Description

I wasn't planning on building a new PC, but I spotted this case while checking Black Friday deals. From what I know, this is the smallest conventional case that can support current gaming demands. Well, that part was debatable. It was the forum naysayers calling this case "stupid, impracticable and useless" that sold me on it. How could I refuse the challenge? And the first compact GTX 970 was just released? I'm going to make this work (and without cutting corners). Check out my Imgur album for more info on the challenges and modifications made to get this done: http://imgur.com/a/3I5wv

Please ask me questions! I'd love to talk :)

Comments

  • 59 months ago
  • 10 points

A ruler, an iPhone but no banana for scale? Now I will never see its true size...

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

HOLY BALLS THAT IS SMALL. Thanks...now I know what to build for a future HTPC/PC console.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

I will deliver, just give me a little time...

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  • 59 months ago
  • 4 points

Beast is such a taboo word on here cause it has been overused so much but your tiny little build is so badass that I think mini beast is a very accurate description of what you have here sir. Well done. "You are now free to game about the country!"

  • 59 months ago
  • 3 points

How is it taboo if everyone uses it?

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

I think he just means it's overused and that if you use it you might not get as much respect :p

  • 59 months ago
  • 3 points

Good point. Renaming it the 360 Swagger Reker

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

XD

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Woohoo! I had to name it quickly for the post, but I am open to suggestions for a new name.

  • 59 months ago
  • 4 points

My Little PC? The Uber Kitten? Whopper Jr.? PC Mustard rice? yeah..retarded names...

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  • 59 months ago
  • 3 points

Bring that thing to a LAN party, and they'll have rainbow mouths... +1

  • 54 months ago
  • 1 point

Finally got to bring it to a LAN! It attracted a lot of attention... haha

  • 59 months ago
  • 3 points

Fantastic job Sir. Great job in fitting the optical drive in there. I know most people leave it out completely nowadays even in Full sized builds. But you've manged to fit it into this case. Well done.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks! I was tempted to put the hard drive up there instead and call it a day, but I made it work.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice build, well done to get everything to fit and a good balance between power and functionality

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Absolutely fantastic build. Grab a tenkeyless keyboard and a mouse, bring it to a friends house, plug it into their TV and you're good to go. I love these tiny little builds.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice build. Case is a little large though. ;)

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Haha

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Honestly, there are smaller cases that can handle the same level of hardware. Not that this case is large by any means though. :)

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

I didn't mean to sounds like I was self-proclaiming a title or anything, but I truly had not seen a smaller case (except for the NCASE M1 I learned of this morning, which has the PC-TU100 beat by millimeters). Do you have any examples of smaller builds with competitive specs?

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

this one is not in production yet but comparing it to the lian li tu100 170 mm (W) x 277 mm (H) x 252 mm (D), 11.86 liters

the A4 seems very promising at only 6.6 liters, almost half size 110mm x 196mm x 306mm, 6,6L

http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1799326

  • 54 months ago
  • 1 point

It's actually quite easy since the EVGA Hadron Air is smaller and has much bigger CPU cooler clearance and video card length space. The appeal of the TU-100 is the handle, which makes it suitable as carryon luggage or just generally more convenient if it will be transported often.

  • 54 months ago
  • 1 point

The EVGA Hadron Air is definitely not smaller (6.30" x 10.79" x 9.49" vs 6.6" x 12" x 12.1"), but I'm really digging the airflow that it has built in. And it can support a full graphics card. Really nice!

  • 59 months ago
  • 0 points

That is one of them that I know of. Also the silverstone RVZ01 / ML07 in actual overall internal space, but is longer/wider/skinnier due to the video card being on a riser card.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Absolutely love this build. Contemplated going with that case and cooler but wasn't sure of the restricted airflow but man your modding is perfect. Nice job.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

OMG i have the same ruler as you!

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Ruler buddies!

