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/u/zocazola - "NR200P ver. Z" (Performance and Aesthetics)


Jason Liu
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This is my first mod I've ever done to a PC and I'm excited to join the community! The NR200 seemed like a beautiful case with lots of modular components that could be adapted. I wanted to make mods that could be widely distributed to the community-- addressing the community's issues with the NR200. I've made my mod parts available for free on Thingiverse for anyone to duplicate and make for themselves, and have been iterating with user feedback since my initial post on reddit. With direct community feedback and my ability to rapidly iterate, I call this mod the next generation of the NR200P- the "ver. Z"

 

Here's my build log and story:

 

I really wanted to make impactful additions to the NR200 that the community has asked for. I scoured reviews of the NR200, /r/sffpc, /r/buildapc, and youtubers (shout out to OptimumTech, MachinesAndMore). From my research, I found some design limitations and user needs:

  1. Inability to mount a full thickness radiator and fans to the top of the case
    1. You can mount a radiator on the side of the case, but then you miss out on seeing inside the case- so all that RGB goodness is gone :(
    2. You can mount a radiator on the bottom of the case, but then you shorten the lifespan of your AIO as the pump is at the top of the loop and air accumulates there.
    3. The thin rad/fan combinations that DO fit (TX240, slim fans) have limited cooling capability, and really bottleneck the cpu/gpu thermally. I've had some users of my mod report back that my mod cuts their temps by 20C. Insane. 
  2. Inability to mount 140mm fans at the bottom of the case for increased airflow
    1. You can mount 120mm fans, and 140mm fans could fit but no mounting points exist for them
  3. People don't want to have to drill/cut/file down parts of their case in fear of permanent damage.
    1. There is an inverted case mod that works to essentially flip the internals upside-down, making the radiator "top mountable", HOWEVER, users didn't like that they had to drill out a couple rivets and file down a structural component of the case to make this work. Irreversible damage to the case is a no-no for some.

 

 

Armed with my CAD software of choice, calipers, and my CR-10 mini 3D printer, I got to work trying to make solutions for these needs.

 

My PC's Specs:

  • CASE: NR200P WHITE
  • CPU: Ryzen 3800X
  • CPU Cooler: CoolerMaster ML240R v2 240mm AIO
  • GPU: Nvidia 2070 Super Founders Edition
  • Motherboard: Asus Strix B450I
  • PSU: 650W EVGA GM
  • RAM: Corsair vengeance 3600mhz 16gb dual channel.
  • RGB: Custom, soldered from strips myself.

 

 

Here's the finished product here just to skip to the final product: 

white-showcase-acrylic.jpg

Edited by Jason Liu
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This was my first attempt to top mount the radiator to see if it was stable. Not quite space optimized, and everything is hanging out. As a dry-test of just the mechanics, I found it to work out pretty well. I was exploring how best to minimally mount these parts without needing to permanently mod the case frame itself-- my mods are completely NON-DESCTRUCTIVE AND 100% REVERSIBLE!

 

In the next post I will show how I'm able to mount things to the frame of the case without the need to drill or anything. I used the existing mounting points and adapted them :)

PXL_20201222_012714988 (1).jpg

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Modding mounting points on the NR200

 

This is the inner mechanical frame of the NR200- Pretty elegant design, great job CM team! What I love the most about this design is 4 of the core mechanical parts of this case are 100% copies of each other, making my modding easier as I can count on the positioning of holes to be exactly the same.

Can you spot them? :) 

 

nr200frame.JPG.146a00100635394c7d40dced8b6b7153.JPG

 

On these 4 identical rails of the NR200, there are the same repeated holes and slots that can be used to mount mods to. Here's a zoom-in of the top four positions I use to mount the tophat

mountingpoints.thumb.png.8e5a2c6a795905a81533e33b548fd4ab.png

 

This repeated roundhole-rectangular slot-roundhole pattern can be exploited well! And can be exploited for the bottom of the case as well, where I mount a custom panel for 140mm fan mounting. 

 

One more thing to note is-- these rectangular slots are exploitable as snap fit joints. They are originally able to be combined with these small panel clips that snap onto ball joints on the case panels:

clips.JPG.c9250d6b6261f32a219e8664cb3ce675.JPG

 

So, I designed a part that snapfits in place similar to that of the above plastic clips. This part provides M3 machine screw holes in the repeated roundhole-rectangular slot-roundhole pattern to secure things to the case frame!

