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Upgrading HTPC from Corsair 250D, looking for similar

 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-30-2019, 05:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Upgrading HTPC from Corsair 250D, looking for similar

I've been using the Corsair 250D for a few years. It's been a decent case and served me well. But my MSI 1080 Ti Gaming X barely fits (and technically doesn't because I had to mod the case for this to work). Once HDMI 2.1 comes out, I will want a new videocard (for that 4k 120 FPS OLED bliss), and I'm sure those cards will be bigger than what I have. From quickly scanning around, the Fractal Design Mini C stands out to me. The Nano looks nice too, but it looks like I would need to buy a smaller PSU and I'm not sure if I want to do that just to save half an inch of height and depth. But don't get me wrong - essentially I'm looking for the smallest, prettiest, minimalist case that can fit a 240mm radiator for liquid cooling, 310mm and 2.5 slots of videocard clearance. I enjoyed the 250D because nobody would even notice it in the room, and with decent cooling it was inaudible. Is there anything better than the Fractal Design for my purposes? Thank you
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 05:49 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by t1337dude View Post
Essentially I'm looking for the smallest, prettiest, minimalist case that can fit a 240mm radiator for liquid cooling, 310mm and 2.5 slots of videocard clearance.
What about the Raijintek Ophion Evo? It's about 10L smaller than your 250D, and should fit everything.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-08-2019, 12:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by Gilles3000 View Post
What about the Raijintek Ophion Evo? It's about 10L smaller than your 250D, and should fit everything.
Great recommendation. I actually took a quick peak at it before pulling the trigger on my final decision. But I decided this time around to not go quite as small and grabbed the Fractal Design Mini C. I'm finding that once I get into ITX territory, the options and cooling capability drops too steeply. I love how small the ITX board is but when all is said and done, I still have to fit the 1080 Ti into it.

So far I'm finding that the Fractal Design Mini C blends into my entertainment center just as well as my Corsair 250D, and is otherwise better in every way. It has less depth and width, so in some ways it blends in even better, because the 250D's "small" form factor was still too tall to be use anywhere other than on the carpet. It didn't fit anywhere into my entertainment center, like an A/V receiver, which would have been the primary reason you might want the smaller form factor in the first place.

That Ophion Evo seems to be much smarter designed than the Corsair 250D in terms of space utilization. But two caveats - First, I'm not a fan of how "open" the case is (with the tempered glass spaced away from the case). CPU cooling looks like it would need something relatively SSF designed unless you go water cooling. If I went the water cooling route I suspect I'd be dealing with a lot of negative air pressure in the case, which would likely cause dust to creep in through every little crack and crevice rather than go through the dust filters. Unless I vent the radiator's hot air into the case, which probably would be even less ideal. Also it says it only supports 2-slot cards and even though it says it support the 1080 Ti, I'm not sure how well that would handle my 1080Ti which requires closer to 2.5-3 PCI slots.

2nd caveat is echoing my complaint about the 250D. It's still too tall and big to fit anywhere that you couldn't just use micro ATX or even ATX. When building these gaming ITX builds I've quickly realized that these ITX builds are infinitely more effective for PC's that aren't trying to be top-end gaming rigs. Because with that goal in mind, the best you're going to get with ITX builds is only at best a few inches smaller in each dimension. And you pay dearly for those inches (not in price but in options).


But yea, the Fractal Design Define Mini C is a dream for its size. My favorite thing about it is that it lets me ditch liquid cooling (which is frankly more work than it's worth but I understand the appeal for enthusiasts). I put the biggest air cooler for the CPU and VGA I could fine. This build runs a lot cooler and it's a lot more quiet thanks to the closed design w/ acoustic panels.
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