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Mini Me !

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by ALXAndy, 20 Jun 2021.

  1. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Hey boys. Not been around for a while. The state of the industry has pushed me into other hobbies tbh. I noticed a couple of weeks ago that hardware was becoming more available and CPUs etc were cheaper again.

    As you will all remember I built Mike Tyson last. OK so you don't remember, that's cool :D Mike Tyson.

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    Long story short it has a 3950x and a 2080Ti Kingpin in. It's very fast.

    It replaced this PC.

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    Which has a 1920x in it I picked up dirt cheap, a X399 Aorus and now has a 2080ti Aorus Xtreme in. It was supposed to come to my mother's house where I spend time gaming etc. However, it's so heavy there is no way to move it without damaging it. So, I am stuck using this.

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    I say stuck but basically it too is a 1920x with 16gb RAM and a 2070 Super. However, pretty much the only game I ever play now is PUBG and I like my res and settings high and thus on the 2070S rig it feels different. Not as responsive etc. I'm not sure what to put it down to. Either the GPU or the lack of IPC on the TR. The TR in the rig above is running stock, as one of the rads broke and there wasn't enough cooling density to keep it overclocked. However let's face it, a gen 1 Ryzen is going to get spanked by a 3950x no matter what you do. Is it the CPU? probably. Is it the GPU? well, I know from simple equations that the 2070s ain't no 2080Ti. So it's probably both.

    So the idea for mini me. Well, the rig here is massive. The room here is tiny. I am getting sick of it tbh. I want to cull some electronics, pack away the water cooling gear and just have a small rig that doesn't eat space. However, there are two requirements. 1, get it as close as I can in performance to the one at home so I don't need to spend hours retraining my brain for the performance drop and 2, make it smaller. Much smaller.

    The problem here is logistics. I don't have the thermal pads to be able to remove the Aorus from the Alienware and just like, use it. So I have ordered two sheets of pads both in 0.5mm and 1mm. I got them here on OCUK.

    So step one will be to convert the Aorus Xtreme back to air.

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    I am 99% sure those are the correct thicknesses (0.5 and 1mm) I say that because this is the page from EK where they show you how to fit a block and which pads to use.

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    I also found a video where a guy strips one and...

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    Now what I do know is that Gigabyte correctly designed the cold plate to make full contact, and did not put a 8mm pad on that just runs into the fins. You can see there that they look pretty thin. If they are 1.5? I can double up some 0.5 and 1 to make it correct thickness.

    OK. So for RAM? I am going to yoink 16gb of those Dom plats. This will not render that Alienware unusable. Which is good. I don't want to just pull gear out of it and leave it there like a soldier who lost both of his legs in Iraq.

    OK, so we have a decent GPU and we have RAM. The rig here with the 2070s is being stripped down. At which point I will dry off the WC gear and pack it away, probably sell the board and CPU, sell the RAM and sell the 2070s or just keep that as a spare. IDK. What I do want out of the rig is the hard drives (2tb 2.5 Firecuda, 1tb SATA SSD and a 256 Force NVME). I may also yoink one of the 1tb SSD from the Alienware as that thing has about 7 SSDs in. Again it won't stop it working.

    So, let's talk about new hardware. Well, firstly I bought these the other day. I was going to put them in the Alienware, as currently everything in there is Bitspower apart from the fans. Those are BQ.

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    That was mathematical :D I bought four. However, the new case I ordered takes 4 fans, so they will be used in the new build.

    So sticking to what I know. The past three boards I have used have all been AMD based Gigabyte Aorus and man, Gigabyte really upped their game. So I found this for £100.

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    Which I am more than happy with. It's gorgeous to look at and supports what I wanted. For the CPU I chose a 3600.

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    As with a slight manual push this should match the gaming capacity of the 3950x. Either way it is two gens newer than any other CPU I have (apart from the 3950x) and thus will be much better for gaming.

    The Aorus PSU I have makes a ticking sound. Works perfectly, but yeah, makes a ticking sound. That isn't why I am changing it though. I am changing it because it has caps on the power cables. Which are annoying and ugly. I got round this by using extensions, however in a ITX case there isn't going to be room for that.

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    OK so it is time to finally reveal the case. I chose the Jonsbo V10. I absolutely adore pretty much anything Jonsbo makes, as they really stick it to companies making plastic rubbish for the same prices.

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    Now as ITX cases go she is kinda large. However, what she does allow is two 120s in the bottom and two 120s in the top. Which means wind tunnel. I also didn't pop for the cheaper window glass version I opted for the more muted yet vented alu panels.

