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Ross Siggers

I have a Dream...The Dreamcast SFF build!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I love Dreamcasts... Underrated console? Justifiable flop? Poor release timing? Say what you will, but I think they're great, in fact I have 3 of them. But unfortunately, the GD-ROM drive died on my daily driver, and without some costly parts from the modding scene, it wasn't worth resurrecting right now. So I stored it's guts in an anti-static bag, and decided that the case is going to form the basis of my first Small Form Factor build. 

 

Now I've seen DC-PC builds before... but never has there been a clean build, capable of gaming somewhat respectably. Most are from years back, built on ancient hardware, or without dedicated GPU's; The only one that did have one, also had pipes coming out of the side due to an AIO. So that doesn't count imho. Another build had a compelte external desktop PSU...you see what I'm getting at here ;) 

Rough spec 
 

  • STX motherboard. Smaller than ITX, but bigger than a NUC. If you've not heard of it I don't blame you...
  • CPU will be an i5, probably a 6400T to help what will undoubtedly be 'tricky' thermals.
  • PCIe powered GPU. For both simplicity and size, it'll likely be a 1050 mini.
  • 8Gb DDR4, single stick of sodimm, budget as well as space restrictions here.
  • SSD, capacity undecided.
  • External power brick...because I haven't got the space to build that internally.

*EDIT* Actual spec

 

  • ASUS H110-S2 STX Motherboard
  • Skylake i7-6700T, 35w TDP
  • Modified GTX750 mini(upgrade to 1050 or 1060 still planned)
  • 2x4Gb Corsair DDR4 Sodimm
  • SSD capacity...still undecided.
  • DELL 230w brick, combined with a KMPKT Mini internal PSU

I'm currently struggling with the setup of the power delivery, which effects the component selection more than with a normal build. For example, the power delivery I end up going with dictates whether I have an M.2 SSD or I can get away with a separate one and use the onboard slot for WiFi(STX boards all have dual M.2 slots). Also the size inherently means bad thermals, so whilst I want to keep it as original as possible, there's a high possibility of the rear of the console, I/O panel etc being entirely mesh.

 


For anyone wondering, a Dreamcast has an internal volume of just under 2.8L.......so this should be fun... :/ xD

 

***Currently seeking advice over on the Small Form Factor forums, about the viability of this build when using discreet graphics. The space limitations are real....But it'll 100% be built in some form or another, so I guess I can do a brief introduction post about it***

 

DSC_3658.JPG



 

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Looks cool. Following because I fucking love extreme SFF and sleepers.


Quote me to see my reply!

SPECS:

CPU: Xeon X5650 OC'd to 4.4GHz @ 1.36V (courtesy of @XR6) Motherboard: Asus Sabertooth X58 RAM: 4x4GB G.Skill DDR3 1866MHz GPU: XFX R7 370 4GB with an Arctic Twin Turbo II Storage: WD Blue 1tb and a 128GB Kingston UV400 PSU: EVGA 600B Case: Fractal Design Define C Monitor: Dell G2410T and Dell P2210 Mouse: Logitech G403 Prodigy Wireless Keyboard: Cooler Master Masterkeys Pro S (MX Browns) with Varmillo black and grey PBT dye-sub caps Mousepad: Steelseries QcK Headset:  Sennheiser HD 4.40

 

I like Team Fortress 2 and Minecraft. Volvo makes the best cars.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

@kelvinhall05 With my component research, I've been measuring clearances down to millimetres...it'll be ridiculous xD 



 

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@Ross Siggers If you're good at 3D design you can print a shell that looks original but will be bigger and fit your needs

 

Also does mini STX even support external GPU?


Systems:

Main Gaming:                                                        Windows XP:

Ryzen 5 2600                                                               Intel Pentium 3

Asus RX 580 OC                                                     1GB DDR2

Patriot Viper DDR4 8GB                                         Asus Motherboard

Asus ROG B450-I                                                   Dell 300W

Corsair CX 450                                                       ATI Rage 128 Fury Pro

                                                                               

FreeNAS Server:                                                   Windows 98/95 duel boot:

I5 3400k                                                                  Pentium Pro

Patriot DDR3 8GB                                                  HP Vectra motherboard 

Gigabyte Ultra Durable                                           500MB RAM

Rosewill Glacier 600W                                           Soundblaster 16

                                                                               Matrox Mystique

Random PC:                                                         

