HDPLEX Fanless PC Case

Monthly Archives: October 2013

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC with ASROCK motherboard, i3-2125 CPU, SSD

Original review from HDPLEX fanless HTPC case forum

Finally had time to put my HDPLEX H3.SODD passive HTPC case together yesterday. Used an ASROCK motherboard, i3-2125 CPU, & SSD. All went well except 2 issues.

1. The Power & LED cables provided were just short of being able to reach the connectors on the ASROCK H67M-ITX which is on the extreme corner of the motherboard. Didn’t have any spare ones around so had to splice in a couple more inches to reach the connectors.

2. System didn’t power up. After removing un-needed components, with no success, I tried a spare ATX power supply I had and it booted right off. After a couple of voltage measurements, I found the power harness was at fault. Most of the wires coming off the 12 pin connector have a single wire which is spliced off into multiple wires. The Yellow wire was the exception where the tried to force 2 wires into the 12 pin connector. One of these wires was not making contact. I removed the second wire and spliced it in further up the wire and everything started to work.

H3.SODD fanless PC case

System is working fine now. Idle power hovering in the 38-42 range with 50’s under peak load. Need to finish up loading Windows 7 32-bit and hook it up via HDMI to my TV.

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC with Zotac mini-ITX board Intel Core CPU

Original Review from HDPLEX fanless HTPC case forum

HDPLEX H3.SODD fanless PC case Installation questions, suggestions, and Pictures
Larry, thanks a million- no, wait, that’s not enough, thanks a billion! Everything is absolutely beautiful, so much so that I had to get my hands dirty IMMEDIATELY- couldn’t wait till Friday afternoon. Build is almost done, pics to follow within a day or two. Already powered up, and sure enough (unsurprisingly), silent. No temps to report yet since I’m still assembling last pieces, probably finishing tomorrow.

Re: packaging- absolutely top notch! Instructions are good, each major piece is in its own individual baggie with appropriate screws so you know EXACTLY which parts are used to mount the PSU to the case, or the heatpipe securing plates to the side panel, or the heatsink to the CPU- all manufacturers should strive for this level of organization. Top-notch work again, Larry, thanks again!

H3.SODD HTPC fanless case

H3.SODD HTPC fanless case

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC with Zotac Z68-ITX WiFi (Z68ITX-A-E) Core i5 2500T

Original review from HDPLEX fanless HTPC case forum

Here’s my new toy:

H3.SODD silent passive HTPC case with Zotac Z68-ITX

And it’s made of:
H3.SODD Fanless Chassis, with 80W Open Frame Fanless PSU
Zotac Z68-ITX WiFi (Z68ITX-A-E)
Intel Sandy Bridge Core i5 2500T 2.5GHz 6MB 45W 32nm Quad Core
G.Skill Kit Extreme3 2 x 8 Go PC12800 Ripjaws X CAS10
Samsung SSD (MMDOE28G5MPP)
M4-CT064M4SSD2Crucial m4 2.5-inch (M4-CT064M4SSD2)
WD Scorpio Blue (WDC WD2500BEVT-7)

It’s going to run either VMware ESXi or Joyent SmartOS.
Not sure yet… I still have to test a few things.

Thanks HD-Plex for this great enclosure!

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC i7-3770T ASRock Z77E-ITX 128 GB Samsung 830 SSD

Original Review from HDPLEX Fanless Computer case forum

ictures (I hope) of my build in the public album and where it will sit in my AV rack – H3 at top, current blu ray player to go to bottom.

Build is

HDPLEX H3.SODD fanless PC case
ASRock z77e-itx
8G Samsung green memory (very low profile – recommended)
128 GB Samsung 830 SSD
Sony Blu-ray (cannot remember model)

I have improved the cable management slightly since the pictures.

H3.SODD fanless PC with ASRock Z77E-ITX

H3.SODD fanless PC with ASRock Z77E-ITX

Idle temperatures (after 1 hour of idling) are +18C over ambient (39C) which I am happy with. However, if you are prepared to stick a slow running 80 mm fan (900RPM or less) on top of case that will come down by about 3C for very little noise.

If building again I would want to make a couple of changes. Move the SSD to under the blu ray (velcro is wonderful) and extend my cable management mod all the way up the right side of case for a cleaner build.

