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Hardware  » Getting ready to build. First, the case

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25 posts found
  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  7/26/13 5:13:38 AM#1

I'm looking for a full size tower case. Budget is not much of a consideration but I don't really want to get into the Cosmos II range either. I'm looking for something with good air cooling--preferably with large quiet fans.

 

I'm leaning toward the CM Strorm Stryker but would love to hear about your personal favorites.

  syntax42

Elite Member

Joined: 3/30/07
Posts: 1072

7/26/13 12:16:42 PM#2

I am not keen on cases which position power supplies to blow hot air onto the CPU, or the GPU in the case linked above.  It just seems like an oversight in design that has been accepted for too long.  My current PC was custom-built inside of a Pelican Case.  The air flow is designed to remove heat from the case for each of the major heat-generating components.  This is achieved with only two case fans - one for the GPU and one for the CPU.  The power supply's fan points toward the exterior of the case instead of toward the CPU.  Air vent holes are large, but positioned so air flows across the intended parts to be cooled before exiting.

 

If you find a case with well-thought-out cooling, let me know.  My Pelican Case idea was mostly for travel, but the weight and size make it only suitable for road-trips.  I could use just about any computer case for that.

  jdnewell

Elite Member

Joined: 7/04/06
Posts: 1798

7/26/13 12:29:56 PM#3

I used to use full tower cases but have switched over to mid tower for both my PCs.

With a case as big as the one you linked air flow wont be an issue, neither will it matter where the PSU is. Which from the pics it is in pretty much the standard place in a case.

If you are just putting together a regular gaming rig. I.E. One GPU, Air cooled CPU,  ect then you wont have any issues at all with cooling by using the fans that come with the case. If you are doing an sli / xfire setup with high end GPUs, high end liquid cooling, ect. then you may have to put a little thought into it.

A case that big is really made for very high end rigs that need alot of airflow, fans, ect to disperse a large amount of heat. For most people a mid tower case with thought out fan placement is more than enough.

I have and I5 2500k oc to 4.4, a 7870 OCd , SSD, 2x 2tb HDD, 16gb RAM, Corsair H60 cpu cooling,  Seasonic 550w psu, ect in my mid tower case with 3 fans. My temps stay fine even under heavy gaming load for hours and hours. Plus it does not weigh 40 pounds and serve as a desk when not in use.

If you have used full tower cases in the past you know what to expect. If you have not then you may want to consider a really good mid tower unless your building an uber rig.

 

Just my 2cp

 

  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3303

7/26/13 1:56:58 PM#4

With a full tower, as far as cooling goes, it will be hard to go wrong. If the case doesn't have fans stock, it's a simple matter of adding them where you want them (and fans are cheap, $15 for a very good one, $5 for a cheap one).

I am personally a Lian Li fan. They are pricey compared to some of the competition, but I appreciate their clean no-frills designs, the well-thought out interiors, and the all aluminum chassis is sturdy, light, and easy to mod.

Really, though, it comes down to aesthetics with a full tower. Whatever looks good to you - they are all going to perform more or less the same because you'll have so much empty space, even if you are doing 3xSLI or something that requires a lot of space. Full sized towers are ~big~.

  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3303

7/26/13 2:06:35 PM#5


Originally posted by syntax42
I am not keen on cases which position power supplies to blow hot air onto the CPU, or the GPU in the case linked above.

Power supplies blow outward. They pull air from inside the case, which aids in overall cooling of the CPU/GPU.

Once upon a time power supplies blew inward, way back in the original ATX standard (1995), when they thought they could get away with using the PSU fan for the CPU heatsink, and the CPU wouldn't require it's own fan. Once CPU's started requiring their own fans, it became a better idea to use the PSU to exhaust that heat out, rather than blow already warm air on the CPU, and ATX PSU manufacturers started to change back in the late 1990's.

So no matter where you position your power supply, unless you install it backwards, it won't blow hot air onto a CPU or GPU. It will pull hot air out.

  miguksaram

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/29/03
Posts: 817

7/26/13 5:44:03 PM#6

While there is certainly nothing wrong with the CM Storm Stryker I'm going to assume you choose it either based on looks and/or popularity of the model/brand.

Might I suggest if money really isn't an issue (up to a certain point of course) that you look into getting a quality Aluminum case such as those available from Silverstone or Lian-Li.  There is also Caselabs which if I were looking into full tower would probably be my first choice.   They are hard to beat but will cost you a pretty penny, then again you do get what you pay for and can be customized to meet just about EVERY possible need through available additional parts.

