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HELP!! Going NUTS over case and powersupply selection... :(

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February 10, 2011 9:07:07 PM

Hi all,

I am trying to build a custom AMD/ATI system for mostly work (analysis of large amounts of data), and some gaming (would like to play games like Assassins Creed)


I have the following requirements for the case:
-- Front panel must work (usb ports and audio ports etc). Seeing a lot of comments on newegg about cooler master cases having a problem with the front panel due to grounding issues
-- Case must not reboot on touching it (with some static electricity due to walking on carpet) .. again newegg has people complaining that their cooler master cases can reboot just by touching them
-- Must have decent and quiet air flow
-- Must have easily cleanable dust filters (would prefer that over having to open the rig and clean that)
-- must have good wire routing
-- must have bottom mount power supply
-- (if powersupply has a fan at top/bottom the case should have space in the bottom to allow it to suck up air from outside the box)

Case + power supply should be about $150

Case must have enough space for the Hyper 212+ CPU cooler, and perhaps a big GFX card that I may buy later on in future



I have spent more hours than I can afford searching for a suitable case. I short listed the following but none of them meet my specs:
-- Cooler master HAF 912 (not sure if its easy to clean dust filters, top of the case has a huge space that needs 2 fans or a huge fan to cover up... not sure if front panel would fail like in other CM models)
-- Cooler master 690 II Advanced (not sure if its easy to clean dust filters, concerns over CM's bad reputation with front panel failures)
-- Antec 300 (major concern with routing wiring... dust filters.. and also does not have hole in the base to allow power supply to suck air from outside the box)
-- Antec DF 30 (major concern with wire routing and no space in the bottom of the case to align with power supply fan) LOVE the dust filters with the DF series.. seem to be easy to clean and replace


Can anyone please suggest a case that meets at least the dust, noise, and wire routing requirements? I am thinking about sacrificing the preference of having a place in the bottom of the case for the powersupply to suck air from...

Easily clean able dust filters are a MUST have....

thanks for the help! hope I can finalize soon as I need to buy it asap..
a c 694 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 12:21:06 AM

Well my choice would be the CM 690II advanced, have a system in the older basic version (sometimes wish I had the filters) one of three CM cases I have ranging from 2 to 5 years old and no issues with front panel connectors.
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a b ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 12:29:42 AM

What Powersupply are you thinking ? -- for $150 for the case + PSU we'd need to know a bit more about the system to suggest a proper size PSU and that will determine what is left over for the case !
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February 11, 2011 12:37:14 AM


I am hoping to get a case for around $90, max 100

and PSU for 50 to 60$


System specs:
AMD Athlon II or Phenom II X4 (quad core) around 3 GHz

8GB of DDR3 ram

2 Hard disks (atleast 1 TB each) (no SSD for now)

Probably ASUS motherboard (as I have heard they are the best) with on-board gfx... and latest AMD chips 890 etc...

DVD-RW or BluRay drive

Hyper 212+ CPU cooler

3 or 4 fans on the case (including default ones. so if it comes with 3 might not add any more)


I am expecting that I can make do with 500W or 550W 80-plus PSU... I saw that some of those were available between 40 to 60$


Want a dust-free quiet system.. willing to spend a bit extra to reduce dust and noise


(Will be adding a good GFX card later, so need room for it and power for it....)
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February 11, 2011 12:38:35 AM



right now I like CM 690 II Advanced and fractal design R2 / R3 cases...

can anyone confirm if their front panels work? if their dust filters work? hows the noise ?


Can't find anyplace to buy fractal design in canada.. any suggestions...
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a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 1:01:49 AM

I have built two different platforms in a CM690II with no front panel issues.
It's a great case with no issues.
NCIX sells Fractal Design and usually has them for $99 on sale.

http://ncix.com/products/?sku=53537&vpn=DEFINE%2DR3%
$65 For Basic
http://www.memoryexpress.com/Products/PID-MX27161(ME).aspx
$79 for Advanced which is worth it.
http://infonec.com/site/main.php?module=detail&id=45044...
Pricematch that link for CM690II at NCIX if you're going to buy a psu and have both shipped together.
Check out NCIX's sale for psu click the Sweetheart sale banner.
Canada Computers also pricematches instock items.
OCZ FATAL1TY 550W ATX12V 20/24PIN Active PFC ATX Modular Power Supply 120MM Fan 80PLUS Black
http://ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=37047&vpn=OCZ550...
Antec Truepower New 650W Modular Power Supply ATX12V V2.3 Active PFC 80 Plus SLI Ready 120MM PWM Fan
http://ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=36263&vpn=TP%2D6...
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February 11, 2011 1:26:47 AM


thanks so much. I will go for the CM 690 II advanced as I like its cooling more than the R2 (see tests here: http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cases/2010/10/29/fract... )


The memoryexpress link has CM 690 II basic for 65$.. advanced is around 90$ everywhere... willing to spend that much on a good case..


The fractal design on ncix are $114... a bit pricey...

so my choices are:
690 II Advanced
Antec 902/900
R3
Antec DF series (DF 35 )

bit-tech's results don't show good cooling for 690 II and R3 though :( 


what would you recommend from the above list based on your experience esp about cooling, noise, dust and front panel

thanks!
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February 11, 2011 1:32:02 AM

oh and I am thinking of HAF 912 plus a 200mm top fan (so dust cant enter from the top as well)...

most likely will go for
antec 902
HAF 912
or CM 690 II advanced... i guess i should goto a store and feel them in real life then just relying on pictures...
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a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 1:47:46 AM

Well you're in luck because i also have a 902 and it's quieter then the CM690II and my 902 has 3 more 120mm fans .
The 902 is over $100 for sure though.
It's build quality is better = thicker side panels and less plastic.
The CM690II is a damn good case though for the money.
I've heard the Fractal's are good but the fans lack airflow.Most people end up changing them.They're really quiet but underpowered/cfm wise.
I would buy a 902v3 it's usually only $10 more then the original 902.
http://www.agileelectronics.ca/prod_details/tab/details...
pricematch link at NCIX
DF-35
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=6...
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a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 1:49:17 AM

uhaymid said:
oh and I am thinking of HAF 912 plus a 200mm top fan (so dust cant enter from the top as well)...

most likely will go for
antec 902
HAF 912
or CM 690 II advanced... i guess i should goto a store and feel them in real life then just relying on pictures...

912 is a level under the other two cases.
Only accepts 2x120mm at top unless you're drilling holes.
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February 11, 2011 1:51:17 AM


Perfect. Finally down to just 2 cases. I like the noise comment about Antec 902. How does it do in the dust area? how are the dust filters? easy to clean?
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February 11, 2011 1:52:31 AM

btw, and how do you find the retailer with the minimum price?
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February 11, 2011 1:55:13 AM


P.S. do you recommend setting fans to motherboard and letting bios regulate them (assuming most new motherboards and bioses will have that feature) ... ?? is that the best way to go usually?
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a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 2:04:17 AM

uhaymid said:
Perfect. Finally down to just 2 cases. I like the noise comment about Antec 902. How does it do in the dust area? how are the dust filters? easy to clean?

It's fine for dust i clean the filters every 2-3 weeks.
The filters are easy to clean.
Getting them out isn't the greatest.
You have to remove both side panels = 4 thumbscrews.
Then you have to undo both drive cages = 16 thumbscrews.
I've modified that down to 8 thumbscrews.
4 aside because there's no reason for that many thumbscrews.
Honestly it's a bit of a PITA but i can do it pretty quick now.
I also have a Corsair HX750 mounted fan side down with no dust/heat issues at all.
I removed it after a year of use and checked.
I also keep my rigs off the floor though which helps tremendously.
I use these 18" tall.
http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/40104270
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February 11, 2011 2:10:28 AM


After watching this I am in love with the CM 690 II advanced
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ed4RC6r2NTk&feature=rela...

esp given that it seems to be easy to clean its dust filters.. is that true? thanks for the suggestion of keeping them off the floor

you were REALLY helpful !!!


Just a few final words plz on CM 690 IIs cleaning of dust filters so that I can finalize it... and I will close this thread..
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Best solution

a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 2:25:54 AM

uhaymid said:
After watching this I am in love with the CM 690 II advanced
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ed4RC6r2NTk&feature=rela...

esp given that it seems to be easy to clean its dust filters.. is that true? thanks for the suggestion of keeping them off the floor

you were REALLY helpful !!!


Just a few final words plz on CM 690 IIs cleaning of dust filters so that I can finalize it... and I will close this thread..

Here's the best review done right by fellow Canucks!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGvBjEmXJnI
Yep! the front intake and top exhaust filters are easy to clean.
The whole front panel pulls off watch the vid.
As is the bottom fan filters.
One minor flaw which is retarded considering they got everything else right.
To clean the psu cut-out filter you have to remove the psu.
I have no idea why they would put the filter there since the ones beside it are underneath the case = not inside it.
It wasn't a big deal for me because i have a modular psu but could be a major PITA for a non-modular psu.
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a c 274 ) Power supply
February 11, 2011 2:31:32 AM

uhaymid said:
btw, and how do you find the retailer with the minimum price?

I sent you a private message.
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February 11, 2011 5:20:05 AM

Best answer selected by uhaymid.
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