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 Post subject: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:37 am 
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HDPLEX, a long-lived maker of passively cooled cases for computers, is now offering the stylish 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case, big enough to handle ATX, mATX and mITX cases with multiple power options including ATX, SFX, Flex, a tiny 160W NanoATX (with external AC/DC adapter) and even linear PSUs for audiophiles who prefer them over switching supplies. In keeping with its high end targets, the massive 15 mm thick aluminum facia is available in black or silver and the central power button can be customized with your logo and choice of blue or white LED lighting. The front panel also pops on/off with a pull, a unique feature among heatsink cases, for easy access to front mounted 5.25" devices and hidden hotswap HDD cage or optical drive. The large heatsinks on the sides employ 8 copper heatpipes for passive cooling for CPU/GPU up to 95W TDP. MSRP is $288.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:12 am 
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The optional GPU cooling is the interesting bit. Gonna get one of these in to test?

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:58 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
The optional GPU cooling is the interesting bit. Gonna get one of these in to test?

Not sure yet. There are so many different unique options it's hard to know just how/what to outfit it with.

This for example is pretty cool -- http://www.hd-plex.com/HDPLEX-250W-Hi-F ... Input.html

otoh, one of their external linear PSUs ($385 for 100W, $785 for 300W) would be interesting too -- if I decided to assemble a high end digital audio PC.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 4:08 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
otoh, one of their external linear PSUs ($385 for 100W, $785 for 300W) would be interesting too -- if I decided to assemble a high end digital audio PC.

Gonna jump off the audiophile cliff, aren't you? :D

I'm curious what level of efficiency they get out of the linear PSUs..

I'd like to see one of these cases stuffed with a cpu and gpu just to see what the thermal curves are for them and the surrounding components..

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:05 am 
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Sorry for my ignorance, but how does a linear PSU differ from any other PC-PSU we know; and what's the advantage?

I'm also curious about the photograph. Is the graphics card reversed? The block is on top of it. So either it is a special model, or the PCIe slot is near the case wall.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 2:16 am 
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Cistron wrote:
I'm also curious about the photograph. Is the graphics card reversed? The block is on top of it. So either it is a special model, or the PCIe slot is near the case wall.

Image
Biggest photo I've found. Clearly flexible PCI-E riser used.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 6:59 am 
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Cistron wrote:
Sorry for my ignorance, but how does a linear PSU differ from any other PC-PSU we know; and what's the advantage?

Among idiophiles, a faction claims switched-mode power supplies create high frequency switching noise artifacts that even after heavy filtering are audible, compared to linear power supplies. The latter are admittedly much simpler and don't have any HF noise to filter out but are far more expensive and less efficient because the transistors stay powered on constantly, which means higher power/temp and cooling requirements. I'm on the fence because I've used amps with SMPS as well as linear PSUs and haven't been able to hear with any certainty that the former causes the sound to be worse. SMPS & Class D seem to dominate car audio, but the home audio gang has been somewhat harder to sway. Still, some high end audio companies have moved aggressively to SMPS & Class D amps, claiming super high efficiency and much smaller size for very high power output with equal or better audio fidelity. Hypex amp modules, Class D darlings, are currently combined with SMPS in many high end amps -- Nuforce, for example, iirc. Going much farther back, Linn adopted SMPS for its pre/power amps in the early 90s, calling it the "Brilliant" power supply. (My best stereo amp is a Linn 5105 w/ SMPS) Currently, Linn's entire electronics range seems to run on SMPS... and Linn is a long UK success story.

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I'm also curious about the photograph. Is the graphics card reversed? The block is on top of it. So either it is a special model, or the PCIe slot is near the case wall.

OverZerg's large pic is self-explanatory. The same basic arrangement has been used in fanless desktop cases, going all the way back to the Hush ATX -- except in our Hush sample, the riser card kept the GPU facing down. With the low TDP of GPUs in those days, it wasn't significant; the passive cooling system was capable of handling considerably more heat than the system generated.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:16 pm 
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Heck with 'golden ears'. It would be interesting to look at the spectral output of the audio chain with both linear and SMPS supplies just to see how far down the spurs are / impact on IMD.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2015 12:09 am 
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Thanks for the elaborate explanation, Mike! And for the photo, OverZerg.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2015 1:20 am 
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Thanks for the explanation!