    All I need to do now is buy an AIO today. 120 or 240, I think either would be fine with the 3600.
     
  2. Cenedd

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 4 Jun 2007

    Posts: 2,240

    Location: Watford, UK

    I can recommend the Arctic Cooling 240. The VRM fan isn't loud like you might fear and it's happily keeping that 16-core 2GHz ES-Xeon cool. It's not overclocked (to be fair) but it's managing 34°C at mostly idle (just some services but no gaming) at 1000rpm (max is 1800rpm). That may not sound that impressive but it's shut in a small cupboard that's currently 27°C and has been much hotter when the sun's out! Provided you have a decent PWM header with temp-based control, you're golden.

    Edit: Oh, and we currently have building work going on so the cupboard's intake fan has merrily coated everything in thick layers of concrete dust *facepalm*....and it's quite happy.
     
  3. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    TBH dude I was cheap :D

    I think 240 for a 3600 is overkill. TBH? a 120 would have probably done the trick. However, I found this for £52 so I got it.

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    TBH in any case the fans would have gone in the bin any way.

    That should be all of it now lol.
     
  4. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Stuff started arriving yesterday.

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    Installed Win 10 on there and did some tests. All good. Case came this morning.

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    Set to work.

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    The rad tray.

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    OK few changes. Having seen it when the board and PSU went in I decided not to use the Bitspower fans. Mostly because I knew that hiding those two huge hubs (RGB and PWM) would be a serious pain in the ass. So, I fitted two of these to the top.

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    The same as "Big Me" has. In the bottom I used the two Cooler Master fans.

    I fitted the pads to the GPU last night.

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    But the memory pads were too thick. The card idled lovely, but as soon as you put load on it the fans went to 100% so I shut it down and took it apart again. Did get a quick vid before that though.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3MHyeJ3OKo
     
  5. Cenedd

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 4 Jun 2007

    Posts: 2,240

    Location: Watford, UK

    And the saga of the PCI-E extension begins.....again!
    Hopefully not this time *fingers crossed*
     
  6. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    It looks really solid. Update from today's peeing around.

    I found out all about the joys of sex earlier. Sorry, wrong book.. I meant the joys of ITX.

    The board only has two headers. This is OK for four fans. What about the pump? the pump is not PWM, so needs its own header. That means I need to connect four fans to the other header, which can't be done safely. Splitters only split up to 3 fans before you need power.

    I thought I had a hub in the Phanteks. Well, I do, but it's not PWM and I am f****d if I am trying to fit a fan controller etc etc in there. It's too small. So I got a powered PWM splitter that receives a signal from the board and the PWM. The power is all taken care of by the SATA power connector on it.

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    Then I started getting annoyed. I really didn't want to have to find a home for something like that. I figured it out in the end. Extend all four fans into the front top corner, then send a SATA power cable up there* and fit the lot in that area at the front/top and basically 3M tape it to the inside of the front panel.

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    In this gap.

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    Which ought to work perfectly.

    *. Oh yes, the joys of ITX. This was the first time I uttered a swear word. Of course that fan hub needs power. That means fitting an entire daisy chain of SATA power connectors into the modular PSU. Problem is there is no room to hide them down the side of the PSU.

    So, I grabbed that silver Alchemy Molex to SATA, plugged in the only molex run, cut off all of them apart from the first one, connected that to the PSU and then ran the silver extension up to where the fan hub will live.

    Which was a massive pain in the willy . Especially trying to get all four extended fans up in the same space without removing the PSU which would be almost impossible now.

    Oh and ignore all of those cables hanging out (SATA, 24 pin etc etc) there is no point in tidying it until the drives have gone in. Which can't happen until after tomorrow night, as it's our game night and if I remove them I won't have any games to play [​IMG]
     
  7. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Had lots of headaches with this. Thought it was a duff vertical ribbon, but turns out my test GPU (a GT 640) just didn't like it. Then I had tons of stability issues, so I cleared CMOS, set the XMP again and it's been wonderful since.

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    That is the "untidy" side. Not much I could do about it. I want to try and get a filter on the PSU before I button it all up as well.

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    This is the pretty side.

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    Should be all finished soon. Was a bit of a pain in the balls I had to fit two 2.5" SATA drives, but there wasn't much of a choice given the board has one NVME. I need storage. Performance wise? wow. I am absolutely thrilled. The 3600 boosts to 4.2ghz and the GPU is super quick. I also treated myself to a whole new bunch of peripherals, given I have used the same old tat here at my mother's for about 6 years. I have the Huntsman Elite at home, and it's easily the best keyboard I have ever had. It really restored my faith in Razer. I don't have as much room here, so I got this on sale for £78.

