Tuesday, July 13th 2021

Jonsbo Introduces the N1 Mini-ITX Chassis

Jonsbo has added to their PC case lineup with the introduction of the N1 Mini-ITX chassis. The N1 features a minimalist, industrial design thanks to its external brushed aluminium enclosure (3 mm) and steel innards (1 mm thick), and includes four feet so the tower can be put in vertical position, in addition to its apparently stock, horizontal one. The Jonsbo N1 features 5x 3.5" expansion bays, and 1x low-profile PCIe expansion port.

A single 140 mm fan on the front of the unit helps keep temperatures in check (particularly for the HDDs), and there's naturally support for a SFF power supply (up to 150 mm in length). The CPU cooler has clearance for up to 70 mm, and the graphics card support is limited to 185 mm. The front panel offers 1x USB 3.0, 1x USB Type-C, and 1x audio port. No word on pricing was available at time of writing.
Add your own comment

18 Comments on Jonsbo Introduces the N1 Mini-ITX Chassis

#1
odaniel
The heatsink fins are arranged perpendicular to the direction of the airflow. Isn't that obstructing airflow rather than making use of it?
Posted on Reply
#2
kayjay010101
odanielThe heatsink fins are arranged perpendicular to the direction of the airflow. Isn't that obstructing airflow rather than making use of it?
Yep, looks to be an oversight from whoever did the render.
Posted on Reply
#3
Chomiq
odanielThe heatsink fins are arranged perpendicular to the direction of the airflow. Isn't that obstructing airflow rather than making use of it?
Don't forget the 5 HDD's in front of the fan.
Posted on Reply
#4
TheLostSwede
This looks really neat, but I'm curious about the cooling of this.
Admittedly most NAS appliances rely on a single fan, but it's usually a pull fan in the rear.
Not sure I would consider the sidegrade, as I managed to squeeze in a 120mm AIO liquid cooler in my NAS case and that wouldn't fit in this.
It's also not obvious how the SATA backplane connects to the motherboard.

