Description

I wanted a compact, fast and silent build. These things contradict, but I am happy with the result :)

Video card

The video card is the 'older' Gigabyte Windforce RTX 2080 3X OC which is exactly 2 slots wide. My part list shows the non-OC variant, because the OC variant of the 2 slots version is not listed on this site.

All newer Windforce versions are approx. 2.5 slots wide, which will fit the case, but not the extra support bracket of the video card holder. I also wanted to make the distance between the case fans and video card fans as big as possible to prevent turbulence.

The 2070 Super would have been more reasonable and was my original pick, but was out of stock when ordering and after debating for so long I didn't want to wait any longer to start building ;). The only slightly more expensive 2080 Super variant didn't came in an exactly 2 slot variant. The Gigabyte Windforce was in general chosen because of good reviews regarding noise production. The even more silent MSI 2070 Super X Trio is more than 2 slots wide. Also many other RTX cards did not meet the size requirements.

I've also considered the Power Color Red Dragon 5700XT, but was hearing too much about AMD driver problems, so went for the safe option. Also the Red Dragon is quite high and most probably the extra support bracket of the gpu holder will not fit. Because it is a 2 fan model, it might not need the extra support, otherwise you'll need to create a custom solution for it.

Both video card facing case fans are on the system fan header using a fan splitter cable and pull air in from outside towards the video card.

CPU

The AMD 3700X was chosen because it was the fastest CPU with only 65W TDP. I've disabled core performance boost (CPB), because it caused cores to boost and temperatures to go up all the time, even when doing nothing (Windows desktop). The CPU is fast enough for my use without it, also maybe this will be fixed with a future BIOS update. Update: After updating to BIOS version F10, I've turned on CPB again. It is clocking cores all the time to 4.4 Ghz (without CPB the max. frequency is 3.6Ghz), but by setting the silent CPU profile and an interval of 0, the PC stays silent in idle. My theory is when the interval was higher (3), it doesn't ramp up the fans soon enough and they overshoot.

CPU cooler

I use the Noctua cpu cooler with 2 fans. I flipped the bottom fan upside down (from its factory position), so the top case fan pulls air in from outside and pushes it towards the heat sink and the bottom fan pulls air from the heat sink. Both fans are on the cpu fan header using a splitter cable. The top fan is mounted to the case lid and still doesn't touch the heat sink (1 / 2 mm distance?). The heat pipes face the back of the mainboard. The Noctua cpu cooler comes with thermal paste, so you don't need to order that separately. Note: First remove the bottom cpu fan, then mount the heat sink to the mainboard/cpu, then place it back upside down, because the heat sink screws are not accessible when the fan is mounted upside down.

Case fans

I've heard good things about Noctua and already use their CPU cooler and fan. When the black version of the NF A12x15 came out I immediately ordered 3 of them.

My Noctua case fans came without screws. They are listed as part of the package contents. After reporting this to Noctua they immediately sent me the screws free of charge. Great service! Noctua told me the screws should be included and a packaging error was made with only one box of 40 fans.

I've also considered the Prolimatech Ultra sleek Vortex 12 fans, but while they looked good on paper, I didn't like the fan noise I heard in the CoolingTechnique review. The thing with fan noise it is not only the sound level, but also the type of sound they make that matters and Noctua especially does that part right. Apart from noise, the Noctuas also performed better in the CoolingTechnique tests.

Chipset fan

When set to the silent profile, the chipset fan is only audible under heavy load. It makes a bit of a high anonying wirr, but this is masked mostly by the other fans and normal ambient noise and is almost inaudible at some distance. It could be replaced with a small Noctua fan, because it has an accessible connector. You will however need to use a non-standard plug / converter, but the pinout is described in the mainboard manual. The fan didn't distract me so far, so I most probably keep it stock for now.

Memory

XMP Auto detect didn't work stable. After a cold boot, the BIOS was reset to safe defaults again. I took the values from the SPD as shown in the BIOS menu and configured them by hand. This works without problems. I didn't try the latest F10 firmware yet, it might improve things. The memory is in the compatibility list of the mainboard, but it is not clear to me if the 2x 16GB configuration was tested. Update: After updating to BIOS version F10 it seems to work stable. So only XMP profile 1 needs to be chosen.