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:01 am 
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Someone should make a case like this with a copper case rather than an Al case. It shouldn't be that much more expensive, especially in the current low commodity price environment. Not only would this look cooler but it would have better thermal properties and allow you to use higher TDP CPUs - assuming that the case was the bottleneck for cooling rather than the pipes.

I have two of these HD-Plex cases for HTPCs and I love them - they are great for totally silent and small HTPCs - one is in my bedroom and one in my main TV room.

But I don't understand all this talk of GPUs - why do you need a GPU these days given the GPUs built into Intel CPUs? Short of a gaming PC why does anyone need a GPU these days? Use an i3-6300 or i3-6100 with a 47W TDP and Intel HD 530 graphics.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:02 am 
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MikeC wrote:
Among idiophiles....
Freudian slip?


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:38 am 
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wayner wrote:
MikeC wrote:
Among idiophiles....
Freudian slip?

No slip. I am definitely a music lover & audio hobbyist and could be described as an audiophile but imo the vast majority of them have taken leave of their common sense. Hence idio...

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:42 am 
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MikeC wrote:
wayner wrote:
MikeC wrote:
Among idiophiles....
Freudian slip?

No slip. I am definitely a music lover & audio hobbyist and could be described as an audiophile but imo the vast majority of them have taken leave of their common sense. Hence idio...
What do you mean - green major markers really do improve the sound of a CD!

A couple-three of decades ago I used to read UHF magazine so I know what you mean.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 12:38 pm 
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wayner wrote:
... Short of a gaming PC...

That.

HTPC implies a 1080p TV monitor (ok, implies for most of us, for now..). 95W limit on the GPU implies you could stuff a GTX 950 in there. It'd be interesting to see if the case could effectively cool a gaming PC for the living room environment.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 8:26 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
I am definitely a music lover & audio hobbyist and could be described as an audiophile but imo the vast majority of them have taken leave of their common sense. Hence idio...


Love that post Mike!

Count me in...

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:01 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
HTPC implies a 1080p TV monitor (ok, implies for most of us, for now..). 95W limit on the GPU implies you could stuff a GTX 950 in there. It'd be interesting to see if the case could effectively cool a gaming PC for the living room environment.
The integrated GPU on the Skylake series of CPUs can drive three 4K monitors so even if you want to build a future proof HTPC you should be ok with integrated graphics. I agree that for gaming you will want a discrete GPU, but I question the wisdom of using one of these cases for a gaming build - not that it matters to me as I am not a gamer.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:31 am 
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wayner wrote:
Someone should make a case like this with a copper case rather than an Al case. It shouldn't be that much more expensive, especially in the current low commodity price environment. Not only would this look cooler but it would have better thermal properties and allow you to use higher TDP CPUs - assuming that the case was the bottleneck for cooling rather than the pipes.

Whole copper cooler vs copper+alu cooler almost no difference in cooling performance with huge difference in price. You should look at copper scythe ninja vs original for example.
wayner wrote:
But I don't understand all this talk of GPUs - why do you need a GPU these days given the GPUs built into Intel CPUs? Short of a gaming PC why does anyone need a GPU these days? Use an i3-6300 or i3-6100 with a 47W TDP and Intel HD 530 graphics.

1) madVR could easily use top GPUs and asking for more )
2) Light to medium gaming possible with 750TI which is 65W, I use it now. 950 even stronger, basically you could play any modern game with some graphics tweaks in game.


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:39 am 
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OverZerg wrote:
wayner wrote:
Someone should make a case like this with a copper case rather than an Al case. It shouldn't be that much more expensive, especially in the current low commodity price environment. Not only would this look cooler but it would have better thermal properties and allow you to use higher TDP CPUs - assuming that the case was the bottleneck for cooling rather than the pipes.

