Prototype $50 10L Laser Cut Case

Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Hi everyone!

I hope you are staying safe and healthy during these tough times.

I want to share a case that I hope to start selling soon. The design in question is a 10L, inverted-tower style composed of flat acrylic panels. I made and sold a few cases with a nearly identical layout last year and got some great feedback. This prompted me to do another small production run. Unfortunately, supply chain delays hit hard and I only recently received all of the cut acrylic.

I am still waiting on some small 3d printed parts and opaque front panels, but have everything else ready to go. I designed the case to be as easy as possible to assemble and ship. My target price is $50, plus $15 for shipping (currently using USPS Medium Flat Rate, but would love cheaper alternatives).

I'll share more photos and specifications soon. But, here's the quick rundown:

  • 196x173x295mm (LxWxH)
  • GPU: 180mm long, 130mm wide, 52mm thick
  • 145mm max CPU Cooler
  • 2x80mm/1x92mm exhaust (I actually fit a BeQuiet! 120mm in my test build)
  • 1x120mm/1x140mm intake
  • Watercooling: Most 120mm AIO's, some 140mm (depends on end tank size)
  • Storage: Slots for up to 10 2.5" SSD's







Here's the instruction manual:


Thanks!
 

Gerold

Cable-Tie Ninja
Mar 19, 2020
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171
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Looks great, love the concept!
Very straight forward manual as well, I really like it :)
Do you have more content of the finished builds?
Parts used, pictures, experiences?

Will you be shipping internationally?
 

ignsvn

By Toutatis!
Moderator
Apr 4, 2016
1,538
1,402
Nice design, and, on top of that, well written manual.

I'm interested to know story behind the 173mm width? If I recall correctly, around 145mm is enough to be compatible with many ITX GPUs. Is it to specifically accommodate tall CPU coolers?
 

Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Nice design, and, on top of that, well written manual.

I'm interested to know story behind the 173mm width? If I recall correctly, around 145mm is enough to be compatible with many ITX GPUs. Is it to specifically accommodate tall CPU coolers?

Thanks! I could have made the case a little more narrow, but wanted to maximize component compatibility.

The GPU is 130mm wide, cable clearance is ~22mm wide (I wanted to avoid bulging panels from PCIe cables), and when you also factor in motherboard, standoff, and panel thicknesses, the total dimensions come out to around 170mm. I've attached a dimensioned view of all the clearances.

You can definitely get more narrow if you use a sandwich style like the Dancase/Steck/Ghost/Sidearms of the world, but buying PCIe risers would cost a significant amount of the case itself!


 

Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
I love the frosted look!

Thanks Windfall! Appreciate it. The frosted panel was sort of a mistake (I had intended to order white), but I like how it turned out. Each case will come with both frosted and white panels!



Looks great, love the concept!
Very straight forward manual as well, I really like it :)
Do you have more content of the finished builds?
Parts used, pictures, experiences?

Will you be shipping internationally?

Thank you! I'll post more photos soon of my example build. Until then, here's an album of my older case design with a very similar (almost identical layout).


I don't have hardware that can really test the thermals of the case (Ryzen 1600 AF + GTX 1050), but have seen really low temperatures in my testing. 50-60C max for the CPU and GPU (with a 120mm intake, NH-L12, and 2x80mm exhaust). Some buyers of the older case ran RTX 2060 cards without any issues. I'll try to figure out ways to improve my thermal testing setup (maybe following the lead of Gamer's Nexus).

I can also definitely ship internationally! I'll have to look into shipping pricing.
 
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ignsvn

By Toutatis!
Moderator
Apr 4, 2016
1,538
1,402
Thanks! I could have made the case a little more narrow, but wanted to maximize component compatibility.

The GPU is 130mm wide, cable clearance is ~22mm wide (I wanted to avoid bulging panels from PCIe cables), and when you also factor in motherboard, standoff, and panel thicknesses, the total dimensions come out to around 170mm. I've attached a dimensioned view of all the clearances.

You can definitely get more narrow if you use a sandwich style like the Dancase/Steck/Ghost/Sidearms of the world, but buying PCIe risers would cost a significant amount of the case itself!

Understood.

Acrylic is not my material of choice, but it won't stop me from giving advice:

May want to consider adding exhaust holes on:
- Front panel, for GPU.
- Motherboard panel, for M.2 drives.
 
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Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Understood.

Acrylic is not my material of choice, but it won't stop me from giving advice:

May want to consider adding exhaust holes on:
- Front panel, for GPU.
- Motherboard panel, for M.2 drives.

Yeah, I'd love to experiment with metal at some point but the equipment needed for it is out of my reach for now.

I appreciate the advice regarding the exhausts. I don't have an M.2 to test with, but acrylic isn't a great thermal conductor and any M.2 drives on the bottom of the motherboard might get toasty. While the case will ship with closed front panels, I'll make the files for the whole case available. Some different vented front panel designs will be included there.

You can probably get the front panel made in the material of your choice through some service like Ponoko for $5-15.

Love it! Excellent work, including the instruction manual.

Thank you! I am a huge fan of your work and I appreciate the kind words.
 
