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Question Moving from ATX to mITX

Jul 6, 2020
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Hello!

I bought a computer a while ago from iBUYPOWER and while it's been a decent machine it takes up a whole lot of room. I've been considering migrating from my current ATX motherboard to a Mini ITX but am running into doubts on whether I'll be able to do this by just swapping the motherboard and case. Below are my parts list, could anyone recommend a new much smaller form factor motherboard and case that could still hold my power supply and video card?

My goal is to use this new smaller PC to still game like a champ but be able to take the PC on the go. Any other creative suggestions on making this thing more portable and take up less room are welcome!

Case: AeroCool Quartz Revo ARGB Front and Side Tempered Glass Gaming Case
Processor: Intel® Core™ i9-9900KF Processor (8x 3.60GHz/16MB L3 Cache)
Motherboard: MSI MAG Z390 TOMAHAWK
Memory: 16 GB [8 GB x2] DDR4-3200 - ADATA XPG SPECTRIX D41
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER - 8GB GDDR6 - ASUS DUAL EVO OC
Power Supply: 800 Watt - Standard 80 PLUS Gold
Processor Cooling: iBUYPOWER 240mm Addressable RGB Liquid Cooling System
 
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What case dimensions are you trying to get to?
mATX cases are generally 2-3" shorter in height compared to ATX. You can get some that are less deep also, but then again, there's shallower(?) ATX cases also.

I'm a huge supporter of mATX for all, but I'm not sure if only stepping down to mATX is going to be worth the cost of a new mobo and case for your new system. I suppose you'll be able to sell the old ones though.
 
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Jul 6, 2020
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Really as small as possible without going so far as to cut airflow too hard. Don't want to run into overheating hah. Ideally it could fit in a backpack in its final form.
 
Jul 6, 2020
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After further research a Mini ITX might be closer to what I'm looking for. I'll end up selling the parts I won't use in the end. I definitely want to keep the 2070 SUPER and CPU.
 

logainofhades

Titan
Moderator
Yea, an ITX system would be a better option, for what you are after, with regards to space savings. You are going to be needing a new motherboard, case, PSU, and cooling, at a minimum. That 9900k is going to be difficult to keep cool, in a system the size you are hoping for, just as an FYI.
 
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Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
Be prepared for sticker shock. And a serious think session or 12 about parts, fitment, clearances. In mITX, airflow is a secondary concern, there's literally not enough space inside that's not filled with components, everything ends up next to an air hole anyways. But boy will you pay through the nose, my mITX case was $240, mobo $250 and needed 3 months of searching and changing parts and design just to get what I wanted. Of course the case IS the size of a shoebox, for a size 10 sneaker. Literally.

Did I mention it's also full custom loop with 2x 240mm rads? Lol.
 
Jul 6, 2020
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@USAFRet I have a friend at work who buys just about any semi modern part for builds he ends up selling. Figured the best route would be to save some money by making minimal adjustments since he already offered to buy any parts off me.

@Karadjgne that's gorgeous! What are you running in that thing?

I also did some looking up on pcpartpicker and am starting to get a clearer picture of what I'd need. So really the only parts I'd need to swap out are the motherboard and case, as long as I'm clever with choosing a case I should be able to pull this off.

Does anyone have mITX cases they'd recommend for this little project?
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
Heh.
That's an nCase M1 v6.1. Built by Lian-Li.
Asus Strix X570-I
Ryzen 3700x
Gskill 3600 32Gb
Evga 2070 Super Black
Corsair SF600 Platinum SFX
2Tb Adata nvme
240mm Hardware Labs GTS
240mm XSPC Tx240 (waiting on it still)
Heatkiller IV gpu/cpu blocks
EK 3.2 DDC
Iceman reservoir/pump combo
2x Noctua A12x25
2x Noctua A12x15
Assorted Koolance fittings, EKwb 10/16 soft tube.

Not a single case fan, everything is taken care of by the rad fans. There's enough cooling potential with those rads and fans that I'd be very surprised if a) it ever ramps up past @ 600 rpm on the fans, or b) I can hear it at all from more than a foot away.

MITX is all about 1 thing alone. Homework. And lots of it. But the end result is nothing short of spectacular if done right, and doesn't need to look like a Unicorn that threw up a Rainbow to do so.
 
