October 14th, 2003, 04:40 PM
Small Form Factor? (SFF)
I've been looking at building a replacement PC for the GF as a Christmas present. I was looking at the standard ATX mobos in a nice moded Lian-Li case, but someone turned me on to the newer SFF boxes.
Previously, there was a lot of limitation. the boards had few (if any) expansion slots, and you were pretty much forced to use whichever integrated hardware they put in the box.
The latest generation of equipment seems a lot better, providing "barebones" set-ups with AGP/PCI slots and room for multiple 3.5/5.25 optical/disk drives.
Does anyone have any experience with these boxes? Her primary use is photo/dv editing, but she's also a gamer on the side. I've pretty much narrowed my hunt down to a couple choices.
The Shuttle SB62G2 is a nice unit, and as a manufacturer has pretty much set the standard for SFF equipment. but it's Intel only, and well... I'm not much of an Intel fan. and ummm.. the shuttles come in pretty colors. Remember this is for a gf who like cheesy **** like that... heh
the Biostar iDEQ 200N is a nice box, with AMD support
Ideally, I'd love to get my hands on Abit's new SFF box called DigiDice, but I haven't heard anything about a release date. If anyone can shed light on this bad-boy I'd be grateful. That thing "looks" incredible, with lots of features not yet available on the other systems. But of course, I can't find any information on the release date.
My biggest concern with all of these is going to be compatiility with heat control and noise a close second.
Any input on your experiences with these SFF oxes is appreciated, thanks!
Never because of, Always in spite of.
October 17th, 2003, 10:52 PM
The iDEQ 200N sounds reasnoble i suppose, i tried a making a PC a while ago, a client had heard that they where to dogs bollocks and wouldnt take anything else, the mail problem I ran into was compatibility and the cpu runing well hot, I instlled a better fan but the noise was outrageous, it only had one memory slot ( which got in the way of the CD-ROM when i put it in)
I sacked the whole idea in the end, nothing seemd to have been thought out with them very much atall.
Maybe they have improved now I dont know and am certainly in no hurry to find out!
November 3rd, 2003, 03:45 PM
Well, I purchased the Shuttle XPC SB51G last week and I'm going to guinea-pig it on the sister in-law. If all goes well with her (she's really not a hardcore end-user) I'll consider it for my own.
My only real drawback to this model is the Socket 478 board (not an intel fan), and a paltry 200W power supply. Otherwise it's seemed rock-solid so far. The fan is not too loud, and they are combining the PS fan with the cooler for an oil-cooled cpu sink. (I dont not certain how effective that would be for a higher-end rig.
This board has 333/400fsb on the 478 Socket, I installed a p4 2.4
2 Dimm slots to which I installed 1 512 333mhz DDR stick
Onboard intel extreme gpu (Also has an AGP slot)
AC '97 onboard audio with 5.1 support (has spdif on front/back!)
Room for 1 CD-R 5.25 bay, and 2 HD 3.5 bays (ata100)
They didn't skimp on the ports. standard ps/2 kb & mouse, 2 serial, 2 1394, 2 USB, rj-45, and standard audio in/out on both the front and back
It's not really as beefy as I would want for myself, but the girl is a web surfer/music burner. She really doesn't need bleeding-edge performance.
But probably the biggest diescision in my purchasing this box (and I laugh at myself for this) was cosmetic.
Yes folks, I intend to build a Hello Kitty mod!
A nice set of stickers will adarn the case. I've reconnoitered a hello kitty pink keyboard and mouse. I also managed to snag an old 15" lcd monitor to which I will apply disgustingly cute pink paint.
Laugh and be amazed...
Never because of, Always in spite of.