NCASE M1: a crowdfunded Mini-ITX case (updates in first post)

Discussion in 'Small Form Factor Systems' started by wahaha360, Sep 15, 2012.

  1. rawrr

    rawrr Gawd

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    The AbleHD was a kickstarter project that brought 15" portable HDMI monitors. They were supposed to be bringing out a successor, however no word has been heard for a very long time.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2015
  2. vipz

    vipz Gawd

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    I ordered the adapter. I'll get the LCD and most likely also a cellular shell so that hopefully I can avoid having to cut into the aluminum.
     
  3. XelNika

    XelNika Limp Gawd

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    So I've spent the past three days trying out different setups.

    Test setup:

    ASUS Maximus VI Impact
    SX600-G
    4770K @ 4 GHz
    I settled for a 4 GHz overclock because I didn't know how the NH-C14 would perform and I wanted the results to be comparable.
    MSI 970 Gaming 4G Twin Frozr
    Since it has a non-reference cooler, it dumps the heat inside the case. This means that it affects CPU temps more than a reference cooler would and benefits from exhaust fans to draw hot air away. I left the fan on auto so the temperature differences are actually smaller than they would've been with a constant fan speed.

    Configurations tested:

    H100i 2x intake
    H100i 2x exhaust
    NH-C14 3x intake
    NH-C14 2x intake (CPU push/pull) + 1 exhaust (front side fan)
    NH-C14 3x exhaust
    NH-C14 2x exhaust (CPU push/pull) + 1 intake (front side fan)

    All fans are 120 mm fans @ 1400-1500 RPM.
    I used the bundled Corsair SP120 fans for the H100i.
    I used 2 Arctic F12 PWM fans for the NH-C14 and one of the SP120's as the 3rd fan.

    Testing method:

    First, I ran 10 mins of Unigine Valley to heat the GPU.
    Then I started a Prime95 26.5 (non-AVX) blend test while still running Unigine Valley. The reason I run Prime95 and Unigine together is that the heat from my GPU raises CPU temperatures a lot so testing CPU and GPU separately isn't representative of real use.
    The reason I ran the GPU test on its own before starting Prime95 is that the increased CPU usage makes GPU usage drop so the maximum GPU temp was reached before Prime95 started.

    Results:

    H100i 2x intake
    http://i.imgur.com/aeX4WtO.png

    H100i 2x exhaust
    http://i.imgur.com/9WGRCIY.png

    NH-C14 3x intake
    http://i.imgur.com/Q7hSAxa.png

    NH-C14 2x intake (CPU push/pull) + 1 exhaust (front side fan)
    http://i.imgur.com/oqOKh9G.png

    NH-C14 3x exhaust
    http://i.imgur.com/TsqtDg0.png

    NH-C14 2x exhaust (CPU push/pull) + 1 intake (front side fan)
    http://i.imgur.com/a3SugJB.png
    Analysis of results:

    For GPU temps, the results are:
    NH-C14 3x exhaust > H100i 2x exhaust > NH-C14 2x intake + 1 exhaust > NH-C14 2x exhaust + 1 intake > NH-C14 3x intake = H100i 2x intake

    For CPU temps, the results are:
    NH-C14 3x intake = H100i 2x intake > NH-C14 2x intake + 1 exhaust > NH-C14 3x exhaust = H100i 2x exhaust > NH-C14 2x exhaust + 1 intake

    Basically, the NH-C14 with 3 fans roughly matches the H100i with 2 when both are moving air in the same direction. The tiny differences in CPU and GPU temps are usually within margin of error.
    However, the NH-C14 3x intake had better MB and HDD temps than the H100i 2x intake. Similarly, the NH-C14 3x exhaust had better MB and HDD temps than the H100i 2x exhaust in addition to having slightly lower GPU temps.
    Last but not least, the NH-C14 has a lower noise floor because the H100i has a pump that always runs at full speed.

    The NH-C14 2x intake + 1 exhaust and NH-C14 2x exhaust + 1 intake configurations were the odd ones out.
    The NH-C14 2x intake + 1 exhaust config managed MB, CPU and GPU temps between the pure intake and exhaust configurations, making it a sort of jack of all trades. The only downside was unusually high HDD temps for some reason.
    The NH-C14 2x exhaust + 1 intake configuration had by far the highest CPU temperature and didn't improve GPU temperatures noticeably. Completely pointless.

    It's worth noting that I didn't try different fan speeds. The coolers might scale differently with higher/lower fan speeds.

    The TIM application and mount might also have made a difference. Perhaps my H100i mount was bad. I certainly didn't go into this expecting the NH-C14 to match the H100i.

