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Old 21st Jan 2017, 20:54   #1
sk8ter646
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M-ITX case designing

Hi Guys

So this is going to be my planning thread for a new project im working on.

a little background about the project...

I work out at sea in the merchant navy working 4 weeks away and 4 weeks at home. For the last 8 years ive been taking expensive laptops with me that have never really cut the mustard tbh.

So the new plan is! create a nice small PC thats as slender as reasonably possible with space for "normal" components.

Ive been playing around in Sketchup a little bit and so far this is what i have briefly come up with.



I have used an ITX motherboard and GFX card, the PSU will be a Seasonic 350w Modular TFX psu if i can get hold of one.

At present i have put 2 2.5" HDDs under the GFX card but not sure on the thermal implications of this....

This current box comes in at around 6L in volume putting it firmly under the size of the Xbox One.

I am planing to use Perspex for the whole case and if anyone has and ideas please do let me know.

I know there are a few off the shelf cases around but ive found that they are either 8L+ in volume
with space for BIG GFX cards or uber small (the 4L NFC S4 Mini) but using external PSUs which i really want to avoid aswell.

Thanks
Tom
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Old 21st Jan 2017, 21:38   #2
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That's looking good, there's a lot of case making info and ideas over on smallformfactor.net.
Some of those have also featured on [H]ardforum
I see you've been looking at Diesel Engine, which has been a one off to small production success.
GLW build.
I really don't like laptops any more, and a small PC is great, as you can tinker with it and upgrade without proprietary parts being required.
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Old 21st Jan 2017, 21:47   #3
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Originally Posted by Arboreal View Post
That's looking good, there's a lot of case making info and ideas over on smallformfactor.net.
Some of those have also featured on [H]ardforum
I see you've been looking at Diesel Engine, which has been a one off to small production success.
GLW build.
I really don't like laptops any more, and a small PC is great, as you can tinker with it and upgrade without proprietary parts being required.
Thanks

I did indeed like the Diesel Engine, however wasn't a huge fan of the FlexAtx PSU and I'd like to try and avoid the costly cutting and bending of steel.

I'm planning more of a Pravin type case.
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Old 23rd Jan 2017, 00:13   #4
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I'm all for crafting something by hand, but given your proposed layout I think it's worth looking at the Fractal Node 202 and Silverstone Raven RVZ02.
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Old 23rd Jan 2017, 09:24   #5
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I'm all for crafting something by hand, but given your proposed layout I think it's worth looking at the Fractal Node 202 and Silverstone Raven RVZ02.
I would look at both of the above, however they are both double the size of what I'm looking to make

Plus with that attitude everyone who has ever scratch build a case may aswell just buy one....
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Old 23rd Jan 2017, 12:33   #6
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From a purely aesthetic standpoint, I would either chamfer all the corners, or just one. Just the one, and put your "front" IO and power/reset buttons there.

Also don't forget to take into account the connectors and bend radius for cables coming out of the PSU, it looks a little tight there.

Alternate PSU? Down 50W and not modular...
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Old 23rd Jan 2017, 12:40   #7
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From a purely aesthetic standpoint, I would either chamfer all the corners, or just one. Just the one, and put your "front" IO and power/reset buttons there.

Also don't forget to take into account the connectors and bend radius for cables coming out of the PSU, it looks a little tight there.

Alternate PSU? Down 50W and not modular...
Good idea about the one corner will have a look.

I have left a reasonable amount of space for the cables along the front of the case so hopeing to not have any issues.

The main reason for using the modular TFX PSU was so that I can easily knock up a custom wiring harness for the case without having to crack open the PSU.
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Old 23rd Jan 2017, 14:58   #8
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HOLES AND AIRFLOW. You will need vents everywhere. That'll be a 250W heater. I have an In-Win Chopin with only a 4770 inside, it's full of vents and on sustained full load the whole thing is too hot to touch.

Also look at things like the Silverstone Raven or Fractal Design mini-ITX cases. Not as small but they are guaranteed to work and you won't need a small GPU.
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Old 26th Jan 2017, 20:11   #9
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So i have been playing with Sketchup a little bit more and produced this...



As you can see plenty of ventilation
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Old 26th Jan 2017, 20:44   #10
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You've been busy, fella.
That's looking good, and much more likely to stay cool.
Great work, nice to see a TFU PSU in use BTW.
I see that Silverstone have a new TFX on the way - more choice for small boxes
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Old 27th Jan 2017, 22:21   #11
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Great work, nice to see a TFU PSU in use BTW.
I see that Silverstone have a new TFX on the way - more choice for small boxes
Yeah still a WIP, got to actually do the measuring to make it a proper case now!!

Do you have a link to the Silverstone TFX PSU I can't find anything??

Thanks
Tom
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Old 28th Jan 2017, 08:21   #12
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I had to think for a moment...
It's here on smallformfactor.net
Be Quiet also list a 300W TFX
BQ don't get talked about much compared to Silverstone - my Parvum ITX i3/GTX660 has been running very happily on a BQ 300 SFX for a couple of years BTW
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Old 29th Jan 2017, 12:37   #13
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Ah yeah ive seen the none modular TFX psus, going to try and get a seasonic mondular one as this will make the custom wiring harness alot easier to make.
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Old 30th Jan 2017, 11:21   #14
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I'm wandering about your hole/strut ratio and the thickness/thinness of the struts - I recon those need beefing up a bit or you risk snapage...
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