Installation and Case Cooling

For the installation phase of our PC-V2120 case review, we chose to install a mid-range LGA 1156 system that we use for our test bench. This system includes an ECS P55H-AK motherboard, Intel i7-860 processor, Corsair H50 CPU watercooling unit, MSI GTX 460 1GB graphics card, 4GBs of Patriot Sector 5 DDR3-2000 memory, Western Digital 160GB SSD, Western Digital 500GB SATA hard drive, and a Western Digital 650W power supply. 


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After removing the motherboard tray from the chassis, we began to prep the tray to install our hardware. We removed the 120mm fan so we could install our H50 watercooler and removed a couple PCI slot covers so we could install our GTX 460 graphics card. We also secured all the motherboard standoffs we would need to install our ECS P55H-AK ATX motherboard.

 

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We used nine of these unique motherboard thumbscrews to secure the board to the motherboard tray. I used a screwdriver to ensure the screws were secured tightly before moving on with the installation.

 

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Next, I tried to install our H50 watercooler to the motherboard tray, but I ran into a couple problems. The main issue was the radiator on the H50 was larger than the space Lian Li set aside for this area. So, I just screwed in the top two screws to secure the unit to the tray. I won’t leave it like this as you will see later in the installation, but I wanted to leave it there so you could see another issue I ran into later during the build.

 

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Next, I installed the memory and graphics card using the included thumbscrews. Simple enough.

 

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Here is the second problem I ran into when I tried to install the H50 watercooler to the top of the motherboard tray. The water relay lines snagged on the back of the chassis and also the top of the radiator wouldn’t allow for the tray to slide easily into the back of the case. So, I took it out and uninstalled the radiator so I could move it to a different location.

 

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I chose to mount the H50 radiator to the top of the case so I had to remove one of the 120mm fan plates on the top panel of the PC-V2120. All I had to do was unscrew four screws to remove the plate. Easy stuff.

 

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Next, I used four low-profile thumbscrews to mount the radiator. This still wasn’t the best solution because I didn’t have a cover over the radiator, which could cause issues over time. The available space was also not entirely flat, but beveled, which caused issues while attaching the radiator to the top panel.

 

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After figuring out our watercooling dilemma, I installed our DVD optical drive.

 

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Then, I moved on to installing our primary solid state drive and secondary 500GB SATA hard drive. The 500GB HD used four unique screws that helped the drive slide right into the primary hard drive cage and lock into place. The SDD was secured using four thumbscrews to the bottom of the drive.

 

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Lastly, I installed the power supply and attached all the power and data cables to every component of our mid-range test system. I also attached all the fans to the motherboard and available fan controllers.

 

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I completed the installation in about 35 minutes and I had to say most of it was simple, quick, and easy. However, I did run into a few issues with installing the watercooler. I also think Lian Li needs to make cable management more of a priority because you can see most of the cables easily in the photo above. Most enthusiasts I know religiously keep their cables hidden and neat.

 

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Here’s a quick shot of the back panel. We didn’t have to do much here but install the PSU and take out a few PCI slot covers to make room for the graphics card.

 

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Here’s how the back panel turned out after we completed our hardware installation. It definitely needs some TLC to get all those cables to look neat and organized. It’s too bad I don’t have more time during my reviews to zip tie and sleeve all my wiring or I would.


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