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logainofhades

Titan
Moderator
Just some quick builds, I threw together, for a new build.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-10600K 4.1 GHz 6-Core Processor ($294.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9x65 33.84 CFM CPU Cooler ($49.95 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte Z490I AORUS ULTRA Mini ITX LGA1200 Motherboard ($259.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3600 CL16 Memory ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($109.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER 8 GB WINDFORCE OC 3X Video Card ($499.99 @ B&H)
Case: Silverstone RVZ01-E HTPC Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair CXM 650 W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($94.99 @ Best Buy)
Total: $1489.88
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-07-06 13:09 EDT-0400


For pure gaming the 10600k is the best bang, for the buck chip, right now. I am not sure though, if it would be able to run at the clock speeds necessary, to beat a Ryzen 3000, at this point in time.

The 3700x would be superior, at non gaming tasks, and I don't expect gaming to be much different, vs a 10600k, due to clock speed restraints, of such a system.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor ($272.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9x65 SE-AM4 CPU Cooler ($49.90 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte B550I AORUS PRO AX Mini ITX AM4 Motherboard ($179.99 @ B&H)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3600 CL16 Memory ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($109.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER 8 GB WINDFORCE OC 3X Video Card ($499.99 @ B&H)
Case: Silverstone RVZ01-E HTPC Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair CXM 650 W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($94.99 @ Best Buy)
Total: $1387.83
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-07-06 13:10 EDT-0400
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
Those are nice, the Ravens are seriously good airflow cases, top of the listing for a long time.

But mITX takes some thought first. I'd opt for the sfx psu, it's smaller and less bulky interior.

First you'll need a plan. Just what exactly do you want to accomplish. Then shop for a case that fits the requirements. Then shop for parts that'll fit. It's backwards to a standard ATX build thought process. And you'll probably spend a good month doing just that, only to scrap everything and start over.
 
And that iBuyPower "Standard" PSU needs to go (no one will actually buy it, though)
iBuyPower 240mm "cooling system"?etc, etc.
Obviously iBuyPower doesn't manufacture PSUs. It depends on what the make/model of the PSU the OP got.

Cases - yes, do careful research to make sure your current components will fit. The smaller the case, the more restrictions you'll run into.
  • ATX PSU since you already own an ATX PSU - not SFX
  • 240mm radiator - if you want to keep what you already own
  • hard drives, etc.
  • GPU length (267mm) and width (119mm). Also your GPU is 2.75 slots tall (which could end up being your biggest hurdle)
Also, if you're going to be transporting this thing a lot, large tempered glass side panels may not be preferable due to fragility.

Fractal Design Era ITX
Fractal Design Nano S - slightly larger and more of a "typical" layout.
 
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Jul 6, 2020
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The Fractal Design Era ITX case is wonderful. After continuing to research, I think I'll start putting together a build on pcpartpicker starting with the case, while heavily considering the more expensive parts I own (the i9 CPU and 2070 SUPER). It looks like the Fractal Design Era case will allow a good amount of room for my card and I like that it will push the air down and our of the bottom sides.

Thank you guys for the parts lists! I've been using them as inspiration while piecing together what could be best.
 


Max GPU thickness = 47mm. Your GPU is 58mm. Looks like there's a metal frame in the base that you could cut out, not sure how much "case modding" you want to do.

Also, it seems from reviews, that using an ATX PSU is, at the very least, not going to allow you to install the second fan on a 240mm radiator.

Careful planning ;)
 
Jul 6, 2020
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I wouldn't mind some light case modding but after you pointed that out if i was to cut the metal frame I might also have to find a way to suspend the graphics card in the frame's place. I could just lower it and trim the ends if necessary but I'm not 100% sure if the ~10mm less space would impact cooling dramatically. If anyone thinks that it wouldn't be a huge deal I can still see myself using the case with my current parts (it's just so pretty).

If that really wouldn't make a huge temp difference, I believe all I would need next would be something like a Corsair Hydro X 240mm for CPU cooling and a SilverStone Technology SX800-LTI 800W for a compatible PSU. Would I be missing anything else here?

If that would make a big temperature difference I would need to find another case. The Raven cases look pretty menacingly cool. Not sure if the parts linked previously would fit yet.
 

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