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  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

is that thing a case, or a briefCASE :D

  • 49 months ago
  • 2 points

Excellent build. My favorite photo is actually the one with the NZXT Vulcan in the background. The Vulcan is my favorite case of all time. Too bad its not made anymore.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks. Yeah, I still love that case. Small, good handle, huge side fan.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow, very unique case, I like it though +1

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

that's awesome man. it's like a little suitcase! Would be awesome bringing this out while you're traveling through conventions or just for LANS and watching people's jawdrop when they see it's running an i7/GTX970 lol! Cool autobots decal on the front too, where can i get something like that?

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

My mom got it for me when she was out of town in a random gift shop, but I'm sure they're all over ebay. Just look for Decepticon Plastic Badge or Sticker.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Is that an autobot?

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

It's a Decepticon (I also have the Autobot one somewhere)

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

I thought so

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

that small 970 so adorable

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow! now THAT'S amazing! +1 How are your temps on that mini 970?

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

30 idle and 50-60 gaming. I'm really impressed with it. The added bottom fan helps tremendously.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice! Those are about the same temps im getting with my gigantic 780 Ti... Have you attempted overclocking it yet? (or is that pushing the limit?)

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

I have not. I definitely could, but I don't see the need. Maybe when I see an ounce of lag on something in the distant future, I'll consider it :)

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm assuming fan is an intake. I'm on mobile and can't really tell.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Yes, both the front and bottom fans are intakes. I could put a very small outtake fan on the back of the case, but I don't think it's necessary.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm thinking of doing two fans in the bottom, like so: http://imgur.com/zirLnk2

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

its not the smallest actually, the Ncase is the smallest

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

hows the cable management on that thing?

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Q. Why only DDR3-1600? Or was that to be able to get the 1 TB SSD? Otherwise, WOW!

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Personally, I don't think you need anything above DDR3-1600 in a regular, non-APU build. It doesn't improve anything very much at all.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Ah, good to know. I'm not very familiar with RAM speeds and the difference they make.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Fast ram is best for APU's because unlike a GPU, it does not have dedicated VRAM. 1600 is completely fine for what you use it for.

ECC is also best for workstations or server PC's that can't crash or fail.

Just some RAM info

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Appreciate the info

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

There's no need to go for anything above 1600 or maybe 1866 MHz RAM on a non-APU system. Linus does a great video explaining this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWgzA2C61z4

Definitely something you should watch

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

RAM is probably the component I know least about. Darn! You're making me want to return these sticks and upgrade.

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

Well... if I had that 4790K, I'd probably want to try for as much memory bandwidth as I could get and maybe go with a 480 or 512 GB SSD but I'm greedy. The extra heat you might dump into that case may not be worth what extra performance you could squeeze out. Then there's the fact you got all that in there in the first place; kudos to your planning and building skills!

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the info!

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

There's no need to go for anything above 1600 or maybe 1866 MHz RAM on a non-APU system. Linus does a great video explaining this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWgzA2C61z4

Definitely something you should watch

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

OMG, I have those same speakers! where are the other 2? +1

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build! Are you planning to OC your i7 sometime? I just ordered an i7-4790K, and the NH-L9i, and I'm worried I won't be able to do even a small overclock ;_;.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Na, I don't plan on it. To be honest, I haven't really ever tried overclocking because I never needed to.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Alright, just checking. I was only curious cause you bought a K series chip :p

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, the price difference is so miniscule that I buy the K chips just in case I ever decide to try OC'ing.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

That's a good idea. Once I finish my PC-Q30 build next week, I'm afraid I may have to take the "Smallest Current Gaming Build" title from you :p

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

how much room between the bottom and the GPU? just wondering if a NF-12 would fit there

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

It won't, or else I would have gotten it! Haha. There's only room for a half inch fan. The NF-12 is a full inch - it might fit, but it would be pushing the GPU. Bad idea. The one I got isn't half bad.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

thanks for the info!

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

That's awesome man! Also I've got a few questions: As listed earlier here would a nf-12 fit in there? That would be sweet. What's the diameter of the hole you drilled? Couldn't you better have used Crucial Ballistix Tactical ram? (low profile better latencies) Did you just used the sfx's psu cables or did you used others? And my last question: I've seen the temps in the system, is it warming up the room where it is standing and how is the noise production?

