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 Post subject: Corsair 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 2:39 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 10:54 am
Posts: 18
Location: US
It has been quite some time since i've built a new system (i7-920 was just out), so hopefully I can get some feedback as i'm planning things out (some of these are not fixed, but just where I have been leaning):

CPU: Still in limbo (Hawell Refresh Pending), most likely i7 "K" series (because you never know when you might regret a locked processor :lol: )
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U12S
Thermal Compound: Either Noctua or IC Diamond (have a few spare tubes lying around)
Memory: Muskin 16GB DDR3L-1600
Motherboard: ASUS Z97 Gryphon
Graphics: Gigabyte 750TI (already own this, transplanting from another machine)
Storage: Samsung 840 256GB x 2
Power Supply: Seasonic SS-660XP2
Case: Corsair 350D (was given this)
Case Fan(s): Noctua 140mm(s) + 120mm(s)

The case isn't generally what I would use, but one should not argue with free, so at this point it is just determining how to make the best of it (once I get the basics nailed down, I can worry about how to further improve it). I'm also aware the power supply is overkill, but out of the options of what is on the market, the case design, and likelyhood of moving to a larger video card in the future, this is what I landed on.

What is not clear to me is how to best deal with purely air cooling in this case (it seems quite popular for water cooling). The front HDD bracket/SSD cage look like they need to get tossed, as they seem to significantly block the airflow from the front intake fans (which are already significantly blocked on the intake side by the front cover). SSD's will then be transplanted into the lower 5.25 bay in a mobile rack to make room for this adjustment.

That leaves dealing with exhuast. The PSU seems pretty much self-contained (intake from underneath, exhaust out back)... but not sure what to do with rear/top. If there was a radiator in the top, it seems like swapping the rear exhaust to an intake and making the entire top an exhaust would make the most sense. However, since this will be only air the CPU cooler is already pushing towards the rear exhaust (I suppose you could rotate the cooler 90 degrees, but then you'd be feeding it heat from the video card)

There are many options, but I am not sure which is going to be more efficient? Block off the rear and make the entire top an exhaust? Block off the top, and exhaust everything out the rear? I've even pondered possibly blocking off the rear-half of the top, and running an intake on the front half (to blow directly into the CPU cooler) and then exahust everything out the rear. I suppose I could buy enough fans to test every configuration, but that seems like quite a waste.

Any comments/suggestions would be much appreciated,


Last edited by Domain on Mon Jun 09, 2014 12:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Corsaid 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 7:55 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Front to back cooling will probably work the best. 2 x 140 in front and 1 x 120 in back. Cover the top to reduce transmitted noise from the GPU and CPU coolers.

Devil's Canyon (the unlocked Haswell refresh) might come on June 2. Have to wait and see. That said, you might want to wait until Aug/Sept to let whatever x97 chipset and mobo firmware bugs settle out.

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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)


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 Post subject: Re: Corsaid 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 8:51 am 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 10:54 am
Posts: 18
Location: US
Thanks for the reply,

I already have the 2x 140mm + 1x 120mm setup in the case, but I went ahead and purchased another 2x fans for testing the top venting (I can always reuse them in case one of the other fans fails)...will post the results eventually. If I didn't already have this case, I would probably have went with the Fractal Define R4, as there are a number of sacrifices you have to make with the 350D, and their size difference isn't that great. I will probably end up lining it with Acoutipack, as some of the external surfaces are quite thin/flimsy.

I've already decided to wait for Devil's Canyon... the wait is annoying but even the motherboard isn't available yet (maybe end of this week?). As for Z97 I guess i'll have to hope for the best... the Gryphon board i'm looking at is about as stripped down as you can find (the reason I picked that board), so less to break/be buggy (or that is the hope). I'm not sure I can hold out until August/September as my old i7 920/x58 is starting to act up... not to mention being a massive heat producing/power sucking monster.

Eventually the hope is to move to much larger a 800 series (Maxwell based) video card as well, but who knows when those will hit the market, so the 750Ti will have to do for now.


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 Post subject: Re: Corsaid 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 12:25 pm 
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Posts: 1892
Location: Guatemala
Since you are going with FanXpert3 motherboard, and if your goal is a quiet setup, chose for the frontal case fans Antec True Quiet 140. SPCR did review it on Second 140 mm Fan Roundup: Antec, bequiet!, Corsair, Scythe, with an motherboard like the one you are buying should have no trouble dropping them ultra low as the review has them or i personally have tested with my Asus Maximus VI Gene.