AMD Phenom x4 850                                          Key:

Kukete A78                                                          Motherboard

Kingston 4GB DDR3                                            Memory

Dell 500W                                                            Power Supply

                                                                             Graphics Card

Other Gaming:                                                    Sound Card

Ryzen 5 2600                                                       Processor

Asus ROG Strix B350-F Gaming

MSI 1050 OC

Hyper-X 16GB DDR4

EVGA 750 B2

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Posted · Original PosterOP

@BLLDoesTech I mean, not the worst idea. But if you're 3D printing a scaled up case...is it really a sleeper build anymore? Or rather a themed or imitation case? The whole challenge is putting it into an original case :) 

Also STX does work with external GPU's but because they lack PCIe slots, you use a powered riser from the M.2 slot instead. Someone else on the Small Form Factor forum has done it, and it runs at Gen3 x4 speed apparently. 



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Although the spec hasn't been finalised, the shell can be prepped for components.

The main issue is vertical space. The top of the Dreamcast isn't flat, but thankfully it's tallest in the centre and tapers downwards on the front corners. Rear corners are tall, and contain the hinge mechanism which doesn't stretch across the rear of the console. So in theory, the rear of the case can be cut away from floor to ceiling, whilst still retaining a functional lid :) With the lid on, maximum build height will be just under 70mm

 

DSC_3738.JPG

 

DSC_3745.JPG

 

So far I've been planning the build using simple paper mock-ups of components, and the STX motherboard sits beautifully right at the bottom of the case without even having to cut away the modem cavity. This is the essential advantage over ITX, whilst the larger board would fit within the overall dimensions, it would have to sit higher up in the wider part of the case, meaning there'd be no hope of fitting a GPU and leaving wasted space below it. I have a paper cut out labelled as a 1050 mini, but the 750 mini has identical dimensions and even the same cooler, so that will be butchered in the process of planning this build. Not to mention I've not bought a 1050 yet...and that it also costs 3-4 times as much...

 

DSC_3743.JPG

 

The plan today was to remove anything unnecessary plastic that intruded on internal space. Which meant the disc tray cavity, and the significant 'lip' on the edge of the lid, had to go. I also need to trim all the stand-offs in the bottom half of the case, but I'm putting that off just incase some of them are useful for mounting once I decide on a motherboard.

 

DSC_3740.JPG

 

 

DSC_3770.JPG

DSC_3775.JPG

 

The latch has been left there, but the portion of the mechanism on the case itself is very bulky so that may have to be rethought into a new, smaller mechanism, Which would also help in fitting a larger cooling fan into the default fan slot, which is definitely going to be required, so win-win.

 

 



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Is consecutive posting still frowned upon if it's a build thread, and you've got loads of images? 🤨

Anyway, after a bit of trimming, this was the result. A smooth ceiling, and 15mm gained in vertical space. With the exception of stand-offs in the bottom which I'm not removing yet, we're getting close to our maximum 70mm of clearance.I'll definitely still tidy up the edges of my cuts, probably further down the line once all the case modifications have been complete. I want to get it looking as good inside as possible.

 

DSC_3786.JPG

DSC_3787.JPG

 

 

I also trimmed the bracket for the placeholder GTX 750 mini. While the card will remain almost it's full height, the card will be easier to place correctly in the case with the shallower bracket. It will probably lose it entirely in the end, to maximise airflow. Every little helps....

 

 

DSC_3790.JPG

DSC_3791.JPG

 

I also removed the shroud and stuck the fan directly onto the heatsink. Only saved minuscule amounts on the height, but more importantly it let me remove the shroud which was quite boxy;

2338706-l-d.jpg

 

That's all folks!! I probably won't have an update now until I've decided upon and/or bought more components.



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Actually we may be onto something already. I better start saving for components xD 

 

I spoke up on the Small Form Factor forum, with my question regarding power for the build. I ended up hearing from a member called Kmpkt, who seems to be a partner of the site, and manufactures what sounds like the perfect solution. I was initially planning to use an external brick, with an HDPLEX 160 internally, from which I would run all my power cables.

 

HDPLEX-160W-DC-ATX-new-2-810x486.jpg.0f7269ba12684c434dd0279bb8914233.jpg
^HDPLEX 160w 

 

But as you can see, this is really designed for Mini-ITX, with 24-pin and EPS power plugs built in. Because STX motherboards are run off of DC barrel jacks, this would have been tucked into a corner away from the board, with an adapter cable running a DC barrel connector, to the motherboard.

