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Skyreach brickless build

Kack

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Aug 28, 2017
29
41
Hello all, sorry in advance for the format and being long-winded. I'm not one to post much but I thought it'd be good and of help to the community to show my build. For anyone on the fence, this NFC S4 mini build should be one of the less daunting ones. I used the C8 connection with the ground wire and nothing was chopped or filed on the HDplex or the case.

I did take the foam behind the Noctua emblem to wedge the brick nice and tight. One unfortunate thing about this motherboard is that the front panel pins are too far away from the power switch connections from NFC switch so keep that in mind. I had to use a connector extension that I had left over from another Asus build and wrapped the remaining pins.

The little fan is installed up front blowing inward and through the AC-DC and out the vent in the back. The fan is held only by force of wedging the brick and it works like a charm. Those of you on the fence about something like this or this exact kind of build should feel a little bit better seeing another one out there in the wild.

A good while ago I made a brief intro back when I had my S4-C and talked about my intention to build small form factor, but things changed and so have components. I was stoked for the HDplex combo to finally be available and ordered day one as I've had my S4 mini for some time. Now with the release of the i5 9400F & 1660Ti, I am able to enjoy smooth 1080p gaming on the go within my power and wallet budget. After much lurking and researching of GPU dimensions that would allow me to eschew an external brick, I was finally ready.

I briefly considered the 1650 but my thirst for power had me set the bar higher still as I was thinking originally of GPUs to game in 4k with the Dell brick. However, I don't need a bleeding edge build. Immediately. The power to pump out over 60 frames per second, on GTAV online for example, will suffice.

Following that, I decided to get a 1080p portable display along with the build. The Gaemz monitor has these little pop out legs that are a perfect fit to rest on the S4 mini. Funny how it feels like an evolution from having a screen on top of my GameCube while on vacation so many years ago. I just so happen to be going on vacation to visit family next week so it's the right time to get this done.

I'm happy to say I'm more than satisfied with the way things turned out. That ultra low profile 8 pin (Kareon Kables) saved me from going back to the drawing board and I'm grateful for it. I tried to do my best to logically deal with the cables and tuck/wrap them as I solidified my build.


Step one: acquire all the stuff and things.


The attachment of the Noctua cooler went better than expected. Made sure the heatsink direction was optimal and turned the fan a quarter turn to better manage the cable later on.




Clearance but just barely.




Slotting in the Mobo combo

Test fit with Gigabyte 1650


Test fit with Zotac 1660Ti









All the clearance available for power connector







Final product


Fits my backpack beautifully
 

llee8820

Efficiency Noob
Apr 15, 2019
5
0
Hey, thanks a lot for the post. I'm looking to build and exact same thing.

Would you recommend choosing another motherboard?

Where did you buy the low profile 8 pin?

Anything else I might need?

Thanks!
 

Kack

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Aug 28, 2017
29
41
Hey, thanks a lot for the post. I'm looking to build and exact same thing.

Would you recommend choosing another motherboard?

Where did you buy the low profile 8 pin?

Anything else I might need?

Thanks!
Yeah I might've gone with an Asus board I've always had good luck with those. As Solo linked, I got it from Kareon Kables. Off hand I can't think of anything beside things you might want to know. Magnetic tip screwdriver is your friend. I put the fan up in the corner, got the wire out of the way, and slid the brick down at an angle toward it after GPU was in. You can't put the dual fan bracket / SSD bracket back in with the front panel on at least I didn't see how without taking other components out. Keep that in mind if you're going to take it out and still use it later. There is a little bit of an order to how you place things. The Gigabyte 1650 itx card was a press fit but in a good way. I have a chunk of Noctua foam giving the brick a nice tight fit (without obstructing the back vent on the AC-DC) since I settled on a different card (Zotac 1660ti.)

Josh of course is correct the case is super stable (and sexy) vertical and I saw slightly better thermals for the GPU. Horizontal orientation with half inch feet on the case it took 75% fan to keep ghost recon wildlands from shooting up over 75-77C with 1080p/1440 ultra everything. I got about 13k and change on firestrike and the GPU never went over 75C or 75% fan in the benchmark with a max 1950Mhz clock.

I'm sure I could improve the thermals for the GPU with a higher fan speed but 1: not really loud especially over 6-10 feet away and 2 : not bad temps all things considered. I tried to balance noise and bare minimum fan speed at full load that will hold back thermals from creeping uncontrollably. It's not like 75% is actually what all games are pegging at ~65-69% sufficed a lot of the time. That one smaller fan on the Zotac card is probably the culprit of the noise that you can hear at higher fan speeds.

Hope any of that helps! I'll try to check back later for any questions.
 

Kack

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Aug 28, 2017
29
41
I have the machined on off switch but because of where it connects on that ASRock board it's too short/ thanks ASRock. Walnut front panel,power switch, mobo 24 pin+CPU 8 pin sky wires, and riser ribbon all bought from NFC systems. The sky wires don't interfere with the power switch it just don't reach no pun intended.