It is currently Wed Oct 01, 2014 10:32 pm

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:11 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Hi all. A couple years ago I did a build using an Antec Mini P180 case and a Seasonic X-560 Gold PSU, based primarily upon information on this site. I've been very happy with it -- it is the quietest computer I have ever used. If the PSU fan has ever run at all, I have never been aware of it (I certainly can't hear it).

Time for a new build (primarily business machine, no gaming, no high end graphics needed, no huge space requirements), and the first decision is the case [although I should add that I've already bought a Seasonic X-650 Gold PSU because of an exceptional sale price, and again, I don't expect the fan to run much, if at all, so for my purposes it can be considered fanless :) ].

Since there hasn't been any recent additions to the Recommended List for cases, I thought I'd ask if the Mini P180 is still a good choice, or if it has been bettered by other (newer?) cases?

Specifically, there seems to be differing opinions on whether a bottom-psu case like the P180 is better with a fanless, or traditional psu.

Or put another way, would a fanless psu be better in a bottom-mount case like the P180, or in a traditional top-mount (possibly vented) case, like the Solo II?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 12:51 pm 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4638
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Welcome to SPCR.

If all you plan to run is a CPU/mobo and some hard drives, your system will only use 80 to 100W under normal loads (X650!!). So, PSU waste heat is pretty minor and it just doen't matter if it's a top or bottom mount, as long as there is an airflow path.

What are looking to stuff in the case and what kinds of business applications do you run? That'll will help with narrowing the response.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 2:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Thanks for the reply, Steve.

Mainly office applications, though I dabble a bit in video editing on the side, and of course video streaming.

I like using quality components. Probably an i7 at whatever speed seems to be the price/performance sweet-spot within the next few weeks. Likely 16GB RAM, though the current build seems fine with 8GB. In the current build, I'm using the on-board GPU, but I may go with a modest video card, like I did in the previous build. If so, like the previous build, I will try to find a fanless video card to keep noise down. Single optical drive; single hard drive (2TB); I use NAS for main storage/backup for all the boxes.

Yes, it really is pretty bare-bones. Good point about the 650W PSU, but I like the Seasonic Gold PSU's (particularly running without fan), and this one was at a lower price than the 560W (great sale at Newegg a while back). But you raise an interesting question (at least to me)--is it possible to run a PSU at too little load? Or does using a larger-than-required PSU waste power?


Last edited by L. Beau Grees on Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 5:49 pm 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4638
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
In general, PSUs of the same model will be pretty close in efficiency at various loads. That said, a lower wattage PSU will tend to be a few watts more efficient at sub 100W than a higher wattage one.

CPU: Video editing can benefit from hyperthreading in the i7, nothing else will. So, i guess it's up to you whether or not the extra $100 is worth it. All of your other apps won't notice the difference between an i7 or a Pentium. :)

RAM: Go with 8GB. You don't need 16GB and later if something comes up, adding RAM is the single easiest thing you can do.

Video card: Chances are the iGP will meet your needs for every task. If your video editing s/w is something like Premiere Pro and it uses the graphics card for hardware acceleration, then it's another story. Here's a nice benchmark from Puget Systems. Figure the HD4600 comes in just around the same or slightly faster than the GT 610.

Case: The Mini P180 is still nice. There's also the Solo II, Fractal Define R4, Fractal Define Mini...amongst others.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:43 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Thanks. So my short list is
Antec Mini P180 -- $144 + shipping + tax + exchange on dollar
Fractal Design Define Mini -- $90 + tax
Antec Solo II -- $120/$130 + shipping + tax

My local shop as one Define Mini on clearance, so no shipping, just tax, total about $100.

The Mini P180 is horribly priced (though I love the case), after shipping, tax, and exchange it would cost almost twice as much as the Define Mini.

The Solo II is in the middle, prices above from NCIX or Newegg, plus shipping and tax, probably about $155/$165 total.

So if PSU placement is not important in my build, then is there anything to recommend one of these cases over the others, other than price and personal preference?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:06 pm 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4638
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
It's pretty much price/personal preference.

The Solo will work with micro ATX and ATX mobos, the Mini is for micro ATX.

Solo has drive suspension. Mini didn't show any vibration in the review. If you were to cram a high wattage gfx card in there, the Solo would run hotter than the Mini. For your system, it's a wash.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:14 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Thanks. One more thing:

Does anyone have any experience with Puget Systems? Or, is there any other place one can still buy the Antec Mini P180?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:48 pm 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4638
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Puget has a good rep.

There are eBay sellers.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Got it. Thanks!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:40 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
So I picked up the Define Mini at a local shop on the weekend, and have been re-reading the SPCR review. A couple typos, and a couple questions:

In the Define Mini review, on page 1 in the Specification/Key Features chart under Cooling system, there are two lines saying "1 bottom..."; my guess is that one of them should say "1 top...".

On page 3, there is a photo of the drive cage, and the caption reads "The cleverly designed age..." rather than "The cleverly designed cage...".

Right below that, is a photo of the interior, with the drive cage removed, showing the fan. The caption reads "Placing the drives parallel to the expansion slots makes better use of the intake fan, with less airflow impedance, while the perpendicular position results in easier access."

Question: sorry for being dense, but which direction do parallel/perpendicular refer to; i.e. in the bottom, non-removable cage in the photo, are the drives parallel or perpendicular?

Below that photo, is one showing the rear exhaust fan. The caption reads "There also an optional..." but should be "There is also an optional...".

Finally, though we have established that it doesn't make much difference for a bare-bones type build such as I have described, it would still be great to have an answer to the original question assuming a much more high-end build: are fanless PSUs better matched to top-mount or bottom-mount cases and, in the case of bottom-mount, within a separate compartment (Mini P180) or the main compartment (Define Mini)?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:52 pm 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4638
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
If the HDDs face front to back in parallel with the case front and back, then the drive cage doesn't block the front fan's airflow. If the HDDs face the side that opens, then it's easier to install/remove them...but then the drive cage obstruct's the front fan's airflow.

Fanless PSU in a higher power system: I don't think I'd want a passive PSU drawing 300W plus in a separate compartment unless there was good directed airflow from some source...and generally, the source is the PSU itself. Even a 90% efficient PSU at 300W is generating 30W of waste heat. It would have no where to go.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Top/Bottom PSU-Mount Case vs Fanless PSU
PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:35 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:32 am
Posts: 21
Location: Adanac
Thanks for all the help, Steve.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group