 

What Kmpkt was suggesting, whilst being his own product, actually makes sense. The KMPKT Dynamo 360 is a similar idea but better suited to my needs. It still takes DC power, from an external brick. But it does away with the standard motherboard power connectors, and he said it comes with the adapter in the box, to pass power out to the motherboard using a barrel-style connector. It's designed for just this kind of application, STX boards, and also 'Thin' ITX boards, which also use DC barrel connectors.

 

DYN360W_01_1500x1500_259e8738-fb6b-4b31-a1d1-413601922ae9_1280x1280.jpg.8874741dd6721f1e9889589ba39e0631.jpg

^Kmpkt Dynamo 360

 

The downside is that this board is obviously slightly larger. But paired with a sufficient external power brick, it should give me plenty of headroom(should I be brave enough to upgrade, without having to re-think my entire power solution), and it fits almost perfectly into the modem area that already exists in the case. I was previously planning on shoving the HDPLEX somewhere near the front, and I wasn't sure what to do with the modem area. I guess this kinda solves my problem! :D I'll try and get away with not completely cutting the section out, just adding access holes for wires etc. I'm a sucker for organisation, and having an seperate PSU compartment sounds lovely... 

 

But just like the stand-offs on the bottom of the case, this is a hurdle we'll have to cross when we actually get the components.

 

20 hours ago, Ross Siggers said:

 

DSC_3743.JPG

 

 



 

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Hey, I recognize your build log from SFF Forums. I was really sure I was looking at a Dreamcast (or what's left of it) from the first pictures of the shell.


Since you're reducing the 750 Ti to one slot, are you placing you own slim fan above its heatsink? Or will there be a fan placed on its front or side? I'm just guessing since you'll probably keep the lid on that case.


Kind of a bummer you won't go with an internal power supply, because for your needs you can get by easily with 150 watts and you can find one that can fit in easily. You might need some help though with wiring it up, such as TheHack over at SFF.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

@ccRicers oh hey! Ram guy is also Robotnik guy! Small world :D

 

Yeah, I didn't want to make a full build thread on SFF until I'd gotten all my queries out of the way, but now I've got the PSU sorted I should be fine. Plus I'm far more active on here, what I'll probably do is just copy the posts over if I do a build thread there :)

 

The gpu isn't strictly single slot, but making the backplate lower profile helps with fitting. It's still got the original cooler, but the shroud had to be removed because the square corner interfered with the latch for the lid. Chances are you'll need the lid open when gaming, unlike other SFF builds you can't put perforated side panels everywhere unfortunately. If you have any tips on low profile coolers that'd work I'm all ears, I've seen smaller coolers from other cards fitted and the thermals were atrocious. I thought about a laptop style fan and heatpipe setup for either cpu or gpu but the complexity vs performance would be awful as well 

 

It's hard to describe the layout at the moment, but hopefully I'll be taking the plunge on buying the motherboard soon so that will help visualise things a bit better. Its a case of, I have it in my head, but can't 3D model for shit xD

 

I took the plunge on the Dynamo 360, I did initially want an AC-DC internally, but I just... Don't have the space. 2.8L dude :/ But I get what you mean about power draw, that's why I was originally looking at an HDPLEX DC-ATX 160...if I could work out how to jump the pins on the 24-pin connector, and make it work safely whilst disconnected...I may still go down to one. We'll see if I can package the Dynamo in the model slot like I planned.



 

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I know some people have hacked on short coolers onto GPUs but I don't have experience with that either. You either have to zip-tie the heatsink tightly or drill holes into the bottom to line up with the holes on the card. That a mod I haven't attempted and I'd rather just remove the stock cooler and have a case fan blow sideways into it, but that's just me.

 

The current version of the HDPLEX DC-ATX has two pins that you can jumper, to power on the system without needing to plug it into a motherboard 24-pin.

 

160W.DC-ATX.0.jpg

 

However with all said and done, you already have the Dynamo 360. Now that I don't know if you can jumper in a similar fashion for a power-on mode. I see two small jumper pairs on the Dynamo but I don't know what they do, but you can ask @Kmpkt for assistance.

 

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
On 11/14/2018 at 8:04 PM, ccRicers said:

The current version of the HDPLEX DC-ATX has two pins that you can jumper, to power on the system without needing to plug it into a motherboard 24-pin.

