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Kraken and Shift (updated)

by terryjung


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

Dec. 20, 2017

CPU Clock Rate

3.4 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.632 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

8 GHz


After numerous issues, my very first pc was complete.

I'm not much of gamer, but I do enjoy gaming casually and needed a capable gpu to drive my new ultrawide monitor 3440x1440 from crossover. So I've chosen the gtx 1070 and i5-7500 combo.

After countless days of research, I've grown interest for small foot print cases, hence my choice to go for a mini ITX build. I reckon there's just too much space wasted in normal atx cases unless you are building a custom water loop system.

I've also wondered why NO ONE had attempted flipping the gpu bracket, when this particular case advertises that it is able to do so. Its a shame that the majority aren't even able to see the beauty of our gpu shrouds when they're mounted on our pcs. So I wanted to be the first (or at least I think I am) to mount my gpu facing outwards by using a pcie riser, and showing off its incredible design and rgb lights.

When all my parts arrived and began building my pc, thats when I ran into my first problem. Unfortunately, after being enchanted by the rgb features with the nzxt kraken, I haven't looked into any potential clearance issues. As a result my nzxt kraken radiator was longer than the width of the case, disabling me from mounting my tempered glass on both sides.

My next issue was a faulty water pump inside the nzxt kraken. This problem was easily solved by a replacement, but the clearance issue needed more attention.

In order to keep the nzxt kraken and the tempered glass, I cut out 4 wooden stand offs, and covered the wooden stand offs with black tape to hide any inconsistencies. I then drilled 2 holes in each block and screwed all the original screws on one side and custom ones on the other side. As a result the glass panels are slightly lifted off from the case, which I personally think looks pretty cool. I'm aware this might lead to more dust build up inside the case, but i reckon it's a fair trade for better airflow and keeping the nzxt kraken.

Due to the 3.5 hard drive mounted at the back, cable management was tough, but being a perfectionist, it wasn't much of a problem hiding most of the cables and getting things organised.

For those who've been interested in the nzxt kraken and this case,... don't worry, it is possible to have both without sacrifices.


I've adjusted quite a few things with my build. -improved cable management -added 2 noctua a12x15 PWM fans -2 phanteks rgb strip connected to asus aura rgb header

Comments Sorted by:

Darkhorse3690 1 Build 2 points 16 months ago

If you are worried about dust you can set all the fans to intake, which will ensure not only that all the air sucked into the case will be going through the dust filters, but also that all exhaust will be pushed out of the spaces you made with the glass. Other cases have done the same from the beginning - having a semi-open design with all intakes covered by dust filters. The positive pressure will ensure exhaust gets pushed out from the spaces at the sides you created with your custom standoffs and dust gets caught by the dust filters - it might improve your temps a bit too. Might be worth a shot ;)

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

thnx for tip, i was actually planning to do exactly what u suggested, but the fans i wanted are currently out of stock, so im just waiting for them to be restocked. But temps aren't bad with just one intake fan at the bottom... Will defs chuck it in once i have them in hand!

Darkhorse3690 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

You might also want to try having the two front fans set as intake and the rad as an exhaust. It should still be positive pressure and that would ensure the hot air from the rad isn't circulating inside the case. Either way will probably work well though. I am impressed by your work on those standoffs. I really love the x42 and want to get this case, but I've been putting it off because the H80i doesn't look as good

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

haha thnx, well.. there's nothing that looks better than the kraken. You can get this case and x42 and make it work like mine :)

Searash 2 Builds 1 point 16 months ago

Nice mod for the kraken! Looks great and flipping the gpu bracket too!

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago


cooperj600 3 Builds 1 point 16 months ago

What monitor are you rocking? Awesome build btw

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

thnx, its a 95hz ultrawide monitor from a korean brand called crossover. It was like $500 when i picked it up from Korea. It was cheap, but surprisingly very good.

