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 Post subject: Experience with m-ITX build: PC-Q18/Z87I-Deluxe/i7/Samuel 17
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2006 5:18 am
Posts: 14
Recently completed my first m-ITX build.

Major components:
Lian Li PC-Q18
Asus Z87I-Deluxe
i7 4770K

In general the case was very easy to setup and the quality is first rate. I was not happy that it's setup to only allow the power supply to have it's intake fan positioned above the heat sink. The prior case of this class let you turn around the power supply and use it either way. I had a metal shop mill a precision opening on the side panel and finished it off with a nice grill so I could intake power supply air from the outside. Also removed the hard disk backplane as it adds little value for me, and they made a odd choice for the power connection (old molex style). Since the power supply cables terminate with the new style power connections, the backplane just added unnecessary complexity.

Used the SilverStone ST55F-G modular power supply which has a length of 140mm. With the optional short cable kit, it works well. Don't really think you'd want to use a longer power supply. Having the option for short cables is wonderful.

One of my biggest issues was figuring out a good cooler choice given the 80mm distance from the CPU to the power supply (ideally it should be 70mm or less to provide air intake). The Z87I-Deluxe has a number of great features, but I couldn't convince myself that something like the Scythe Big Shuriken 2 Rev.B would clear several high standing motherboard parts. After much debate I decided to go with the Prolimatech Samuel 17 as it has an asymmetric design which allows several alternative placements to get around some of these issues. The Samuel 17 fits without a problem, and seems to provide good cooling performance. I paired it with a Noiseblocker NB-eLoop B12-2 fan. The overall rig is fairly quiet, but haven't dug into Asus fan expert in any detail yet to lower the noise level even further. My only issue so far is that the Asus software doesn't seem to be able to run the Noiseblocker at anything but full speed, but has determined that the 2 case fans can be controlled. Have to figure out why this is happening as I didn't think PWM fans were required (the case fans aren't PWM).

One last note on the OS - Windows Pro 8.1... I was reluctant to go with Windows 8 seeing how maligned it's been in the press. Without a doubt, forcing the Modern UI on non-tablet users was an extremely dumb move on their part. If you like it, great, but my entire software suite doesn't use it, so you end up switching to the traditional interface anyways. With one free software install called "Classic Shell" all was good. You end up with a better Windows 7, and for 99.9% of the time can completely avoid the Modern UI (you also have to set the default apps so when clicking on certain file types you don't get thrust into Modern UI apps). The performance of W8.1 is stellar. From power off to being able to click on a UI element and interact in about 15 seconds (not including the time it takes to type in your password). Going into sleep mode or power off are equally fast. Have installed over 100 apps without a single compatibility issue including some which aren't officially supported like Photoshop CS5. MS is doing a disservice to their users by not allowing this sort of setup out of the box.


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 Post subject: Re: Experience with m-ITX build: PC-Q18/Z87I-Deluxe/i7/Samue
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 10:30 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Posts: 1878
Location: Guatemala
Larry wrote:
The Samuel 17 fits without a problem, and seems to provide good cooling performance. I paired it with a Noiseblocker NB-eLoop B12-2 fan. The overall rig is fairly quiet, but haven't dug into Asus fan expert in any detail yet to lower the noise level even further. My only issue so far is that the Asus software doesn't seem to be able to run the Noiseblocker at anything but full speed, but has determined that the 2 case fans can be controlled. Have to figure out why this is happening as I didn't think PWM fans were required (the case fans aren't PWM).
In most Asus motherboards there is only 1 true PWM header (CPU_FAN), the rest are 3pin voltage controlled headers (CHA_FAN 1, 2, 3), in some asus motherboards you have CPU_OPT, this is just a Y splitter sensor from the CPU_FAN, so in essence is a mirror header, so it will control the same way you chose the CPU_FAN.

Now the problem you are having with the Noiseblocker NB-eLoop B12-2, is that is a 3pin fan and you are using it on a PWM fan header (CPU_FAN), so as most motherboards on their true PWM header always send 12V and the mobo/fan regulates its speed via the PWM signal, in your case is like running at 12V fully because the motherboard doesnt know (yet) that you are using a 3pin fan. But asus was smart enough to cover this issue, and its pretty simple, you need to enter your bios --> Monitor --> Fan Speed Control, in there you will see CPU Q-Fan Control, you need to change it from AUTO to ADVANCED, what this change will do is simple, just tell the motherboard to not control the CPU_FAN via PWM control but via voltage regulation, aka how a 3pin should be. I'll leave a pic of my bios so you get an idea,

Image

Once you change it fanXpert2 should be able to control it and tune it to your liking as your other fans. Remember to re run the tuning so it gathers the info from the Noiseblocker eLoop B12-2, else it will control it the same way it was before you made the change on the bios.

_________________
GameMi >> MSI Z87-GD65 | Intel Core i7-4790K | Thermalright Silver Arrow IBE + 3x Noctua NF-A15 PWM @500rpms| Crucial Ballistix Sport 32GB DDR3 1600 | nVidia GTX780 + ARCTIC Accelero Xtreme IV | Samsung SA850 27'' 2560x1440 | Samsung 840pro 512GB | Hitachi 7K1000 1TB | Fractal Design Define R4 + 4x Noctua NF-A14 PWM @450rpm | SeaSonic SS-860XP2
Other builds ---> ServeMi | CamMi | MiniMi | HTPCMi


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 Post subject: Re: Experience with m-ITX build: PC-Q18/Z87I-Deluxe/i7/Samue
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:30 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2006 5:18 am
Posts: 14
Abula,

Thank you very much. That did the trick. I think the main sound I'm hearing now is the HDD. This is the most powerful, but quiet system I'm ever put together.

Now to tackle booting Linux Mint off a thumb drive as a normal install, but that's another story.


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 Post subject: Re: Experience with m-ITX build: PC-Q18/Z87I-Deluxe/i7/Samue
PostPosted: Fri Jan 17, 2014 2:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2003 6:54 am
Posts: 3011
Location: Sweden
Larry wrote:
Used the SilverStone ST55F-G modular power supply which has a length of 140mm.

What do you think about that PSU, especially noise?


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