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How the CoolerMaster CM HAF 932?

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September 5, 2008 9:29:21 PM

i saw it come with 3X23 fans(!)
and i wanted to ask, is they good? got alot CFM?
and this case got filters? or just this net?
thanks
EDIT: who do u think is better?
Armor+ vh6000bws or the CM haf 932?

More about : coolermaster haf 932

September 5, 2008 10:02:36 PM

is it even on sale yet?

looks like a promising descendant of the cm stacker
September 5, 2008 11:04:15 PM

yes it's on sale like 4 stores.
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a c 248 ) Power supply
September 5, 2008 11:48:32 PM

Fry's Electronics started selling them last Saturday at their stores in the USA. I purchased one. I went back on Sunday to purchase a motherboard and the new cases were already sold out.

It's a big full size case and it's one inch wider than a mid-tower case like the Coolermaster Centurion 590. Cable management should be excellent.

The three 230mm fans are huge. There is a 140mm fan mounted on the back. In addition, the case has mounting holes for other fan configurations and watercooling.

According to the owners manual the three 230x30mm fans are rated at 700 RPM and 19dBA. The 140x25mm rear fan is rated at 1200 RPM and 19dBa. The manual does not have the CFM.

The case also has mounting holes for a variety of other fan sizes and watercooling. Lots of freedom of choice with this case.

I don't know about cooling yet. I will be assembling my new computer tomorrow and will post more information after it is built.



PHOTO UPDATE - December 15th - A few photos are now available for viewing at:

http://www.cactushat.com/haf932/index.html

Please bear in mind that the case mod and improvements are not complete. This is a work in progress. Additional photos will be posted as the project moves forward.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 5, 2008 11:51:30 PM

The case does not come with fan filters. It only has metal mesh.
September 6, 2008 9:32:41 AM

Thanks johhney, if u can bring some pictures.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 7, 2008 7:59:35 AM

I am behind schedule. All parts are installed and I should be able to start up the computer tomorrow. I had a problem with the old Thermalright 120, Rev A heatsink. It had an AMD retention bracket for the top side of the motherboard but it didn't come with a metal backplate for the bottom of the motherboard. The Gigabyte motherboard did not have a metal backplate either. Instead, it was made of plastic and had plastic push-pins. In addition the heatsink could only be mounted so that the air flow is from bottom to top instead of front to back. I went back to Fry's to buy a new heatsink.

When I got home I decided to lap the heatsink and cpu. It's easy to do but it does take a lot of time and it is boring work. I stopped after using 600 grit wet sandpaper. That should be okay.

The computer case has two drive cages. The top cage has six bays. Installing an optical drive, card reader, and floppy disk drive was very easy. There is plenty of room. The best part is that it will be very easy to connect the cables. The drive cage is equipped for tools free installation. When I installed the drives I discovered the tools free set-up was not very good. The drives and card reader were loose and could rattle during operation so I secured everything with screws.

The bottom hard drive cage is situated sideways and designed for easy removal and swapping of hard drives. Just take off the side panel and pull out a drive. It had a different tools free design that I didn't care for. I also wondered about the drive cage restricting air flow from the large fan at the bottom front of the case. I wasn't to crazy about the set-up.

I still had three drive bays available in the upper cage and wondered if a Coolermaster 4-in-1 module would fit. Some people might be familiar with it. The module fits in three drive bays. You can fit four hard drives in it and mount a 120mm fan in front to cool the drives. I just happened to have an extra one. It fit perfectly. I wound up mounting a 120mm Scythe S-Flex fan and two hard drives in the module. That left the bottom drive cage empty.

The PSU was an absolute joy to install. Probably the easiest PSU intallation I have ever done. There is nothing in the way which would make installation difficult. The PSU located in the bottom of the case sits on a metal bracket with slots which is more like a little stand for the PSU. The bracket has two pieces. One piece can be lengthened to accomodate extra large PSU's. Beneath the brackets the bottom of the case is perforated to help cool the PSU. Very nice.

Installing the motherboard and heatsink revealed a problem. The motherboard tray has a large square hole that is supposed to make it easy to change heatsinks. The idea is that you don't have to remove the motherboard to make the change. That is correct for motherboards using the square Intel backplates. The rectangular AMD2 backplates are too long for the square hole. You can't access the bottom of an AMD2 rectangular backplate through the hole. I had to install the heatsink first and then install the motherboard.

