Completed Lone Industries L5 - 4.6L Mini ITX

robbee

Master of Cramming
Silver Supporter
Sep 24, 2016
417
501
I'm experimenting with both in my Realan E-i7 case right now but I'm struggling to get the low profile 1050ti GPU's 3-pin fan output to properly control a pair of these fans. I know some of the other 1050ti low profiles only have a 2 pin fan header.
This can indeed be a pain. I have the MSI one with 2 pins and ended up plugging the fans in a PWM header on my motherboard and have speedfan control them based on the gpu temperature. This works just as well.

On topic: I think I like the vented front the most. Being the conservative option, it might be interesting commercially as well. But seeing how fast the previous Lone cases went, I'm not sure that's much of an argument :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Biowarejak

Vittra

Airflow Optimizer
May 11, 2015
358
85
Luckily, it's very inexpensive for someone to buy hex screws for the case if they would like. I could never find hex screws with a nice dark black finish. They often had an oily residue. Despite being M3 in size, the M3 hex head diameter was noticeably larger than the M3 phillips flat head diameter. I prefer the phillips head screws I use now, and have never stripped one. They are stainless steel, which may help. The finish is a nice deep black, no oil residue, and they have a smaller diameter head, which fits the cases countersink holes better.
Robertson!

Robertson!!

ROBERTSON!!!

:cool:
 

rcradiator

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Feb 23, 2018
108
73
Which coolers would be recommended for this case? It seems traditional top down coolers won't work as well here due to being starved for air from the solid side panel. Tower coolers work best for front to back airflow, but the only one that has a chance of fitting here is the Dynatron A24, although 60mm fans will be a nightmare noise wise.
 

Legion

Airflow Optimizer
Nov 22, 2017
247
297
Which coolers would be recommended for this case? It seems traditional top down coolers won't work as well here due to being starved for air from the solid side panel. Tower coolers work best for front to back airflow, but the only one that has a chance of fitting here is the Dynatron A24, although 60mm fans will be a nightmare noise wise.
Due to the orientation of the A24 on socket AM4 it would blow straight into the top panel and suck air from an already hot gfx card (if you had one installed). I'm sure James has something in mind that he'll comment on shortly.

This is ofc an AMD specific problem, using Intel CPU's on 115x, you can orient coolers in multiple positions on most motherboards.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Biowarejak

Lone

King of Cable Management
Original poster
Lone Industries
Feb 25, 2015
702
1,169
loneindustries.com
I've done initial testing with a Noctua NH-L9i (with stock fan, and NF-B9 PWM). I'm fairly confident the NH-L12S will also work well, but I don't have one to test at the moment. The fan on a NH-L12S should sit about the same height as a NH-L9i with a NF-B9 (need to confirm). I plan on doing more testing once I receive some parts in December, at which time I will post more information.
 
  • Like
Reactions: xcrco

Michael

Average Stuffer
Jan 3, 2016
57
22
I'm guessing not everyone is going to want the vertical orientation, especially if this is used as a HTPC, are the feet just the rubber stick on or are they affixed with screws? If they are screw based is their a mounting solution if you want to lay it horizontal? Thanks!
 

Lone

King of Cable Management
Original poster
Lone Industries
Feb 25, 2015
702
1,169
loneindustries.com
I'm planning to continue using simple stick on feet. The renderings show the same feet used on the L4, but there's a possibility that might change.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Highsea

QuantumBraced

Master of Cramming
Mar 9, 2017
501
356
Given that the CPU and GPU draw air directly from the outside, I'm not sure the front fans would do much. Maybe if you use a lower profile CPU cooler, then some of the front intake will feed it, but with a CPU fan a few mm from the side panel, it will draw almost all of its air from the outside. And the GPU is right up against the bottom too, so the front air intake doesn't seem like it would do much. Unless you have a window front panel option, then I dig it.

Speaking of CPU coolers, I think L12S support is crucial, it would be by far the most popular cooler in the case, and distinguish it from other ultra SFF options that only allow Li9/C7/etc. so it definitely has to be supported IMO.
 

Lone

King of Cable Management
Original poster
Lone Industries
Feb 25, 2015
702
1,169
loneindustries.com
The CPU and GPU do not draw air directly from the outside on the L5 (at least at this point). Window may be a possibility down the road.
 

QuantumBraced

Master of Cramming
Mar 9, 2017
501
356
The CPU and GPU do not draw air directly from the outside on the L5 (at least at this point). Window may be a possibility down the road.
You mean the sides and bottom are sealed? Doesn't that severely hamper airflow? You have minimal clearance between the walls and the CPU/GPU fans. Midtower cases with window side panels and vertical GPU mounts where the GPU is a little too close to the window suffer from insufficient airflow and higher temperatures, this would be an extreme version of that. And you're only exhausting passively thru the rear in a very tight case with minimal clearance between components. I'd love to see some temperature tests, but I have a feeling it would be very hot. I think a window can work, but only if you have up to a 40mm cooler, and the GPU still intakes from the bottom.

I don't mean to be so negative, I'm just thinking out loud. I do love the project, I definitely want to get one.
 

Lone

King of Cable Management
Original poster
Lone Industries
Feb 25, 2015
702
1,169
loneindustries.com
Your concerns are valid.

Despite all the direct vents on the L4, it can become heat soaked with an NH-L9 under continuous 100% CPU load. Add a GPU, or internal PSU and the issue is made worse. Yes, using a NH-L12S or other 120 mm CPU cooler does help. In the L5, there is about 72 mm total CPU clearance. With a NH-L9i that leaves about 35 mm clearance.

