ARM StealthPC Foundation Kit: Very highly rated, toward the upper end of my price range. The fresh-air power supply seems nifty. I can't seem to find where to actually buy it... perhaps I have to call?
This would be my choice.
AMD and Intel seem more or less neck-in-neck in heat production, according to the Recommended chart (I don't have my heart set on Athlon 64 or P4 Prescott). Is there a certain "above this level it gets a lot hotter" optimum performance-quiet mark on one make or another? If it helps, I'll probably have Hyperthreading turned off a good portion of the time, as one of my apps demands its deactivation and I'm bound to forget to turn it back on.
If that's true then the Recommended chart needs to be revised; the A64 runs dramatically cooler than the P4
, because of higher IPC (lower clockrate, more work performed per clock) and the amazing Cool n' Quiet which automatically and transparently throttles the chip on idle. And since you have to disable hyperthreading anyway.. this is a no-brainer.
As for video, I'm looking for fanless, probably with the Zalman heatpipe. Since it seems slightly favored today, I'll probably go ATI. I've heard of a bit of flakiness re: Sapphire, which is the first brand I came across that has fanless. I've also heard that LE and SE demarcations should be avoided.
Sapphire is a fine brand. I recommend the Radeon 9600 series, they run extraordinarily cool for the performance they provide (full DX9 support and respectable framerates). Yes, you can get faster cards, but unless gaming is a priority, it's not worth the +100% (or more!) heat and power consumption penalty you'll incur.
Sapphire sells a stock fanless 9600xt:
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 14-102-342
Or, honestly, you could save $30 by picking any 9600xt and just disconnecting the fan wire from the card. Should be fine, with even modest airflow; the 9600 series runs VERY cool. Oh yeah-- and don't waste your money on 256mb. By the time 128mb is a liability, the card will be totally obsolete anyway.