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NCASE M1 - Astarael

by Exultant


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

March 6, 2017

Date Built

March 6, 2017

CPU Clock Rate

4.2 GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

31.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.417 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

10 GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

23.0° C


I gotta say that I would not recommend watercooling to anyone after how incredibly difficult it was setup a loop inside of this case, lol. The NCASE M1 is very aesthetic but working with it was seriously stress inducing--they're not kidding when they tell you to plan your build before you install anything!

The prices in the part list are what I paid for them. I did my best to buy everything during the holidays but the build was only completed this morning due to an excessive wait for custom cables through cablemod. I would not recommend cablemod for your needs--the ones they shipped were poorly assembled and not at all like they were depicted on their site. You can see in the photos how the cables twist and wind around themselves for a chaotic, messy look... and I paid over $100 for them.

I bought the Titan X Pascal in November (I was deployed) after patiently waiting for confirmed news of a 1080ti. It's a shame that I spent an extra $600 on the Titan, but I didn't want to wait... Ironically, I ended up waiting for cablemod anyway!

I will admit that despite the difficulty of working with the NCASE M1 and watercooling for the first time, I did enjoy the build and am tremendously pleased with the final result. Feel free to ask me any questions!

Part Reviews


Installed Windows 10 in less than two minutes.


It's hard to describe just how immersive and enjoyable ultrawide is... you just need to play on one to understand!

Comments Sorted by:

silly_rabbit 3 points 22 months ago

Stress inducing or not, it turned out beautiful man! Also I spotted those Sennheiser Momentums! If I may, How do you like them? I love mine (probably mostly because I got them for $189).

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks for saying it's beautiful! The total build time was nearly 15 hours due to how hard it was to thread the compression fittings. I love those cans too--but I have the Momentum 2.0 Wireless. They support Bluetooth 4.0+ so the audio quality is incredible and so is the battery life at 22 hours. Only complaint would be that they can clamp a bit too tight and aren't so comfortable for extended wear.

silly_rabbit 1 point 22 months ago

Unfortunately, I would agree with the extended wear being slightly uncomfortable even with the improved earcups on the 2.0's. I couldn't afford the wireless edition but that wasn't a problem as cords have never bothered me and the sound is still superb! Once again, love the ambitious water cooling in the M1!

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks a lot! Good thing I didn't zoom in on how damaged the fittings became after dealing with my pliers for ten hours...

FL350 1 Build 3 points 22 months ago

I'm amazed you managed to fit a custom loop with TWO rads in there! I also like your monitor choice, gotta make use of that Titan.


Exultant submitter 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

I drew heavy inspiration from another build on this site by Mcbird, along with tons of competed builds on hardforum and reddit. The goal was to have a rig last me five years or more like my 2011 build so I did my research and took time to make sure everything work well! I was going with a 1080 originally before benchmarks showed the predator really needed a titan to drive it at native resolution! :)

mshafi1001 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

+1 im curious how can you justify 2 PCs, im only asking so i can later do say it to myself when i end up doing it. lol

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

The one on the right is my old pc from 2011. I "refreshed" it this year with 3 new 4tb drives, a 1060, a new psu, and a new ssd--I have almost 8tb of media currently and rather than spend $400-600 on a NAS I spent a bit more than that to have my own NAS that can be used for guests!

mshafi1001 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

lol nice, did you have the drives in a Raid?

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

No, the internet scared me away from raid unless it's in 10, and since the elite case can only fit hdds that was out of the question. Each drive is split up into categories of content and they are speedy enough as is. Plex performs exceedingly well on my 2600k so I'm content!

mshafi1001 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Why not just sale the Elite for a case that can support more drives, Is it cuz of the tempered glass lol? Also do you like PLEX and one a scale of 1-10 how would you rate your experience with the OS?

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Plex gets a 9 and not a 10 only because it is very obnoxious trying to get it to desync wrong meta data if it misidentifies a movie. Otherwise it works well over wifi/ethernet and I like it a lot! And yes, the case looks very nice... Didn't want an ugly NAS cube on my desk.

BadDrawer 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

I really like that even though it costs 5,000 dollars, the set-up is still "minimalistic" which I love.
I just ordered my parts from Amazon, nowhere near that price, but it's a start.

What will you be using the pc for?

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago


I am big on minimalism--muted, narrow palettes and clean lines of geometry. Glad you like the look!

mijretrop 3 Builds 2 points 22 months ago

You said you wouldn't recommend watercooling after this build but I have a hunch that if you had to do it all over again you still would. :) The most challenging and frustrating parts of the build are often the most rewarding when you finally get it to work.

Bummer about the custom cables. In a tight build like this I'm guessing the only way to get them perfect would be to measure, cut and make each individual wire for each cable set so that it routes and curves exactly where you want it.

+1 for cramming all that in such a tight build. Good job!

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

I was pretty bummed too but I didn't want to wait even longer to ship the cables back for replacements. Everything still fits (obviously) but a part of me isn't happy it's not as pretty as it should have been. I read horror stories of time and effort needed to sleeve your own cables... So while you're right, doing it myself would've been best, sometimes it's better to pay someone else!

mijretrop 3 Builds 2 points 22 months ago

I sleeve my own cables, believe me, most of the horror stories are true. There is a gigantic learning curve to it that you wouldn't expect. Even now that i have my process down it would probably take me 4 or 5 hours to make a perfect cable like you would need here.

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Well I'm glad I didn't do it myself, lol.

Vreaker12 4 Builds 2 points 22 months ago

Holy cow, didn't even it's possible to watercool in an M1 case hahaha. Great job mate!

Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Browse around! There's so many amazing looking NCASE builds! Mine isn't even close to some of the builds I've seen.

Bartendalot 2 points 22 months ago

Did you consider delidding the CPU?

joshzpants 3 Builds 1 point 19 months ago

Wow I cannot believe that I haven't seen this build until now. I'm so glad I stumbled across it because dang, this is so goooood looking. Give yourself a pat on the back, you do a freaking amazing job +1

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Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks man! I was so set on a mini-itx build when I first found the A4-SFX... I had to settle for the NCASE M1 and it does look quite nice on my desk. I can't imagine how much harder it would've been if I'd tried hardline tubing!

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Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks a lot! Shame I couldn't get my hands on an A4-SFX but the NCASE is a solid silver medal.

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Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

No sir, it was on Massdrop--a special edition IKBC keyboard made of five pounds of aluminum. Cherry reds, insane rgb customization I'll never use, and feels like it will last me a lifetime.

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Exultant submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Those temps are right in line with stock 7700k temperatures. :)