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Looking to make more room for future builds

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
So, either my video card or mother board is in the process of dying and I'm trying to come up with different options for cases that would be able to support my future builds. My current case is an Antec P180, which for the most part has done it's job, albet having cramped spacing for larger cards like my video card, which could have ultimately caused the problem I'm having now. As part of the replacement process I am considering several different cases for my future builds, which I will attempt to explain my reasons for bellow.

The cases I'm considering are:
Cooler Master Cosmos II
Caselabs Mercury S8
Most of the Caselabs Magnum Line

One thing I would like to mention about all of the cases I am considering, because of the risk of frying something, I am playing it safe and going with heatsinks and air cooling only, that said, optimum airflow is going to be something I will try to be paying attention to with anything I would end up with.

Starting with the Cosmos, the very first thing I liked about this case when I first saw it was the hinged side doors and the generous space to work inside, and as many hard drive bays as I would want in an ideal raid setup, including two hotswap bays that would be used for a pair of raid 1 SSDs for handling the operating system and a potential for a raid 10 setup of platter drives for bulk storage.

For the most part, the caselabs cases would serve the same purpose, with the exception of the TX10-D. The purpose for this monster would be somewhat different than just simply future-proofing for any subsequent builds, in addition do that, I would also be including a legacy system for older games that rely on dos or windows 95 in a native environment, rather than using emulators. This case would also allow me the option to add a server rack for hosting online play.
For single system setups, part of me is drawn to the more cubical form factors of the Mercury S8 and the Magnum TH10A because of the relatively compact design, while retaining the kind of flexibility I would want for future builds that the standard towers have.

So what all of this boils down to is, would it be better to get a large beast like the TX10 and fill it up with three systems, or separate it out into smaller cases? If the latter turns out to be more viable, the legacy system would remain in it's original case.
post #2 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elanachan View Post

So, either my video card or mother board is in the process of dying and I'm trying to come up with different options for cases that would be able to support my future builds. My current case is an Antec P180, which for the most part has done it's job, albet having cramped spacing for larger cards like my video card, which could have ultimately caused the problem I'm having now. As part of the replacement process I am considering several different cases for my future builds, which I will attempt to explain my reasons for bellow.

The cases I'm considering are:
Cooler Master Cosmos II
Caselabs Mercury S8
Most of the Caselabs Magnum Line

One thing I would like to mention about all of the cases I am considering, because of the risk of frying something, I am playing it safe and going with heatsinks and air cooling only, that said, optimum airflow is going to be something I will try to be paying attention to with anything I would end up with.

Starting with the Cosmos, the very first thing I liked about this case when I first saw it was the hinged side doors and the generous space to work inside, and as many hard drive bays as I would want in an ideal raid setup, including two hotswap bays that would be used for a pair of raid 1 SSDs for handling the operating system and a potential for a raid 10 setup of platter drives for bulk storage.

For the most part, the caselabs cases would serve the same purpose, with the exception of the TX10-D. The purpose for this monster would be somewhat different than just simply future-proofing for any subsequent builds, in addition do that, I would also be including a legacy system for older games that rely on dos or windows 95 in a native environment, rather than using emulators. This case would also allow me the option to add a server rack for hosting online play.
For single system setups, part of me is drawn to the more cubical form factors of the Mercury S8 and the Magnum TH10A because of the relatively compact design, while retaining the kind of flexibility I would want for future builds that the standard towers have.

