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Tiny GTX 660 i7 Gamer

Discussion in 'PC Build Logs' started by Ratzz, Jul 7, 2013.

  1. BigDave

    BigDave Member

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    Damm mate that's creative :cool:

    I was thinking SSD and a 1Tb lappy drive :thumbup:
     
  2. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    I should have been a woman lol I change my mind so much.

    So, not happy with

    A: the airflow, even though all indications are its working well.

    B: the serviceability, everything is so bloody hard to get at.

    C: the inevitable cable mess with nowhere to put them.



    I've been messing with the fans, and even with everything cooking, there is no more than a couple degrees difference with push/pull fans vs pull only.

    Admittedly though, I havent had this happening on this exact setup yet, because I only have an mATX Z77 board to bench with, and it doesnt fit in any of this :) No overclocking happens on a H61 board :(
    Cant test cooling without overclocking lol... so cooling tests were done on a bench.

    There is no difference at all at idle. Sooo, one of the fans is now gone.

    I still havent bought a Z77 ITX board, although I have decided on the P8Z77-I Deluxe. I like ASUS and the Asrock boards big advantage, the mSATA slot, disappointed me. The ASUS board has a great power circuit, and the other features tick all the right boxes for me I think.



    Also, all of A, B, and C are caused by the PSU, tiny though it is, being positioned overhead the motherboard.


    So I've moved it. It will suck air across the VRMS on this P8Z77 (I've gone back to this since discovering the mSATA on the Asrock board is only SATA2 speeds) and out the back.

    [​IMG]

    Removing one of the fans allows the depth to be reduced. Still plenty of length to fit my GTX660 but not deep enough for a much longer card. This will suck a bunch of air from the front, over the RAM, and out the back. There will be a lattice of holes above the IO shield to allow for this.

    [​IMG]

    1 SSD + 3 1TB laptop drives are the final touch here. Just going to have to be creative with some real short cables maybe? Or I can make a pretty metal cover for that area to simply hide the mess I guess.

    [​IMG]

    This means the box is wider, as you can see on the renders. Not a lot, but those couple inches can make a big difference. The ripple plate I am using is 300mm wide, so I've gone with that as a rear plate. The base plate will be 290mm wide for reasons that will become apparent later.

    New dimensions : 300w 240d 150h

    And just to prove I'm serious...

    [​IMG]

    Shiny.... hmm might have to add some LEDs now..

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2013
  3. BigDave

    BigDave Member

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    Wow, your not having the checker on the outside? Would look awesome polished :thumbup:
     
  4. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    I'm kinda going for an understated but high quality speaker look on the outside, and bling on the inside. The back plate I will actually probably paint black on the outer face. The front face of the box will just have a full coverage cloth clip on cover, just like a speaker, removable and washable because of the rad behind it. The rad will probably fit partially into a hole cut to size in the front face of the box.

    All very nice and stylish but a bit ho hum until you draw the computer out of the box (still running because the box will be no more than a sleeve) and you get that 'holy crap' moment.

    If I stick LEDs into it I will even put them on a contact switch so they dont switch on until the machine is pulled from the box. I can see a few strategically placed LEDs making that whole surface shine...

    Do you think the layout is better? Only slightly larger, but so many advantages gained IMO.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2013
  5. BigDave

    BigDave Member

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    I can't hurt to have a little wiggle room :thumbup:

    Black anodised checker plate would look speaker like :thumbup:
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Some more progress shots.

    I've marked out my holes, and used an angle grinder to cut a few mm inside them. The dremel appears to have gone to a better home grrrr

    Then using a double cut fine bastard file, I have trimmed the the aluminium down to be absolutely perfect. The IO plate just clips in as easily as any good commercial case.

    Its a crap phone with a crap camera (I do have a better phone and a real camera but I also have teenage daughters :D ) but its deadly straight, smooth and accurate, despite appearances in the bad photos.

