Prototype Flux A01 - 16l ITX silent airflow case - 2 chamber design

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
Hello SSF Community!
My Name is Marco, i am from Austria and a mechanical engineer. I am into Pc building since 2006 with my first watercooling, after some years i switched to air cooling.
Now my problem is that my PC is on the desk and i want to have a pc that is nearly complete silent and small that i can ad a third monitor :D

Some time ago i found the SSF community and from that point on i knew i have to go for a small form factor ITX case.
But there is no ITX on the market for my needs.
I want to put in be biggest Air Cooler for CPU and the possibility to switch the GPU cooler to an aftermarket one.

So i started to design my own case, in the last weeks i had so many ideas and in the end i came up with this idea.
I wanted to have the smallest case for the best airflow. So there are 2 seperate chambers, one for Mainboard/CPU and PSU
and one for the GPU. ( i will explain in detail why, but i need some drawings to prepare for it :D)

In the bottom chamber it is possible to mount every GPU (max. 300mm) 2 slots + 2x120mm fans // or 3-4 slot GPU without the 120mm fans.
In the upper chamber is enough space for SFX PSU (also SFX-L should fit) and a Noctua NH D15

Specs:
310x265x200mm

1x120mm fan back
1x120mm fan top
2x120mm fan bottom





the airflow idea:



2 do list:
- concept
- drawings
- more renderings
- order parts for 1st prototype
- build up 1st prototype

more details and drawings will come in the next days.

Please give me some feedback and your thoughts about the case.
(sorry for my bad english 🙈)
greetings Marco aka. The_Psyko
 
Last edited:

JSItems

Caliper Novice
Apr 28, 2019
22
14
This is almost exactly what I'd want. <20L, able to fit a D15S (or at least the U12A) and a Morpheus-modded GPU.

I have to say I would like a mesh or vented metal sidepanel option if possible, something like the
or the current Sidearm T1 design. I don't want a case with any kind of see-through panel (acrylic or TG) personally.

I can't wait to see how this progresses.
 
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Shatrod

Cable-Tie Ninja
Dec 6, 2019
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175
Does the gpu mount directly to the motherboard or do you have it on a short riser to accomodate the dual chamber split? What is the advantage of having the dual chamber design?

I like the renders, it looks cool, but I don't understand the need for the complexity with the short riser and dual chambers.
 

ermac318

Master of Cramming
Mar 10, 2019
541
439
Since GPU coolers tend to exhaust air both out the top and the bottom of the card, I think it'd be clever to have the GPU on a riser that pushes it lower in the case, and then have exhaust vents on both the front and back for GPU airflow. But risers of course add cost and complexity.
 

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
The idea behind is that silent means: keep the components cool. the 2 chamber designs is with a short riser cable and first i want to test it how the temps will be.
If there is no advantage, i will redesign the case and make it smaller. The problem of ITX cases like the Ncase M1 is that the GPU fans blow from bottom to top, but there is no possibility that the hot air can go out asap, so you have to transport it through the hole case.

In the 2nd picture you see the honeycomb vent cutouts, they are also on the other side so the fans can pull cool air in and exhaust on the left and right side. That there is no colliding with the hot exhaust air and the cool air in the upper (CPU) chamber here the intake is at the back side and exhaust on the top side.

I will make a sketch for better understanding :)
PS: can anyone tell me how i can edit my first post? (sry i am new in the forum 🙈 )
 

danny.nguyen

Average Stuffer
Sep 19, 2018
85
46
i was planning to design like your case because i wanted to put a massive cpu cooler in it.

will design it in the future.
 

Shatrod

Cable-Tie Ninja
Dec 6, 2019
149
175
Why not slot the gpu into the motherboard directly and have a removable cover above it (with a motherboard shaped cutout) to facilitate the dual chamber design without a riser cable? Lipe a psu shroud... only a gpu shroud. The itx motherboard does not fully cover a dual slot gpu so you would still get exhaust air out of both sides but it could be cheaper to make and more reliable too.
 
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The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
good idea, actually the design before the actual one was like this, and i choose the other way.
The pros will be that i win ~20mm in height, cheaper (because no riser-cable)
The disadvantages are that looks not that nice because the "cover" or "big gpu backplate" has to be mounted more or less direkt to the backplate of the gpu, the cutout for the MB has to be very big (could be collide with the M.2 or some Fan Headers, Sata ports?) and the handling will also not be that good.
I am thinking about all the different GPU out there, with different backplates and the case should be go in production so everyone can use it and thats not easy to handle.
Thermals are also one point on the backside of the GPU, my 5700xt i have right now is very hot on the back side... and i am using the accelero xtreme 3


i am getting 72.5°C under the backplate
on the acutal 2 chamber design, there is a 5mm distance from the backplate to the plate
 

Shatrod

Cable-Tie Ninja
Dec 6, 2019
149
175
i am getting 72.5°C under the backplate
on the acutal 2 chamber design, there is a 5mm distance from the backplate to the plate
But isn't that clearance meaningless without airflow? You would just be trapping the heat from the backplate instead of letting it circulate out via cpu fan?
 

