This was a super fun build but as most MicroATX builds also a bit of a challenge. I was originally going to just buy something like this from XoticPC and have it built for me but I wasn't too impressed with their turn around times for something so expensive so I used the parts I pre-selected from their website for inspiration towards my own build!
Xigmatek Aquila (nVidia Edition): I immediately liked this case as I wanted something with handles and also in a relatively small form factor. Most other cases with the same layout do not come with handles. The nVidia version is very strange and is a give/take kind of upgrade, I wouldn't recommend the nVidia version unless you plan on using really small video cards/parts....
Pros: Cool design, mostly easy to work with even as a mATX case. Fits full sized graphics cards, radiators, etc. Easy to take apart, unscrew handles/etc when needed.
Cons: 2.5 inch drive bay only supports old slim version 2.5 ssd style, not the new Intel NVMe SSDs with thicker heatsink. 3.5 inch drive bay somewhat needlessly limits room for longer PSU. Screws don't go in seamlessly.
nVidia Version: There's nothing too special about this version except that it comes with two green magnetic LEDs and a big Geforce GTX sign that lights up on the side panel window. The sign can get in the way of a graphics card or water cooler radiator mounted on the roof. It also has a weird way of connecting, I managed to put it on the other side panel of the case but it was a huge hassle.
I also removed the 3.5 inch HDD bay and would suggest sawing through the back of the piece where the PSU goes to have an easier time with PSU cable management.
3dMark Results: http://www.3dmark.com/fs/7541903
CrystalDiskMark 5.1.2 x64 (C) 2007-2016 hiyohiyo Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
- MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
- KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes
Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 2556.739 MB/s Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 1205.598 MB/s Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 854.760 MB/s [208681.6 IOPS] Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 731.178 MB/s [178510.3 IOPS] Sequential Read (T= 1) : 1214.812 MB/s Sequential Write (T= 1) : 1176.612 MB/s Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 41.508 MB/s [ 10133.8 IOPS] Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 306.419 MB/s [ 74809.3 IOPS]
Test : 1024 MiB [C: 8.7% (96.9/1117.3 GiB)] (x5) [Interval=5 sec] Date : 2016/02/13 11:29:40 OS : Windows 10 Professional [10.0 Build 10586] (x64)
For the future: A microATX case with big parts isn't easy to build, overlooked a potential problem with the m.2 to u.2 adapter and the PCIe 16x slot use instead of the 8x slot currently being used for the graphics card. Luckily the Asus adapter (instead of the gigabyte one currently in use) seems to be much lower profile and I'm hoping it'll be able to fit the u.2 cable with the graphics card overhead. Moving the graphics card to the 16x slot, besides potentially not allowing use of the m.2 slot for adapter purposes, will also conflict with the current radiator attached to the roof. I will have to move it to where the stock case fan exhaust is at the back and stick two regular fans on the roof instead.
This thing is huge, keep that in mind if using for an mATX build. Seems to be cooling nicely though was only able to get a 45x ratio on i7-6700k instead of 46x.
Pretty good board, just be careful with the PCIe slots and m.2 slots being so close together. The outside PCIe slot is 8x, not 16x.
No issues, overclocked with XMP profile.
Best there is, but expensive. Able to hit higher OC as a first time OCer with just basic air cooling than most other 980 ti cards.
Nice looking but quirky case. A lot of pros and cons respectively.
Getting the job done and with a relatively small form factor to fit into mATX cases.
Wireless Network Adapter
Very fast Wifi.
Expensive and also a little quirky.