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC with ASROCK Z68M-ITX Core i3 2125 Ceton USB Turner Crucial Ballistix 4GB

Original review from Missing Remote

I just finished building a fanless HTPC. Here are my components:

HD-Plex H3.SODD Fanless HTPC Chassis
HD-Plex 150W Fanless Power Supply External
Internal IR receiver with MCE Remote Control(RC6) (from HD-Plex)
Lite On 4ETS slot loading bluray combo drive (from HD-Plex)
OCZ Solid 3 SATA III 6Gbps 2.5″ SSD 60GB
SAMSUNG Spinpoint M8 HN-M101MBB 1TB 5400 RPM 8MB Cache 2.5″ SATA 3.0Gb/s
Crucial Ballistix 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600)
Intel Core i3-2125
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Ceton InfiniTV4 USB
Once I got all components that I ordered through HD-Plex, Amazon and Newegg The assemply was pretty traight forward. HD-Plex had good documantation on mounting the heatsink and heatpipes for cooling.

The only issues I had was; I had to move my SSD due to conflict with the eject button; The wires for power button and LED is streached to a maximum because of the placement of connectors on the MB (see picture)

After installing and configuring Win7 MCE, the biggest challange was to get Time Warner to understand what they needed to do. What I could have done on the phone with TW in five minutes (assuming I talked to a sensible person) took them 3 hours on site. Most of the time on the phone. Anyway, at the end they did wha I asked them to do and everything worked. Including the SDV.

Now I enjoy up to four channels in paralell (live and record) and no noise from my home theatre. I also have a Pioneer AV receiver and Panasonic Plasma TV connected with HDMI.

After a couple of weeks using this setup, the max temperature I have seen on the CPU is 58 degrees C.

My next project will be to build another system as extender for the bedroom.

I can recommend this setup to anyone that can build a PC.

(BTW, the HD-plex HTPC replace a PS3, Tivo and Netgear media player)

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC ASUS P8H77-i and i7-3770S 128 gb Crucial M4 SSD Lite on Philips 4ETS Blu ray drive

Orignal Review from HDPLEX Fanless HTPC case forum


Here are the picture of my recently build PC using fanless HDPLEX H3.SODD silent HTPC case

H3.SODD with Lite ON bluray drive

H3.SODD with Lite ON bluray drive

H3.SODD with Lite ON bluray drive

I have installed:
8GB G skill 1600MHz CL7 (higly recommended)
128 gb Crucial M4 SSD
Lite on Philips 4ETS Blu ray drive

I have changed the chipset heatskink and added enzotech mosfet coolers.
Thanks larry for the support and the perfectly silent PSU you ve supplied.

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC ASRock Z68M-ITX/HT Intel i5-2500T Sony BC-5650H-01 80W Fanless PSU

Original Review from HDPLEX Fanless Computer case Forum

Got my build up and running two weeks ago. I left it running 24/7 and no problems/issues at all. It is great enclosure – looks great, feels great (heavy, solid, like the power amps we used to build in Hi-Fi heydays). Instills real sense of pride/ownership I must say!

It is going to be both HTPC (home theater PC using WMC (for now, might look at other software later)) and HA-PC (home automation PC; installed Z-wave USB controller and HomeSeer HSPRO).

I looked around a lot for components so here are my choices. I have compared multiple other passive cases (Streacom, Zeno, HFX) and this one blows them away with features and even price (amazing). USB 3.0/2.0 option and internal industrial grade power supply make it really unique. I decided against internal TV tuner so this case works great – at the end now I really prefer Ethernet TV tuner as it can be shared easily among multiple PCs (wishing/hoping for Android client in the near future).

Case: HDPLEX H3.SODD fanless HTPC case
CPU: Intel i5-2500T 45W (to match 80W internal supply)
MEM – Corsair CML8GX3M2A1600C9 w/ heat spreader, low profile
SSD (OS): Intel 520 2.5″ 120GB
HDD (storage, hybrid drive): Seagate Momentus XT ST750LX003 750GB 2.5″
Blu-ray reader: Sony BC-5650H-01
Other (external): Silicon Dust HD Home Run Dual TV tuner, Home Seer Z-wave Controller

