Tech Help - Can I move my PC/Tower into a Rackmount Case?
In this article I am going to cover transferring components from an existing tower/desktop-based solution into a rackmount case.
First thing to remember is that a rackmount case is no different to a tower case – It’s just a much thicker metal and on a horizontal layout rather than vertical as would be found in a tower case. Most rackmount cases will accept components directly out a tower case and there’s usually only one restriction and that’s in 1U or 2U rackmount chassis.
How do I know which height to choose?
To choose the right rackmount case you need to consider the following;
· How much space is free in the rackmount cabinet? If you go with a 4U chassis now and you have 8U spare, will this give you enough future expansion? Replacing rackmount cabinets can be very challenging.
· Noise level – Due to the nature of cooling in a rackmount case the smaller the U height of a case the smaller the cooling fans are and therefore the faster they must run to push sufficient air. This means the case the louder it will be – If you are installing this in a room which noise could be a concern then think about a 3U or larger case.
What about expansion?
· Drive bays – How many do you need and how many do you want. An advantage of a rackmount case is the introduction of hot-swap, which is often not available on almost all PC cases and only a select few higher-end server tower cases. If you are on a budget and you want lots of disks, then look at internal fixed drives over hotswap.
· Expansion Slots – A 1U chassis generally has a maximum of 1x expansion slot and this must use a riser card suitable. A 2U usually has 7 slot profile slot and 3U upwards will normally have 7 or 8 full height slots. However, note if you are moving GPUs then you may have to go with a 4U chassis due to the height of the GPU.
· PSU compatibility – 1U cases will take only a 1U Industrial PSU. The majority of 2U cases only take a 2U PSU, but some models we sell will work with either an ATX PSU. 3U cases are a little different – Most will take a 2U PSU only and a 4U case is the most universal as they will generally always take a standard ATX PSU.
· Doors – Do you want to lock the front to prevent unauthorised access or perhaps introduce a dust filter?
So, what’s next?
Talk to us – We have years of experience with chassis – It’s what we do, and we have a massive catalogue of hundreds of different models stocked in our UK warehouse. Just get in touch and one of our friendly sales team would be happy to discuss your requirements.