Posted on Reply
#6
londiste
and the graphics card support is limited to 185 mm.
Considering 5 drive bays and half-height, this is more for the storage controller than a graphics card.
Posted on Reply
#7
Chrispy_
The cooling on this thing is laughable - so many mistakes have already been made at this concept-render "we don't have a tangible product yet" anouncement that I very much doubt the final sample will resemble this.
  • Solid front panel for the single intake fan?
  • 5x 3.5" bays instead of 4x means no real gap between drives for airflow
  • Vertical orientation has the heaviest part (disks) at the top for instability.
  • Vertical orientation has the most temperature-sensitive part (disks) at the top, fighting convected heat from the CPU and PSU.
  • CPU heatsink orientation (likely irrelevant as people will provide their own CPU cooler, but still shows lack of thermal design understanding from Jonsbo)
Make the product, take an actual photo of what you can deliver, and THEN we can either dismiss it or get excited about it.
Posted on Reply
#8
Chomiq
I mean, they could change it to 4 bays with mesh on the top and fan acting as exhaust and additional fan mounted on the side for intake. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to look at the draft and ask "Ok, but where does the air come from?".
Posted on Reply
#9
Operandi
Chrispy_The cooling on this thing is laughable - so many mistakes have already been made at this concept-render "we don't have a tangible product yet" anouncement that I very much doubt the final sample will resemble this.
  • Solid front panel for the single intake fan?
  • 5x 3.5" bays instead of 4x means no real gap between drives for airflow
  • Vertical orientation has the heaviest part (disks) at the top for instability.
  • Vertical orientation has the most temperature-sensitive part (disks) at the top, fighting convected heat from the CPU and PSU.
  • CPU heatsink orientation (likely irrelevant as people will provide their own CPU cooler, but still shows lack of thermal design understanding from Jonsbo)
Make the product, take an actual photo of what you can deliver, and THEN we can either dismiss it or get excited about it.
  • Its small lower power NAS, you don't need a ton of air flow just some venting and active air movement.
  • The drives have a 140mm fan right in front of them and thats how all enterprise NASs stack their drives.
  • Yeah, thats an odd choice.
  • Unless you are using 10k drives hard drives hardly use any power once they are spun up and with a 140mm fan there is plenty of cooling for them.
  • Its not that Jonsbo dosn't understand thermals its just that like you said it just dosn't make any difference, you'll need active cooling unless you are going to use a ~10 watt CPU. The passive heatsink in the render isn't meant to be taken literally its just to show the layout of components.
Build quality looks exceptional and the design isn't perfet but I think its pretty nice case for small home NAS that you don't want to hide away in a closet.
Posted on Reply
#10
Chaitanya
Operandi
  • Its small lower power NAS, you don't need a ton of air flow just some venting and active air movement.
  • The drives have a 140mm fan right in front of them and thats how all enterprise NASs stack their drives.
  • Yeah, thats an odd choice.
  • Unless you are using 10k drives hard drives hardly use any power once they are spun up and with a 140mm fan there is plenty of cooling for them.
  • Its not that Jonsbo dosn't understand thermals its just that like you said it just dosn't make any difference, you'll need active cooling unless you are going to use a ~10 watt CPU. The passive heatsink in the render isn't meant to be taken literally its just to show the layout of components.
Build quality looks exceptional and the design isn't perfet but I think its pretty nice case for small home NAS that you don't want to hide away in a closet.
Also looks there is 1x PCI slot opening means it should really be used for either NIC or SSD AIC.
Posted on Reply
#11
bonehead123
Chrispy_The cooling on this thing is laughable - so many mistakes have already been made at this concept-render "we don't have a tangible product yet" anouncement that I very much doubt the final sample will resemble this.
  • Solid front panel for the single intake fan?
  • 5x 3.5" bays instead of 4x means no real gap between drives for airflow
  • Vertical orientation has the heaviest part (disks) at the top for instability.
  • Vertical orientation has the most temperature-sensitive part (disks) at the top, fighting convected heat from the CPU and PSU.
  • CPU heatsink orientation (likely irrelevant as people will provide their own CPU cooler, but still shows lack of thermal design understanding from Jonsbo)
Make the product, take an actual photo of what you can deliver, and THEN we can either dismiss it or get excited about it.
Agreed... looks like a really nice, but seriously flawed, concept at this point..... I am still shakin me head on the solid front panel, let alone all the other issues as noted above.....

Hopefully they will get some good feedback & address them, then come out with a superior, redesigned product, fingers crossed :)
Posted on Reply
#12
TheLostSwede
Chrispy_The cooling on this thing is laughable - so many mistakes have already been made at this concept-render "we don't have a tangible product yet" anouncement that I very much doubt the final sample will resemble this.
  • Solid front panel for the single intake fan?
  • 5x 3.5" bays instead of 4x means no real gap between drives for airflow
  • Vertical orientation has the heaviest part (disks) at the top for instability.
  • Vertical orientation has the most temperature-sensitive part (disks) at the top, fighting convected heat from the CPU and PSU.
  • CPU heatsink orientation (likely irrelevant as people will provide their own CPU cooler, but still shows lack of thermal design understanding from Jonsbo)
Make the product, take an actual photo of what you can deliver, and THEN we can either dismiss it or get excited about it.
Concept render? Did you not see the picture I posted from their site of the real thing?
Also, if you look at the front, it has about a centimeter wide air-intake around the edge of that "solid" front panel. Maybe not ideal, but it's clearly not solid.
I can agree with the second point, but again, look at the picture I posted, it doesn't look that bad.
I would guess putting the drives in the front was using the logic of every NAS having the drives up front and then nothing thinking any furter.
Operandi
  • Its small lower power NAS, you don't need a ton of air flow just some venting and active air movement.
  • The drives have a 140mm fan right in front of them and thats how all enterprise NASs stack their drives.
  • Yeah, thats an odd choice.
  • Unless you are using 10k drives hard drives hardly use any power once they are spun up and with a 140mm fan there is plenty of cooling for them.
  • Its not that Jonsbo dosn't understand thermals its just that like you said it just dosn't make any difference, you'll need active cooling unless you are going to use a ~10 watt CPU. The passive heatsink in the render isn't meant to be taken literally its just to show the layout of components.
Build quality looks exceptional and the design isn't perfet but I think its pretty nice case for small home NAS that you don't want to hide away in a closet.
You'd be surprised how much airflow you need in hotter climates.
Built my own NAS and I had to put in a second fan to get some airflow over the drives, as it simply wasn't enough air going through the rather crappy hot-swappable case I got. There are sadly not a ton of options when it comes to DIY NAS cases.

