Concept SFFtime presents: N-ATX - 14 L case with ATX mbo and psu, 4-slot gpu and 360mm rad support!

Eevor

Minimal Tinkerer
New User
Feb 11, 2020
3
0
Nice case; personally I was hoping N-ATX would be able to use at least a couple of the expansion slots (for me, expansion slots are the only realy ATX benefit over ITX). Still waiting for a competitor to Cerberus. :)
 

Kit

Average Stuffer
Nov 2, 2019
70
27
Nice case; personally I was hoping N-ATX would be able to use at least a couple of the expansion slots (for me, expansion slots are the only realy ATX benefit over ITX). Still waiting for a competitor to Cerberus. :)
I mean it wouldnt be very hard to run more than one riser cable or a bifurcation cable and a 2-3 slot gpu... depends how secure the mountings are i guess
 

duynguyenle

Airflow Optimizer
Aug 20, 2019
246
218
Nice case; personally I was hoping N-ATX would be able to use at least a couple of the expansion slots (for me, expansion slots are the only realy ATX benefit over ITX). Still waiting for a competitor to Cerberus. :)
With the right configuration I reckon you could get 3-4 PCI devices in this case with an ATX board (using both the upper and lower mount), obviously this will force you into watercooling the CPU using a 120mm rad, and restricts the maximum length for all PCI devices, but it's all about tradeoffs amirite
 

riba2233

King of Cable Management
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SFF Time
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Jan 2, 2019
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Nice case; personally I was hoping N-ATX would be able to use at least a couple of the expansion slots (for me, expansion slots are the only realy ATX benefit over ITX). Still waiting for a competitor to Cerberus. :)
Thanks, but this was never meant to me competitor to Cerberus. Main configuration planned for this case is the one in the first render, with ATX board and psu, triple slot huge gpu and some drives, and I did that because that is what 99% of people need, and it's still below 15 L and has extremely narrow footprint unlike some other sff cases.

All other configurations, with gpu in upper slot or with some big radiators is just a bonus since it could be done, maybe not because it should 😅
 
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sw0ng

What's an ITX?
New User
Oct 1, 2020
1
0
Hi,

Yes 160mm is really a hard limit, I had to draw a line somewhere, but there are many options even in 140mm size, like 1000W units from Seasonic or 1200W unit from silverstone. And I would argue that you can't really cool more than 1200W in this case.
Can you elaborate on what you mean by "hard limit"? Does the chassis design actually prevent me from installing a 170mm+ PSU?

It would be nice to have a Seasonic Titanium PSU installed but unfortunately all of those models are 170mm.
 

riba2233

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Can you elaborate on what you mean by "hard limit"? Does the chassis design actually prevent me from installing a 170mm+ PSU?

It would be nice to have a Seasonic Titanium PSU installed but unfortunately all of those models are 170mm.
Yes, that is correct, there are some case parts sticking out under the PSU.
 

Eevor

Minimal Tinkerer
New User
Feb 11, 2020
3
0
Thanks, but this was never meant to me competitor to Cerberus. Main configuration planned for this case is the one in the first render, with ATX board and psu, triple slot huge gpu and some drives, and I did that because that is what 99% of people need, and it's still below 15 L and has extremely narrow footprint unlike some other sff cases.
I don't think getting an SFX power supply (which have become pretty mainstream, as it's obvious that nowadays ATX is just a waste of space) is an obstacle for people who are interested in niche and expensive SFF cases. If it were a mass-produced coolermaster - maybe. But the 99% number is most definitely not true, simply based on looking at the builds in cases that support both sfx and atx.

Antways, good luck with the project, I was just sad that it wasn't what I was looking for after all :)
 

Mackan

Cable-Tie Ninja
Jun 2, 2016
197
113
I like details and symmetry, so I will comment on some...
  • Consider positioning the power connector plug like on the P-ATX V2, i.e. vertically above the motherboard I/O area. I think it looks much nicer here, compared to having it above the motherboard. It might also help free up some space to allow positioning 2*80mm fans at the top?
  • In one of the pictures, a top 80mm fan is visible, but you can see the fan mounting holes on the right side, making it look asymmetrically mounted? If you know what I mean. I would prefer it mount/look symmetrical there. You probably try to take advantage of the grill at the top for mounting, which causes this. But consider providing additional fan holes in the sheet metal, instead, is possible. Perhaps also consider 92mm fans if possible, since they are more common.
  • Consider offering a SFX back mounting bracket when the SFX power supply is positioned at the bottom, where the graphics card usually is. Will make it look a bit nicer.
Other than that I think it looks nice. It's a bummer that 170mm PSU:s don't fit, since I have trusty fanless Seasonic 170mm.
 