That's it for tonight. Time to get some sleep. More info tomorrow.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 9, 2008 3:52:27 AM

Here's some more info

Cable Management - It was a challenge but after several tries I was able to hide all of the cables except one. I have a 24 inch round floppy disk drive cable. It was not long enough to fit behind the motherboard tray. If I can find a 30 inch or 36 inch round cable I will be able to hide it. I thought I was going to have a problem with the front panel audio cable because the header on the motherboard was at the back of the board. It took me a while to discover I could run the cable across the inside of the top of the case to one side of the large fan on top and then down the side of the rear exhaust fan. Very nice.

Cooling with the large fans seems to be okay. Idle temperature was 31C which was just one degree above the ambient room temperature. The large fans are not as loud as my Scythe S-Flex fans. I don't know how to describe it or the correct terms to use but the large fans make a very low pitched sound while the Scythe fans make a high pitched sound. It's like the large fans are the bass and the Scythe fans are the treble. The large fans seem quieter. I'm guessing that's because of the lower RPM. I haven't tested the cooling at full load but I am sure it will be okay.
September 9, 2008 3:45:23 PM

wow johnny, you totally hijacked this thread,, do the big fans move air? im assuming yes, but never hurts to ask...
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 10, 2008 12:54:55 AM

eklipz330,

Yes, the three 230mm, 700 RPM fans move quite a bit of air without sounding like a jet engine. What I hear most are two Scythe S-Flex SFF21F, 120mm, 1600 RPM fans. One is attached to a large CPU heatsink and blows air toward the back of the case. The second one replaced the 140mm 1200 RPM fan that sucks out hot air at the back of the case. The two Scythe fans are lined up in a straight line so they move air from the heatsink and out the rear.

In the meantime I have a problem. The new Gigabyte motherboard died a quick death. I took it back to Fry's Electronics. Their technicians could not bring it back to life. I got a full refund. Now I have to see about another mortherboard that can handle an AMD 64x2, 6000 CPU. That's the one rated at 125W. Not all motherboards can handle the higher wattage.

a c 248 ) Power supply
September 11, 2008 12:36:43 AM

The other night I took the motherboard back to Fry's Electronics. Their technicians confirmed the board was dead. I looked at other AM2+ motherboards on display.

I discovered the location of the CPU socket, the heatsink retention bracket, and the backplate varied. Different motherboards had the CPU socket in different locations. The orientation of the bracket and backplate also varied. In most the long side of the bracket and plate were parallell to the front side of the board. In others the long sides were parallel to the top side of board. I guess there is no industry standard for CPU location and orientation.

I didn't look as Intel boards but I guessing it's possible the location of Intel CPU's might also require removal of the motherboard.

It might have been better if Coolermaster had put a removeable or sliding motherboard tray in the case.
September 11, 2008 1:35:38 AM

ouch, sucks to here that...
September 12, 2008 12:30:24 AM

Ok, the case has record breaking cooling potential, looks great, has a dual PSU design, and only costs $160, that's more than enougn without a removable motherboard tray. I have a removable motherboard tray on my Silverstone TJ07 and I do not even use it, I think they are overrated.
September 12, 2008 1:18:57 AM

i don't know, i like pulling it out and working on my desk without hunching over you know... but blood, you may be right about the over rated... think i should sell my stacker and get that? i should have more than enough... and im thinking about getting a watercoolign system in the future, will save me time and trouble
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 12, 2008 1:30:05 AM

The_Blood_Raven,

Now that I think about it I can't remember a situation where I replaced a heatsink or CPU. I can't recall a heatsink or cpu ever going bad either. In my situation I certainly don't need a removeable tray.

In the meantime, I ordered a replacement motherboard from Newegg. It's retention bracket and metal backplate with screws are oriented so that I will be able to install the old Thermalright 120 Rev A heatsink and have front to back air flow.
September 12, 2008 1:48:15 AM

wow nice case wish i could afford that.
=[
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 13, 2008 1:57:40 AM

bohman,

What kind of mods are you thinking of doing?

