M1

NCE-1-M1X-B26-TW2

by NCASE

$210
Important Information
The M1 with an Optical Disk Drive Slot on the Top Panel have been discontinued.
Tempered Glass & Acrylic Window kit in the works as an upgrade kit for 2019 Q4.
USB-C Front I/O is in the works as an upgrade kit for 2019 Q4.
Description
Included
Resources

The original crowdfunded computer enclosure, the M1 couples a clean all-aluminum construction with clever, flexible layout options, providing full-tower class desktop performance within a 12.6L frame.

 

Version Updates
V6
  • Front I/O
    • Added USB Type C port (requires motherboard 20 pin Type E header)
    • Changed headphone and mic ports to single combo jack
    • All ports use new molds
    • Redesigned I/O bracket with swappable no-I/O faceplate (ports can be removed for cleaner look/slightly better 2.2+ slot GPU compatibility)
  • Chassis
    • Redesigned ventilation holes on bottom and rear to improve airflow
    • Added longer fan mounting slots on the bottom
    • Bottom vents moved to separate steel floor plate attached to underside of chassis
    • Added bottom magnetic dust filter
    • Threaded inserts on PCI bracket
    • Added M4 screw holes for window mounting to chassis
    • Front-right chassis flange reduced, SFX PSU can now be installed from the right side
    • Reduced rear-left chassis flange to facilitate GPU installation
    • Enlarged chassis front GPU passthrough to facilitate GPU installation and provide more room for oversized GPUs
    • Removed four panel mounting clips from side flanges to reduce incidence of oversized GPU conflicts
    • Changed front 2.5" drive mounting to use screws instead of rubber grommets to save space/reduce complexity
    • Integrated fan bracket mount into chassis flanges
    • Added inside-front mounting for SFX PSU
  • Motherboard tray
    • Changed to removable standoffs
  • ODD bracket
    • Redesigned to single piece, now supports 9.5mm and 12.7mm ODD drives
  • HDD cage
    • Redesigned to two pieces, now supports 2x 3.5" drives *or* 3x 2.5" drives; now allows mounting to inside front 2.5" mount (3x 2.5" configuration only)
  • Top panel
    • Changed to 2mm thick
  • Side panels
    • Extended ventilated area adjacent to GPU
  • Other
    • New 15mm tall molded rubber feet
    • New adjustable GPU support bracket (adjustable for 2-2.5 slot cards)
    • Eliminated ATX PSU bracket
V5
  • Front USB 3.0 ports cleaner look (removed port edges flanges)
  • Motherboard tray is now fastened with screws instead of rivets to facilitate replacement or modding
  • Later batches only:
    • Front USB 3.0 ports color changed from blue to black
    • Removed #6-32 screws for PSU mounting (some users were incorrectly using them in M3-threaded holes, stripping the threads)
      • Re-added for later batches, now in a separate labeled bag
V4
  • Fan bracket changed to steel and magnetic filter is now included
  • Fan bracket mounts changed to allow 2mm of additional travel (allows 140mm fan w/120mm mounting holes to be used alongside a 120mm fan)
V3
  • Braces added to bottom corners of chassis for increased rigidity/decreased probability of wobbling
  • 0.3mm decrease in side and front panel height
  • Extra QC for wobbling & panel uniformity
  • SFX bracket raised 2mm and flange trimmed for better SFX-L support (CAUTION: SFX-L is still a very tight fit with long GPUs, even with the revised bracket)
  • Additional motherboard standoffs added for compact mATX boards (226x173mm max w/SFX bracket; see thread and google docs spreadsheet)
  • Slightly increased CPU cutout size
V2
  • Enlarged CPU cutout upward on motherboard tray
  • Additional cutouts at bottom of motherboard tray
  • Move rear 92mm fan and tubing holes down 2mm
  • Additional 3.5" HDD mounting location at forward bottom of chassis
  • Cable tie holes on chassis bottom reduced from 10 to 5
  • SSD stacking brackets modified to allow stacked 7mm thick SDDs closer
  • ATX PSU bracket moved back to allow more clearance behind chassis front
  • 3.5" HDD cage fixed to work in upper fan bracket position
  • ODD bracket screw holes reduced for better M2 screw fit
  • No top panel screw
  • More SSD mounting screws
  • Extra side panel clips
  • Dome head M5 screws changed to flat head M5
  • Shortened internal AC cable, changed to left angle
  • Threaded inserts at side bracket mounting points
  • Sub-millimeter increases to exterior panel dimensions to mitigate panel warping
  • Feet color changed to black for silver cases

 

In the box: M1 enclosure, internal power extention cable, accessory kit

M1: The original crowdsourced computer enclosure.

