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Old February 28, 2017, 08:00 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: 5105' N 11405' W
Posts: 462

My System Specs

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It's been a while since my OP but I finally decided on and bought a case just this past week.

I did end up getting the Fractal Design Define R5. Managed to get a price beat on it which brought the price down considerably. At regular retail I'd say there are probably better options but I was getting bored continuing the search.

Overall the Define is good. Size is better than I expected and it freed up significant desk space compared to the Raven. This I am extremely happy about. Since the case has only two 5.25" bays I sacrificed one DVD writer and opted to throw in the Bluray/DVD writer and a fan/power monitor. Everything else guts-wise fit inside the case no problems, including the ASUS GTX1070. I decided to place my old Corsair H70 onto the front intake mount which makes the hoses fairly tight. I plan to get a newer cpu cooler (H110 maybe?) that will have slightly longer coupled hoses. In order to use the CPU cooler the top 5x HDD mount assembly had to be removed. This no problem since the 3x HDD mount was adequate for the 3.5" drives and my two 2.5" SSDs mounted in the included brackets on the backside of the mobo mounting plate. Two things I'd like to see with a future update of this case: 1. more tool-less, and, 2. tempered glass window.

If anyone is considering a mid-tower I highly recommend this one (on sale).

Oh and (not so)pro-tip: when moving mobo and SATA connected drives ensure the cables get reconnected to their original mobo ports. Otherwise boot errors and other headaches could result. I should've wrote things down but I figured BIOS/Win10 would sort things out automagically. But...nope.
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System Spec Peripherals: Corsair H115i Pro Platinum | Corsair K70 MK.2 SE kb | Logitech G703 mouse | Kanto YU4 speakers | Drobo FS 6.5TB | Synology DS1515+ 15TB
Laptops: Asus G74SX-DH71 | Asus G752VY | Surface Pro 4 Core i7/256GB


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  #12 (permalink)  
Old March 1, 2017, 01:11 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 642
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You can get a more compact ATX minimalist case if you forgo the front toolless drive cage and settle with a 2x3.5" drive cage in the bottom within the PSU shroud. Not only can you go external with the 5.25" drive but the HDD too.

From biggest to smallest, Corsair 400C, Fractal Design Define C and Jonsbo U4 are my recommendations. Prices are all lower than your budget so I would replace the fans with better/quieter ones.
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case , cooling , raven , rv01 , upgrade

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