Couple of builds using the Antec ISK310-150
#1
Just wanted to share with you guys the two HTPCs I've built with this case, not a particularly fun case to work with due to constraints like the stupid metal cage over the motherboard area and the fact that the PSU runs HOT due to lack of space. Built the i3-3220 two years ago, so the hardware is sort of old. You may also notice some of the text doesn't make sense, or follow right - I took the lazy way out and combined a bunch of posts together LOL.

You can also see the progression and the advances I made building in the case a second time, my first attempt looks so...hacked together.

Some things common to both builds:

1) Removed as much restriction as possible in the power supply - this involved removing any possible obstruction by cutting away the stock vents

2) Replace all stock fans (including the one in the power supply) and install a second auxiliary fan in the fan holder. The first build used a trio of Young Years (which are a rebadge of Yate Loons) and the second one used Gelid Silent 8's since I couldn't find the Young Years anymore.

3) Undervolt all fans. The first one used a trio of 5V Molex adapters I modified, so every single fan (including the one in the power supply) received 5V - I won't recommend this anymore since on high loads the fans won't ramp up anymore (initially the idea was to minimize tonality differences caused by different fan RPMs, and also due to the lack of fan control on the Intel board). Second time around, we ended up getting an ASRock board which has decent fan control, so we used the onboard motherboard headers with an addition of a Noctua (or any brand really) Y-cable splitter since ASRock only included one chassis header since it was their budget board.

IMHO, this case really needs to be stood up since ventilation isn't the greatest and any bit helps (including natural convection). However, the earlier build has been in an enclosed cabinet with barely any fresh air intake for almost 2 years now with no ill effects.

Core i3-3220 Wrote:Really, just a PITA case to work in. You may notice I don't actually have a motherboard in it yet....the Intel H67 board has been backordered for several weeks now -.-

Quote:-Intel i3 3220
-Intel DH67CFB3
-8GB Corsair XMS3 2 x 4GB DDR3 1600MHz
-OCZ Vertex 3 120GB SSD
-Antec ISK310-150W
-Scythe Kozuti
-Some random Teac DVD Rom

Originally I was going to consider the Wesena ITX2/Streacom FC1, hence the Scythe Kozuti (as I wanted an optical drive, which prevented me from using a bigger sink like the Big Shuriken), but then realized that the case, plus the PicoPSU would've cost a fortune (though not as much as the FC5 I recently did a build on). Spent some time looking and finally settled on the Antec, which I admit does look nice, primarily due to the simple front which has absolutely no logos.

Per advice from other users, I opted to replace all the fans inside the case, including the PSU fan (which falls prey to an overly sensitive load sensor in the PSU), with Yate Loon's (yes, I'm aware they say 'Young Year', and that the model number printed on the label corresponds to a sleeve bearing model, instead of the 'Ball Bearing' claim printed below the brand) as they were the best ones I could find locally at a decent price (~$7 plus tax). I went and cut out the grill on the PSU as well, and will be creating a duct that will seal the exhaust fans to the exterior shell (there's around half an inch of dead space between the exhaust grill on the shell, and the actual fans which are mounted inside the chassis). All three fans will be undervolted externally via a 5V Molex adapters (I switched the Molex pins around on the PSU connector, the black Molex connector you see in the pictures is for the power LEDs, and yes they are designed for 5V so everything works out).

Cable-wise, everything is sort of tight, but not the worst I've seen. I don't know how Puget Systems and other review sites could make the case interior look so messy, as it really isn't that bad. A few zip ties here and there works wonders (I have not finalized the locations for the ties, will have to wait until I get the motherboard in before I can button everything up, for now it is just a mockup). I removed the now-useless bracket for the three speed controller on the Antec Tricool and plan to route the USB 3.0 header pass through cable to the back I/O panel, as my board doesn't have a USB 3.0 header. Should I keep the front panel USB connections 2.0 or 3.0?

Finally, the completed product. Good thing I bought a 1000 pack of zip ties, the smaller the case, the more zip ties I have to use in order to mock up where the cables go, and try different layouts. I honestly believe this is the best anyone can do without cutting away part of the ODD/HD brace.

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Sorry for the massive amount of pictures! Some closing notes:

-The PSU does get a little warm, but I attribute that mainly to how there's very little room inside the PSU - hell, the heatsinks nearly touch the top! Plus the fact that 1/3rd of the exhaust fan is blocked by the top cover and connecting it to a 6V adapter doesn't really help things. However, I don't think my draw is even at a fifth of it's rated specs, especially with the processor power management enabled in the power options of Windows. Will keep an eye on it however. I should've left the stock fan on and see how loud that was when coupled to my setup, but alas, I went ahead and quite literally sealed it in with zip ties everywhere LOL.

-The Scythe Kozuti is QUIET. Like holy crap quiet. Core Temp reports temperatures of around 24C at idle, which is astounding! I have almost an identical setup in my office PC, and that idles at mid 30's with the stock Intel heatsink.

-The board works flawlessly, I only wished it had UEFI, as I'm spoiled by my Asus Gene-Z. Haven't tried undervolting it yet, but for a HTPC, the BIOS settings are plenty. In addition, there's no USB 3.0 header on the board itself, but as this board came out almost 2 years ago, I really can't fault Intel for it. I will have to make do with USB 2.0 front panel connectors, or buy a passthrough dongle to the I/O panel and plug the header cable directly into the rear USB 3.0 ports.

