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Old 12-19-2012, 03:10 PM   #1
mcveigh
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Default need HTPC case reccomendation.

My HTPC case is 9-10 years old (an old coolermaster atc-620)
Airflow has always been bad in the design and it's a bitch to work on.
I recently put a Blu-ray drive in. I had to take all my hard drives out to do it.

The drop down cover on the front wont close anymore and my little boy has been running into that edge sometimes if he's playing by the TV. So I need something new.

I'm looking for something under $100 hopefully but $125 max.
minimum needs:
Micro-ATX
2*3.5in HD plus 1*2.5in HD (or 3*3.5in HD)
1 optical drive.

120mm fans preferred.
I have a full size power supply without modular cables, so I need room for those. I use onboard video so no room for a video card needed.

the best choices I see are nMedia or silverstone.

Silverstone GD05

nMediapc 5000B


nMediapc 7000B


Lian Li might be a choice but their deisgns looked cramped.
I don't like that nmediapc has a spot for an LCD display on their cases I won't put one in. But their prices are great.

I'd really like a case that had a full lockable front cover that also covered the power button (kids like to push buttons at the wrong time)

something like the GD06 but with the power butto behind the door.


any ideas are appreciated!!!


UPDATE:----------------------------------------------
I got the GD05

love it but...my powersupply cables were too short because the power supply of my old case was on the left. I had to get a new power supply, couple new SATA cables.

this thing is a lot more cramped than I thought!!
I got rid of the rubber airflow director thingy, it made it too hard to connect my second hard drive.
My CPU fan wouldn't fit but the good news is with 2*120mm fans blowing on the heatsink so far it hasn't overheated.

all in all I am very happy with it! and it looks great.
thanks everyone.
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Last edited by mcveigh; 01-10-2013 at 01:27 PM. Reason: update
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:56 PM   #2
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I have a GD05, and its a great case. Easy to work with, we'll documented, and good airflow with the three included 120mm fans.
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Old 12-19-2012, 10:48 PM   #3
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I have this

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16811163174

in a front end client. I only have one SSD hdd in it but I believe it will support two or three full size 3.5" hdd's. I use onboard video with a G620 processor. It does support a normal ATX power supply but (and this meets your requirement) won't support modular psu's as the psu is too close to the back of the optical disc drive. Normal psus' cable bundle fits beneath the odd.

I have pics on this board of my build so you can see see it if you're interested.
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Old 12-20-2012, 07:10 AM   #4
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I saw that case but my analog tuner card (Nvidia Dual TV) is full height.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammor View Post
I have this

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16811163174

in a front end client. I only have one SSD hdd in it but I believe it will support two or three full size 3.5" hdd's. I use onboard video with a G620 processor. It does support a normal ATX power supply but (and this meets your requirement) won't support modular psu's as the psu is too close to the back of the optical disc drive. Normal psus' cable bundle fits beneath the odd.

I have pics on this board of my build so you can see see it if you're interested.

That's a sweet case. I love the looks. Does the dvd door swing open? I see these in a lot of cases and I'd rather just have the face of the dvd drive sicking out so I can eject the disc rather than fool with a door. My barebone kit does this as well and I'm thinking of just taking it off.

I'm also thinking of making a new build with the Fratal Design Node 304 case:

http://www.fractal-design.com/?view=...gory=2&prod=94

I love the look of it as well, not sure if it meets the OP's reqs though.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:01 AM   #6
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I really like some of those small square cases but with my current setup I need one wide enough to have my TV sit on it. Maybe after getting a wall mount I could.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:43 AM   #7
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+1 for gd05 silverstone
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:29 PM   #8
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I have the GD05 and it's great. It looks like Silverstone has updated it to USB3 and bumped the price up a little.

I wouldn't worry too much about the power button. With Win7 you can set the power button to "do nothing" under power options. Set the sleep button to "do nothing" as well (they could be one in the same button). Now just pressing the power button won't do a thing unless it is off or in sleep, in which case it will just turn on. Holding the power button in will still turn off the PC though. But you have to hold it in about 3-5 seconds.

It's the reset button you will have to worry more about. One press of the reset button and it will reboot, and then Murphy's law will probably boot you into safe mode. Of course you can just not connect the reset button to the motherboard.

The 120mm fans that it comes with can be a bit noisy if left to run at full speed. You can however under-volt them. Add a fan controller. Use fan control software like ASUS Fan Xpert. Or replace them with low RPM fans. For your typical HTPC use you won't need the fans to run at full speed.

I added this simple Fan controller to my HTPC.

With the GD05 you are limited to the size of aftermarket CPU cooler you can use if you also use the CD/DVD drive bay. That pretty much rules out the use of "tower" type CPU coolers.

