Description

Here is the second dual E5-2670 machine I recently built (I made three in total, for three friends) (see the first one here). This rig features really compact size - the very popular NZXT S340 ATX mid tower, which is merely 38.4 liters.

The dual Xeon E5 motherboard I used, Gigabyte GA-7PESH1, is a large server board in SSI EEB form factor (12x13 in). Only a proportion of ATX full towers (typically 70+ liters) officially support such big boards. But S340, tiny but mighty, does the job well. I found this secret of S340 a while ago, and used this case for three of my dual Xeon builds (see my other work, caution: Chinese). It fits an SSI EEB board almost seamlessly, with just enough room in the front for water coolers (I put dual Corsair H60's in one build).

The most notable advantage of matching a server board with S340 is the optimal air flow direction. In contrast to consumer's motherboards, server boards are designed for extremely strong air flow in horizontal direction - it blows across the entire surface of the motherboard to cool down on-board chips, mosfets and other stuff. Consumer's cases are not typically designed for that purpose, but S340, with two giant 140mm fans blowing from right beside the board, meets this goal perfectly.

To install an SSI EEB board into a S340, you will have to deal with the three screw holes on the right edge of the motherboard. Apparently, S340 does not have these in its blueprint. My solution is to DIY an acrylic board to hold the right side of the motherboard (see the pictures). This isn't the easiest thing to do. I included the layout of my acrylic board (see picture). Note that this layout works for this particular motherboard only, and you may need some adjustments to fit other motherboards.

Then everything is easy. Here I intensionally picked parts with a blue tone. Every piece of PCB in this machine is blue. So are the SSDs and the CPU coolers. I am not a fan of case lighting (especially blue light), but the Deepcool Gammaxx 400 was simply cheap during the Black Friday, plus their square outline matches the case well.

One more trick for dual CPU workstation build is that, as far as I know, XFX TS-550 is the lowest wattage PSU that natively provides two 8-pin EPS12V cables for two CPUs. 550W is sufficient for two high-end E5 Xeons plus a mid-range video card.

Finally I want to mention that despite being cheap, the motherboard does not come with an I/O shield. I had to DIY one using thin plastic sheet (see pictures).

Hope you like it, and happy holiday!

Comments

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Very nice build! +1

I might just want to do this for my second build... in a few years :(

Happy holidays

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Great! Good luck on yours!

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

I like it, very nicely done! :-)

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you!

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey Bud- I think you are a little off on your prices :D the Xeons are not 150-- they are 1500. Overall great job though! Enjoy it!

  • 42 months ago
  • 2 points

They are $150, or less. Enter "E5-2670" in eBay and you will see how cheap they are now in Dec. 2015.

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  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

He's right, the 2.6 GHz can be found for $150

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

So much ram

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

hey does anybody know if this MoBo will fit into the define r5? And the s340 I a awesome case.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

I think When you take out all the drive cages + odd cages it should fit with a bit of modding

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

ya that what I was thinking but I can always fall back to the s340, And which is better define s or define 5 ,

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

if you just want a normal case take the define r5. if you want to go crazy with water cooling take the define s

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

What a great case, I still use this case for my build. Didn't know you could fit a WS mobo in there! What are you using the computers for?

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

ohh nice! I also have the same gift saber figure :D

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Your builds are inspiring.

Happy New Year

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

One of the best builds on pcpartpicker. Great job getting that huge motherboard in such a small case, and making it look nice! You've inspired my next build. +1

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you! Hope you enjoy building your machine!

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

im thinking about doing a build with duel xeon e5 2670. would you recommend? it would be used for running servers and gaming. i know xeons are not the best for gaming but ive always wanted a xeon. i can get two used xeons on ebay for $121 which is a good deal.

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

here is the build i made> http://pcpartpicker.com/list/2ZbgLD

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Yes I highly recommend! Dual CPU machine is just COOL! In addition to my works, please check out this link. You will love it!

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi Thomas, Looks very nice. I'm planning to do the same with a z9pe-d8 ws. The layout is the same except for the row at the power connectors. Can you tell me, how thick is the acrylic sheet you used? And did you drill the middle hole? I couldn't see that one predrilled in the s340.

thanks Jurian

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Hello jurweer, thanks! The acrylic sheet was the .093 in one off Home Depot. I had to drill all holes. A 7/64 drill bit plus a 6-32 tap bit will do the job. Hope you enjoy the process!

