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Pros: Very flexible for a Mini-ITX sized board. Plays with the big boys. Build a desktop replacement in a "LAN Party sized machine I could easily move.
Cons: Only 4 SATA ports, only 1 slot (but this is a Mini ITX architecture limitation) Only 1 system fan header
Other Thoughts: I wanted to built the smallest possible high power PC and I think I succeeded with a few limits. With only 4 SATA ports I had to pick my I/O devices carefully. It needed a CD/DVD/BR drive and an SSD for the C Drive - that's 2 down. I added 2 1TB 2.5" form factor laptop type drives and I was done. A few more would have been nice. I squeezed all this with a Silverstone SFF 430w P/S and an ATI (AMD) Radeon 7700 short video card in a Lian-Li PC-Q09 case. I used an i5 3570K cpu. It makes for quite a screamer earning a Windows Experience Index of 7.5 with no overclocking.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: LIAN LI PC-Q07 Black Aluminum Mini-ITX Tower Computer Case
Pros: Beautiful build quality. Lian Li has a well built jewel of a case with no sharp corners and quality brackets and standoffs.
Cons: Why the tiny screws holding the sides on? It begs you to drop or lose these tiny, short flathead #4's that will be a mother to replace. Why is the optical writer rack riveted in? Should use screws so it can be dropped down. I mounted a Kingston 120GB SSD and a WD 750GB 2.5 drive above the optical drive. Lian LI you should not have let that space go to waste. The bottom of the optical drive rack can accept a 3.5 inch card reader / usb device. The front needs notching for it too. The HDD rack in the bottom wastes space better used for a filtered intake fan. Shrink that USB 3.0 assembly. Sticks into the case too far making video card installation difficult.
Other Thoughts: This case has a ton of missed potential that if the time is taken can make an amazing powerhouse. The 2.5 SSD and HDD available today can slide above the optical drive saving the space in the bottom. I cut that out and mounted an intake 120mm fan with a filter to supplement and cool the video card. A short MSI 7770 video card fit in the case in my Gigabyte GA- Z77N Wi-Fi board only after carving away the outer black sheath on the USB 3.0 front panel connector. That was way too big and stuck out into the case way too far. I put Isolate 1 inch pads for feet to give the fan space to pull air and quiet the case further. In addition, I mounted a slim 120mm fan to the side next to the SFF 400w Silverstone Power Supply. I mounted the PS to blow onto the Samuel 17 cooler on the i5 3570K. The side fan did exhaust. That still left space to velcro an additional WD 2.5 1TB HDD to the inside of the front panel. Very tight but doable fit. Stays cool. Does everything a big Mid Tower ATX monster can do. A little limited with no more SATA available but really sweet at less than 10 pounds and whisper quiet.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: It's tiny, well it's Mini-ITX after all, but packs a big punch. With a Z77 architecture you can do a lot. Everything except the full range of voltage adjustments you would need for overclocking. 2of the SATA ports are 6 GB/sec which is nice.
Cons: It's an ITX limitation so no eggs off, but it would be nice if the form factor supported a second slot. It's needed for hi-po VGA cards as well as growth space for an eSATA or other card. Needs a couple more SATA ports. It only has 4 which can really limit choices. It needs 6 since there's no way to add an eSATA card and a video card.
Other Thoughts: Mini-ITX has severe limitations which will bring out your creativity or frustrate you. Need to think out your growth plans before embarking on the project. You might need to step up to Micro-ATX with its additional PCIe slots and SATA portsREAD FULL REVIEW