So what all of this boils down to is, would it be better to get a large beast like the TX10 and fill it up with three systems, or separate it out into smaller cases? If the latter turns out to be more viable, the legacy system would remain in it's original case.
Definitely go for a CaseLabs. They have arguably the most space of any case in the industry, let alone the construction is second to none.
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 3770K ASUS Sabertooth Z77 EVGA Geforce GTX 980 Ti Classified Corsair Dominator Platinum 2133ghz 8gb 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Corsair Dominator Platinum 2133ghz 8gb Samsung EVO  Seagate Fully custom water cooled 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 10 Professional LG 34UC97 Poker 2 EVGA G2 1300 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 550D Razer Ouroboros Elite Ambidextrous Gaming Mouse Razer Scarab Turtle Beach XP400 
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Monster Inspiration Noise Canceling  Denon AVR-1613 Home Theater Receiver Razer Orbweaver Stealth Edition Aquacomputer Aquaero 6 XT 
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PC Face
(20 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 3770K ASUS Sabertooth Z77 EVGA Geforce GTX 980 Ti Classified Corsair Dominator Platinum 2133ghz 8gb 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Corsair Dominator Platinum 2133ghz 8gb Samsung EVO  Seagate Fully custom water cooled 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 10 Professional LG 34UC97 Poker 2 EVGA G2 1300 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 550D Razer Ouroboros Elite Ambidextrous Gaming Mouse Razer Scarab Turtle Beach XP400 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Monster Inspiration Noise Canceling  Denon AVR-1613 Home Theater Receiver Razer Orbweaver Stealth Edition Aquacomputer Aquaero 6 XT 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
I am still looking to narrow down the selection of cases for what I want to do. When it comes down to it, I have two potential setups that I would want to go with, but I would only pick one of them.

The first idea is to build a single self contained system that would be used for gaming, work, and mass storage, making use of multiple RAID arrays. If I did this, the smallest cases from caselabs that could house such a system are the Mercury S8 or the Magnum SMA8. The current setup I am envisioning includes the use of the following components:

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-Z170X-Gaming G1 (rev. 1.0) LGA 1151 Intel Z170 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 USB 3.0 Extended ATX Intel Motherboard
Processor: Intel Core i7-6700K
DDR4 RAM: Probably 2666 or 2400 with a goal of filling out the motherboard max of 64GB in a 4x16 arrangement.
Two M.2 SSDs in RAID 1 for the operating system.
Three SATA Express SSDs for game storage.
One Bluray read/write optical drive.
One DVD read/write optical drive.
Two Nvidia graphics cards, GTX 960 or higher.
One spot will be reserved on the motherboard for a backup wireless card, in the event the onboard wireless fails.

If I make a stand alone system, the following components will also be included in the build:
Power supply minimum: 1300W
Up to two 12 port sata RAID arrays filled in with platter drives for mass storage.

If I decide to go the TX10 route, the 12 drive RAID arrays will likely be eliminated from the primary system in favor of moving the storage onto a server rack of up to 4U in size, which would be mounted to the bottom of the case. This would also likely make the power demands on the primary system less extreme, as the 1300W minimum I came up with was with the idea that I may eventually be playing with two way SLI titan x equivalents in addition to the two 12 drive raid arrays.

The TX10 option would also be the new home to what I am calling a legacy system. This system would be the transplanted hardware of an older computer for playing older games in their native environment. For the sake of this discussion, it will likely be a Windows 95/98 era sony VAIO that would be transplanted into the other side of the case from the primary setup, which would be intended for use with dos games NOT compatible with dosbox, as well as windows 9x games that have not worked sense windows XP was released, civilization 2 being an example of one of these games.

At the time of writing this, I am leaning in favor of going with the S8 for a single system setup. If I do this, I may still consider looking into getting just the pedestal for the TX10 for use as a mini server rack in the event that I have everything in three separate smaller cases instead of one huge one. With a single system setup, the vaio hardware would remain in it's original case.

One of the biggest drawbacks I can see for the TX10 is that I would most certainly be required to dismantle it if I were to ever move, as it would be too heavy for me to move all in one piece. If I went with this option, I would be looking for a way to make some sort of enclosure for the removable motherboard trays for use during transport between dwellings.

I am looking for input on which direction would make the most sense, as I can see the benefits and drawbacks of both methods of doing things. Also, because this setup would be housed in my bedroom, I am also trying to figure out which setup would have less noise and heat output.

As a final note, for the primary system, I am considering the notion of trying some form of liquid cooling, especially knowing that I would be required to overclock the 6700K in order to use the faster ram types with the motherboard I would be using. If I did this, I am considering both an all in one unit for the CPU, or trying a more filled out liquid cooling system that includes both the CPU and the built-in waterblock on the motherboard itself. If I did this, incorporating the GPUs into the liquid cooling system may be an option down the line, but not until I invest in cards beyond my current GTX 960.
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