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    It's the Huntsman TE. Same switches, just smaller. I got a Viper Mini too. Was on sale.

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    And a Goliathus XXL RGB for £27.

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    Was stoked with that. BTW it seems I missed a post out here. The pads came from OCUK.

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    And they are excellent. GPU temps immediately dropped 12c idle, and it no longer goes nuts when you put it under load.

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    Like I said, I did suspect the riser was dead. It seems perfect, but I had already decided to order this as a backup any way.

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    No PCIE4 here, so I don't have to sell my spleen. Room is undergoing major refurb atm. Once it's all done I will get some final pics.
     
  8. sgoaty

    Mobster

    Joined: 30 Jan 2005

    Posts: 2,584

    Location: Inverness

    Nice build log there!
     
  9. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Thanks dude.

    I spoke with customer service. The guy made a very valid point. Maybe that ribbon does not like "unpowered" GPUs. IE, ones that pull all of their power through the ribbon. That could well explain it.
     
  10. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    All done. Had a few teething issues.

    I will admit this is the first rig I have had on air in about 7 years or more. So I was quite spoiled with the 7v "set it and forget it" nature of water cooling. As such I made a few rookie errors. Firstly I went in and enabled "max performance mode" in Win 10. Bad idea. All fans immediately ramped to full speed, CPU was guzzling voltage and temps were pretty insane. I also had a GPU issue too. Firstly the PC temps. I think this was because it was running the AIO pump all out, and thus it was hurting the performance. I would imagine in such a tiny loop it's best to slow it down and let the rad work better. The fix for that was going into the BIOS and setting it all to normal mode. The fans now do as they should. Silent at idle, ramp up when under load. I knew this rig would be noisy, I didn't care. Every time it makes noise I am wearing a headset, so I don't hear it.

    Second issue was the GPU. The VRAM was reaching 98c. At which point I was treated to multi coloured orbs (not space invaders, I'd have soiled myself if I saw those !) and was crashing. Now I had already set a fan curve in the Gigabyte app. However, it appears it's crap and the fans were not spinning up past 20%. I then tried Precision X, but everything was greyed out. Seen this before too, usually involves a reinstall of Windows. However, as a last gasp I tried AB and it worked. Set the fan curve quite aggressively, lowered the temp and power limits and now the card boosts correctly. It was boosting to over 2100mhz before which on air isn't possible. So now it boosts 1700-1900 odd and doesn't go over 76c. More importantly the VRAM caps out at 85c, all issues gone. Like I said, it has been many years since I had to mess with any of this stuff !..

    The room it's in is undergoing a makeover. Chair and curtains are going, space is now important instead of being surrounded with crap. This is how it currently looks.

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    Very happy with it would be an understatement. New chair, curtains etc coming soon. I threw my wrist pad for the KB in the wash, but now all of the yellow peripherals have been replaced? yeah, not sure I want to use it. So, I ordered this on OCUK.

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    Should cap it off nicely.
     
  11. D1craig

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 28 Aug 2014

    Posts: 2,025

    looks awesome, so much better in the smaller case than that massive thing. custom loop next?

    are you sure about that phanteks hub? ive used 3 or 4 different hubs and the phanteks one was the cheapest but also the best and easiest to use. i just plugged in the power wire it has and all the fans. the other ones seemed to just run at full speed for some reason.
     
  12. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Hey man. The Phanteks hub came with the case. It was just a basic 3 pin affair. I was hoping to get off free, but the 4 pin one I got was only £7 delivered. It works really well too, almost too well.....

    So yeah, I tried to get off cheap. I hoped (in vain) that the Cooler Master fans that came stock with the AIO would do a good job of getting air into the case. Being that they are 2500 RPM and almost free to spin I hoped they would do the job without things going bad. When I finally dialled in the fans etc I could literally hear turbulence. Like, whooshes of air every few seconds. This could have been for a few reasons. Mostly I would guess it was because the fans I used on the rad are 1200 RPM SP fans. And very good too. However, for them to hit 1200 RPM the CMs hit 2500. And at that point? they were just making loads of noise and the temps were actually worse.

