The Enclosure Thread


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Call me pompous, but I thought I'd start this new topic, with a discussion related to enclosures. "Pimp Your Rig" must be my one favorite threads here, I love seeing all the builds people come up with. When I started with unRAID a few months ago, I had never built a computer myself, and I was at a bit of a loss as to what enclosure I should pick. I made the good choice of a Fractal Design R2∏=33, but I keep finding myself looking at other boxes, just because it's so damn geeky  ;)


Maybe you guys can chip in with enclosures that you think are worthy of a look. It would be a useful guide for newbies, as well as a good overview for upgraders, as well as compulsive, passionate builders (I'm looking at you, Raj ;) ). Of course there's the very popular Cooler Master 590 and the Norco 4220


- but there's so much more out there... For instance, I just discovered the pretty sexy Corsair's Graphite Series 600T I'm sure there are many, many more desirable enclosures. Let us know what you found!

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The Sharkoon cases


Rebel9 - basic case with 9 x 5,25 bay

Rebel9Pro - case with 9 x 5,25 bay, nicer black interior and cable management

Rebel9 Aluminium - as the Rebel9 Pro but with a nicer front

Rebel12 - case with 12 x 5,25 bay and 6 x 3,5 bay


Both are available in Economy (no fans) or Value (fans) version.

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Stop it you guys before I get the bug to build another machine. LOL

I like my Cooler Master 590, but they seem to be harder and harder to find. I really only wish that you could install the 4-3's without having to pull everything out to take out one drive, but I'm guessing that's just the way it is.





•Accommodates up to eight 120mm fans for efficient cooling-Removable HDD rack provides for easy assembly

•A fully meshed front panel provides superior airflow andmaximum cooling performance

•Tool-free user-friendliness for quick maintenance and upgrade

•The roomy interior allows for dual or triple graphics card setups

•Convert three 5.25" drive bays into a HDD module for four 3.5" drives with a 120mm LED cooling fan

•Cable Management holes for better cable routing and neatness

•Bottom mounted power supply for improved cooling and ease of installation

•Front I/O panel provides easy access to a variety of peripherals


Buy from NewEgg

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Nice useful topic.


Posts would be even better if they included photos along with concise descriptions. That would help readers assess at a glance those enclosures they might be interested in following up on, rather than link clicking or googleing every post, with lower odds what they find is actually of interest to them.

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Nice useful topic.


Posts would be even better if they included photos along with concise descriptions. That would help readers assess at a glance those enclosures they might be interested in following up on, rather than link clicking or googleing every post, with lower odds what they find is actually of interest to them.

Good point! I'll just start with the above mentioned Fractal Design R2.



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  • 4 weeks later...

i am looking for the moment for a 20+ case

and this is my list so far


Antec 1200 but he come short with the need for 22 drives (think max of 20 drives)


sharkoon rebel12 should be OK to host 22+ drives


NZXT Whisper think max 19 drives


Icute  A11-01 (SAME as the sharkoon rebel12)


Lian LI has several 20 drives possible cages




AND my personal favorite case


Lian Li PC-343B Modular Cube Case - Black




can hold 30 drives and seems like the mekka for watercooling nuts :)

IF tom ever makes a pro plus lisence or ups the pro drives then we will still be settled


there is a ebay auction going on for this case for the moment but i am not able to bid as i am in Thailand and sends to USA only


couldn't find an Lian li page on their website though, so it might be a slightly older case... i am trying to find one here in Thailand....


hope this post helps

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Bit overkill?


Even with the current limit of 21 drives, you can climb up to about 40TB of usable raw space with today's technology. That's a whole heap of space.


With 3TB drives coming down the pipeline in 2011, and looking like unRAID 5.1 supporting these drives (as long as current crop of motherboards support them), we could potentially see 60TB raw space..


I've only got about 7.5 so far. ;)

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When looking at chassis to support >15 drives, I am just window shopping as I have no need for that amount of space.