    Conclusion:

    Overall there is no reason for me to choose the H100i over the NH-C14. The NH-C14 can provide better GPU temperatures and similar CPU temperatures while having a lower noise floor.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2015
  4. Nobu

    Nobu 2[H]4U

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    Was just thinking, what would happen if you set a barrier between the gpu (with a non-reference cooler), and the vent, with fans blowing in exhaust through that vent? If you only allowed air coming from the top of the gpu's exhaust to exit there and the other fans were set for intake, would the gpu cooler naturally pull in fresh air?
     
  5. Phuncz

    Phuncz 2[H]4U

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    The steel fan-bracket arrived today, after needing to be shipped again. Looks like a decent solution, good job !
     
  6. manny27

    manny27 n00b

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    Nice thorough tests but the pictures are too low res to actually see the numbers.
     
  7. XelNika

    XelNika Limp Gawd

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    You just have to open them on a new tab. I didn't realize this was an issue since I have an extension that does it for me.
     
  8. deadz0ne

    deadz0ne n00b

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    Hey guys,
    I figured I might share my current build inside the M1 as this forum gave me lots of tips and ideas concerning the case.
    My build is not quite complete, it's missing some new storage and cable-management.

    Current specs are:
    Board: ASUS Impact VII
    CPU: Intel i7-4790K
    RAM: 16GB Corsair Dominator Platinum DDR3 1866MHz
    Graphics Card: Palit GeForce GTX 970 (Reference/Short PCB)
    PSU: Silverstone ST45SF-G 450W (With Noiseblocker 80mm fan)
    CPU Cooler: Corsair H105 with SP-120 Silent PWM Fans
    GPU Cooler: Arctic Accelero Twin Turbo 3 (without shroud, nor backplate heatsink)
    SSD: SanDisk 256GB

    The Impact VII was my personal favourite, as I wanted a read and black color scheme and it also offered everything that I needed. In the future I plan on installing an M.2 SSD as the main boot drive.

    The i7 probably was overkill for what I mostly do, which is gaming. But occasionally I do start up After Effects or Photoshop and it really does help quite a bit with rendering.

    16 Gigs of memory seemed reasonable and I simply liked the design, which is why I chose the Dominator Platinum RAM.

    I used to have a GTX 770 Phantom in there but that thing was MASSIVE and I got a good deal on a 970. The reference cooler was rubbish so I decided to investigae in aftermarket coolers. From a couple articles, I gathered that the Arctic Accelero Extreme was too long in combination with my specific graphics card, so I opted for the Twin Turbo. I saw on one post here (forgive me for not remembering by whom it was) that the Twin Turbo fit snuggly with two 120 mm fans at the bottom. And sure it does (see Images below). It's quite a tight fit but it works and it works well.
    Quick Info: If you ever plan on using any type of aftermarket cooler on a reference 970 (short PCB), make sure to get a flat VRM heatsink like this one: https://www.caseking.de/prolimatech...e-gtx-670-660-ti-mit-kurzem-pcb-zura-221.html
    The standard VRM heatsink is way to tall (see image blow) to fit with the Twin Turbo or most other coolers.
    [​IMG]

    At the time of my initial build, the SFX-600 by Silverstone wasn't out, yet, so I had to go for the 450W, which works fine, but I had to replace the fan inside, because it was sooo loud :( Once Corsair releases their 600W SFX PSU I might look into that and see if it's any good.

    Originally I wanted to do a dual 240 rad watercooling loop, but due to budget constraints I chose the H105. I believe my i7 has a bad heatspreader, because under Prime95 I got up to 95°C (YES I checked the thermal paste...twice...) on Intel Burn Test it reaches around 70°-75°. It does turbo to 4.4GHz all the time so maybe that plays a role as well. I haven't had the time to look into the problem in depth and during gaming it doesn't exceed 60° so I guess I'm fine for now.

    Within the next month I plan on getting two Samsung EVO 850 500GB SSDs and pairing them in Raid 0. I suppose a terrabyte of SSD space is enough for all my games.. for now at least. I also plan on getting one or two 1 TB 2.5 inch HDDs for backup and long term storage.