Storage

The M.2 storage is in the top slot. This Kingston A2000 has excellent reviews, but starting HWInfo when the drive is writing causes a BSOD on stornvme.sys. A search on 'stornvme.sys A2000' reveals I am not the only one with problems with this drive, so I am considering to swap it for a Samsung. I've also experienced BSOD on stornvme.sys in combination with Gigabyte tools.

RGB

I have the RGB version of the case, connected to the rgb header on the mainboard. The software from Gigabyte to control RGB was slow and causing blue screens. I might look into it at a later stage and maybe develop something myself, for the fun of it.

In general I don't care about RGB, but only the RGB version of the case was in stock and I find the way its done on this case quite nice I have to admit.

Power supply

For power supplies I always take the max. expected load (374W) times two (748W), hence 750W and never ever go cheap on them to prevent instability and fire hazzard. Also this supply runs without fan when 300W or less is consumed, so in practice it is off or
running at a very low, almost inaudible speed. Being a platinum supply it doesn't run too inefficient at low loads and most efficient at 50% load, and that's the max load for this system. And last but not least the 750W version is 140mm deep, higher wattages of the Planinum series and all supplies of the Titanium series are 150mm deep. Trust me you really need this extra 10mm...

I did have to remove the sleeve from the mainboard power supply cable, otherwise it was impossible to route it. This was quite a job. The cpu power cable is routed behind the power supply.

I didn't opt for an SFX power supply, because at least on paper, this full sized supply is more silent.

Noise

The build is silent. Very silent, almost inaudible when idle and a pleasant souding 'hum' when under load (gaming at ultra settings). When running a stress test it makes quite some noise however. With CPB enabled it stayed below 70C, so by adjusting the curves and allowing for a higher temperature it might run a bit warmer, but more silent, I have to play with this. If you don't need the max. performance the CPU can deliver, disable CPB and it runs a lot cooler and more quiet. With CPB disabled a stress test of a few minutes kept the CPU below 50C.

A good ear might hear the chipset fan under heavy load (see also above)

This all depends also on the fan curve settings, ambient temperature and is very personal.

Log

Initial build made on October 19, 2019. Replaced the 2 included case fans with 3 Noctua NF A12x15 PWM chromax black case fans on November 30, 2019.

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Comments

  • 2 months ago
  • 2 points

Very smart build. Great form factor. Looks like it took a lot of patience. Looking forward to the better pics.

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks, it barely fits, but it is doable. My last build before this was an AMD Athon 1Ghz big tower and this was 20 years ago. I will take some extra pictures of the finished build, but it is hard to make new detail pictures of the process without taking it apart again.

If you're planning to do this yourself, please ask as much as you like! The builds with this case of others really helped me, so I'd like to help as well.

  • 2 months ago
  • 2 points

How's the performance on the 3700x and NH-L12s, are you able to OC it by a slight bit or more with it? Looking into building a pc similar to yours later around February when i have the time for it.

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

I don't (plan to) overclock it myself, so I don't know. I picked the 3700x because it was the fastest Ryzen with 65W TDP. My goal is a fast and stable PC that's also very silent, so if I over-spec it is mostly to achieve this, not to win a few fps. I will post some benchmarks / temperatures later this week.

(I know my RTX 2080 is overclocked, but it came this way from Gigabyte, also it was the only 2 slot Windforce RTX in stock at the moment.)

  • 2 months ago
  • 2 points

I’m building in this case at the moment and it’s a nightmare for me. How I’m the world so you route the PSU extension cable in its proper place and still be able to line up the PSU ‘shroud’ with the appropriate holes?

If you have any other hints or tips they’d be greatly valued!

Cheers!

  • 2 months ago
  • 2 points

In my case it is a flat cable. It is not 'properly' routed, but stuffed behind the PSU / case while the PSU was already in place , you can see it in picture 6, it doesn't go further than that, but the top lid still closes without problems.

Against what most people do, I put in the PSU first. My wife helped with lining up, holding the bracket it in place, while I put in the screws. First put them in a little bit, then thighten them.

