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The Enclosure Thread

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51 minutes ago, TUMS said:

 

Yes that's why I mentioned you can adjust fan thresholds.....  You don't have to go swapping fans that's just silly.

Ahhh my apologizes I didn't realize what you were getting at! :)

 

Void4ever

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A buddy of mine saw this case and I thought i'd ask your guy's opinions.

Azza CSAZ-GT 1

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811517030

http://www.azzatek.com/m/2001-1307-415288-1.php?Lang=en

 

For 67 bucks (47 with a rebate until Jan31st) I think this might be the case i was looking for. It's a little ugly imo, but aside from that it meets my requirements. Excellent cable management because of the room, 9 bays for a total of 15 drives, and under a 100 bucks.

Thoughts?

 

Void4ever

 

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Looks like this could do the job, if you have the room for it -- it's a full tower. The price is certainly right (-:
I'm a bit confused by the airflow options -- with multiple HDs in front, IMO the best way to go is definitely front-to-back for all fans, aligned along the HDs & internal cards, toward the back ports. Many of the pics (also in the Tom's review linked ot from their site) seem to assume bottom-to-top airflow.
The only thing I'd be concerned about is some of the the QA- & build quality -related complaints in the Newegg & Amazon reviews -- maybe not an issue if the server stays put once it's built.
See if you can find a review of someone using it in a NAS build and/or with lots of drives in 5-in-3 cages, to see if there are long-term heat issues. From the look of the 5.25" trays, there will be tabs separating the bays you'll need to bend back or break off.

I'd still consider the Antec 900 as well -- there's seems to be experience using hot-swap cages with it, and it's currently not that expensive -- $70 after rebate at Newegg.

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7 hours ago, void4ever said:

A buddy of mine saw this case and I thought i'd ask your guy's opinions.

Azza CSAZ-GT 1

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811517030

http://www.azzatek.com/m/2001-1307-415288-1.php?Lang=en

 

For 67 bucks (47 with a rebate until Jan31st) I think this might be the case i was looking for. It's a little ugly imo, but aside from that it meets my requirements. Excellent cable management because of the room, 9 bays for a total of 15 drives, and under a 100 bucks.

 

 

Actually I just bought this case. General impressions: it's exactly what I wanted ATX, 9x 5.25" bays that you mentioned, the metal used is good gauge, it's not flimsy. CONS: This S.O.B. IS BIG! Really big! By BIG I mean the height, you look at it and you find yourself asking, "Am I over-compensating for something? Sigmund?"  I personally don't like the top bit, The plastic is like a 90's computer front-panel cover.  Functionally I like it, and as you said it's inexpensive. Aesthetically I perfer it with out the plastic top and front cover, but that's me.

Also note below the 9x 5.25 external bays there are two more INTERNAL 5.25" bays below it with some 2.5" to 3.5" shims it's a good place for cache/SSD drives.

 

My grand scheme is to couple the case with three of these Icy Dock 3x(5.25" bays) 5x(3.5" drive tray less enclosure) I have one, need to buy/grow into the next two. Forgot to mention, if you want to go with the trayless Dock I suggested, you'll need to do some case modification (dremel with a number of disc cutters) to remove the bottom holding tabs for each of top two slots (out of the three the bays take up).

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Edited by Jcloud
Pictures, or I'm just larping, right? ;)

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I found one of THESE brand new on the clearance rack of a mom and pop computer store.

 

$75 (have a $170 price tag on it).

 

12 drive slots (enough for 4 5in3s (20 drives)). Lots of aluminum. On wheels. Made like a tank!

 

It is taking a little modification with a dremel and hole saw (to enlarge the top fan), but I love it!

 

Looks like the Antec is going to be retired soon!

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1 hour ago, SSD said:

I found one of THESE brand new on the clearance rack of a mom and pop computer store.

 

$75 (have a $170 price tag on it).

 

12 drive slots (enough for 4 5in3s (20 drives)). Lots of aluminum. On wheels. Made like a tank!

 

It is taking a little modification with a dremel and hole saw (to enlarge the top fan), but I love it!

 

Looks like the Antec is going to be retired soon!

 

Woh, wave of nostalgia seeing those sorts of beasts in Lawyer offices or cdr cloning days of old. Queue, the South Park detectives, "Niicce!"

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3 hours ago, GreenDolphin said:

I'd still consider the Antec 900 as well -- there's seems to be experience using hot-swap cages with it, and it's currently not that expensive -- $70 after rebate at Newegg.