    I would also like to have custom sleeved cables for almost everything but that remains a future project, for now :(

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. XelNika

    XelNika Limp Gawd

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  10. deadz0ne

    deadz0ne n00b

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  11. deadz0ne

    deadz0ne n00b

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    Thank you I didn't know :)
     
  12. Blue Fox

    Blue Fox [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Just finished mine. It's one hell of a squeeze with a thick dual 120mm radiator. Having the 24 pin ATX connector on the top of the board instead of side didn't help either. Only a couple millimeters clearance between a 15mm SSD mounted to the front and the radiator as well. Anyway, made it fit with the following:

    ASRock X99E-ITX
    Xeon E5-1620v3
    32GB DDR4 Samsung ECC Reg
    nVidia GTX 970 (reference)
    Intel 750 400GB NVMe SSD
    Corsair H105
    Silverstone ST45SF-G
     
  13. Qrash

    Qrash Gawd

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    So you have the Intel SSD connected via an Asus Hyper Kit inserted into the M.2 socket? How was that?
     
  14. Blue Fox

    Blue Fox [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Correct. It still doesn't work. :(

    Been going back and forth with ASRock trying to get it working. At least they've been responsive and have provided non-public UEFI builds to get it resolved. Can see more here: http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1855235&page=16

    Wouldn't recommend trying that configuration yourself until I can confirm it's working.
     
  15. Optik

    Optik Limp Gawd

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    Not sure if this is allowed, but it isnt my ebay listing, there is a new v1 on ebay for sale that might interest some of you guys.
     
  16. inchikiboze

    inchikiboze [H]Lite

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    Epic post, Xelnika! Thanks. Surprising results, indeed. You've convinced me, so I'll be cracking my case open and going back to the C14 for some tinkering. If I come up with anything interesting, I'll report. Nicely done, and Corsair should take note.

    On a side note, I also appreciate your posting of the GPU temps. I'm about to upgrade soon from a blower 760, and reading this thread has made me very wary of going with an open-style cooler, but your 3 x intake C14 and 2 x intake H100i setups have the 970 topping out at 74 and 75 C under max load, respectively. Those temps seem perfectly fine to me. Maybe the story would be different with a 980 ti and its higher TDP, but the MSI Twin Frozr 970 or 980 are looking like good options. The "Zero Frozr" feature (fans off at idle) seems just awesome, as well.
     
  17. Kawi

    Kawi n00b

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    I had the same issue with the same motherboard/cpu. Turns out I had LN2 mode on, which is a physical pin you have to move on the small fan daughterboard, and not something you can just change in the BIOS. Maybe it shipped that way, or maybe I accidentally moved it when I built the PC, not sure. Check in the BIOS if it says you are running in LN2 mode (Top of the Tweaker page), and if you are, open it up and move the pin over. My Prime95 temperatures are much more reasonable now.
     
  18. Skhmt

    Skhmt n00b

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    I'm so tempted to build one of those into one of the side panels of an ncase.
     
  19. Curiositie

    Curiositie Limp Gawd

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    Do it!

    Someone at Quakecon not far from me had two 240mm rads, a reservoir, MCP350, and had built the panel into the right side of the case. It was amazing, unfortunately I only had my phone so I didn't get a picture.

    He used angle aluminum to frame the LCD and just cut away some of the holes to make room for the adapter.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2015
  20. panther_king

    panther_king n00b

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    Anyone have any luck or experience using smaller tower coolers like the Thermalright True Spirit 120M, or Noctua U12S?
     
  21. Qrash

    Qrash Gawd

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  22. panther_king

    panther_king n00b

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    Doh; and I image the 92mm variants of the same designs would just be overall noisier, and less effective. I can see why so many people just go in for a AIO water.
     
  23. Curiositie

    Curiositie Limp Gawd

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    I can say that with the fans on ULNA's the old Noctua U9B-SE2 is as close to silent as you can probably get, so 92mm doesn't always mean noisy.

    I idle around 45C, and top out playing games around 65C, which is just fine IMO.

    Edit: 3570K @ Stock
     
  24. XelNika

    XelNika Limp Gawd

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    I was very pleasantly surprised by the MSI card. The cooler is just amazing. My temperatures are lower than on my old 7950 despite the slow fans on the new one.
    I made a custom fan curve for my 7950 which set the fans to 2000-2500 RPM under load and my temps would hit high 80's whereas the MSI 970 has yet to pass 75 C at 1600 RPM.
    The only cooler I've used that could compete is the ASUS DC2, but they don't fit in the NCASE.
    I'll do some testing with a higher CPU overclock and a GPU overclock soon.
     
  25. Virtu

    Virtu Limp Gawd

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    Anyone know how do you properly test a SX600 without it having a standby switch to turn it on/off? Would the standard black/green wire paperclip method work for this PSU? I built my Ncase M1 and the motherboard would not boot. I have an ASUS Impact VII motherboard and when trying to power on, only the 'Power' button on the motherboard would light up and the motherboard's IO panel's reset button lights up too. No peripherals would start or anything.

