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Old 01-09-2019, 09:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Best Airflow Mini-ITX case?

Originally I wanted to build a Pelican-case PC to use when on-location or on-set. Though, modding an expensive Pelican case, that will still likely prove to have very poor thermals doesn't seem worth my time.

Thus, I am planning out a mini-ITX build. I'm trying to find the smallest case possible that can fit a full-size GPU. I plan to use an AIO cooler, and not looking to overclock. I am going to transport the case in a pelican case so the smaller the better. I'm okay lugging a semi-bulky case to a location, it's not like I expect to roll up to Starbucks to work on my quick-books. I've always had poor experiences with "high end" laptops and they cool poorly for real work anyway.

There's so many great mini-ITX cases on the market, but it can be tough to find any info about thermals when they only have a few reviews.

Thanks!

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Old 01-09-2019, 10:10 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by EliteGamer83 View Post
Originally I wanted to build a Pelican-case PC to use when on-location or on-set. Though, modding an expensive Pelican case, that will still likely prove to have very poor thermals doesn't seem worth my time.

Thus, I am planning out a mini-ITX build. I'm trying to find the smallest case possible that can fit a full-size GPU. I plan to use an AIO cooler, and not looking to overclock. I am going to transport the case in a pelican case so the smaller the better. I'm okay lugging a semi-bulky case to a location, it's not like I expect to roll up to Starbucks to work on my quick-books. I've always had poor experiences with "high end" laptops and they cool poorly for real work anyway.

There's so many great mini-ITX cases on the market, but it can be tough to find any info about thermals when they only have a few reviews.

Thanks!
Judging by your references to taking it to a job, the Pelican case for protection while traveling (possible airplane or van loaded with gear) full length GPU and cooling requirements I also assumed you will be using a higher end or 6+ core CPU and actually doing "Work"

What size/model Pelican do you have or will you buy a Pelican that fits the PC?

Corsair Air240 is great for air cooling, will fit the Bequiet Darkrock TF cooler or Noctua NHL12, easily fits a full size GPU (290mm limit, even an RTX 2080 ti is about 270mm), full size PSU, 3x 3.5" HDD and 3x2.5" SSD/HDD all be it's a MATX case so a bit bigger total volume but the 2 chamber design makes it a cube.

Or

If you need smaller and are willing to buy SFX PSU the Silverstone RVZ03 is about the best on thermals for really small cases but much harder to build in and fitting a GPU can be tricky to say the least.
https://youtu.be/ebFfH7LoiwE

Or

Fractal Design Nano S with meshmod front intake / Meshify C Mini which will fit a larger CPU cooler but is taller/deeper but not as thick.

More info on what system you want to put in it would be helpful.

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Last edited by ChiTownButcher; 01-09-2019 at 10:32 PM.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by ChiTownButcher View Post
Judging by your references to taking it to a job, the Pelican case for protection while traveling (possible airplane or van loaded with gear) full length GPU and cooling requirements I also assumed you will be using a higher end or 6+ core CPU and actually doing "Work"

What size/model Pelican do you have or will you buy a Pelican that fits the PC?

Corsair Air240 is great for air cooling, will fit the Bequiet Darkrock TF cooler or Noctua NHL12, easily fits a full size GPU (290mm limit, even an RTX 2080 ti is about 270mm), full size PSU, 3x 3.5" HDD and 3x2.5" SSD/HDD all be it's a MATX case so a bit bigger total volume but the 2 chamber design makes it a cube.

Or

If you need smaller and are willing to buy SFX PSU the Silverstone RVZ03 is about the best on thermals for really small cases but much harder to build in and fitting a GPU can be tricky to say the least.
https://youtu.be/ebFfH7LoiwE

Or

Fractal Design Nano S with meshmod front intake / Meshify C Mini which will fit a larger CPU cooler but is taller/deeper but not as thick.

More info on what system you want to put in it would be helpful.

Yes, I will be wanting to take this PC to collaborate in video editing, video transcoding on-location, and doing rough renders.

I don't have my eye on any one specific Pelican case. Air travel isn't a priority right now, but I'd like to generally to overall be about the size of a carry-on.
My thinking is finding the right size Pelican case that will have space to sit the computer case flat with foam padding, and then install a UPS on the other side, and mount a gutted LCD, or get a portable LCD monitor (~20-23" maybe) mounted in the lid. That way, I just have to connect the one UPS plug to an extension cord and I'm good to go.

With that all being said, cost is still a large factor overall. I was originally looking at getting the NCASE M1 for its size and get a Pelican case that fit it. But the M1 is already a pricey case, plus another ~$200+ for a Pelican case that's a huge chunk of cash right there. I need this to last a long time which is why thermals are pretty important to me in this build.

But right now, planned key components aren't anything totally crazy:
AMD 2700X
32GB ram
GTX 2070
x1 M.2
x1 HDD (3.5")
[Generic] AIO cooler (TBD)
[Generic] Mini-ITX mobo (TBD)
[Generic] PSU (TBD)

I am leaning towards using an AIO cooler which will allow me to get a little more creative with placement so I don't need to be quite so picky about total ambient airflow. That, and if I will be restricted to a passive cooler, and can't use a large-tower cooler, an AIO will probably yield slightly better temps. Overall, I might need to do a little case modding if, for instance, I can't find a case small enough that also can support a dual 120mm rad.

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Old 01-10-2019, 10:51 AM
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If your looking for something that will fit a 240 AIO you might be looking at an MATX case. Parvum systems makes cases out of CNC Acrylic and does do custom also.

Smallest case that they MIGHT make slightly larger to fit an AIO on the top, then run front and rear as intake..
https://www.parvumsystems.com/product/x2-0-itx

Or something that already supports an AIO...

https://www.parvumsystems.com/product/s2-5-matx

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Old 01-10-2019, 11:30 PM
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Also if you looked at the M1 here is a less expensive alternative that is slightly larger. (About 30% the price)

https://m.newegg.com/products/N82E16...SABEgJKOfD_BwE

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Old 01-16-2019, 11:02 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by ChiTownButcher View Post
Also if you looked at the M1 here is a less expensive alternative that is slightly larger. (About 30% the price)

https://m.newegg.com/products/N82E16...SABEgJKOfD_BwE

This is actually a pretty damn nice looking case!
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:24 PM
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Glad I could help. Also had another thought. Use the smallest case that will fit the Mobo/CPU, SFX PSU and SSD or M.2 NVME. Then get and external GPU enclosure in two separate cases and just plug them together on site.

BTW, I dont think they are big enough but check out Harbor Freight Apache boxes. They are not as good as Pelican Storm cases but pretty close and way better than Plano for less $. (Speaking as someone who has about 15 cases of this style including Pelican, Pelican storm, SKB and Apache for firearms.)

Also for Pelican check out opticsplanet.com and their sister sight DVOR.com. Sometimes they have good deals especially if you dont care about the color. They are a legit company in the burbs of Chicago and have ordered from them dozens of times over the years without issue.

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Last edited by ChiTownButcher; 01-16-2019 at 07:37 PM.
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:35 PM
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Infact

https://www.dvor.com/dry-boxes-51-2019-01-11.html

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Old 01-19-2019, 10:52 AM
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Also the do make a mesh version of the case.

https://cougargaming.com/products/cases/qbxkaze/

Either way I suggest doing homework because these little cases have their limits.

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