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Windows 7: Got a New Case!

22 Apr 2014   #1
Lady Fitzgerald

Got a New Case!

I've been lusting after the Corsair Obsidian 650D case for some time now. I just hated to spend the time and money to mod it and move the innards of my present ring into it plus I really didn't have room although I recently worked out how to make room for it without knocking out any walls. I noticed late last week that Fry's had the 650D for the same price Amazon was selling it and for much less than NewEgg. I've learned that when Fry's is cheaper than Amazon or NewEgg, they are probably getting ready to discontinue it so, last Friday, I hauled my ample asset down to Fry's and got the last one they had other than the display model (which was in rather tough condition). I wanted to get the case locally instead of ordering it so, if there was any shipping damage (not to mention there is a lower likelihood of damage on a case bought locally), I went have to ship it back. That evening, I got online and order a right side panel (the one without the window since I don't like windows and I'm going to put a couple of fans in the left panel), a couple of HDD cages, three HDD trays, a 350D front panel connector assembly (so I can steal the USB 3.0 connector, cable, and header to replace the outmoded pass-through arrangement on the 650D), and some rubber feet to replace the original plastic ones.

I'm going to install a third HDD cage in the case but I also want to move the original two cages to the right of the case so both the floor mounted cages are the same distance from the side of the case (yes, I'm that anal). I also want to lower the two original HDD cages so the bottom two HHDs in the bottom cage are on the same level as the top two HDDs in the third cage. While part of my reason for that is appearance, the main reason is to allow air to pass through the front cage to the HHDs in the third cage. I don't need much to keep the HDDs cool but I will need some getting through from the front fan (I'm not worried about getting air to the bottom tray in the third cage since I will put my SSD there). Since I don't want six HDDs secured into the case with only four tiny screws in a plastic base, I also need to secure the top of the two front cages to the 5.25" cage. I also want to be able to remove the cages to get at the front fan in case I need to change back to a 20-25mm thick fan (more on that in a moment). I figured the easiest way to do that would be to cut the bottom off another HDD cage (the reason I ordered two) and mount it under the 5.25" cage using spacers to compensate for lowering the two front cages.

I had originally planned on replacing the front fan with a couple of 120mm fans but it was starting to look like a lot of work so I now plan on removing the front grill and replacing the stock 200mm fan with a modified CM Megaflow; it moves more air anyway. By mounting the front flange on the outside of the case front instead of on the inside, it will clear the HDD cages. I want to keep the cages removable so, if something goes wrong with the Megaflow or it just doesn't work out, I can go back to the original fan or another 20-25mm fan.

I'm wanting to put a total of six Xigmatek XAF-F1452 140mm Case Fans in the caseótwo on top, two on the left case side panel, and one on the rear of the caseó and, possibly, a seventh one on the CPU cooler (I'm going to move the innards of the present rig to the new case). The Xigmateks have great air flow but only fair static pressure so they may not work well with my Gemini II S524 cooler, in which case I'll have to put the Gelid that is there now back on it. One reason I chose this fan (other than I like the appearance) is it can be mounted on either 120mm or 140mm fan mounting holes. That will allow me to mount one on the rear fan position. Being 140mm in diameter, it will cover the top and bottom rows of holes in the grill that is not covered by the stock 120mm fan (I need to seal as many air dust leaks as possible since dust is a huge problem where I live). I want 140mm fans since they are quieter than 120mm fans at the same CFM since they can run slower but can still get cranked up should I need more cooling during high usage periods. I also wanted all the fans to be the same (other than the front one; I'm staying with 200mm since it will require less surgery) and I wanted a 140mm at the back.

I need to put filters on the side fans but it's impossible to get the kind of filters I wanted in 140mm. However, there are some so called 140mm fan filters being sold that have mounting holes that are only 111mm apart instead of the normal 125mm for a 140mm fan. 111mm is too large for 120mm fan mounting holesóthose are 105mm apartóbut the Xigmatek fans have little ears that can be added to allow them to fit on 140mm fan mounting holes. Those ears have enough room on them to, hopefully, allow slotting the holes enough to let them fit on the 111mm spacing. They were cheap enough that I went ahead and ordered three of them (one for a spare) to see if they will work. If not, I can always use the readily available 120mm fan filters. I won't cut any holes in the side panel until I know which filter is going to work for me.

I haven't decided what to do about the top fans. That stupid mesh has got to go. It looks ok but I might as well dump dirt through it. The Koolance fan shroud would be the quick and dirty way to deal with itójust cutaway the grill and the side of the well it's inóbut I don't really want or need that extra height (I won't be going underwater). The wells the screws go into are also little dust traps. I've though about putting a plate on top of the grill and riveting it inóthat would look bestóbut getting an exact fit would be a bit...ah...challenging. I don't want to any filling there with Bondo or body solder since I want to avoid repainting the top (other than the plate); getting an exact color and texture match to the rest of the case would be pretty much impossible and I don't to repaint the entire case if at all possible (I'm not worried about the back and bottom since no one will see them so getting a close match to the existing paint is close enough). Another option would be to put a 1/4" aluminum plate on top of the case after cutting away the grill area. I could fasten that with screws coming up from below into tapped holes in the bottom of the plate. Again, I'm open to suggestions

I'm also going to cut off the center tab at the bottom of the case that helps to align the case side fore and aft since it's in the way of removing the bottom HDD tray (again, what was Corsair thinking when they designed that!?) I may also have to trim a bit off the remaining tab closest to the front of the case; time will tell. I don't think I will have to trim the case flange itself; again, time will tell.