 

I own one. The Antec 900 is a solid case, it would be a decent buy. The main CON I found with it, there is no room to run cables behind the motherboard or motherboard tray. So be sure to run good lines with your cabling, and also it can get cramp in cabling because you can't go behind, example the 12-volt CPU power cable, best route for that is to have it go over your motherboard, but under your graphics card -- if the header is located in the back of the case (or top left corner, looking inside) otherwise if the header is on the right you go around the board, but depending on your power supply this route could get a tad short; and you take up more room you'll need for enclosures.

Edited by Jcloud
Because I always think of more after clicking POST.

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3 hours ago, SSD said:

I found one of THESE brand new on the clearance rack of a mom and pop computer store.

 

$75 (have a $170 price tag on it).

 

12 drive slots (enough for 4 5in3s (20 drives)). Lots of aluminum. On wheels. Made like a tank!

 

It is taking a little modification with a dremel and hole saw (to enlarge the top fan), but I love it!

 

Looks like the Antec is going to be retired soon!

That's... a lot of drives, despite being >8cm shorter than the Azza.
Looks like it's been discontinued for years, but the Cooler Master Storm Trooper is still being made; a bit more expensive, however -- currently $126 after rebate on Amazon. It does however have 4 included fans, and a 2-drive 2.5" dock in addition to the 9x 5.25" bays. There's even a built-in toolbox to keep all the screws, cables brackets etc. (-:

Bottom line, looks like there are still a few choices.

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5 hours ago, SSD said:

I found one of THESE brand new on the clearance rack of a mom and pop computer store.

?  I have two of those, with a small adaptation where the bottom power supply should go for 3 additional drives, so they can take 23 drives max.

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5 hours ago, johnnie.black said:

?  I have two of those, with a small adaptation where the bottom power supply should go for 3 additional drives, so they can take 23 drives max.

Few questions if you wouldn't mind ...

 

1. Can you explain the mod you did? Hot swap or fixed installs? Cooling fan?  Have a picture by chance? Too bad the opening is so short. 80mm fans are pretty small.

 

2. I am removing the 80mm top fan and replacing with a 120mm exhaust. Took a little dremeling on the upper PSU cage to remove a cross member to make room. Expanding that 80mm square into a 120mm (4.5" actually) hole is not going to be easy, but have a plan. Did you do a similar mod or leave this fan alone?

 

3. Considering adding 200mm fan to the side panel for extra cooling. Did you put a fan there? (If so, input or exhaust). Read side fans in general may not be helpful. But with 2 GPUs + more powerful CPU in there, might need extra cooling. 

 

4. Getting the 12th (top) front drive slot free required removing the piece that includes the power button, reset button, lights, and usb slots. I don't care about the usb, or even the lights, but definitely need power and reset. What did you do?

 

Thanks man! 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, SSD said:

Getting the 12th (top) front drive slot free required removing the piece that includes the power button, reset button, lights, and usb slots. I don't care about the usb, or even the lights, but definitely need power and reset.

Given how much cutting and modding you are doing, why not just mount a couple momentary switches somewhere? It's not like the power button and reset are special that you have to use the ones that come with the case. If you like overkill modding, a couple of these with covers or this as a power button would be pretty badass and easy to mount, just a couple round holes.

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19 minutes ago, SSD said:

1. Can you explain the mod you did? Hot swap or fixed installs? Cooling fan?  Have a picture by chance? Too bad the opening is so short. 80mm fans are pretty small.

It's fixed, I used a 3 in 2's I had unused for each case, they are fixed to the PSU holes using old PSU parts, and have a single 80mm fan, I usually only put two drives max in there, partially because the cooling isn't very good, partially because I like even numbers more, next time I open one of the cases I'll take some pictures

 

22 minutes ago, SSD said:

2. I am removing the 80mm top fan and replacing with a 120mm exhaust. Took a little dremeling on the upper PSU cage to remove a cross member to make room. Expanding that 80mm square into a 120mm (4.5" actually) hole is not going to be easy, but have a plan. Did you do a similar mod or leave this fan alone?

Left it alone, don't have fans there.

 

23 minutes ago, SSD said:

3. Considering adding 200mm fan to the side panel for extra cooling. Did you put a fan there? (If so, input or exhaust). Read side fans in general may not be helpful. But with 2 GPUs + more powerful CPU in there, might need extra cooling. 

I have a 200mm input fan on each, mostly for cooling the HBA and/or expanders.

