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Old 21st Jan 2014, 18:15   #1
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Corsair Obsidian 250D Review

With support for high-end hardware and water cooling, the Obsidian 250D is going straight for the mini-ITX crown.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cas...-250d-review/1
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 19:39   #2
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Damn... After reading the review and studying the images I really though that I had found the ideal mITX case for myself. It's a total winner right up until I realised the storage limitations. While I realise that this is not going to be an issue for the vast majority of those even considering this case but I do need rather than merely want more than just the 2x 3.5" drive bays on offer here.
Once again I find myself saying 'So, so, close... but not perfect'. Why oh why is it so hard to get the case I want? Oh well...
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 19:45   #3
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Will you be using the 5.25in bay? If not you could use a 5.25in>3.5in adaptor in there.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 19:45   #4
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just stick a couple of 4tb drives, that should be ample, lol
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 20:45   #5
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Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!Kenny_McCormick - it's over 9000!!!!!!!!1!1!1!!!
In my opinion this is the best ITX case for a gaming rig right now. If it was released half a year ago I'll have had this and a ITX right now.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 21:31   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
Damn... After reading the review and studying the images I really though that I had found the ideal mITX case for myself. It's a total winner right up until I realised the storage limitations. While I realise that this is not going to be an issue for the vast majority of those even considering this case but I do need rather than merely want more than just the 2x 3.5" drive bays on offer here.
Once again I find myself saying 'So, so, close... but not perfect'. Why oh why is it so hard to get the case I want? Oh well...
Why not just get a NAS or external storage over USB 3, should be still plenty fast enough.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 23:37   #7
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I'm in the market for a new case for my fiance. Might have to pick this up and give her the prodigy.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 23:41   #8
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Fantastic design, this is the type of thing I have been waiting for. Good price as well.
It's about time companies realize we don't need 10 drive bays anymore.


SchizoFrog
You could not only use the 5.25 bay for drives, but there is still a bit of dead space to be had inside the case that could be used. Depending on your cooling solution, I can see getting 6 or more drives in there if you get creative, however, if you need that many drives, a micro case is probably not your best bet anyhow. Personally, I use a small, low powered file server, it makes life easy and allows me to offload a lot of little jobs to it.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 01:03   #9
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OMG sooooooooo close to perfect, why oh why can't they understand what m-ITX is all about???

Room for triple x-fire/SLI? Check.
Fifteen 3.5" HDD bays? Check.
Space for a Silverstone HE02? Check.
Clearance for a 1500W PSU? Check.
240mm Rad mounts? Check.

It's a short list (get it?) but really - we're just aching for an m-ITX enclosure that can house the above hardware and like 20 kickass LED fans, too, so hopefully some manufacturer will be smart enough to come up with something to accommodate this vitally important segment of the market...
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 03:41   #10
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Sold.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 07:52   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toolio20
OMG sooooooooo close to perfect, why oh why can't they understand what m-ITX is all about???
Agreed. There are smaller matx cases out there than this mitx behemoth. Buying this case is as silly as buying a two door sedan... Wait a minute! Why would someone design a large sedan with only two doors you ask? Heck I know! Ask the ones who built this case!
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 08:10   #12
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@ Combatus: Thanks for the suggestion but yes, I would also want to have an optical drive.

@ RichCreedy: It is an option but I currently have 7.25TB of storage it would be a massive investment for not much more space.

@ Bloody_Pete: NAS is another option but again a very expensive one. Ideally I'd go with a 4 drive NAS box but even without drives that is still over 300 although that is a direction I want to go down at some point in the future. Maybe I'll have to look more in to the DIY NAS route our try to build a cheap file server.

@ leslie: Thanks for the suggestion, that was something I had thought too. I am a little apprehensive though as I think you need to actually have the case in front of you to be able to decide what you can do and how you are going to go about it.

