SFF On A Tight Budget

zero_cool

Disciple
My 10-year-old system was well past its prime and with a failed motherboard, an upgrade was necessary. I had been longing for an ITX build with the goal to reuse as many components from my ATX build. This narrowed down my case options to Thermaltake Core V1 and Corsair 250D, both hard to get. It took me over 3 years to find a case but managed to get an unused Corsair 250D from a guy who had it lying around for years as it was an impulse buy. On the components side, I struggled a lot as I went with Intel so budget motherboard options were non-existent and it was a choice between either a Z490 or Z590, both in the range of Rs. 30,000. I found the last B460 ITX board from SMC which was cheaper than a Z series board at Rs. 15,400, but it was expensive in the motherboard realm. The last tricky bit was the CPU cooler as ITX cases do not have good height clearance, I had to research a lot for a cooler that was shorter than 140mm and available in India.

Building an ITX system is also way different from an ATX one as the former demands a lot of planning in the order in which you place the components. If you break the sequence, it becomes impossible to route the cables, place the storage drives or presents others problems. A good example of this was my struggle with front panel audio connector. Initially, out of frustration of cable management, I did not plug the audio cable but later changed my mind after setting up the system, to fix my original decision I ended unlocking the graphic card using a chopstick, removing it carefully just to get enough room to insert front panel audio cable after a lot of finger wriggling.

On the graphic card front, I did have one from my older system but, I feel, ITX builds have enough room only for two slot cards and that will create problems in the years to come.

While building the system was not an easy task it was not as difficult as to find the ITX specific parts. One should keep in mind, an ITX system is a one-time build. It will be a nightmare to clean this one so I am already planning filter placements and the blower of my vacuum cleaner is the will come in handy in the coming times.

Overall, the CPU, RAM, motherboard, cooler, fans and case came to Rs. 43,000, which certainly is not cheap when compared to a usual mATX build but for an ITX, I don't think it could've been any better.

Specs
Intel Core i5 10400
Noctua U9S Chromax
32 GB 2666 Crucial Ballistix (2 x 16 GB)
Corsair Obsidian 250D
Samsung 840 Pro 256 GB SSD
WD Green 2 TB
WD Blue 500 GB
EVGA 1060 SC
Antec TruPower 650W
Corsair 140mm front intake fan
Corsair 120mm side intake fan
Arctic 120 mm side intake fan
2 x 80mm Noctua NF-A8 rear exhaust fans
BenQ XL2411T
Logitech G110 and G402
 

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It's giving me anxiety. I also have a small Cabinet. Dealing with parts in a small is difficult. Yesterday only i was having difficulty removing my gpu, because the switch was nowhere to found as there was no space to reach there.
 
It's giving me anxiety. I also have a small Cabinet. Dealing with parts in a small is difficult. Yesterday only i was having difficulty removing my gpu, because the switch was nowhere to found as there was no space to reach there.
Every time I look at the internals of the system, I wonder about the day I need to take the whole thing apart for just dusting.

how much did u pay for Corsair Obsidian 250D?
About Rs. 3000
 
Every time I look at the internals of the system, I wonder about the day I need to take the whole thing apart for just dusting.


About Rs. 3000
Servicability is one of the reasons I don't see myself going smaller than mid-tower, I wouldn't get over my worry of how I'd have to disassemble everything to take out anything I need to for cleaning or hardware fault :p
 
Servicability is one of the reasons I don't see myself going smaller than mid-tower, I wouldn't get over my worry of how I'd have to disassemble everything to take out anything I need to for cleaning or hardware fault :p
If I could rely only on NVME SSD, modular PSU and a PCI express powered card, I my cleaning woes will reduce substantially but it really isn't worth the cost.
 
Nice... BTW, how are the temps looking?

I also once embarked on this journey but decided against it in the end due the high component prices as well as the high temperatures & dusty environment in delhi/ncr region where I live. Later decided to go with a smaller mATX case to save on some space & it worked out great in the end but cable management & component installation was/is a pain in the a**, specially that hard to reach CPU power port on the motherboard & cable management of all the fans & their RGB cables. I now really dread opening it up for cleaning or parts swapping. Full ATX cases are so much more convenient in this regard specially for our country.
 
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