Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Silverstone RVZ02 m-ITX Gaming Case

Silverstone Raven RVZ02 Case


The Raven RVZ02* case, introduced in late 2015,  is Silverstone's latest effort in producing the ultimate mITX gaming case for the discerning enthusiast. After going through a few iterations of Silverstone mITX gaming cases, the improvement in both design and ease of assembly becomes apparent once you get your hands on it.




* Do note that there are 2 versions of this case design - the all black RVZ02 model shown above and the windowed RVZ02-W model at a slight premium.


What Silverstone says...
"With a volume of only 12 liters, this case is not only slimmer but is actually easier to assemble compared to the RVZ01 or any other slim case before it... plenty of room for a powerful graphics card up to 13 inches in length available while tool-less drive cages...
With clever space utilization and engineering, two major heat sources of a PC are separated via the chassis’ main chamber so CPU and graphics card can each have their own airflow path."


Features

  • Highest performance capability in super slim form factor
  • Support graphics card up to 13 inches
  • Mini-ITX motherboard & SFX/-L PSU compatible
  • Independent expansion slot design for easy assembly
  • Tool-less drive cage design
  • Fits in nearly any environment with horizontal or vertical orientation
  • fanless thus totally silent case, only 87mm thick (vs 107mm in FTZ01, click for more!)



Notable Specifications

Power Supply - SFX & SFX-L
Expansion Card - Compatible with 13” long, width restriction – 4.78”
Limitation of CPU cooler - 58mm



Packaging

Do note the "unique product" RTFM advisory on the inner cardboard flap, this compact case is meant for the slightly more experienced assemblers but don't let this put you off cos it probably isn't too difficult.

With that out of the way, assembling the RVZ02 rig is actually much simpler than the previous FTZ01 case previewed - due to improved overall design and it having fewer assembly parts eg, the previously discrete PSU and video card mounts are now integrated into the main chassis.






Unboxing

Black fabric bag instead of the usual soft plastic




RTFM




Bundled Accessories

In the white box - PCI-e risers, case stands/feet, screws etc...






RVZ02 Case

Really muted Silverstone Raven branding, reset hole, triangular power button and ODD slot. The audio and USB3 ports are elegantly hidden away by a sliding bezel which also houses the Power and Storage Access LEDs.

That much thought has gone into the design of this RVZ02 model becomes more and more apparent as time goes by. It is really full of little nifty tricks and turns, impressive!




Reset Hole (paper clip needed)




Triangular Power Button




ODD Slot




Sliding Bezel with hidden audio/USB3 ports, Pwr/HDD LEDs





Front Bezel - LED Effects

Quite the treat for Batman fans as the colours are just so Bruce Wayne*...


With the bezel kept up





With the bezel slid down, the red storage access LED almost looks a laser beam... lol





* For those who prefer a muted facade esp. HTPC users, the rather prominent V shaped LED area of the RVZ02 isn't as easy to tame as the more subtle front LEDs of the FTZ01 with its luxurious full aluminium facade.



Side Panels

Symmetrical, actually identical side panels with removable large meshed ventilation grilles










The easily removable frame with its fine dust mesh, almost invisible from the exterior aspect.




Of course it is clearly visible when viewed from the otherwise hidden internal surface.




Interior

Featuring tool free SSD bays, all black sleeved cabling, rotated PCI-e slot, ODD holder and oversized CPU socket cut-out.


Original cable status - yikes, rats nest!




Quick re-org done - em, just to show what a lil' braiding and twisting can do, much neater!








2 views of the tool free 2.5" storage bay and yes, they tilt nicely when you undo their catches





Isolated video card bay which accomodates the longest gaming card, do note the 4 catches of the SSD bays intruding into this compartment cos they serve a most useful function (explained more in later photos).




The Rig

Trying to fit up a small compact yet cost effective HTPC, casual gaming PC to last a few years... trying a full Silverstone theme rig to go with this RVZ02 case.


The Motherboard 
Asus B150i Pro Gaming WiFi Aura
Reason for choice - full featured, no need to pay more for overclocking premium, the great Asus UEFI


Intel i3-6100
Reason for choice - dual fast cores with high stock clock speed of 3.7GHz, above average cost performance


Crucial Ballistix Sport DDR4 RAM
Great budget RAM, sold in kits or separate sticks, click for more...!
 
Reason for choice - low profile, nice aesthetics in neutral silver gray, good performers, highly compatible


SilverStone ST45SF-G Power Supply (80+ Gold)
Click for more... 