A little more about cable management:

If you have a SATA optical drive and you mount it in the upper drive cage, then you will need a longer SATA cable if you want to hide the cable. If the SATA headers on the motherboard are located at the bottom front of the board the standard 18 inch cables are a little bit short. The 24 inch SATA cables are just about right and allow some flexibility. I ordered a couple that I found on line.

If you still use a floppy disk drive and you want to hide the cable you will probably need a longer cable if the floppy header on the motherboard is located at the bottom center of the board. A 30 inch cable should be okay but I haven't been able to find one on line. I did find 36 inch round cable.

September 13, 2008 5:28:24 PM

JohnnyLucky said:
bohman,

What kind of mods are you thinking of doing?


i plan on several mods.

the end result will be a battlestar galactica cylon machine.

i have been looking for an all-steel case or mostly steel case for weeks, and i am glad that CM released this. i need steel because i am planning on chrome plating as much as possible (i work in a steel plant with a chroming facility :)  ). i will then buff the chrome to a mirror finish. our facility's electro-plating is too strong for aluminum, it wouldn't make it out alive.

i plan to completely redo the side panel. i will cut out most of it, make it a much larger window, probably install a different fan (which i havn't decided on yet). i do not like the mesh around the fan.

i am going to rework the front bezel, probably scrapping it entirely and fabricating a steel one, that will also be chromed. the bottom of the bezel will be fashioned so the vents represent a cylon's mouth-area.

i will be installing a cylon eye that will occupy the top drive bay, with a dial to control scan speed.

i will need to get my hands on the case and review everything. i will make a work-log, and will drop a link.

obviously, i need a bunch of time to do this, so i wanted to jump in asap.


a c 248 ) Power supply
September 14, 2008 1:41:00 AM

bohman,

oooooooooooh! Cylons! Awesome! I used to watch the TV series back in the 70's!

The front bezel is a combination of plastic and metal mesh. At the bottom front there is a black plastic horizontal grill that can be pulled off. The rest of the bezel remains attached to the frame. I can't remember with certainty but it's possble the the plastic pieces on the left and right front are held in place with rivets. I'll check tomorrow and post the info. There is small metal mesh screwed to the back of the plastic grill. There is some space between the bezel's grill/mesh and the frame. Oddly the frame has larger metal mesh. The 230mm fan is attached to the mesh. I am going to remove the small mesh attached to the grill and I am tempted to cut a hole in the large mesh in the frame to increase air flow.

The rear exhaust also has metal mesh. The last couple builds I have been cutting out the mesh to increase increase air flow out the back.

With this case I won't be cutting a blow hole in the top of the case as it already has a 230mm fan and more metal mesh.

My new mobo and SATA cables will be delivered in a few days. Tomorrow I'm going to continue lapping the CPU and heatsink. Last week I only lapped down to 600 grit. I'll probably take it down to 1000 grit. I may go to Fry's Electronics and take a good look at that shiny chrome-like flexible plastic tube I saw.
September 14, 2008 10:52:42 PM

i am now the proud owner of a CM HAF 932.

as people have said, it is a monster. gigantic.

now for the disassemble and modding.....
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 15, 2008 12:25:30 AM

bohman,

Congratulations! You'll like it. Do you have it already or did you have to order it?

I checked the front bezel of mine. As I stated previously there are several pieces. The front bottom horizontal grill simply pops out. The left and right side pieces that span the entire height are screwed in. No problem removing them. The rivets I saw attach the top and bottom of the case to the frame.

I cut out the mesh covering the exhaust fan on the rear panel. I used a pair of aviation shears to get the job done. It was very easy to cut the mesh. Then I installed soft rubber molding around the edge of the hole. This was the first time I didn't have to do any nibbling or filing. Looks pretty good and the fan now has an unrestricted exhaust vent. Luckily I don't have to worry about little finger or critters so I won't bother with a fan guard.

I also removed the lower drive cage as I don't have any use for it. Some drive cages are attached with tabs and slots, others are attached with screws, and some are attached with rivets. This one is attached with rivets. I used a wire cutter to cut the little nubs sticking into the case. Once they are cut the rivets come apart very easily. If I ever reach the point where I want to install more drives I have a Coolermaster 4-in-1 module I can install in the bottom of the case. Just need to drill a couple of small holes and screw it down. Nothing to it.

