Release roundup: Cases, cooling, SDKs, and more

This week in our release roundup, we have news from AMD, Antec, iBuypower, and Lian Li.

  • AMD releases ATI Stream SDK v2.2 with OpenCL 1.1. We open this week’s roundup with some news for programmers: a new version of the AMD Stream developer toolkit is available. The updated SDK adds support for the freshly ratified OpenCL 1.1 standard, the Ubuntu 10.04 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.5 operating systems, CPUs with SSE2.x or newer instructions, and "OpenCL and DirectX 10 interoperability," among other things. You can grab the toolkit on this page.

  • Antec launches brand new high-performance CPU cooler line. Although likely best known for its cases and power supplies, Antec makes coolers, too. The company has expanded its processor cooling line with the Kühler series, which encompasses Box, Shelf, and Flow designs (pictured above in that order). All three offerings have "whisper-quiet" 120-mm pulse-width-modulation fans and copper heat pipes. Antec says the Kühler Box in particular can blow "as much as 68.2 CFM or operating as quiet as 11.35 dBA."
  • iBuypower to offer USB 3.0 on all desktops at no additional charge. This is pretty much what it sounds like; iBuypower desktops should now all have USB 3.0 ports, even ones with motherboards that don’t have built-in support for the new I/O standard. Hey, if you’re going to buy a pre-built gaming rig, some next-gen connectivity can’t hurt.

  • Lian Li launches new mini tower. The new Mini Q Series PC-V354 might look small in that picture, but don’t be fooled. Lian Li has pulled all the stops here, with support for microATX, Mini-ITX, and Mini-DTX motherboard form factors, room for seven 3.5" hard drives, and beefy cooling thanks to two 120-mm intake fans at the front and one 140-mm fan at the top. This puppy even has a pair of USB 3.0 ports.

Am I the only one thinking that Lian Li case would make a nice foundation for a future system guide build? Hmm.

Comments closed
    • MadManOriginal
    • 9 years ago

    That Lian-Li case is rediculous. It’s over 17″ deep, wtf is the point in making a mATX case that’s tower-ish but ‘short’ at 13″ high with that kind of dimension? The only mATX case that ought to have that kind of dimension is an HTPC-style one and then only because it fits in well with other HT equipment.

    I would love to see Lian-Li make a mITX/DTX case that’s something like 8″x13″x10-13″ WxHxD (196x320x245-320mm) The layout would be like a standard tower just shrunk down, with space for a single optical drive at the top, overlapping at its rear due to overall depth with a standard size PSU which is in the same PSU position relative to the motherboard as a regular ATX case – not interfering with any heatsink you might want to put on the motherboard – and room for one or two 3.5″ HDDs at the front and maybe a 2.5″ spot tucked somewhere for an SSD. The cooling could either be front or bottom intake and rear exhaust, both 120mm, and if you forego the HDs or mount only one you could even get a midrange graphics card in the 10″ dimension let alone the 13″ one. Why they have to make almost all their cases have stupidly large depth dimensions is just beyond me. Vertical space is cheap, we want less horizontal space use!

    Aside from the fact that this one ยง[<http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811147112<]ยง is quite deep (but with some dremeling you can fit literally any video card) it has a better layout. It's made of cheaper materials of course but if Rosewill can make a simple straightforward layout case that makes the most of it's size without any outlandish dimensions why can't the big guys? (I have one and aside from the cheap-ish/thin materials compared to say Antec it's a fine case)

      • Ethyriel
      • 9 years ago

      You’re right, it’s a lot bigger than I thought it was. It’s 35mm wider than my A16, almost as deep, and not nearly short enough to make up for it.

        • dashbarron
        • 9 years ago

        When I bought my Lian-Li, I misread the dimensions and ended up getting a server case. Turns out I have 0 problems fitting in those 12inch + gpus though ๐Ÿ™‚

      • indeego
      • 9 years ago

      No mITX (or smaller) cases should have optical or 2.5″ drive bays. I keep saying this, but those two form factors are outdated and on their way out. They shouldn’t be in anything but towers/server systems. Well, I won’t consider them, at least.

      Optical is just about dead, from my perspective. I don’t want to use it anymoreg{<.<}g

        • MadManOriginal
        • 9 years ago

        I rip CDs and DVDs (no BR yet because I don’t care i[

    • indeego
    • 9 years ago

    q[<"room for seven 3.5" hard drives,"<]q Not needed. 1.8" or 2.5" max pleaseg{<.<}g

    • BeowulfSchaeffer
    • 9 years ago

    Very nice case. $?

