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Planning FT03 inspired vertical Matx tower

Discussion in 'Modding' started by ashtefere, 23 Feb 2011.

  1. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    Hey everyone.

    I have been working on a really small matx box design for a long time - seems like years. On and off, I have been experimenting with shapes and sizes and think I have come across something nice.

    Mostly, my design has been quite similar to a shuttle until I came across the FT03. In fact, I almost decided on buying the FT03 and using it until I did some more research into it.
    The layout smacks of compromises and afterthoughts - the latching of the panels is terrible, the side intake window is ugly, there is too much empty space in the top and bottom, the PSU arrangement seems silly, most of the thermalright heatpipe gpu coolers cant be used... etc etc etc.

    So I took my shuttle-esq designs and moved some things around.

    The whole idea around this design, in order of importance:

    1. Silence!!!!!
    2. Uncompromised performance - no limitations
    3. Great thermals

    Everything needs to fall into 1 to be possible. I think I have got it.

    The case can hold:

    • MATX Motherboard
    • 3x 2.5" HDD's
    • Full size GPU up to HD6970/GTX 580 size
    • Any kind of GPU cooler - no limitations!
    • Option of 2x140mm fans at rear, or a second GPU
    • full size PSU or extended size PSU
    • full vertical airflow config with no angled fans
    • 2 Sections for the case, rear GPU section, and 'main' section with 120mm fans
    • Size of W: 169mm, D: 251mm, H: About 400mm or less?
    • Uses a top loading slim optical drive


    I will try to post my sketchup designs tonight, but I am wondering how difficult it is to accurately bend/curve aluminium corners like on many of the silverstone/lian li cases.
    Is it a simple matter of using a handbrake or do I need to get it cold rolled with a machine?
    Also, I want to get some air holes done in a similar fashion to the mac pro front area - what machine do I need to ask for to get this done?

    All components can also be outsourced for manufacture and I will simply screw it all together, but at the moment im nearing the end of the sketchup phase.

    -Ash
     
    Last edited: 23 Feb 2011
  2. phinix

    phinix RIP Waynio...

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    Hi Ash! Great to see you posting here on bit-tech!
    Cool idea, I will be watching it closely! :)
     
  3. subtec

    subtec drawing boxes

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    Sounds cool, but those dimensions can't be right? A MATX board is 244x244mm - there's no way to fit that in a 169x231x400mm space (except, maybe, diagonally... but that would be a poor use of space in other ways).
     
  4. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    My bad, typo. Its actually 251, not 231. Good spot.

    ATM my lappy is in pieces due to an ssd upgrade, but I should have pics up tonight.

    -Ash
     
  5. craigbru

    craigbru Cramming big things in small boxes since 2006

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    Intrigued...
     
  6. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    Ok, so, time for pics!

    Perspective:
    [​IMG]

    Side:
    [​IMG]

    Front:
    [​IMG]

    Top:
    [​IMG]


    As you can seen, its only very slightly larger (in volume) than a shuttle. Also, it takes up less desk space.

    And I have managed to fit a lot of cooling performance in the space.

    Now I just need to build a frame design.

    Comments? Suggestions? More than welcome!

    -Ash
     
  7. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    Ports at bottom ? How will you connect your stuff ? Fake bottom like Raven2/Fortress2 have fake tops ?
     
  8. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    Exactly. Like the old G4 cube actually. Its just so much cleaner for cable running/etc. The original height I quoted allows for the raised bottom. Before raising it to 400~mm its actually about 360mm.

    Additionally, there will be a barrier between the first GPU and the rest of the mobo, all the way to the PSU intake, creating a rear GPU chamber.

    -Ash
     
  9. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    Double post, plz delete!
     
    Last edited: 25 Feb 2011
  10. subtec

    subtec drawing boxes

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    Reminds me of this.

    Downside to that layout is rear-exhaust video cards are going to be fighting natural convection currents to some extent, and in your design specifically they'd additionally be competing with the PSU intake. Of course, if you intend never to use rear-exhaust GPUs, it's not really a problem.
     
  11. phinix

    phinix RIP Waynio...

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    Ash, this is very similar structure to my NanoTower - I would suggest you to put PSU on the bottom of the case - thing is PSU is pretty heavy and will be the heaviest part fo the case.
    But that's just me:) I prefer heavy things on the bottom so it holds the whole structure more stable, on top it may be strangly "wobbly"
     
  12. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    I have thought about reversing the GPU fans so that they blow into the case, assisting the GPU intake.
    This would mean any GPU heatsinks could be fanless/passive, and air would exit through the PSU and Bottom - seems to be a better idea.

    As for the PSU placement - I want every natural intake and out-take to be used totally. The airflow should have a natural path (and hence the flipping of the back fans).

    Rear exhausting GPU's would be necessary for crossfire/sli, and the rear fans would of course be removed.

    -Ash
     
  13. cchr

    cchr Minimodder

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    hey man, nice compact design.
    only thing is, that i cant see any HDDs in your design..
     
  14. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    3x ssd's beside the psu, against the side panel.

    -Ash
     
  15. cchr

    cchr Minimodder

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    ah, cool, i didn't notice them:wallbash:

    cheers,
    cheris
     
  16. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

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    Nice to see more vertical, small footprint design :). I'm myself working on a microATX revision of my monolith (phobya contest). But it is not as compact as you since I'm intending to fit two triple rad in it (size is more 300 x 300 x 550).

    I'll keep a close eye on your work log :thumb:
     

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