Lian Li PC-Q08 Mini-ITX Mini Tower Case

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Lian Li PC-Q08 Mini-ITX Mini Tower Case

Post by Lawrence Lee » Sun Sep 26, 2010 6:24 pm


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Post by Jipa » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:10 am

What a lovely case! Really liking the design and how you can also fit long graphic cards by (easily) removing the lower part of the HDD cage.

Also gave me an idea of how some brave builder could swap the PSU fan for something suitable and have it push/suck air through a suitable CPU-cooler (plugged to the CPU header, ofc).
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Post by MikeC » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:22 am

It could be turned into positive pressure case w/ more effective cooling (perhaps?) if a Seasonic x-400 fanless was used:

1. use a big fanless down-blow CPU HS w/ out fan that fills the available space
2. mount the x-400 psu w/ vent top facing in
3. flip the top fan to blow into the case (probably need spacers to stop blades from hitting the grill)
4. use both fans for positive pressure; some of the air will flow through the psu & cool it.
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Post by ryboto » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:55 am

My only issue is how large the case is. I like how it looks, and I would be tempted, but I'm on a miniature kick, and mITX, to me, means systems can me smaller than those built using the mATX form factor.
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Post by Hayate19XX » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:46 am

I wondered for some time now why is it there has not been made any Mini-DTX boards, yes there has but they are not quite powerful: http://pden.zotac.com/index.php?page=sh ... t&Itemid=1

With that size they could make a mix of of Micro-ATX and Mini-ITX boards like shuttle do (Besides x2 PCI-Express ports is better than 1) ( ̄ω ̄)
Could be nice with some LGA1366 (I think that was the problem with Mini-ITX) :cry:
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Post by MikeC » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:52 am

If the aim is a typical 1-2 drive pc for the desktop, then this lianli is not ideal. Other cases we've reviewed -- the Silverstone sugo 5 & 6, the Antec isk300 -- are better choices for such a role. As we emphasized in the conclusion, its most salient strength is the sheer # of drives that can be fitted. Nothing else in a reasonably quiet PC case comes close to this kind of storage density. Sure, there are NAS boxes with 5-6 HDD slots in boxes barely half the size, but they are nasty-noisy and >$1000 w/o drives. With a dualcore Atom board, 4gb memory, 32gb SSD (for os) & quiet 400w PSU, a base file server in this case would cost <$600. Add Ubuntu server (or WHS for another $100) and you're ready for up to 6 2tb drives.
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Post by merlin » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:57 am

This has been my dream NAS case ever since I first heard about it. It's unfortunate the drive cage vibration issue, but if that's the only issue, I'm sure I can come up with some sort of solution.
It's annoying how almost no company has come out with a good many drive case in a small form factor, but I'm glad Chenbro and Lian Li have finally released some cases. The PC-Q08 fixes a couple of the major issues with the Chenbro, it has a 140mm and 120mm fan that can be set to 5v, and we can pick any psu we want. The only advantage of the Chenbro case is the hot swap bays, but I assume swapping is going to be rare and getting to the drives seems pretty easy within the Lian Li.

I think this is a definite buy for me seeing as I plan on putting in 4 3.5" and 1 ssd within this case, but I really don't see the purpose of anyone buying this case if they don't have 4+ drives they want in here. There's better options for 1-2 drive cases for sure, even for serious gaming devices.
I rather like how it's light also, but obviously the aluminum is part of the reason for the drive resonance too.
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Post by zoob » Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:01 am

Would you be able to measure the clearance around the front mounted 120mm fan? I've been looking for a case for a loong time to make use of my Thermochill PA160 radiator... and this looks like it might be the one :)

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Post by protellect » Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:19 am

6 drives, it's packed pretty full:

Image
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Post by andymcca » Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:02 pm

protellect wrote:6 drives, it's packed pretty full:
Those cables look pretty angry.

Edit: I like the 4 sata cable though. Who makes that?
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Post by Monkeh16 » Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:46 pm

Looks like four cheap SATA cables, some sleeving, and heatshrink..

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Post by macher » Mon Sep 27, 2010 2:16 pm

Seems like the best NAS case for my needs. Space for lots of hard drives for my raid5-array, standard power supply mount and the ability to use the case for a gaming rig if my needs change.

