"Romulus & Remus" - Dual System Build

Discussion in 'Modding Worklogs' started by vladtepes, Jul 13, 2016.

  1. vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    The Plan:

    A dual system build in the one case – a gaming/office PC ("Romulus") and a FreeNAS / Media streaming system ("Remus").

    Why a dual system build? Because they are fairly rare, and why the heck not !


    Background:

    My synology thing crapped out and I got sick of the whole lack of support / interest from them. The people over at FreeNAS are very helpful so I've decided to go that way.


    GAMING / OFFICE "Romulus"

    My existing gaming/office system:

    Case Thermaltake – T31
    PSU THERMALTAKE SP-650P SMART POWER 80Plus Bronze
    MoBo Gigabyte GA-H87-D3H
    CPU intel i7-4770 @ 3.4Ghz
    RAM Kingston HyperX Blu 32Gb (4x8Gb)
    Video Nvidia Geforce GTX-970
    SSD Samsung SSD 840 EVO 250Gb
    HDD Seagate Barracuda 3TB
    HDD WD Green 2TB WD20EZRX
    Optical Drive LG 16x BluRay R/W & DVD R/W (LG-BH16NS40)
    OS upgraded to Win 10

    monitor ASUS 23"
    monitor Eizo 27"
    Microsoft USB multimedia keyboard and mouse

    (The graphics card and 16Gb of RAM are recent upgrades)

    I have since purchased :
    Case Phantek Ethnoo MiniXL (with dual system conversion kit)
    PSU 750W modular ATX
    Mobo Asus Gryphon Z97
    CPU cooling: Air (CPU heatsink and fan).

    As you can see from the case I've chosen – I needed to go to an mATX form factor as opposed to the existing ATX. Thus the new mobo which I chose as it allows me to reuse the CPU, RAM etc.

    I'll be doing some fiddling about with HDDs and perhaps add another 250Gb SSD in there as well... time will tell..

    I will be sticking with air / fan cooling rather than water-cooling; for both simplicity and cost reasons.

    NAS

    I'll give some info regarding the NAS system in a future post.

    MODS

    So the above is all really classed as a system build, whereas I will also be modding the case a bit. I don't want to give away too much but there will be some changes to the Perspex window on the side of the case (the current one is scratched up anyway), perhaps some additional colour on the case, and some lighting effects inside.

    My System Build & Modding experience: None.
    (Well I assembled the current system under a friends supervision a couple of years ago, but that's it...)
    I figure this is a good way to learn though.

    INITIAL BUILD

    I'll initially be building the system (or at least the new mobo with existing stuff) in my existing case, so that I can get it up and running before the July 29 Win 10 upgrade offer finishes. Then I can take my time doing the case mods properly, and then shift the hardware across to the new case.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
  2. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    I subsequently purchased:

    For PC:
    Samsung 500GB SSD 850 EVO

    For NAS:
    Intel Core i3 6100 Dual Core LGA 1151 3.7GHz CPU Processor
    Kingston 120GB SSD 2.5in SSDNow UV400
    Western Digital RED WD30EFRX RED NAS- 3TB

    ... which is a nice segue into -


    NAS SYSTEM "Remus"

    The second system in the Ethnoo Mini XL case will be a system to run FreeNAS and will comprise of the following:

    PSU: Corsair SF600 SFX 80 PLUS Gold 600W (probably)
    Mobo: Supermicro X11SSL-F
    CPU: Intel i3-6100
    RAM: 32Gb Samsung ECC unbuffered RAM
    Boot / System drive: Kingston V400 120Gb SSD
    NAS drives: 4 x WD Red NAS 3TB

    So the plan is 4 x 3Tb drives (12Tb) in a RAID configuration which will give me 6Tb with a 2 drive failure tolerance.
    That's conservative but should be more than enough space for now.

    I could have got a smaller SSD for the boot drive as that's very much overkill.... but it was also as cheap as heck!
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
  3. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    OK the above two posts are essentially cut and pastes of a thread I started elsewhere, but I like OCAU better.... :)

    So now we are up to date...

    I'm still waiting on the mobo for the 'main' build which is annoying heck out of me. (edited to remove adverse comment, as per forum rules). It wouldn't worry me so much if it weren't for the July 29 Win 10 upgrade deadline.

    The 2nd hand Phantek Enthoo MiniXL case arrived. Hilarious! For a micro-ATX form factor case it's substantially larger than my existing ATX form factor case.