PXL_20210121_025042582.thumb.jpg.e11b0fa3f199f4538bb9a21ffc8cc41b.jpg

 

This innovative design is essentially the backbone of my entire mod. 

 

Here's a photo of one of these mounting clips in one of the positions-

PXL_20210106_152020997.PORTRAIT.thumb.jpg.c08b9ca8bdd18b55daa780f4aae82159.jpgPXL_20210106_152039628.PORTRAIT.thumb.jpg.3714d7fa4a4afa847a7aa0da07ce3365.jpg

Edited by Jason Liu
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Integration :)

So, I kept CADing and 3D printing and optimizing the design with a couple key themes:

  1. Minimize 3D printing time by reducing part size
  2. Design the parts with minimal supports
  3. Minimize space utilization- keep faith with the SMALL FORM FACTOR design
  4. Push myself to have my printer running non-stop and overnight to maximize iteration rate

Here's a compilation of previous iterations before I landed on my final design:

 

1755881499_PXL_20201225_233834935(2).thumb.jpg.4a01538781edf8f7352cd439d03ffcab.jpg

notes on this build iteration: This suspends the rad and fans such that it minimizes space used! Also pictured is my side-panel mod for the NR200

584355192_PXL_20201226_034925509(1).thumb.jpg.d4a00ab1421a120a7f51cbb9be79c324.jpgPXL_20201227_045002060.thumb.jpg.132e5115750f8190af74aa978b89c54b.jpgPXL_20210104_222925232.thumb.jpg.768697531f476982bfdb3db3bde9f898.jpg

notes on this build iteration: I realized I don't need to mount all 8 points on the radiator and fans- so I just focused on the 4 corners. This worked well, and this was my first attempt on making the top bezel fit. Also, I tried to throw in some excessive RGB and see what would happen :D

 

Also note: I really needed to fix up the lines and fit to make sure the panels are tight- this was a failure in the right direction though!

PXL_20210105_142309979.thumb.jpg.216555e65eea48f1fef698d34f935e3b.jpg

 

Then, I NAILED it. Pics below:PXL_20210113_164658251.PORTRAIT.thumb.jpg.b80fb5d5253f1745214c08edcba4ee24.jpg

PXL_20210118_174719600.PORTRAIT.thumb.jpg.1f88ebf37189901f6e3cfaf49e736989.jpgPXL_20210120_000551894.thumb.jpg.2fb8456ad5cd8446c7b73cec6f226fde.jpg

 

 

I even was able to design in an acrylic window just to show that I'm running that Coolermaster ML240R V2 All-in-One CLC CPU Cooler 

 

And was able to nail a Control theme to it as well- 

 

white-showcase-acrylic.thumb.jpg.7102d0e60f0d6a0d5052a32c794346fa.jpg

Edited by Jason Liu
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Bottom 140mm mod notes

 

So, I exploited the same repeated hole-slot-hole mounting points on the NR200 I used for the top hat... on the bottom of the case so that I could get more airflow into the case. Two 120mm fans and the slotted panel was passable, but not optimal for airflow. Making two 140mm fans fit with larger slots on a custom panel sounded much nicer.

 

Original bottom panel:

724594407_nr200bottom.thumb.jpeg.ad80f8234a0897f2affb73afab93973c.jpeg

 

My design- laser cut acrylic designed in Adobe Illustrator, and custom feet designed to be similar to that of the original NR200 feet. Used 2x Arctic P14 fans. 

PXL_20210115_234222791.thumb.jpg.c8de384c1e341b712aa7d269d66236ba.jpg

 

Temps dropped, and it's a lot less noisy. 

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RGB Notes:

This was my first time making RGB strips from scratch. I was ambitious, and learned a lot-

 

Here's my soldering setup at home... I don't have a professional setup at all but tried my best.

 

PXL_20210120_051023366.thumb.jpg.f688d612feb6bff9efaad14612147f4c.jpg

 

Then, i tested it and it didn't seem to work. Turns out, ARGB strips are DIRECTIONAL.... so I needed to go back and redo my soldering job.

I went to a workbench with a better soldering iron and surface and got much cleaner results. Using tape to hold down the strips to solder really helped as well. Highly recommend.

 

PXL_20210120_155418303.thumb.jpg.98f75a773b66efa70da4c483ebe73c70.jpg

 

End result:

 

PXL_20210120_052618891.thumb.jpg.59e190cd80d74e5279224dc87913330a.jpg1461312606_PXL_20210121_020420892.PORTRAIT(1).thumb.jpg.e96ae2c8c948e574bc31b61cca4bf3a2.jpg

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