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Pros: Price, very easy to set up, includes power supply, same size as other AV components, looks great, front panel audio/usb/firewire connectors.
Cons: Doesn't come with a DVD/CD drive cover so the activity light on my drive is exposed (very bright when watching movies). This is a very small con, the problem was easliy resolved with a small piece of electrical tape to cover the dvd drive LED.
Power supply is not replacable, but for what I paid not a big deal.
Other Thoughts: Thanks to the good folks here that have left good reviews I knew what to expect when buying this case. Some people gripe that it's very cramped and you have to remove the power supply to get your hard drive(s) in. You don't, but to make life easy you should. It only takes 4 screws and it's out, I didn't find it difficult at all.
It took me all of 25 minutes to throw together this box. The best decision I made was buying a motherboard with everythign already on it. Easiest build ever!
Here is my very successfull build list that plays blu-ray perfectly with Vista Ultimate 32 and TotalMeadia Theatre installed:
hec Black 0.7mm Thickness SECC 7K09 Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case, Gigabyte GA-E7AUM-DS2H, Intel E6600, Kingston KVR800D2K2/4GR , HITACHI Deskstar 7K1000, LITE-ON Black 4X Blu-ray DVD-ROM SATA Model DH-4O1S-66 - OEM, nMEDIAPC HTPCKB-B Wireless Keyboard & WMC Remote
This review is from: GIGABYTE GA-E7AUM-DS2H LGA 775 NVIDIA GeForce 9400 HDMI Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: This board is the perfect HTPC board. I have never had an easier build that with this board. Zero problems. Blu-Ray plays flawlessly using the full version of TotalMedia Theater. Dolby TrueHD plays no problem with the Gigabyte/NVidia drivers provided and with Vista Ultimate 32 bit as the OS.
The only wires I have connected are power, HDMI, and a serial cable to my UPS. Which makes for a very clean looking setup.
Since this board has it all, the setup was completely painless, just plug in your cpu, heatsink, mem, hd, blu-ray, power connectors, done!
Really like the low power management features that come with the board. Keeps things underclocked/undervolted and running cool when the cpu is idle.
Cons: Not a hit against the board itself, but newegg does not mention that it does have a serial header. In fact, it has both a serial and LPT/Parallel headers but the cables are not included with the board.
I wish I knew this at time of purchase, it would have saved me the extra $$ I spent on a low profile pci serial card. If you do need to add a low-profile serial connector be sure to add this newegg part:
Other Thoughts: Make sure you set up the audio in both the Vista's audio properties to 5.1 or 7.1 using the Dolby drivers, you will also need do the same in TotalMedia Theater, otherwise they default to 2 channel stereo.
Highly recommend this board to anyone that is building an HTPC. Everything worked great, here is my HTPC build list:
hec Black 0.7mm Thickness SECC 7K09 Micro ATX Media Center / HTPC Case, Gigabyte GA-E7AUM-DS2H, Intel E6600, Kingston KVR800D2K2/4GR , HITACHI Deskstar 7K1000, LITE-ON Black 4X Blu-ray DVD-ROM SATA Model DH-4O1S-66 - OEM, nMEDIAPC HTPCKB-B Wireless Keyboard & WMC Remote.