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Thoughts on vertical-oriented mini ITX cases?

Discussion in 'Portable & Small Form Factor' started by juzz86, Jan 22, 2022.

  1. juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    G'day,

    Embarking on a bit of a downsize project, seeking to expand my knowledge on vertical m-ITX cases.

    I've done ITX before but had a bit more desk last time and used the Thermaltake Suppressor F1, which I put a glass window in and enjoyed for a time.

    Currently using a Silverstone RL08 which I've loved, but it encroaches a bit on the new desk arrangement so I'd like to gain back a bit of the RL08's 430mm depth.

    I've all but settled on a Thermaltake Tower 100 - I like the design, I'm not chasing the absolute lowest cubic volume and it ticks the boxes in footprint. I've also been eyeing the Phanteks Shift 2, but I think the z-height might give me issues with cable length and I don't want to have to extend everything.

    Considerations which might be relevant:

    - Machine is custom-looped CPU/GPU with an external self-contained MORA. I don't need radiator/pump/res mounts or have to worry about any clearances except GPU connector block depth really.

    - I do need to be able to discreetly fit two bulkhead fittings as passthroughs for the water tubes.

    - I would like at least a single mount for an intake fan for positive pressure, especially if the case is not sealed.

    - I am not incorporating RGB into the next rebuild, so visibility is of less concern than dust ingress (we get a lot).

    - I have a 1080Ti, so it needs at least 2-slot GPU compatibility to 280mm. Gen3 riser is fine.

    - Big ATX PSU compatibility a plus but not a necessity.

    - I don't want an open-air 'frame' thing.

    Shortlist:

    - Thermaltake Tower 100 (it's 280mm square footprint, which is about what I've got to work with)
    - SSUPD Meshlicious TG (tiny, looks lovely but the dust ingress will be a concern)
    - G.Skill Z5i (I love it but it's exorbitantly expensive, long to source and a bit big in footprint)
    - Phanteks Evolv Shift 2 TG (love the looks, but might give me cable issues and be tricky to pass water through)
    - Jonsbo V11 (a bit tricky to source, but ideal design)

    I'm aware of a few popular others, but I'm not spending $500 to get a case here - those days are gone.

    Anyone seen anything about that I'm missing?
     
  2. Wacko02

    Wacko02 Member

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    Interesting project Juzzy, specially given some of your requirements and restrictions. The Meshi is a great case, but will struggle in a dusty environment though by it's very nature. Jonsbo looks good but very little room on the rear (or base?) for the water fittings bulkhead. G.Skill case would be good from a dust perspective though and certainly different. Phanteks is pretty damn tall for a desk system (nearly 0.5m high), so I'd probably stick with the Tower 100 if I was you, although it's still a big footprint if all the cooling is being done externally.
     
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  3. OP
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Backing myself into a bit of a corner mate, I know!

    I did miss the NZXT H1 off the list - apart from the price, the form factor is bang on and it's hot. Knowing NZXT it will probably be hot in two ways though, plus I don't need the AIO or PSU really.

    It is a lot of footprint, Ratzz (hope you're doing alright mate!) made this point also back when I did the Suppressor - but floorspace isn't a concern and I don't even count the MORA in the footprint. It's a handy foot fan/warmer under the desk depending on the ambient, and eventually when I find an end-game desk it'll be mounted underneath permanently.

    I'll pop a photo up tonight of the desk space - might help to visualise it a bit more.

    I'm probably not going to do much better with ticking boxes than the Tower for the price though - it also doesn't have top I/O, which will save a reboot or two a year from the cats while they get cozy on top during winter.

    I kind of hoped someone would barge in with a "So much for doing all your research you wanker, you forgot x, y and z!" sort of thing :p :thumbup:
     
  4. Wacko02

    Wacko02 Member

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    The research part is where all the fun is though right? Building a custom loop in a Meshi is my next project so trying to work out what options I have for a pump/res and how the hell i'm going to run the loop, as well as trying to justify to myself the exorbitant cost of buying another GPU for my "2nd" system! :lol:

    The H1 looks very nice to, but would have similar problems with dust as the Meshi I suspect, and comes with a heap of stuff you don't need (PSU and AIO as you noted).
     
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Ah - I'll be watching with interest then. There's a few DDC-enabled CPU block options now - they incorporate a little res with them.

    The H1 is filtered at least - I can live with filters, it's straight mesh or holes that I can't do.

    Also eyeing the Silverstone LD03AF, and maybe an M1 - I think I could get away with 300mm depth if I had to.

    Also found Aklla - in particular the A5 and A5 Max which look alright. I also enjoy the idea of a ZS ST, especially the ported GPU I/O - but again, filters.

    That CaseEnd site is shit hot.
     
  6. woja

    woja Member

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    I love the Meshi that I built for the missus. Super easy to build in especially if you're going for non internal cooling. Sure you can cram it to the gills with a 280mm and 240mm dual rad and internal pump etc but there are a few builds which are nice and elegant relying on the MORA.
    You can always use a magnetic mount dust filter behind the front mesh panel in front of the fans to reduce the dust problem since all the other panels will be exhaust anyway.

    Here's a few external rad builds which I think are pretty cool from reddit.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/SSUPD/comm.../?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3

    https://www.reddit.com/r/SSUPD/comments/s4w7n9/meshless/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3
     
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    That first one is smoking - I'm not a parallel flow fella, but the symmetry is beautiful and the terminations to the QDCs at the back are lovely. I have the same cables for my SFX PSU, so it's nice to see them in service.

    The second one I like bits and pieces - the red/blue external fittings are a nice washing-machine touch, and I absolutely rate the hose wraps.

    Is there room to squeeze a DemCi or something behind the intake mesh? I could do that for sure.

    I hate that the PCIE riser is $120 extra.
     
  8. woja

    woja Member

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    20220123_222333.jpg 20220123_222326.jpg
    Should be able to. The frame is taller than a 280mm rad and the same width as.
    Yeah, sucks about the price of a pcie 4 riser. I just have the default 3.0 as it's only a 3070 in there at the moment.
    Yeah the back of the case lends itself well to bulkheads, plenty of area top and bottom to choose from.
     
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Oh that's very pretty. Yeah it'd only be the mag tape thickness, so that looks good - cheers mate.

    So does my $179 at PCCG get me a PCIE 3.0 riser by default? It doesn't mention it at all - I assumed it shipped bare.
     
  10. woja

    woja Member

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    It comes with the 3.0 riser as default for the $189
    $279 for the 4.0
     
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Awesome - nowhere is that written, thanks mate.

    What do we think about this one: DarkFlash DLH21

    Obviously a notch down in quality, but I like the top design.
     
  12. woja

    woja Member

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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Ohh that's smoking hot, I love it. No top I/O is the dream, but remarkably hard to find this side of $250.

    Project Hyte colours are fantastic - Liquidhaus has good taste :thumbup:
     
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  14. Wacko02

    Wacko02 Member

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    the Hyte one looks pretty good and much better laid out internally, although doesn't come in pink like the Darkflash box so :thumbdn: :lol:
     
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    juzz86

    juzz86 Member

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    Yeah, I love it. Tracking one down seems to be an issue without a freight forwarder though.

    I am actually half-tempted on the white DLH21 - white tubing and silver fittings to match the PSU cables. But none of it will be visible - so the TG Meshlicious makes more sense if I'm going to co-ordinate the insides. Lack of 140mm mounts in the DLH21 is a bit of a pisser too - all my good non-RGB fans are 140s, I'd have to rummage through the drum for a matching pair of decent 120s.
     

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