 

However with all said and done, you already have the Dynamo 360. Now that I don't know if you can jumper in a similar fashion for a power-on mode. I see two small jumper pairs on the Dynamo but I don't know what they do, but you can ask @Kmpkt for assistance.

Well fuck. I don't know how I missed the power button jumper on the board. The Dynamo 360 I believe can power on without a sync cable because it plugs directly to the motherboard. 

But ever since I put the order in, I've been thinking I should just have gone with the original plan, and pick up an HDPLEX 160 and use an adapter cable to take it's EPS/4pin power plug, and convert it to a DC barrel to power the motherboard. Or split the DC power into two separate jacks, and have one go to the HDPLEX, and the other direct to the board. But I can't find a splitter beefy enough, only the smaller DC barrel diameters...either it's not advisable to do, or I have to try and make my own cable.

 

I got my CPU cooler today, with the motherboard arriving next week hopefully. Good news and bad news....well, actually just bad news. I was probably too tight with my tolerances, because with the GPU and cooler literally stacked inside the case, they only just fit. The thing is, the cooler isn't the tallest part of the motherboard...the RAM is, by about 5mm more. Not to mention the backplate for the CPU adding another mm or two. I wish angled sodimm mounts was a thing, not just vertical or flat...imagine 45* ram slots...🤓 I mean it'd solve my issues xD 

DSC_3777.thumb.JPG.8644cc0e341e3d69f4edd94a1b222e26.JPG

 

The black bit in the middle of the picture is the GPU fan peeking out of the top of the case. It still fits because the Dreamcast lid is slightly curved.

DSC_3778.thumb.JPG.813db650c6839dc49c81cbfafe5366d2.JPGDSC_3779.thumb.JPG.f8233f7262f86c9f8ac7b9a8fcbc5478.JPG

 

You can see how intrusive that latch mechanism is. I'm going to chop it off and come up with a more compact solution.

 

The problematic RAM slots are positioned central enough on the motherboard that there's no way we can avoid them sitting beneath the pcb of the GPU. No Tetris here I'm afraid. So once I get the motherboard and RAM, I can mock it all up and start to figure this one out...the most obvious solution is a slimmer fan or cooler on the GPU, so that's what I'll be looking into first. But I don't want to compromise the cooling too much as this is a mock-up card; I'll be using a 1050ti Mini eventually, which as the same style cooler on it.

 

In other news, I was thinking about layout the other day and decided(even before taking these pictures) that thermal throttling on the CPU would be too much of a concern this way. Unlike other SFF builds where everything is perforated, this is a bit less flexible...So what I'm now thinking is the motherboard will be oriented downwards, so I can have a circular duct in the floor for completely isolated fresh air intake. It'll be invisible to the casual observer, make the setup run considerably cooler and maybe quieter...and hey, maybe I can even cut holes and hang the ram out the bottom of the case to get more clearance  xD 



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

So I think I came up with a solution for my clearance(Clarence!) problem. I was googling around for aftermarket coolers for GPU's, not really having success outside of waterblocks for full-size cards. I looked at my CPU cooler, a lower-than-low-profile Silverstone NT07-115X; It sits a mere 23mm off the motherboard.

"Why not just use a low profile CPU cooler...on my GPU?"

 

DSC_3785.thumb.JPG.2375d290b31a0250f7c007a4ac3fa635.JPG

 

DSC_3784.thumb.JPG.ddd1ad563c7a137d319b0b01fd99192c.JPG

So I marked out the mounting holes for my GTX750, they're 42x42mm. Far smaller than any processor mount, but I chucked it up against the Silverstone cooler and it might just work. The metal arms are flat where the mounting holes would need to go...they're thick enough that I reckon I could tap threads into them...and if I cut the legs off the cooler, it would clear the board perfectly, whilst having, in theory, even mounting pressure. 


DSC_3786.thumb.JPG.2b27a3face875b4d1605845a33c518e2.JPG

 

DSC_3799.thumb.JPG.88c7d1b47ae2f10cf7823b1b195d4d23.JPG

 

It's also almost 10mm lower profile than the regular GTX750 one, which in my world is HUGE xD That should be enough to solve all of space issues, so I'll definitely make this cooler swap a priority then test fit everything at once. The GTX750 uses the single piece cast block, whilst the Silverstone has cast fins, with a nice large copper core. So despite having a smaller fan, I think it may be pretty similar when it comes to cooling potential. If I do upgrade to the 1050 mini, that uses the same cooler as the 750 so I should only have to make one of these Frankenstein contraptions, and then reuse it with the better card, which is a nice bonus.

