Our CES coverage concludes with a look at Silverstone's enclosures
Officially, the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) concluded last Friday, but for us, the festivities don't come to an end until Silverstone pays us a visit with its latest cases in tow. That's our story, anyway -- another explanation why Silverstone had to come to us post CES is because, well, have you ever seen The Hangover? Replace the setting with CES and insert Gordon and Jimmy as two of the characters, and you begin to see why we'd prefer to keep those videos under lock and key.
Nvidia's newest GPU was built to provide maximum horsepower to small gaming PCs, so we built a Mini-ITX system to see if the card would fit, and if it could keep cool and quiet under pressure
The Mission Nvidia's GeForce GTX Titan video card has a serious cool factor. It's the fastest single-GPU card on the market, for one thing. And it beats the competition without sounding like a fighter jet or getting hot enough to trigger a meltdown. Finally, at 10.5 inches, it's shorter than the reigning single-card champ, the GTX 690, by half an inch, making the Titan suitable for deployment in small form factor (SFF) builds. In fact, when Nvidia launched this card, it specifically pointed out that it was designed for use in SSF rigs, so we just had to see how things would play out in a Mini-ITX environment. And why stop with the card? We figured we might as well throw in a nice CPU, motherboard, a fast SSD, and some extra cooling so we could dabble in overclocking. Even though we started off with the innocent goal of gauging the experience of building a Titan-based SFF rig, in the end we decided to see just how far we could push this tiny system, and came away surprised by how much performance can be had in a rig with such a small footprint.
Note: This feature was originally featured in the June 2013 issue of the magazine.
Small form factor (SFF) systems are growing in popularity, especially as PC gamers look to venture out of their bedrooms and into the living room. Luckily for them, SFF cases are increasingly capable of housing high-end hardware, which is thanks in part to optimized designs but also power efficient hardware. We bring this up because boutique system builder Origin PC just dropped us a note to let us know it's now building systems inside Silverstone's box-like SG10 SFF chassis.
The whirlwind of product announcements and general craziness that accompanies the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is now in our rear-view mirror, and unfortunately, we didn't get a chance to stop by Silverstone's booth. Fortunately, Silverstone essentially brought its booth to us, toting several products to San Francisco that were previously on display at the convention, including a small form facor case that only costs $50. When's the last time you could say that about a Silverstone chassis?
After reportedly making the rounds at several trade shows, Silverstone is just about ready to offer up its flagship Zeus Series ZM1350 power supply to retail. On paper, the ZM1350 is a beastly PSU that pushes the limit of how much output wattage is reasonably attainable from a typical home outlet. It's rated at 1,350W of continuous output, and up to 1,500W of peak power at 50C.
SILVERSTONE'S TEMJIN TJ08-E is a microATX chassis that strikes a nearly perfect balance between practicality and performance. The TJ08-E is fabricated primarily from steel, but its front panel is brushed aluminum, with two USB 3.0 ports (with an internal header), a mic input, a headphone output, and power and reset switches. The front I/O ports are located beneath the two 5.25-inch drive bays and above the chassis’ only fan, an 18cm Air Penetrator concealed behind a large mesh cover. The fan features an on/off switch built into the side of the case, and there’s a large removable dust filter between the mesh cover and the fan.
The TJ08-E is surprisingly roomy for a small form factor chassis. Although it measures just 8.26 inches wide, 15.2 inches long, and 14.7 inches tall, it provides enough interior space to accommodate a GTX 590 videocard without having to move anything. The TJ08-E also provides four internal hard drive slots, a single 2.5-inch mounting bracket, and a dual-purpose 3.5-inch drive bay. We had no problem popping our full-size drives into the bays and securing them with screws, although the backs of the drives protrude from the rear of the hard drive cage. The hard drive cage can be completely removed, in case you need extra room, and a CPU-cooler support at the bottom of the case will prevent a large heatsink from banging against its floor.
SilverStone is getting ready to ship a new addition to its Precision Series computer case line, the PS07 (SST-PS07B). Small in stature, this is the first Precision Series enclosure designed for micro ATX motherboards, and it also supports mini DTX and mini ITX just for good measure. The all-black chassis measures 210mm (W) x 374mm (H) x 400mm (D) and weighs 5.2kg.
When you're outfitting a new computer, it can be tempting to just buy the cheapest no-name case you can find, slap your new parts into it, and call it a day. While that might have been a valid choice in ye olde beige days—heck, early Dream Machine builds didn't even list the case—it's not one we'd recommend today. This month, we round up eight cases, from the budget to the extreme, to see how they measure up to the task of holding your precious modern components.
From the moment you first see it, it’s clear that the Temjin TJ11 is Silverstone’s balls-to-the-wall attempt to create the best chassis money can buy. Silverstone packs in virtually every trick in its arsenal—from the mid-chassis air-intake duct found in previous Temjin cases to the unibody aluminum frame of the Fortress FT02 to the rotated motherboard tray first seen in the Raven RV01. The result is massive, possibly overengineered, and awesome.
The Silverstone Raven RV03 is a solid case, and gets points for ingenuity. It may look a little garish and feel a little plasticky, but it’s roomy, features a stunning amount of ports and slots, and offers a crazy-organized build and great cooling.