Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 4, 2016 - 01:04 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: SPEC-ALPHA, corsair, CES, carbide, 400Q, 400C
Corsair announced three new Carbide cases at CES this morning, the SPEC-ALPHA, 400Q and 400C. The SPEC-ALPHA includes feet to allow for airflow under the case and drops 5.25" bays completely, instead allowing you to install fans that will blow directly onto the CPU socket. The front panel includes USB 3.0 ports and a three speed fan controller to allow you to easily adjust your systems acoustics. You can also opt for a 240mm radiator if you prefer watercooling to blowing hot air around. The cases comes in red or black and will be on sale for $79.99 in the near future.
- Bold Exterior Design with front intake LED fans: The asymmetrical, hard-edged design of the SPEC-ALPHA gives it a bold, unique look.
- Direct airflow path to keep CPUs and GPUs running cooler: Modern systems don’t need bulky drive cages obstructing the airflow. By removing the 5.25” drive cage, the SPEC-ALPHA has a direct path from the front intake fan to the CPU and GPU.
- Large side panel window to show off your hardware: Why hide it? All that performance hardware looks great, so why not look at it through the huge side panel window?
- Three included 120mm fans and built-in three-speed fan controller: Watching a movie? Flip the switch for nearly silent operation. Throwing on the headset for some online gaming? Flip it to high and keep the GPU cool for better framerates.
- Cable routing cutouts and tie downs: Nobody wants to see a rat’s nest of cables, so hide them behind the motherboard tray to keep cable routing neat, tidy, and out of the airflow path for better cooling.
- Easy to build: Tool-free drive installation and side panel removal means less time spent building and more time gaming.
- Front 240mm radiator compatibility: Upgrade to the power of liquid cooling for CPUs or GPUs with up to a 240mm Hydro Series cooler.
- Native USB 3.0 and SSD support for modern builds: Whether it’s a new external drive for storage or a new SSD for the user’s preferred OS or games, the SPEC-ALPHA is ready for anything.
Next up are the Carbide Series 400Q and 400C cases with a similar internal design but unique exteriors. They are full ATX cases and have the same Direct Airflow as the SPEC-ALPHA, however as the are larger you also have space to install a 360mm radiator in front, a 240mm radiator on top and a 120mm radiator in the rear. The PSU and drives are installed at the bottom, the cover allows separated airflow as well as helping to give your system a clean look, especially if you take advantage of the included cable management features. They will both retail at $99.99.
The 400Q features a solid side panel with sound dampening materials on all sides to help ensure quiet operation.
The 400C has a large window for those who prefer to show off their components and overall build quality.
Carbide 400C and Carbide 400Q
- Clean, modern lines with an all-steel exterior: Get rid of those plastic cases – the 400C and 400Q have full steel front and top panels for extra durability and stunning looks.
- Compact design, full size capabilities: Despite the 400C and 400Q’s compact dimensions, they can house a full ATX motherboard and multiple GPUs.
- Direct Airflow Path: One way to reduce noise is to make sure fans don’t work harder than they have to. By removing the drive cages behind the intake fans, the 400C and 400Q provide a more efficient direct airflow path to the hottest components, the CPU and GPU.
- Liquid cooling capable: With room for up to a 360mm radiator in front, a 240mm radiator on top, and a 120mm radiator in rear, the 400C and 400Q can mount a wide range of Corsair Hydro-series liquid coolers.
- Two AF series fans: Corsair-exclusive AF120L and AF140L fans efficiently draw ample cool air directly to components without the turbulence that can cause fan hum.
- Easy to Build: Tool-free drive installation, side panel access, and tons of cable routing options and tie downs means less time spent building a PC and more time using it.
- PSU and 3.5” Bay Cover: It’s easy to tidy the inside of the case by placing cables and drives behind two modular, clean, and refined PSU and 3.5” bay covers.
- Easy to Clean: Easily access dust filters on front, top, and bottom mean it’ll never take more than a minute getting dust out of the system.
Carbide 400Q Only
Silenced panels for quiet operation: Sound damping material placed on the front panel, side panels, and top panel reduces component noise.
Carbide 400C Only
Hinged and latched full side-panel window: Components are easily accessible and when closed, every part of the build is visible through the full side-panel window.
Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!
Introduction and Features
SilverStone recently introduced a new line of Platinum certified PC power supplies, which they claim are the world’s smallest 80 Plus Platinum, full-modular ATX power supplies. The new Strider Platinum Series currently includes three models, the ST55F-PT (550W), ST65F-PT (650W) and ST75F-PT (750W). All of the Strider Platinum Series PSUs are designed to provide quiet, reliable operation in a small package. The cooling fan incorporates Fluid Dynamic Bearings (FDB) for quiet-reliable operation and an intelligent fan control permits fanless operation at low power. While the typical 750W power supply enclosure measures 160mm (6.3”) deep, the Strider Platinum Series are housed in a 140mm chassis (5.5”).
(Courtesy of SilverStone)
The main focus of this review will be on the 750W ST75F-PT model, but the good folks at SilverStone also sent along one of the 550W (ST55F-PT) models so we will include test results for both units for comparison. It’s always nice to receive two different units in the same series to help confirm operation and performance parameters.
SilverStone Strider Platinum Series Key Features:
• 550W, 650W, and 750W DC power output
• Compact design with a depth of only 140mm for easy integration
• High efficiency with 80 Plus Platinum certification
• 100% Modular cables
• Intelligent semi-fanless operation
• Quiet 120mm cooling fan with Fluid Dynamic Bearing
• 24/7 Continuous power output with 40°C operating temperature
• Strict ±3% voltage regulation and low AC ripple & noise
• Dedicated single +12V rail
• Conforms to ATX12V and EPS standards
• Universal AC input (90-264V) with Active PFC
• Dimensions: 150mm (W) x 86mm (H) x 140mm (L)
Here is what SilverStone has to say about the new Strider Platinum Series PSUs: "As desktop computers continue to advance toward ever more efficient and smaller designs, SilverStone is helping to drive the efficiency movement by releasing the Strider Platinum Series of power supplies. Created to be the smallest fully modular ATX power supplies with 80 Plus Platinum efficiency, they are also incredibly quiet with the ability to run in fanless mode. If the loading condition is below 20%, the fan in the power supply can remain off for silent operation during idle or low powered computing activities. Other great features inherited from previous Strider series includes ±3% regulation, powerful single +12V rail, 24/7 continuous power output, and multiple PCI-E cables. For those looking to build highly efficient systems in small footprints, the Strider Platinum is definitely the best choice.”
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 29, 2015 - 01:27 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: corsair, Carbide Series 600Q, Carbide 600Q, eatx
Corsair may have been aiming for minimalist noise and style but certainly not minimalist size, at 454x260x535mm (18x10x21") this case will handle the largest of coolers, motherboards or GPUs with space to spare. It contains a pair of 5.25" bays, three dedicated 2.5" bays and two 3.5/2.5" bays along with eight expansion slots and a pair of both USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports. Watercoolers will love this case, with multiple locations available for your radiator to be installed as well as numerous grommets to keep cables out of the way, aircoolers will be able to install up to 6 fans. [H]ard|OCP gave this $150 case a Gold Award, check out the full story here.
"Minimalist style" and "minimalist noise," is how Corsair describes its new Carbide Series 600Q computer chassis. While some might prefer a case that looks like it was designed by Voltron, Corsair goes the opposite direction with the 600Q and is looking to check all the boxes that make a chassis desirable; easy to use, quiet, and cool."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
Introduction and First Impressions
EKWB now has a pair of all-in-one liquid CPU coolers on the market, and today we have the 240 mm variant on the test bench. Long known as a supplier of water blocks (the WB in EKWB stands for water blocks, after all) and other parts for custom liquid cooling, how will EKWB's foray into self-contained liquid CPU coolers fare?
The Predator 240 take a very different approach to self-contained CPU cooling, being a pre-assembled unit comprised of separate, and removable, parts. Though pre-filled and ready to use as a CPU cooler out of the box, the Predator 240 (and to a greater degree the larger Predator 360) can be expanded to cool additional components, and customized as the user desires.
