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post #181 of 753
Quote:
Originally Posted by mandrix View Post

That's pretty much the way I'm thinking right now and, unless or until I do something to redesign my pc area, vertically I'm less challenged for space.
Right now I'm waiting for some more pics as I'm having a hard time picturing placement of everything, and what accessories/mounts I'll need. I guess I just deal better with hands on than visualizing so pics are a big help right now. Or call me dense, or old, I don't care.
So to be clear about what will fit in the stock configuration I'll throw out what I'm looking to mount initially, will these fit, and what mounts/accessories I will need to order in addition to what comes with the case.
Maybe this will help some others as well.
2x 120x4 rads - push/pull? prefer thick low fpi rads for low speed (quiet) fans
1x 120x3 -or- 1x 120x2 rad
2x D5 pumps
1x DVD burner
2x Fan/pump controllers
2x Front Fans (or more)
1x/2x/3x Rear fans (40mm holes in rear??)
1x PSU
1x Internal fan
Knowing exactly what I need to order would help finalize costs so I know what I would be looking at $-wise.

I agree, its hard to figure out exactly what can fit until you see pictures or have a chance to play around with it yourself. I guess the one downside of a smallish company like this is you can't just run out to your local Micro Center and check out a floor model.

Anyone feel free to correct me here, but with a stock SM8, meaning no pedestal or extended top, you wouldn't be able to fit 2x 120.4 rads. At best you could get one on the top or bottom, but you have to leave space for your PSU on the opposite side, which will leave you enough room for a 120.2 rad next door. The front of the case is big enough, with a flex-bay rad mount, to put a 120.3, however, you'd be losing space for the bay devices you want - fan controllers and optical drive. Even if you nixed all your bay devices you still might have a problem fitting a 120.3 in there with the other 2 rads. Depends probably on the thickness of your rads and whether or not you do push/pull. But again pictures would help, here. And, of course, modding changes the game entirely, but even so my guess is you won't be able to fit all that hardware internally. With the pedestal, you can probably fit this all no problem, and you can always get it at a later time if you decide to start out with only some of your hardware then upgrade later. The other option would be to hold off and see what the ST10 looks like - my guess is it will be essentially an SM8 with a built in pedestal, and likely for less money than, or at least comparable to an SM8 + pedestal. It would also have a seamless look with probably more flex-bays than SM8+pedestal. I think it really depends on what you're looking for initially, space-wise
    
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post #182 of 753
I find doing a drawing helps. But you can't know it all until you place it. I'm digging into sketchup now. It's not far off from like Adobe Illustrator, I dig it.
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post #183 of 753
Quote:
Originally Posted by TigerStripes View Post

I agree, its hard to figure out exactly what can fit until you see pictures or have a chance to play around with it yourself. I guess the one downside of a smallish company like this is you can't just run out to your local Micro Center and check out a floor model.
Anyone feel free to correct me here, but with a stock SM8, meaning no pedestal or extended top, you wouldn't be able to fit 2x 120.4 rads. At best you could get one on the top or bottom, but you have to leave space for your PSU on the opposite side, which will leave you enough room for a 120.2 rad next door. The front of the case is big enough, with a flex-bay rad mount, to put a 120.3, however, you'd be losing space for the bay devices you want - fan controllers and optical drive. Even if you nixed all your bay devices you still might have a problem fitting a 120.3 in there with the other 2 rads. Depends probably on the thickness of your rads and whether or not you do push/pull. But again pictures would help, here. And, of course, modding changes the game entirely, but even so my guess is you won't be able to fit all that hardware internally. With the pedestal, you can probably fit this all no problem, and you can always get it at a later time if you decide to start out with only some of your hardware then upgrade later. The other option would be to hold off and see what the ST10 looks like - my guess is it will be essentially an SM8 with a built in pedestal, and likely for less money than, or at least comparable to an SM8 + pedestal. It would also have a seamless look with probably more flex-bays than SM8+pedestal. I think it really depends on what you're looking for initially, space-wise

That's right, I believe you can find prototype pictures in another thread with a Corsair AX1200 PSU in the bottom. You described the crux of my dilemma perfectly when it comes to rad mounting. I've also started to imagine that the ST10 might be the same way you described as well. If the ST10 does happen to end up like we've both imagined I should probably wait and find out.
post #184 of 753
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo Zuko View Post

