GPU Thin Mini-ITX with discrete graphics card

Phuncz

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Do I read that correctly, is that 4-pin "ATX" connector either an input or an output (when using DC jack) ? That's interesting, although not of much use since you'll not find many GPUs that only use 100W (if using 45W CPU). But for storage, that might be very interesting.
 

Therandomness

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Nov 9, 2016
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Do I read that correctly, is that 4-pin "ATX" connector either an input or an output (when using DC jack) ? That's interesting, although not of much use since you'll not find many GPUs that only use 100W (if using 45W CPU). But for storage, that might be very interesting.
Well, the RX 480 (later ones) uses around 130W when stock, the 470, less so. The 1050 Ti should also use less than 100W.
 

iFreilicht

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That's interesting, although not of much use since you'll not find many GPUs that only use 100W (if using 45W CPU). But for storage, that might be very interesting.

Well at the very least it allows you to power a powered riser directly. So for a 1050Ti you don't need additional DC/DC converters or a separate external DC input, you can just use the one on the board.
 

Sicaris

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Dec 6, 2016
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An interesting possibility here is that you could power a GPU directly from a 12 V AC-DC converter like those made by meanwell and then run another wire to the 4 pin on the motherboard removing the need for a DC-ATX entirely.
 
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aquelito

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Thin Mini-ITX with discrete GPU tested and approved !!

Thanks to @QinX, who very nicely accepted to make me a 4X to 16X powered riser (designed for the H2o Micro), I am now officially 24 Pin cable - free !

Enclosed some pictures of my setup :


Hardware used :

- i5 6400T
- Asrock H110TM-ITX
- MSI GTX 750 Ti LP / Inno3D GTX 1060 6G compact
- HDPLEX 250W (fed by the onboard 2Pin connector)
- HP 240W 19V adapter

Right now, the HDPLEX 250W is simply jammed.
@QinX nicely included a Mosfet circuit of his own conception (please refer to previous pages) to sync the HDPLEX with the motherboard.
However I may have damaged it while fitting into a Molex housing. It works but not as intended !
More to follow on the sync subject.

Anyway, I tested both GPU configurations (with and without a 6 Pin connector) and it works beautifully, thanks to @QinX.
A flexible Amerirack riser chained with the powered riser did not cause any issue (the GTX 1060 is cooled by a crossflow fan I wanted to test, not great :/).

Regarding the layout, the GPU being folded over the CPU, I needed to offset the CPU cooler.

This was possible thanks to an Amec Thermasol flat coolpipe, which is an elegant, cheap and easy-to-use alternative to copper heatpipes.
This product pretty much gave me the idea to go Thin Mini-ITX.

The mounting bracket is of course not definitive, it was quickly made to insure a good contact between the pipe and the CPU.
The spring-loaded screws are too long and I can only fit a LP GPU atm.
With the right screws, every GPU will fit.

Regarding the coolpipe efficiency, with a Zalman FC-ZV9 at 5V (same as VF900 with a faster fan), the i5 6400T stabilizes at 65° after 40 min of Prime95, case closed (Streacom F7C with a single 92mm intake fan).
FYI, those pipes need to be placed vertically to help the condensated liquid to go back to the heat source.



Speaking of the case, enclosed pictures shows the setup in my current Streacom F7C, which is not really optimized for gaming...
I plan to move to a smaller and thermally more optimized Antec ISK 110 (3.7L vs 6L).

Enclosed a moke up of the whole idea : the i5 6400T is to be passively cooled, thanks to a flat coolpipe, by the pack panel, made of a 200x200x15mm aluminium heatsink.

 
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Ceros_X

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Very nice! I don't think I've seen any other coolpipe builds. Certainly seems to let you be more flexible with layout.

Can you do some testing (CPU cooler) vs CPU cooler on coolpipe to see what sort of cooling hit you take?

Also I'm jealous you got an @QinX H20 riser!! @QinX, do you ever plan on bringing those to market? They seem pretty essential for good thin itx builds.
 
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aquelito

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I'll try to compare with a NH-L9i :)

FYI, I tested the same setup with my GTX 750 Ti : exactly the same temperatures as the original dual 50mm fan horrible cooler.



In the background you can see the 200 mm heatsink, cooling my former i3 6100. Temps were OK in non-demanding games, not good under Prime95. Case open.

But it was really a quick job, contact was not perfect.
I am pretty confident they work very well.

 

QinX

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@Ceros_X I'm not sure there is a real market for this type of riser, it's not a standard height like a 0.5U or 1U riser so it doesn't work with existing cases. a regular IO shield and the Thin ITX IO shield also collide with the riser, so it isn't very user friendly.
And you are extremely limited in CPU Cooling options, just look at what @aquelito and I had to do with our builds :).

If you're interested I'm happy to sell you one and I'm even more interested in knowing what kind of project could use this type of riser.
 

Ceros_X

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@Ceros_X I'm not sure there is a real market for this type of riser, it's not a standard height like a 0.5U or 1U riser so it doesn't work with existing cases. a regular IO shield and the Thin ITX IO shield also collide with the riser, so it isn't very user friendly.
And you are extremely limited in CPU Cooling options, just look at what @aquelito and I had to do with our builds :).

If you're interested I'm happy to sell you one and I'm even more interested in knowing what kind of project could use this type of riser.

I think a riser that faced to the right as opposed to back over the CPU would be ideal (or even just a straight up unangled riser that you could feed a flexible sintech type riser into for maximum flexibility). It isn't the direction so much as cutting off power from the mobo and bringing in external power that is key.