If your motherboard board doesn't support USB3 you may not be able to use the USB ports on the front of the newer model GD05. That is something to look into.

Other then those issues the case is laid out really well. I also have a non modular Seasonic power supply. I have no issues with power cables being able to neatly reach all connectors. And the unused cables are folded up and zip tied in the space under the hard drives.

Last edited by lucklessgorath; 12-20-2012 at 01:01 PM.
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucklessgorath View Post
I have the GD05 and it's great. It looks like Silverstone has updated it to USB3 and bumped the price up a little.

I wouldn't worry too much about the power button. With Win7 you can set the power button to "do nothing" under power options. Set the sleep button to "do nothing" as well (they could be one in the same button). Now just pressing the power button won't do a thing unless it is off or in sleep, in which case it will just turn on. Holding the power button in will still turn off the PC though. But you have to hold it in about 3-5 seconds.

It's the reset button you will have to worry more about. One press of the reset button and it will reboot, and then Murphy's law will probably boot you into safe mode. Of course you can just not connect the reset button to the motherboard.

The 120mm fans that it comes with can be a bit noisy if left to run at full speed. You can however under-volt them. Add a fan controller. Use fan control software like ASUS Fan Xpert. Or replace them with low RPM fans. For your typical HTPC use you won't need the fans to run at full speed.

I added this simple Fan controller to my HTPC.

With the GD05 you are limited to the size of aftermarket CPU cooler you can use if you also use the CD/DVD drive bay. That pretty much rules out the use of "tower" type CPU coolers.

If your motherboard board doesn't support USB3 you may not be able to use the USB ports on the front of the newer model GD05. That is something to look into.

Other then those issues the case is laid out really well. I also have a non modular Seasonic power supply. I have no issues with power cables being able to neatly reach all connectors. And the unused cables are folded up and zip tied in the space under the hard drives.

thanks!

I actually disconnected my reset button ages ago as that was what my son liked the most

I think I will go for the GD05. I am still tempted by that nmedia 7000, that would leave me money to get a small SSD for a boot drive.
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Old 12-20-2012, 03:27 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thestrangebrew1 View Post
That's a sweet case. I love the looks. Does the dvd door swing open? I see these in a lot of cases and I'd rather just have the face of the dvd drive sicking out so I can eject the disc rather than fool with a door. My barebone kit does this as well and I'm thinking of just taking it off.
I just ordered that case for a new build. I believe the cover for the external 5.25 bay is removed if you put an optical drive in, so you wouldn't have to futz with a door, but you do have to think about how your bare optical drive will look. I probably won't get to the built until after the new year, but I'll try and remember to post something to confirm (or refute) what I just said.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:16 PM   #11
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That's a sweet case. I love the looks. Does the dvd door swing open?
Doesn't have a door for the DVD. Just take out the 5.25" removable cover. The face of the ODD will be what you see.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:19 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by pkscout View Post
I just ordered that case for a new build. I believe the cover for the external 5.25 bay is removed if you put an optical drive in, so you wouldn't have to futz with a door, but you do have to think about how your bare optical drive will look. I probably won't get to the built until after the new year, but I'll try and remember to post something to confirm (or refute) what I just said.
I didn't care for the ASUS branding of the ODD but it only bothered me for about 10 mins. It is located in my TV room and the room is dark enough that I don't even notice the ASUS name on the front of the ODD.
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:03 PM   #13
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I think the similar model the GD04 has a DVD face cover it that's your style.
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:00 AM   #14
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Amazon has it for the same price but with free shipping, so save $10. Actually, it is that way with all Silverstone cases from Amazon. Same price as Newegg, but with free shipping.

OP, check out the other mATX Grandia cases, GD04 and GD06. They have different fronts but are the same case. I think the GD04 has a flip down door.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:21 AM   #15
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Amazon has it for the same price but with free shipping, so save $10. Actually, it is that way with all Silverstone cases from Amazon. Same price as Newegg, but with free shipping.

OP, check out the other mATX Grandia cases, GD04 and GD06. They have different fronts but are the same case. I think the GD04 has a flip down door.

I saw this too as I was browsing for cases last night. I may just go with this one to get my build below $300.
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Old 12-23-2012, 09:27 AM   #16
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With the GD05 you are limited to the size of aftermarket CPU cooler you can use if you also use the CD/DVD drive bay. That pretty much rules out the use of "tower" type CPU coolers.

.....

Other then those issues the case is laid out really well. I also have a non modular Seasonic power supply. I have no issues with power cables being able to neatly reach all connectors. And the unused cables are folded up and zip tied in the space under the hard drives.
Two quick follow on questions with this statement. Im also looking to buy this case (well the GD04 or GD05), from what ive seen it seems to be the best in the price range and size.