SM8 vs SMH10/STH10: Its all about the options.
1. The pedestal/pedestal like areas more configurable on the SM8. The SMH10/STH10 are fixed with their pedestal like areas with options for a second bottom only pedestal or an extended top. While nice, depending on how you want to configure your system, a pedestal like area may go mostly unused due to its location (which only adds bulk). Or you may have longer tubing runs to reach the scattered rads.
Wouldn't it be so much better if you could centralize all the rads with short tubing runs and avoid the mobo section?? While maintaining positive pressure with room for expansion (without running tubing all over)?? While maximizing the case real estate (no wasted sections)?? While you can make the STH10 or especially the SMH10 work like this (with a pedestal on bottom, no wasted space up top), I find the SM8 more ideal due to its unique pedestal versatility.
The SM8 lets you put a pedestal on top, a pedestal on the bottom, two pedestals on top, two pedestals on bottom, all options with or without an extended top. This works far better for options towards keeping the rads higher up and centralize, without wasting a pedestal like area below, so that the heat can rise straight out of the case. You can place the pedestal up top, then draw air in threw dual rads at the upper sides, then put a third 480 rad in the SM8's upper PSU area (a SM8 unique option) blowing up threw the top mounted pedestal towards a vented top. So now you have a massive 3x480 rad capacity, the ability to maintain positive pressure, a centralized rad system with short tubing runs, and a heat rising mobo avoiding rad exhaust path. Stack another top mounted pedestal to add even more rad space while maintaining all these benifits and the exhaust "chimney". And best of all you don't have to waste a bottom pedestal like area, so as to maximize the case real estate. Or you could waste some space by using...
2. A STH10 with 4 PSU slots. That's at least 2-3 too many for most people. I won't knock the choice of upper or lower, but dual side by side PSUs just wastes space unless you really really need that power. Which also brings me to...
3. The wasted space on the STH10/SMH10, if you don't NEED it, just makes for a needlessly bigger case. Bigger than EATX is great... if you need it, most will not. 560 (4x140) rad support seems neat, until you realize it takes up a ton of space and it is still somewhat a 120mm standard world anyway with added 140mm options. For example, the new XSPC AX rads are 120mm only, they look awesome, but they don't come in a 560. The ever popular Gentle Typhoon AP-15 fans only come in 120mm, as do a lot of the best fan options. I sure don't see them rushing out a 140mm option. Sure you can make 140mm work just fine, and there are good options out there, but when you are at three or four 480 (4x120) rads, you have the cooling power need for sure already. You might be limiting your rad/fan options. But even if you make the jump to 140mm fans for whatever reason, and the fans you find are nice, do you really need the space hogging 560 support thusted upon you by the STH10/SM10? The SM8 will do 420 (3x140) options and maintain a more reasonable size. Speaking of (or is that posting of??) options...
4. The smaller touches/options on the SM8 are super nice. If you add a pedestal to a SMH10/STH10, what do you get? No more Flexbays and more (MORE!!) PSU slots. Holly ****!! Thats 6 PSU bays. Whaaatt!? Whereas if you add a SM8 pedestal, you get a another 3 Flexbays (which is 300% more than the competition!! JK) and a rear positioned 140mm fan mount (far more useful than ANOTHER PSU slot). Then on top of all this, the SM8 has built in 480 support in more than one area (or 420 support if you must), a reversable mobo side / window side option, a symmetrical looking row of Flexbays (somehow that just looks a ton better to me vs off centered), and you can see my awesome Corsair AX1200i PSU sticker better on the SM8 (which is a small thing, but I like it better - a PSU in the more traditional orientation)... And while we are on things I like that should hardly matter (but they SO do)...
5. Merlin is hands down a better name than Magnum. The wand is mightier than the gun. A small Merlin logo instead of the standard CaseLabs one would have been cool biggrin.gif
Well these are the reasons I want a Merlin SM8 over the STH10/SMH10 anyway. YMMV. Not putting down the SMH10/STH10, just noting reasons why Merlin might be the better option in some cases.

One point that is being missed on the STH10 (and the other cases) is there was never any intention to mount more than 2 PSU's (except possibly the TX10-D - but that's self explanatory tongue.gif ). A common design feature on our cases is a shared PSU/Radiator bay. Most people use only one PSU, even on the STH10, but that leaves them 3 full length radiator bays. It's all about build flexibility.