I went to Fry's this morning to see about the silver/chrome split flexible tubing. They only had one package left and it was a small diameter. I wrote down the information on the package. I wound up ordering a couple of packages on line. I've got it pretty much worked out in my mind. With a little luck there won't be any visible cables and the chrome tubing will be a nice touch.

Time to lap the cpu and heatsink. I'm going to sit in the dining room facing the television in the living room. If there's a good football game tonight maybe lapping won't be so boring.



September 15, 2008 1:06:41 AM

johnnylucky,

my local microcenter had 5 of them in stock for 139.99. funny story, because they didnt even know they had them! i went up to the sales guy, he looked at the cases on display and said 'no, we dont have it'. i asked him to check his system, and voila, there are 5 in the warehouse.

so the bottom plastic just pops off? i didnt want to force it. just to make sure, are you taking about the plastic in front of the front fan? it seems like it should come off, but i didnt want to break it (yet).

but i like the case a lot, so much room for anything i want to do or install.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 15, 2008 1:44:40 AM

Yes, the black horizontal plastic grill with the Coolermaster logo that is located at the bottom front of the case, in front of the big 230mm fan, pops right out just like bezels some of the other Coolermaster cases. Insert a couple of fingers under the bottom of the grill and pull. It will pop right out.

BTW - the big 230mm has red led's. Between the horizontal grill, the small mesh screwed to the grill. and the large mesh that the fan is attached to the red glow is muted. On the other hand the power led and the hard disk led at the top front are blue.
September 15, 2008 10:46:32 AM

eklipz330 said:
i don't know, i like pulling it out and working on my desk without hunching over you know... but blood, you may be right about the over rated... think i should sell my stacker and get that? i should have more than enough... and im thinking about getting a watercoolign system in the future, will save me time and trouble


The CM 932 is a good case with what looks like some great water cooling potential. That said I would have to say that you should stick with your stacker for now and if you absolutely know you will be doing water cooling then consider another case, until then be happy with your stacker. Sorry for a late answer been kind of busy.
September 15, 2008 10:16:48 PM

I'm looking to build a new system next month and was going to use the Antec 1200 and now leaning towards this . Just wondering how the 2 stack up .
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 16, 2008 12:41:08 AM

Snakeyez67,

Originally I went to Fry's Electronics to purchase an Antec 1200 case. I had a good look at a 1200 on display as well as a large number of other cases. Then I saw the Coolermaster 932 HAF case. In my mind it had a lot of excellent potential for future expansion and flexibility. I liked it so much I bought one.

Time for Monday Night Football - Eagles vs Cowboys!
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 17, 2008 12:07:26 AM

bohman,

Soooooo....other than it's large, what do you think about your new case? Is it going to be okay for your Cylon case mod?

The 24 inch Sata cables and the 36 inch round floppy cable arrived. Looks to be just about right for my plans. The floppy cable was very cool. I didn't know the round cable could be so thin. The cable is just a little thicker than a pen or pencil. It has silver colored braid encased in clear plastic. Very cool. I think people with standard width cases could easily hide it between the motherboard tray and the side panel. In fact, I'm sure of it. The only thing better would have been a 30 inch cable but I didn't find any on line.

The chrome/silver split flexible tubing will arrive tomorrow.

I had a little bad luck with the motherboard. There was a server error during the order process and the order was never completed. I checked online this morning and discovered the order was still waiting to be processed. I telephoned the retailer which led to the discovery of the problem. I decided to cancel the order and start over. GEEZ!
September 17, 2008 4:26:49 PM

JohnnyLucky,

the case is what i wanted, save the plastic. but plastic SOMEWHERE on the case (especially the bezel) is pretty much unavoidable these days (without breaking the bank).

i wanted: a large case (true full tower, and then some), high air flow, possible water cooling, all steel, under $150 USD, front/top mounted output panel with plenty of USB, firewire, esata, bottom mounted PSU, cable management, at least 5 5.25 inch bays, at least 4 HDD racks.

it scores very well on most of those.

i would have liked 6 USBs on the output panel, but 4 is good.

that this allows two PSUs is a bonus. not that i'll put in two, but it is nice to have the ability. probably could save some money by putting in two lesser PSUs than one big one.

on the high air flow, it should shine - i like that it has a few large fans instead of a lot of smaller ones, that will help cut down on the noise while still having high CFM.