This versitility doesn't come cheap, but the Predator is actually a pretty good value when you price out the components that make up the whole. Looking through EKWB's site the water block is available separately for $54.99, the radiator is $61.99, the two fans are $17.99 each, and then there's the pump, hoses, fittings, and coolant to buy.
Still, at $199.95 the Predator 240 is at the top of the heap for price in this category (among 240 mm options), regardless of the apparent quality of the components. And while this may have more in common with a custom loop than your typical all-in-one CPU cooler, the only thing that really matters is performance. To test this I put it to work on the cooling test bench against some of the other coolers I have on hand. We'll see what it can do.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 24, 2015 - 07:01 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: canola oil
ASCII.jp has been immersing computing devices in canola oil, because I guess mineral oil is too safe or something. While the article is not very receptive to automatic translation, from what I gather, they've already toasted a couple devices. This time, they took an ECS LIVA Core to the dunk tank and filled it with about four liters of said canola oil, which is about a US gallon.
Again, if you're looking to do oil cooling yourself, just use mineral oil.
Image Credit: ASCII.jp
The PC was passively cooled, using just the circulation caused by currents of relatively warm oil. I say relatively warm, because the Core M has a single-digit expected wattage. They allowed OCCT to run for eight hours, which yielded a stable temperature of about 44C in a 24C room. Again, this is without pumps or radiators or anything like that. The only difference between this and passive air cooling is how effective oil is at absorbing heat, in speed and capacity, compared to air. That said, air is a fairly good insulator, so that should imply that oil has a better chance.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 18, 2015 - 03:07 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: xfx, XTR 850W, modular psu, 80 Plus Gold
XFX has a lot of branding on the new XTR series of PSUs including EasyRail, which means it uses a single 12V rail, on this model providing up to 840W @ 70A as well as a "True Wattage" guarantee and 80 Plus Gold. [H]ard|OCP put these claims to the test when they reviewed this PSU and did not find it lacking. There were a few tests which the PSU did not excel at but when they tested voltage regulation this PSU finished miles ahead of the competition. [H] also mentions that this unit was previously sold as the Pro Series Gold, the internals of the two are identical as is the serial number so keep an eye out when shopping so you can see if you can get a deal. Also worth noting is the 5 year warranty, it is always nice to see a company stand behind its products.
"XFX is targeting serious gamers and hardware enthusiasts with its new XTR Series of PSU. XFX suggest other power supplies do not always deliver, "The Wattage you see isn’t always the wattage you get." We will certainly find out if that is true with the XTR 850W PSU delivers the power and efficiency it promises in its marketing."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 18, 2015 - 01:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: azza, zen 8100
AZZA opted to skip the flashy exterior so common on cases today in the Zen 8100. The case is 21.6x8.7x22.6" which allows you to fit in even E-ATX boards and gives you plenty of space for installing large coolers and GPUs. The storage area has a separate door, an interesting addition, with space for four 5.25" drives as well as up to eight 3.5/2.5" drives not counting two more on the back. Two of those bays are hot-swapable, if for some reason you desire to use the feature. Overclockers Club would have liked to see this case support 240mm radiators but the configuration will not make that an option. Apart from that one missing feature they give this case a top rating, it is worth looking at if you need a larger sized case in the near future.
"Onwards! Alright, it's not often I don't have much on the negative side to say. AZZA has a few minor flaws for an overall decent chassis, one of which is the fans. Having fans with a fixed speed is great for some quiet operations, but it doesn't help with a loaded case, as only so much unwanted hot air can be pushed out. An easy fix for AZZA would be to have them as 3-pin fans instead of being powered by 4-pin Molex cable."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Corsair Carbide Quiet 600Q @ eTeknix
- Corsair Carbide Clear 600C @ Benchmark Reviews
- Corsair Carbide 600C Inverted Case Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Aerocool Aero 800 @ Kitguru
- NZXT H440 New Edition @ Kitguru
- ID-Cooling Frostflow 240L AIO Water Cooler @ eTeknix
- NZXT Hue+ LED Lighting Controller Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Be Quiet! Shadow Rock LP CPU Cooler Review @ NikKTech
- Reeven Ouranos @ techPowerUp
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 16, 2015 - 07:01 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: MSI Die Guard, MSI CPU Guard, msi
Personally, I am running a Haswell CPU (“Devil's Canyon”). I don't have any experience with building Skylake-based systems. A few of my coworkers at PC Perspective do, though. They seem to think that the issue is a bit out-of-proportion, except maybe in situations where a PC with a large CPU cooler needs to be transported. Also, Morry has used a similar product, the MSI Die Guard, with his delidding project for QuakeCon 2014, and it failed to prevent his die from cracking. Granted, protecting a bare die is much different from bracing a CPU that still has its heatspreader.
