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Thaddiosso 3 months ago

Hey everyone, I've been a PC gamer all my life all starting back in Runescape classic so I feel it's a bit of a travesty I've never made my own PC. To make up for lost time I decided I wanted to challenge myself with a mini-ITX build. I managed to snag an EVGA 1070ti blower GPU on Black Friday for a relatively good price and the German in me wants to strike the perfect balance in portability and maximizing it's exhaust feature.

So far, this is what I have: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/Gd8NTB

I am trying to hold off on buying some RAM sticks as there is a decent chance I will opt away from the RGB light-up strips in favor of a more simple (painted?) pair. I understand I will need 16GB and think I have a decent feel for what I'll get.

What I am having the most trouble doing right now is choosing my case. Initially I was inspired by the ingenuity of Yervand's build on PCPP (https://pcpartpicker.com/b/WHbXsY) & I liked the Rajintek case he used - but I became intimidated once I realized that I would have to mod a side panel for air flow to the GPU on my own & have since abandoned the concept. Since then, I have narrowed my search down to a handful of top contenders and would very much appreciate your thoughts.

High-end option

A4-SFX Dan case (https://www.sfflab.com/products/dan_a4-sfx)

This case is currently at the top of my consideration. I got excited about the concept of potentially having a VR-ready unit that I could throw in my backpack and take over to my mate's house. If I could pull off the build I think it would be quite rewarding & I don't mind taking my time, but there are real concerns about a lack of any serious cable management experience on my part and generally getting in over my head when I have never assembled my own computer from scratch before. That aside, I have read accounts that overclocking a 1080ti in a Dan case gets a bit hot, approaching 90° C. I read on Tom's that the 1070ti was intentionally limited via locking the voltage slider and so naturally that made me think that it might be a good fit (less voltage = less heat right?) but did not find an abundance of builds incorporating my GPU to lend credence to that. I wouldn't mind paying the premium and with this case I would even consider utilizing EVGA's step-up program and getting a nicer model GPU if everything worked out.

Pros: Beautiful & finely engineered case, MFG explicitly recommends a blower fan, About as portable as you can get

Cons: Shipping can be held up in customs, Cost near equivalent to CPU

Other options

NZXT H200i (https://www.nzxt.com/products/h200i-matte-white)

Pros: Nice window for component display, I've heard good things about their build quality (recommended by friend), Straightforward concept which should be easy to work with compared to other options

Cons: A bit boring, Why didn't you get a ROG STRIX?

Phanteks PH-ES217E Evolv Shift (http://www.phanteks.com/Enthoo-Evolv-Shift.html)

Pros: Slick design which reminds me of a small wind tunnel, Appears to be best suited to a blower GPU, Four detachable panels should make the build process smoother

Cons: Read reports of included PCIe 2.0 riser cable causing performance/GPU issues

Honorable mention:

Fractal Design Node 304 (http://www.fractal-design.com/home/product/cases/node-series/node-304-black)

Comments Sorted by:

eesti 1 point 3 months ago

The NEO G MINI is a pretty good option, has good cooling support, great looks, and vertical GPU mounting

Thaddiosso submitter 1 point 3 months ago

Wow! Very interesting case. Reminded me of the Meshify C a bit. I notice that they have a big 3 fan ROG STRIX which is pretty far off of my blower GPU.. but I guess any small form factor would make a case for the exhaust feature. For instance I thought the thermaltake cases were neat but more suited for something like a beefy 3 fan GPU

eesti 1 point 3 months ago

There's a version without the glass front that has a horizontal mount

Thaddiosso submitter 1 point 3 months ago

That version looks great too actually, right up my alley. Unfortunately it looks like it's backordered on Newegg/hard to acquire. I suppose I could use my old Antec case to house my build while I waited