Production SENTRY 2.0: Evolution of console-sized gaming PC case

MelbourneFL

Cable Smoosher
Feb 12, 2020
11
8
I anticipate having to underclock significantly in addition to the undervolt.
I don't think that you have to underclock. Just set the power limit and the card will throttle automatically to stay within the power limit. Undervolting will help though as it should allow higher clocks under the same power limit.

Alexander
 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
DR ZĄBER
Oct 17, 2017
401
677


Tough decision whether my calculations are okay or not. On the back it looks like the backplate is actually those 5 mm offset from PCB, on the front through it's worrying that it seems like the bracket stands out quite a few mm as well. Unless there's something off with the bracket being shaved off a bit for some reason.
 

Soul

Chassis Packer
Bronze Supporter
Sep 11, 2020
16
2
Sorry if this was asked before, I tried to search in this thread.
I have recently upgraded my computer to house a R7 3700X but then I remembered the PCI riser is gen 3. So, I am looking to upgrade the PCI-e riser of my Sentry case to PCI-e 4.0. Is this riser here fit within the case? I guess it has aboth the same screw holes positions.



 
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LeandroB

Average Stuffer
Jun 2, 2017
66
60
Have you guys tested the 2.0 with high TDP GPUs? If so, would you have the numbers that we could see?
If not, are you guys interested in testing the Sentry with a 3080?
 

kai535

Chassis Packer
Jul 14, 2020
15
2

Would this plus a 92mm Asetek 645LT fit in the case?
 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
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Oct 17, 2017
401
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Sorry if this was asked before, I tried to search in this thread.
I have recently upgraded my computer to house a R7 3700X but then I remembered the PCI riser is gen 3. So, I am looking to upgrade the PCI-e riser of my Sentry case to PCI-e 4.0. Is this riser here fit within the case? I guess it has aboth the same screw holes positions.

1. This kind of riser should work okay with Sentry 1.1 & 2.0 - in both the riser is held by the plastic slot body and this riser has pcb parallel to the slot body which is a requirement to fit (you can't use the ones with slot being mounted perpendicularly).

2. If this is flexible as in one of the videos linked in description, then you shouldn't have problems, although it is a bit too long for the gap between the card and slot. it has 100 mm long ribbon and the riser included with Sentry 1.1 was ~50 mm long.

3. I would hardly recommend waiting till the release of RTX 3080 before you guys buy any risers stating pci-e 4.0 compliance. For example request riser tests from Optimum Tech. We can't be 100% sure that both the riser vendor did everything according to the spec and that nvidia did everything according to spec for risers, both may have interpreted stuff differently. Also for riser vendors some of them may be just doing yolo and testing whether RX5700 works.

4. You don't actually need pci-e 4.0 bandwidth, we are barely exceeding 8 lanes of pci-e 3.0 bandwidth or 16 lanes of pci-e 2.0 bandwidth with current games on something like 2080TI. That's not something that would actually change just by the new card because most of this is data provided that describes the scene that has to be rendered. What may change it would be playing 240hz at max quality in 4K maybe or something like that. Also Nvidia stated (according to what JayZ said in some of his recent videos) that the tests that results were shown in promotional materials, were made with pci-e 3.0 and you don't actually need pci-e 4.0 yet.

With that said, once Unreal Engine 5.0 rolls out with the new point cloud rendering (or whatever they call it) for photogrammetry and similar high detail modelling, there will be games that will utilise high bandwidth of pci-e directly between the ssd and GPU as nvidia promoted. I'm not sure though whether this will exceed the 16 lanes of pci-e 3.0 because 4 lanes of pci-e 4.0 used for nvme drive is the same bandwidth as 8 lanes of pci-e 3.0 and if right now we are using just over the half of the x16 slot bandwidth with 2080TI I'm not sure if that transmission from the drive will actually utilise the rest. With that said, there might be some kind of limitation of nvme to GPU transmission if the GPU is on 3.0 while drive is on 4.0. Not sure how that works, but since we are not redefining how pci-e lanes are traced on motherboards for this GPU launch, it all goes through some hub on the CPU anyway and bandwidth is bandwidth, so maybe it doesn't matter.

