Node 202 | LM V.1

LocoMoto

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Jul 19, 2015
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Hey there!

So i actually started a PC build, hadn't planned to do a build before Cerberus was out however it seemed like that could take some time.

The case I decided on was the Node 202 from Fractal Design with the bundled PSU because although quite large and the PSU rather loud it was good enough for the time being and I had always wondered if the space inside would allow for a liquid cooled setup. I'll get back to that later on.

As for the components, I got some basic parts that should be quite enough for me going from a basic laptop.
I got the CPU and MB bundled together, pretty much bringing down the CPU cost to i5 6400 levels.

Processor: Intel i5 6600k
Motherboard: Asus Z170i Pro Gaming
RAM: 1x 16GB Corsair ValueSelect
Graphics Card: Gainward GTX 970
Storage: Intel 540 480GB M.2 SSD
CPU Cooler: Schyte Big Shuriken 2
Case Fans: 2x Noctua NF-F12

I was not able to get any photos of building it due to poor lighting and space but here are some I actually could take!


As you probably see the cables are somewhat tidy but honestly I feel it's horrible compared to some motorcycle wiring I've done... Anyway, let's continue...

Using the PCI-E power cables to help keep the GPU not sagging.. Have some rubber spacers now though!
The rear also got camera attention.


Overall I'm quite happy with the current config, the CPU cooler with some CPU undervolts and 4,0Ghz clock is barely audible on gaming or movie/video loads.
The GPU and PSU are very load though, but managed some GPU overclocking with lower voltages.
The case fans help keep a steady airflow through the system in both vertical and horizontal positions.
The SSD does get a bit toasty under heavy load but haven't had it throttle yet, the capacity is good enough until I'll start playing more modern games.

Now onto some future plans!
I will most likely liquid cool this PC!
I have the dimensions confirmed for a DDC pump, 240x23mm rad w/ 2x 120x25mm fans, blocks and fitting for a single slot I/O GPU and the CPU.
A res is so far not on the list.. however.. depending on some external factors.. a CPU block/res combo might just happen but it's not very likely!

The Corsair SF600 PSU is also on the to get list.

I did get the 970 used, just because it would hold its value better when later selling it in favor of some newer more powerful single slot GPU.
Hopefully we'll soon see a single slot 1080 or something with similar performance from Radeon so I can start the liquid cooling.

I also plan on either a paint job or just getting some vinyl wrap to take the exterior to higher level.
Will also try and get concept art, updated photos and the likes on here as time goes on. Thanks for droppin' by!

I hope I've followed the forum rules, I also hope the images are working.. (First time creating a forum post/thread.. ever.. in my life)
 

LocoMoto

DEVOURER OF BAKED POTATOES
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Jul 19, 2015
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Welcome to SFF! And to forums! I'll love to see what you have in the future.
Thanks!
Yeah,what the future holds is quite exciting.

Gotta say I love looking at all the circuit boards and trying to visualize how everything works together.. and how easy it is not to get motor oil all over me working on computers!
 

Phuncz

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May 9, 2015
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Welcome ! A nice build to start off with ! Your GPU would perform a lot quieter if you'd be able to replace the entire cooler with a larger heatsink and just let the casefans do the work. I have no experience what might fit, you'd need to measure. But good starting points would be the Arctic Accelero Xtreme III or IV and the Raijintek Morpheus 2.

I'm using this kind of setup in an Ncase M1 and I'm floating on a cloud of "performance per dB" even with my toasty R9 290X.
 

Josh | NFC

Not From Concentrate
NFC Systems
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Jun 12, 2015
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Thanks!
Yeah,what the future holds is quite exciting.

Gotta say I love looking at all the circuit boards and trying to visualize how everything works together.. and how easy it is not to get motor oil all over me working on computers!

