Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Tower considerations

  1. #1
    Registered+
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Birmingham
    Posts
    56
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked
    2 times in 2 posts
    • CHiLL's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus P8P67
      • CPU:
      • Intel Core i7-2600K
      • Memory:
      • Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1333MHz
      • Storage:
      • Samsung 840 EVO 120GB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • KFA2 GeForce GTX 580
      • PSU:
      • Corsair 750W HX Modular
      • Case:
      • Antec Nine Hundred
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10 Home x64
      • Monitor(s):
      • LG 22" 1080p
      • Internet:
      • Sky ADSL

    Tower considerations

    Over the coming months I plan on building a replacement gaming PC. I'm pretty much decided on the specifications, but I'm not sure about the type of case to use.

    At the moment, I have an Antec 900 case, which is huge, cumbersome and weighs a tonne, so I'd like to replace it. However I don't want a case as large, even if they may be better for cooling.

    I don't plan on having any other expansion cards other than a GTX 970/980 so a smaller case would be ideal...but how small?!

    I like the idea of having the case as small as possible, but the room the PC is in can get quite warm. I do plan on having a Corsair water-cooler for the CPU, but keeping the GPU air-cooled.

    I've seen the mATX/iATX cases...they solve the heigh issues, but they trade height for width it appears...and I think the case would then be too wide to fit comfortably on the underneath/foot shelf of the desk.

    I was hoping to go smaller than a standard ATX case, but short of going down the whole console/steam machine sized casing (which I assume isn't going to be great for cooling), I'm a little stuck!

    Any help would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Liverpool
    Posts
    139
    Thanks
    10
    Thanked
    7 times in 6 posts

    Re: Tower considerations

    There's lots of Mini ITX form factor cases out there. I particularly enjoy the cases from Silverstone, particularly the Raven range. However some of them may be too small for you.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    The Third Foundation
    Posts
    919
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked
    99 times in 91 posts

    Re: Tower considerations

    How warm is quite warm? Are we talking 40-50°C here or just a few degrees above normal?

    What sort of width do you have to work with?

    Graphics cards at the moment put out several times the heat of a CPU so that should probably be your priority for an improved cooler. Although air cooling tends to work better in small cases as mounting points for 120mm radiators are scarce.

  4. #4
    Not a good person scaryjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Manchester
    Posts
    15,102
    Thanks
    1,209
    Thanked
    2,254 times in 1,854 posts
    • scaryjim's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Dell Inspiron
      • CPU:
      • Core i5 8250U
      • Memory:
      • 1x 8GB DDR4 2400
      • Storage:
      • 128GB M.2 SSD + 1TB HDD
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Radeon R5 230
      • PSU:
      • Battery/Dell brick
      • Case:
      • Dell Inspiron 5570
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10
      • Monitor(s):
      • 15" 1080p laptop panel

    Re: Tower considerations

    Hmmm, interesting

    Firstly, have you considered a smaller ("ITX") graphics card? There are short versions of the 970 out there, or if you can stretch the budget AMD's R9 Nano has been price hacked to around £400 and out-performs the GTX 980. One of those really opens up the options.

    As to the cases themselves, that largely depends on what you personally want. If you prefer towers there are some mATX towers out there that are shorter and slightly narrower than conventional towers. Cube cases are a nice option; slightly wider than a tower but smaller overall. Problem is, everything is a compromise, so without knowing your priorities and the space you need to fit your case into, it's hard to make any good recommendations...

  5. #5
    Anthropomorphic Personification shaithis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    The Last Aerie
    Posts
    10,856
    Thanks
    645
    Thanked
    872 times in 736 posts
    • shaithis's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus P8Z77 WS
      • CPU:
      • i7 3770k @ 4.5GHz
      • Memory:
      • 32GB HyperX 1866
      • Storage:
      • Lots!
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Sapphire Fury X
      • PSU:
      • Corsair HX850
      • Case:
      • Corsair 600T (White)
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10 x64
      • Monitor(s):
      • 2 x Dell 3007
      • Internet:
      • Zen 80Mb Fibre

    Re: Tower considerations

    I still think ITX is a tad too small for a high-end gaming rig.....maybe in 12 months time it will be more viable.