    • burntham77
    • 9 years ago

    I am planning to build my next PC with a smaller case than my current tower, and that Lian Li case looks perfect. I don’t plan to use more than one video card and a soundcard, so a SFF motherboard would be a solid option.

    I like it. I want it.

    • Jambe
    • 9 years ago

    That case (minus the silly blue LEDs) is hot.

    You could fit a 5970 in it without the bottom drive cage.

    lol

    • Ethyriel
    • 9 years ago

    Lian-Li is getting closer. If you use an LGA1366 board, the socket is typically high enough that there won’t be any common heatsink height limitations. On LGA1156 it’s a different story, since those sockets are lower down. I wonder how much clearance it actually has in that situation. And the PSU is just going to cause problems with aftermarket graphics heatsinks now, though that’s certainly less of an issue.

    But what I really want is a dual slot mini-itx case this size (maybe narrower and shallower), with two 140mm fans in the front, the power supply mounted upside-down in the bottom venting from the graphics card, and a single slim optical and internal 2.5″ bay at the top of the case above the motherboard. There should be no exhaust fan except the PSU, and only vents above the motherboard I/O panel for a very controlled positive pressure airflow. Oh, and just because the case is small doesn’t mean a door wouldn’t be useful to keep noise down.

    I really got my hopes up when I first saw it that I was looking at something more in that direction. I guess everyone is still hung up on making mini-itx cases as small as possible, and not just smaller.

      • Ethyriel
      • 9 years ago

      To answer my own question, if the CPU socket is such that the heatsink is under the power supply, we’ll have about 125mm clearance. I’d say +/- 5mm since I’m really not sure how the motherboard mounts. I also gave a few extra mm under the power supply since it can’t be rotated 180หš, so it might even be as much as 135mm. Not bad, but not optimal. If they had added a couple slots and made it an ATX case it wouldn’t be an issue, and only add a couple inches to the case height.

        • Voldenuit
        • 9 years ago

        There are a few modders on [H] who fit a Noctua U9 in push/pull config on the V350. And several more radical ones with water cooling/tower heatsinks in the same case.

        Something like the Scythe Big Shuriken is more than enough for quiet cooling of 95W CPUs in tight confines these days.

          • Ethyriel
          • 9 years ago

          The thing that gets me about the Q08 is that top fan, it really seems far from optimal. If there existed a short enough tower heatsink with fins parallel to the motherboard, I’d feel a lot better. Otherwise, of the top and front fans, one won’t be blowing in the right direction. That makes me worry about being able to turn a Seasonic X650 around, or even go with an X460 when it hits.

          What I’m thinking, though, is to just seal off that top vent, and use an X460 with the vented side mounted facing the CPU. Then use something like an AXP140 or Shuriken with a fan blowing down, ducted to the PSU to draw air through it. Then have the front fan blowing out to draw air in from near the graphics card (GTX460 Cyclone) and prevent hot spots, and away from the CPU area.

          I’m worried that the air from the PSU would be too hot, but if that’s the case I can flip the PSU and leave the top vent open but fanless. I wanted to keep the CPU passive, but if I can remove the fan from both the top and the PSU (which with an X650 would have been semi-passive anyway,) that would be an acceptable tradeoff. Or maybe if I don’t duct to the CPU and leave the top vent at least partially open, that will compensate enough.

          I’ll have to come up with some ideas for the V354 and that Lan Gear case which I just discovered, and decide which has the best potential for me.

            • Voldenuit
            • 9 years ago

            Scythe Ninja Mini. It’s hard to find these days, but is still a great HSF, if you can live with the mounting mechanism (you only need to do it once, right?).

            Oh, and don’t expect it to cool a 125W CPU.

            The V354’s biggest advantage over the V351 in my mind is that the motherboard tray is not removable (yes, you heard that right), because most of the component selection limitations boil down to having to fit things through the cutouts when sliding it in and out.

            • Ethyriel
            • 9 years ago

            Honestly, I never even considered the V351, I guess I just don’t like the layout much.

            I’m not sure the Ninja Mini would quite fit in the Q08, but I’m not quite sure since Lian-Li doesn’t seem to advertise a clearance spec. Have you seen a success story on that?

            • Voldenuit
            • 9 years ago

            Sorry, not sure if the Ninja Mini will fit in the Q08, but it will fit in the V351 without any mods.

