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Old December 16, 2011, 05:30 PM
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Heh... it's like being a bloody kid at christmas.... I soooooooooo much wanna crack open that box and start the build proper, but all I get to do is play around the edges with small projects..... ;)
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Old December 19, 2011, 02:16 PM
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I had hoped to get the rad tricked out in fans tonight, but found that unlike my old(er) swiftech and PA's, the EK rads use M3 screws rather than 6/32. Not a biggie, and if I really wanted to, I could probably tap out the screw holes if I had to, but since the EK ships with 16 M3 screws it just means that I've got to paint up the M3 screws rather than using the 6/32 screws I was ready to go with tonight.
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Old December 20, 2011, 07:09 PM
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Good news for me... my better half (otherwise know as she-who-must-be-obeyed.... ;) ) has reclassified the case and PSU as surplus gifts, not required under the tree (we'll just call them PC hardware I bought for myself after selling off some older kit I guess.... :) ) and as such I got a chance to unbox the beast to get some pics, and to start planning where I want to put the pump and res. Not sure how much I'll be able to get done between now and Christmas, but rest assured I'll get some of it done (I promise to take it fairly slow so that I don't finish the whole thing off in an evening without any pics being taken). Without any further adieu, here's the latest pics of the case..........









As has been suggested by one of the other staff members, in spite of the amount of plastic, this case feels pretty solid. I'm quite pleased with what appears (from the outside anywise) to be fairly high build quality.

The plastic doesn't feel cheap, the black mesh (IMO) looks great, and (as evidenced by the closup of the top control panel) they've even managed to fit in a little bit of brushed aluminum (even if it's only a veneer.... ;) ). Everything also seems to fit together well.







It's been a while since I required a lock and key for one of my rigs, and while it's not a new idea, having a lock for both the HDD bays and the side door fits the theme pretty well. Pictured beside the locking mechanism is the handle for the internal fan baffles which can be used to direct the flow of air from the side fan. Using spring loaded contacts for the side fan is (IMO) a brilliant idea which allows the door to swing open on a hinge, and not only removes the hassle of finding an appropriate MB fan header, but also makes it possible to remove that door all together for easy access to the internal hardware.







A quick peek with the left and right panels off, as well as a view forward and upwards (with the fan) where the rad will be going. Not sure how well you can make it out in the images, but the joint between the front case/HDD mounts and the main motherboard area is at a 45 degree angle. I'd hoped to mount my res to that using a standoff which would put it closer to the center of the case (both for looks and for airflow). Not sure if that's going to work or not, but no matter what I end up doing, it looks like I'll be drilling a few holes. Interesting to note the power connections for the HDDs. Having a single connection for power going to all of the HDD / SDDs will certainly clean up a fair bit of clutter.







The top (rear) grill is secured by a latch which is released by a button on the rear (not very obvious unless you're looking for it, or pressing things to see what happens). As you can see, there's tons of room for a full 2X 120mm rad, but fitting in a 3X rad would require some fairly hefty mods to the top of the case... I'm not saying it couldn't be done, but IMO if a 240mm isn't enough, then there's room for a high efficiency 120mm rad at the bottom forward of the PSU. (I'll be double checking fit there with a single PA rad.).

Anywise... that's about all for now, I'll post up more as I get them.
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Old December 20, 2011, 09:29 PM
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Trade ya my MK-1 for it :D
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Old December 21, 2011, 01:51 AM
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Heh... lemmee think about it..... nah, thanks for the offer, but I think I'll pass. :)

That said... the Chaser looks like a great case.
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Old December 21, 2011, 06:40 PM
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As I mentioned in the intro, a big part of why I do worklogs is to show budding enthusiasts how easy much of this stuff is. With that in mind, I'm going to go off onto a bit of a tangent before getting around to installing the top mount rad. (Rest assured, the pics of the rad install are just beyond the fringe..... ;) ).







So... I've opened the rad box and this warning fell out.... what's it all about, and WTH (eck of course..... ;) ) do I do about it?






Here's the deal.... in order to allow for mounting of different depth of fans (higher CFM fans are typically much deeper than standard fans) Rad manufacturers have been kind enough to include different lengths of screws. That's great when we're paying attention, but if we're not paying attention there's a chance we might use a screw that's too long and thus puncture the rad's water channels. This particular rad ships with enough hardware to safely mount either 2 standard depth fans or 2 high CFM (deeper) fans. If we want to do a push/pull with standard fans we're going to have to shorten the longer screws, and if we want to use high CFM fans, we're going to have to spring for another 8 longer mounting screws.






Here's a closeup example of what I'm talking about.... the thread on the left is just started, and already we can see that there's an awful lot of thread exposed... when we thread it in so that it's just above the rad's water channels, we can see that there's still a lot of thread exposed. Going any further might result in puncturing the water channels and turning the rad into scrap metal (the manu will likely not RMA for this kind of damage).







Ok, so now that we understand what the problem is, how do we cut the longer screws down to size? The method most folks have access to is to cut them with a dremmel (rotary) tool, but I personally prefer to use the screw cutting feature included on many wire strippers. IMO, it offers a better quality cut, and really... looking at a pile of 20+ screws which need to be cut down with a rotary tool gets a bit tiring after a while.

I thought I was going to have to forego the screw cutter as my main wire stripping pliers only do SAE measurements (swiftech rads use 6/32 threads), but fortunately found that this cheepo one had metric thread cutters. This worked for the 8 screws I needed to cut, but I'm not sure how many more clean cuts I'd get out of it. The tool is of really poor quality, and I think I'll keep my eyes open for a decent metric one.