I just need to convert the 4-wire PMW on the Silverstone, to a more simplistic 2-wire setup to work with the graphics card. Because 2-wire fans have their RPM changed by tweaking the power delivery, and the two have significantly different ratings(12v*0.55a against 12v*0.26a), there will be some confusion with the fan speed should it work. My guess is, the smaller fan will go beserk! But this should be solveable by using a manual fan curve in MSI Afterburner, and dropping all the values down a bit.

Anyone feel free to jump in with advice on that last point. Making the cooler I'm fine with, but as you can probably tell from my previous updates, wiring is not my strong point... 



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

If I am worried about altering the pwm fan just for it to blow up...a lot of regular sized graphics cards with non-reference coolers use a similar fan, but with a slightly higher amp rating. Instead of putting 0.55A into a fan designed for 0.26A....I could buy one of the same dimensions, but rated to 0.35A which sounds a bit more likely to work.

Here's an example. There are tons on eBay.



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

The cpu cooler fits into the exsisting fan hole in the gpu shroud.

 

I'm sad, because I have to cut a few fins off near the logo, to clear capacitors and I DON'T WANNA because it looks SO DAMN COOL

 

 

DSC_3803.jpg

DSC_3816.JPG



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Well aren't you adorable... 

DSC_3823.JPG



 

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That is a super tight fit with the CPU cooler! The aluminum on the heatsink would make me nervous having it so close to the board of the GPU. That is a pretty nifty GPU cooler mod, though. They could have totally sold these cards as single slot but I guess it was cheaper to make a heatsink that isn't as dense.

 

I used this 21mm CPU cooler with my thin ITX board. It is 2mm shorter than that Silverstone you have, and it works pretty well. It's a blower cooler but very quiet at typical RPMs (usually have it 50% to 60% speed under load). It's a pretty good deal for me. Caveat: This cooler is sent from China and I had to wait several weeks to get mine.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
18 hours ago, ccRicers said:

That is a super tight fit with the CPU cooler! The aluminum on the heatsink would make me nervous having it so close to the board of the GPU. That is a pretty nifty GPU cooler mod, though. They could have totally sold these cards as single slot but I guess it was cheaper to make a heatsink that isn't as dense.

 

I used this 21mm CPU cooler with my thin ITX board. It is 2mm shorter than that Silverstone you have, and it works pretty well. It's a blower cooler but very quiet at typical RPMs (usually have it 50% to 60% speed under load). It's a pretty good deal for me. Caveat: This cooler is sent from China and I had to wait several weeks to get mine.

I feel like if this cooler works on the graphics card, I won't have any more issues with space. Fingers crossed, the 10mm saved should give me the clearance I need.

When you say it makes you nervous, are you talking about the metal feet contacting the board? Because it's looking like the way it'll attach this shouldn't happen. The copper contact plate protrudes slightly below the points where I'll be putting my threaded holes, and the die on the pcb obviously sits slightly above it with a plastic lip around it. So the metal feet should not press against the board when mounting. Although now you mention it, I'll make sure to grind things back wherever possible...and maybe paint the legs? Or put squares of electrical tape onto the board beneath them? Hmm.

Dammit that blower cooler is EXACTLY the sort of thing I was looking for, without any luck. What processor are you using, and at what temps? I'll be using the i5-6400T for a 35w TDP.



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

To all of those who are following this thread, I APPRECIATE YOU!! Secondly, anyone have a preference on an update schedule? I post pretty regularly, with little bits of info. Would people prefer I be more structured, and I post less regularly, but actually show significant steps in the build?

Sidenote; I planned an i5-6400T but accidentally put down an offer on a i7-6700T. Whoops. 
*EDIT* I accidentally won the 6700 on eBay. Double whoops...
 



 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

So I got the custom cooler for the graphics card mostly made today. The good news is, all the Dremel work went well and the mounting holes appear to line up. Which is good because I eyeballed them using the paper template xD The bad news is, the internet lied to me. The drillbit I got was slightly too large, so the original mounting screws are a loose fit, even before tapping a thread into the holes. Oh, also they're slightly too short to reach the holes I drilled out.