    I'd still favour mATX for now personally and would lean towards the Fractal Define Mini.
    Main PC: Asus Rampage IV Extreme / 3960X@4.5GHz / Antec H1200 Pro / 32GB DDR3-1866 Quad Channel / Sapphire Fury X / Areca 1680 / 850W EVGA SuperNOVA Gold 2 / Corsair 600T / 2x Dell 3007 / 4 x 250GB SSD + 2 x 80GB SSD / 4 x 1TB HDD (RAID 10) / Windows 10 Pro, Yosemite & Ubuntu
    HTPC: AsRock Z77 Pro 4 / 3770K@4.2GHz / 24GB / GTX 1080 / SST-LC20 / Antec TP-550 / Hisense 65k5510 4K TV / HTC Vive / 2 x 240GB SSD + 12TB HDD Space / Race Seat / Logitech G29 / Win 10 Pro
    HTPC2: Asus AM1I-A / 5150 / 4GB / Corsair Force 3 240GB / Silverstone SST-ML05B + ST30SF / Samsung UE60H6200 TV / Windows 10 Pro
    Spare/Loaner: Gigabyte EX58-UD5 / i950 / 12GB / HD7870 / Corsair 300R / Silverpower 700W modular
    NAS 1: HP N40L / 12GB ECC RAM / 2 x 3TB Arrays || NAS 2: Dell PowerEdge T110 II / 24GB ECC RAM / 2 x 3TB Hybrid arrays || Network:Buffalo WZR-1166DHP w/DD-WRT + HP ProCurve 1800-24G
    Laptop: Dell Precision 5510 Printer: HP CP1515n || Phone: Huawei P30 || Other: Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Pro 10.1 CM14 / Playstation 4 + G29 + 2TB Hybrid drive

  6. #6
    Registered+
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Birmingham
    Posts
    56
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked
    2 times in 2 posts
    • CHiLL's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus P8P67
      • CPU:
      • Intel Core i7-2600K
      • Memory:
      • Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1333MHz
      • Storage:
      • Samsung 840 EVO 120GB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • KFA2 GeForce GTX 580
      • PSU:
      • Corsair 750W HX Modular
      • Case:
      • Antec Nine Hundred
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10 Home x64
      • Monitor(s):
      • LG 22" 1080p
      • Internet:
      • Sky ADSL

    Re: Tower considerations

    Thanks for all the replies!
    Quote Originally Posted by EndlessWaves View Post
    How warm is quite warm? Are we talking 40-50°C here or just a few degrees above normal?

    What sort of width do you have to work with?

    Graphics cards at the moment put out several times the heat of a CPU so that should probably be your priority for an improved cooler. Although air cooling tends to work better in small cases as mounting points for 120mm radiators are scarce.
    The room is often within the 30-40°C range during summer.

    The desk shelf is approximately 20cm deep. (The case would be side on as you look at it to fit on the desk.
    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post
    Hmmm, interesting

    Firstly, have you considered a smaller ("ITX") graphics card? There are short versions of the 970 out there, or if you can stretch the budget AMD's R9 Nano has been price hacked to around £400 and out-performs the GTX 980. One of those really opens up the options.

    As to the cases themselves, that largely depends on what you personally want. If you prefer towers there are some mATX towers out there that are shorter and slightly narrower than conventional towers. Cube cases are a nice option; slightly wider than a tower but smaller overall. Problem is, everything is a compromise, so without knowing your priorities and the space you need to fit your case into, it's hard to make any good recommendations...
    I didn't know smaller graphics cards existed actually, so I may have a look into that. However, I think £300 on a graphics card is currently my budget, and I'd ideally like to stick Nvidia...yes I'm a stickler, I've used Nvidia cards for as long as I've been building PCs.
    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    I still think ITX is a tad too small for a high-end gaming rig.....maybe in 12 months time it will be more viable.

    I'd still favour mATX for now personally and would lean towards the Fractal Define Mini.
    If it's too small now, what would change in the future to become more viable?