Sadly, there is no blower style gpu in RTX 30 series
Asus is supposedly working on a turbo model. Question is how they will implement this. I would bet that it'll be a bigger turbine blower than usually and it'll have access to air from both sides of the card plus huge vent on the bracket like the reference model has. This kind of thing could potentially work okay in Sentry 2.0.


Would this plus a 92mm Asetek 645LT fit in the case?
I already said on the last page that this card won't fit. It is too tall. And I wouldn't buy anything from zotac until I've seen the actual photos of the card because they are always putting renders that are off and not necessarily showing the actual proportions of the card.

Also I think that unless you have a big beefy radiator, the AIO won't help much with current generations of CPUs as they will ride the edge of thermal limit all the time under load. With previous generations there were significant spikes to those high temperatures when the cpu was actually doing some harder operations like bigger floating point stuff, some increased physics calculation loads in game etc. So it made sense for water cooling with something like 645LT or a slim 120 mm rad because the hoses increased thermal density and those spikes in thermal output weren't instantly affecting the temperature and this made the system quiet. Now it's just that you launch the game and the temperature/thermal output is constantly high because the CPU is riding this thermal limit. I tested 3700X with 120 mm AIO, with C7G, black ridge, IS-40X (direct heat pipes) and the only thing that makes sense is NH-L9a simply because the fan is far from perforation and that you'll hit that thermal ceiling anyway.
 
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SFFGUY

Minimal Tinkerer
New User
Sep 4, 2020
4
2
I believe the EVGA 3080 is the same dimensions as the XC3. I will report back when I know for sure how the fit is.

 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
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Oct 17, 2017
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I believe the EVGA 3080 is the same dimensions as the XC3. I will report back when I know for sure how the fit is.

Not sure if you meant that 3080 FTW is the same size as 3080 XC3, but evga has the same photo for all FTW3 variants AND:
1. FTW is clearly bulkier at the front and is a 2.5 slot card at least - they will use the same cooler shroud and fans, radiator may differ underneath
2. FTW has taller PCB and if that looks like in this photo, then it might fit inside the case, but you won't connect the power plugs because there is no recess for PEG connectors on the card.

So don't go for the FTW, it won't work.
 

tja4430

Chassis Packer
Mar 14, 2020
17
7
I believe Level1Techs did a review on the Sentry 2.0 and did mention in his testing, he thought the bundled PCIe riser solution was PCIe 4.0 compliant based on his testing with a 3700x/5700xt build.

So there is some confidence that it will work well with the new RTX 30 series GPUs.
 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
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Oct 17, 2017
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I believe Level1Techs did a review on the Sentry 2.0 and did mention in his testing, he thought the bundled PCIe riser solution was PCIe 4.0 compliant based on his testing with a 3700x/5700xt build.

So there is some confidence that it will work well with the new RTX 30 series GPUs.
No, that's oversimplification. At the time he was reviewing 5700XT, the riser worked with pci-e 4.0, but with agesa updates for zen 2 cpus the 4.0 support came in and went away etc. I don't know whether on current agesa the pci-e 4.0 will work on it or not. And the initial support might be there because the board/cpu couldn't detect potential issues with the riser. A lot of people had to force pci-e 3.0 in bios settings because of black screens on risers (not only in Sentry 2.0), so that's that.
 

Soul

Chassis Packer
Bronze Supporter
Sep 11, 2020
16
2
Obviously if you let the card have unobstructed flow through, it should work okay, but are you confident that you are going to do a good job with modding the case?

We are not selling case elements separately and thus once you've damaged the case by modding, you'll have stay with it as it is. There's no second takes on that.