    Now I am waiting for my NAS microATX board as it will have to fit where the case is designed to hold a mini-ITX board (the second system, if you will).

    I am pretty confident I'll be able to modify it appropriately, especially given the 2nd system doesn't require any graphics cards, large CPU cooler, or anything bulky like that.

    So the mods required to the actual case will be:
    - fit microATX board into mini ITX space :)
    - cut out / modify side window for 'special evil plan*' I have in mind.

    I'm also seriously considering getting a Phantek power splitter so I can run both systems from the 750W PSU I have, so I won't need to find room for a small form factor PSU.

    And once all that's sorted it will be a full disassemble of the case, and paint.





    *Special Evil Plan may include hollowed out volcano and army of orange jumpsuit clad lackeys with poor marksmanship skills.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
  4. pvtgonzo

    pvtgonzo Member

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    where did you manage to get the case from? Wasnt able to find one from a reputable retailer in Aus when I ordered parts for my build recently.
     
  5. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    From the forums here !

    You after a whole case or just certain parts?
     
  6. pvtgonzo

    pvtgonzo Member

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    I wanted the case with the mini ITX kit, been looking around a bit for it. Can find the mini itx kit but cant find the case short of ebay or newegg and paying a ridiculous amount for shipping. Like I get I'm at the ends of the earth in Cairns but 250 dollars shipping for a case is stupid.
     
  7. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    New case prices are stupid.
    Yes shipping isnt cheap - it is reasonably heavy which can't help...
     
  8. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    OK having had a good look at the case and trying to work out if things will fit, I had a better idea. I decided to buy a new system :D

    So these will be the new specs for the

    GAMING/OFFICE system

    MOBO: Asus Z170I Pro Gaming LGA 1151 Mini ITX
    RAM: Corsair CMU32GX4M2C3200C16R 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 3200MHz Vengeance Black with Red LED
    CPU: Intel Core i7 6700K Quad Core LGA 1151 4GHz Unlocked CPU Processor
    CPU Cooler: bigarse* heat sink and fan. (I'm going with air cooling not water)
    GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX970 FTW
    SSD1: Samsung 950 Pro Series 512GB M.2 SSD (boot/system/office)
    SSD2: Samsung 840Evo 500Gb (game library)
    SSDD3: Might or might not use it Samsung 840Evo 256Gb
    HDD1: Seagate Barracuda 3TB
    HDD2: WD Green 2TB WD20EZRX
    (I'd eventually like to replace these with a larger single WD HDD, as I need to free up a drive bay.)
    Optical: LG 16x BluRay R/W & DVD R/W (LG-BH16NS40)


    So there it is.

    At the moment I'm waiting for various bits to be delivered by post or ready to pick up at umart.

    My main conundrum now is that I had originally intended to paint the case..... now I'm unsure. I'll make a call on that when the mobos get here and I figure out what it will all look like.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
  9. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    Well some stuff has FINALLY arrived yesterday....

    Phanteks Power splitter
    Phanteks dual SSD tray
    Supermicro mobo
    ECC Ram 32Gb

    I also bought myself a Dell 25" monitor to replace the smaller Acer I'm currently using. This will see the Dell as my main monitor and smaller Eizo as my second monitor.

    It'd be nice if the 'Romulus' mobo etc would turn up.....

    I'll need a visit to MSY to pick up another HDD Red NAS and Win 10 Home retail.

    Hopefully I'll end up with an EVGA SuperNOVA P2 1000W PSU and when that turns up I should be OK to start the build!
     
  10. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    So, to keep everything together - these are the specs I am running with.

    CASE: Phanteks Enthoo Mini XL details
    PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA P2 1000W review and Phanteks Power Splitter details


    "Romulus" (Gaming/Office system)

    MOBO: Asus Z170I Pro Gaming LGA 1151 Mini ITX specs
    RAM: G.Skill 32G (2x16G)F4-3200C15D-32GTZKW PC4-25600 DDR4 3200 Mhz
    CPU: Intel Core i7 6700K Quad Core LGA 1151 4GHz
    CPU Cooler: Thermaltake Water 3.0 Riing RGB 360mm AIO info
    GPU: Gigabyte GeForce GTX1070 mini-ITX
    SSD1: Samsung 950 Pro Series 512GB M.2 SSD (boot/system/office)
    SSD2: Samsung 840Evo 500Gb (game library)
    SSDD3: Might or might not use it Samsung 840Evo 256Gb
    HDD1: WD Blue 6TB
    Optical: LG 16x BluRay R/W & DVD R/W (LG-BH16NS40)
    OS: Windows 10 Home