duynguyenle

Airflow Optimizer
Aug 20, 2019
246
218
I like details and symmetry, so I will comment on some...
  • Consider positioning the power connector plug like on the P-ATX V2, i.e. vertically above the motherboard I/O area. I think it looks much nicer here, compared to having it above the motherboard. It might also help free up some space to allow positioning 2*80mm fans at the top?
  • In one of the pictures, a top 80mm fan is visible, but you can see the fan mounting holes on the right side, making it look asymmetrically mounted? If you know what I mean. I would prefer it mount/look symmetrical there. You probably try to take advantage of the grill at the top for mounting, which causes this. But consider providing additional fan holes in the sheet metal, instead, is possible. Perhaps also consider 92mm fans if possible, since they are more common.
  • Consider offering a SFX back mounting bracket when the SFX power supply is positioned at the bottom, where the graphics card usually is. Will make it look a bit nicer.
Other than that I think it looks nice. It's a bummer that 170mm PSU:s don't fit, since I have trusty fanless Seasonic 170mm.
Counterpoint on the fans:
1. 92mm fans don't look like it will fit. The case is 98mm wide but some room is taken up by side panels and chassis flange.

2. The top fans are only held in by two fan screws. The set of left screws are covered by the front/top plate. It won't be possible to make it symmetrical like you said without radically changing how the front/top plate is assembled. Again, you need to account for access room. I have the V1 which has a similar arrangement for its top 60mm fan mount, and it works well. Your preference is not really applicable here if it requires re-engineering the whole top of the case and potentially having to re-design the front/top facade as well. I'd also like to add that having the fan mounts where it is currently gives you some room to hide the power cable extension behind the fans, making it rather tidy.

3. It makes little sense to place the power inlet above the motherboard, since it will limit your flexibility and available height for the upper PCI-e mount, in the case that you're making use of those (as well as potentially running foul of taller coolers). The PATXv2 power socket was placed where it is because of the reduced height available above the motherboard. Since the N-ATX increasees this clearance (back to P-ATXv1 levels, in order to accommodate fans), it makes no sense not to use this additional clearance for the power socket, it would be wasted space otherwise. Also, putting the power port above the board allows it to be centre-mounted, making it symmetrical (you seem to prefer symmetry based on your previous post). If anything, the suggestion would be to keep the cut-out above the motherboard like it is, but move it slightly horizontally to center it along the width of the case.
 
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Mackan

Cable-Tie Ninja
Jun 2, 2016
197
113
Counterpoint on the fans:
1. 92mm fans don't look like it will fit. The case is 98mm wide but some room is taken up by side panels and chassis flange.

2. The top fans are only held in by two fan screws. The set of left screws are covered by the front/top plate. It won't be possible to make it symmetrical like you said without radically changing how the front/top plate is assembled. Again, you need to account for access room. I have the V1 which has a similar arrangement for its top 60mm fan mount, and it works well. Your preference is not really applicable here if it requires re-engineering the whole top of the case and potentially having to re-design the front/top facade as well. I'd also like to add that having the fan mounts where it is currently gives you some room to hide the power cable extension behind the fans, making it rather tidy.

3. It makes little sense to place the power inlet above the motherboard, since it will limit your flexibility and available height for the upper PCI-e mount, in the case that you're making use of those (as well as potentially running foul of taller coolers). The PATXv2 power socket was placed where it is because of the reduced height available above the motherboard. Since the N-ATX increasees this clearance (back to P-ATXv1 levels, in order to accommodate fans), it makes no sense not to use this additional clearance for the power socket, it would be wasted space otherwise. Also, putting the power port above the board allows it to be centre-mounted, making it symmetrical (you seem to prefer symmetry based on your previous post). If anything, the suggestion would be to keep the cut-out above the motherboard like it is, but move it slightly horizontally to center it along the width of the case.
Well reasoned. A re-engineering of the case, to make it slightly more wider, isn't something I expect, but I wanted to leave my comments anyway.
 
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riba2233

King of Cable Management
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SFF Time
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I don't think getting an SFX power supply (which have become pretty mainstream, as it's obvious that nowadays ATX is just a waste of space) is an obstacle for people who are interested in niche and expensive SFF cases. If it were a mass-produced coolermaster - maybe. But the 99% number is most definitely not true, simply based on looking at the builds in cases that support both sfx and atx.

Antways, good luck with the project, I was just sad that it wasn't what I was looking for after all :)
Thank you, no problem :)

I would say that a lot of people will benefit from ATX psu support, since many are downsizing, and we must admit that even though SFX psu's are more mainstream now, they are still harder to find, have worse pricing, and lower power. In some countries they are either impossible to find or you only have a few options with terrible price. Also, I didn't loose anything with including ATX psu support, so no problems there, you have a choice and that is a good thing in any case :)

I like details and symmetry, so I will comment on some...
  • Consider positioning the power connector plug like on the P-ATX V2, i.e. vertically above the motherboard I/O area. I think it looks much nicer here, compared to having it above the motherboard. It might also help free up some space to allow positioning 2*80mm fans at the top?
  • In one of the pictures, a top 80mm fan is visible, but you can see the fan mounting holes on the right side, making it look asymmetrically mounted? If you know what I mean. I would prefer it mount/look symmetrical there. You probably try to take advantage of the grill at the top for mounting, which causes this. But consider providing additional fan holes in the sheet metal, instead, is possible. Perhaps also consider 92mm fans if possible, since they are more common.
  • Consider offering a SFX back mounting bracket when the SFX power supply is positioned at the bottom, where the graphics card usually is. Will make it look a bit nicer.
Other than that I think it looks nice. It's a bummer that 170mm PSU:s don't fit, since I have trusty fanless Seasonic 170mm.