Well if you do start to miss it I could use your help on my Roadliner...my buddy's Indian is now faster and that is completely unacceptable. :p
 

LocoMoto

DEVOURER OF BAKED POTATOES
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Jul 19, 2015
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Welcome ! A nice build to start off with ! Your GPU would perform a lot quieter if you'd be able to replace the entire cooler with a larger heatsink and just let the casefans do the work. I have no experience what might fit, you'd need to measure. But good starting points would be the Arctic Accelero Xtreme III or IV and the Raijintek Morpheus 2.

I'm using this kind of setup in an Ncase M1 and I'm floating on a cloud of "performance per dB" even with my toasty R9 290X.
Thanks!
I did check out the Arctic one before.. it would be way to big and looks like the Raijintek would be so aswell, appreciate the suggestions though!
Something I actually did after I had started up and stress tested the PC for the first time was removing the Blower-style cooler and just using the case fans on the heatsinks... Worked fine under light load but quickly rushed up in temp when playing Fallout 3 and 4.. OpenRA seemed fine though...

I'll try and check out your build if you have it here on the forums!


Well if you do start to miss it I could use your help on my Roadliner...my buddy's Indian is now faster and that is completely unacceptable. :p
Lol, but I don't think that'd be a good idea.. I'd probably double cross ya for a shot at an Indian!;)
There's just something really fascinating about them when you're usually on mountains of Yamahas, Suzukis and Hondas.
 

Phuncz

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May 9, 2015
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I did check out the Arctic one before.. it would be way to big and looks like the Raijintek would be so aswell, appreciate the suggestions though!
Yeah those are pretty big. A smaller one is the Gelid Icy Vision, you could look into that one. There are more to be found though.

I'll try and check out your build if you have it here on the forums!
It's well hidden somewhere: https://smallformfactor.net/forum/threads/my-ever-changing-main-pc-ncase-m1.47/
 

LocoMoto

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So! Tried doing some CPU overclocking by adding more voltage instead of undervolting for 4,1ghz..
The result is a very stable 4,5ghz @2,75v and some Cache and Fclock improvements aswell.

Did manage 4,6 & 4,7 @2,75v in benchmarks/stress tests however... it didn't hold up for FO4 or Minecraft.. (My guess would be it mostly had to do with Cache and Fclock needing some more fine tuning as I could replicate it with 4,0ghz on the core)

Seeing as I haven't seen 80°c on any core with a low rpm setting for the fan.. I'm really happy temp-wise, would be neat if I could read system power draw though!

It's a nice bike but I like it considerably less when I know what he paid for it!
I can understand that! The power of perceived value..


Yeah those are pretty big. A smaller one is the Gelid Icy Vision, you could look into that one. There are more to be found though.


It's well hidden somewhere: https://smallformfactor.net/forum/threads/my-ever-changing-main-pc-ncase-m1.47/
Will be checking it out now!
 
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panton

Cable Smoosher
Apr 13, 2017
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hey!

Back from the ryzen topic, I was thinking a lot today and I've decided to source an intel build instead.
Main reason - ability to make it a hackintosh.
My goal is to base in on i7-6700K and hopefully with Node 202 as the case.
I wonder what are your thought on cooling that CPU in that case?
I'm considering cryorig c7 or maybe a cooler like yours, but in both cases, I'm not sure if it's enough for the given CPU.
No idea if I will ever overclock the system, but to have some spare tdp definitely won't hurt.

cheers
 

LocoMoto

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Jul 19, 2015
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Well, with my cooler I can keep the 6600k at 4,5ghz @2.75v on my lowest CPU header speed available 24/7, that gives me a noise level that is below audible less than a meter away with my hyperacusis, that is most likely something that should speak for the potential of it, even with the 6700k, at stock that CPU should fall bit below the heat of this i5.

I cannot speak for the C7 as... I simply only have this Schyte cooler for reference.. especially so in the Node 202.
I rarely use my Noctuas in this case, only when playing a more GPU demanding game do they spin up, they're simply... too loud otherwise!
The 970 transmits more electrical noise than the Schyte, with a power limit of 90%...
Heck, the wiring in a neighbouring room bothers me more.