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points
  1. No, the NF-12 won't fit below the GPU. It's 1 inch tall, and only a half inch fan will fit. 2. 120mm hole, same size as the fan. 3. Yeah, I wish I did more research on RAM. The stuff I got is low profile enough, though. 4. I bought short/slim PSU cables. They're the last item on my list at the top. They're awesome. If you're building with this case, definitely a must-buy. 5. I've only played WoW on max settings so far (1080p), but I haven't felt the case heat up or get noisy yet. Very happy with the temps and sound. Haven't seen the CPU or GPU touch 70C yet.
  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

Can you run some benchmarks, I have the same case with a 4690s and I'm looking at upgrading to the mITX 970 this month. I want to know what that card is capable of. I was able to fit a Corsair H55 in that case by swapping the front fan for the corsair and just adding the rubber grommets to it. You have to install it sideways though so it won't interfere with the RAM and stuff, but it would help if you want to overclock that 4790k.

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

Did that case come with the hole in the bottom for the extra fan? Is that normal?

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

No, I cut it. Dude! Look at the Imgur album

  • 58 months ago
  • 2 points

yeah, i did look at it, and i thought you did, but it looked so good i thought it might've just come like that! lol.. anyway, how did you cut it? really good idea..and i can't believe cases don't come like that especially with the video card being so closed in there..

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

No worries. I actually have a confession to make - I didn't cut it myself. My mom works with a metal guy who made the cut look easy. He used one of these. The case is aluminum, so it's super easy to cut. I agree, this case would be perfect if they just made a few minor changes come standard.

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

cool i was gonna ask how now i know

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

Just built a rig like this with the Zotac. I regret not having the flat cables

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

Never too late to get 'em

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

This is true.

I am going to also cut the hole at the bottom for airflow like you did. I really like the SSD mount on the panel there, really slick idea.

  • 58 months ago
  • 1 point

such a clean cut out you did at the bottom what tool did you use

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build. Love that case. We had the same idea. Silverston SG05 is only 12 cubic inches bigger. but 1) Supports full size 10.5 inch 970 2) Dual 120mm fans + watercooler Radiator 3) 3 EVO's 840 in Raid 0 4) 1 2.5 2tb HD 5) Over clockable to what ever your i7 will support

(no optical though)

http://pcpartpicker.com/b/8ND8TW

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Sweet build, and your temp's look good too.

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I love it!

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

Very nice build. I'm going for a setup very similar to this but I'll have 2 fan cut outs top AND bottom (I'm very paranoid with the airflow). I noticed you mounted your ssd on the side panel which is a clever move. Do you think there is enough space to mount a 3.5" HDD on there instead? I don't feel like making my current storage unit external or selling it lol.

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm not sure it will work, friend. There is not enough space in between the side and the other components unless you can squeeze it in between the PSU and the front fan. But check it out. Barely 3.5" in between, and a 3.5 HDD is 4" wide.

  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

Maybe if I use a slim fan in the front it might work. Wouldn't want to give up my 3TB :3 my only other option is to make it external. Thanks a lot for the help friend, really appreciate it. Can't wait to use this case :D.

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

Just wondering, but where did you get the fan grills? I'm planning on getting a 3 fanned gtx 980 so I'll probably put three holes in the bottom, no fans though. That way the gpu has a way to suck in air. Should I put slim fans in there? Also is it possible to have a 25mm fan on the cpu cooler instead of the stock one?

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

Mulit fan GPUs are too big, I'll just do one hole, but is the fan necessary?

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

Here's the grill I bought. And the aftermarket cpu fan I used is, no joke, literally the only fan I could find that will fit besides the stock one. Had to return the first one I tried.

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

First off, strong work. Second did you have to make any mods to the wiring for powering the drives and the fans? Third had you tried the gpu prior to cutting? If so how were the temps? Fourth in your opinion would there be power and room for a second ssd?