Here are some of the test results using a concept L5 (hacked up L4):
  • L4, Ryzen 2200G, NH-L9a, no case fan: Max CPU: 85*C+, MB: 55*C (20 min prime95 test, heat soaked)
  • L5 (hacked up L4), Ryzen 2200G, NH-L9a, 1x 80x25 mm fan (positive): Max CPU: 79-82*C, MB: 49*C (20 min prime95 test, not heat soaked)
  • L5 (hacked up L4), Ryzen 2200G, NH-L9a, 1x 80x25 mm fan (negative): Max CPU: 89*C, MB: N/A (15 min prime95 test)
Note: Negative fan config (fans blowing out) failed pretty bad, which goes along with what you're saying. Had the positive fan config failed like the negative config, things would be different.

I'm waiting on the L5 prototypes to do more testing, and draw any conclusions. If necessary, I may add minimal venting above the CPU. I also have an i5-8500 that I want to test. The NH-L12S is also on my list.
 
Last edited:

Thehack

Shrink Way Wielder
Creator
Bronze Supporter
Mar 6, 2016
2,559
3,138
J-hackcompany.com
Your concerns are valid.

Despite all the direct vents on the L4, it can become heat soaked with an NH-L9 under continuous 100% CPU load. Add a GPU, or internal PSU and the issue is made worse. Yes, using a NH-L12S or other 120 mm CPU cooler does help. In the L5, there is about 72 mm total CPU clearance. With a NH-L9i that leaves about 35 mm clearance.

Here are some of the test results using a concept L5 (hacked up L4):
  • L4, Ryzen 2200G, NH-L9i (92x25mm), no case fan: Max CPU: 85*C+, MB: 55*C (20 min prime95 test, heat soaked)
  • L5 (hacked up L4), Ryzen 2200G, 1x 80x25 mm fan (positive): Max CPU: 79-82*C, MB: 49*C (20 min prime95 test, not heat soaked)
  • L5 (hacked up L4), Ryzen 2200G, 1x 80x25 mm fan (negative): Max CPU: 89*C, MB: N/A (15 min prime95 test)
Note: Negative fan config (fans blowing out) failed pretty bad, which goes along with what you're saying. Had the positive fan config failed like the negative config, things would be different.

I'm waiting on the L5 prototypes to do more testing, and draw any conclusions. If necessary, I may add minimal venting above the CPU. I also have an i5-8500 that I want to test. The NH-L12S is also on my list.
Using a low profile cpu cooler in the L4 is pretty much the worst case scenario.

I believe using front to rear airflow only facilitate a glass side panel. Otherwise it is a step backwards in space efficiency and cooling. 72mm clearance, with a well ventilated side panel, means you can use more potent 120mm fans for cpu cooling, such as Big Shuriken 2 with a 25mm thick fan.

But there is also the matter of aesthetics. Front fans means the case look more symmetrical, and aesthetics is a strong bullet for many people.
 

Lone

King of Cable Management
Original poster
Lone Industries
Feb 25, 2015
702
1,169
loneindustries.com
Thanks for your comments. The L5 definitely makes different trade-offs than the L4. The L5 is better in some ways, and in other ways takes a step back. Cooling performance aside, one nice thing about not having any side vents is you don't have to worry about blocking those vents, or having something drop into them.

I had a lot of issues with warped panels that killed the L4. I don't want to revisit that. Also, the L5 aesthetics are different, and that appeals to me at the moment. :)

Those who remember or still have an L2/L3 will also recall that I offered optional vented side panels.
 

Thehack

Shrink Way Wielder
Creator
Bronze Supporter
Mar 6, 2016
2,559
3,138
J-hackcompany.com
Thanks for your comments. The L5 definitely makes different trade-offs than the L4. The L5 is better in some ways, and in other ways takes a step back. Cooling performance aside, one nice thing about not having any side vents is you don't have to worry about blocking those vents, or having something drop into them.

I had a lot of issues with warped panels that killed the L4. I don't want to revisit that. Also, the L5 aesthetics are different, and that appeals to me at the moment. :)

Those who remember or still have an L2/L3 will also recall that I offered optional vented side panels.
Yeah. I think we're all see it as an evolution step, while you mean for it to be a big departure from your previous design.
 

QuantumBraced

Master of Cramming
Mar 9, 2017
501
356
I'm generally a fan of very streamlined airflow without pressure leaks, mainly for the sake of dust control. For the same reason, I don't like top vents. So I do dig the idea of all sides and top being sealed with just front-to-back airflow.

That being said, I think unless you're using a very low-power build and an L9i which allows for sufficient clearance between the side panel and the fan, you're just going to thermal throttle. If not the CPU, certainly the GPU. I mean a 1050 Ti with its fans right up against a wall and only passive exhaust will overheat very quickly I think. At the very least you need more GPU air clearance, but then you have to make the case taller...

HDPlex 160W is really a 200W continuous PSU if not more than that. You can have a 9700K with a 1050 Ti in this case. It's not so much an issue of being air-starved -- the fans will provide plenty of air. The issue is lack of airflow clearance. Testing the 2200G is a very limited use case, most people would run much more powerful systems in this case. It's an expensive/niche case, people buy these for powerful ultra SFF builds. If someone wanted a tiny 2200G build or equivalent, they'd get the upcoming ASRock DeskMini AM4 or a NUC or something.