Designing a mini itx case with no cooling compromises

Hello there, i’ve been a long time passive watcher so to speak of the level1news, but just recently i thought maybe some other people would be interested in some of my projects. My computer related hobbies include vintage keyboards, and building all sorts of custom stuff, as i do metalwork for living. Recently i wanted to build myself a new PC, with VFIO in mind, using ryzen 5700g and dedicated gpu of some sort, i already have a 1080ti with a waterblock from a previous build, but i want my pc to be quiet and compact. Most of the ITX cases on the market don’t really have enough space for decent watercooling gear, so my goal here is not maximum compactness, rather a fairly small build, but with enough room to comfortably fit two 240 or 280mm radiators preferably, with quiet 140mm fans. Here are some of my sketches at the current stage of design:

one side of the case houses the sfx psu and motherboard, other side is for the gpu. A full size gpu will fit comfortably. Everything is first mounted to a removable midsection of the case, So You can mount everything, do the cable routing etc, and then it should slide into the case from the gpu side, to make building in a small case more comfortable. As a bonus the case is symmetrical - top and bottom are the same sheetmetal pieces, so you can flip it around for left/right side of the desk.

I plan on making the case from mostly 2mm aluminium. except the gpu holder bracket which is 1,5mm thick steel for extra rigidity - those damn gpu’s are getting too heavy! Case will have two dust filters, top and bottom, to remove them you have to unscrew four screws and the legs/handles come off as one panel, covering the filter. Design is a bit inspired by a g5 mac obviously, but it’s my own twist on it, it’s a bit simmilar but well pretty much everything is different from the mac case. Let me know what you think :slight_smile:


Figured out the top design to allow both 240 and 280 radiators without blocking any airflow pretty much:

Holes will have to be countersunk for M3 screws.

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Its nice seeing others creating their own cases from the ground up, I’m in the home stretch of my own.
How are the side panels attach to the case? I ended up using using d-ring screws on the four corners on my design.

Also wouldn’t two 240/280 rads be waaay overkill for a 5700g + 1080ti? or are you trying to go with ultra low speed fans for the rads?

Hey, thanks for a reply! The side panels will rest on the two bends of the top and bottom of the case, visible on the first pictures. then they will be held on with four screws i think, i haven’t decided on the mounting yet. probably M3 countersunk screws for a flat look. (in 2mm aluminium they are fitting nicely). It might be a bit overkill, but i want a very silent computer, so yes, my goal is to have the fans barley spin most of the time :slight_smile: I did previously build a completely passive radiator for watercooling, that could handle a decent heat load, however it was just a bit too big to be practical.

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