There have been several builds (and even more interest in doing a build) but I think multi daisy chained risers and 4-16x adapters is a big turn off. I'd probably be looking at something laid out like the S4 Mini but use a Flex riser to orient the gpu fan up, the same direction the CPU cooler is facing. Stick with a 1050Ti LP or a 460 single slot.

TBH I just want a riser because they don't exist in the wild and they open up the possibilities!
 
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Ceros_X

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I'll try to compare with a NH-L9i :)

FYI, I tested the same setup with my GTX 750 Ti : exactly the same temperatures as the original dual 50mm fan horrible cooler.



In the background you can see the 200 mm heatsink, cooling my former i3 6100. Temps were OK in non-demanding games, not good under Prime95. Case open.

But it was really a quick job, contact was not perfect.
I am pretty confident they work very well.

The ah, these pics make it much more clear. Very interesting project. Where did you score the giant heatsink?
 

CC Ricers

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Hey @aquelito nice to see you have a card working without the 24-pin connector. I'm trying to follow the trail of wires to see what are the outward connections from your HD-PLEX unit. Is it possible to provide a simple schematic diagram?

From what I see in the pictures, though, you're using the 24-pin connector of the HD-PLEX to power up a 6-pin connector which I believe is part of the custom riser that @QinX sent you. EDIT: On second thought it looks like a jumper plug. I'm trying to trace the path of the wires that lead from the 19v connector on the motherboard.
 
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aquelito

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Feb 16, 2016
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The ah, these pics make it much more clear. Very interesting project. Where did you score the giant heatsink?

RS-Online ! 29€ delivered :)

Hey @aquelito nice to see you have a card working without the 24-pin connector. I'm trying to follow the trail of wires to see what are the outward connections from your HD-PLEX unit. Is it possible to provide a simple schematic diagram?

From what I see in the pictures, though, you're using the 24-pin connector of the HD-PLEX to power up a 6-pin connector which I believe is part of the custom riser that @QinX sent you. EDIT: On second thought it looks like a jumper plug. I'm trying to trace the path of the wires that lead from the 19v connector on the motherboard.

No problem !
Power brick -> On-board 7.4mm barrel connector -> 2 Pin on-board connector used as passthrough -> HDPLEX 4 Pin DC-IN -> 4 Pin molex -> Riser

The 6 Pin connector is housing both PSU_ON and GND cables, then simply pushed into the HDPLEX 24 Pin connector.
 

CC Ricers

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Oh, the 2-pin connector is used as a pass-through from the barrel connector? I've read from another source that you couldn't use the board with both connectors in use, but I guess they were wrong.
 

aquelito

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Works very well indeed !
Gigabyte manual states it clearly ; Asrock did not but it works :)

I remembered Qinx already used that option in his H2o micro build.
 

aquelito

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Well at the very least it allows you to power a powered riser directly. So for a 1050Ti you don't need additional DC/DC converters or a separate external DC input, you can just use the one on the board.

To follow up on the GA-H110TN motherboard :

since its on-board DC IN connector seems to only accept 5.5 x 2.5 AC adapters, you could use this modded Dell DA-2 to power any GPU up to GTX 1060 / 970 :



Using the 4-Pin ATX connector as passthrough, you would just need to make a 4-Pin to 6-Pin + Molex cable harness.

Does it seem right to you ?
 
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iFreilicht

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Does it seem right to you ?

No. As I said previously, it looks like the internal 12V input/ouput is AFTER the initial DC regulator that converts the 19V-12V range to a solid 12V. So trying to power a big GPU from that might kill that regulator. This sort of thing worked with older boards because the internal and external sockets were connected in parallel directly.

To clarify, what I assume the internal structure looks like is this: [External DC-Jack]->[19-12V to 12V regulator]->[Internal 12V socket]->[Mainboard electronics]

If you want to be sure, you have to ask gigabyte what the maximum output on that internal socket is. But as they only describe it as an input in the manual, I doubt that they want you to use it as an output in the first place
 

aquelito

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OK ; because the DC connector accepts a wide range voltage and the 4-Pin connector only 12V, you assume both connectors are not simply "linked" as on the Asrock motherboard ?

From manual :

DC Power Jack

This port supports 12V/19V/24V power adapter of up to 150w. Note: The DC power jack cannot be used with the 4-pin ATX 12V power connector simultaneously as a source of power input.

TX_12V (2x2 12V Power Connector)

This connector can be used to input power when the DC power jack on the rear panel is not connected. However, if the DC power jack is connected, this connector can only be used to output power.

The power output limit would be 150W ?


In the case you cannot rely on the internal 12V power connector to output enough power, you can still use a DELL brick with that particular cable harness.
Less elegant solution and you loose the GPU sync but you have a DC-board-free system.

Anyway the build I have in mind would only feature a 750 Ti or 1050.
 
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iFreilicht

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In the case you cannot rely on the internal 12V power connector to output enough power, you can still use a DELL brick with that particular cable harness.

Jup that should work.

The power output limit would be 150W ?

It sounds like that. But that would be 150W total, so you have to subtract whatever your CPU and RAM and drives pull. But yeah, a 1050 should work without a problem.
 

aquelito

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I stumbled on this article and it made me think of the 25W PCIe slot issue :

http://cryptomining-blog.com/3757-h...-target-limit-on-geforce-gtx-970-and-gtx-980/



Following their BIOS mod guide, do you think you could lower the PCI-E slot power value to 25W and balance the extra power onto the PCI-E 1 value ?
If such a mod could work, you wouldn't need a powered riser, provided you have GPU with a PEG connector.

I happen to have a PEG-equiped 750 Ti to test such a setup.
 
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