However, you may hit 80°c or higher with this cooler if you enclose the 202 in a cabinet, overvolt your i7, live in an area with around 30°c or higher ambient room temperature etc. That is passable, however not something everyone likes seeing.

PS: This might not affect too much.. but I don't have the fan directly against the heatsink, I have a piece of electrical tape on two sides of the fan. However! If you shroud the heatsink side not towards the exhaust vent just right.. you're exhaust performance will improve, same goes for the other side too, more finicky there though.
PPS: Any cooler that would be chosen, should be oriented so it can as directly as possible blow the heat towards an exhaust vent.
PPPS: Dust filters work well in the 202.
PPPPS: Blower style coolers for the GPU is the go to option to avoid cooking the CPU and/or GPU.
PPPPPS: Underside mounted M.2 SSDs... don't get much airflow... so... might wanna avoid a few thermally challenged NVME drives there.
 
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LocoMoto

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Did a slight upgrade, to the 202, an MSI Gaming X 1080ti and of course with the slim 120mm AF12x15 Noctua fans this time, really fills out the case.

As far as I could tell the old 970 I was using had issues with power distribution (upgrade was now a few months ago but hey, content for the site! ;D)

The pre-supplied PSU is handling it I feel narrowly, and the case layout is at least allowing for a stable 1900mhz clock on the GPU with a 34% fan speed and 76c at the highest load temp I've noticed thus far
 

donflexus

What's an ITX?
Apr 26, 2018
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1
Did a slight upgrade, to the 202, an MSI Gaming X 1080ti and of course with the slim 120mm AF12x15 Noctua fans this time, really fills out the case.

As far as I could tell the old 970 I was using had issues with power distribution (upgrade was now a few months ago but hey, content for the site! ;D)

The pre-supplied PSU is handling it I feel narrowly, and the case layout is at least allowing for a stable 1900mhz clock on the GPU with a 34% fan speed and 76c at the highest load temp I've noticed thus far

Looks awesome! I'm planning for a similar build based on Coffee Lake.

Could you post additional pictures of details and clearances, please?

I'm especially interested in seeing the fit of the top lid around the CPU fan/cooler (is there a bulge, or does it fit snuggly? Dust filter in place or removed?). Is the CPU socket aligned with the air intake area in the lid?

Furthermore, is there any clearance between the GPU and the LP 120mm fans?

You could swap the PSU for a corsair 450W SFX. It's much higher efficiency and can actually handle 450w as opposed to the lower quality included PSU.
 
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LocoMoto

DEVOURER OF BAKED POTATOES
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Jul 19, 2015
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Could you post additional pictures of details and clearances, please?

I'm especially interested in seeing the fit of the top lid around the CPU fan/cooler (is there a bulge, or does it fit snuggly? Dust filter in place or removed?). Is the CPU socket aligned with the air intake area in the lid?

Furthermore, is there any clearance between the GPU and the LP 120mm fans?

Sorry for such a late reply but thank you, and on to some of the questions!
No more pictures until I start changing CPU/Mobo/RAM most likely, clearances are varied.

The top lid to CPU cooler has a clearance that is proper tight, if you don't pay attention to screwing down the lid it may very likely start bulging, however enough threading can be done without bulging.
Of course this is with the dust filter on, and the CPU socket is situated...
slightly to the top left of the last picture,
full intake area with the Big Shuriken 2 and Z170i PG, as well as fins open towards the exhaust vent.

There's probably around 12mm or so of clearance between the GPU and LP fans, enough for me to really wanna use some rubber spacers there.

Also yeah, I've been looking into the SF600 and SX800L for PSU replacements once I find the i5 too annoying to bear performance wise.

It's a fun case to cram stuff into, before getting it I didn't really realize how much space it had in it, although slightly awkward trying to fit a conventional water pump in as the height limits a lot.