    I piddled around a bit with settings, and noticed they were better when running slower. However, because of GPU and CPU temps in the case they were spinning up and becoming obnoxious. So I decided to do a bit of digging, and I found out they are actually pretty terrible. 26 CFM at 2500 RPM. Crap, then. That said it wasn't unexpected. I mean, the whole cooler cost me £46.

    So, I decided to slightly bite the bullet and get the best budget fans I could find.

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    Noctua industrial, the up to date variant. 1700 RPM with 73 CFM. They were like, £12 each. Something like that any way. I also decided to splash on the rubber corner things and they were another £8 or so. Well worth it though.

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    The only other thing I have had to do is limit the GPU temp to 76C. Not for the core, but because the VRAM tends to run about 7c warmer, and once it hits 86c I start getting coloured orbs. Not space invaders, coloured orbs. If I keep going the memory will eventually hit 96c and crash. And the funny part is? it's all mostly for nothing. For some reason the card tends to want to boost itself to destruction. If I set the temp limit to 86c (which is bone stock) it's trying to push to 2100mhz. Which is just not happening on air at all. And it will try and stay there too, whilst it cooks its own VRAM. It doesn't seem to care about the memory temps at all.

    With it wound down to 76c and undervolted? it's still hitting 1900mhz. Most of the time it hovers mid 1700s, but that is more than enough chops to run PUBG on ultra settings at 1440p. It just kinda annoys me that everything is telling the GPU to do that. The drivers, its bios, hell even bloody Windows man. Like, I set the power options to performance and it just starts boosting its **** off again.

    Gigabyte, Nvidia etc. Who do I blame? all of them. They need to stop trying to make these cards something they are not, and accept their real performance. Not boost balls just to get better reviews. I am pretty sure if I hit the stock button with Afterburner and left it to its own devices it would surely die.

    Surely GPU makers and driver authors could make a card aware of its surroundings? like, temps etc. Realise that some cases don't have brilliant air flow etc and make the card do what it has to do to last and survive? nah, all about making it look good for reviews and F you when it cooks itself and dies out of warranty. I am just glad I knew how to stop it killing itself.

    Any way, so yeah, those two fans really made it almost perfect. I still need the GPU fans to be very aggressive, but I couldn't care about that I just don't want it dying. I wear headphones every time I game any way, so it really doesn't matter.
     
  13. D1craig

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 28 Aug 2014

    Posts: 2,025

    i cant remember who it was i watched but they said on a similar tiny case that the perforated side panels actually hindered performance as too much of the air was escaping before it cooled all the components.

    yea the phanteks hub i bought was like less than a 10er. ive used it for years now.

    that looks awesome, i just love seeing such awesomeness packed into such a tiny case.
     
  14. Alan McFall

    Hitman

    Joined: 11 Jun 2021

    Posts: 671

    Location: Earth

    Nicely done, looks great, must have been extremely frustrating at times !
     
  15. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    The temps are great now I have set it up properly with decent intake fans. Obviously this big hot spell hasn't helped. I've still been gaming four hours a night though, I must be a massochist. It's been reaching 76c (my limit) and clocks have been just under 1600mhz. However last night it was hitting 69c and boosting to mid 1700s. So the case is performing well now.

    Alan - cheers dude. Yeah, mucho PITA. It is OK just building it once, but having to take it apart twice after the fact and swap things that went in at the beginning was a pain.
     
  16. Pocket10s

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Oct 2014

    Posts: 464

    Havent seen this case before, looks really good!

    Sorry, I've skim read but try putting the bottom fans as exhaust, so that you are encouraging air through the side panels into the case and out the top/ bottom.

    This is better than a down/ up airflow path as right now your fighting against the normal pattern of the GPU, which is to intake in through the sides of the case and out laterally of each side of the GPU.
     
  17. ALXAndy

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2010

    Posts: 10,875

    Location: West Sussex

    Hey man. Bottom are on intake, top on exhaust. Heat rises, so cool air in the bottom pushing up is always better.
     
  18. dave28

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 28 Jun 2013

    Posts: 1,609

    cool little built that, well done
     
  19. Jordan Harley

    Associate

    Joined: 19 Jan 2021

    Posts: 12

    Looks great, Very sleek.
     
  20. MeGaMaN

    Gangster

    Joined: 15 Nov 2018

    Posts: 188

    Location: Leicestershire

    Cute little guy! Around 7 years ago I bought a shuttle PC with a GTX770 (which is very power hungry and runs HOT) and found there was a massive difference in CPU & GPU temperature when removing the sides of the case. Kind of defeats the object as obviously looks terrible with only half a case but with the sides on was a handsome little machine!