**Notes from physical build
Be careful with screws as aluminum is tender – do not over tighten (that said none of my screws had issues but I am experienced DIYer and careful)
Had to add plastic washers to ODD eject button screws on top of existing nuts, otherwise board was too close to button and button was always pressed ON
Power switch was falling out when pressed (too short), added 4 layers of duct tape and it is not falling into case any more
Should have used black ties (blue ones are too visible thru case openings)
IR plug goes into USB headers on MB, initially tried to use CIR header and it didn’t work
Bought longer cable for PWR/LED, provided ones too short: http://www.pchcables.com/241.html
Front USB port should be moved higher to enable adding HDD, there is plenty of space to raise it higher. Current height prevents even 2.5″ HDD installation
SSD was installed under ODD, hybrid HDD on the left most side for ease of wiring (same power cable as ODD)
**Notes from media software/OS installations
Boot up into BIOS (only short time to select this option), setup AHCI (see MB UserGuide), setup ODD as first priority for boot
AHCI *must* be setup BEFORE OS installation
Installed Win7 from DVD *without* 750GB drive connected (with it connected Win used both drives for installation)
Installed drivers for ASROCK MB
Restarted HTPC
Ran Win user experience index, showed 5.9 for graphics (it was 1.0 without drivers)
Installed eject button driver
Tested IR remote, worked fine without installing any driver (for now using remote that came with Asrock MB)
Ran windows update which included IE9 which restared HTPC
Installed Silicon Dust software and scanned channels using SD software
Shut down, installed 750GB drive, rebooted and formatted drive using Device Manager
Tuned power management states and HDD spindown
Added network drive where media is stored (using account that has no write permissions)
Installed flash player (IE request)
Enabled DLNA/sharing in Windows Media Player
Started Windows Media Center and did setup for tuner and network libraries (probably easier to do in WMP since interface in WMC is too simple -> to many selects/clicks)
Notes for HDPLEX — (for readers: these are MINOR, don’t let these persuade you to use another case :-)

ODD eject button is not easy to adjust correctly – need a better system or provide washers with proper thickness
Power button is also not easy to adjust – needs to be taller/stick out more
Both would be better off with some kind of spring system or use full switch with wires instead of plastic pieces that push against switches soldered on the boards
USB port – would be really nice to move it higher to enable using the 3rd drive bay
POWER/LED cables need to be longer (24 inch, http://www.pchcables.com/241.html) … I know some MB don’t need this but many do and longer won’t hurt … luckily I live close to PCH cables and they carry such exotic stuff (they do ship as well)

HDPLEX H3.SODD Fanless PC with ASUS P8H67 ITX Intel core i5 2400S Samsung 128GB SSD

Original Review from HD-PLEX Fanless HTPC case Forum

Hi guys,

Just wanted to share the details of my build and ask opinions about temperatures under stress.

Asus P8H67-i Deluxe
Intel i5 2400S (65W)
2 x Corsair 4gb 1333MHz DDR3
Samsung 128GB SSD 830 series
HDPlex H3.SODD fanless passive HTPC case
Win XP 32-bit (as I had it lying around). Might upgrade to Win 7 64-bit.

This computer has to be 100% reliable as it will be doing mission critical data-logging and processing. So firstly I’ve basically left it at the un-overclocked standard settings, turned off any power settings and turned off the processor’s Turbo mode.

I’m stress testing using the Blend setting of Prime95 with Realtime priority. Logging temperatures is harder than I thought it would be: Asus’ own software gives different numbers than speed fan. Seems to be some kind of aggregate? Anyway, after an hour of Prime95 we have:

Asus AI Suite
CPU: 58C
Motherboard: 60C

Cores: 69C, 68C, 70C, 71C
Motherboard: 60C
Above RAM slots: 59C

So, the CPU temp seems okay. But how is this motherboard temp? I might also try reinstating some of the power saving features for idle time.

Okay, I’ve been doing some testing and my gut is that the 80W internal power supply might be insufficient.

I was reading this post ( http://hdplex.com/forum/showpos…0&postcount=10 ) and see that a 35W TDP processor in a similar system to mind is asking for 42W during prime. Looking at the specs. of the 80W supply, it’s actually a 60W supply in this setup as there is no air cooling, and since my m/b was up at 60C we could be looking at around 46W maximum power output (60 x 0.975^10). And, of course, my processor is 65W TDP so could easily need an extra 10W or so juice under stress.

Might be totally irrelevant, but also the 12V rail is quite low according to the BIOS at 11.6V.

I’m trying an overnight Prime95 now with an ATX from another desktop, so let’s see if that crashes. The only problem is, I can’t close the case so the MB temp will be different. But if we’re stable in the morning, I guess I’m one step closer!

Oh, and Merry Christmas!

Just a final post to share my conclusions if it’s helpful for anyone building a similar system to mine. In the end it looks likely that the internal 80W power supply is not a *quite* sufficient for use in this system combination and useage. It might well be fine for HTPC use, but it’s not stable under any settings for number crunching or anything requiring the GPU to work hard.

I’m going to try out the PicoPSU option now, and maybe try and sell the 80W supply on ebay (or, more likely, throw it away). Good luck with your own builds!