The M1 started with a simple idea: motivated by the shortcomings of the enclosures that had come before, it set forth to be better in form and function. From the overall aesthetic design, down to the smallest detail, every facet was subject to the scrutiny and feedback of hobbyists, DIY'ers, and average users alike. The outcome of that effort? A 12.6L enclosure that sets itself apart with a unique combination of capability and flexibility, in a deceptively small and appealingly understated package.

Design

A handsome desktop you can actually put on your desk.

With its sleek, subtly-faceted brushed aluminum front panel, the M1 presents a refined, minimalist face to the world. An angular, arched cutout exposes the front USB 3.0 and HD audio ports, flanking the central power button, whose two-color LED glows crisply – but not overly bright – when powered. Side and top panels are perforated with symmetrical ventilation areas, ensuring both visual harmony and proper system airflow. And fully toolless exterior panels allow easy access to the interior, while keeping the clean, smooth surfaces free of the visual clutter of screws or fasteners.

Over one thousand 3mm ventilation holes
Black or silver anodized panels

Performance

The biggest limitation is your imagination.

Designed for mini-ITX motherboards, the M1 nevertheless sports features shared by much larger enclosures. Full-length dual and triple-slot video cards can be installed with ease via large openings in the chassis. Top-down CPU coolers with 120mm or 140mm fans can be used in the M1, up to 130mm in height. All-in-one coolers with 120mm or even 240mm radiators can also be mounted internally. And – for the truly hardcore – the M1 allows for custom water cooling loops using a slim 240mm radiator, providing greatly reduced noise or additional overclocking headroom. Never before has this level of capability been possible in a enclosure of this size. High performance, low noise, and small size is no longer a "choose two" proposition.

130mm CPU cooler support
317mm dual-slot GPU support

Construction

Idealistic design. Everyday practicality.

Coming in at a svelte 12.6 liters in volume, the all-aluminum chassis has the proportions and features of much larger enclosures. Appearing as a conventional tower enclosure on a much reduced scale, the M1 enjoys a footprint that's substantially smaller than many cube-style small form factor enclosures. And, through its use of 1.5mm high-grade aluminum, its compactness and weightlessness don't come at the expense of rigidity, making the M1 easy to travel with or pack into a carry-on.

Lightweight 2.0kg enclosure weight
1.5mm all-aluminum chassis and panels

A space saver without compromise?

Watch the Linus Tech Tips review

Specifications

Models

M1V6B2: M1 Version 6, black exterior, vented aluminum panel
M1V6S2: M1 Version 6, silver exterior, vented aluminum panel

Enclosure Volume

12.6L

Enclosure External Dimensions (L x W x H)

Discluding protrusions: 328mm x 160mm x 240mm
Including protrusions: 338mm x 160mm x 250mm

Enclosure Interior Dimensions

307mm x 157mm x 237mm

Enclosure Weight

2.0kg

Shipment Weight

3.4kg

Shipment Dimensions

400mm x 240mm x 340mm

Materials

Exterior: 1.5mm brushed anodized aluminum
Interior frame: 1.5mm powder coated aluminum
Interior fan bracket: 1mm powder coated steel

I/O

Two USB 3.0 ports
One 3.5mm headphone jack
One 3.5mm microphone jack

Compatibility

Motherboards

Mini-ITX

CPU Coolers

Coolers are limited to 130mm in height with the side bracket installed, and no fan installed.

  • When mounted, coolers cannot extend past the top edge of the motherboard by more than ~10mm. For many larger coolers, this limits motherboard choice to those with centrally-located sockets.
  • Large coolers that extend past the front of the board preclude use of the 3.5" HDD cage.
Graphics

Rear exhaust cards are recommended, especially for cards with a TDP greater than 150W.

Maximum card length:

  • 317mm in slots 1 & 2
  • 279mm in slot 3

Maximum card height:

  • For cards up to 317mm, or for cards in the third slot: 111mm
  • For cards up to 292mm in length in the first or second slot: 140mm
  • For all cards: 120mm at the PCIe power connectors

Graphics cards with PCBs which extend to the full height at the corners will not fit in the M1, due to interference with the chassis. See this post for more information.

For more detailed GPU size limitations, refer to this diagram.

Storage

Optical Disc Drive Support

  • Slim slot-load drives up to 12.7mm thick are supported via vertical mounting with an ODD slotted top panel.

3 x 3.5" Mounts

  • 1 x 3.5" is available on the bottom of the enclosure
  • 2 x 3.5" is available via the removable side 3.5" HDD bracket, but can't be used with conjunction with a dual radiator or ATX PSU

3 x 2.5" Mounts

  • 1 x 2.5" is available inside the enclosure, towards the front
  • 1 x 2.5" is available behind the front panel, in lieu of an optical drive
  • 1 x 2.5" is available on the bottom of the enclosure, in lieu of a 3.5" drive
Liquid Cooling

Sealed liquid coolers, or integrated pump/block and radiator/reservoirs, are recommended. Only single 120mm or 240mm radiators are supported. A 240mm radiator on the side bracket precludes use of ATX power supplies or the dual 3.5" HDD cage.

