Description

This was a super fun build but as most MicroATX builds also a bit of a challenge. I was originally going to just buy something like this from XoticPC and have it built for me but I wasn't too impressed with their turn around times for something so expensive so I used the parts I pre-selected from their website for inspiration towards my own build!

Xigmatek Aquila (nVidia Edition): I immediately liked this case as I wanted something with handles and also in a relatively small form factor. Most other cases with the same layout do not come with handles. The nVidia version is very strange and is a give/take kind of upgrade, I wouldn't recommend the nVidia version unless you plan on using really small video cards/parts....

Pros: Cool design, mostly easy to work with even as a mATX case. Fits full sized graphics cards, radiators, etc. Easy to take apart, unscrew handles/etc when needed.

Cons: 2.5 inch drive bay only supports old slim version 2.5 ssd style, not the new Intel NVMe SSDs with thicker heatsink. 3.5 inch drive bay somewhat needlessly limits room for longer PSU. Screws don't go in seamlessly.

nVidia Version: There's nothing too special about this version except that it comes with two green magnetic LEDs and a big Geforce GTX sign that lights up on the side panel window. The sign can get in the way of a graphics card or water cooler radiator mounted on the roof. It also has a weird way of connecting, I managed to put it on the other side panel of the case but it was a huge hassle.

I also removed the 3.5 inch HDD bay and would suggest sawing through the back of the piece where the PSU goes to have an easier time with PSU cable management.

3dMark Results: http://www.3dmark.com/fs/7541903

CrystalMark Results:

CrystalDiskMark 5.1.2 x64 (C) 2007-2016 hiyohiyo Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/


  • MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
  • KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes

Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 2556.739 MB/s Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 1205.598 MB/s Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 854.760 MB/s [208681.6 IOPS] Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 731.178 MB/s [178510.3 IOPS] Sequential Read (T= 1) : 1214.812 MB/s Sequential Write (T= 1) : 1176.612 MB/s Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 41.508 MB/s [ 10133.8 IOPS] Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 306.419 MB/s [ 74809.3 IOPS]

Test : 1024 MiB [C: 8.7% (96.9/1117.3 GiB)] (x5) [Interval=5 sec] Date : 2016/02/13 11:29:40 OS : Windows 10 Professional [10.0 Build 10586] (x64)

For the future: A microATX case with big parts isn't easy to build, overlooked a potential problem with the m.2 to u.2 adapter and the PCIe 16x slot use instead of the 8x slot currently being used for the graphics card. Luckily the Asus adapter (instead of the gigabyte one currently in use) seems to be much lower profile and I'm hoping it'll be able to fit the u.2 cable with the graphics card overhead. Moving the graphics card to the 16x slot, besides potentially not allowing use of the m.2 slot for adapter purposes, will also conflict with the current radiator attached to the roof. I will have to move it to where the stock case fan exhaust is at the back and stick two regular fans on the roof instead.

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

This thing is huge, keep that in mind if using for an mATX build. Seems to be cooling nicely though was only able to get a 45x ratio on i7-6700k instead of 46x.

Motherboard

Pretty good board, just be careful with the PCIe slots and m.2 slots being so close together. The outside PCIe slot is 8x, not 16x.

Memory

No issues, overclocked with XMP profile.

Video Card

Best there is, but expensive. Able to hit higher OC as a first time OCer with just basic air cooling than most other 980 ti cards.

Case

Nice looking but quirky case. A lot of pros and cons respectively.

Power Supply

Getting the job done and with a relatively small form factor to fit into mATX cases.

Wireless Network Adapter

Very fast Wifi.

Monitor

Expensive and also a little quirky.

Comments

  • 41 months ago
  • 4 points

Nice build but cable management man....

  • 41 months ago
  • 2 points

LOL agreed.

  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

Look at the difference between picture 6 and 7, I'd say the cable management is pretty sufficient from Pic 7 and up no?

  • 41 months ago
  • 3 points

LOL I meant your desk and the wires goin' everywhere haha. Get a small table for the printer man, its on top of your trash can right now XD. The inside of your computer is quite nice!

  • 41 months ago
  • 2 points

Well of course the printer is on top of the trash can! That's where it belongs.... No... I just finished this comp so it got the main spot of where the printer used to be. Now they're both on top of a desk type thing :)

  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

Cool, post more pics!!!

  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

Put up one last pic of the whole setup :P I'm not planning on organizing the external cables any better as I'm hoping to be outta this place soon! (MSI GT80 SLI-263 on top of the treadmill :)

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Cable management pic 10 :)

  • 41 months ago
  • 2 points

That SSD...

  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

Took out the useless drive mounts and am waiting for something that will actually fit that SSD in the right place to arrive!

  • 41 months ago
  • 2 points

sexy case!

  • 41 months ago
  • 2 points

The Kingpin is massive. Nice Build!

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey... cool build. Are there replaceable color tabs on the H80i V2 like the H100i V2 has? Thanks man. -TP

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Just read your review. I was thinking about buying the Mobo. Could you clarify your comment "The outside PCIe slot is 8x, not 16x"

Their website says both slots at 16.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

This confused me as well. But it's only the first slot that is 16x. I can't remember if it's a misprint or what the explanation was, but it's definitely only the first slot. Putting it in the other or using SLI will only run at 8x each.

  • 33 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, I am also thinking about doing a build with this case recently. I saw in your pictures that your 980ti is about to touch the front panel of your case. Do you think I can fit in a 310mm video card?

  • 41 months ago
  • 0 points

A vote up just for the Laptop on the Treadmill! Best set up ever!! The laptop I mean!

The beast is, of course beasty! Especially with dat GPU!! Holy mother of graphics!

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

I didn't spend much time on Ram selection. I've bought Corsair ram many times before and have never had an issue, so just went with what seemed to have the most decent reviews and was at least DDR4 3000mhz.