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-Plenty of connectivity options
-Plays 1080p without a shadow of a doubt utilizing DXVA
-Quiet fan on stock heatsink
Cons: -Can barely handle installing windows updates! CPU utilization was hovering between 50-75% during Windows update routine after fresh install of win7 x64. During .net 4.0 install, cpu was maxed out at times
-Single channel memory controller
-When paired with Antec 100 isk (N82E16811129095), the board did not fit over the MB standoffs correctly, two screws ended up getting tightened at a slight angle. A second note is that the backplate did not line up correctly. All ports were still accessible. One last note, if you use the same case I did for the HTPC install, be very careful when installing the motherboard and have patience. It was a pain, but it can be done.
Other Thoughts: I can verify DXVA utilization. CPU usage hovers around 30-40%. Without DXVA this thing cannot play 1080 content without maxing cpu which results in lost frames. I use gigabit lan not wireless. Unraid server stores movies. They are pulled over wired lan. MPC processes video while ffdshow sends audio to receiver. Even my wife noticed a difference in video/audio quality within the first 15 mins of our first test movie (Cars).
--Media server=unraid by lime technology
Media Player setup:
-Media player classic home cinema x86,
--internal matroska filter unchecked as well as ac3/dts/lpcm
--EVR custom pres with default options
-FFdshow x86(tryouts) processes audio and passes it through to the receiver over Spdif/toslink
-ONLY display driver was installed not the full CCC suite.
Runs like it should to my relief. I hate reading "reviews" online and then "learning" about surprises when I receive the actual product. Hope this helps...
Cons: -Poor Construction
-The bottom surface that sits on top of the cpu was not smooth at all!
-At low RPM, there was a high pitched whining noise
-Temps went up a-lot vs use of stock AM3 cooler
Other Thoughts: I read the previous review and wasn't too worries, but boy was I wrong!
Arctic Silver was used as thermal compound.
Pros: Nice looking, plenty of front ports, fits full size atx psu, rubber mounts for hdd's.
Cons: Stock airflow is 2x60mm fans in the back + one 90mm on the side that ends up getting blocked because of cables. Ventilation holes at the top do not help at all. Felt like on oven at times holding my hand just inches above the top of the case. This case is annoying to work with. The holes for expansion card support are not cut properly. On top of this, because of the way the expansion card slots are cut into the case, the entire back end of the case ends up being pretty flimsy. The metal drive bay that holds 5.25"/3.5" drives is awkward to work with and is hard to get back on without adjustment. Screw holes for your drives are not precise!
Other Thoughts: All my components ended up cooking inside this case. Why oh why didn't they include another fan on the other side? It looks like they thought about it.
If you end up getting this case, make sure to get a low-profile video card.
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