So... now that we've gone to all that trouble, the last step is to choose the longest screw of the one's we've just cut and verify that it's been cut short enough... if that one fits then we know the rest will be fine. This one could be a lot shorter, but it's fully threaded in, and isn't touching the water channels so we're good.


Now that we've got that out of the way, let's get on with the rest of the Rad install.... ;)






First step is to remove the top fan. It's secured with 4 standard fan screws which can all be accessed from the top down after removing the upper fan grill. You'll see it once the rad is installed, but if I could ask for anything it'd be for a blanking plate to go over the open fan radius that won't be covered by the rad. Seeing this, I guess it's safe to say that this case doesn't depend on positive pressure air flow.






Lower fans are easy to install outside of the case. We'll have to see how well the enamel paint holds up... I just painted right over the chromed fan grills without any prep at all.

Installation up top for a push/pull setup is a lot easier once you stand back to look at what you're doing... ;0 At first I was trying to hold up the rad+loose fan from the inside while lining up a screw with the mounting hole(s) from the top. Trying to get the screw thread started was being a bit of a pain, and I was concerned that a single screw might strip while I tried to get the others lined up.........

Stepping back from the job I noticed that the rad only mounted to the case using the outer 4 screws... armed with this knowledge it was a lot easier to secure the top fans with the 4 middle screws while the rad was sitting on the tabletop. Lining up the mounting screws through the case was a breeze once that was done. :)






Once the top grill is installed, I'm glad to see that there's still a little bit of red blade visible through the top. I love the black theme, but there still needs to be a little bit of contrast to highlight it.







So there we are. That's actually a pretty easy 2X 120MM topmount rad install with absolutely no modding required. Some folks have questioned the small 1/2 height window, but it looks like it's going to frame the WC perfectly (the EK logo currently figures prominently... ;) ), and it still allows for a full height directable airflow side fan.

I'm not sure what's next up, I suspect I'll get the PSU installed just to give me an idea of what position the res and pump are going to take up in the case. I've got an idea in my head about how I want to mount the res, but we'll have to see how well that's going to fit.

Anywise... that's all for now, and again, thanks a lot for looking!


Edit: Hrmmmmmm...... might have just found the first irksome issue with this case.... looks like at the very least I'm going to have to remove the lower fans if not the entire rad in order to get the motherboard standoff screws installed. Not quite as push/pull friendly as the Cosmos S was (standard depth fans fit on top outside of the internal motherboard area), and it has yet to be seen if there are any issues WRT clearance with the CPU block.

Also looking at the possibility of fitting in a 360 rad if a person really wanted to... I suppose it could be mounted using the first two fans in push/pull config. The extra 120mm should overhang into the 5 1/4 bays and would only require slight work on a few cables that are stored in there. A lower fan could be installed on the forward portion of the rad, and would more than likely have no problems exhausting out the top through the uncovered holes left by the radius of the fan. It wouldn't be possible to use a top push/pull fan without cutting the case (and it might be a major pain to get in there anywise) as it would be tight against the top of the case without any real exhaust.



edit #2: On the off chance that anybody from TT might actually get out to the internets to see what folks are saying about their cases I'd like to make a suggestion. Even before I've gotten to looking at what kind of clearance I'm going to have with a push/pull setup, I've got an idea for an aftermarket add-on......

Since the upper fan grill is completely removable, how about a replacement grill which incorporates a raised portion to accomodate externally mounted fans? I know I'd pay extra for one in order to clean up any possible clearance issues, and, like a windowed case side mod, only folks who wanted one would be hit with the extra costs, and they in return would end up with an even more unique case.
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Last edited by sswilson; December 21, 2011 at 08:16 PM.
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old December 21, 2011, 07:38 PM
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Thanks for the rad mount shots. I'm thinking a triple would mount ok and there looks to be an exhaust grille over the drive bays that would allow some exhaust for the third fan. Gives me some ideas anyways. We'll see what the Boxing Day sale brings.
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Old December 21, 2011, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarJ View Post
Thanks for the rad mount shots. I'm thinking a triple would mount ok and there looks to be an exhaust grille over the drive bays that would allow some exhaust for the third fan. Gives me some ideas anyways. We'll see what the Boxing Day sale brings.





This is probably the best image you're going to get on where the overhang of a 360 rad would end up (It's looking up, front to the right). As you can see, the "fan grill" at the top front is merely window dressing... there is no exhaust up through it from the internal 5 1/4 bays, and there are a few cables that you might have to move a bit.

That said... as I mentioned, it would probably be possible to mount a lower fan, and that fan should have no problems exhausting out of the holes on either side of the 2 "pull" fans.
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Old December 21, 2011, 07:51 PM
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The cheeky buggers! Well, that makes a huge differerence in airflow. Nothing a dremel wouldn't fix, but I hate cutting up a brand new case.

Is there room to mount a single rad at the rear with the double in place?
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Old December 21, 2011, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarJ View Post
The cheeky buggers! Well, that makes a huge differerence in airflow. Nothing a dremel wouldn't fix, but I hate cutting up a brand new case.

Is there room to mount a single rad at the rear with the double in place?
I could make a guestimate, but if you want an actual fit (I've got a single PA in the Cosmos S) attempt it'll have to come after I've disassembled the WC loop in the Cosmos. A single would definately fit forward of the PSU, and there's a bottom fan mount just for that purpose.
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