 

25 minutes ago, SSD said:

4. Getting the 12th (top) front drive slot free required removing the piece that includes the power button, reset button, lights, and usb slots. I don't care about the usb, or even the lights, but definitely need power and reset. What did you do?

A little double sided tape and the cables (power/reset/leds only) go in through the top fan opening.

 

5a58bd2f676b7_2018-01-1213_46_44.jpg.5c9aa3a33b3f3dad216f483ae2d609b0.jpg

 

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1 hour ago, jonathanm said:

Given how much cutting and modding you are doing, why not just mount a couple momentary switches somewhere? It's not like the power button and reset are special that you have to use the ones that come with the case. If you like overkill modding, a couple of these with covers or this as a power button would be pretty badass and easy to mount, just a couple round holes.

 

Yea - that's what I was thinking.

 

Found these, that are a little pricey but would mount nicely on plastic panel at top front.

 

https://mnpctech.com/case-mods-gaming-pc-liquid-modding-custom-computer-mnpctech-overclock-cooling-fan-grills/switches-toggle-pc-computer-power-reset/red-vandal-resistant-pc-power-switch-22mm-clone.html

 

Other idea was to disable the case intrusion switch, and use that for power. Don't think I much use the reset button on the unRAID server. Used it from time to time on old Windows boxes. This would be super secret. If off, no one could figure out how to turn on!

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1 hour ago, johnnie.black said:

It's fixed, I used a 3 in 2's I had unused for each case, they are fixed to the PSU holes using old PSU parts, and have a single 80mm fan, I usually only put two drives max in there, partially because the cooling isn't very good, partially because I like even numbers more, next time I open one of the cases I'll take some pictures

 

Ahhhh. Makes sense. I'll look in my spare parts I probably have something similar. Don't know if I'll use it for spinners, as I want the hot-swap for them, but sounds good for SSDs. But I do have 2 RAID0 drives for parity. Might consider putting them there if I can get good cooling to them. They almost never need to come out or be swapped around. And cabling just two drives not much risk.

 

1 hour ago, johnnie.black said:

Left it alone, don't have fans there.

 

Yea - too bad they didn't think to put a 120mm fan there. Disadvantage of a case from that era, when 120mm were considered large, and 80mm more the standard.

 

I have a 4.5" hole saw. Planning to drill the fan mounting holes in the top of the case, and use them to screw a piece of plywood to the top of the case. Then use the plywood to drill in the arboring hole. Should work and keep the hole saw from bouncing around as it hits the case cutout for the 80mm fan. Once cut I can unscrew the plywood and mount the fan. While writing this I thought about moving to a 140mm fan on top. Have to check to see if there is room.

 

1 hour ago, johnnie.black said:

 

I have a 200mm input fan on each, mostly for cooling the HBA and/or expanders.

 

Can you clarify? I think there is only room for one 200mm fan. They are huge. Are you using 2 120mm fans mounted in that round cutout? Think it might fit, but not sure how you'd secure them. The 200mm can screw to the rather flimsy metal tabs that are present, but not sure if it would be good enough to not rattle. Probably would need to secure it better.

 

On my setup, my 5in3s each have a strong 92mm fan. So I'd have 4 of those + 200mm (100 cfm) fan blowing in, and two 120mm blowing out, (one back and one top), maybe 80mm fan in the lower PSU area, as well as the PSU exhaust. I have some rather loud 120mm fans that move a lot of air, but even using them there is still going to be a lot more air coming in than going out (not optimal). If I omit the 200mm fan, the in and out flow would balance better. I already have the 200mm fan, so may try both ways and see what happens to the temps under load. Still considering if there is another location for another exhaust fan.

 

1 hour ago, johnnie.black said:

 

A little double sided tape and the cables (power/reset/leds only) go in through the top fan opening.

 

5a58bd2f676b7_2018-01-1213_46_44.jpg.5c9aa3a33b3f3dad216f483ae2d609b0.jpg

 

 

So you are using the 80mm hole for something. See my post above. Thinking of just have two pushbuttons in the black plastic. Or use the intrusion switch rigged for as power initially.

 

Thanks Johnnie!

 

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2 minutes ago, SSD said:

Can you clarify? I think there is only room for one 200mm fan.

Sorry, wasn't clear, I meant one 200mm side fan on each tower, they also have one 120mm exhaust on the rear, one 80mm for the extra bottom storage and currently one is with 4  x 5in3s with 92mm fans and the other has 4 x 4in3s with 120mm fans, all non hot swap :'(, yeah I'd like hot swap but they are very expensive to source in Europe and I already spend more money than I should on my servers.