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
yeah you are right, i hope the fans in the bottom are enough that there is a circulation effekt in the whole chamber. i will do a test on that with some thermocouples.

Here are the idea of the airflow, made some rough sketches.

 

ermac318

Master of Cramming
Mar 10, 2019
541
439
Regardless of using a riser or not, you would want as little space as possible behind the GPU backplate to keep the volume as small as possible to prevent a big hot air pocket from forming. In fact, if you made the "divider" something like aluminum that connected to the case, you could include thermal pads which would attach from the backplate or the back of the card to the case and use the case itself as a heatsink.

EDIT: Also I would turn the PSU around so that the fan is facing the CPU, since your desired airflow is back-to-front. Using the airflow from inside the case and pushing air out through the PSU would add additional negative pressure. Understand that would push hot air into the PSU, but it keeps one more airflow vector out of it.
 
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The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
that is a very good idea to use the middle plate as a extended heatsink. i should consider/try it.
For the first prototype i want to use aluminum profiles and all other parts out of 5mm acrylic.

I can mount the PSU in both direction, i choose the fan in the front because i am working on a shroud/housing for the PSU and make a little cutout in the front, so the PSU is also seperated from the CPU. I can make a sketch if you want.
I don't know if negativ pressure is that good, i have to test it myself, in my opinion a positiv or consistent airflow would be better.
 
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SirJack

Average Stuffer
Feb 22, 2018
87
54
Bottom intake is usually constricted. Consider flipping the case? Looking good tho!
 

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
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Thanks :)
yes should be easily possible to flip it.
The only thing would be that the cpu exhaust would be on the bottom side, and from physical point of view the hot air wants to go upwards (but with a possitiv pressure inside the case it shouldn't matter)

My goal is to make the case as silent as possible (number of fans should be at a minimum and the RPM should be also on the minimum side)

I will test some different setups :)
 

ermac318

Master of Cramming
Mar 10, 2019
541
439
Thanks :)
yes should be easily possible to flip it.
The only thing would be that the cpu exhaust would be on the bottom side, and from physical point of view the hot air wants to go upwards (but with a possitiv pressure inside the case it shouldn't matter)

My goal is to make the case as silent as possible (number of fans should be at a minimum and the RPM should be also on the minimum side)

I will test some different setups :)
Convection (hot air rising) is completely negated by any fan pressure. It's not even worth adding into your calculations unless you are building an entirely fanless case.

Easiest way to make everyone happy is to make the case reversible. Add screw holes for feet on the top and bottom panels, and let the user decide which orientation they want to deploy the case (like the Sidearmd T1 does). You already have a featureless front panel, the only thing is making sure you can set the case on the desk in either orientation.
 

SirJack

Average Stuffer
Feb 22, 2018
87
54
Thanks :)
yes should be easily possible to flip it.
The only thing would be that the cpu exhaust would be on the bottom side, and from physical point of view the hot air wants to go upwards (but with a possitiv pressure inside the case it shouldn't matter)

My goal is to make the case as silent as possible (number of fans should be at a minimum and the RPM should be also on the minimum side)

I will test some different setups :)
I suspect you can go for a backpanel CPU exaust, seems like plenty of room for the PSU and fan. PSU airflow (intake) is another story, the best way to go is a porferated front.
 

The_Psyko

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Feb 10, 2020
23
43
@ermac318 yes i will add "screw holes" for the feets. So that there is a possibility to turn the case. The feet design is another story, i have to think about these now, for the prototype i will use some round feets from lianli i have here.

@SirJack it should also be possible. For now there is enough from around the PSU, but i will see at the prototype, i want enough room for the cables and also thinking about SSD maybe, 2 SSD can now be mounted behind the motherboard, maybe i extend it to maybe 4 SSD slots. If i do an extra intake for the PSU, it will only be a small cutout in the front (~150x5mm). I like a very clean front without holes, maybe a small logo and a small I/O panel.
 

Spartoi

Chassis Packer
Jun 4, 2018
17
7
D15 + Accelero 3 cooler in a SFF case is exactly the same thing I want. I've had to settle for the Ncase M1 but would definitely upgrade to this when available. I hope build of materials increases however as an acrylic case/panels is unappealing. I also wonder if with the GPU cover/chamber, does that mean DTX motherboards will not be supported?
 
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