Unless you have a very specific need or desire to have a full tower my recommendation for Air Cooling would be Silverstones Fortress (all aluminum, subdued look, called FT for short) or Raven line-up (mixed material, more drastic in appearance, called RV for short).  They are basically the same thing from an internal perspective and only differ slightly in outer appearance and construction material, which of course comes back to price as well.  They work of a direct air flow concept where by the "wind tunnel" never has to bend like in normal tower setups.  The 180mm fans that come with them are top of the line too and pretty quiet for the most part.

Caselabs: http://www.caselabs.net/

Lian-Li: http://www.lian-li.com/en/products/#42/1/list

Silverstone: http://www.silverstonetek.com/product_case.php?tno=0&case=c_tower&area=en

  Baratuk

Novice Member

Joined: 4/22/05
Posts: 14

7/26/13 5:47:47 PM#7

This case is really good, lots of room, nice air flow with big fans. Only draw back is it can get dusty in it faster than a normal case.

 

Also, this is a link to tigerdirect, you might be able to find it cheaper in other places.

 

 

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=4146085&CatId=1510

  Jockan

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/03/08
Posts: 4071

7/26/13 5:56:02 PM#8

My current rig is the first full tower build I have done and I love it. Maximum air flow and just looks beastly. My case is related  to the one you linked.

 

http://www.coolermaster-usa.com/product.php?product_id=3054&product_name=CM

 


  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  7/27/13 11:15:02 PM#9
Originally posted by Mannish

My current rig is the first full tower build I have done and I love it. Maximum air flow and just looks beastly. My case is related  to the one you linked.

 

http://www.coolermaster-usa.com/product.php?product_id=3054&product_name=CM

 

Yeah I actually prefer black also so I've been looking at the Trooper too. The main difference with the Stryker that has me leanig that way is the extra "bulge" on the right hand panel that gives you a bit more room for the cables. Either one is great though. Love the hot-swapable 2.5" drive slot, fan controller, that lovely storage box at the bottom front and all the attention to detail.

 

I'm curious. Did you move the HD cage fans to the more conventional front to push air at the GPU or left them on the side for tidier cabling? 

 

And the rest of you... thanks for all the suggestions. I've spent several hours following your links and reading reviews :)

  miguksaram

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/29/03
Posts: 817

7/28/13 12:36:19 AM#10

If you seem set on the CM Storm Stryker or Trooper I'd highly suggest you check on Tiny Tom Logans review of each and his comparison vidoes on youtube.  He's a very reputable and thorough reviewer from Great Britain who typically gets first hands on review of hardware within Europe because of it.  The vidoes are LONG but that is only because he is raw (for a computer hardware reviewer that is) and tends to touch a MANY areas other reviewers leave out.  Well worth your time as he actually chose the Storm Stryker for a sentimental/tribute build OVER what some would have considered a higher quality Caselabs case and explains why.  That build in question and the video related to it is titled "Orca".

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDDovw39nTw

  Cleffy

Elite Member

Joined: 5/09/04
Posts: 5452

7/28/13 1:33:02 AM#11
If you don't have much of a budget, get a Rosewill case. They are cheap and amazing.
  Jockan

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/03/08
Posts: 4071

7/28/13 6:56:54 AM#12
Originally posted by Iselin
Originally posted by Mannish

My current rig is the first full tower build I have done and I love it. Maximum air flow and just looks beastly. My case is related  to the one you linked.

 

http://www.coolermaster-usa.com/product.php?product_id=3054&product_name=CM

 

Yeah I actually prefer black also so I've been looking at the Trooper too. The main difference with the Stryker that has me leanig that way is the extra "bulge" on the right hand panel that gives you a bit more room for the cables. Either one is great though. Love the hot-swapable 2.5" drive slot, fan controller, that lovely storage box at the bottom front and all the attention to detail.

 

I'm curious. Did you move the HD cage fans to the more conventional front to push air at the GPU or left them on the side for tidier cabling? 

 

And the rest of you... thanks for all the suggestions. I've spent several hours following your links and reading reviews :)

 

I left the HD Cage fans on the side. Never had a problem with air flow so I did not change them.