For a while I was looking at the Fractal Design Array (wasn't that the first small case with a lot of hard drive space btw?) case but it wasn't flexible enough for my needs and didn't have the ability for proper cooling without some heavy modding. This case answers a lot of storage nerds needs :).

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Post by Vibrator » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:22 pm

Thanks for the review :)
I've been wondering what the clearance between the PSU and CPU cooler was. Now I know.

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Post by datapappan » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:41 pm

I thought it was interesting to see how CPU temps were affected by system fans being variated - are there any case temps measured?

I ask because I'm undecided between going for a normal setup (case fans + fans on CPU/GPU) or ducting the whole thing, leaving out case fans all together. (This is for another case though). In my current box I have trouble getting cool enough internal case temp at my desired noise level (sub-30 dB).

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Post by protellect » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:45 am

Monkeh16 wrote:Looks like four cheap SATA cables, some sleeving, and heatshrink..
actually its a SAS expander cable...
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Post by Monkeh16 » Tue Sep 28, 2010 2:32 pm

protellect wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:Looks like four cheap SATA cables, some sleeving, and heatshrink..
actually its a SAS expander cable...
So.. four cheap SATA cables, some sleeving, and heatshrink. ;)

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Post by andymcca » Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:48 pm

protellect wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:Looks like four cheap SATA cables, some sleeving, and heatshrink..
actually its a SAS expander cable...
Well I thought it looked nice :D And that would be the world's most impressive shrink-wrap! (Also I worry about the heat of a heat gun on the soft material of most SATA ribbons. Anyone have any insights on this?)
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Post by Hazelrah » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:08 pm

I saw one of these and think it is a great looking case. The red color in particular is unique without being too garish or gaudy.

But I agree with other comments that it is just way too big for a Mini-ITX board. I feel like I would be wasting too much space that could be used with a larger motherboard for larger and more RAM slots, maybe a PCIe TV card or sound card or other expansion, etc.

Cases like this basically show the need for a form factor between mini-ITX and micro-ATX. Too bad mini DTX or Shuttle's Flex ATX never took off.

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Post by Monkeh16 » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:51 pm

andymcca wrote:(Also I worry about the heat of a heat gun on the soft material of most SATA ribbons. Anyone have any insights on this?)
If you're fast it's fine. It's like soldering something with plastic inserts, be quick.

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Post by andymcca » Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:15 pm

Monkeh16 wrote:
andymcca wrote:(Also I worry about the heat of a heat gun on the soft material of most SATA ribbons. Anyone have any insights on this?)
If you're fast it's fine. It's like soldering something with plastic inserts, be quick.
I know I'm getting off topic here, but what would one solder with "plastic inserts" ?
I'm a big believer in flux > preheat > more flux > insta-solder-melt-and-wick :D

(but, of course, that is PCB soldering, perhaps other soldering is different?)
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Post by Shaman » Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:29 pm

I had been looking at getting one of the Lian Li mini-ITX cases recently, so it was very nice to see SPCR come out with this review.

Lian Li has another very interesting Mini-ITX case, the PC-Q11. I'ts less deeper than the PC-Q08, has less 'bling' and less vents for noise to escape. I really like it.

Image

An SPCR review of this case would be nice. :)

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Post by Monkeh16 » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:45 pm

andymcca wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:
andymcca wrote:(Also I worry about the heat of a heat gun on the soft material of most SATA ribbons. Anyone have any insights on this?)
If you're fast it's fine. It's like soldering something with plastic inserts, be quick.
I know I'm getting off topic here, but what would one solder with "plastic inserts" ?
Any form of multiple-pole connector for a starters.

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Post by Rebellious » Thu Sep 30, 2010 6:23 pm

Cases in this form factor always look like microwave ovens, eventually somebody will try to stick a cup of coffee in it. I bet this one sounds more like a vacuum cleaner sucking dust & dirt from the bottom vents and blowing it out the back.

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Post by Hazelrah » Fri Oct 08, 2010 12:37 am

Non-SPCR review of the PC-Q11 here (posted on the Cases forum): http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/LianLi/PC-Q11/

I do like the look of this case better -- it is taller than the Q08 but has a much smaller footprint. Would like it better if it were shorter, since I personally don't see the appeal of stuffing that many drives into an ITX system.

