mini-ITX with PCIe 16x support

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Gundy
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mini-ITX with PCIe 16x support

Post by Gundy » Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:45 pm

Hi SPCR!

I currently have a nice, silent Antec Solo build, with an ATI 3870 + Accelero S1.

Last year I moved from Germany to the UK and in December I have my annual gaming weekend coming up.... in Germany. Taking the Solo along by plane, with all its components + other stuff, seems quite impractical.

So here is the challenge: Finding a small as possible and cheap as possible way to house my 3870, preferable with the S1 still attached. My current setup is C2D, but since I do not want to rip my current setup apart I would rather only take things out that go back in easy and fast.

For now I have copied of the SG05 article setup:
Silverstone SG05 housing a Zotac GeForce 9300-ITX WiFi. This alone would set me back roughly 200€. Now add in a C2D + Cooler with roughly another 100€ and the whole excercise would cost me 300€.

I was wondering if you guys know of other motherboards and cases that would fit my needs, but won't set me back that much. An AMD setup should be more cost effective?

Or maybe going mini-ITX is altogether the wrong thing? Should I be going micro-ATX?

Thanks & Best Regards,
Gundy
Last edited by Gundy on Mon Sep 14, 2009 8:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PartEleven
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Post by PartEleven » Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:54 pm

You're paying a price premium by going the mini-ITX form factor. Generally, for the same features a micro-ATX board will be cheaper. It's up to you to decide whether the extra size reduction is worth the extra cost to you. I personally would try to go micro-atx, since the price difference is pretty significant and it's not so bad to carry around a small matx case.

Gundy
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Post by Gundy » Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:44 pm

Thanks for the quick reply.

Any suggestions on a very small mATX cases that could still fit the 3830, perhaps on a raiser?

The SG05 is roughly 10.8 liters. The only mATX case I have worked with so far is the Antec NSK3480 at 25.2 liters.

Looking at Antecs offerings, the NSK1380 comes in at 18.2 liters, still quite big.

BTW: Looking to mount a 3.5" HDD, but no optical drive.

elpibe10
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Post by elpibe10 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:33 pm

Last edited by elpibe10 on Wed Sep 16, 2009 5:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

cordis
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mini-itx with pci-e

Post by cordis » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:35 pm

Well, I was recently looking for boards like this too, I've found that logicsupply.com usually has the widest variety of mini-itx boards. Of course, for a couple of these you'll get a much less powerful processor, but that's the tradeoff you make. So let's see, here's the list:

via nano cpu: http://www.logicsupply.com/products/vb8001_16

intel atom cpu: http://www.logicsupply.com/products/ipx7a_ion330

intel mobile core cpu:
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/ms_9803
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/ms_9642

As far as cases go, that's a little more tricky. You can get this flexible 'riser' card thing:
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/pelx16_c11

which should give you some more options, but even lying flat, you're still going to have trouble with cooling. Cases in this category are probably what you want:
http://www.logicsupply.com/categories/c ... able_cases

This case would be the easiest to cool:

http://www.logicsupply.com/products/668b

but dual 40mm fans, ugh, probably not quiet, but kind of a nice shuttle box size. Of course, in Europe you mind find it easier working with a more local site like http://www.mini-itx.com/store/
It looks like they have the new Silverstone SUGO SG05B Mini-ITX case, that would be a good choice, there's a good review of it on the site here. But anyway, lots of choices, hope this gives you some things to think about.

incorrect
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Post by incorrect » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:37 pm

the mt. jade cases (microatx, fits full-height cards, in-win example here) are 12.3 liters.

they use the cpu cooler's fan as an intake though. but they are workable.

SST Guy
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Re: mini-ITX with PCIe 16x support

Post by SST Guy » Tue Sep 15, 2009 3:19 am

Gundy wrote:This alone would set me back roughly 200€. Now add in a C2D + Cooler with roughly another 100€ and the whole excercise would cost me 300€.
I would recommend that you give the retail box Core 2 Duo cooler a try first before buying one separately. In the SG05, there should be no cooling problems. With this small saving, you would be looking at roughly 270€ instead of 300€. Not much, but I hope this helps!

Spare Tire
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Post by Spare Tire » Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:25 am

If you want µATX and slim, with riser for full size cards, the Lian Li PC-C36 is the only one i know of. However, the PSU is not standard ATX. I think it's rated 300W.
http://www.lian-li.com/v2/en/product/pr ... dex=64&g=f

funklizard
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Re: mini-ITX with PCIe 16x support

Post by funklizard » Tue Sep 15, 2009 3:54 pm

Gundy wrote:I was wondering if you guys know of other motherboards and cases that would fit my needs, but won't set me back that much. An AMD setup should be more cost effective
The Gigabyte GA-2AIEV-RH isn't available quite yet; but it seems worth pointing out in this thread.