Whole copper cooler vs copper+alu cooler almost no difference in cooling performance with huge difference in price. You should look at copper scythe ninja vs original for example.
Why are copper components so much more expensive? Copper costs about $5/kg on the commodities markets - even if you add a large margin the raw materials shouldn't be that much more. Is it a lot more expensive to fabricate?


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 7:11 am 
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http://www.infomine.com/investment/metal-prices/copper/

looks like copper is at least 3x the cost per pound. and of course copper is much heavier too..

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:31 am 
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xan_user wrote:
http://www.infomine.com/investment/metal-prices/copper/

looks like copper is at least 3x the cost per pound. and of course copper is much heavier too..

The weight might be a good thing. Heavy deluxe version, aimed at the audiophile market perhaps? ;)

But seriously. Copper is a great material, ascetically. I love to see something NUC sized. :)

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Last edited by Vicotnik on Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:40 am 
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xan_user wrote:
http://www.infomine.com/investment/metal-prices/copper/

looks like copper is at least 3x the cost per pound. and of course copper is much heavier too..

But still how much does that add to the BOM? $10? $20? And I think it would look a lot cooler to have a copper coloured case - assuming it doesn't oxidize and end up looking like an old penny (note that we have those in Canada anymore).


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:44 am 
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It will of course oxidize over time. That's part of the beauty.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:57 am 
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Vicotnik wrote:
It will of course oxidize over time. That's part of the beauty.
Would that affect the thermal conductive properties of the case?


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 9:14 am 
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wayner wrote:
Would that affect the thermal conductive properties of the case?

No, I don't think so. Maybe the case could be made so it could be polished, but I think one would do that for the looks, not the performance.

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Main: ASRock B85M-ITX | i3-4330 | 16GB DDR3 | Intel 730 240GB | HDPLEX H1-S | picoPSU | No moving parts | Idle 13.9W
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Gaming: Intel DH77EB | i5-3570K | GTX 1060 6GB | 16GB DDR3 | TJ08-E | RM750X
Server: ASRock N3150-ITX | ~30TB | G-360 | Idle ~25W


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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2015 9:30 am 
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The thermal conductivity of pure copper is double that of pure aluminum. But I don't know of ANY audio amps that use copper heatsinks, probably because of the weight -- iirc, copper weighs at least 3x as much (ie, density is 3x). So if a high end amp weighs 40 lbs with aluminum heatsinks (not unusual), it could weigh 2~3x that with the same heatsinks if they were made of aluminum. The HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 weighs 8kg; my guess is about 5kg of that is in the heatsinks. If they were made of copper, it would easily weigh 18kg. The increased weight imposes higher shipping cost & packaging penalties throughout the production process, from shipping raw materials all the way to final delivery to customer.

If someone decided to get really serious about making a high efficiency "heatsink case" of copper, then the key would be to develop a fin structure that maximizes cooling area so that weight could be kept reasonable. Rather than the usual thick fins loosely spaced on the sides, a widely spaced honeycomb-type structure open at the top and the bottom made of relatively thin copper sheeting would make more sense. I'm talking of copper sheeting almost as thin as found in typical tower heatpipe heatsinks. (Think of a radiator for a car or PC water cooling with all its thin fins, but spaced so the holes are closer to 2cm for passive convection airflow). One side would have to be thick & heavy enough to allow grooves for heatpipes & clamps to be secured, and the perimeter might have to be made thick enough so the structure is self-supporting.

The thing is, demand for this would be pretty low. High end audio usually calls for the computer to be dedicated to audio. Gaming on such a machine would be a no-no. Hence, there's no demand in computer audio for a passive case to dissipate say 200W+. And if you're into gaming enough to want a 150W+ TDP GPU, then chances are, the level of quiet we've shown to be achievable in our Silent Gaming PC Build Guides (below 20 [email protected] for some even at full load) would be more than good enough.

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 Post subject: Re: HDPLEX 2nd Gen H5 heatsink case
PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:49 am 
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These cases are now available.

I describe my build here:

viewtopic.php?f=14&t=68842&p=597738#wrapheader

Great case! :)

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