it is plenty large enough for the biggest video cards, and the tallest cpu coolers, with room to spare and good air-flow. these were very big deciding factors for me, whereas i am making an air-cooled gaming rig.

price of 139.99 was very solid.

the steel construction will let me do my chrome mod, once i strip off the paint. i also like steel for its strength, not going to do any lan parties with this, so weight was not a concern.

i did not care for a removeable mobo tray. i am a mechanical engineer, and i appreciate strentgh/stability.

the six 5.25'' bays is actually the perfect amount, allowing me to install my cylon eye mod, two opticals, a floppy + media reader, and a fan/temp monitor/control panel. the open one can be used later if i want a dedicated sound card with I/O panel.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 18, 2008 2:37:07 AM

bohman,

You're right, the case does score very well but what in the world would you do with 6 USB ports on the front panel? I'm just the opposite. All I really need up front is one Firewire port for a proprietary card reader.

The chrome/silver split flexible plastic tubing I ordered from Fry's arrived today. From a distance it really looks like chrome. The tubing was coiled inside a plastic bag. When I opened one of the bags the tubing stayed coiled. I thought all I had to do was bend the tubing to the shape I wanted. It didn't work very well. I need to figure out a way to straighten the tubing. Cutting should be easy. I think I can cut it with a simple hacksaw blade.

Buying a motherboard has turned into a royal pain in the butt. This past year and a half I have had some very bad luck with the newer Gigabyte boards. Generally web sites that have motherboard reviews tend to publish favorable reviews. However, when I go to have a dozen sites and read user comments it seems like an unusually large percentage of users receive defective or dead motherboards. Last night I decided to check out ASUS and MSI motherboards. I made a list of three boards from each company. I stopped in at Fry's on the way home from work. With list in hand I checked their boards. They didn't have any on my list. I'll do a little more research tonight and probably purchase from Newegg.
September 18, 2008 12:07:11 PM

JohnnyLucky,

i plan to use this as my gaming machine (i do not own a console). so i want the ability to hook up as many controllers and joysticks as possible. my buddies and i will spend many hours on street fighter 4, oh yeah!

i also want the ability to plug in a rock-band setup if that ever comes to the PC, which is stupid that it hasnt already.

as for your tubing, the only thing i can think of is hanging it with a weight at the bottom and applying some heat to the tube (powerful hair dryer) when it is stretched out.

mobo - seems to be a crap-shoot even with the more reputable manufacturers. shopping online seems the best way to go (the egg). i browsed the mobos at microcenter when i got my 932 and they only had older editions and chipsets.

make sure to post some pics when your rig is done.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 19, 2008 1:27:16 AM

OK! Now I uderstand why you want so manyUSB ports. I never would have thought of gaming because I am not a gamer anymore. I'm an old fart who is into digital imaging. Bought my first computer in 1984. First game I played was a text only game called Zork. There were no graphics. Well....that's not exactly right. Based on text displayed on the screen you tried to draw a dungeon maze on a large sheet of paper. I was never able to draw them accurately. We had computer software shops back then and you could buy a magazine with hints, tips, and tricks. The magazine would also have a drawing of the maze. That same year some new fangled thing called EGA was introduced. It could display 16 colors on screen. I can't remember the first graphical game I played. I am growing old disgracefully and I forget things.

I made my decision about a new motherboard. I purchased an ASUS M3A79-T Deluxe from Newegg. The motherboard has a lot more features than I need right now. I was thinking about future upgrades when I made the decision. I liked the layout of the board too. Virtually all of the headers are around the edges of the board. Cable management will be easy. The heatsinks are interesting. The northbridge, southbridge, and mosfett heatsinks are all connected with copper tubes. I'm hoping I'll be able to remove it easily and apply new TIM.

The chrome/silver split flexible tubing will not be a problem. I played with one of the tubes for a while. I just kept bending the tube in the opposite direction of the existing bend. The tube almost straightened out. I just have to play with it some more.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 19, 2008 12:02:50 PM

I'm up early today. Received an email from Newegg. New motherboard is already here in Phoenix. It will be delivered later today. I'll have to stop by Fry's on the way home from work and buy an extension for the small ATX power cable that connects to the motherboard. The board has a 4 pin header in a 2x2 configuration. I don't have a spare one in my parts box.