    "Remus" (FreeNAS system)

    Mobo: Supermicro X11SSL-F specs
    CPU: Intel i3-6100
    RAM: 32Gb Samsung ECC unbuffered RAM
    Boot / System drive: Kingston V400 120Gb SSD
    NAS drives: 6 x WD Red NAS 3TB in Raid Z2 (2 drive failure tolerance)
    OS: FreeNAS (ZFS)


    UPS: Cyberpower CP1500EPFCLCD info (Australian version thereof)
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
  11. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    and some gratuitous pictures of some of the 'stuff'

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    insert (pic of ram)
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2017
  12. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    Still waiting for some bloody cables to arrive before I can continue this build !

    EDIT 02/09/2016: Bloody cables have arrived, now tearing my hair out getting this hooked up, and trying to achieve some semblance of cable management....
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2016
  13. Excellent Mong.

    Excellent Mong. Member

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    Any pics? Sounds like a cool build. I just built a new m-ITX box with almost identical specs to your gaming side and performance is great, really easy to OC the 6700k with the Asus mobo too. Never used a small form factor rig before, but hard to see myself going back now.
     
  14. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    Edit: OK I am retrospectively adding this post in here so it makes more sense rather than put it at the end.
    As I mentioned, I had decided to use an AIO CPU cooler for the gaming system (Romulus) – a 120mm wide rad and 3 120mm LED fans.
    The top of the case has provision for both 120 and 140mm radiators/fans BUT the location of the mini-ITX mobo gives VERY little clearance between the mobo and the radiator. Combine this with the criticality of having the radiator lines exit in a place which wouldn’t cover anything crucial on the mobo and the mounting was more difficult than I’d imagined.

    Having determined that the ‘slots’ for mounting screws for the rad/fans were not long enough, I had to use the obvious (but somewhat dramatic) solution…
    [​IMG]

    The following picture shows where I made the, umm, adjustments:
    [​IMG]
    You can see 1-4 went fine, but in 5,6 I accidentally cut all the way through one end. Fortunately it was still more than adequate as a mounting point.

    So I ended up with this:
    [​IMG]

    And was able to mount the radiator, thus:
    [​IMG]

    The fans are then mounted above the radiator in a ‘pull’ configuration thus:
    [​IMG]

    Lining up the screws to secure all this in place was… fun. But not at the time. In fact come to think of it, it was a PITA. But I got there.
    [​IMG]

    You can see in the following pic the very close tolerances involved, and the CPU where the AIO cooler heatsink has to go…
    [​IMG]

    You can see the hoses appear long in this pic but the length was useful as it subsequently allowed the heatsink/block to be mounted in the correct orientation.
    [​IMG]

    Not the neatest job in the world bit as good as it gets given the limitations under which I was working:
    [​IMG]

    The micro ATX board for the NAS (Remus) utilises the standard Intel cooler, which is perfectly good for a non-overclocked chip.
    [​IMG]

    In the above photo (and below) you can see the 120mm rear case fan exhausting air to the outside world….
    [​IMG]
    It was working then but has since stopped, I’ve yet to figure out why….. No doubt just a plug or something…..

    And so begins a cable management nightmare….
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (In case you are wondering - that thing in the top LH corner is Phantek’s power splitter supplying both mobos from the one PSU)


    At the time I did this, it all worked… still does actually.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2017
  15. OP
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    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    Meanwhile I've been having some fun working out some names for parts of my system.

    So far we have Romulus and Remus (the twins) which I think is an apt them for my system.

    My UPS will be named "Juno" as well as the Queen of the Gods she was the Protector of Rome. So Juno protects Romulus and Remus... :)
    I had also considered 'Vesta' a goddess of the sacred fire...

    Thinking of using "Mercury" (messenger of the gods) as something to do with LAN/wireless/network name.


    My chromecast device is called "SQPR" (= the people and Senate of Rome) because it's the recipient of the benefits provided by Romulus and Remus.....

    :)
     
  16. Reaper_1994

    Reaper_1994 Member

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    Any updates Vlad? Keen to see this.


    p.s. Pics is the best option. You can imgr or OCAU pix.
     
  17. OP
    OP
    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    I've been flat out with other things, but will do an update as soon as I can.
    The guts of it are still a bit untidy - mainly because I need some decent, correct length power cables for the graphics card... cables with no surplus plugs hanging off them, no extra length, etc. Not sure where I can get these for a reasonable cost though.