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21 minutes ago, johnnie.black said:

Sorry, wasn't clear, I meant one 200mm side fan on each tower, they also have one 120mm exhaust on the rear, one 80mm for the extra bottom storage and currently one is with 4  x 5in3s with 92mm fans and the other has 4 x 4in3s with 120mm fans, all non hot swap :'(, yeah I'd like hot swap but they are very expensive to source in Europe and I already spend more money than I should on my servers.

 

Ahhh, makes sense. How did  you mount - did you use those somewhat flimsy metal strips I mentioned?

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32 minutes ago, SSD said:

did you use those somewhat flimsy metal strips I mentioned?

Yep, just bent them a little so the fan sits inside, on some rare occasions I can get a small vibration, but since it's very seldom didn't try to improve it yet.

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On 1/11/2018 at 7:13 PM, GreenDolphin said:

I'm a bit confused by the airflow options -- with multiple HDs in front, IMO the best way to go is definitely front-to-back for all fans, aligned along the HDs & internal cards, toward the back ports. Many of the pics (also in the Tom's review linked ot from their site) seem to assume bottom-to-top airflow.
 

 

I'm confused about this as well..  Or I guess I should say I'm confused about cooling in general..  I get the front to back concept, and could even understand bottom to top, but for example, with that case, I seem to see a fan in the bottom front, which presumably would be sucking in from the front.  Wouldn't the increased pressure from that tend to counteract the fans sucking from behind any 5-in-3's I install in this case?  

 

Is there a recommended case for a reasonable price that seems to have cooling as a high priority design concept?

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1 hour ago, 172pilot said:

Or I guess I should say I'm confused about cooling in general

To make it simpler, just try to force all the air that will flow through the case to flow over the hard drives. Air will follow the path of least resistance, so seal up any openings that will allow air to bypass the drives, and like you said, you would want to turn that bottom front fan around so it will exhaust air and help the drives suck in air.

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As Jonathanm noted, the key is to force as much air as possible directly over the drives.    The BEST case I've ever used for an UnRAID build was a Lian-Li PC-80, which has a swing-out door with 3 140mm fans on it that REALLY give spectacular airflow directly across the hard drives you've mounted.    You can use up to 4 5-in-3 cages in it, and with the extra air from the front fans I NEVER saw temps above the mid-30's, even during a parity check.

 

Unfortunately, the PC-80 is no longer available (I've been looking for the past year to try and get one for a build of my own).    The best airflow solution I've found for hard drives is the Icy Dock Vortex 4-in-3 units, which have a 120mm fan in front that blows directly over the drives.    I've found that this unit keeps my drives about 6-8 degrees cooler than the 5-in-3 units I replaced, which had 80mm fans in the rear "pulling" air over the drives instead of the larger fans blowing a much higher volume of air directly onto the drives.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817994171&cm_re=Icy_Dock_Vortex-_-17-994-171-_-Product

 

If anyone happens to know where to find a PC-80 please let me know :D

 

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They have the PC-A79 with 3 fans up front, not sure they are on a door however.

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3 hours ago, Tybio said:

They have the PC-A79 with 3 fans up front, not sure they are on a door however.

 

The A79 is a typical "fans in front" case, where the fans are "inside" the case and need to be removed if, for example, you want to use 5-in-3 hotswap cages.    With the A80 you can use these cages and still have the larger, higher airflow, 140mm fans blowing air directly into the cages, which greatly enhances the cooling capabilities.    When I had an A80 here (while I was building a system for a friend a couple years ago), the difference in temps between just using the 5-in-3 cage fans and closing the door was about 6-8 degrees on a parity check.   I've NEVER seen any cooling combination that did as well as that case.    It's a real shame it's no longer available.   I've actually thought about building a small "tower" with 3 140mm fans that I could set in front of any system I want to provide roughly the same degree of extra airflow [wouldn't be as good, however, since there would be a path around the edges for air to "escape".].

 

 

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I had some ancient cheftek case with 80mm fans in weird spots. I recently replaced it with a CM HAF 912.  It has 6 bays with rails and 5 external bays allowing me to move my 5-in-3 cage to it.  Drive temps are amazing now with all the airflow (21C to 27C) and cable management means less clutter and airflow restrictions.  I have not used the 5-in-3 cage yet as the drives from that now all fit in the HAF bays. I may just replace that with a icydock vortex type bay as I'm finding the hot swap bays tend to have such limited airflow out the back.

 

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