So far I'v managed to use spare parts I had. Started out just buying the case and a motherboard. Due to the large size of the case and location of headers on the motherboard I also had to buy three longer SATA data cables, a longer floppy cable, and now an ATX power cable extension. The flex tubing is optional. Not too bad.
September 19, 2008 1:54:10 PM

JohnnyLucky,

yeah, i played all those games growing up. Zork and Wizardry on my old IBM. Moria later on. drawing the dungeons on graph paper was half the fun. great stuff. so much went on in your head. first graphical game i played may have been "where in the world is carmen sandiego?".

nice mobo, good layout for sure. although i plan on going with a E8600 or Q9550 intel.

good luck w/your build. make sure to post pictures when it's all done.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 20, 2008 2:38:26 AM

bohman,

The Asus motherboard arrived today. It's a good looking board. It has a heavy duty metal backplate. Should be excellent for a large heatsink. The heatsinks for the northbridge, southbridge, and moffsets are interesting. They are secured with small but very sturdy plastic pushpins. I don't know if it is my imagination but it seemed as if those small pins were more sturdy and held the pieces in place better than the larger pins on most retention brackets. Must be the tension created by the small springs on the pins. The ASUS cpu retention bracket, motherboard, and metal backplate are secured with metal screws. I'm wondering if the screws and backplate will work with the retention bracket and heatsink I have. I'll find out tomorrow.

I noticed several things about the board. It is a full size ATX board and there are mounting holes for 9 standoffs and screws instead of the typical 6 or 7 standoffs. There is only one PS2 port on the back panel for either a keyboard or a mouse. Luckily I have an optical mouse that uses a USB port. The small ATX power header at the top rear of the board is actually an 8 pin header in a 2x4 configuration. Four of the pins are covered with a black plastic cover. I hope it is explained in the manual.

On the way home from work I stopped by Fry's. I wanted to buy an extension cable for the small ATX power cable. The store did not have the item. I'll have to try and find one on line so I can hide the cable behind the motherboard tray.

When I'm finished I'll post a few photos on a web site I have.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 20, 2008 3:08:18 PM

bohman,

Slow start this morning. I read the ASUS manual last night. According the photos and text in the manual the small ATX power header at the top left of the board is supposed to be used with a standard 8-pin ATX power cable. There was no explanation why the header has a black plastic cover on 4 of the pins.

The manual is pretty good but there are a lot of items, especially in the BIOS section that need a more detailed explanation in plain English. Unfamiliar terms without adequate explanation will confuse and frustrate some people.

In the meantime, I am going to make a custom Windows XP installation disc using NLite. The program will allow me to pick and choose what I want to install. It's also capable of integrating SATA drivers for a variety of southbridge chipsets. In my case I only need the drivers for the SB750 chipset. No point in letting Windows install drivers for a lot of other chipsets that I don't need or want. The program will also incorporate addons like Speedfan and other cool stuff. There's a list with links to well over 100 useful programs and utilities. A very cool one is the Atomic Clock Sync utility. Once a day it gets the official U.S. Atomic Clock time and makes sure the onboard clock is correct - VERY COOL!

Here's the link:

http://icrontic.com/articles/slipstream_windows_xp
September 20, 2008 3:33:02 PM

me and my brother played Zork for all kinds of hours on a commodore. I cant remember if it was the 64 or the one before.. we had both......we also gave Moria a crack....
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 20, 2008 8:29:49 PM

xringx,

I remember a Commodore Pet. I wound up buying a genuine IBM PC.

8 pin ATX power cable - I stopped in at the other Fry's store on the other side of the valley. They didn't have one either. I found several sites on line that had the cable. Prices ranged from $2.99 to $9.99 for what appeared to be the same identical extension cable. One site had a braided version of the cable and another site offered to add the braid and heat shrink. The shipping charges will probably be more than the price of the cable.

Custom Windows Installation - I am just about ready to start NLite and begin the process. I just have to go back and read the section about drivers to make sure I didn't miss anything.

Time for an afternoon siesta.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 21, 2008 2:25:08 PM

I managed to make a custom Windows XP Pro installation disc with Service Pack 3, Internet Explorer 7, the SATA/Raid drivers, and several utilities that are already integrated into XP. NLite let me remove lots of XP stuff that I did not need or want like Outlook Express, Messenger, and Telephony support. NLite is set up so you can add the MS Product Key and several other boot-up items. In theory I should be able to start the install process and have everything done automatically. VERY KOOL!

