Author Topic: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"  (Read 5987 times)

Ari Altman

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TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« on: February 26, 2017, 10:35:54 AM »
Are y'all ready for this?



Keep your eyes peeled - the full hands-on assembly guide will drop in a few days!!!

Update: the beast is alive - check it out right here!
« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 02:26:46 PM by Ari Altman »

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2017, 11:10:07 AM »
Can't wait!

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2017, 07:57:18 PM »
Is there any chance you could fit 2 TXPs in there (or 2 of the new 1080ti's that come out tomorrow)...

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2017, 09:18:27 PM »
That's not possible with the ITX form factor, and while it's possible with micro ATX, I will not endorse that setup, as the cards will overheat.

But think of it this way - the system pictured above is as fast as TBG's $2,500 4K Gaming PC that uses dual GTX 1070 cards, yet is 1/4 the size and around the same price.

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2017, 02:26:18 PM »
Can't wait!

The Ultimate Mini PC Assembly Guide is now live! I look forward to your comments and questions!

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2017, 11:23:28 AM »
Thank you Ari!

Any concern with swapping the TXP for one of the new 1080ti's released last night?

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2017, 11:31:24 AM »
Thank you Ari!

Any concern with swapping the TXP for one of the new 1080ti's released last night?

I'm going to be doing that swap soon enough (i.e., when the 1080 Ti can actually be purchased), but I do have concerns about using a 1080 Ti with an open-air custom cooler, rather than the Founders Edition, which uses a blower cooler. As built, the Ultimate Mini PC didn't have any issues with the GPU overheating, whereas the CPU cooling situation is a bit more challenging. By opening up that video card and allowing all of its heat to dump into the case (which is basically packed full with gear), you're fixing one issue that "ain't broke," and potentially breaking something else in the process.

So, to answer your question, a 1080 Ti Founders Edition would work perfectly in this system, and that's all I'll recommend until I can test an open-air card in the build.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2017, 02:50:44 PM by Ari Altman »

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2017, 01:49:02 PM »
Perfect! I'll get a founder's edition card too.

For the case, does the "quiet" version work as well?

For SSD, what is the difference between the two drives? and is it better to upgrade to the 850 Pro 512 or 960 Pro 512 nvme?

For RAM, any difference between the 3000 and 3200 ram? Is it okay to go with the 32gb option of the same type instead of 16?

Do we need to get the right angle adapters separately for drives?

And is there anything else I need to add in order to fully assemble?

Thank you!
Doug
« Last Edit: March 01, 2017, 02:17:42 PM by MachineLearnThings »

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2017, 02:50:02 PM »
Perfect! I'll get a founder's edition card too.

For the case, does the "quiet" version work as well?

For SSD, what is the difference between the two drives? and is it better to upgrade to the 850 Pro 512 or 960 Pro 512 nvme?

For RAM, any difference between the 3000 and 3200 ram? Is it okay to go with the 32gb option of the same type instead of 16?

Do we need to get the right angle adapters separately for drives?

And is there anything else I need to add in order to fully assemble?

Thank you!
Doug

I think I can help you with all of those questions:

(1) Quiet SG13 versus standard version: I would definitely go with the standard SG13. For a high performance system, it makes a big difference, and for what it's worth, when I told SilverStone what I'd be doing with this case, they immediately suggested I skip the quiet version and use the standard edition. The quiet version is really for low-powered HTPCs.

(2) SSDs: I would not recommend the 850 Pro 512GB at this point. It's really outdated and overpriced. If you'd like an SSD upgrade, absolutely go with the Samsung 960 Evo 500GB or the 960 Pro 512GB. The 960 Pro is slightly faster, and has much better long-term durability due to the MLC NAND it uses (versus the TLC in the 960 Evo). You're paying for longevity here.

(3) RAM: Honestly, DDR4-3000 C15 and DDR4-3200 C16 perform the same, and the DDR4-3000 kit is on sale right now, so that's what I'd go with. If you want 32GB, go with this DDR4-3000 kit. The prices on DDR4 are spiraling out of control at this point, with no end in sight, so definitely don't overpay just to get DDR4-3200. DDR4-3000 hasn't jumped in price quite as much.

(4) SATA cables: unfortunately, the Asus Z270I ROG Strix board comes with four straight SATA cables, rather than right-angle cables. You can certainly try to jam them in, but it would probably be worth buying an aftermarket right-angle cable. You'll need two if you use two SATA drives as in the article, but you'll only need one if you switch from the 850 Evo 500GB to the M.2-style 960 Evo or 960 Pro, and you won't need any at all if you skip the secondary SSD and go with a single big M.2 drive like the 960 Evo 1TB.

(5) Other required parts: If you decide to go with an M.2 drive, remember that you'll need a jeweler's-type screwdriver to install it. Otherwise, you don't need anything other than a Philips #2 screwdriver.

One last note: if you're building this next week, the 1080 Ti Founders Edition is going to be the only model you'll find available (if it's not sold out). Custom cards will not be ready for a while, but that works out perfectly for the Ultimate Mini PC, where the Founders Edition cooler is really preferable.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2017, 02:51:58 PM by Ari Altman »

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2017, 03:50:06 PM »
Thank you Ari! All parts are on order and I'll let you know how it goes!

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2017, 12:39:12 PM »
Hi Ari,

I got the 1TB 960 Pro (and I'll assemble everything once the 1080ti arrives).

Do you have a recommendation for a large (e.g. 2,4,6 TB drive) for storing photos and large files?

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2017, 01:58:44 PM »
Hi Ari,

I got the 1TB 960 Pro (and I'll assemble everything once the 1080ti arrives).

Do you have a recommendation for a large (e.g. 2,4,6 TB drive) for storing photos and large files?

While you can technically install a 3.5" desktop-class drive in this chassis, it would be really tight. I haven't tested it to see whether it would conflict with any of the other parts in the build, specifically the front intake fan or the video card. Unless you really need more than 2TB, I therefore suggest you go with a thin 2.5" laptop-class drive. These models top out at 2TB, and a good pick is the Seagate Barracuda 2TB.

MachineLearnThings

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2017, 04:03:05 PM »
Thank you Ari!

When installing the Samsung 960 Pro, should I use the M.2 slot with the heatsink shield?

If so, do I remove the entire piece of tape underneath that heatshield, or just remove the thin protector film from it and let the heat shield stick to the SSD?

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2017, 06:15:37 PM »
Thank you Ari!

When installing the Samsung 960 Pro, should I use the M.2 slot with the heatsink shield?

If so, do I remove the entire piece of tape underneath that heatshield, or just remove the thin protector film from it and let the heat shield stick to the SSD?

Definitely use the top-mounted slot, which is the one with the shield. The bottom-mounted slot will get zero airflow leading to severe overheating.

The protective film should be removed, but the other tape is a thermal conductor - don't remove that! It shouldn't actually be sticky.

Ari Altman

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Re: TBG's "Assembling the Ultimate Mini PC (2017)"
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2017, 08:15:54 AM »
Hi Ari,

I went to install the power supply and unfortunately the one linked to amazon in the build guide is not the same as the one in your photos (it didn't match the adapter bracket, and it doesn't have the on/off switch), and unfortunately it is way too tall to fit in the case.

Can you please link me to the model you used?

Thank you!
Doug

I'm so sorry about that - it was indeed a bad link. Here is the correct link to the SilverStone SX700-LPT. I've also updated the guide, so others won't have this issue.