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

1- Thanks!
2- No mods, but I highly recommend going with a little modular Silverstone and then getting their slim wires that are on my items list. They are 100% essential to make airflow in this thing work. And twisty ties.
3- I did not, actually. I knew I wanted to make the cut before I even received parts, though.
4- Power? Yes. Space? The only possibility I can see is if you can sacrifice your slim optical drive. That spot will work great for a SSD.

  • 55 months ago
  • 1 point

Would you mind explaining how you cut a hole on the bottom and attached the silverstone fan grille to the case and then attached the fan? Did you need any nuts to hold down the fan to the fan grille??

I am looking to make the same case mod as you so please reply :D Would you also mind posting your initial temps before the fan mod vs after the case mod?

  • 55 months ago
  • 1 point

I didn't cut the hole myself, I knew someone with a large circular drill that could make the cut. And then yeah, it's just secured with little screws and washers. I didn't test temps prior to the hole, so I can't answer that. Sorry!

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Why did you have to cut the case? I'm interested in doing something like this, but wanted to know if you have to mod it.

  • 52 months ago
  • 2 points

I wanted a fan underneath the GPU to give it more airflow, so I made a new hole underneath the case.

  • 50 months ago
  • 1 point

If you're not oc'ing why use the Z97 and not the H97? Also how's the WiFi working out for you so far? Any issues? Is the WiFi an external add on, I heard it's difficult to connect, is this true? Thanks for sharing your build, it's awesome. I think I'll get it. Sorry in advance if somebody asked these questions, I read most of the comments I think and didn't see them asked. Take care.

  • 50 months ago
  • 2 points

I'm glad you enjoyed the build! Neither of your questions have been asked.

I actually just finished switching my Noctua fan with Corsair H60 water cooling tonight (it's an insanely tight fit). I'm not overclocking right now, but I just like having the option. I am on a LAN connection, so I can't give a good review of the WIFI. It comes with external antennas that you plug into the back, but you could upgrade the antenna separately if you wanted. Let me know if any more questions come up. I'm going to try to add my few little updates to this build page soon.

  • 50 months ago
  • 1 point

2 more questions, so you think it's a smart move to add the water cooling and I bought the GTX 970 Overclocked Mini Itx, you think the heat off the gpu will be a problem? Is your card oc'd?

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

any updates?

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry for my super late reply... I got it in! Super tight squeeze, but it's running like a champ: http://imgur.com/p1bI40d

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you for the response. Sorry for my late response. I'm a bit stuck on 3 things, (1) which Corsair Water Cooler you used [was it the H60], did you keep the 140mm fan or did you change that too AND (2) How did you supply power to the fan mounted at the bottom of the case AND (3) did you modify the case feet, I can't find any feet that are similar diameter, but taller (any luck?) - thank you for your help!!! Waiting your reply.

  • 46 months ago
  • 2 points

(1) Yes, I am using an H60. I removed the front fan and replaced it with the H60's fan and radiator grill.
(2) It's running off my MOBO's case fan pins.
(3) Pretty sure these are what I bought and replaced the case feet with. Another tight fit!

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

hey one more question please, did you have to remove any rivets to get the original case fan off?

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Nope. My fan had a rubber twist-on mount. I just unscrewed the rubber mounting pad from the stock fan and put it onto the radiator fan.

  • 50 months ago
  • 1 point

What did you use to cut the hole in the bottom of the case?

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey! Don't know if you check this site at all recently, but my friend and I are about to build in this case (TU100A, not B), and I was just wondering how you made the bottom 120mm fan mount. I wouldn't mind cutting into it, but this won't be my computer, it'd be my friend's. I would love to know how so that I could try to convince him on it. Would a standard case fan fit in the bottom with a R9 Nano or did you use a low-profile fan (sorry, haven't used the prolimatech fan before). I'm sure the fan bracket would be an easy find, but getting the hole cut is something i've never done before. Hope to hear from you soon!

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm not very familiar with the R9 nano. But just from googling it, I don't think it will give room for a standard case fan. Just buy a slim one and a fan grill - they're like 7 bucks on Amazon. As far as cutting the hole, I took it to a metal shop and asked them to cut a 120mm hole. They used a circular drill head.