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kazuma86

Airflow Optimizer
Jan 12, 2020
276
164
Your manual instruction is awesome, but this case little bit big, can you share picture with max GPU card length for this case?
 

Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Your manual instruction is awesome, but this case little bit big, can you share picture with max GPU card length for this case?



Here's the case with a 180mm card. You have a few extra mm of clearance, but I wanted to account for GPU's that might be a little longer than advertised.

I could have made the case a liter or two smaller, but I felt that the slightly bigger size was worth the tradeoff for component compatibility. Perhaps this isn't the most faithful to the SFF mantra, but I think the 10L size is still reasonable.
 

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Feb 10, 2020
29
46
nice case, very simple and clean, i am working more or less on a bigger brother of yours :D
what acrylic is that what are you using? is it mat finish?
i only got the glossy one from the suppliers for a adequate price.
 

ignsvn

By Toutatis!
Moderator
Apr 4, 2016
1,538
1,402
On a 2nd thought, looking at Jonsbo U1, which has same layout and 170mm width, I think 173mm is OK :)

Today there's a reasonably healthy options of ITX GPU up to 2070 (MSI RTX 2070 Aero ITX or Gigabyte RTX 2070 ITX, for example). Side effect is higher noise with only single fan maintaining certain temperature, but hey, it's SFF world and we need to compromise to a certain extent.
 

TheHig

King of Cable Management
Bronze Supporter
Oct 13, 2016
951
1,171
Like the clean look as well as the straightforward layout. Looks easy to build in and a nice case to house a decent mid range system in and keep cool. Willing to bet you could get away with a 2060 in there thermally speaking.

My Daughter's PC is a 1600 with a 1050ti and could easily drop right into this. Interested in picking one up when you have some available!

Nice work!
 
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Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Like the clean look as well as the straightforward layout. Looks easy to build in and a nice case to house a decent mid range system in and keep cool. Willing to bet you could get away with a 2060 in there thermally speaking.

My Daughter's PC is a 1600 with a 1050ti and could easily drop right into this. Interested in picking one up when you have some available!

Nice work!

Thank you! I think a 2060 is probably the reasonable limit for a GPU - you could theoretically fit a 2070 with a slim 15mm intake fan on top but I'd still be worried about thermals.

I'll let you know once they become available! I'm aiming to have some ready by mid-next week.

On a 2nd thought, looking at Jonsbo U1, which has same layout and 170mm width, I think 173mm is OK :)

Today there's a reasonably healthy options of ITX GPU up to 2070 (MSI RTX 2070 Aero ITX or Gigabyte RTX 2070 ITX, for example). Side effect is higher noise with only single fan maintaining certain temperature, but hey, it's SFF world and we need to compromise to a certain extent.

Very true. I hope to get my hands on an itx 2070 or 2060. I think a pressure optimized 120mm fan with a carefully designed GPU shroud could result in great thermals or at least low noise.

nice case, very simple and clean, i am working more or less on a bigger brother of yours :D
what acrylic is that what are you using? is it mat finish?
i only got the glossy one from the suppliers for a adequate price.

Thanks! I am using a combination of 3mm and 5mm matte acrylic. Are you in the US? If so, Delvie's Plastics sells P95 matte black acrylic (matte on one side, glossy on the other) for great prices.
 

ignsvn

By Toutatis!
Moderator
Apr 4, 2016
1,538
1,402
Very true. I hope to get my hands on an itx 2070 or 2060. I think a pressure optimized 120mm fan with a carefully designed GPU shroud could result in great thermals or at least low noise.

Ah true that, if you don't mind removing / modifying the GPU shroud, you can always try a 100mm or 120mm fan.

Some GPUs have fan attached to the shroud, so you can only remove both. You may want to consider adding screw holes to the top cover so people can screw the fan there (IIRC quite a few people doing this on NCASE. They remove original GPU fan and/or shroud and/or radiator and use 3rd party GPU cooler, like Accelero. Then they put 2 big fans at the bottom of the case).
 
Last edited:

Colinreay

Cable-Tie Ninja
Original poster
Aug 28, 2016
198
490
Ah true that, if you don't mind removing / modifying the GPU shroud, you can always try a 100mm or 120mm fan.

Some GPUs have fan attached to the shroud, so you can only remove both. You may want to consider adding screw holes to the top cover so people can screw the fan there (IIRC quite a few people doing this on NCASE. They remove original GPU fan and/or shroud and/or radiator and use 3rd party GPU cooler, like Accelero. Then they put 2 big fans at the bottom of the case).

Definitely agree with you here. I already have my top panels cut, but adding additional mounting provisions for top mounted fans is a smart move going forward.



I've found 3D printing GPU shrouds is actually pretty viable. Here's one I made for my GTX 1050 which I've used for the past year or two. You could definitely get creative and make a shroud that optimizes the power of static pressure fans.

This is an awesome little project. I'd love to put another build together in one of these.

Thanks! They'll be available next week, stay tuned!
 
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lexkalin

Efficiency Noob
Apr 1, 2020
5
2
I was looking to order this one and make a small cheap-ish sff pc for the living room from components I already have and this thing hits the homerun. Can you estimate when you'll be able to ship to Europe? Matte acryl looks quite good actually!