There is a single 140mm fan in front, compared to the two 140mm intake/ 120mm exhaust fans of the Q08. Would definitely like to see an SPCR comparison of the two.

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What do you think of my setup?

Post by PsychoPif » Fri Oct 08, 2010 1:03 pm

I find the PC-Q08 perfect for my needs and I came up with that shopping list. But before buying it, I wanted to know what you guys will think of my build:

GIGABYTE GA-H55N-USB3
CORSAIR Cooling Hydro Series CWCH50-1
SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 100283VX-2L Radeon HD 5770 (Juniper XT) 1GB
COOLER MASTER Silent Pro M600 RS-600-AMBA-D3 600W
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3
Intel Core i5-650
Crucial RealSSD C300 CTFDDAC128MAG-1G1 2.5" 128GB

Thanks.

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Re: What do you think of my setup?

Post by MikeC » Fri Oct 08, 2010 2:43 pm

PsychoPif wrote:I find the PC-Q08 perfect for my needs and I came up with that shopping list. But before buying it, I wanted to know what you guys will think of my build:

GIGABYTE GA-H55N-USB3
CORSAIR Cooling Hydro Series CWCH50-1
SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 100283VX-2L Radeon HD 5770 (Juniper XT) 1GB
COOLER MASTER Silent Pro M600 RS-600-AMBA-D3 600W
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3
Intel Core i5-650
Crucial RealSSD C300 CTFDDAC128MAG-1G1 2.5" 128GB

Thanks.
We tested the Corsair and found it wanting. Don't do it if you want quiet. You're much better off with a small/lower profile heatsink. We used a Scythe Samurai ZZ, which fits, and cools 73W i3 perfectly well at 1000~1200rpm with a fanless HD5750, going full tilt w/ Furmark and Prime95. The overall noise was just around 21 dBA/1m -- not bad with 4 HDDs mounted in the main drive bay.

Whether your system can be as quiet w/a SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 5770 is doubtful.

Other heatsink alternatives -- Scythe Big Shuriken -- but a PITA to mount and not any better than the ZZ. Zipang 2, also from Scythe will just barely squeeze in, but it can probably be run w/o fan as the top case exhaust fan is quite close by -- Zipang 2 is a very good cooler.
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Post by PsychoPif » Fri Oct 08, 2010 2:57 pm

I usually use the stock cooler since I don't overclock, might even undervolt, so I'm really looking for a quiet, basic heatsink.

I do game though and the 5770 is a good bargain, do you have any recommendation on a quiet card? I thought about a fanless one, but I fear that since it's face down on the bottom of the case, going fanless might be hard on the cooling.

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Post by MikeC » Fri Oct 08, 2010 3:04 pm

The only fanless 5770 seems to be the one made by Gigabyte. If you attached a very slim Scythe fan on it, temps will stay very modest and it will still be very quiet.
http://www.scythe-usa.com/product/acc/0 ... etail.html -- the 100rpm version will be fine.

The noise from these various Scythe coolers (and their fans) is generally far better than that of stock coolers.
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Post by idale » Sat Oct 09, 2010 4:55 am

MikeC wrote:The noise from these various Scythe coolers (and their fans) is generally far better than that of stock coolers.
Definitely. Can't speak for Intel (though you guys have used enough of those to say), but certainly the stock fans from AMD aren't particularly quiet. Not bad, better than things used to be, but still a good thing to try and replace (only middling performance, too, at least on the X2 and X4 CPUs I've used lately).

And especially if you're building a system, assuming the Intel chips come with the heatsink unattached like AMDs do, it's just a matter of not using the one in the box and getting a different one. (Doesn't even have to be an expensive heatsink, there's great performers around $30. :))

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Post by MikeC » Sat Oct 09, 2010 6:17 am

idale wrote:(Doesn't even have to be an expensive heatsink, there's great performers around $30. :))
There are, but it is not quite as simple as you suggest. It has to be under 110mm tall, and if it's a top-down fan, there has to be at least 10mm clearance, which means effectively 100mm max. Now the great choices shrink to a small handful... several of which I already mentioned.
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