    I tried hooking up a PSU tester to the 24pin connector and got nothing (hence the question of how to properly test this PSU since it gave no readings but yet some basic lights and etc were lit on the mobo). Want to verify if it is a bad power supply or bad mobo
     
  26. deadz0ne

    deadz0ne n00b

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    Do you have another PSU to test the motherboard? And yes, using a metal paperclip or such, you can short out the PSU. As far as I'm concerned that method works with all PSUs...
     
  27. Virtu

    Virtu Limp Gawd

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    I have a PSU for my current PC but that would be a major PITA trying to disconnect it to test. I will try the jumper method and connect a basic fan first, then if it works, I'll have to man-up and dissemble my current PC to test the ASUS motherboard (and be frustrated doing it).
     
  28. Skhmt

    Skhmt n00b

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    My v4 was delivered today, just over 2 weeks from ordering to my front door. Had it shipped by air, I live in Las Vegas.

    No motherboard, cpu, ram, or psu yet, waiting for skylake and maybe the corsair sfx psu.
     
  29. No Hands 55

    No Hands 55 Limp Gawd

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    got my steel fan bracket and filter today and installed! looks and feels quality, box was destroyed though. hopefully itll keep my build cleaner! now just need to find a way to silence it!
     
  30. Skhmt

    Skhmt n00b

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    What are the noisiest components?
     
  31. No Hands 55

    No Hands 55 Limp Gawd

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    my gpu mainly, ref nvidia blower. psu is quiet other than the chirp whine noise when the fan spins up, but after it starts spinning its silent.

    might try and sell the h105 and get two h75s with an hg10
     
  32. callumbolch

    callumbolch Limp Gawd

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  33. panther_king

    panther_king n00b

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    Do you have that oriented exhausting out the top, or the back? I think I'm going to plug in a NH-U9S; I was thinking 1 side intake fan on the PSU side of the bracket (since the U9S takes up the other spot), and then having it exhaust out the back, and maybe adding an exhaust fan to help. The alternative would be to have a fan on back as an intake, and try to exhaust out the top.
     
  34. Curiositie

    Curiositie Limp Gawd

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    I've got it exhausting out the back, I have yet to try top exhaust.

    Might be worth trying tonight. :)
     
  35. rauldelga

    rauldelga n00b

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    Hey guys. I recently got my case and put my rig together. So far i am loving it, except it was the biggest pain in the ass to put together.

    i5 4690k
    980ti - evga acx2.0+
    h100i

    I have a question regarding the GPU temps. CPU seem great to me as it tops out at 70C @ 4.6ghz - 1.23V. However the GPU idles at around 65C constantly. Under load it hovers in the low 80C. My question is what type of 2x120mm fans would you recommend to mount on the bottom of the case blowing air towards the GPU fans? Should i get pressure optimized fans or just high CFM fans? I prefer to stick with Noctua because im a bit of a fan boy. Noise it not really a concern so long as i can watch netflix from 10 feet away. Thoughts?
     
  36. Necere

    Necere 2[H]4U

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    The GTX 980 dynamically adjusts its clock speed to keep the temperature at ~83C, so there's nothing abnormal there.

    If you want fans on the bottom (e.g. for dust control), go with pressure-optimized fans.
     
  37. brahbruh

    brahbruh n00b

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    Many of you have really nice builds. Let me share my build with you guys! I call this "Too poor for a PSU"

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Specs:
    GPU: 980ti Reference
    HDD: Toshiba 1tb that has been rattling for 3 years
    SSD: crucial m4 128gb
    MEMORY: gskills ripjaw 4gbx2
    MOBO: ASRock Z68M-ITX
    CPU: Intel Core i5 3470
    PSU: M12ii 520w


    Alittle story about why I did this. I wanted this case ever since I saw hardwarecanucks do a video on it. When I saw it, it was still on sale but i decided that is was too expensive. fast forward 1month later it was out of stock. So when the recent pre orders came up i bought it in a heartbeat. However Im did not think it though as I didnt have enough money to buy new part to transfer my old rig into this case so i decided to cheap out for now and just get a new motherboard(the z68) and force fit everything into this case. I still have a 500gb HDD but it's impossible to fit in with all the thich wiring from the ATX psu.
     
  38. Nobu

    Nobu 2[H]4U

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    You might be able to trade your PSU with someone, or else sell it and buy one that'd work for you. Check the FS/T forum. ;)
     
  39. krbuck

    krbuck n00b

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    Hey, you got a working system on a shoestring; you are on your way... the PSU is the only thing holding it back on the appearance side of things. :)
     
  40. Qrash

    Qrash Gawd

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    Why did you detach the hard drive's controller card?