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 Post subject: Silencing a Shuttle system - worth it?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:39 pm 
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I've been researching building a mini-ITX pseudo-gaming PC, based on the upcoming Silverstone Sugo SG05 and probably something like an MSI IM-Q35. I hadn't seriously considered a Shuttle system until I took a very close look yesterday at a couple new-ish models - SP45H7 and SG45H7. And I'd want to use a Shuttle PC62 power supply (200W, fanless, with external power brick), and make it fit if it doesn't have the appropriate mounting holes. The size is only a little bigger than the Silverstone case, so I could live with it.

But can I silence the rest of the system?

First of all, I would be doing RAID with a couple SSD's, and then have another 500Gb 2.5" drive for storage. Shuttle says that there's not onboard RAID, so I guess I'd have to go with a PCI card for that... Would that be worse/better/same as an onboard solution? My concern is that standard PCI might not have enough bandwidth. Another alternative is going with one of the slightly bigger Shuttle systems. And also, I shouldn't have a problem fitting 3 notebook drives with some slight ghetto-modding, should I?

Fans - I would definitely replace the one in the back with a very quiet one... and probably put in another fan wherever I can make it fit. First of all, any problems with those suggestions? And secondly, where should I put the extra fan for maximum cooling, ideally without cutting any new holes (at least on the exterior of the case)? Note that I would be using a PCIe graphics card, so anything that gets a bit of airflow there would be nice (e.g., on the "left" side of the case but from the front). Oh, and I guess that if there's a northbridge fan, I'd take it off... if it gets too hot, I can put on a bigger passive heatsink (or I can do that, either way).

Would there be a difference in the power efficiency of the chipsets (P45 vs. G45)? My intuition tells me that G45 would be better, but I'm not sure if there would actually be any difference if I'm not using the onboard video or sound. Again, keep in mind that I'm using a PCIe card for graphics, and note that I use a USB DAC for sound. Both of the motherboards have an ICH10 south-bridge. And speaking of which - what about power use of onboard RAID controller on something like P35 or X48 chipset vs. G45 + PCI RAID card?

Slim optical drive mounting - possible? Willing to do minor modding for this... Really don't want to use a full-size optical drive, but I think that the cases have "hidden" drive bays, so it might be hard to get around them to allow a slim optical drive to open.

Are there any other mods that come recommended for such shuttle systems? How easy is it to mod Shuttle cases/systems, in general?


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 Post subject: start with this
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:11 pm 
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I just heard about this:
http://us.shuttle.com/H7_G4500SDXi.aspx

so it looks like they have an internal water block for the cpu, but oddly they don't expand the loop to the graphics card, apparently, or use it to cool off the usually noisy as hell psu. So it's close, but probably not completely there. I used to use an old AMD shuttle box, but that thing was so relentlessly noisy, I don't really know where you'd begin. The psu would be the trickiest thing, it's usually a custom unit with a tiny noisy fan.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:59 pm 
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This appears to be one of the traditionally laid out Shuttles with the ICE heatpipe going to the back. If so, adding an extra fan may not work so well or particularly help. The only real place to add an extra fan is on the top of the case above the ICE heatpipe.

Replacing the rear fan is worthwhile though. It's also worth before you even start putting components in to strip the whole thing down and cut out the rear grill. This will get you perhaps a 5C drop. Here's how I have my old one setup:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... highlight=

What graphics card are you thinking of using? These Shuttle's have rows of holes on the case side for graphics card cooling and with a single slot passive card it works very well as it's a major air intake for the system drawing air in over the card. If you have a graphics card with a fan, cutting an intake hole could work. As an alternative their have been a number of mods done with double slot coolers like the old NV Silencers poking through a hole in the side of the case. This does require quite a bit of delicate cutting though.

I would not say that the stock PSU will be a major noise problem in one of these units. In my experience the stock CPU fan and any stock GPU fan will drown it out.

If you're thinking of putting a PCI SATA RAID card in watch that although these Shuttles have a PCI slot, there's not much height around it and only small controller would fit. You might be better off going for one of the larger P series based chassis where the expansion slots sit on the other side and the CPU cooling is done laterally. This would also give you the RAID controller onboard and you could get some better cooling from the pair of 60mm fans at the top of the back, which you could also replace. The best setup here is the rare multi-GPU ones which come with a setup of graphics heatpipes that go up to this 2x60mm fan area to give really quite good quiet graphics cooling. You could find some of these heatpipes on eBay perhaps.

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Silverstone SG03B: E8200, Asus P5E-VM HDMI, 2Gb RAM, Leadtek 9600GT+S1 rev. 2, Samsung 500Gb, Seasonic X-400, 2x Akasa 120mm, Scythe Zipang 2 fanless


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 2:47 pm 
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Sorry to break the news after you guys have already posted, but I gave up on this thread, and decided to go with a Silverstone SG05 (already arrived) + a mini-ITX mobo (backordered but should be back in stock in a week). The non-H7-chassis Shuttles are a bit bigger, and the ones with recent chipsets that have RAID are also quite expensive. Thus, there goes any advantages that they had over the Silverstone.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 2:59 pm 
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Let us know how you get on with the SG05. Looks promising for a very compact quiet system. Perhaps you can take pics and post details of the build?

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Silverstone SG03B: E8200, Asus P5E-VM HDMI, 2Gb RAM, Leadtek 9600GT+S1 rev. 2, Samsung 500Gb, Seasonic X-400, 2x Akasa 120mm, Scythe Zipang 2 fanless


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 3:15 pm 
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edh wrote:
Let us know how you get on with the SG05. Looks promising for a very compact quiet system. Perhaps you can take pics and post details of the build?


Yep, I was planning on it. I might first test it out with a mini-ITX setup that I'm selling, just to test out the case, and then switch it out for the one that I'll really be building. I might just have the first review available on the web for the case. :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 6:30 pm 
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Ice-pipe shuttles run very cool. You only have to work on the PSU which if its silentpower will alos be very quiet. From my experience the hard drives and video card cooler are the noisy components. Shuttles are good platform.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:39 am 
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As long as this thread is resurrected, I thought I'd post a short update for now... :)

I've got my MSI IM-Q35 sitting in the SG05 case. It's a good size, but all those PSU cables leave very little room for comfort. There are also a couple of questionable design decisions - or at least, easily achievable improvements. But anyway, I can't get the system to boot, so I have to figure out if it's a harware issue, PSU issue, or power button issue (the latter unfortunately not being very likely).


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