Prototyping Sidearmd T1, CNC + AIO + 9.35L

Wahaha360

Overhaul
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SFFLAB
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Feb 23, 2015
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Update 2019-04-06 : Prototype 2, better ventilation (thermals), compatibility, proportions closer to golden ratio



* Prototype 2 will support multiple PSU mounting positions, including 90 degree rotated PSU mounting.



Update 2019-03-31 : CPU Cooler Open Bench Test Result

1. Alphacool LT240 shows near identical performance to XSPC TX240
2. 2x Noctua A12x25 fans vs. Noctua A12x25 + A12x15 makes little difference.
3. Koolance HX-CU420V (120mm Radiator, Copper) is 3°C from the Alphacool LT240 (240mm Radiator, Copper), which is equal or better than most 240mm (Aluminum) AIOs, like Corsair H100i Pro, NZXT X52.



* CPU NOT Delided



Asus Z390-I 160W OC Settings


Asus Z390-I 240W OC Settings




AIJIA 120 Custom Radiator


AIJIA 240 Custom Radiator


Alphacool LT240


Corsair H60 2018


Koolance HX-CU420V


HWL LS120


Noctua NH-D15 (2x NF-A14 PWM on one fan Y Splitter cable)


Noctua NH-L12S
Given the NH-D15 results, I don't see the need to test NH-L12S, 9900K OC at 200W+ is just way over the intended use. 120 AIO is the better choice imo.

XSPC TX240






Update 2019-01-19 : Noctua L12S fit verified, all 70mm of it (2 GPU Slot mode)




Update 2019-01-14 : Prototype 1, need to work on lighting :(



Update 2019-01-12 : CES 2019, 120mm AIO > most 240mm AIO for i9-9900K



Update 2019-01-07 : 240 AIO support and no size increase (working it out with OEM), details on this post.






Update 2019-01-05 : Space Gray, Black and Silver prototypes for CES 2019

After the initial project stalled, https://smallformfactor.net/forum/threads/ncase-project-sidearm.1525, I couldn't give up.

Special thanks:
Necere for letting me use the name and the layout
dondan for giving me some tips about spacing
guryhwa for helping I/O and PCIe riser

I got a i9-9900K and RTX Titan, and I need something small enough to travel with, so I created a case for the obsessed - like myself.


Specification

Material:
CNCed from 10mm 6061 aluminum + 1.5mm aluminum metal brackets
Side panels: Vented Panel / Tempered Glass / Acrylic, window on both sides
Colors: Anodized sand blasted space gray for exterior, anodized black for interior

Dimensions (W x H x D): 210 x 135 x 330, 9.35L
Graphic cards support: Three-Slot Slot GPU up to 315mm
Motherboard support: Mini-ITX
Power Supply support: SFX
CPU Heatsink support: Up to 70mm height (Noctua L12S)
Water cooling support: 120mm AIO at 30mm thick
Drives: 2 x 2.5" HDD/SSD
I/O ports: 2 x Type-C, Power button
PCIe Riser: Included

Target Price: USD 240 - 270, no crowdfunding, subsidized by me


Renderings


* 2 x 120mm fans + 30mm thick radiator + custom DDC Block Pump


* back panel is interchangeable to support 3 slot GPU or 2 slot GPU
* 2 slot GPU configuration allows for 70mm CPU cooler height, ideal for Noctua L12S
* 3 slot GPU configuration allows for 48mm CPU cooler height, ideal for AIO block pump


* 3 slot GPU configuration provides intake clearance for 2 slot blower GPUs behind glass window


* flip the case to get better cooling on high end parts


* ventilated side panel

Feedback appreciated!
 