@ Toolio20: I assume that remark was directed at my comment. First of all they are not the hardware specs I am thinking of. Secondly I made no comment about manufacturers making bad decisions or not being smart enough to fill my requirements. I quite clearly stated that this case, like certain others are very nearly perfect as my solution, but just not quite. The Prodigy is also perfect except for the fact that I hate the look of the feet and the handles. The other BitFenix alternative also fail FOR ME as the Phenom which looks awesome doesn't have optical drive support and the Colossus Mini has a door and external lights which I am also not interested in. So yes, close but not quite the winner I am looking for.

As for 'why oh why can't they understand what m-ITX is all about?'
I can not disagree with this line of thinking more. ATX, mATX, mITX or any other form of PCs are not 'about' anything and have no specific design that any of them have to follow. PCs are about choice. Buying the components that you choose so you can build the perfect PC that suits you. Just because someone wants to build a PC that doesn't match your line of thinking about a certain form factor doesn't mean that they 'don't get it', it just means that they want to do their own thing. I absolutely do not understand people on a PC modding website who wish to categorise and pigeon hole everything and everyone.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 09:16   #13
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For those who want to use an optical drive and add a 3.5" drive in mitx, this piece is slick.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...9SIA14J1079488

With the imminent Steam assault on living rooms, 4K gaming, wireless 4k video streaming among other things being the future focus, people want a powerful build with massive storage in a small package. Right?

Well, for the size of the 250D, I'll choose matx. I can still install a mitx motherboard but at least I have a choice to do that with massive radiators or build a GTX 790 quad SLI matx rig.

Lian Li PC-Q28 can handle 280mm video cards and 160mm PSUs and cools acceptably (with the cage removed) for almost %85 the size of the Obsidian 250D. I guess that's as small as it gets for the hardware available.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...w,3665-15.html

The real problem with this high end living room concept is the lack of smaller power supplies that can deliver 650W or more at high efficiency with low ripple and noise, and shorter video cards that match GTX 780 and R9 290 performance and cools adequately and quietly. The Silverstone SFX 450W Gold & MSI GTX 760 Gamin ITX are the highest end parts available today for the tiniy tiny builds.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...LD%20Certified

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814127772

If this is good enough for you, or if you're waiting for something epic to come along in these sizes, then you can have excellent choices for true mitx cases from the likes of Silverstone, Jonsbo (rebranded by Cooltek & Rosewill) and Lian Li.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 09:56   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luay
For those who want to use an optical drive and add a 3.5" drive in mitx, this piece is slick.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...9SIA14J1079488

With the imminent Steam assault on living rooms, 4K gaming, wireless 4k video streaming among other things being the future focus, people want a powerful build with massive storage in a small package. Right?

Well, for the size of the 250D, I'll choose matx. I can still install a mitx motherboard but at least I have a choice to do that with massive radiators or build a GTX 790 quad SLI matx rig.

Lian Li PC-Q28 can handle 280mm video cards and 160mm PSUs and cools acceptably (with the cage removed) for almost %85 the size of the Obsidian 250D. I guess that's as small as it gets for the hardware available.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...w,3665-15.html

The real problem with this high end living room concept is the lack of smaller power supplies that can deliver 650W or more at high efficiency with low ripple and noise, and shorter video cards that match GTX 780 and R9 290 performance and cools adequately and quietly. The Silverstone SFX 450W Gold & MSI GTX 760 Gamin ITX are the highest end parts available today for the tiniy tiny builds.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...LD%20Certified

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814127772

If this is good enough for you, or if you're waiting for something epic to come along in these sizes, then you can have excellent choices for true mitx cases from the likes of Silverstone, Jonsbo (rebranded by Cooltek & Rosewill) and Lian Li.
That drive bay adaptor looks great - good spot!

While the PC-Q28 is certainly smaller, something I like so much about the Prodigy is the fact that it's so easy to work with. Admittedly mine's more often than not in bits because of my line of work but building a PC into it is so much easier than the PC-Q28 which we reviewed here. I also hate having the PSU sit on top of the motherboard as it means you have to remove it every time you need to get at any of your core hardware. The 250D is probably as small as I'd like to go and it suits mini-ITX very well. It's easy to forget than many of the smaller micro-ATX cases such as the SG09 and smaller mini-ITX too can be a nightmare to work with as they're so cramped and you can usually kiss any chance of all-in-one liquid coolers or full-on water cooling goodbye too.