-I honestly didn't think the Yate Loon's/Young Year's would sound any good, but at 5V, I think I can live with the barely audible whoosh of air. Barely any bearing noise at all, compared to the stock PSU fan and the Antec TriCool. And they start reliably at 5V as well! Alas, without hooking up a resistor/rheostat to it, I will not know the lowest operating/startup voltage. They push a significant amount of air for a 80mm fan.

-The chassis itself is built like a tank. I have seen some examples where the user cut away half of the ODD tray, but IMO, unless you find another way to brace the case,. this isn't a particularly good idea as the case relies on this brace to tie in the front and back panels. The vents on the removable top cover could use a bit of resizing however. My last few photos show how a third of the fans were cut off simply because the vents weren't big enough. I may enlarge the vents and put traditional wire grills one, but that'd ruin the overall look of the case.

Other than those points, I think this build went pretty straight forward. I must admit, I spent the bulk of my time routing cables, but honestly, it could be worse. There is actually quite a bit of space in the nooks and crannies, like the half inch of dead space right above the PSU and below the ODD tray, or in between the memory sticks and the PSU (where my 24 opin cable is routed through). I do think this case is best without a discrete graphics card as I worry that the card will block too much of the intakes, thus raising interior temperatures and increasing the noise.

I ran the Windows Experience Index for laughs and giggles, and to my dismay, the IGPU (Intel HD2500) only gave me a 4.9 LOL. On the other hand, that 4.9 is enough to let my watch full HD movies without stuttering, so it's GTG in my books.

Oh one last thing, like the other Antec cases with a lit ring around the power button (SOLO, etc), it is DAMN BRIGHT. I think I may have to sand the ring to make it less transparent, or add a resistor to the LEDs.[/quote]

Pentium G3258 Wrote:Putting together another low-budget HTPC ($300) in a case I'm quite familiar with (I have one, and it is a PAIN to work in).

Quote:-Intel Pentium G3258
-ASRock H81M-ITX
-Kingston HyperX Genesis 2 x 4GB DDR3 1600MHz
-Intel 530 120GB SSD
-Antec ISK310-150W
-Scythe Big Shuriken 2 Rev. B

Took around a day, managed to get the feisty Pentium up to 4.2GHz (I know the screen cap says 4.1GHz, this was before I tweaked some more settings). Right now it is rock stable at 1.25V VCORE and the multiplier set at 42. Overvoltage is enabled, but aside from those settings, there are really no in depth adjustments. Ram is set to XMP Profile 1.3. Probably going to start lowering VCORE and see if we could get lower temps - it's hitting 85C with the stock Intel cooler (the Scythe is on backorder):

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Onwards with the build!

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I'm kidding, that couldn't boot period. Even unlocked, 6.0 is a pipe dream lol.

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If you've seen my previous builds, most of you will know I have a thing for steel cables, and this is no different. Since I had cut down the ODD/HDD tray (original tray below) to increase the clearance for the HSF, it became slightly flimsy front to back since the original unaltered tray ran the full length of the case and tied the front to the back with screws. Decided to install a couple of steel cables to mitigate this - an unexpected bonus, they came out pretty sleek personally and just look cool.

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I knew the PSU in this particular case ran HOT so like my own HTPC I removed all possible obstructions from the intake and exhaust grills to aid in venting - even still the PSU blows out warm air, someone you'll have to put up with due to the extremely crammed compartment.

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I did end up switching all the fans including the ADDA in the power supply with some Gelid Silent 8's - mainly because they were cheap and in stock locally. They sound pretty decent and included silicone mounts as well, good deal.

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Overall, we managed to stay in budget and produce a fairly capable and sweet looking machine. Possible upgrades would be a second hard drive or an ODD - the board only has two SATA ports LOL. Oh, almost forgot about the USB3.0 front panel that's coming direct from Antec - curiously, even though this case is newer than mine, it has the older USB2.0 front panel. Since there is NO USB3.0 header on the motherboard itself, most likely we are going to run a header to dual 3.0 plugs adapter out to the external USB3.0 plugs on the I/O panel. Sacrifices...

Nothing wants to go in without a fight I found out. Installed (or rather, tried to) the Big Shuriken 2 Rev. B today, only to find out ASRock positioned the CPU socket so close to the top edge of the board that the Big Shuriken 2 hits the fans (missing around 1/4" of space). Uh Oh.

I guess lucky me, because the way the Scythe positioned the mounting locations for the Intel brackets means that I can shift the heatsink towards the top or bottom without losing contact with the heatspreader (due to the fact that the HSF base is an elongated rectangle meant for also accommodating the longer AMD sockets). I ended up using one of the LGA2011 holes and drilled an additional hole in each of the brackets in order to offset the entire heatsink (moved it about 1/2"). Ended up with an extra 1/8" of clearance - Scythe should've definitely designed the HSF asymmetrically to prevent issues like this.

Regardless, even installed it is a really tight fit, but the 15C temperature drop at full load made up for it!

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Here's the mod to the PSU:

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#2
Intel G3258 cont'd Wrote:Image

Here's the mod to the PSU:

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#3
Nice. You were able to change the multiplier on the G3258 with the H81
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Couple of builds using the Antec ISK310-1500