This build was inspired by AuraAllen's NSK1300 modifications as per the pictures in this thread
. My build is nowhere near as clean, and I didn't paint the frame as he did.
AMD X2 4000+ G1 Brisbane 2.5ghz 1.15v
4x1gb Ballistix DDR2-1000
WD Raptor 150gb
PW-200-M using FSP 400W Zen for 12v power
USB Lacie Optical Drive
1xEnermax Marathon as rear intake
1xEnermax Marathon drawing air through HR-01+
What I did:
Since I wasn't going to be using an optical drive internally, and I didn't need the optical drive bay-cover, I decided to try my hand at moldable epoxy. I purchased System 3 Sculpwood
at a local wood shop. It says it's for wood repair, but it explicitly states it will bond to any non porous hard surface. I purchased some flat black spray paint that works with plastic from Michaels.
The Sculpwood filled in all the spaces on the front panel of the case. I sanded it down, and then painted it. The final product is an indication that this was my first attempt at anything like this. I didn't quite sand the face enough, so when the paint dried there were visible inconsistencies in the surface. I will eventually redo it, but given the low light it sits in, I actually don't notice the surface.
Enough gabber, picture time. Some are out of focus, my camera doesn't like low light and no flash, and then with a flash everything is too harsh.
USB powered Lacie Drive. It works just fine just one usb, but the only game I own that requires a disc(Everything needs to be on Steam) is BF2, and the disc is quite old. It's age is noticeable, and as such, the drive has a hard time w/o a second USB for power. It plays movies just fine with one.
The NSK1300 has only 2 USB ports on the front of the case. My AN-M2 has 3 usb headers. I modified the usb/phone/mic pcb installed behind the face plate with zip-ties and usb ports ripped from 2 pci slot usb headers.
Top down views. Here, the airflow pattern should be understood. Air enters from the intake fan, goes through the HR-01+, airflow is assisted by the second fan, passes over the PW-200-M(tight fit), cools the Raptor, travels by the video card, and out the PCI slots/lower side panel vents.
I mounted the Raptor with shoe string in an X pattern, it dampens the drive well. I've used this flexible shoestring before for suspension, never had any issues with it. There's a foam pad underneath that keeps the raptor from making direct contact with the case. As it is, it's quiet. Initially it was in a Quiet Drive enclosure, but it was a tight fit, and it cramped airflow.
Angle from the side
Zen and power connections. I originally intended to use a Dell DA-2 220W brick with the PW-200-M, but some motherboards make the PW-200-M refuse to cooperate with this specific brick, and wouldn't you know it the AN-M2 is one of them. The plug is a modified motherboard 24-pin connector, details are in the link in my signature.
I purchased two stainless steel switches for power/reset. Each switch has a built in light with an independent circuit. The power switch has a white LED in a ring configuration, and the reset is just a circular red light. I think the Red light requires more than 12v. The white LED is bright whether it's powered by the PWR-on jumpers or HDD-activity jumpers. The red is very dim. Oh well. These are some shots before I installed the USBs/Reset switch.
The final product. In addition to the mucked up molding job, I also installed one of the USB plugs upside down...it's too much work to cut the zip ties and reinstall it, so until I get around to redoing the whole face plate, I'll attempt to cope.
A darker one to show off the power-on light.
Here it is in harsh light, you can easily see the issues with the surface consistency. Fortunately, I prefer ambient light and I'm not reminded of my shoddy craftsmanship.
Cooling and Noise
The majority of the noise is mechanical. I can definitely hear the idle noise of the Raptor, and it's seeks are clearly audible over anything else. The Marathon fans have only a turbulent woosh to them but it's only noticeable within 6'' of the case, and only if the room is extremely quiet.
As for cooling, I didn't record temperatures when I only had 1 fan installed, I do recall the ranges though.
1 fan as intake(23-26C ambient temp):
CPU idle/Load: 36-40C/56-63C
Case 'System' temp idle/load: 40C+/50C
1 fan intake, 1 fan on HR-01+
CPU idle/Load: 33-36C/44-50C
Case 'System' temp idle/load: 36C+/45C+
Just a little on power draw. I haven't done a CPU stress+GPU stress, but here are the numbers I have.
CPU load([email protected]
GPU load(Oblivion): 168-188W
Overall, aside from Catalyst Control Center bugs, I'm happy with the system. It's small, it looks clean(in dark light), and it's fairly low power.