Non reference open air design with triple fans seems like a safe choice as the case was designed, tested and reviewed with such cards in mind.
Do you think Sentry 1.1 could support cooling a 320W card even if it's triple fan open air? Does it have enough air flow (especially exhaust) to cool such a card not to mention will it affect CPU temp?
 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
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Oct 17, 2017
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Do you think Sentry 1.1 could support cooling a 320W card even if it's triple fan open air? Does it have enough air flow (especially exhaust) to cool such a card not to mention will it affect CPU temp?
I'm not even sure if 2.0 will support it properly. People were stating they are using 250W TDP cards without problems while for us 180W seemed challenging in 1.0/1.1. Linus did test 250W Titan in his review of Sentry 1.0 so go look at that (the perforation didn't change between 1.0 and 1.1).

On the other hand look at the fact that EVGA did manage to handle this 320W and even 350W of 3090 in 2.2 slot form factor (if that 3090 XC3 is going to be 2.2 slot), so maybe there's something we don't know about that new node that nvidia is using to manufacture those ampere cards. Or maybe there's something about the card layout that will reduce the energy waste (-> heat output) or maybe there's something new about how the coolers are made for this layout which will improve the efficiency. I'd wait for reviews and I'd wait for Optimum Tech's video on the matter.
 

Mosskovskaia

Trash Compacter
Mar 15, 2019
36
12
Sitting back, relax and drinking tea is the best thing to do right now.
Mooreslawisdead suggested they have other cards like an 3080 with 20gb RAM and these cards are the ones they want you to really buy.
AMD hasn’t gives us the new cards and I would wait for those as well.
Dez/Jan should be a Good time to buy a card because than there are the Ti‘s out and you have the full picture even the reviews. Stay calm and don‘t buy anything out of hype.
 

BirdofPrey

Standards Guru
Sep 3, 2015
796
493
Yeah, I'd definitely suggest waiting a bit to plan around a new card. Best to wait for reviews before making a purchase rather than buying sight unseen anyway, and once those are out, you'll be better able to make a determination on what will and won't fit physically and thermally.

I have my doubts on the initial availability anyway with the masses of fans lined up to preorder anything new Nvidia, and AMD's own announcement will be out by the time the next shipment comes in. My hopes for a Radeon victory are low, but doesn't hurt to see what's on offer anyway (and the movement and rumors suggest even if it's not the best it might actually still be decent unlike the last couple rounds).
 

alexsohn

What's an ITX?
New User
Sep 10, 2020
1
0
Hey Saper, I'm planning on modding the case to accommodate the airflow design of the new 3080 cards. For best results I'd like to directly match the powder coating used in the production run of my Sentry (1.1 unit number 1038). I understand if y'all don't want to give away your trade secrets and all, so don't worry about me if you can't give that away. I'll be fine with trying to match it on my own.
 

ChrisWilde

Efficiency Noob
Aug 1, 2020
6
3
@SaperPL Seeing the awesome thermals of the Founders edition on the 3080 and considering that we will probably not see any blower models coming out, I am considering drilling holes on the other side of the Sentry 2.0 in order to accommodate for that second fan. That way I will also get zero amount of hot air on my CPU as well. Would you recommend that? Any problems that could come up because of this? Should I follow a specific process?
 

SaperPL

Master of Cramming
DR ZĄBER
Oct 17, 2017
401
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Hey Saper, I'm planning on modding the case to accommodate the airflow design of the new 3080 cards. For best results I'd like to directly match the powder coating used in the production run of my Sentry (1.1 unit number 1038). I understand if y'all don't want to give away your trade secrets and all, so don't worry about me if you can't give that away. I'll be fine with trying to match it on my own.
For the colour/tone, if you have a black case, essentially a matte black automotive lacquer fixture will do. But standard matte black, not metalic, not space something, not gold-ish black, flat matte black.

