Cooler / Case for X570-D4U-2L2T + 5950X

Lelandt50

New Member
Nov 29, 2020
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So I'm getting the final pieces together for my NAS build. Just got my AsRock Rack X570-D4U-2L2T, already had my 5950X, and now I need a CPU cooler. My priorities go as follows:
1) Reliability, this server is going to host my NAS which will hold very important data. (I'm not sure if this rules out AIO liquid)
2) Clearance for all the RAM slots. I'm starting with 2 32GB ECC Ram sticks but will eventually populate all the slots.
3) Noise. I live in an apartment and the server will live in my bed room or my living room. I'd rather not have this thing sound like a turbo jet.
4) Cost, I'm willing to budget at most about $200 bucks for the cooler.

Now for the case:
I have a fractal design R5 waiting to put the build into, but was considering getting a rack mount case. I see some 4U cases from rosewill that have room for 12 or even 15 3.5" drives, and was wondering if anyone had any feedback on the case. Is it worth buying a rackmount case? I currently have 6 8TB 7200RPM 3.5" HDDs for the RAID array, but would like room for expansion. I have an LSI 9200-8i HBA and the 8 onboard SATA ports, so I have a lot of room to grow. Thanks in advance for any feedback.
 

svtkobra7

Active Member
Jan 2, 2017
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So I'm getting the final pieces together for my NAS build. Just got my AsRock Rack X570-D4U-2L2T, already had my 5950X, and now I need a CPU cooler. My priorities go as follows:
I see some similarities between my most recent build and a similar "where the heck do I stash my rack-mount server conundrum," so I'm happy to share a few thoughts, but they are probably of limited assistance.
  • I recently built a AMD 5950x + 4x 32GB DDR4 SO-DIMMs + Quadro RTX 5000 on an ASRock Rack X570D4I-2T cooled by a Alphacool 11445 Eisbaer LT240 in a push (NF-A12x25 PWM - Noctua) / pull (NF-A12x15 PWM - Noctua) config, all wrapped in an NCASE M1.
  • I wanted to do a m-ITX SFF build and originally planned to run ESXi on it with the use case being both a workstation (Win10 with USB and GPU in pass-through), but also to pull vCenter Server off my two rack mount chassis. Haven't gotten that piece finished yet, though.
  • My board gets a lot of hate (primarily from those favoring SFF builds) due to lack of USB ports, no WiFi (whatevs), 260 pin DDR4 instead of 288 pin (a necessary evil given the density of the board), only 1 M.2 port, AM4 socket but mounting for a INTL 1156 heat-sink, need for plentiful front to rear airflow, no audio chip set, no RGB (boo hoo), etc. But haters gonna hate. ;)
  • It is a server board, all aforementioned points are moot, and it is so unorthodox and well engineered, that I'd love to meet the design team.
  • For me, it was the perfect board, and it wasn't any compromise in exchange for 2x10 GbE; 2x Oculink ports; IPMI; etc. and I'm not sure there is any other m-ITX X570 offer on the market that compares (at least for my intended use case).
I digress ... back on target ...

I tried a NH-C14S - Noctua first, but it couldn't keep temps in check, so I threw an AIO loop in there. The risk is non-zero, but if this data is of the utmost importance, as mentioned, hopefully you have some offsite backup strategy (or intend to deploy one), making the risk of running an AIO loop less of a concern. I should mention that cooler is the wrong choice for a rack-mount chassis as it will be pushing air directly at the lid (to state the obvious). I didn't have much Z-height to work with in SFF form factor and I'm not sure how many air coolers which would fit in my case would properly get the job done without throttling. But if you take the rack-mount path, and go 4U, you should be fine. My servers are 2U, and I have 4x E5-2690 v2 fitted with SNK-P0048AP4s and they are loud under load (nearly inaudible with the closet door closed thankfully). In your case you have 2U of extra height to fit a larger heat-sink and fan, so that increased surface area and larger diameter fan (92mm fan instead of 65mm fan (i.e. 2U v 4U) - I believe) comparatively delivers higher CFM at lower RPM, et ceteris paribus. The X570-D4U-2L2T is clearly a server board designed to live in a rack-mount chassis with front to rear airflow and will be easier to cool in the chassis it was designed for.

A 5950x is bringing the heat (literally) for a filer, and not that it is a bad thing, but IMO overkill. And if this is build is just to serve NAS duty, I'm not sure there is any real benefit to what I might best convey via doge coin meme ....

5i8kha.jpg
(sorry I'm addicted to making stupid doge coin memes and literally cannot help myself)

Is it worth buying a rackmount case?
My vote = rack-mount. I'm partial to SMCI so I would give their 4U chassis a look before pulling the trigger. Personally, I'm not sure I would want a rack-mount server in my bedroom (and preferably not my living room either) ... I think that is a question only you can answer as the benefits of going rack-mount are obvious, but the costs (noise and larger size) may be a constant reminder of the trade-off. It sounds like you have already made up your mind, but just want validation as to the feasibility of a rack-mount chassis. I'd say go for it and the peeps here are far smarter than myself and surely willing to help you manage thermals without going deaf. And you definitely won't have to go through the a$$-hattery of mounting a server upside down as I did.

Just to share my humble lab, and having been in your shoes living in a condo, with not so many great places to mount a rack, I had to get super creative in an epic battle I fought against noise & heat. This was my first go at playing with rack-mount toys (moving off COTS NAS solutions), so if I could figure it out, I'm certain you can.

It took some creativity and a lot of work. First I stripped the "server-closet" to the studs and added Rockwool Safe N Sound sound abatement insulation. While the wall innards were exposed, I reinforced flimsy arse metal studs with 2x4 + 2x6 blocking. After annoying the entire floor with a rotary hammer drill to sink some concrete screws in, that wall isn't budging. Prior to re-sheetrocking, I added a bathroom fan to the ceiling to dump the warm air elsewhere. There were better options, but I chose this route as when I sell, I don't have to remove the fan which looks more like a light and moves a measly 110 CFM, but still gets the job done. Not rated for 24/7 operation, but she has been spinning for 3 years without issue now. Finally, I mounted on a plywood panel fastened with a french cleat (for ease of removal). Air intake comes from underneath the door. I maintain low 30°Cs for 24x 14 TB HDDs. I have no clue wher I got this idea, but I mounted a 4u vertical rack at the front of the rails and another at the rear. Essentially creating a home-brew 4 post rack. Those 24 HDDs live their lives in constant fear of the 12" plummet to death, given that they face floor, but at least they get nice dense, cool air. As to the obvious question, what it you drop a drive on the floor? Knock on wood. As with any decision you always have trade offs and here the largest one is the fact that it is a beyotch to service the chassis against the plywood because I have to remove the one in front of it to gain access. But I wanted rack-mount chassis they didn't cause hearing loss or die from thermal runaway and i eventually got there.

PXL_20210730_203815275.jpg

NB: I don't have enough info to suggest that the Alphacool 11445 Eisbaer LT240 is the AIO loop for you, but if you go that route, I bought two (one for another project which I decided not to use it in) and that spare only has about 24 hours on it, which I'd be happy to sell if interested. I was constrained to a 240 mm radiator and tried several (NZXT Kraken X53, Arctic Liquid Freezer II), but landed with the Alphacool LT240. I hated how wide the quick release connectors were in such a tight build, so I replaced the flex tubing (the modular design is novel, and maybe I use it in some other box later and put the quick release connectors back on, but having replaced the fans it came with with NF-A12x25 PWM - Noctua and added a couple more NF-A12x15 PWM - Noctua there is room to exercise one of the modular expansion options that Alphacool offers.

Good luck with your build.