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

thanks for your reply! your response on the comment below mine, to bucholtzrd, made me look into the Rosewill Rise Glow. It think im going to buy that case as the mod seems even less for the Z9PE-D8 than with the S340. As far as I can see, only 2 holes would need to be drilled into the motherboard tray, on the right bottom of the board, above and below the SATA connections.

since you have a built with the Rise, could you verify which holes would need to be drilled? thanks for the info! jurweer

(also found this as inspiration: http://www.anandtech.com/show/7027/computex-2013-rosewill) second picture.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi jurweer, Actually you need to handle more than two holes. The top edge of the motherboard is completely in the air. In the post https://www.chiphell.com/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=1362616 I had a picture showing the holes I punctured and created. Not merely drilling work. But you will like it once it's done.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

@thomasz Would you happen to know of any mid tower case that your fit the SuperMicro X9DRi-LN4F+Form Factor Enhanced Extended ATX (EE ATX), Dimensions 13.68" x 13" (34.7cm x 33cm). Thanks,

Richard

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Yes I happen to know! Check out my other work here: https://www.chiphell.com/thread-1362616-1-1.html. I used Rosewill Rise Glow, because it is small (~55L).

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank You so much!

  • 30 months ago
  • 1 point

Great build! :D

I've just finished building a workstation with a single Xeon E5-2670.

Xeon E5-2670 Home Workstation

What are the idle and load temperatures of your E5-2670s with the Deepcool GAMMAXX 400 Air Cooler?

I'm thinking of swapping out my Deepcool Maelstrom 120K AIO Water Cooler for a Deepcool GAMMAXX 400 Air Cooler due to some reliability issues. However, I still need to find out if it would fit with my motherboard's huge VRM heat sink. :(

Thanks!

  • 30 months ago
  • 2 points

Hi kieru, Thanks! I don't know the answers to your question, unfortunately, since the machine was out of my hand right after it was built. My experience told me that Gammaxx 400 can well hold E5-2670.

  • 30 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

The only thing that I need to worry about now is if it would fit the socket due the huge VRM heatsink near it.

  • 27 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey thomasz, I came across another of what I think was one of your builds, in which you had a fan cooler mounted to the southbridge. Was that your build, or if not, do you have any recomendations for better cooling of the southbridge? Thanks!

  • 27 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, I can't tell if that is my build without a link or image. I used to use chipset heatsink and fans. I don't think South bridge is a big issue. Typically it generates very small amount of heat.

  • 27 months ago
  • 1 point
  • 27 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi oldschoolhas, Yes this was my build. That huge chipset cooler is for the north bridge (not south bridge). Back in the LGA1366 age, north bridge generates lots of heat. But later when we have LGA2011, there are no more north / south bridges, but only one chipset, which is much cooler. Thus you don't have to worry much about cooling it down.

  • 19 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, very nice build,

I am looking for two E5-2670, someone can tell me if is any problem to buy 2 processors of same person on Ebay or should i look for something like "matched pair"?

Thanks!!

  • 19 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi there, in my experience with 10+ dual Xeon builds, two processors of the same model without being advertised as "matched pair" never caused any problem.

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

Thomas, do you think the nzxt s340 elite is still the most compact tower for EEB boards? I need space for 5 3.5 inch drives and I think I can make it work by modding the basement and line up 5 drives vertically down there. Is there another compact case you are aware of that can natively handle 5 hard drives?

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi bran, I think S340 is still one of the most compact EEB case. Corsair 400Q or 400C is slightly larger, and perhaps has room for you to "hang" two additional hard drives under the ceiling. Silverstone GD09 is even smaller but may not be ventilative enough for a dual CPU power build.

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

The 400c seems a bit smaller than s340 by definitely not as much space for drives. My concerns with theses cases are the front bezel. I might have to meshify a s340 then.

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

By the way your builds are inspiring. Kudos. Also the gammaxx 400 is a brilliant cooler for dual cpu boards due to the optimized airflow. It's out performing the NH-C14S for me on a E5-2680v2. Shockingly good for a $15 cooler.

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

I can't believe that Gammaxx 400 outperforms NH-C14S... But... do you happen to have two NH-C14S units for sale?

  • 18 months ago
  • 1 point

Haha. No I only have 1. And it would cost a lot to ship to the US.

I was getting 58 C prime 95 26.6 20 threads on the C14s. 55 on gammaxx. Granted the gammaxx was running on higher rpm on the same pwm, but it wasn't loud at all, and it didn't blow air in a radial direction.

Can't overclock these Ivy bridge xeons at all, gammaxx can handle the stock tdp perfectly fine. I'm going to use the NH-C14S for a Power Mac g3 conversion.

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