Thank you for your comments! Now we are getting into some design choices I had to make. I mostly agree with you, but I had to do some of these things for compatibility and manufacturing reasons.

Like for instance, mounting of top 80mm fans is conditioned by the top grill and the way that he mask works. 92 mm fans would be extremely tight, there is 92.8mm of space without accounting for paint and tolerances, so you will maybe be able to friction mount it 😋
Only option here would be to provide additional bracket for mounting fans from the bottom, but I would have to think about it.

Regarding AC connector mounting, I will probably have to tweak that to allow for >135mm gpu's in 4-slot mount to fit properly.

SFX bracket for bottom position, yes I am planning on supplying it with upper gpu mount kit.


Counterpoint on the fans:
1. 92mm fans don't look like it will fit. The case is 98mm wide but some room is taken up by side panels and chassis flange.

2. The top fans are only held in by two fan screws. The set of left screws are covered by the front/top plate. It won't be possible to make it symmetrical like you said without radically changing how the front/top plate is assembled. Again, you need to account for access room. I have the V1 which has a similar arrangement for its top 60mm fan mount, and it works well. Your preference is not really applicable here if it requires re-engineering the whole top of the case and potentially having to re-design the front/top facade as well. I'd also like to add that having the fan mounts where it is currently gives you some room to hide the power cable extension behind the fans, making it rather tidy.

3. It makes little sense to place the power inlet above the motherboard, since it will limit your flexibility and available height for the upper PCI-e mount, in the case that you're making use of those (as well as potentially running foul of taller coolers). The PATXv2 power socket was placed where it is because of the reduced height available above the motherboard. Since the N-ATX increasees this clearance (back to P-ATXv1 levels, in order to accommodate fans), it makes no sense not to use this additional clearance for the power socket, it would be wasted space otherwise. Also, putting the power port above the board allows it to be centre-mounted, making it symmetrical (you seem to prefer symmetry based on your previous post). If anything, the suggestion would be to keep the cut-out above the motherboard like it is, but move it slightly horizontally to center it along the width of the case.
Thank you, you really understand the design, I couldn't agree more :)
 

Retrias

Average Stuffer
Sep 28, 2018
63
34
While I will be using an SFX psu for this build , I can see why some people would want to use an ATX PSU. Either because of some feature they would need like being a high wattage passive model and the likes
 
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Raivo

Cable Smoosher
Sep 29, 2020
8
3
Regarding AC connector mounting. Could it be possible to route it to bottom back corner where those ventilation are for alternative placement? Im guessing it would need to be routed via front panel with semi long cable.
 

duynguyenle

Airflow Optimizer
Aug 20, 2019
246
218
Well reasoned. A re-engineering of the case, to make it slightly more wider, isn't something I expect, but I wanted to leave my comments anyway.
If the asymetry of the fan screws bothers you, one easy fix might be to use black screws which would blend in more with the rest of the case and alleviate the visual dissonance I think
 

HYPERBOLOCO

Trash Compacter
Sep 27, 2015
35
12
Well reasoned. A re-engineering of the case, to make it slightly more wider, isn't something I expect, but I wanted to leave my comments anyway.
It comes down to the fact that he is a single man outfit with limited manufacturing. I had similar suggestions and I'm sure they could be implemented by a big company like Lian Li with lots of fancy tech but then they would never make a case like this.
 
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Retrias

Average Stuffer
Sep 28, 2018
63
34
Never is a rather strong word considering lianli is known previously to make weird cases such as the o7s and the likes
 
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riba2233

King of Cable Management
Original poster
SFF Time
Bronze Supporter
Jan 2, 2019
683
1,080
www.sfftime.com
Regarding AC connector mounting. Could it be possible to route it to bottom back corner where those ventilation are for alternative placement? Im guessing it would need to be routed via front panel with semi long cable.
Sorry I don't quite get what you're saying, if you have sfx psu in lower position, you can either plug the ac cable directly into psu or use the same ac extension cable that comes from the upper back side.

It comes down to the fact that he is a single man outfit with limited manufacturing. I had similar suggestions and I'm sure they could be implemented by a big company like Lian Li with lots of fancy tech but then they would never make a case like this.
It is not about that, I don't need lian-li or something like that, I can do everything I want on my own, locally and I like it that way. It is just that I don't want to do some modifications that bump the volume for really small and niche gains, sff cases are always a fine balance between volume, compatibility, footprint, ventilation, etc.
 
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SpringerTheNerd

Cable-Tie Ninja
Sep 7, 2017
163
175
This is a beefy boi for sure. This might be a good case for my brother 🤔

Any reason to buy another one of your cases I s a good reason for me haha 😅
 
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