SFF/LAN rig: short build log
Nothing special, just wanted to share my SFF build... Been on the road for months, so I took the day yesterday to build this bad boy. I've been focused on an SR-2 build, but with a LAN party around the corner, I figured it was time to get my spare parts toss them into an SFF case. Sure, I had to run some ghetto mods on the case to get and 11.5" card to fit in a 12" case, but it turned out really well as it performs like a champ and stays relatively cool.
SilverStone SG-03F w/ SilverStone 120mm fans
EVGA x58 Micro
Intel Core i7 920 @ 4.2 GHz w/ ECO CoolIT
12GB Corsair Dominator DDR3-2000
240GB OCZ Revodrive x2
Sapphire 5970 w/ Accelero cooler
NZXT Sentry 2 fan controller
I used a 114mm steel bit to cut the hole in the top of the case. Like any SFF build, heat is always the biggest issue. By cutting out a blow hole, my temps dropped signifcantly (~25 degrees on average). I simply covered it up using the stock SilverStone fan cover that comes with the case. IMHO, Silverstone would be wise to sell this case with the cut out already in place... it does make fitment of a ROM drive tight, but I was able to get one installed and running easily (however, I removed it for a fan controller instead).
Getting the video card to fit was a bitch! I had to use a dremmel to cut out a notch in the case, but I also had to cut the plastic surround used to hold the intake fans in place. I did get lucky though, as the Accelero cooler actually touches both the case and plastic surround, helping to support the weight of the card.
As it's now a 3-slot card, I had to move it to the bottom of the case so that I can use the RevoDrive in the other PCI-e slot. For those familiar with the case, HDDs are installed on the bottom of the case, so with the holes provided to cool the HDDs, I am able to get great air flow to the card.
The finished product is clean and simple. It runs any game I can through at it while I continue to work on my other rigs :) I know the SG-03 might not appeal to everyone cosmetically, but I've built many LAN rigs, and this case (with the blow hole) offers the best cooling of any SFF case I've ever used.
It's either i'm crazy or I don't see a power supply....lol. Quite the little powerhouse though! Nice work cramming it all in there!
Why not have chosen the SG-03 with the carry handle? I built a rig for a customer with that case for travel, and the handle was no gimmick.
The PSU is mounted in the rectangular opening you see in this pic:
The one with the handle is the SG-04 - I own one as well and you're right, the handle is the real deal and very useful. However, the "open" front panel of the SG-03 gave me much better cooling. Plus, the front door of the 04 model prevented me from cramming in the 5970.
The cooler on the video card touches the grill on the front of the case :punk:
Got it - I saw the GPU lenght after posting...
Very nice little build. I actually considered using this same case but decided otherwise because of the PSU mounting position.
How do you like the NZXT Sentry 2? I have the same controller still sittin in the box.
As for the Sentry 2, I only bought it cause it was on the shelf at the store and has pretty colours. I didn't hook up any sensors, and only one fan (the exhaust fan @ 100%) is plugged into it. So frankly, I'm not really in a position to critique it </honesty>
I dig it. I've been trying to find one of those mobos for a while but haven't had much luck.
I am pretty sure you can find those mobo's directly from EVGA's site.
The mobo is simply boss -- best mATX board I've ever owned: feature rich, 2x 16 pcie and OC's as easily and stable as any board I've ever used.
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