I am not sure if the PSU extension cable will fit properly when trying to route it first behind the PSU, one extra 'risk' in this case is it can press against the power switch and flip itm

Unfortunately my case got a little bit damaged at one of those screw holes, a (very) small chip of coasting is missing now. They seem to be an afterthought of the design. So I don't really want to try to re-route it.

Maybe you can also try to route it in a different way then I did. I think in my case (esp. If you take / have a round cable), it could go behind the mainboard, but then between the mainboard and power supply and then to the PSU. Routing it against the back of the case fits, but it might touch the heat pipes (not sure how hot they get) and it obstructs the air flow to push the air outside, so it wouldn't be my first pick.

The design of this case it to pull air in, creating over-pressure and the air leaves the case 'naturaly' without the help of fans pushing air out. Obstructing the air outlets, doesn't help in this case, but I am not sure how much harm a single cable really will do.

Maybe it helps to know there were a few moments I really thought it would all never fit. Why did I buy this case? I had to redo the build a few times and had remove the plastic sleeve of my brand new premium power supply mainboard cable. Keep calm and you will get it done.

  • 2 months ago
  • 2 points

Love the build +1️⃣

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

what case you are using. didnt mentioned in the specs

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

Silverstone RVZ03 RGB black.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

It's great build but i'm planing to get the same case soon do you think i can put my psu non modular note that i don't really care about extra bracket of the 2.5

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

I would not advise to go for a non-modular supply, because there is very little space available. Also the cables might be too stiff. With a modular supply you can also choose a different / shorter / more flexible cable if needed. There is also a plate right after the power supply where the RGB controller is mounted. I don't remember if it can be removed. But this is the main limiting factor of room behind power the supply. That's why I (and Silverstone) also advise to use a supply with a maximum depth of 140mm. A small form factor PSU can also be used, but they will not fit the provided PSU bracket well and are more noisy (on paper that is).

Also mind there is no extra bracket for 2.5inch drives. The Graphics Card holder has also place for two 2.5" drives on top. Only if you choose not to use the graphics card holder at all, you will get some extra space, but then you might have to come up with a different solution to support the graphics card, depending on its size / weight.

In general my advice is to never go cheap on the power supply, it's one of the most important parts of your system.

Let me know if you have any further questions.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Thank you so much for your reply first of all my case will not have the RGB controller and my power supply is great its seasonic that's why i want to use it in this case.

My graphic card dimension (279 x 140 x 42 mm)

to be clear i don't mind to sacrifice 2.5 Drive and the cable management all i want to put my old hardware in this case i will be using the same cooler that you using too

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

The plate for the rgb controller is also supporting the gpu bracket, so if it is removable at all, you cannot use the gpu bracket anymore.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

That's kinda tough but i will give it a try and if didn't workout i will get 140mm PSU fully modular. I have 2 question for you 1- Does the case comes full filter dust and fans, did you notice any dust inside your case? 2- Do you think this case can fit in backpack?

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

1 No. It comes with 3 dust filters. 1 for the CPU inlet and 2 for the GPU inlets. The PSU grate does not support mounting a filter, but I think is an outlet. The case does NOT come with 3 fans, but only 2. You could try to order a separate SilverStone fan of the same type, but it was not available (at least not in The Netherlands.).

I've bought 3 black Noctua 120x15mm fans, so I have 2 silverstone 120x15mm fans left now. I could send you one (send me a PM to discuss if you are interested). Since there is over-pressure in the case and I use filters on all the fan inlets, there was no dust inside the case the last time I've looked. The filters themselves get very dusty after a while though ;)

2 That depends on the size of the backpack :) Although compact, the case is still quite large: 382mm (W) x 105mm (H) x 364mm (D). Larger than a PS3 for example. I've read people carrying it a backpack, but it should be a larger college backpack. My son has one for school, I will try of it fits and report the type he has. The other option is a really large travellers backpack, normally used for trekking.

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  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

I haven't run benchmarks yet with the new dual Noctua push-pull configuration. I will do so the coming week and report back.

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry for the delay. I've taken some HWInfo screenshots, but want to add titles to them before posting.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

This going to be really helpful since i will be using the same cooler

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