However I came across this case and thought some might be interested. I really like it although it isn't a full x-in-y solution (9 internal bays, up to 13 external bays using a pair of 5-in-3's and one 3-in-2).

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If you like the Lian Li cube case, you might also like some of the Mountain Mods cube-style cases too. Though they don't include as many 5.25" bays, so not as easily usable for Hot-Swap Trays. Personally, I wasn't as impressed with the quality of the paint job on my MountainMod U2-UFO Opti-1203 considering the outlandish pricing on it, but it served it's purpose for my water-cooling system. I picked it up close to 5 years ago so maybe they've improved since then. You should always be able to trust Lian Li quality though.


I do like all the 5.25" bays on the Antec and Lian Li models, both the 1200 and the cube-case.

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Too bad it only has 9 5.25" bays..


The antec 1200 has 12 5.25" bays which can support 4x 5in3's, giving you a total of 20 bays in a tower.


I think this may be the maximum for a tower.. Anything more, you'll have to go to a Norco.


The Sharkoon Rebel 12 can fit 26 drives if you use 5in3s.

I'm in the middle of moving drives in mine and should have 22 drives in a few days. I'll post pics when done.

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I just discovered this one, as it is currently on sale.


Thermaltake V6 BlacX Edition Gaming Chassis Mid Tower Steel Computer Case BlacX Top Mounted HDD Docking Station VM100M1W2Z





Very similar design to the CM-590 and the Antec 900/902.  However, this one has a top mounted HDD dock, which it seems to me would be perfect as a dedicated preclear slot.  It also costs about the same as the CM-590, and half the price of the Antec 900/902.


I just ordered one for fun, so I'll let you guys know how it turns out.

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I currently have a 17 drive array in an RPC-4220 that I need to bring back to life.  I am plagued with shotty connections of the drives to the motherboard through a mix of SATA cards and some plugged directly into the mobo. 


I decided today that I need to rebuild this array.  Looking at all these cases I'm having a hard time trying to figure out how you're getting 20+ drives in there, when they advertise to have 10 or so 3.5" slots.  I realize you can get adapters to put more drives in 5.25" bays, but that's where I start to get a little confused.  Which cases come with these adapters?


Any suggestions for me?




P.S.  I LOVE Lian Li cases, but that cube does seem a bit overkill.

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The cases in this thread are cases people like, use or considered when setting up their current or next UnRaid server. There is no requirement that they must hold 20 plus drives.


Few cases come with adaptors, unless you look at Norco custom designed disk array style cases.

3-2,4-3, 5-3 style adaptors are available from several companies.


With your current situation, back to basics.


Do all drives identify at "power on" reliably? no look at power supply. PSU splitters if you have then should be thoroughly checked (power down the system). Pull on each side of the splitter the cable on the other side should move the same and consistent amount if it doesnt it is making a bad contact. This can often be fixed by squeezing the sockets gently so they mate more firmly.


Are the drives recording smart errors? UDMA_CRC_Error_Count numbers usually indicate a cabling error. However these could be from a previous problem so ensure they are still being recorded for the drive in question.


Cable lengths. Try to keep all cables as short as possible.


If a cable is suspect, cut it up. They are cheap to buy, dont leave it laying around. Chances are you will re-use it and re-introduce errors. This applies to backplanes as well. Are all the drives giving issue furthest from the data plug? Try moving them closer to the data socket.


Post up a sys log and we'll take a look and offer advice.


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So where can one buy a Sharkoon case in the US?


I think Sharkoon is a German company, so it's unlikely to be called that. Someone found the same case in Asia (Thailand?) with a different name, so it may be available, but under a different name.


I think I was the first to use the Rebel 12 for unRAID, and only found it after looking at almost every case on the market in the UK in order to found what I was after -- a cheap case that could hold the most drives. So, you may find the case or something like it in the U.S. just by doing the kind of "deep search" I did.  ;D

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