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Abnormal build questions

Last response: in Systems
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October 30, 2010 10:44:07 PM

Hello Toms Hardware, long time reader. first time poster, terrible cliche calling in!

ok for those with adhd I have put a summary of my questions here at the top:

1. what can I use to stop EMI escaping from my MDF case?
2. if I use the fixing plate that comes with my MB inside my MDF case will i escape electrocution?
3. in light of my case what HS would you recommend for my CPU?

components:
sapphire ati radeon HD 5870 vapor-x 1024mb pci-e
intel core i7 930 2.8ghz (bloomfield)
gigabyte ga-x58a-ud3r intel x 58 (socket 1366)
CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3X2) DDR3 12800C9 1600mhz
corsair hx 750w atx modular sli compliant psu
asus xonar d2x pci-e soundcard
1tb HDD sata 6gb/s 64mb cache
intel x25-v value 40gb SSHD
samsung sh-b083l (blueray/dvd) drive
compro dual tv card
2 x noctua 120mm case fans

specs, use and reasoning
pc will be located in the front room attached to my TV and one flat screen monitor. It will be used for media and gaming.
My entire media collection is electronically stored so i am just adding the tv card to cover every angle and also for the remote that comes with it (remote is WMP compat and also will remote power up a correctly connected pc).
the gfx, ram, mb and chip were bought with the idea of as much future proofing as possible (think ram upgrades, crossfired 5870s etc) and also for the purpose of allowing me to use my media pc as a gaming pc.
everything else is pretty much self explanatory i think.

the case issue

My missus wont allow me a pc that looks like a pc in the front room and I havnt come across a satisfactory HTPC case that will allow for the components i selected.
after reading in a popular silent pc website about a guy that built his pc from pine than accoustically screened it i had an idea.
In my front room is an awful ikea thing that has lots of square holes in it.
Long story short I am going to hijack 2 of these spaces (w:335mm,h:335mm,d:387mm times 2) and build my pc inside them.
I have checked and i have enough room cable wise to have my hdd/s, psu and blueray drive in one compartment. The mb and attached will be going in the other.

It is here where i need advice from you wise folks. Im fine with building a pc in a ready to go case but this is my first attempt at an abnormal case and i want it right first time.

im concerned about accidently electrocuting myself by making the mdf bookcase live - is this likely?
Im also concerned about the lack of electromagnetic interference screening and could use a solution for this.
Lastly and far more mundane I am limited on space and the cube with the mb and gfx card in it is likely to be quite warm, what HS would u recommend?

thx for reading my novel, hope you can offer some advice!

RB
October 30, 2010 11:22:27 PM

mdf is not going to conduct electricity so you wont be getting electrocuted from it

Mains power stops at the PSU which is earthed through the AC power cable . After that its a max of 12 volts . Go grab the terminals of your car battery . You will be pleasantly surprised it wont kill you ... or even make you feel a thing .

As for EMI /EMR you might have an issue if its close to another sensitive device but I think its unlikely . If in doubt then line the enclosure with metal foil

PS. Im working on a quiet plywood and carbon fiber case with bottom mounted fans and positive pressure . So far its just concept drawings but I will start building this week
October 30, 2010 11:27:21 PM

cheers outlander, my electrical knowledge is very limited ive just never had the time to learn enough about it so thanks for that. I am happy to take that answer at face value from a veteran poster!

id be interested to see your finished design - if i get this built ill throw some pics up here as well. Im also looking at drawing the air in through the bottom and out of the top in a similar way to cut down on the noise - got to keep the missus happy :p 

So can anyone recommend a Heatsink/fan for the CPU with the MB etc im using? needs to be air-cooled, ideally extremely quiet
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October 31, 2010 12:02:14 AM

Im going to use two 200 mm coolermaster fans blowing air in the bottom . Theyre the same as from the HAF case and are very quiet [ according to the reviews Ive read ] and shift a lot of air. Waiting for them to arrive and I guess I will find out soon .

Positive pressure raises the air density slightly and that improves heat transfer . Silverstone and Antec both make positive pressure cases

The psu is also bottom mounted and draws air from underneath the case . Warm air will exit and the top and back of my case . Carbon fiber/epoxy is conductive and should work well to create a Faraday cage and give the EMR shielding . And it will look pretty good too
!