  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  7/28/13 11:26:11 AM#13
Originally posted by miguksaram

If you seem set on the CM Storm Stryker or Trooper I'd highly suggest you check on Tiny Tom Logans review of each and his comparison vidoes on youtube.  He's a very reputable and thorough reviewer from Great Britain who typically gets first hands on review of hardware within Europe because of it.  The vidoes are LONG but that is only because he is raw (for a computer hardware reviewer that is) and tends to touch a MANY areas other reviewers leave out.  Well worth your time as he actually chose the Storm Stryker for a sentimental/tribute build OVER what some would have considered a higher quality Caselabs case and explains why.  That build in question and the video related to it is titled "Orca".

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDDovw39nTw

Yeah I had already seen Tiny Tom's Stryker video review. But I hadn't seen his custom Orca job... very nice! 

I like his reviews a lot--he's very conscientious and a good communicator to boot. "Thorough" is almost an understatement for his reviews 

Another case that has caught my eye (which Tom has only "previewed" so far is the new Corsair 350D - a very interesting "double-wide" design that hides the PSU and HD bays behind the motherboard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPBVBzviVwQ&list=SPBDE3358367DB7324&index=2

Some might say I'm obsessing too much over the case decision... I think of it more as fully savoring the planning stages--especially so since most other components for my build are pretty well decided already (see below.)

 

 

Most of the rest of my build is decided: I'm keeping my ATI 7970 GPU (of course), my two SSDs, 1TB WD drive, Noctua NH-D14 cooler and Corsair 1000W PSU.

The CPU will be either the i5 4670K or i7 4770K...still pondering how much my Photoshop and Premiere work will benefit from the i7. For gaming, either is great. Whichever one it is, the plan is to OC it to ~ 4.5 Ghz rate. 

The MB will be one of the ASUs z87s...one that OC's well and easily...and, this time, looks good also.... not sure which yet. I've been using ASUS MBs almost exclusively for 20 years...I trust them.

I'll probably add another HD-- a 3TB Seagate... 18 MPixel cameras make large RAW files :)

And I'm getting new RAM - 16GB (2X 8Gb) of Corsair Vengeance pro (Noctua height compatible.) I currently have 3X 2GB on my old triple-channel ASUS.  

I originally thought of going with a sealed WC kit, probably the Corsair H100i, but the differences in performance between it and the Noctua are minimal and the Corsair is noisier too. Pretty well ruled that out.

 

  latinus

Novice Member

Joined: 1/31/08
Posts: 19

7/28/13 1:00:56 PM#14
  miguksaram

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/29/03
Posts: 817

7/28/13 8:02:28 PM#15
Originally posted by Iselin
Originally posted by miguksaram

If you seem set on the CM Storm Stryker or Trooper I'd highly suggest you check on Tiny Tom Logans review of each and his comparison vidoes on youtube.  He's a very reputable and thorough reviewer from Great Britain who typically gets first hands on review of hardware within Europe because of it.  The vidoes are LONG but that is only because he is raw (for a computer hardware reviewer that is) and tends to touch a MANY areas other reviewers leave out.  Well worth your time as he actually chose the Storm Stryker for a sentimental/tribute build OVER what some would have considered a higher quality Caselabs case and explains why.  That build in question and the video related to it is titled "Orca".

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDDovw39nTw

Yeah I had already seen Tiny Tom's Stryker video review. But I hadn't seen his custom Orca job... very nice! 

I like his reviews a lot--he's very conscientious and a good communicator to boot. "Thorough" is almost an understatement for his reviews 

Another case that has caught my eye (which Tom has only "previewed" so far is the new Corsair 350D - a very interesting "double-wide" design that hides the PSU and HD bays behind the motherboard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPBVBzviVwQ&list=SPBDE3358367DB7324&index=2

Some might say I'm obsessing too much over the case decision... I think of it more as fully savoring the planning stages--especially so since most other components for my build are pretty well decided already (see below.)

 

 

Most of the rest of my build is decided: I'm keeping my ATI 7970 GPU (of course), my two SSDs, 1TB WD drive, Noctua NH-D14 cooler and Corsair 1000W PSU.

The CPU will be either the i5 4670K or i7 4770K...still pondering how much my Photoshop and Premiere work will benefit from the i7. For gaming, either is great. Whichever one it is, the plan is to OC it to ~ 4.5 Ghz rate. 

The MB will be one of the ASUs z87s...one that OC's well and easily...and, this time, looks good also.... not sure which yet. I've been using ASUS MBs almost exclusively for 20 years...I trust them.

I'll probably add another HD-- a 3TB Seagate... 18 MPixel cameras make large RAW files :)

And I'm getting new RAM - 16GB (2X 8Gb) of Corsair Vengeance pro (Noctua height compatible.) I currently have 3X 2GB on my old triple-channel ASUS.  