Trinergy 9 Builds 1 point 16 months ago

FYI, GPU orientation towards the window starves the GPU fans for air. Phanteks recommends pointing it inside. For more air get a 140mm PWM fan that you can connect to your GPU. The GPU has PWM case fan connectors that you can use to allow the GPU to get more air when it needs it (I think Asus calls it FanConnect). I have been using GPU PWM fan splitters to do the same thing for my old builds but Asus has actually included the same functionality which is great!

terryjung submitter 1 Build 2 points 16 months ago

ye, i'm aware phanteks recommends that. But because my case is modified, air is being pull through the gap between the glass panels and the case. so its all good. and also i was gonna do exactly what u just mentioned, but the cryorig xt140 fans i was gonna get were out of stock, so im just waiting for them to be restocked. :(

bfnentwick 1 point 15 months ago

The mod to push the side panels out is pretty clever, and definitely aleviates the airflow issues this case has.

I'd love to know more about your cable management though. I've got 2 SSDs hooked up in my case, along with the power for the RGB on my CM AIO, and my cables are a mess. Any additional detail pics you can show on how you so cleanly routed those cables?

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 15 months ago

Thankyou, the side panels were a head ache at the start ahahha. I'm not sure if u can see it clearly, but ssd cables near the gpu are kind of hidden by the extra piece of pcie riser i added.

With my cable management, I tried to route every single piece of cable through the back of my case. It will get crammed and tight, but if u keep all the cables flat and organised, it shouldn't be too hard. I'll upload some more photos just for you mate!

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

ye defs hahaha, no not yet, there are still 2 more fan headers at the bottom end of the gpu, so i'll just connect 2 extra fans over there when i get them

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Broxx 6 Builds 1 point 16 months ago

Clean build but the intake/exhaust seems a bit odd. Why did you remove the front 140mm fan? I understand your modification for better airflow but what is the purpose if you don't have a fan for intake?

Also, you typically want cold air going through the rad so it would have been more beneficial to pull fresh air from the bottom through the rad, then have a 140 on the front to exhaust.

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

thnx, ye i'm already aware of this issue, i was just waiting for the fans i wanted to be restocked. I didnt like the stock phanteks fan, plus my radiator was taking up too much space. So i've ordered 15mm fans from noctua couple of days ago, so i'm just waiting to get those.

tinocaer 1 point 15 months ago

How was your pcie riser reach in order to flip the gpu? Mine is too short...

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 15 months ago

i bought a 20cm pcie riser from thermal take to extend the built-in pcie riser

Lionvader 1 point 15 months ago

Dude, first of all respect for that build!

I have a very similiar looking Black&Grey setup, so i wanted to ask you what brand this keyboard is from? Looks dope and would fit perfectly for me!

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 15 months ago

thankyou, its a romer g mechanical keyboard from logitech. The official name for it is "Logitech G413" there are two variants of this keyboard, silver and carbon. The silver has a white back light whist the carbon is red.

MasSS 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Hey great build! I just started to build mine. sorry im a newbie but i cant find a USB 2.0 header on the Strix 270i motherboard. Can you tell me how i can connected the kraken x42 as it needs to be plugged in into a USB 2.0 header?

terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks! nws It was my first time too. Unfortunately I've noticed there weren't any usb 2.0 headers on any of the asus strix itx line of motherboards. So I used a separate "mini usb" to "usb A" cable and plugged it directly to the rear io panel of my motherboard. It's a bit sad, but at least it works. hope this helped :)

Ametista 2 Builds 1 point 12 months ago

I love it!!!

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

the radiator fan is for exhaust , i plan to get 2 cryorig xt140 for intake in the future, but they're currently out of stock. But cpu temps aren't bad, its hovering around 35 on idle and 65 degrees when playing games

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

i prefer not to, cuz it'll only accumulate hot air inside the case. But i reckon phanteks should have given the option to install a fan at the top (under the lid) for exhaust :(

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

actually ye you're right, hahaha my mistake. I'll try flipping it around. thnx

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

I guess the load times would be faster if games were saved onto the ssd, but apart from that, i dont think the hard drive hinders the performance from any gameplay experience

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terryjung submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

hahaha, thats what i thought when i first saw this monitor. it doesnt have the fame like the rog swift does, but i reckon its just as good for the price.

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