Original Review from AVS Forum

H3.SODD with Zotac ITX motherboard

H3.SODD with Zotac ITX motherboard

H3.SODD with Zotac ITX motherboard

H3.SODD with Zotac ITX motherboard

System config

Case: H3.SODD Fanless HTPC Chassis 248 USD
PSU: Industrial 80W AC-DC ATX Fanless Power Supply 58 USD
Motherboard: ZOTAC Z68ITX-A-E LGA 1155 Intel Z68 165USD
Processor: Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core 125USD
Memory: Kingston ValueRAM 4GB (2 x 2GB) KVR1333D3N9K2/4G 32 USD
HDD1 (System): OCZ Vertex 3 VTX3-25SAT3-60G 2.5″ 60GB SATA III 105 USD
HDD2 (Data): Western Digital Caviar Green WD20EARX 2TB 170USD
Drive: Lite-On DL-4ETS Bluray Combo Drive 78 USD
IR Receiver: Internal IR receiver with MCE Remote Control(RC6) 18 USD

Total: 999 USD (funny, isn’t it)

A few considerations:

I wanted my system to:
– work as a HTPC
– act as a router for my small home network
– serve as a http server – light load only ofc
– be as silent as possible
– consume as little power as possible
– look nice and blend with my other stuff in the cabinet

I also considered that SATA III and USB 3.0 should be mandatory.

H3.SODD Fanless HTPC Chassis is a very nice case and it’s TOTALLY SILENT. I mean I have to check the power light to see if the computer is on.
Beware that this case needs a little space around it to have a little bit of airflow. If you use it for HTPC/router purposes I highly recommend it.
Also it does have a USB 3.0 port on the front which is very good (and rare). Also it is very nice.
I would have bought the H3.S case (which is the same but without the slot loadind bluray) but it was not available.

ZOTAC Z68ITX-A-E LGA 1155 Intel Z68 is totally overkill for a HTPC build, but I need a motherboard with:
-two Gigabit ports (remember the router function)
-USB 3.0
-HDMI output
-miniITX form factor
-Sandy Bridge platform
The Zotac was the only one I could find.

Intel Core i3-2100 is also too much, but could not find in my area a 2100T in a reasonable amount of time. 2100T it’s the same proc but restricted to 2.5Ghz max freq, hence 35W.

OCZ Vertex 3 is also totally overkill, because you can use the mSATA port of the ZOTAC for a smaller mSATA drive. But could not find one at the moment.
Anyway any SSD solution is too much, because this system will boot once and act as a router for a very long time. So the speed of the SSD is not used. After a while when I’ll build my next
system I’ll get rid of the OCZ and make a partition on the Western Digital for the Ubuntu system.

I bought the blu-ray drive only because of the case. IMHO I consider that bluray distribution will silently fade away.
Normally I would go with the H3.S case, but not available.

================================================== ============
A few tests:

Operating system, Ubuntu 11.10 minimal & Xserver
All temperatures measurements at 24C ambient & WITH THE CASE IN THE CABINET AS IN THE PICTURE.
Power consumption measured at the wall.

– idle, Intel Core i3 2100 3.1Ghz ondemand (will scale down to 1.6Ghz), —— 29W, 49°C
– xbmc 11.0 Eden beta1 – 1080p h264 hardware playback (vaapi & intel linux graphics) —- 36W, 57°C
– prime95, 4 cores, blend test, 90 min run, Intel Core i3 2100 3.1Ghz, ondemand (will scale up to 3.1Ghz) —- 70W, 86°C

As I mentioned all the tests are done with case in the cabine with a somewhat restricted airflow.
If I place the case on a table, in “open space” temps are:

– idle 43°C
– prime95 75°C


HDPLEX H1.S fanless HTPC case configuration for mini-ITX Part 1

HDPLEX H1.S fanless Computer case support mini-ITX motherboard and 2 x 2.5″ SSD/HDD hard drive.

In this part, heatpipe and 2.5″ HDD/SSD are explained.

H1.S has symmetrical heatpipe groove on both sides, give customer the freedom of arranging heatpipe pattern based on different mini-ITX motherboard.

The six heatpipes usually are installed three on each side to balance the heat dissipation task on both side of the chassis heatsink fin panel.
Sometimes, one heatpipe might be blocked by the 24PIN ATX plug on the mini-ITX motherboard such as this Gigabyte board in picture below:

HDPLEX H1.S fanless computer case for mini-ITX

In this scenario, customer could install four heatpipes on one side and two heatpipes on the other side. Still enjoying the six heatpipe advantage in cooling CPU upto 75W TDP.

HDPLEX H1.S fanless computer case for mini-ITX

The 2.5″ HDD/SSD rack can accomdate two 2.5″ HDD/SSD.

The HDD rack would be installed on the HDPLEX heatsink top aluminum cover via four M3 screws on the M3 copper post.

HDPLEX H1.S fanless computer case for mini-ITX

HDPLEX H1.S fanless computer case for mini-ITX