Yes, the STH10 and SMH10 cases are big, they are meant to be as are the other Magnum cases (my wife came up with that name for the M8 - no idea what her inspiration was tongue.gif ) . They are too big for a typical gamer's rig, but really shine when you want an all-out showcase rig. Others simply want something that will stop people in their tracks and say "What's that!" Merlin was designed for a little less overkill and of course, we upped the ante with a few new tricks wink.gif Don't overlook the M8 though. It's actually quite compact for what's capable of (dual PSU's or 3x360 + 1x 240 radiators, or 24 HDD mounts). It's also beastly strong - we put 500 lbs on it when we originally tested the frame design - try that with your stamped out case from China wink.gif

At the end of the day, it all about having choices. I don't think there is anyone else out there that offers more. Hopefully we'll have enough to satisfy most of you biggrin.gif
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post #185 of 753
Thread Starter 
Here are some links to product documentation for Merlin:

Merlin Owner's Manual and Accessory Guide

Merlin SM8 Assembly Manual

They are draft copies and will be updated shortly, but I think it will help explain the options available and how they might be used. The assembly manual will give you a better understanding of how the case is constructed, even if you plan to receive it fully assembled.

Hope it helps smile.gif
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post #186 of 753
Quote:
Originally Posted by TigerStripes View Post

I agree, its hard to figure out exactly what can fit until you see pictures or have a chance to play around with it yourself. I guess the one downside of a smallish company like this is you can't just run out to your local Micro Center and check out a floor model.
Anyone feel free to correct me here, but with a stock SM8, meaning no pedestal or extended top, you wouldn't be able to fit 2x 120.4 rads. At best you could get one on the top or bottom, but you have to leave space for your PSU on the opposite side, which will leave you enough room for a 120.2 rad next door. The front of the case is big enough, with a flex-bay rad mount, to put a 120.3, however, you'd be losing space for the bay devices you want - fan controllers and optical drive. Even if you nixed all your bay devices you still might have a problem fitting a 120.3 in there with the other 2 rads. Depends probably on the thickness of your rads and whether or not you do push/pull. But again pictures would help, here. And, of course, modding changes the game entirely, but even so my guess is you won't be able to fit all that hardware internally. With the pedestal, you can probably fit this all no problem, and you can always get it at a later time if you decide to start out with only some of your hardware then upgrade later. The other option would be to hold off and see what the ST10 looks like - my guess is it will be essentially an SM8 with a built in pedestal, and likely for less money than, or at least comparable to an SM8 + pedestal. It would also have a seamless look with probably more flex-bays than SM8+pedestal. I think it really depends on what you're looking for initially, space-wise

You can mount the PSU to the front of the case, like how the PSU is mounted in a FT02 or vertical like the Lian Li V354....That would be an interesting mod I think. This will leave room for rads top and bottom, and still leaving room for a few flex bays.

Did I really just suggest a crazy mod? wink.gif

I'm sure Caselabs or Home Depot has a few parts for our imaginations to make it possible.
Edited by WorldExclusive - 9/18/12 at 4:16pm
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post #187 of 753
Crazy... Like a fox!!!

JK biggrin.gif
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post #188 of 753
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo Zuko View Post

Crazy... Like a fox!!!
JK biggrin.gif

lol

There's also plenty of room on the mobo wall.
If mounted on the mobo wall, you can keep all of the flex bays.

Example:

NU3zH.png
Edited by WorldExclusive - 9/18/12 at 4:29pm
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post #189 of 753
Thanks everyone. I really want a right side window, and that is what attracts me to the SM8 so much. I will look over the assembly manual tomorrow to get a better feel for what I can do. I'm not above a little modding, but it's looking like a pedestal would be needed for me at some point.
I'm already near the limitations for my Switch and I've decided I don't want to try and cram anything else in it at this point.
---

Did I not see in this thread a 120mm top available for the SM8? Or was I tripping? I can't find any mention of a top for the SM8 on the web site, but maybe I'm blind?
I was thinking 120.4 push/pull with the top fans possibly on the top of the case but covered.
Edited by mandrix - 9/18/12 at 6:19pm
post #190 of 753
Just go to the order page - http://www.caselabs-store.com/merlin-sm8/

You have a choice of ventilated, solid, or a 120mm ventilated extended top. Also, note the choice of Orientation: standard or reverse - so not only does CL ship the SM8 assembled, but will set it up as r-atx or l-atx.
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