Last edited:

Wahaha360

Overhaul
Original poster
SFFLAB
NCASE
Feb 23, 2015
676
1,758
Renderings


* 2 x 120mm fans + 30mm thick radiator + custom DDC Block Pump


* back panel is interchangeable to support 3 slot GPU or 2 slot GPU
* 2 slot GPU configuration allows for 70mm CPU cooler height, ideal for Noctua L12S
* 3 slot GPU configuration allows for 48mm CPU cooler height, ideal for AIO block pump


* 3 slot GPU configuration provides intake clearance for 2 slot blower GPUs behind glass window


* flip the case to get better cooling on high end parts
 
Last edited:

rfarmer

SFF Guru
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Jul 7, 2017
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Great work @Wahaha360. I have seen a lot of people asking for 3 slot GPU support, this should make them happy.
 

chyll2

Airflow Optimizer
Jun 27, 2018
246
167
This is actually my ideal case.

I really like the 70mm clearance I have with Steck but I see it being wasted if one will go AIO route. The space can easily be used to accommodate thicker GPU cards.
 
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teodoro

Trash Compacter
Oct 8, 2018
49
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3 slot (or at least 2.5-2.7) is definitely a big selling point. Maybe it’d boost the volume too much, but L12S + 3 slot would be very attractive to me. Could there be a way to have a separate side panel which could extend that compartment in addition to the 3 slot spine placement? Or perhaps it’s time to start toying with that water stuff…

Either way, I’m happy that internal 120mm fan mounts are becoming more accepted in this layout. Semi related questions: would a a 240 rad with only one fan outperform a 120 rad, and would that be feasible in this case? Also I might be blind, but where are the 2.5 inch drives going?
 
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Arboreal

Master of Cramming
Silver Supporter
Oct 11, 2015
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That's another great design, with a chunky alu build with CNC action.
I really like the 2 or 3 slot design system that opens up a lot of possibilities in cooling and GPU choices.

It was all going so well, BUT you have lost the most important design element from the original Sidearmd...the HANDLE. :p
 

fabio

King of Cable Management
Gold Supporter
Apr 6, 2016
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I love it!!! Only one comment:

Please, move down the MB and but the fan on top for exhaust.

I repeat this in every thread, the problem with the SFF case is the exhaust :)

Amazing job man!!
 

Wahaha360

Overhaul
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SFFLAB
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Feb 23, 2015
676
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3 slot (or at least 2.5-2.7) is definitely a big selling point. Maybe it’d boost the volume too much, but L12S + 3 slot would be very attractive to me. Could there be a way to have a separate side panel which could extend that compartment in addition to the 3 slot spine placement? Or perhaps it’s time to start toying with that water stuff…
L12S + 3 GPU Slot will make the case about ~155mm wide, at that width, there are more efficient layouts, like the M1. For that reason, the current width at 135mm is the most I would go to maintain layout efficiency.

Either way, I’m happy that internal 120mm fan mounts are becoming more accepted in this layout. Semi related questions: would a a 240 rad with only one fan outperform a 120 rad, and would that be feasible in this case? Also I might be blind, but where are the 2.5 inch drives going?
A 240 rad will need 2x 120x25mm fans, that will make the case 25mm taller (135x235x330, 10.5L), not the most efficient layout.

Using a 240 rad with *single 120mm fan means there will be heat trapped near the motherboard tray, that might be worse for temps.

2.5" drives are mounted between the Front Panel and SFX, will show more details once we have the prototype at CES.
 

Wahaha360

Overhaul
Original poster
SFFLAB
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Feb 23, 2015
676
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That's another great design, with a chunky alu build with CNC action.
I really like the 2 or 3 slot design system that opens up a lot of possibilities in cooling and GPU choices.

It was all going so well, BUT you have lost the most important design element from the original Sidearmd...the HANDLE. :p
Will reveal later once I confirm it's doable ;)
 
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Wahaha360

Overhaul
Original poster
SFFLAB
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Feb 23, 2015
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I love it!!! Only one comment:

Please, move down the MB and but the fan on top for exhaust.

I repeat this in every thread, the problem with the SFF case is the exhaust :)

Amazing job man!!
Flipping the case, where the two 120x25mm fans are at the top and in exhaust mode works even better.