Enterprise NAS appliances also have a lot higher speed fans in them, as they push a lot more air through the case and don't care about noise levels.
Posted on Reply
#13
lukedriftwood
odanielThe heatsink fins are arranged perpendicular to the direction of the airflow. Isn't that obstructing airflow rather than making use of it?
That's a passive heat sink. The fins are arranged vertically to allow for thermal convection.

The fan is meant for the hard drives. None if any of the airflow is going to make it to the heatsink.
Posted on Reply
#14
Operandi
TheLostSwedeYou'd be surprised how much airflow you need in hotter climates.
Built my own NAS and I had to put in a second fan to get some airflow over the drives, as it simply wasn't enough air going through the rather crappy hot-swappable case I got. There are sadly not a ton of options when it comes to DIY NAS cases.

Enterprise NAS appliances also have a lot higher speed fans in them, as they push a lot more air through the case and don't care about noise levels.
Cooling is just about controlling the rise above ambient, and its pretty clear this thing isn't meant to stacked next to other hot systems in a datacenter or some industrial environment with extreme temps, its meant to sit on the shelf in your living room or bed room. The only concern with this case would be putting in a CPU with appropriate TDP as there isn't much air flow for the CPU and board. Hard drives themselves draw almost nothing once they are spun up (single digit watts), just about any amount of air flow will keep them happy and this case as a 140mm fan right in front of them. Even in enterprise NASs don't need a ton of cooling and when they do its for the CPU not the drives themselves.
Posted on Reply
#15
TheLostSwede
OperandiCooling is just about controlling the rise above ambient, and its pretty clear this thing isn't meant to stacked next to other hot systems in a datacenter or some industrial environment with extreme temps, its meant to sit on the shelf in your living room or bed room. The only concern with this case would be putting in a CPU with appropriate TDP as there isn't much air flow for the CPU and board. Hard drives themselves draw almost nothing once they are spun up (single digit watts), just about any amount of air flow will keep them happy and this case as a 140mm fan right in front of them. Even in enterprise NASs don't need a ton of cooling and when they do its for the CPU not the drives themselves.
I don't know where you live, but I live in the subtropics and in summer my Toshiba N300 drives hit 60 degrees or more on idle, which is a no-no, although they are officially rated up to 65 degrees. So yeah, they're able to produce a fair bit of heat I would say.
The drives normally idle around 45 degrees in summer, which is still hot for idle drives imho.
Posted on Reply
#16
Chrispy_
OperandiThe drives have a 140mm fan right in front of them and thats how all enterprise NASs stack their drives.
Five 3.5" drives stacked have a total height of exactly 130.5mm, ignoring drive sleds which don't seem to be used here anyway.