I originally thought of going with a sealed WC kit, probably the Corsair H100i, but the differences in performance between it and the Noctua are minimal and the Corsair is noisier too. Pretty well ruled that out.

 

It's almost as if Corsair took a page out of Caselabs original design concept when they made the 350D.

If you check the pics under my profile you will see my wife's system which she uses for Photoshop and gaming.  Most edits are done in a matter of seconds and it's an i5.  I can't claim one way or another whether or not you will see a noticeable improvement by jumping to an i7 because we don't currently own one but would you really need something to be faster than a few seconds anyway?

  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  8/01/13 6:24:09 AM#16

Update:

 

Well I went for the Stryker after all. I saw one in person and it was nerd-love at first sight 

 

I've already started the build: got the MB, CPU, RAM, 1 SSD and my new HD in there all nicely connected and cable managed,

 

For the motherboard I didn't go with an ASUS after all (gasp! I feel like a heretic). The more I read and saw of the MSI Z87-GD65, the better it looked. It also happens to be a black MB with some red accents that actually looks great with the black and white Stryker theme.

 

I went with the i7-4770k after all. I'm not saying it's better for gaming than the i5 equivalent but I happened to be flush with my old tax return check that's been burning a hole in pocket for a while... so why not?

 

For the ram I went with 2 X 8GB of G-skill Trident X 2400-CL10.... not because of the 2400 CL10 but because I've seen several reports of it running at CL 6 or 7 and 1T @ 1866. That's what I'll be shooting for anyway. It doesn't hurt that they're black with red accents just like the MB :) And yes I know, 16 GB is also overkill for gaming. At least I'll see an occasional use for the extra ram when I'm doing some fancy edits of large 18 Mpixel RAW files in Photoshop.

 

I'll probably finish the build today or tomorrow and I'll post some photos when I'm done. It's the best looking build I've ever done... but then, I've never gone for looks before... I feel shallow :)

  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  8/05/13 5:29:46 PM#17

Been meaning to finish off this thread with some photos of the build. So here they are. It's probably the best cable management job I've done...if I say so myself :)

There are larger versions of the photos in my gallery here. Just click my name if you want to see them larger.

  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3303

8/06/13 11:08:37 AM#18

Looks very nice. Great job!

  Reizla

Elite Member

Joined: 12/09/08
Posts: 2976

MMORPGs are no longer about the mass multi-user anymore *sadly*

8/06/13 11:13:37 AM#19
Originally posted by syntax42

I am not keen on cases which position power supplies to blow hot air onto the CPU, or the GPU in the case linked above.  It just seems like an oversight in design that has been accepted for too long.  My current PC was custom-built inside of a Pelican Case.  The air flow is designed to remove heat from the case for each of the major heat-generating components.  This is achieved with only two case fans - one for the GPU and one for the CPU.  The power supply's fan points toward the exterior of the case instead of toward the CPU.  Air vent holes are large, but positioned so air flows across the intended parts to be cooled before exiting.

I used to have a case with the PSU at the top. Recently I switched to one with the PSU at the bottom (same size, both from CM) and the temperature on my GPUs has dropped by 10 degrees Celsuis when running normally (40-70% load). When performing at top load (70-100% but that hardly happens) the GPUs are still 5 degrees Celsius cooler than normal. Reason is that the PSU (though blowing warm air) makes a forced airflow upward to the back fan that takes the warm air it out...

@OP If you're planning on going SLI/XFIRE I'd advice the one you're using ;)

[EDIT]

See you already got one... Whenever you get heath problems (doubt it in your setup) turn the PSU fan up ;)

Demigoth's RPG adventures ~ My blog

AsRock 990FX Extreme3
AMD Phenom II 1090T ~3.2Ghz
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  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3700

 
OP  8/06/13 1:26:16 PM#20
Originally posted by Ridelynn

Looks very nice. Great job!

Thanks :)

 

Also running great right from the first POST. I'm just letting it burn in now before I start manually tweaking, but even so, I couldn't resist pushing the famous MSI OC Genie button just to see... it took the i7 4770k from 3.5 to 4.0 in a fraction of a second + a reboot, and since the MB and CPU are only running 12 and 14 C above ambient respectively, I'm just letting it burn in at that 14% OC... the CPU is not even cracking  60 in extreme CPU stress tests and peaks around 45 (23C over ambient) in GW2 or Rift. 

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