Mini-ITX, Socket AM2+, and a PCIe x16 slot (which appears may only be x8 electrically).

Gundy
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Post by Gundy » Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:14 pm

Thanks so much for your input.

Will keep http://www.mini-itx.com/store/ bookmarked.

Going Atom/Via is not really an option performance wise. And going C2D Mobile is pricey.

The In Win BK623 case looks very interesting, though one will probably not get a GPU with S1 fitted in there. 12.5 liters for a mATX is amazing.

Lian-Li PC-C36 at 15.5 liters is also very interesting. Would the GPU with S1 fitted fit in here and still receive enough cooling? Seems doubtful.

Does the SG05 fit the Intel boxed cooler? The SPCR article shows the Alpine 7 Pro barely fitting.

funklizard
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Post by funklizard » Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:32 pm

Gundy wrote:The In Win BK623 case looks very interesting, though one will probably not get a GPU with S1 fitted in there. 12.5 liters for a mATX is amazing.
If you like that one, have a look at the In Win Matrix. These cases follow the Intel "Mt. Jade" thermal reference design, which uses the CPU fan to draw air into the case. As you note, these are remarkably compact mATX enclosures; however, be advised that they do not handle particularly high heat loads well. Also note that your CPU cooler options will be limited to the stock Intel cooler or a very similar design.

The Lian Li PC-A01 is another case that follows this design. Unlike the In Win cases, it accepts a standard ATX power supply (up to 18cm deep, even). And, of course, it's made entirely of aluminum. I have one of these with an Asus Rampage II GENE in it and I love it. Lian Li has discontinued this model; but you can still find it in a few places.

cordis
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s2 is tough

Post by cordis » Tue Sep 15, 2009 10:22 pm

Yeah, the accelero s1 is going to make it really pretty hard. For that, you almost have to have a micro atx case, so you may as well give up on the mini-itx. I have a gtx 285 in a micro atx case (silverstone sg 01) with a thermalright hr 03 gtx heat sink on it, and I still had to take tin snips to the side of the case to allow the heat sink fan to fit. It's going to be tough. You might look at this one http://www.nzxt.com/products/rogue/, it's a little bigger than the standard cube size, but lots of extra ventilation so the s1 will definitely have enough room. If you're not married to super small, but still want cheap, you might think about coolermaster elite 360. The only issue with that case is that there isn't a lot of headroom over the cards, so if the S1 sticks up over the top too much that could be an issue. That's another thing to think about with the mATX cube cases in general, some have the power supply over the cards, some have the power supply over the cpu. I personally like the power supply over the cards, it's hard to keep the cpu cool with a power supply right over it. If the S1 rises above the card, then you'll probably want the power supply over the cpu, sort of like the silverstone sg01. I think there's a newer version of that out, though.

One other note, stay away from cases like this:
http://hi-techreviews.com/reviews_2007/ ... ACK/P1.htm
I have an older version of this one, it looks cool, and it's resonably cheap, but the ventilation just sucks. Find something with some vents all the way along the sides, or some decent airflow paths in general.

Shobai
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Post by Shobai » Wed Sep 16, 2009 1:16 pm

look into the SFF mobos from HP, etc:

C2D, PCIE 16x & 1x, DTX form factor

this little guy takes your 65W e8x00s, just add water/GPU

Gundy
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Post by Gundy » Wed Sep 16, 2009 9:42 pm

Again thanks for your input.

I will take the InWin Matrix into consideration.

Always liked Lian-Li (had the PC-60 when they first started) and at 23.6 liters the PC-A01 is small for the features it has, but I fear too big for this project.

According to this post by leifeinar the S1 fits the SG05 case.

The NZXT Rouge is at 45 liters way too large.

Eddie666
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Post by Eddie666 » Sat Sep 19, 2009 2:00 am

Another good mini-itx motherboard with pci-e 16x is the Commell LV-678

ntavlas
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Post by ntavlas » Sat Sep 19, 2009 3:47 am

I found the zotac motherboard without the wifi module for a 100 euros at pc king.de. If I wanted to build a mini itx gaming rig this is the only board I would go for, jetway amd boards have too many quirks while the gf7100 chipset has only one memory channel.

Gundy
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Post by Gundy » Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:13 am

Found a post by leifeinar on another forum, including some pictures of a S1 in a SG05 case.

Gundy
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Post by Gundy » Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:04 am

The J&W MINIX 780G is quite pricey at ~140€, the Zotac GeForce 9300 is a lot more competitively priced. So as of now this is what I am looking at:

Zotac GeForce 9300-ITX WiFi ~100€
Intel E5200 boxed ~50€
SilverStone Sugo SG05 ~80€
Shipping 20€
------
~250€

Stealing from my Antec Solo:
3870 with S1 fitted
2x1GB DDR2 RAM

By the way, look at the pictures here, someone made an excellent modification to the SG05 PSU cables.

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