    Quite proud of it :) I havent decided on ventilation yet, this back plate will be the only exit for air, but I suspect just a big latticed rectangle of 6mm holes is the most likely probability. Pretty much that entire centre of the back will have unimpeded airflow from the front.

    I'll either polish it or paint it black. If I do polish it, it isnt actually quite flat, the tread plate pattern is slightly indented on the back, so polishing it will enhance the appearance of that pattern too.

    It will overlap 10mm over the ends of the case (into a small rebate to make it sit flush) and screw into metal threads within the wood with a single thumbscrew either side. A handle or knob will also be needed to withdraw the frame from the case.

    [​IMG]

    Remembering that the PSU is only (as you are looking at it in this pic) 125mm high and 100mm deep, and that the case ends just before the left hand fan (which wont be there), you can see that a full size drive wont fit height or lengthwise. You can however fit 4 laptop/ssd drives in the empty space here. Cabling will be fun, of course the back of the PSU is also there with its modular cabling to be fitted as well.

    [​IMG]

    Another view. Shiny !! the slight gap at the back of the GPU is because the back is not actually attached to the base yet, its just being held in place by the PSU.

    The cardboard underneath is because the base is actually 5mm up the back, there is a 5mm lip again to overlap the inner case into a rebate. The top of the back plate will have the same 5mm overlap onto the case.

    5mm needs to come off each side of the base, and 5mm of each side will slide into slots inside the case. That total of 10mm will be the overlap on the back as described above.

    Make sense? lol I wrote it and it sounds confusing !!

    [​IMG]

    The fan on the left will be removed, and the edge of the radiator will touch the inside of the front of the case, probably with a rubber surround between them. The GPU will have 10mm clearance from the front of the case. A square hole will be in the front of the case for the radiator to breathe in.

    Of course the base will be shortened to suit all this !

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2013
  7. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Once I get the drives and PSU into place, cable management with both HDD and PSU cables all in one area will be a nightmare.

    I'll probably make some kind of cable cover out of aluminium when I decide exactly where everything goes, and certainly going to have to custom make some cables too.

    I'm thinking this will also help reduce some cable clutter, tidy things up a bit, and useful too !

    http://www.icydock.com

    About $90, thinking seriously about it.

    They make a 6 drive version too, which would fit I think, but the board only has 4 SATA connectors anyway so no point.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  8. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Measuring again, the caddy above has no chance of fitting into this. The extra length of the fans messes it up for me. I still like the idea though, just need to keep an eye out for a suitable solution.


    Some more on the mobo tray though...


    Old mate called, got some ally wire in the TIG, come over at lunchtime and use it if you like..

    So edges still need filing etc but I took my chance. Not great with a welder but I am happy enough with this. As you can see in the pic there are still some unfinished edges but these are all file work so I can get into them later.


    [​IMG]


    On the right, holes for PSU, IO plate and GPU. On the left, the rad will fit where the big space is, switches and USB etc will mount to the left bottom plate in front of the drives. The upper left wont be much use for anything since it will only clear the GPU by 10mm or so.. might make a brace for that end of the GPU to attach to that.

    [​IMG]

    Back sits 20mm lower than the front to avoid clearance problems.

    [​IMG]


    Shiny !!!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. dogcrapau

    dogcrapau Member

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    wow.. good work man.. subscribed!! hope it turns out well.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Thanks :) Its so good to see something actually taking shape after all the planning and mind-changing lol
     
  11. BigDave

    BigDave Member

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    Ratzz would this one suit better??

    http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=20990
     
  12. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    No unfortunately. They are 170 long, which is too long to fit into anywhere. I dont think I could use anything that had any length, including room for cabling, more than 140. I might just have to make a bracket for the drives I guess. As I had in the last few renders, I could fit 6 drives in easily, but again, only 4 sata ports on these little boards, so 4 will do.

    Thanks for taking the time to search though :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  13. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    So hows this looking so far? :)

    As you can see, cable management is going to make or break this.. Edges have all been filed and all looking pretty good.