That just means I have to get some new hardware(as in screws, not components). So of all the things that could have gone wrong, I think it went well! :) 

 

DSC_3892.thumb.jpg.5d67300dae2b055b768ca9aee8c2e76c.jpg

^ Befoooooreee...

 

DSC_3894.thumb.jpg.f3f359c7278f033ad3bb26fddd48fa6d.jpg

^ After!!

 

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I then trimmed a few fins off, so it could sit directly over the die without clashing with capacitors, as well as trimming the plastic shroud down to be the same height as the rest of the components. The card has now gone from a 2-slot, down to a 1.5-slot, although you'd be mistaken for thinking it was more given the drastic change in side profile...although not assembled fully yet, I had to throw the shroud and cooler on, and take a look.

It's hard to tell in this lighting, but if I do say so myself, this thing looks super sleek in it's new low profile guise! ;) 

 

DSC_3914.thumb.jpg.e5d90ed28e22620bd414646adea2e692.jpg

 

DSC_3928.thumb.jpg.0c32b19583429cfb561efc6c6f9e3e6d.jpg

 

test-system-645x430.jpg.621b2e33dbca364554ee1a1cd6c3cb33.jpg

^A photo of the regular card. What a fatboi

 



 

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Have you considered looking on ebay for a cpu cooler from an all in one prebuilt computer? Majority are pretty compact and blower style so that would be nice for just getting the heat from the cpu directly out of the dreamcast shell. :)


 

Spoiler

Senor Shiny: Main- CPU Intel i7 6700k 4.7GHz @1.42v | RAM G.Skill TridentZ CL16 3200 | GPU Asus Strix GTX 1070 (2100/2152) | Motherboard ASRock Z170 OC Formula | HDD Seagate 1TB x2 | SSD 850 EVO 120GB | CASE NZXT S340 (Black) | PSU Supernova G2 750W  | Cooling NZXT Kraken X62 w/Vardars
Secondary (Plex): CPU Intel Xeon E3-1230 v3 @1.099v | RAM Samsun Wonder 16GB CL9 1600 (sadly no oc) | GPU Asus GTX 680 4GB DCII | Motherboard ASRock H97M-Pro4 | HDDs Seagate 1TB, WD Blue 1TB, WD Blue 3TB | Case Corsair Air 240 (Black) | PSU EVGA 600B | Cooling GeminII S524

Spoiler

(Deceased) DangerousNotDell- CPU AMD AMD FX 8120 @4.8GHz 1.42v | GPU Asus GTX 680 4GB DCII | RAM Samsung Wonder 8GB (CL9 2133MHz 1.6v) | Motherboard Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z | Cooling EVO 212 | Case Rosewill Redbone | PSU EVGA 600B | HDD Seagate 1TB

DangerousNotDell New Parts For Main Rig Build Log, Señor Shiny  I am a beautiful person. The comments for your help. I have to be a good book. I have to be a good book. I have to be a good book.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

@Darkman I did toy with the idea, briefly looking at parts from Lenovo prebuilts, but I couldn't find much about them, and was worried about their cooling potential.  You can see @ccRicers has linked one a few posts further up, which does look good admittedly. 

 

I eventually concluded that a normal low profile solution would be best. The cooler isn't a limiting factor as all my options are lower than the ram sticks. The cooler will get direct air from outside the case, and in the final build the cpu and gpu will be in seperate compartments both running positive pressure. A heavily vented case back, and small exhaust fan in the front corner should help. Honestly cooling has always been a concern, so we may need to add more fans. But not much can be changed layout wise. 

 



 

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Cool idea, I didn't even know mini-STX was a thing, let alone socketed and PCIe capable, cant wait to see how the build goes. 


Current:

Dell Precision M6700:

- CPU: i7-3720qm @ 3.8Ghz all cores
- GPU: K3000M "Gigahertz Edition" 1006Mhz Core, 2004Mhz MEM
- RAM: 16GB (2x8GB) HyperX Impact @ 1600Mhz
- Storage: 256GB mSATA w/ 2x750GB HDDs in RAID 0
- Display: Samsung LTN173HT02 120Hz 1080p internal display
Old:
- Custom Desktop w/ i5 4430 and RX480
- Inspiron 7559 w/ i5 6300hq and 4GB 960M (SOLD)

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