The SFX bracket is designed that it can flip the PSU orientation as well, so the SFX can exhaust through the top of the case.

 
Last edited:

prava

Average Stuffer
Mar 21, 2017
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Looks fresh. Two things, though: could you rotate 180º the radiator? The you way you have it placed the ports are on the opposite part of the block. Also, you will have a very nasty bend by the psu. I think rotating the radiator would fix this and I don't see what problems It should introduce. Well, yes, fans will have same space between them, but other than that...

Also, from a cost stand-point, isn't CNC much epensive than stamped panels? Or is it that for low volumes CNC makes up for it because tooling costs are much reduced?

edit: forgot 2 other points:

a) Fan-filter options?
b) Chance to include some feet? Raising the case would do miracles when the fans are on the bottom as intakes.
 

Wahaha360

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Feb 23, 2015
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Looks fresh.
I was wondering when you are going to show up :)

Two things, though: could you rotate 180º the radiator? The you way you have it placed the ports are on the opposite part of the block. Also, you will have a very nasty bend by the psu. I think rotating the radiator would fix this and I don't see what problems It should introduce. Well, yes, fans will have same space between them, but other than that...
TBD, this is something we have been discussing internally for a while. Once I have the prototype at CES, I will know if this is possible.

You know how radiators have a forehead (G 1/4 ports) and chin, the chin is currently under the motherboard. *Some 120mm radiators can be rotated 180º, it really depends on the total length of the radiator.

That being said, I am routing the 6mm ID / 10mm OD tubes above the PSU and between the Front Panel and PSU into the radiator. For the smaller OD tubes, it's non-issue. For 16mm OD tubes, I don't know yet.

a) Fan-filter options?
b) Chance to include some feet? Raising the case would do miracles when the fans are on the bottom as intakes.
a) magnetic filter between the panel and fans
b) yes, same ones as the A4 and C4

Also, from a cost stand-point, isn't CNC much epensive than stamped panels? Or is it that for low volumes CNC makes up for it because tooling costs are much reduced?
The project will be subsidized by me, so it will be very similar in price with other cases on SFF, but limited in quantity.

Since Apple and other smartphone companies lowered their order quantity for 2019, there is surplus CNC and anodizing capacity. There is a real probability that I can get high quality CNC and Space Gray in one go. I been waiting for years to do this.
 

rfarmer

SFF Guru
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Jul 7, 2017
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Do you have plans for case feet? It looks like either orientation would benefit from airflow from the bottom of the case.
 

fabio

King of Cable Management
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Apr 6, 2016
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Flipping the case, where the two 120x25mm fans are at the top and in exhaust mode works even better.

The SFX bracket is designed that it can flip the PSU orientation as well, so the SFX can exhaust through the top of the case.

IT’S PERFECT!
 
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Poblopuablo

Cable-Tie Ninja
Jan 14, 2018
167
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Would be nice to see support for slim 120mm fan on the top/bottom depending on how your orient it. (The side opposite the 120mm aio/120mm fan)
 

Wahaha360

Overhaul
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Feb 23, 2015
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Would be nice to see support for slim 120mm fan on the top/bottom depending on how your orient it. (The side opposite the 120mm aio/120mm fan)
We already tested the XSPC TX240 20mm thick radiator on the 9900K, it’s not much better than the Koolance 30FPI 120mm radiator.

To support a thin rad will increase case height, thus volume by 0.5L, didn’t make sense for a 3C difference if you consider margin of error could be 1-2C.
 
Last edited:

Wahaha360

Overhaul
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SFFLAB
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Feb 23, 2015
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Do you have plans for case feet? It looks like either orientation would benefit from airflow from the bottom of the case.
The case feet will be the same ones used on A4 and C4, they are pretty standard.

Optimal orientation depends on dust / noise / cooling expectations.

With the AIO in the bottom of the case, you will have positive pressure = less dusty inside.

However, with AIO on the top, you will have better cooling, where hot air is exhausted right out of the case, with the down side being negative pressure = more dusty inside.