- Pentium D 820 2.8GHz
Asus P5LD2-VM Socket 775
OCZ GX XTC PC2-5400 1GB 2X512MB DDR2 CL4-4-4-12
Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 160GB ST3160812AS
ATI Radeon X800 XL
I liked the idea of positive pressure for such a small case and after reading about it on the forums, I settled with two 120mm side intakes. The fans are ordinary Coolermaster 120mm blue LED fans. Nothing fancy; they're automatically controlled by Speedfan and run between 811-959RPM depending on the CPU heat/load. The PSU fan was swapped out and all the grills were cut out to reduce restriction as much as possible; the PSU fan runs at 5V.
An aerial view. Because the NSK1300 has the vent above PSU & CPU, I noticed a lot of air was exiting through that vent and probably not staying in the case long enough to cool the hot components. So, I taped up any holes within the DVD & harddrive cage. The black foam tape you see is some left-over weather stripping for our front door and it helps prevent air from flowing above the cage; there's a 1-2cm gap between the top and that cage.
I tried to keep the inside as tidy as possible to optimize the airflow. I purchased some polypropylene spiral wrapping at Home Depot and wrapped whatever I could to keep it clean. You'll also notice I taped up a portion of the vents to prevent the flow from exiting there and directing it right towards the CPU. I also cut out every other strip from the vents to open it up and allow any airflow from the CPU to exit there; it's still quite small but I think it helps a bit than the original side panel design (look at the second image to see how little air flows through).
It's not the best design to positively cool a computer since there are two obstructions in it's way (e.g. wireless card) but it still works fairly good. Optimally, no obstructions would be nice since it would help minimize any noise from the air hitting anything directly in it's path. From the picture, it would appear the air flows left and down through the case, hits the side panel and routes toward the CPU and out through the I/O shield; I had it removed to allow any trapped hot air escape as easy as possible. The way the PSU is situated, the vent that is supposed to exhaust the air can't do it at a fast enough rate.
Another inside look. You might notice on the left a small device with some 3-pin wires. It's an extended cooling system device that allows the fans run at 5V after the computer has been shut down; works kind of like a turbo timer. You can also see my attempt to keep wires out of the way by taping 'em down with some electrical tape.
Another inside angle.
I should have done more research before buying this harddrive! SPCR reviewed the ST3160812AS a while back and I'm sure many of you have heard the sound recording. Well, it sounds pretty dead on to me. I really don't like the seeks. The idle isn't too whiny but still audible enough that it bothers me. This'll be the next thing I replace.
I used some of the weather stripping here too. I had to bend the cage outwards a bit to fit the harddrive with the foam. The case came with some rubber grommets so I used those as well to help reduce vibrations. Suspending is not really nice in this case; it's just way too small and hard to incoporate without it looking ugly or affecting the airflow. So, this is what I thought would help.
The CPU was undervoted to 1.1825V (lowest possible on motherboard). Specs indicate it should normally run between 1.25-1.40V, so it really helped a lot in keeping temperatures down and I haven't experienced any problems with it set that low yet. After playing Counter-Strike: Source for an hour, while still being comfortably quiet, it never reaches past 52C. One thing I noticed is if I cover the top vent (as seen in the first picture with my green XP book), the idle temperatures will be what you see. But if I remove it, the CPU will idle at around 40C.
If I were to do another SFF, I'd probably go with Ultra's Microfly because it's layout for cooling and airflow is a lot better than Antec's Aria/NSK1300.