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

ah a metal shop great! Ya it's a pain trying to find a good low-profile fan. Was the fan you used touching the graphics card or did it have any space between the card and the fan?

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

It's a super tight fit. Once the graphics card is secured, I can barely fit my pinkie finger between them. Low profile fans work fine, but they're a little louder than standard sized ones. Not really much of a choice, though!

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

just out of interest, do you think it would take much modding to fit a FlexATX PSU in there? would save a lot of vital space in the system, although i'm not sure it would work well given there is already a cutout for SFX PSUs.

Also, since we're talking about this, an absolute dream would be to put the HDPLEX 240W fanless PSU with a AC-DC converting adapter either outside the case, or crammed in sowmwhere wherever the extra space manifests... do you think that's possible??

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Not bad.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Last August 2015, after seeing this exact build here from Cbuchhauser I decided to build it for my daughter's Christmas present. TLDR; nothing but trouble ever since. Literally 9 months of non-stop drama. At first it was the CPU overheating [Intel Xeon 1231v3], which is super strange b/c its known to run cooler than most other cpus, so I talked to Cbuchhauser and he suggested an H60 water cooler. So I did that... now, the GPU was overheating hitting 83C-85C under normal game play load. He suggested drilling a hole in the bottom of the case and using it as an intake fan. I did that... the gpu went off the charts actually blackscreening my system. So, the radiator for the H60 water block is placed in front of the FRONTPANEL intake fan... so, hot air is actually getting blown back into the case, where the bottom fan is pushing air into the case, but first passing over the hot GPU with nowhere for the air to go, so the mobo gets hotter than usual, including RAM. Unfortunately, the rear of the case is taken up by the PSU and that fan is pretty small, it's a SFX modular form that can sit on the palm of your hand. This is a hotbox. I have never been able to use the PC without the side panel off.

My daughter plays MineCraft with SUES Shadderspacks, Planetside2, Eve Online, DC Universe Online, she makes "Let's Play" videos using Adobe Creative Cloud etc., so, she really needs something that can stand a torture test. For some reason, playing any of those games in full screen mode kills the GPU. It's loud. So, imagine everytime you play a game or look at a HD video the fan goes to 80-90%... it's loud, hot and a pain in my @$$. I hate this build with a passion. This would've been maybe my 50th build, so I'm not entirely new to the DIY build scene. If you're planning on taxing your system with high performance settings while playing games, don't use this case. If you're ok with windowed mode, average settings then go for it. My build includes the ASUS VG248QE 144hz monitor also. Why buy all this hardware if you can't use it, right? I'm building 2 new pc's. I plan on using the Corsair 380T mini-itx and either the ASUS GTX 970 oc mini or the R Nano. I have all pics and videos, will post my experience later. Hope this helps somebody. Cbuchhauser was awesome to me, he really helped where he could - I'm curious, I'd love to see his system specs under load, video it for like 10 minutes with the case closed. Thank you Cbuchhauser for all your help.

  • 43 months ago
  • 2 points

Damn, sorry to hear about all the trouble this build has given you! I will admit that my machine is on the louder side (a non-issue since I wear headphones), but I've been lucky not to run into any real problems. Hopefully a different case will treat your components better :) and I'll consider doing a quick video of my machine in action. I appreciate the write up.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Another thing I realized is that the Gigabyte GTX 970 OC mini-itx actually sits with no vent towards the rear, it vents the hot air towards the front of the case - basically, the mobo and water-cooling radiator physically block off the front lower GPU vent area fairly well, so the GPU hot air has nowhere really to go. I thought about trying the R9 Nano or the Asus Gtx 970 mini-itx b/c they have the venting positioned correctly "out the back", doh. lol.

I love the case. I will keep it for myself and mess about with it, possibly adding a water cooled GPU to the top of the case with the radiator actually on top. More drilling, which I also love so no worries - you have been amazing support and I want you to know I appreciate your level of professionalism and attention when you're not being paid anything... thank you.

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