cpu with it. That's not technically "over" clocking....

    Think I'll just take your advice and go with the Noctua unless anyone else chimes in about the Cryorig maybe not having to spin fast enough to create the turbulance issue since I'll be using a locked version of the CPU.

    Out of curiosity...do you game at 1080 or 1440p? Also...do you have any pictures of your build? Big question I got is how noticable is that ugly noctua fan sitting at on the CPU cooler? *LOL* Vanity I know....
     
  17. RagingOcelot

    RagingOcelot n00bie

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2017
    I don't have the C7 Cu on the r7 2700x at the moment, just an out of box Asetek, finishing some custom length cables and then I will go back and try it with the other cooler again.

    Disclaimer: Motherboard Side Panel Was Off, PSU sitting just outside case, ambient temp 25.55 C (78 F)

    Pump Curve:

    40C 60%
    60C 70%
    80C 100%

    Fan Curve:

    0C 100%
    100C 100%

    I just ran FF XV with graphics details at max @ 4k and Ryzen Master is reporting a clock speed of 3925-3950 across all cores, 1.325V, with a temp 59.88 - 62 C, power usage anywhere from 30-60W after 15 minutes of gameplay.

    Ran Prime95 with just checking Small FFT's and running 20 minutes and ended up at a clock speed of 3650 across all cores, 1.23125-1.225V with a temp of 85 - 85.13C, power usage of 101.8 - 104.8 W.

    So far I am happy with it, it's been said more than once that 65W CPU's are recommended, and I stuck a 105W CPU in it.

    If you have any game title's in particular your using send me a message and if I own it I might take a look at it to provide some info.

    Edit: One thing I did want to try out soon was disabling the 4 "weak" cores via Ryzen Master and seeing if I can get any kind of TDP headroom to overclock the remaining 4 for gaming use only. Just to see what it will do.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2018 at 4:45 AM
  18. ztjio

    ztjio n00bie

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    I don’t know what settings are available on the H370-I, but, I’d guess if it doesn’t have control over the two things I mentioned then it will not enable those functions at all. Just a guess though.

    I game at 1440p, nothing’s performed poorly enough to push me down so... may as well.

    As for the visibility of the fan, it hasn’t bothered me. In a typical evening/low light gaming scenario I can’t really see it in a meaningful way at all. In bright daylight you can see the light part of the fan frame, but, the dark brown parts are not very visible. I thought it might bother me more than it does, tbh. If I was using a clear side panel I’d run some custom blue/pink cabling and just incorporate the colors. Maybe even consider modding a noctua fan into the SF600 to keep up consistency. I do have a pic of my build posted on page 358 with my keyboard. That’s a fairly badly lit pic so it doesn’t really reflect reality so great. It really brought out the light color more than you see it in real life. This might be a slightly more fair representation though it’s definitely brightly lit making it easier to see.

    MVMPkQ5jS2msUUybl6GZrw.jpg
     
  19. Tyloo_wNv

    Tyloo_wNv n00bie

    Messages:
    2
    Joined:
    Thursday
    Thanks man. That temp seems similar to my Cu C7 +A9x14 without a dan case. I put my build temporarily in a mid tower case with only one case fan near the IO shield. I think in most of the games CPU temps is around 60+ (tdie) and in some heavy loading games may reach 80, but it seems okay.
    I will probably get my A4SFX this weekend or next week. I have a normal thick A9 in my hand, two A4x10 and two Akasa 80x10 fans so I might expect a better performance than what I have right now.
     
  20. RagingOcelot

    RagingOcelot n00bie

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2017
    Yeah, I have been wondering myself if the Asetek with a slim fan vs the C7 Cu are basically the same. I saw that the Asetek is listed as a 150W TDP cooler, but with a slim fan it may be more like a 100-120W TDP cooler which is basically a C7 Cu. Don't know until you try it out though.
     
  21. xpatriatedtexan

    xpatriatedtexan n00bie

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Thursday
    Dude....you win the internets. Love your build but seriously, that cat..."rub my belly"...I've got an orange Tom much the same, he's more a golden retriever than a cat. He steals the show.

    Thanks for your input. Hope to report back once this thing is complete.
     
  22. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    RagingOcelot The Asetek will be more silent while beiing better.
     
  23. dondan

    dondan [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,640
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    Here is a small list of temp values made with an Noctua L9i on an Intel i7 8700 that show what temps you can reach if you play with the maximum power consumtion of your CPU. On my Asrock board the value is called "Long Duration Power Limit" (LDPL). This value give you the chance to setup you4 CPU in that way that it will run in Intel specs and you are able to cool it. All results was made in Prime95 v26.6 (8k Test FFTs in place)

    Auto (125W) = 100+°C /6x 4,3Ghz
    95W = 91°C /6x 3,9-4,0Ghz
    80W = 80°C /6x 3,7-3,8Ghz
    65W = 72°C /6x 3,5-3,6Ghz

    Special Test with LDPL @ 100W and untervolted - 0,1V.

    100W + undervolt = 87°C / 6x 4,1 -4,2Ghz.
     
    ztjio likes this.
  24. Vyker

    Vyker n00bie

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2018
    On a motherboard, with the IO ports on the Right hand side, is it best to have the 24pin power and CPU power cables on the left side or on the bottom side?

    I'm looking to get an AM4 mini-ITX board, and the two brands I've seen have one of the right and one on the bottom. I'm asking for power cable routing purposes, and which would be easier.

    Thanks