If you have a white case and you want to drill holes in it without repainting the whole cover, it will be a bloody mess as matching a white on white fixture or nail polish lacquer or something like that will always be visible on white, you will see it even when the tone is exactly right because the structure of the paint will be different and because of that the light will reflect differently from the surface. Your touch up places around the modded spots will have flat surface that will get glossy.

If you want to do it properly, go with it to the shop that does powder coating and show it to them, tell them that this is a high graininess powder coating ask them if they can source a matching powder in structure and colour. And then find a shop that does paint stripping with professional chemical submersion paint stripping line and not just guys at the shop that will spray the element because you'll end up with a lot of leftovers from old paint in the perforation and either you'll have bad spots there or they will damage the panel by scrubbing off the rest.

Do the modding after taking off the powder coating and powder coat it again at a shop.

If you have a black unit, you could try drilling and touching up the paint with automotive fixture, but make sure to do this with a table fixed drill and not an off-hand and make sure the element is fixed properly, and drill from the outside of the cover and not from the inside. If you go from the inside you might end up with big chunks of paint break off around the holes. The automotive lacquer fixture will be good for touching up hole edges, but not bigger surfaces as again you'll end up with different surface effect.


@SaperPL Seeing the awesome thermals of the Founders edition on the 3080 and considering that we will probably not see any blower models coming out, I am considering drilling holes on the other side of the Sentry 2.0 in order to accommodate for that second fan. That way I will also get zero amount of hot air on my CPU as well. Would you recommend that? Any problems that could come up because of this? Should I follow a specific process?
One thing is that whether you will do the good job on this or make a mess of the paint. Look at what I've just wrote above.

Second thing is that what kind of holes you want to make - same kind of perforation, then it's okay, but drilling a huge circular hole like the one Paul did in his video, you might damage the inlet and the cover will start flexing and not coming together well on some spots because of that.

Third thing is that maybe you could get away with just sealing off the card compartment with a fitted sheet of metal and using the open air board partner model.

All in all, I would recommend to wait for some SFF specific comparative tests of board partner designs against the FE model, I'm interested in how EVGA XC3 will work out to be specific.


The whole issue with this pass-through fan design on FE you are not noticing is that once again this is a problem of how much people will actually buy this kind of card in the current generation. Whether there are drawback of this kind of design that we don't know about yet. After a year it may look like there is no FE models on the market because there's no interest in it and people went mostly after board partner designs. If that happens, we end up with a case modified/redesigned specifically for one generation of cards that came up, was glorious and went away and we have now a perforation that breaks the aesthetics/design of the case.

It's not like we are ignoring the issue. It's that we haven't found a correct solution for it yet, and we don't have all the data we need to make a decision about this. If the XC3 card gets tested in SFF and it gets similar performance without the need of pass-through perforation, then it might mean we'll stick to the current design because there's no magic about this new flow design. But again, this new FE design might be something that would especially work out perfectly for Sentry on a vertical stand if it had a pass through vent and this would be a free cheat code to enable great performance in Sentry, and it might mean Sentry (and other console layout cases) gets better performance than back-2-back layouts because they will have to push the air through the PSU.

We have tried drawing various designs for it (handling this card) since the leaks of these cards popped up and it always comes back to either making a random vent not matching rest of the cover aesthetically (and you do want a nicely designed piece on your desk) or making the cover inlet safety functionality useless on top of making the whole construction more complex and expensive to manufacture because of that.

So before all of you pick up the drill and damage your cases, get a photo of the case, put it in photoshop or gimp and try designing the new vent and see if you like the effect.
 

Dustbunnyck

Caliper Novice
Nov 10, 2019
31
5
If I could request a couple of changes to the next models: For a Sentry 3.0 having a spot for a slim optical drive(I know I may be the only one to request it but it would make that a perfect TV box) and for a Sentry 2.1 having either adjustable feet or taller feet for the horizontal mount. My GPU would stay a bit cooler with a bit more space and a lot of TV stands have enough open space to afford it. I still love mine its been my Daily computer and it works wonderfully. Amazing case!!