Image

For 120s, i would suggest you read SPCR Fan Roundup #6: Scythe, Noiseblocker, Antec, Nexus, Thermalright, that roundup has some of the best fans test together, like Nexus Basic 120, Noiseblocker M12-S1/2, Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP12. Only two other fans that i would consider that werent in there is Noctua NF-S12A and Scythe Slipstream / Glidestream.

The Noctua U12S is a fine cooler, but there are better options for the money, like Scythe Mugen 4 CPU Cooler: Scythe Strikes Back and Scythe Kotetsu CPU Cooler: A Compact King, this last one outperforms the NH-U14S that should outperform the U12S.

Quote:
What is not clear to me is how to best deal with purely air cooling in this case (it seems quite popular for water cooling). The front HDD bracket/SSD cage look like they need to get tossed, as they seem to significantly block the airflow from the front intake fans (which are already significantly blocked on the intake side by the front cover). SSD's will then be transplanted into the lower 5.25 bay in a mobile rack to make room for this adjustment.

That leaves dealing with exhuast. The PSU seems pretty much self-contained (intake from underneath, exhaust out back)... but not sure what to do with rear/top. If there was a radiator in the top, it seems like swapping the rear exhaust to an intake and making the entire top an exhaust would make the most sense. However, since this will be only air the CPU cooler is already pushing towards the rear exhaust (I suppose you could rotate the cooler 90 degrees, but then you'd be feeding it heat from the video card)
This is totally dependant on your setup, but read Bit Tech The Big Air Cooling Investigation.

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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: Corsaid 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 3:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 10:54 am
Posts: 18
Location: US
Thanks for the reply,

Admittedly I don't know much about Fan Xpert (or I belive they call it "Thermal Armor" on this board), since i've been adjusting fan speed manually for years... i'm one of those old "get off my lawn with your fancy software!" people :lol: It looks quite interesting, so I'll have to play with it when the system is finally built.

I'll take a look at the Antec Fans... the original ideal was 2 x NH-A14 FLX, 1-2 x NH-SP12A FLX and then adjust to best sound level/performance.

As for the CPU cooler, I have been using Scythe for years (i7 920 system is on a Mugen 2), but on this mATX board I fear there will be clearance issues. Noctua states the NH-U14S doesn't work well on this board (boards dimensions are identical to the Z87 model they tested), as it is too wide so it blocks the first PCI-E slot. The Mugen 4 looks like it is only 5mm wider then the NH-U12S, so it would probably clear the slot, but it has 42mm more depth , so it may cause issues with RAM clearance.

I've also dropped the ideal of low voltage ram, and swaped to looking at Mushkin's Redline CL9 1866Mhz memory, which may be slightly taller.

Clearance issues notwithstanding, Scythe seems to be slowly disappearing from the vendor's I purchase from, whereas Noctua seems to be readily available nearly everywhere, albiet at a premium price.


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 Post subject: Re: Corsair 350D Advice?
PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2014 12:59 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 10:54 am
Posts: 18
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Well the 4790k is ordered, just waiting for the supposed release date of 6/25, otherwise the rest of the machine is here/mostly assembled. As this thing has come together over the last few weeks, ended up needing far more parts/expenses then I expected.

The lower HDD bay along with the SSD cage were tossed as they were making the already restricted front intakes even worse. With those gone, I had to find an alternate solution to mounting the SDDs', but didn't like the ideal of using velcro, so I ended up buying a SuperMicro 4x Sata/SAS rack that fits in the 5.25" bays. Then with the rack in place, I didn't have enough room from an optical disc drive any longer (partially blocks off the top fan position), so had to move that to an external USB enclosure.

The top of the case not having a filter is a major problem, so I ended up having to grab a filter kit for this case made by Demciflex. This also came with a front filter, so I cut/ripped out the stock filtering material.

The Acoustipack also became a problem... the odd/long power supply cable runs along with the 4x SATA cables from the rack meant I have much less clearance behind the motherboard tray, so the door wouldn't close properly. Still trying to deterine if I can route everything in such a way to give me enough clearance from the additional 7mm of material.

As for the fan situation, based on some rudimentary testing it looks like using the top front as an intake/closing off the top rear will give good results... it lines up very neatly with where the CPU cooler's fan is drawing air from. I'll have to test all the positions once the processor gets here though.

I also could have went with a larger heatsink (couldn't find anywhere that sells the Mugen 4) as the videocard is in the lowest x16 slot, so blocking off the first x16 wasn't an issue. We'll see if the U12-S can keep up with the 4970k... my hope is to do what I did with my i7-920... undervolt as much as possible and then see how far I can push the chip with minimum voltage (the i7-920 manages 3.2 ghz at 0.973 vcore).


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