I've spent the last couple of days looking at cases trying to find a mid size to work with a SLI setup.
I don't have room to go to a fullsize case without some considerable remodeling of the office/computer room. No place to sit it on the floor and a full size will not fit in the space my Antec 300 case is occupying now.
So question is this, has anybody recently build a new PC and used SLI while fitting everything into a midsize case? I was thinking along the lines of dual GTX460's, since I won't be actually building it till after x-mas I was going to check the price out on some of the GTX5 series cards.
Width and length is not a problem, height is the limiting factor. I have an opening that is exactly 19" tall. Since it will be on a desktop, I'd like to avoid ports on top for ease of use. Filters would be another huge plus, this old house is dusty and I regularly clean the filters in the Antec 300 I have now.
I should add that the wife will be getting my current PC to replace her Dell so I need another case anyways.
I was going to go with a GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD3R and by looking at my old Gigabyte mobo, it sure appears that the second card will practically be sitting on the PSU. I'm worried about cooling issues is all. I haven't been able to pull up a schematic at all, I'm wondering if the card slots might be placed differently on the new board I'm looking at compared to the GA-EP45-UD3R i'm running now. Granted the old board is not SLI, but by eyeballing what slot I think the second card would go in if it was there and by looking at the knockouts in the rear of the case it just seems like it will get mighty tight around that second card and the PSU.
Granted this is only the second system I've built, so if those more knowledgeable say the Antec 300 will work then I'll use it again as I'm happy with the first one I bought.
A few things I have learned since building the first, absolutely will go with a full modular PSU and no matter how bad the wife wants a Dell, she ain't getting one.
Yeah it's important you check what PCI-E slots your card will be using, and if it's possible to run them with a gap in between. Fortunately for you you're doing the right thing and thinking ahead so you've got time to make sure all you're parts are going to work well together. If your height limited, you'll probably want a case that blows front to back as opposed to from front to up and back. Any mobo that lets you put cards in slots 1 and 2 and then 5 and 6 would be good, since most of the mid towers your going to find will only have 7 PCI slots on the case.
Something like the LIAN LI Lancool PC-K7B might work. It's under $100, had decent cable management, is under 19" tall. It has a top mounted PSU though, some people don't like that as much. But it also has a nice front filter.
I'd say you definitely want something with 2 front intakes and a strong back exhaust.
Yeah it's important you check what PCI-E slots your card will be using, and if it's possible to run them with a gap in between.
Yup, Gigabyte calls for slots 1 and 2.
From Gigabytes website: (Note 2) For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16_1 slot; if you are installing two PCI Express graphics cards, it is recommended that you install them in the PCIEX16_1 and PCIEX16_2 slots.
While we are at it, was thinking of a Intel Core i7-950 Bloomfield 3.06GHz for the processor, don't really have my heart set on anything yet, and things may change as I have about three weeks yet to make decisions.
I am ready for such thing,if it's possible to run them with a gap in between. Fortunately for you you're doing the right thing and thinking ahead so you've got time to make sure all you're parts are going to work well together. If your height limited, you'll probably want a case that blows front to back as opposed to from front to up and back.
Just filled it up with fans and its knocked 8C off the GPU heat.
The biggest issue is the space between the pci slots and the size of the GPU cooler, just check before buying.
What mobo are you using? For no other reason than I used a Gigabyte mobo in my first and only build and that one was zero problems when I first powered up and has since been flawless for the last two years, I'd like to stick with Gigabyte, but it does look like two GTX series cards are literally going to be stacked on top of one another which concerns me a little with cooling.
To bad they can't be had in a mirror image of the other. Top card can have the fans on top, bottom card could have fans on bottom and then plenty of room between.
I'm like you but with DFI, this is an old 590SLI board I just setup for Folding, its a bit of a squeeze but with the side fan now attached that blows directly onto the cards they are running at 52C bottom and 57C top under load which is pretty cool.