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SILVERSTONE Black Aluminum front panel, 0.8 SECC body PT12B Mini ITX Media Center / HTPC Case
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: This is a solid case for an HTPC build that is sleek and low profile. Like the other reviewer said, it's one of the easiest builds to just drop components in and go - with the exception of maybe stiffer cables such as SATA connectors; the height not lending itself to the most robust bend radii for cables. Right angle connectors are your friend.
Sleek appearance
The option for an optical drive give it the edge over its competitor (PC-Q05B).

Cons: Cannot fit a 3.5" drive in this case without a modification of the optical bay bracket. I took some sheers and clipped out a .4" square out of the bracket to fit a 3.5" drive into the case - it's not possible otherwise. If it were longer you could also fit in an optical drive, but this modification makes it impossible.
Hey that sweet 2.5" drive bracket? Make that a double decker so you can fit two 2.5" drives in. The height of the case would permit this.
Decent ventilation for a case this size.

Other Thoughts: Easy case to work with, just wish it was longer so I could fit everything I want into it. That low profile intel heatsink (Intel HTS1155LP) takes up a ton of real estate and makes packaging more difficult I imagine. Shorter rubber feet would be cool too - especially for those not using the included VESA mount. Overall a solid case, should be priced cheaper (~$60) given the amount of material and the easy sheetmetal bends and fabrication. I can understand why it's not though - it caters to crowd where it will see smaller production volumes.
Build components:
ECS H61H2-TI (this motheboard fits!)
Intel HTS1155LP CPU cooler (thanks to other newegg users who posted this cooler in their reviews)
Core i3-3220 (perhaps overkill)
Dell LA65NS0-00 19.5V adapter from an old laptop
Team Xtreme 2x4gb ddr3 so-dimm kit
Seagate 1.5TB green drive (3.5" drive)

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ECS H61H2-TI LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

5 out of 5 eggs Nice thin-mini-itx 04/17/2013

This review is from: ECS H61H2-TI LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Truly is a "thin mini-itx" form factor; any case that states it's limited to the Intel DH61AG Intel DQ77KB motherboards this motherboard *should* fit. I say this with caution as it appears the location of the CPU slot is identical to that of the Intel boards - meaning you *should* be able to use the low profile Intel cooler with this board and other cases problem free. I paired this with the Silverstone PT12B case, Intel HTS1155LP heatsink, i3-3220 processor and it all fits flawlessly. The cost of this board is also nearly half that of the Intel DH61AG and even more so than the Intel BOXDQ77KB. Two Mini-pci connectors. USB 3.0 slots.

Cons: Board only has 2 SATA ports (so does the Intel DH61AG)
SATA ports are only SATA 3Gb/s
Resetting bios returns SATA mode to default IDE-mode (AHCI is probably where it should always default).
Weird jumper config required to update bios - make sure you visit the website and follow the instructions closely if you plan to update bios - and unplug power when you reset the jumper pin or else the board will boot up (weird).
Reliability at this stage is unknown.

Other Thoughts: This is a great little motherboard and compared to its intel branded counterparts it is quite the bargain. With any ECS motherboard I expect some sort of quirks - hopefully they don't lead to instabilities. 4 SATA ports would be ideal: one for the solid state drive, one for the big slow storage drive and another for the blu-ray drive. That would be ideal for a HTPC which is what this board is being used for. This and the HD homerun prime are the foundation of a solid low profile Digital Cable Tuner with many other media options. I would have rated this board a solid 4-star rating had it not been for the price. Expect some quirks, but nothing out of control with this board.

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PNY VCQFX1800-PCIE-PB Quadro FX 1800 768MB 192-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 Workstation Video Card
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: Installation was a breeze with windows 7 x64, drivers were automatically detected and installed. Nvidia website also has the drivers for windows 7 available for download. This card, along with a core i7 and seagate 7200.12 harddrives is superior to my workstation machine running dual xeon processors (skt 771), a quadro FX 4500 gpu, and 15k RPM SAS harddrives. Solidworks 2009 x64 does not miss a beat even with full visualization on and real view graphics when opening a moderately complex assembly. This card is also 1/3 the cost of the FX 4500 when it was new years ago.
From every review on the internet it appears as if the quadro cards have drivers better optimized for CAD systems such as solidworks when compared to the FireGL equivalents. FireGL cards appear to be stronger in programs such as Maya.

Cons: People buying this card for the wrong applications then writing misleading reviews on newegg.
People comparing this card to gaming cards - apples to oranges. Even the most expensive gaming cards cannot compete with the openGL performance of the lower end workstation cards.
Price.

Other Thoughts: We built a computer specifically for solidworks 2009. Core i7 920, asus p6t deluxe, 3x 1TB 7200.12 seagate harddrives, 12gb G. Skill DDR3-1600 memory, corsair 750w power supply. Though windows 7 x64 is not officially supported by solidworks, 2009 appears to run very well and handles large assemblies well.
Depending on the application, one could probably get away with the much cheaper quadro FX 580 and still have excellent performance within solidworks.
Workstation cards are expensive; developer costs and support is what you pay for and its worth every penny. These cards do not sell at the same volumes as gaming cards so naturally they are more expensive.

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Jeffrey C.'s Profile

Display Name: Jeffrey C.

Date Joined: 02/05/03

  • Reviews: 4
  • Helpfulness: 3
  • First Review: 06/21/09
  • Last Review: 04/17/13
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