Making the disc took longer than I expected. The first time you use NLite a lot of time will be spent trying to understand Windows items and deciding whether or not to include or remove them. There's always a possibility you might remove a critical item necessary for Windows operation. Luckily NLite uses red text with a brief explanation for most critical items. Sometimes there are explanations indicating that the item can safely be removed. It's the unfamiliar optional items that will slow you down. Plan on taking about two hours to make the installation disc. There must be hundreds of choices to make.

I don't know what progress I'll make today assembling the computer. I have the NFL football package on DirecTV. Lots of games to watch. The other thing that might slow me down is I have been thinking about painting the interior of the pc case flat black. It might look good with all the shiny copper on the motheboard and the chrome/silver split flex tubing. That would definitely cause a delay.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 22, 2008 4:20:02 AM

Not much progress today due to televised football games.

I did manage to attache the tower style heatsink with fan to the motherboard. The first thing I did was check to see if any of the motherboard components would be in the way of the large heatsink. I had to install one stick of memory before installing the heatsink. The memory module is located almost under the outer edge of the heatsink fan. I applied ArticSilver Ceramique following the directions at the manufacturer's web site. The manufacturer provides different directions and photos for different types of cpu's. Despite the large size of the heatsink and the awkwardness of having to align the retention bracket and metal back plate, it was an easy installation.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 22, 2008 11:50:22 PM

bohman,

Thanks for posting the link to the CM forum in another thread here at THG. I managed to find the specifications for the stock cooling fans:

Front: 230 x 30 mm red LED fan x 1, 700 rpm, 19 dBa (75 CFM)
Side: 230 x 30 mm standard fan x 1, 700 rpm, 19 dBa (support 120 x 25 fan x 4)(75 CFM)
Top: 230 x 30 mm standard fan x 1, 700 rpm, 19 dBa (support 120 mm fan x 3 or 120 mm x 1 + 230 x 30 mm x 1)(75CFM)
Rear: 140 x 25 mm standard fan x 1, 1200 rpm, 17 dBa (support 120 mm fan x 1)(57 CFM)

Did you ever get an answer about the type of steel used to make the case? I don't know diddly squat about chrome plating steel. However, when I saw the word chromate I associated it with zinc chromate primer used to prime galvanized steel.

In the meantime, the 8 pin ATX extension cable should arive in two or three days. I am seriously considering painting the interior of the case flat black. Driving home from work today a few more ideas for the interior popped into my head. I'll have to check out Radio Shack and Fry's to see if they have something I could use. I keep thinking that black plastic horizontal grill at the front bottom of the case would look very cool in either chrome or copper. What do you think?
September 23, 2008 12:56:33 AM

johnnylucky,

nice board you got there, it would be fun to fill up with 4850's. i read that asus was covering some pins on the power connectors in order to not confuse people, it seems it may have the opposite effect. i am looking at a similar asus board for intel cpu's, a p45 chipset. i plan to get a nice, fast duo chip and pair it with a 4870 or 260.

but my build date isnt until december, so i can take my time and research. i will be making my purchases on black friday, most likely.

so in the meantime i can work on my case mod. i am taking apart the case right now, and hope to have it at the chroming facility later this week. i am confident that i can chrome it, regardless of current coating (i can take off anything with our sulphuric acid bath). i am also thinking about making the frame of the case flat black, but i would be using our parko coating oven to do it. it doesnt allow stainless steel, however, and i think that is waht the frame is, so i may be out of luck, which is unfortunate.

i found a bunch of circuit designs for the cylon eye scanner, and will be getting that running in the meantime as well.

i also have the same issue as you with the front grill. since the rest of my case will be crome, the black plastic bezel will stick out. so i thought about spray painting it chrome. if you do, please post photos. the copper is very intriguing. i thnk that would be very unique and look good.

oh, and thanks for that nlite tip, i will look into it.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 23, 2008 6:55:50 PM

bohman,

Not much progress yesterday evening due to Monday Night Football.

I did manage to remove the cpu heatsink and check the Ceramique. The circular pattern looked just like the photos at the manufacturer's web site. Right on the money. Thinking about giving that IC Diamond 7 Carat a try just to see what happens. Some of the review sites seem to indicate it does a better job than the Ceramique.