Image Credit: MSI
Those two issues should be kept in mind, though. We're skeptical of the problem in general and, even then, the one time that we used a similar product, it didn't (entirely) do what it was supposed to. Again, none of these situations involved me, personally.
Image Credit: MSI
But now onto the announcement. MSI is releasing the CPU Guard 1151 for new Skylake-based processors. It also works as a “die guard” too, so if you intend on popping the headspreader off, you don't need to choose between two parts. This supposedly works in either scenario. It clamps the processor into the socket, although I can't see how it would do much more than an 1151 socket (and its clamp) itself. MSI did use it during an overclocking competition though, on a delidded Skylake, so there's that.
No pricing or availability are yet available. It could be something to look out for, especially if you haven't installed your processor yet. If you have, you would then need to think about the effort to undo whatever you already have to install this. It's up to you.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 11, 2015 - 12:52 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: lepa, EXllusion 240, AIO, water cooler
Similar to the Raijintek Triton AIO cooler that [H]ard|OCP recently reviewed, the LEPA EXllusion 240 watercooler allows you to open up the loop to add colour to your cooling fluid or even replace it with one of your choice should you so desire. This AIO uses a 240mm radiator and a pair of 120mm fans and comes with red, green and blue dyes for your coolant, though not the yellow advertised on the box. The cooler performed decently in their tests, the problem they found with this cooler was the $120 price tag, which is noticeably higher than the competition. Read the full review for performance details right here.
"LEPA and its new EXllusion 240 All-In-One CPU cooler touts 400 watts of cooling ability, a patented copper cooling plate, a larger volume of liquid in the block itself, and a "silent" pump, all with a refillable design. Overall it has the look of a quality built AIO, but is the EXllusion worth 120 of your hard earned dollars?"
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Enermax ETS-T40Fit CPU Cooler Review: A Twist on a Classic @ Modders-Inc
- Air Cooler Challenge – 7 Way Round-Up @ Kitguru
- Cooltek Skall @ techPowerUp
- Phanteks Enthoo Evolv Galaxy Silver @ Benchmark Reviews
- BitFenix Nova Mid-Tower @ eTeknix
- Corsair Carbide 600C Review @ OCC
- Corsair Carbide Series 600C @ Legion Hardware
- Corsair Carbide 600C @ Kitguru
Introduction and First Impressions
Antec’s P-series enclosures have been around for quite a while, and have been known as quiet, stylish cases for a premium build. It had been quite a while since the last entry in the series as the previous model, the P280, which received our Gold Award when Ryan reviewed it way back in 2011, and this current version hit the market in January of 2015. Needless to say, Antec’s Performance enclosures have some staying power. So how does this latest entry stack up?
The new P380 carries an MSRP of $229.95, placing it in the higher end of the premium enclosure market. While it can certainly be found for less (around $140 currently on Amazon) the bar is still set pretty high when the price exceeds $100, though the P380 is in a different world than Antec's Signature S10 enclosure, which launched at a mind-boggling $499 (it has since come down considerably). With the highly competitive enclosure market offering a number of spacious and quiet options, the P380 will need to differentiate to succeed.
“When only the best can satisfy your needs, the P380 is the answer. Known for its minimalistic design, the Performance series focuses on delivering the perfect balance between performance and Quiet-Computing. Whether you’re designing your ultimate dream PC or, just creating a monster file server, the P380 should be the choice, without hesitation.”
Antec is obviously confident about this newest P-series enclosure and I’ll be putting it to the test using a new, more stringent enclosure review process. We'll take a look at the case inside and out, and then see how it performs with a gaming build using both a closed-loop liquid CPU cooler, and a conventional air CPU cooler to see how the case airflow affects warm components.