1. first question, IRT the Cpu cooling, will a Scythe SCBSK-2100 BIG Shuriken 2 fit? I have an ASRock Z77 Extreme4-M with Intel I5-3570K ready to go, but understand the BIG shuriken is the way to go for cooling it.

2. For PSU's I was looking at the Seasonic 460W 80 Plus Gold Fanless ATX12V/EPS12V. This is my first build and trying to sort out what fits and what doesnt.

Thanks
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:25 PM   #17
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first question, IRT the Cpu cooling, will a Scythe SCBSK-2100 BIG Shuriken 2 fit? I have an ASRock Z77 Extreme4-M with Intel I5-3570K ready to go, but understand the BIG shuriken is the way to go for cooling it.
Just curious, what makes you think a stock cooler won't suffice? Are you planning to do more than HTPC work with it?
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Old 12-23-2012, 04:05 PM   #18
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Currently, not really. But I anticipate a need to do video format conversions at a min in addition to normal htpc stuff. Plus I have read that the ceton tv turner runs hot and I want to keep all heat down. I have never built a pc before but everyone I have talked to said to ditch the cooler that comes with the CPU. Of all the components, this isn't a cost factor so I didn't see a need to argue much.
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:40 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neflhiem View Post
Two quick follow on questions with this statement. Im also looking to buy this case (well the GD04 or GD05), from what ive seen it seems to be the best in the price range and size.

1. first question, IRT the Cpu cooling, will a Scythe SCBSK-2100 BIG Shuriken 2 fit? I have an ASRock Z77 Extreme4-M with Intel I5-3570K ready to go, but understand the BIG shuriken is the way to go for cooling it.

2. For PSU's I was looking at the Seasonic 460W 80 Plus Gold Fanless ATX12V/EPS12V. This is my first build and trying to sort out what fits and what doesnt.

Thanks
I'm using the cpu cooler that came boxed with my Athlon II. I had considered using the Big Shuriken myself before I built my system as I know it's a fairly popular cooler for this Silverstone case. But I've found the OEM cooler to be acceptable. I've read that there is 70mm of clearance with a DVD/BluRay drive installed. Scythe says on their website that the Big Shuriken 2 Rev. B needs 58mm of clearance. If you do go with the Big Shuriken be careful of what RAM you choose. Just to be on the safe side I would avoid any RAM with a heat-spreader. I might even opt for low profile Samsung RAM.

I don't know if a fanless PSU is or isn't compatible with an i5 3570K.
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:39 PM   #20
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from the video reviews I've been looking at on youtube, the main concern is the optical drive hitting the cpu cooler.

Neflhiem, if you don't overclock and don't care about noise. the factory cooler is almost always fine.

I run an aftermarket cooler for two reasons. I overclock slightly and need a decent cooler, but I want it quiet as well. My current case runs hot and has terrible airflow. I bought my current Scythe Big Shuriken just incase I needed a low profile one later...and it turns out I do!
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:45 PM   #21
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I don't plan on overclocking, but noise is an issue as this is of course sitting in my living room, also the reason I'm looking at the fanless psu
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:46 PM   #22
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I've built or rebuilt 10 PCs in the past 7 or 8 years for stuff like HTPC server; media front end client; file server; dedicated router / firewall; video editing; and of course browsing and emailing. All have been Intel (nothing against AMD - intel just had the better value at the time)

I've used stock coolers on every one except one; the one for video editing and the after market cooler was so loud, I eventually replaced it with the stock cooler that came with the processor. Its a Q9550 and have had no issues converting home vids to different video formats or using Handbrake to rip multiple DVDs to different formats with the stock cooler.

Unless you're doing hard core gaming with your PC, I'd say good case air flow and case fans are more important than a turbo prop over your processor.

If you're convinced you need an after mkt cooler, you might take a look at the closed loop liquid coolers out there now. Zalman, Corsair, and Thermaltake make some highly regarded coolers that are inexpensive, quiet, and perform well. I haven't used one but I've read good things about them. CPU magazine had a nice write up several months ago about the Corsair Hydro series:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16835181010
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:28 PM   #23
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update: see OP
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:33 PM   #24
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I have this HSF in my GD05 with an ODD installed and clearance was no issue.
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:14 PM   #25
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I love this case. I just put another htpc together using this case last night and its a lot bigger than I thought it would be (even though I took measurements). I thought my wife would like it better than the foxconn bare bones kit I used, but she actually doesn't like it as much. Its actually bigger than my receiver. Oh well, she'll just have to deal with it lol
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