I also removed the nb/sb/mosfett heatsink combo from the motherboard. Nothing to it. Looks like each heatsink had a thick thermal pad. Each pad came off in one piece. Contact with the mosfetts was uneven. I'm guessing pressure was uneven. I'm toying with the idea of purchasing individual copper heatsinks.

I'll keep you posted on painting the grill. The problem is that painting plastic to make it look like chrome or copper will never look as good as the real thing.
September 23, 2008 7:01:32 PM

JL,

agreed on the bezel, it will not look like the real thing, but what ya gonna do? it's plastic.

i havn't tried the diamond either, i thought about picking some up and giving it a shot.

as for the copper heatsinks, sounds like a capital idea. i am going to do the same thing. i figure i am going to (hopefully) do this build just once, so might as well do it right!

the MNF game sucked! actually, a lot of the games were quite boring this weekend. they all can't be winners.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 23, 2008 7:49:36 PM

bohman,

What "might" help is several layers of clear coat over the copper. I'll give it a shot. Local hobby shops should have the paint.

Lunch time is over. I'll post this evening
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 24, 2008 1:38:55 AM

bohman,

What type of copper heatsinks for northbridge and southbridge chips? Active with fan or passive?. The ThermalTake Extreme Sprit II looks good as does the Enzotech One Piece Forged Copper:

http://www.coolerguys.com/chipsetcooling.html

Have you already taken you case apart? How easy or hard was it to remove that front top panel with all those USB and other ports?
September 24, 2008 5:03:19 PM

JohnnyLucky,

i took the case apart yesterday. it wasn't hard at all. the top panel with the USB, firewire, and esata port just slid right off when you remove the screws up there. i think i am going to remount it differently, with the ports facing vertical. that will give the top of the case a flat surface. i will remount the power button where the fill-port is for H20 cooling. will drill a hole for reset button.

the front bezel came right off too, like you said, which was nice. it seems that all the screens can easily be removed for chroming, which is nice. it seems that i can recreate the plastic parts withs some simple sheet metal work.

i am going to drill out the rivets today and get it all into sectional panels. then bring the panels in to work for paint acid stripping or bake-off. i will probably have to take them home again after stripping/bake to buff/lap them nice and smooth before getting the chrome, which likes a smooth surface for good application. that may take a bit of time, luckily, i have it.

as for cooling, i was planning on an active cooler like the TT (i like led :)  ) for the NB, and a nice copper passive one for the SB. the SB doesnt run as hot, and can take more heat.

a c 248 ) Power supply
September 24, 2008 9:19:43 PM

bohman,

Thanks for the info about that top front panel.

I've got less than hour before I get off work. I'm going to stop by Fry's on the way home. The last time I was there they still had a couple of those Thermaltake Extreme Spirit II northbridge heatsinks. The southbridge is the exact same size on my ASUS board. With a little luck I can also install one of those heatsinks on the southbridge. From reading other threads and user comments I'm pretty sure the heatsinks will fit okay.

The mosfet heatsink is a different matter. The Thermalright mosfet heatsinks will not fit the motherboard. The mounting holes are not the same. A great big thank you to ThermalRight for providing compatibilty charts on their web site. I think I found a different heatsink over at Sidewinder Computers that has the mounting holes in the right position. I just have to measure the existing heatsink to find out which model I need.
a c 248 ) Power supply
September 25, 2008 12:01:08 PM

b,

I stopped by Fry's on the way home from work. They only had one ThermalTake Extreme Spirit II northbridge heatsink with fan which turned out to be a good thing. When I got home I discovered the heatsink was too large for the northbridge chip. The chip is located just below the cpu and just above primary PCI express x16 slot #1. Not enough room. I checked the motherboard manual and discovered I could move the video card down to PCI express x16 slot #3 which would move the video card out of the way. I still didn't have enough room due to the large cpu heatsink. The Tt heatsink is okay for the southbridge chip.

I took some measurements and determined there was sufficient room for the Enzotech 40mmx40mm one piece forged copper heatsink. I can attach a 40mm fan to the top or a 25mm fan to the side of the heatsink.

I did not have any luck finding an appropriate mosfet heatsink. Turns out the existing one was longer than any available online. I may have to use the existing one.
!