Intel stock HSF vs Silverstone AR06
Click for more...

Initially gave the stock Intel HSF a try out but load temps actually hit near 90C during a xvid4PSP trial x264 encoding run which mandated a quick swap to the Silverstone AR06 HSF. lol



Assembly Time

The manual instructs the installation of the PSU as an early step. However, there is no need to rush installing the PSU early especially if it is a fully modular model.

As per usual modus operandi, the i/o plate and mobo was installed first with the modular PSU & case cables followed by the PSU proper. All done by appropriate cable tunneling, no additional cable ties were used.

Design wise, the ATX12V CPU plug cut-out is set a little too low down for comfort.


Stock Intel HSF




Silverstone AR06 HSF



The PSU may be mounted this way to show the Silverstone branding but the better functional alternative is to flip the PSU around for a more direct fresh air intake. A full modular PSU makes it so very easy to try out each different mounting direction.





Mounting the AR06 HSF this way around, the heatpipes are positioned in accordance to claims of convectional gravity as requested by some. Inevitably, this places the 2 hottest components in close proximity to each other viz. CPU VRM and ascending heatpipes. The Southbridge area enjoys an enviable luxurious clearance though.





This huge mobo plate cut-out affords you the luxury of swapping out heatsinks and adding M.2 SSDs rather easily.




The stand-in HD 6670 video card appears pathetically minuscule in the humungous video card bay... lol

Of course, this case takes your over the top tualengkong gaming video cards, up to 13 inches long, easily.



Silverstone case design engineers have cleverly multi-tasked the plastic spring catches for the SSDs into spacers for the video card so there is no risk of contact with the case frame. Easier to demonstrate this with a small video card, hence the HD 6670.







If mounted this way, the elevated PSU ledge introduces a breathing gap for the intake fan.





Ventilation Grilles

Visual inspection with the bundled dust mesh removed


CPU - fantastic view!

PSU - the whole unit visualised but the intake fan is on the opposite side... else easily flip it around then for a clear full view.






Benches & Temps

The rig is very quiet during test runs, practically inaudible amidst the ambient noise of an average urban home.

Ambient temps 28~30C



CPU-Z
always nice to see the idle vcore at 0 volts, thanks to Intel power states and a proper PSU



AIDA64 Stability Test

just a short run for some idea of 100% CPU load temps



AIDA64 GPGPU Bench

 just a short run for some idea of 100% GPU load temps




* Have to come back to this later cos simply ran out of time for now plus possibly the need to get a higher capacity PSU - got to install an over the top super long gaming video card and run it at 100% loads to see the max operating temps... theoretically, results should not be too far from the FTZ01 (click for more!). Update done - see section "Update 030916" below...



Daily Usage


Surfing, downloading, unzipping, internet radio, Defence Grid 2 gaming etc... the CPU idles in the low 30s and maxes in the mid 50s while max fan speed is just below 1700rpm.

 

Update 030916

Looks like SG owners are happily going to get the HB01 handles soon, going by this Facebook announcement...









The manual shows how it is attached







The corresponding screw holes on the RVZ02 frame





Silverstone SX600-G

SFX 600W 80Plus Gold Power Supply

Got this upgrade to improve stability when driving the Sapphire Toxic R9 270X during stress tests, the former 450W unit was rated below the recommended 500W needed for this card.

This higher end model has a thermally controlled Zero RPM mode for the fan which only kicks in if the operating temps are high enough. This is intended to reduce operating noise as well as dust contamination.


Silverstone Official specs, click!
















Installed!
The modular cables provided are of the soft slim ribbon variety which makes it easier to do cable management in a tight space. Note also the use of a twist tie to hold down the Sapphire card (boxed in red) as the provided plastic holder is too tight for this card.







AIDA64 GPGPU Bench
100% GPU load temps for the Sapphire Toxic R9 270X, a very decent result indeed.




 

Initial Impressions

For avid PC gamers who love a small rig, yet desire being unconstrained by a compact case in wanting a fast gaming oversized video card, the Silverstone Raven RVZ02 is definitely a fantastic choice.

Check its SRP, click for more!

Pros
  • improved design with relative ease of rig assembly
  • sleek stealthy looks with many elegant twists
  • fanless, totally silent in operation
  • compact yet well laid out design
  • great ventilation for both CPU and GPU
  • caters for the longest gaming video card

May be improved
  • mostly not tool free
  • slightly flimsy side panels
  • PSU exhaust path

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