    Thanks for your interest.
     
  18. OP
    OP
    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    OK well I got a GTX 1070 ITX size graphics card. Thinking, as I believe is fair, that it would be smaller and thus easier to fit into this build. So you''d think eh?

    It turns out though that while shorter, the ITX card is substantially taller than the GTX970 full size card it replaced (sorry no pic of that installed).

    Here's the 1070 in place...
    [​IMG]
    You can see (1) where the corner of the car nestles into the corner of the case with just 1/2 of 3/8 of bugger all to spare! Getting it in there wasn’t easy, getting it out probably impossible!

    Note (3) the 8 pin (6+2) power plug supplying the GPU, and how it extends further out than the part of the case (2) which supports the removable side of the case! I can't lay my hands on the side of the case at the moment but I'm pretty sure that's not going to work....

    I would be very grateful for any suggestions people might have. Is it possible, for example, to get a right-angled 8 pin plug which would help alleviate this issue?

    Here's a better view of the GPU plug (and a nest of other wires that is, shall we say, sub-optimal).

    [​IMG]

    This is the inside of the case (“window side”) showing at top/left and mounted toward you as you look at it is the mini-ITX board (gaming) and below and further away from you, is the micro-ATX board for the FreeNAS system

    [​IMG]

    Again with the cable nightmare….. but you aint seen nothing yet !!!’


    Here’s the other side of the case, from the front…
    [​IMG]

    OMG you say, that’s horrible! Yes, but not as horrible as when you look at it from the side.
    Keeping in mind this is the “çable management” area….

    [​IMG]

    The Green cables are SATA for the NAS drives.
    That box hanging out in mid air is the fan controller for the CPU AIO cooler radiator.

    They work, and change pretty colours and so on…
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    But the cable lengths (from CPU fan connector on mobo to box, and box to fans) are all wrong making it a nightmare to place anywhere.

    Going back to that earlier picture…
    [​IMG]

    You can see the obvious PSU in the top RH corner. This PSU supplies both systems via a Phantek’s power splitter, seen at the top LHS of the photo. There are a LOT of cables here and running between the two.
    The bundle of (mostly red) cables below the splitter are the power feeds to the MOBOs.
    And you can see the black cables snaking down from the PSU supplying power to the NAS drives. There are more supplying power to the 2 SSDs (bottom RHS of pic) as well as to the three things in the 5.25”bays in the front of the case….

    [​IMG]

    The main power button (top RHS) is for the larger mobo – the NAS system. There are 2 USB connector for this on top of the case (not shown).
    The top most bay is the controls for the mini-ITX mobo (gaming system) – power, HDD light, mic, headphone, 2 x USB3. Unfortunately there is an “ïssue” with this in that it is buggered. The USB connectors work fine but the power switch doesn’t (I have to resort to shorting the terminals on the mobo to start it, which is sub--optimal…. ). The plugs for the mic and headphones are also pushed back further behind the faceplate than they should be so they don’t work either. And the HDD light.. well, it’s not plugged in LOL

    I am trying to work out an alternative location for these USB ports and switches because ideally I’d like to use this slot for a fan controller…
    Below this is located the 6TB HDD for the gaming system, as all the other HDD bays are full (NAS drives) and this is the only place that was available. Again, suggestions are welcome as to where to relocate this… perhaps on the floor of the case just behind the other HDD bays ??

    There is also a BR/DVD-RW drive, purely for its READ function, so I will be able to digitise my CD and DVD collection…. Eventually….

    So as mentioned I am open to input and suggestions as to how to attack the issues I’ve highlighted (yes, I need to get a pile of small cable ties, but from where?).

    If you have any questions regarding the (ongoing) project please ask them and I’ll do my best to answer.

    Cheers all

    P.S. I've gone back and edited post#14 to include some more photos of issues along the way.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2017
  19. mad_mic3

    mad_mic3 Member

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    the dollar shop or other cheap shops for small cable ties
    have you ventured into cable shortening yet ?, a pain but it helps out heaps;)
    with the usb, pwr button in the 5 1/4' bay, pull it apart and mount it directly in the case panel where ever suits best
     
  20. OP
    OP
    vladtepes

    vladtepes Member

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    Can anyone think of a way of mounting this is the side-panel? This is complicated, of course, by the fact the side panel is removable - but there maybe a way and I'm open to suggestions. :D
     

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