Recommended maximum radiator length: 290mm, or less if installing a 2.5" drive at the front of the enclosure

Recommended maximum thickness of radiator & fans: 60mm

Power Supply

SFX PSU support is standard. Installation of SFX-L (SFX extended to 130mm long) power supplies is possible using the v3 and later SFX bracket, which has been revised specifically for models based on the Sirfa/High Power unit. These include:

  • The SilverStone SX500-LG
  • The Sharkoon SilentStorm SFX Gold
  • The High Power SFX-L500GD
  • The Chieftec SFX-500GD-C
  • The Scythe SPKRG-S500P

Due to the limited space available, SFX-L is a tight fit when used with long GPUs.

ATX PSU support is possible using the included bracket with the following limitations:

  • ATX PSU's can't be used with GPUs over 195mm long.
  • ATX PSU's can't be used with the dual 3.5" HDD cage or 240mm radiator mounted to the side bracket; a 120mm radiator is still possible to install over the motherboard area
  • Maximum recommended ATX PSU length: 160mm
  • The AC inlet orientation on some ATX power supplies may prevent the included angle plug from fitting, so it is crucial to check the orientation and location of the AC inlet to ensure compatibility. See this diagram for more information. The included AC cable uses a left-angle plug.

Compatibility

How can I order an M1?

When cases are in stock, you may order directly from this website. At times when we have no inventory available, we may instead offer pre-orders for the next production run.

How long will it take to receive my M1? When will I get a tracking number?

Orders are usually shipped in batches weekly, with exception to holidays. Typically, order made between Monday to Saturday are shipped the following week between Wednesday to Friday.

Something is out of stock! Will it be restocked?

Items are restocked after production runs. The period between production runs varies based on demand, but is typically one production run every 3 months.

What's included with the M1?

The M1 comes with the following: screws for drive and fan mounting, rubber softmounts for drive mounting, 3.5" HDD cage, 2.5" stacking brackets, slim optical drive bracket, SFX PSU bracket, ATX PSU bracket, front USB/audio ports and power switch, left-angle internal AC cable, 2x 120mm fan filters, 4x 120mm metal fan grilles. No fans or paper manual are included.

What's the difference between different versions of the M1?

Each version has a few minor revisions. You can see a list of changes here.

Can I turn the optical drive slot version into the no-ODD slot version if I get the slotless top panel?

Yes. The only difference is the top panel, which may be easily swapped out.

Are the panels compatible with a different version of the chassis (e.g., V2 chassis with V3 panels)?

Yes. All panel versions are compatible with all chassis versions.

There's no manual! What do all the screws do?
How do I remove the side panels?

The side, top, and front panels require no tools to remove. Using your fingertips, simply pull them away from the case by the edges.

There's no manual! What do all the screws do?

There are two types of drive mounting:

  • For the rounded keyhole mounts (2.5" mounts, one bottom 3.5" mount), attach the rubber softmounts and screws to the drive first, slide the drive into the keyholes.
  • For the spade-shaped keyhole mounts (on 3.5" HDD cage and one bottom 3.5" mount), insert the rubber softmount into the keyhole first, then screw the drive

Additionally there are small brackets included which allow 2.5" drives to be installed together in a stacked fashion.

Will [insert component here] fit in the M1?

Please see the compatibility section for size restrictions and links to more information.

A 240mm radiator can't possibly be enough to cool both a high end CPU and GPU, can it?

It most certainly can. Radiator requirements are often exaggerated, but this also has to do with expectations and what your goals are. A 240mm radiator and full water loop in the M1 can significantly lower the noise of the GPU, while keeping temperatures below stock.

Are there any accessories designed for the M1?

Yes! Demciflex offers magnetic filters specially designed for the M1. They can be purchased directly from their site. Additionally, other members of the community have spearheaded the development of the following accessories for the M1:

Please note NCASE has no affiliation with any of these individuals or companies.

Why isn't the M1 microATX? All you have to do is add a slot!

One of the primary design goals of the M1 was to be able to house, power, and cool high performance components, while being as small as reasonably possible. Mini-ITX is the smallest motherboard form-factor capable of supporting such a build, and is actually considerably smaller than mATX. In particular, the short length of mini-ITX is what allows the front-mounted power supply, and by extension, the side-mounted dual radiator. Keeping the same layout with mATX would result in a a significantly larger case.

MicroATX also has a higher set of requirements in regards to cooling and power delivery, necessitating a move to larger components (ATX PSUs) and less compact layouts to ensure good airflow.