Right now, I'm mostly at the planning stage, trying to work out what I want to do and how to do it. The back and bottom of the case is lousy with air dust leaks (what were the designers thinking?) so I need to work out how to seal those up without looking dorky (I'm open to suggestions). I'm thinking about soldering plates on the inside of the holes on the back, then filling the hole with Bondo or body solder (solder is less likely to crack or fall off but is harder to work). The bottom I'm less worried about. The worst of the leaks are around the third cage so I may just mount it permanently and use some kind of caulk to seal the holes (please don't suggest silicone); the sound deadening foam I'm going to put in will hide that. I can cut off the tab on the side of the bottom of cage and bend over the two on the front of the bottom of the cage so they won't protrude from the bottom.

Well, I've rattled on long enough for now. Due to my age and health, it is going to take me a few months to get this case modded, working on it a little at a time. I really love this case but Corsair could have made it so much better with a little attention to little details, such as the position and height of the HDD cages, the unnecessary holes, keeping the outmoded pass-through USB 3.0 front panel cables (especially since they have the part to fix it), etc.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #2

Windows 10 64 bit

I have several Corsair Carbide 500R cases. They have lots of room and are relatively quiet. However, I've had trouble with the front panel USB ports on these cases. Corsair sends out front panel replacements under warranty without problems, but I've had 3 cases that the front panel USB ports have died. Two that I built for clients (that lasted about 6 months each) and now the USB port on my own (recording studio) 500R that is only a little over 3 months old.

The one that failed (one of two) on my recording studio PC has only been used, at the most, 4 or 5 times.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #3

Windows 10 Pro X64

Congrats Lady Fitz, that is a nice case.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Apr 2014   #4
Lady Fitzgerald


Thanks, guys. So far, the only three major complaints I've seem about this case are the fan speed switch (the earlier ones frequently went up in smoke, literally, but that has been somewhat fixed on the later cases), the stupid and long outdated front panel USB 3.0 pass through setup (the fix for that is to buy a front panel assembly from a 350D, which I've done—it's on its way to me—and swap out the USB 3.0 parts), and the paint chipping out (that has also been fixed on later cases). According to the part number, I have one of the later cases so that pretty much took care of two of the problems. I'm probably not going to use the fan switch, preferring to use the PWM headers on my MOBO as long as they can handle up to two fans each (I'm waiting to hear from the manufacturers of the fans I plan on using about how much juice their fans slurp), otherwise, I will have to use one or more powered PWM hubs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #5

Windows 10 64 bit

The front panels on the 500R's are USB 3.0 and one of the two dies in each case. What is the issue with the 3.0 ports on 650D case?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #6
Lady Fitzgerald


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by fireberd View Post
The front panels on the 500R's are USB 3.0 and one of the two dies in each case. What is the issue with the 3.0 ports on 650D case?
Instead of the ports having cables connecting to a USB 3.0 header on the MOBO, they have cables that pass through the back of the case and plug into the back USB 3.0 ports.

That was fine when USB 3.0 first came out and most MOBOs that had USB 3.0 didn't have a header. However, now that all MOBOs have headers, keeping such Michael Mouse, outmoded techlessnology is just stupid. Even more stupid is Corsair's refusal to update the newer 650Ds even though Corsair has the needed part. Fortunately, the correct USB 3.0 cable and header is used in the 350D front panel connector assembly and it's just a matter of swapping it out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #7

Windows 10 64 bit

Wow! that is dumb. The 500R case comes with the USB 3.0 front panel port motherboard connector and a USB 2.0 motherboard adapter cable.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #8
Lady Fitzgerald


It was a practical solution for when USB 3.0 headers weren't readily available on MOBOs. The extra length also allowed connecting to USB 3.0 add on cards on older MOBOs that didn't have USB 3.0 but those days are now past. At least there is an easy fix.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #9
Layback Bear

Windows 10 Pro. 64/ version 1709 Windows 7 Pro/64

Nice case Lady.

You have certainly done your homework and planning.
I have a 600t and the fan controller is basically useless. I hope yours is better.
When you locate your case will you still have access to the power supply filter? Just a thought.

If by chance you need some fan filters you can take a look at some magnetic fan filters. They might meet your needs is some places.

Because of your concern with dust this might be helpful.
Covering your rear pci slots not use and any other holes with black packaging that comes with things like motherboards or video cards.
My reasoning is air should only come into and out of the case where you want it to and filters on all incoming air. I have a cat; you have Arizona.
Maybe this will give you a idea of what I'm speaking of. Look at the back panel of the case. The extra pci slots are covered on the back outside of the case with the same material.
The top of your new case looks ready made for a H100; just a thought.

Got a New Case!-dsc_0019-1024x685-2-.jpg

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2014   #10
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot

Nice, Lady Fitz.

I hope you'll share a pic or two when the build gets all done up. It sounds like it's going to be awesome.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Got a New Case!

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