Smallest case that supports optical drive and dual-slot low-profile GPU?

RichterSnipes

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Aug 17, 2019
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I'm currently rocking a Silverstone ML09 that houses a low-profile GPU and a slim Blu-ray drive. It's about the size of a launch Xbox One. Having a system that doubles as both a media center and modest gaming rig slotted into my entertainment room shelving unit is an awesome feeling. I wonder if I can get smaller, though.


In the spoiler is an overhead view of the ML09. I've got the entire left side of it in use with two case fans, a dual-slot low-profile GPU, motherboard, components, and a Blu-ray drive. The right side, though, seems like it could stand to be cut down. The HDD/SDD caddy would be entirely unnecessary if only using M.2 slots or clever mounts for SSDs, and the SFX power supply could be swapped out with a Flex ATX power supply. Or maybe something like an internal HDPLEX PSU could work, too.

It'd be awesome if Silverstone themselves made a case just like that. They already make cases close enough to its form factor, and they sell their own Flex ATX PSUs, too. As far as I'm aware, though, no one makes a case similar to what I'm thinking of. Does anyone know if there's a case smaller than the ML09 one that will support both a slim optical disc drive and a dual-slot low profile GPU? If there's a smaller case that also somehow supports standard GPUs (likely ITX-sized, if so), that's even better.

If not, my theorized cut-down version of this case could be a very interesting project to tackle! I feel like it could provide the ultimate form factor for a full-fleged entertainment PC.
 

ignsvn

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Let's see.. Based on those requirements, perhaps:


Edit: Shoot. I completely forgot the optical disc requirement. Try Chieftec BT04B U3 Amazon product
 
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RichterSnipes

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Aug 17, 2019
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Edit: Shoot. I completely forgot the optical disc requirement. Try Chieftec BT04B U3
That's an interesting case, alright! And it supports full-height graphics cards, to boot. It looks like it's quite a bit bigger than the ML09, though. This is a 10.5 L case, whereas the ML09 is roughly 7 liters.
 

Sicaris

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I'm afraid I don't have a case suggestion but I also have the same requirements. I've been thinking about switching to either an HDPlex 200w psu or a 12v supply to cut down on space. I'd love to figure out a way to get it into something like the inwin Chopin but it's too much of a stretch to get the ODD in too.
 

RichterSnipes

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In case anyone needs a bit of a visual to see what I'm thinking of, here's a picture edit I made of the back of the ML09. The half with the PSU and drive caddy has been shrunk to about the size taken up by a Flex ATX PSU. I feel like making something like this would be very possible:

 

ignsvn

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There's this Antec ISK 300, but it uses proprietary internal PSU 150w. And I'm not sure if it's still in production.
 

RichterSnipes

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There's this Antec ISK 300, but it uses proprietary internal PSU 150w. And I'm not sure if it's still in production.
I've seen several pictures of it before, and it's definitely neat. However, it only supports a single-slot expansion card. Most low-profile GPUs nowadays are dual-slot.
 

ignsvn

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Also proprietary 160/180w PSU. And rather hard to find.
 
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RichterSnipes

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Also proprietary 160/180w PSU. And rather hard to find.
That certainly fits the bill! It's a peculiar design, like a prebuilt machine you'd see at a workplace. Curious if the PSU is removable, even if I'm most likely not going to pursue this option.
 

Sicaris

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There's a build here from a while ago using the realan e-i7 depending on how ambitious you are you may be able to get everything including the ODD to fit. Unfortunately the album in the OP seems to be dead.

 
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RichterSnipes

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There's a build here from a while ago using the realan e-i7 depending on how ambitious you are you may be able to get everything including the ODD to fit. Unfortunately the album in the OP seems to be dead.

Now that's more like it! I really like the look of it. It's sleek and just screams "entertainment center", which is always a plus for me.

A few things, though. First off, I'm not sure how much clearance there is for GPUs in terms of width. It sounds like there's just enough room to hide away the DVI port of dual-slot graphics cards, but I don't know if the shroud would have issues butting up to the edge of the case. Second, I'm not sure how I feel about using an external power. I'm sure I could warm up to it, but I like the idea of everything being incorporated inside the machine itself. And third, I'm considering upgrading to a 4K UHD Blu-ray drive at some point to play UHD movies on disc without needing to rip them. There aren't many as it is, and finding one that's slot-loading is a real ordeal. This is the only one I could find that might work. If I were a rich person, I'd be fine hopping on this. But I'm not, so this price is pretty ridiculous to justify.

... I'm quickly spiraling down a road where only a custom case will be the perfect solution, aren't I?
 
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Sicaris

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Custom certainly has the benefit of being exactly what you want...

I think you may be able to fit a Meanwell 200w unit in front of the motherboard but it's certainly all going to be a little tight and warm.
 

Jello

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Nov 15, 2016
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Streacom F7C

Pretty to close to what you're looking for, except you'd have to run a power brick, and as you mentioned, most lopro GPUs are now dual slot anyways.
 

RichterSnipes

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Streacom F7C

Pretty to close to what you're looking for, except you'd have to run a power brick, and as you mentioned, most lopro GPUs are now dual slot anyways.
I've taken a good look at various Streamcon cases in the past. I really dig their clean looks. Makes them feel like discrete modern electronic devices in an entertainment center.

It is kind of frustrating as to why there's such a disparity between cases that support one PCI-e slot cards versus two. There must only exist a real niche market for game console-esque super small form factor cases.
 
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Windfall

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In case anyone needs a bit of a visual to see what I'm thinking of, here's a picture edit I made of the back of the ML09. The half with the PSU and drive caddy has been shrunk to about the size taken up by a Flex ATX PSU. I feel like making something like this would be very possible:


I really like that idea! Too bad it doesn't exist.
 
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LeChuck81

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May 6, 2019
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What about the Streacom FC9 Alpha?

It's a 7,5 L chassis and it has a bonus point in being a fanless chassis. If I got it right, this building is going to be a living room media center/light-to-medium gaming machine, a fanless system could be a big plus.

I mean, I like much more the FC8/FC7 variant, but I'm understanding you don't want to go with an external brick so the FC9 should do the trick, the bigger FC10 being almost the same as your ML09.
 

chx

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BTW that Chieftec BT04B U3 is super neat but if they didn't waste the space on a 3.5" bay it could have 80mm back fans :( It would be perfect for me.
 
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ignsvn

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BTW that Chieftec BT04B U3 is super neat but if they didn't waste the space on a 3.5" bay it could have 80mm back fans :( It would be perfect for me.

I mentioned that Chieftec because you need optical drive. Perhaps if you use slim optical drive with some sort of 3.5 adapter plate, you can still put 80mm slim fan? Or perhaps 60mm fan?