One 140mm fan has an external frame dimension of 140x140mm. The actual fan blades have like 133mm diameter - so we have a 133mm fan trying to blow air through a wall solid wall of hard disks with four gaps that are, assuming things are evenly-spaced in that 140mm wide cage, only 1.6mm wide. (140mm-130.5mm)/6

In other NAS and high-density storage servers, there is either far more spacing for airflow - around 5-10mm, or else they use 5000RPM high-pressure screamy boys to ram air through the tiny gaps, eardrums be damned.
OperandiUnless you are using 10k drives hard drives hardly use any power once they are spun up and with a 140mm fan there is plenty of cooling for them
I don't think there are any 10K SATA drives on the market any more. 10K SAS, sure - but this isn't a SAS backplane, it's a SATA backplane.
Posted on Reply
#17
Operandi
TheLostSwedeI don't know where you live, but I live in the subtropics and in summer my Toshiba N300 drives hit 60 degrees or more on idle, which is a no-no, although they are officially rated up to 65 degrees. So yeah, they're able to produce a fair bit of heat I would say.
The drives normally idle around 45 degrees in summer, which is still hot for idle drives imho.
In NA, its been 86F/30C here in the house which is right about the limit where I would turn on central air. In my desktop I have a 7200 Hitachi and 5400RPM WD Green the max the hit was 36 and 37c with two 120mm intake fans in front of them. I'm currently working building a TrueNAS home NAS in 2U iSTAR fully populated with 8 Seagate Constellation SAS drives that I got for free. Its sitting there in a semi-assembled state with the cover half on and two (there is room for 3 total) 80mm low speed Delta fans (idk what the RPMs are, I don't think FreeBSD can read that info) so its kinda in sad state right now and the hottest drive I see is 60C. So yeah.. I kinda need to do something about this thing but I consider this worst case scenario.
Chrispy_Five 3.5" drives stacked have a total height of exactly 130.5mm, ignoring drive sleds which don't seem to be used here anyway.

One 140mm fan has an external frame dimension of 140x140mm. The actual fan blades have like 133mm diameter - so we have a 133mm fan trying to blow air through a wall solid wall of hard disks with four gaps that are, assuming things are evenly-spaced in that 140mm wide cage, only 1.6mm wide. (140mm-130.5mm)/6

In other NAS and high-density storage servers, there is either far more spacing for airflow - around 5-10mm, or else they use 5000RPM high-pressure screamy boys to ram air through the tiny gaps, eardrums be damned.


I don't think there are any 10K SATA drives on the market any more. 10K SAS, sure - but this isn't a SAS backplane, it's a SATA backplane.
Its kinda hard to tell but it dosn't look like its any more dense or restricted than any other NAS I've worked with or the 2U NASs I've built in Supermicro chassis. The Supermicro stuff is really well made/designed and has a shroud to channel the air where its supposed to go but even so the backplane is in the way not mater what you do, this case dosn't look any worse.

The 140mm in this would be fine, there just needs to be some air moving past the drives. Yeah the drive in the middle right behind the fan motor is going to run hotter than the others no doubt but it should still be fine.

The 2U 8 bay Supermicros I've worked in have 3 80mm fans as well and and its just the one system on its own outside of a hot rack those systems stay very reasonably quiet. The fans have very high top end but they are temp controlled and aside from initial power on I've never heard them come anywhere near that top speed. A NAS dosn't need that much air flow, they should have the capacity for it if cooling in the rack or row has an issue but under normal conditions they should be pretty quiet. Compute hosts on the other hand.... yeah those are loud.
Posted on Reply
#18
Chrispy_
OperandiThe 140mm in this would be fine, there just needs to be some air moving past the drives. Yeah the drive in the middle right behind the fan motor is going to run hotter than the others no doubt but it should still be fine.

The 2U 8 bay Supermicros I've worked in have 3 80mm fans as well and and its just the one system on its own outside of a hot rack those systems stay very reasonably quiet. The fans have very high top end but they are temp controlled and aside from initial power on I've never heard them come anywhere near that top speed. A NAS dosn't need that much air flow, they should have the capacity for it if cooling in the rack or row has an issue but under normal conditions they should be pretty quiet. Compute hosts on the other hand.... yeah those are loud.
I have a bunch of 2U 12-bay Supermicro chassis where the entire front panel is just solid hard disk with almost zero gap for air. The difference there is that the frame/backplane itself is sinked so the drives stay cool despite limited airflow because the frame they're screwed into is cooled effectively.
Posted on Reply
Add your own comment