With PSU's, unless you're going for a setup with two high-end graphics cards then you really don't need a PSU with more than 450W on tap. Even the power-hungry R9 290X drew 426W gaming at 2,560 x 1,600 - admittedly this is quite close for comfort but the 500/$700 780 Ti's total system draw of 402W still leaves you with over 11 per cent headroom.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:12   #15
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I too like the idea of that drive. Can you it over here in the UK? Or maybe more interestingly maybe the actual drive bay can acquired to be used with any slim optical drive?
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:17   #16
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With PSU's, unless you're going for a setup with two high-end graphics cards then you really don't need a PSU with more than 450W on tap. Even the power-hungry R9 290X drew 426W gaming at 2,560 x 1,600 - admittedly this is quite close for comfort but the 500/$700 780 Ti's total system draw of 402W still leaves you with over 11 per cent headroom.
Remember, though, that a given PSU is at its most efficient when running at 50 per cent load; running closer to 90 per cent will mean it's less efficient. The 80 PLUS Titanium rating, for example, requires 96 per cent efficiency at 50 per cent load but drops to 91 per cent efficiency at 100 per cent load. Sure, 5% of a 450W PSU is 22.5W - but that's still 197.1KWh a year that you could be not burning, a saving of 30 at the Energy Saving Trust's stated average electricity tariff, assuming 24/7 use.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:31   #17
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I had to laugh at the idea of worrying about a saving of 30 over a year when running 24/7. So the real world usage savings are more than likely to be sucked up by the initial cost of the more powerful PSU in the first place.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:35   #18
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I had to laugh at the idea of worrying about a saving of 30 over a year when running 24/7. So the real world usage savings are more than likely to be sucked up by the initial cost of the more powerful PSU in the first place.
You reckon? Half-decent Corsair 450W PSU on Ebuyer, 74. An 850W version, 118. That's break-even in less than 18 months, assuming your electricity bills don't go up in the meantime - and then there's the environmental benefit to consider. (Although, in winter, there's the argument that the 22.5W isn't 'lost' as heat but instead used to make your room warmer and reduce your heating bills accordingly.)

I'm not saying everyone should buy a PSU twice as powerful as their system needs, but I am saying that there are benefits to consider in doing so.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:47   #19
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But aren't you still factoring in usage level of full load, 24/7 over a full year? Who's systems run at that level? A fairly addicted gamer may run their system at full load for what 4-6 hours per day? Someone working with their machine may need it to run full load so let's say what, 8-10 hours? So surely that time frame to recover the costs doubles at minimum and could easily quadruple.
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Old 22nd Jan 2014, 10:52   #20
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But aren't you still factoring in usage level of full load, 24/7 over a full year? Who's systems run at that level?
Anyone who posts in the Folding forum for a start. Those who mine Litecoins and other scrypt cryptocurrencies. Renderfarms.

Like I say, it's not necessarily a problem for everyone - but it's still something to consider if you're a heavy user. Hell, a pro-gamer (i.e. one who makes a living gaming) might play for, what, an average of eight hours a day every day? That 30 a year becomes 10, and you get your break-even in four and a half years - which is still comfortably within the five year warranty (and thus expected worst-case lifespan) of the PSU. And, remember, you've saved the environment the consequences of 22.5Wh per gaming hour of wasted energy generation over that four-and-a-half-year period.

EDIT: Yeah, here you go: an interview with a pro-StarCraft II player. "Before, I was training for about eight hours a day and learned how to play the other races. In order to take a prize in a tournament you need to prepare well for it, see what strategies your opponents are using, and prepare for surprises."
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Last edited by Gareth Halfacree; 22nd Jan 2014 at 10:57. Reason: Added interview link.
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