This version of Sprocket was an exercise in restraint...well, for me anyway.
The goal was to fit a maximized cooling loop into a CM Stacker without
Define "major", please.
In the context of this project, "major" means permanently visible holes, cuts, etc.
With the exception of the top blowhole (which Coolermaster really should have changed anyway), I wanted the case to be returnable to stock appearance/functionality.
So far, so good.
If you have never seen a Stacker case in person, trust me, it's big.
Even so I managed to cram it so full of stuff that I had to get creative with some of my component mounting in order to shoehorn everything in.
Life would be so much simpler if Windows didn't require a floppy drive to load RAID drivers....
The RAID array has finally reached it's full size...4x36GB Raptors.
A Seagate 120 GB SATA drive is for storage.
Here is a shot of the front bay of the case with all the drives in place...
...and a bench of the drives...
Frankly, I have more storage than I know what to do with, but it is very fast and snappy.
Cooling the drives is a new front bezel.
I made this from black 1/8" Plexi and it mounts 3x120mm fans which blow over the drives and into the case. The bezel also holds two Bulgin switches (reset/power) and overlays the Sunbeam fan controller so only the knobs are visible.
I'd like to replace the standard black knobs for some nice knurled silver ones, but haven't found ones I like yet.
The bezel is mounted to two pieces of angled aluminum (visible in the HDD pic) whose mounting holes are completely invisible should the case return to stock.
This is a shot of the test fit (actually, the ten millionth test fit...)...
The button head allen screws have all since been painted black to lessen the visual clutter.
I upgraded my northbridge motherboard fan from an 80mm to a 120mm. The DFI (like most nForce4 boards) suffers from terrible placement of the northbridge and can use all the help it can get. Also visible here is the access hole for the CPU socket- heatsinks/waterblocks can be swapped without motherboard removal.
The reservoir has moved to the case roof (the tophat looking thingie) and is the only permanent,visible mod to the case exterior. Should the rez be removed the leftover mounting holes accomodate a 120mm fan or grill- which Coolermaster should have incorporated to begin with.
Sprocket is up and running right now and initial results look good...mostly.
CPU temps are slightly better than the Big Typhoon HSF, but this chip has always run very cool anyway, so I didn't expect much difference.
The GPU temp has dropped a lot...the Swiftech MCW50 and the copper ramsinks are really outperforming the DangerDen NV-68 block I used before.
Sadly, the northbridge temp has remained the same.
I have replaced my previous passive sink/active mobotray fan with a Vantec Iceberg4 (all copper) and upped the backboard fan to 120mm, so why the crap results?
Turns out, the 120mm fan is dead.
I should have tested it, but I didn't.
The motherboard has to come out to replace it.
Which means just about everything else has to come out first.
Looking on the bright side, this will allow me to make some much needed improvements to my wiring, but it's still a royal pain.
The fully assembled beauty shots will have to wait till the reassembly is done...maybe tonight, but prolly tomorrow.
More to come...
Mini-stress test- Prime 95 for one hour...