            If you’re really worried about space, the Scythe Big Shuriken is like 65mm tall and cools like a small tower with minimal noise. If you have more room, you can also consider replacing the half-height fan with a standard 120 or 140mm fan to either increase the cooling efficiency or reduce noise (which is already pretty low to start with).

            • Ethyriel
            • 9 years ago

            Unfortunately, the Big Shuriken won’t fit on the Gigabyte H55N motherboard I’m looking at. The Shuriken will, but so will the AXP140 so long as I mount it with washers and nuts instead of the backplate. The thing I like about the AXP140 is that it’s fins are entirely above the top of the RAM, so I think I’ll get better results pulling air away from it with the front fan.

            I think that’s what I’ll probably end up going with, but who knows what will happen before Seasonic releases the X-460 next month.

      • cegras
      • 9 years ago

      With cases like this or the Q08, the answer is H50 and forget. Or Coolit Eco.

        • Ethyriel
        • 9 years ago

        I may be behind the times, but I really don’t trust water in my case, and honestly don’t believe that a pump can be acceptably quiet to my ears.

          • flip-mode
          • 9 years ago

          I think they are pretty quiet, but I’d be more worried about pump failure. That’d suck. Prolly wouldn’t kill any components, but would be a major hassle.

    • Voldenuit
    • 9 years ago

    Hm… I had originally looked at the PC-V351 for a SFF build for my GF, but discarded it because it couldn’t fit the passive 5750 I wanted. Switched my attention to the Silverstone Grandia GD05 instead.

    The new V354 looks interesting, let’s hope it’s as quiet as the GD05 (which was lauded at spcr for quietness).

    • Thresher
    • 9 years ago

    That Lian Li case would make a HELLUVA small server box. Put an Atom based system in there with a RAID card and you could have a very nice NAS.

      • Usacomp2k3
      • 9 years ago

      Agreed. WHS would work great in that. 14TB of storage.

    • Deanjo
    • 9 years ago

    Looks like a case for my next media server.

    • BiffStroganoffsky
    • 9 years ago

    Prices dammit, we need prices.

      • sheltem
      • 9 years ago

      I don’t know how accurate this is, but several sites are indicating $180-$200 depending on your color choice.

    • FuturePastNow
    • 9 years ago

    That Lina-Li case is hot. Seven hard drive bays? USB 3 ports on the front? Would make an awesome little fileserver.

    • flip-mode
    • 9 years ago

    I’m not liking that Lian Li case at all. What’s the point? It’s just short, not exactly what I’d call “small”. That thing is wider than Rosie O’Donnell. I guess I’d like to see it compared to a full sized case. The thing is definitely wider than any case I’ve ever had, but shorter. So does being shorter make it more desirable for some reason? 240mm = 9.65 inches. My Antec Sonata III is 200mm.

    I like it’s shortness, but I wish it was slimmer.

      • Chrispy_
      • 9 years ago

      “I wish it was slimmer” is a bit like asking for an anorexic to lose some weight – there’d be no space for the internal organs.

      Rosie could lose weight without problems, but if you slim down a tower you have to put the power supply directly next to the CPU. That mandates noisy, barely-capaple slimline air-coolers or something like a watercooler where you don’t need clearance immediately above the LGA socket.

      Best hope we’ve got these days for a slim, small case is an ITX motherboard with power supply below it and the whole case shorter by the difference of ATX and ITX.

      • shank15217
      • 9 years ago

      Why do you think this would have to replace, or be “better” than any of their other cases? Short, wide and full of drive bays will appeal to some people and those are the buyers they would get. They already have slimmer cases, in fact they have more case models than most other case makers combined!

    • Duck
    • 9 years ago

    Little trick for the Antec Shelf… bend out the heatpipes 90 degrees and the heatsink fins will sit just in front of the 120mm case fan. I have done this with a gelid silent spirit and it is extremely effective and super quiet way of cooling your rig.

    • bdwilcox
    • 9 years ago

    When they say they’re ‘whisper quiet’ is that Dr. Nick Riviera Juice Loosener ‘whisper quiet’?

    • elmopuddy
    • 9 years ago

    That may be my next case, if I can find a mATX board that can do SLI..

      • Bauxite
      • 9 years ago

      There have been x58 mATX boards that can do 2×16 sli for over a year now.

      Various 2×8 board in both camps have paid the fee to enable it as well.

    • potatochobit
    • 9 years ago

    when you guys do future fan tests I would like to see the frio included
    and that one antec on the left looks formidable

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