This build was built up over the years from spare parts that I did not use and swapped better components from my first build to this one. Coming from the Bitfenix Prodigy (my first build), I discovered Mini-ITX cases can be a more difficult to build in but really all it takes is patience. Phanteks does make some nice cases and this one is no exception. My only gripes I had with the Evolv Mini were the included motherboard standoffs didn't screw down tight far enough to hold the motherboard in correctly and the first one I received had bent airflow vents. If I wasn't forced into using an ITX board I would have chose the mATX verison.
One challenge that some people might run into is the removable top fan mount doesn't really help when you have a sealed watercooler because the tubes will not reach without taking off the top panel unles. Not hard to do, just defeats the purpose when CPU block is already attached. I guess just don't mount the block beforehand and everything will be alright.
Another issue with the case is the thermal temps. Many reviewers mentioned the case can be about 5-10 C higher than other cases and they weren't lying. Full load CPU temps are not not the best but not horrible. GPU has a 5 C difference when under full load and fans maxed compared to when the GPU is in the Prodigy. This is because the GPU faces downward towards the PSU with less than an inch to spare.
All said and done I enjoyed this build and besides the temps I am very satisfied how it turned out
(Running Windows 10 now)
(Update 8/7/2015 - I gave up on the H80i and I'm using the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo, another component just sitting around. Temps have been reduced by 10 C! I was thinking of switching the CPU to a H100i but we will see.)
(Update 8/9/2015 - Corrected the temps, part list and added Furmark results screenshot.)
Still one of the best values. Too bad I won't be overclocking.
Overrated? Well it outperformed my H80i by 10 C difference so I can't justify using that word. This build was spare components and better components from my old build. I believe the mounting bracket is the problem with the H80i. Maybe I'll try again later but I am pretty impressed with the CM Hyper 212 Plus.
At the time of purchase this was still one of the best ITX motherboards out. Loads of features for this form factor.
Can't complain. Was on sale at the time and matched my motherboard.
This is my OS drive and got it while it was on sale also.
Great storage value. It's a black drive so you know already.
Backplate included. Green LED and green accents. Upgraded from a Asus GTX660 OCC and very happy with the purchase. It was a limited run really happy I chose this GPU.
The look of this case is awesome along with the metal frame. It does give a little but can't really complain too much at this price. The only issues I have with it is the thermal temps are going to be higher and it can be somewhat difficult to build in.
Great power supply. I didn't get it on sale but I still think it was worth it. My first modular PSU