    Thumbscrews holding the rad in place are temporary of course, they were just handy. 6mm gap either side of the PSU and the GPU (relative to the base) is because 5mm of the base on either side will be in a slot on the outer wooden cover. That means the PSU and GPU will be just brushing past the wood as it slides in, to allow GPU to intake air only from outside the case.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  14. wraith666

    wraith666 Member

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    Have you thought about dust protection dax? I would imagine those holes would suck in dust like no tomorrow.
     
  15. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

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    Have you looked at the primary intake? It's just a fan behind a radiator, the dust is going to come from there.
     
  16. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Yes, there will be a filter over the rad. No, I hadn't thought there would be one over the exhaust holes.

    Since that will be the only outlet for the fair amount of air that 140mm fan moves, its been my presumption that I should have a reasonable amount of positive case pressure, and the exhaust side shouldnt be a problem.

    That said though, the PSU will also be an exhaust, and could potentially draw air in through the back? ... hmmmm

    You think it might be necessary to filter both ends?

    I actually set it up as pull rather than push, just to make it more cleanable too. Pull leaves dirt on the rad on the opposite side to the fan, push leaves dirt on the rad underneath the fan..

    And of course the GPU is independent of the rest of the case in terms of airflow.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  17. wraith666

    wraith666 Member

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    I have found dust has a habit of just settling where ever it feels like. I have my case setup (Phantom 820) as positive pressure with dust filters on the intake and it still finds it's way in but it's no where near as bad as my old case (HAF XM). Surely wouldn't hurt.
     
  18. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Well its no biggie to add one so I might as well. It doesnt show in the pics (deliberately ;) ) but the exhaust holes arent as straight as I would prefer anyway. Perhaps I will cut the whole holy section out and leave a rectangle covered by a filter. That would be a neat fix for that probably anyway.

    The filter that protects the rad will actually be a press in cover, like a speaker cover, that will cover the entire front of the wooden outer case.. Pull it out, wash it, stick it back in. It will probably sit about 10mm proud of the front of the case, so masses of filtration and hopefully good flow too.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  19. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    So I've been looking at where and what orientation to mount drives, how to control cable clutter, etc.

    I've decided I can fit 4 drives. so an SSD and maybe 3x 1.5TB Hitachi laptop drives :)

    The sides of these drives will be screwed into two brackets which will in turn screw into the base of the case.

    I'll stick some renders up later so you can get a better idea, but heres how I am sorting the sata power cables.

    I'm building a bridge :rolleyes:

    [​IMG]

    The cable, not soldered on yet, plugs directly into the modular PSU. I still have one more sata plug to solder to the bridge, then I will solder the cable on.

    I know they look high, but they are standard sata plugs, and the cables would sit much higher than the board above them. Premade connectors are all at least a few inches apart, and still very bulky. Its too hard to join them when this close together yourself.

    Low profile cables dont have sufficient room between the drives to work, so this is the most compact, neat design I could come up with.

    Each set of common connections use 2 of the copper buses on the board, trying to ensure it gets enough current, so each pair of buses are shared by the 4 drives. I have no idea how much current these boards can carry, but if it turns out to be not enough I can always solder in some wire. Does anyone happen to know?

    I envisage, after testing, embedding this whole bridge in a black resin, to offer extra strength to the sata plugs, hide the crappy soldering job and board and even the coloured wires.

    The drives will sit upright, with the bridge atop of them across and almost against the back of the case. Data cables will be in front of the bridge, as you look at them from the front of the case.

    [​IMG]

    The data cables wont be quite so pretty but I have a plan.. I'll get this done first.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2013
  20. OP
    OP
    Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    Planning the block to work something like this. By embedding the whole lot, including the upper 5mm or so of the sata connectors, in black resin, i reinforce the sata connectors pretty solildy. I also get to make the thing look pretty, with the solder, wiring and bus board hidden.


    [​IMG]


    Should all sit in the box like this. Sata cables will be routed to the right as viewed in these pics.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2013

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