  7. #7
    Anthropomorphic Personification shaithis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    The Last Aerie
    Posts
    10,856
    Thanks
    645
    Thanked
    872 times in 736 posts
    • shaithis's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus P8Z77 WS
      • CPU:
      • i7 3770k @ 4.5GHz
      • Memory:
      • 32GB HyperX 1866
      • Storage:
      • Lots!
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Sapphire Fury X
      • PSU:
      • Corsair HX850
      • Case:
      • Corsair 600T (White)
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10 x64
      • Monitor(s):
      • 2 x Dell 3007
      • Internet:
      • Zen 80Mb Fibre

    Re: Tower considerations

    Quote Originally Posted by CHiLL View Post
    If it's too small now, what would change in the future to become more viable?
    Lower voltages and HBM RAM
    Main PC: Asus Rampage IV Extreme / 3960X@4.5GHz / Antec H1200 Pro / 32GB DDR3-1866 Quad Channel / Sapphire Fury X / Areca 1680 / 850W EVGA SuperNOVA Gold 2 / Corsair 600T / 2x Dell 3007 / 4 x 250GB SSD + 2 x 80GB SSD / 4 x 1TB HDD (RAID 10) / Windows 10 Pro, Yosemite & Ubuntu
    HTPC: AsRock Z77 Pro 4 / 3770K@4.2GHz / 24GB / GTX 1080 / SST-LC20 / Antec TP-550 / Hisense 65k5510 4K TV / HTC Vive / 2 x 240GB SSD + 12TB HDD Space / Race Seat / Logitech G29 / Win 10 Pro
    HTPC2: Asus AM1I-A / 5150 / 4GB / Corsair Force 3 240GB / Silverstone SST-ML05B + ST30SF / Samsung UE60H6200 TV / Windows 10 Pro
    Spare/Loaner: Gigabyte EX58-UD5 / i950 / 12GB / HD7870 / Corsair 300R / Silverpower 700W modular
    NAS 1: HP N40L / 12GB ECC RAM / 2 x 3TB Arrays || NAS 2: Dell PowerEdge T110 II / 24GB ECC RAM / 2 x 3TB Hybrid arrays || Network:Buffalo WZR-1166DHP w/DD-WRT + HP ProCurve 1800-24G
    Laptop: Dell Precision 5510 Printer: HP CP1515n || Phone: Huawei P30 || Other: Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Pro 10.1 CM14 / Playstation 4 + G29 + 2TB Hybrid drive

  8. #8
    Not a good person scaryjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Manchester
    Posts
    15,102
    Thanks
    1,209
    Thanked
    2,254 times in 1,854 posts
    • scaryjim's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Dell Inspiron
      • CPU:
      • Core i5 8250U
      • Memory:
      • 1x 8GB DDR4 2400
      • Storage:
      • 128GB M.2 SSD + 1TB HDD
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Radeon R5 230
      • PSU:
      • Battery/Dell brick
      • Case:
      • Dell Inspiron 5570
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 10
      • Monitor(s):
      • 15" 1080p laptop panel

    Re: Tower considerations

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    Lower voltages and HBM RAM
    And also 14nm production for GPUs, which will enable higher performance in smaller cards. If AMD are to be believed (and they've been pretty good on their claims in the last couple of years) nextthis year's new cards will be 2x - 4x faster than their current equivalents - or perhaps more to the point they will use 20% - 50% of the power for the same performance. It means a mid to high end card like the R9 380 will be replaced by a card more like the R7 360, which will mean much smaller PCBs and coolers, and less heat given off generally. That makes it easier to get that level of performance into a small computer.

    Personally I reckon that the time for ITX gaming arrived with Nano, but it does require being willing to invest in workstation/server class components.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    The Third Foundation
    Posts
    919
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked
    99 times in 91 posts

    Re: Tower considerations

    Quote Originally Posted by CHiLL View Post
    The desk shelf is approximately 20cm deep. (The case would be side on as you look at it to fit on the desk.
    That's not too bad.

    What about something like Lian-li's new PC-Q04? 19.4cm wide with a profile the same size as a sheet of A4 paper. The 140mm fan blowing directly onto the graphics card should keep that plenty cool enough, although you'd have to forgo your closed loop CPU cooler and you'd probably not want to overvolt the CPU.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •