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Tower Cases with most bays?


wickedathletes

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My current tower is capped about 10 drives. I am looking to expand, ideally doubling that number. I was wondering the best bet to get a tower that will hold 18-22 drives without major modifications, if any exist. I’m cool with adding 3x5’s or new cages, I just don’t want to deal with drilling holes or sauldering.

 

is the Fractal Designs XL the best out there?

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I cheated and designed a machine with two tower cases bolted together side-by-side. Twice the front real-estate and the empty right-hand semi-tower can fit a large amount of drives internally too. I had an initial goal of >= 24 3,5" hot-swap and >= 10 2,5" which made it hard to find any standard case after Chieftec stopped selling their Jumbo 1500 and Jumbo 1800 cases.

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I went with an AZZA Solano 1000R, which looks like older model AZZA CSAZ-GT. Three 5-drive-bays (two currently), and there are two more internal 5.25" bays which ultimately I'll put my cache drives into that space.  To mod the case I used pliers and a large C-clamp to bend tabs out of the way, instead of cutting.

 

Not quite the size you were looking for, but perhaps you'll find it interesting/useful. 

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On 8/29/2018 at 9:55 AM, wickedathletes said:

and it looks like it holds 14 drives (13 3.5" and 2 2.5") plus converting the 3x5.25 to a 5 bay hub is possible?

 

So essentially its:

     - 18 3.5" drives and 2 2.5" drives?

I'm running 16 x 3.5" drives and I think I have one free 3.5" slot left.
I'm using a single 2.5" drive and know I have one more 2.5" slot left.

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What is your budget? How many drives are you looking to put into a case? There are rack mount options on eBay from SuperMicro, they aren't cheap but I have a 36 bay rackmount server, every drive is hot plug. There are cheaper rack mount cases you can stuff 24 drives into. Tower options seem pretty limited these days though.

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My UnRaid uses a used Antec 1200 V3 case, found local. I also sourced a beat up Antec 900 case on the cheap, via Ebay for additional bays + fans. I am now keeping an eye  out for a second Antec 1200 V3, and plan to stack them vertically, as such, for 24 bays.  A ssd will reside in an Origen pci ssd bracket,  to avoid taking up any drive bay storage.  I am starting out with 6 WD 8 TB EasyStore shucked drives plus a 2 TB and 3 TB pair of Seagate drives, that resided in my previous desktop. 

Hossian Oveys server rack idea.jpg

Origen pci ssd bracket.jpg

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On 9/2/2018 at 11:01 AM, ashman70 said:

What is your budget? How many drives are you looking to put into a case? There are rack mount options on eBay from SuperMicro, they aren't cheap but I have a 36 bay rackmount server, every drive is hot plug. There are cheaper rack mount cases you can stuff 24 drives into. Tower options seem pretty limited these days though.

I have thought about a server rack but then I run into dealing with getting a chassis and also dealing with whether my current hardware with work with the case correct? That’s been my concern moving to something like that.

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17 hours ago, testdasi said:

If you can get it the Lian Li D8000 fits 20x3.5" + 5x5.25" (in a 3x 2x config) + 2x2.5". And it has wheels.

I have a D8000, and it's a really nice case.  When I got it in 2016, there weren't a lot of online stores still selling them, so if you want one, good luck. 

 

(Checked with The Googles, and I found this)

https://www.pccasegear.com/products/21445/lian-li-pc-d8000-black-full-tower-chassis

 

Pretty sure that's about $100 more than I paid, but the people running that site, know it's a nice case with restricted inventories.  So...

 

I went from a case that had 9 5.25 inch bays, in which I had 3 5x3 drive cages in it.  For a total of 17 drives, at the time 1 parity and 14 data drives, with 2 cache drives installed in pci slot drive cages.  I only have 18 drives in the D8000,  2 cache, 2 parity and 14 data.  I had some 2  old 1TB data drives that were 7+ years old I decided to swapout with 10TB drives, shortly after moving the server to the new case.  

 

You could easily load 28 3.5inch drives into the D8000 by using 1 5x3 cage on the left, and 1 3x2 cage on the right.  Don't understand Lian Li's decision to take up a 5.25 inch bay with the power button and front usb ports, but it is what it is.  And that's my only complaint really.  Right now I have 2 fan controllers in the other 2 5.25inch bays on the right.  There are a lot of possible fan positions in the case too, and I have a fan in each one, so figured what the heck.  Cache and unassigned 2.5 inch drives can be mounted with pci slot devices.  There are 11 pci slots, so depending on the size of your motherboard, you've got a lot of options there as well.  

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