Introducing the SilverStone Sugo SG05

We've been looking at a few mini-ITX enclosures as of late, an interest sparked largely by the surprise success of the Bitfenix Prodigy and the general industry tend towards smaller, more powerful systems. As I've mentioned before, the fact is that this is the direction these things are heading in; unless you need something that can handle multiple video cards, you can get a fairly robust system in a smaller form factor. Ivy Bridge knocked power consumption down substantially, and the raw efficiency of NVIDIA's Kepler has allowed for a massive jump in graphics performance (reviews of the GeForce GTX 680M are impending).

Of course, while Bitfenix's Prodigy is a pretty excellent enclosure, it's also remarkably large for a Mini-ITX case. The Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced we reviewed recently brings things a bit more in line with the form factor, but its cooling performance left a lot to be desired. Meanwhile, in the background, SilverStone has been campaigning for us to take a look at one of its older cases, the Sugo SG05. They're of the opinion that the SG05 is capable of producing stellar performance while being smaller in volume than the competition. This case has been around for a little while, but was it ahead of its time?

As it turns out, SilverStone hasn't been sitting idle with the SG05. Though it was introduced more than three years ago, SilverStone has incrementally introduced updates; the most recent updates upgrade the front USB ports to 3.0 and add a 450-watt 80 Plus Bronze certified SFX form factor power supply. That's not a regular cheap power supply, either, but a quality SilverStone unit. In short, the SG05 provides very nearly everything you need to produce a modern Mini-ITX desktop.

SilverStone Sugo SG05 Advanced Specifications
Motherboard Form Factor Mini-ITX
Drive Bays External 1x Slimline optical
Internal 1x 2.5", 1x 3.5"
Cooling Front 1x 120mm intake fan
Rear -
Top -
Side -
Bottom -
Expansion Slots 2
I/O Port 2x USB 3.0, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic
Power Supply Size SFX (included)
Clearances HSF 82mm
PSU SFX form factor
GPU 10" / 255mm
Dimensions 8.7" x 6.9" x 10.9"
222mm x 176mm x 276mm
Weight 7.8 lbs. / 3.52kg
Special Features USB 3.0 connectivity via internal header
Included 450W 80 Plus Bronze SFX form factor PSU
Price $116

Keep in mind that our review unit is basically the top of the line for the SG05; there are ever so slightly less expensive models that still use USB 2.0 and/or have a lower power PSU included. Really, though, this is the one you want since SilverStone includes a USB 3.0-to-USB 2.0 adaptor for the internal header and you only save about ten bucks going with the lesser 300W power supply.

What's important to remember as well is that it's honestly very difficult to get much smaller than the SG05 while still integrating the PSU in the enclosure and allowing for any kind of optical drive support. I personally feel at this point that the slimline optical drive is barely worth the added expense (I've been using the blu-ray drive in my desktop to watch The Real Ghostbusters DVDs and that's about it), but thankfully it doesn't take a heck of a lot of space and you can always use the space to just install another 2.5" drive instead. The lack of 3.5" bays is probably going to be a bit of a buzzkill to some users, too, but that's part of the price of admission.

In and Around the SilverStone Sugo SG05
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  • doctormonroe - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    Silverstone have already released a SFF PSU that is 80 Plus Gold certified:
    http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=342
    Reply
  • Jackattak - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    By the gods that's one hot little number, and modular to boot! I looked it up on Newegg and they're selling it for $99USD right meow!

    http://www.Newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=17...
    Reply
  • fr500 - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    The 450w power supply does get noisy. It's a very interesting case, my build is a few years old now and still going strong but it's been considerably modified over the years.

    I bought the original with the 300w PSU, had an i5 760 and a GTS250 back then. When I wanted to upgrade GPU the ST450-SF wasn't out so I went for a modular ATX PSU. A corsair H50 and a GTX570HD

    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/149537/Pictures/Photos/DS...
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/149537/Pictures/Photos/DS...
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/149537/Pictures/Photos/DS...

    Still going strong, cool and quiet behind my TV (CPU idles at 27c and gets to 50 under load)
    Reply
  • fr500 - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    Had to give up the 3.5" bay for the H50 and the optical & 2.5" bay for the PSU, then I fitted 500GB laptop HDD and a 60GB SSD to the botton on the case and problem solved. Reply
  • DanNeely - Monday, August 20, 2012 - link

    Silverstone has several other variants of the Sugo case with 600W PSUs. Using one of them should kill the PSU noise since anything smaller than a dual GPU card is unlikely to put enough load on it to ramp the fans above idle. Reply
  • fr500 - Monday, August 20, 2012 - link

    Mine is not noisy :) it has an ATX PSU as you can see in the pictures Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    "The great thing about reviewing these Mini-ITX cases is that oftentimes there just isn't a whole lot to them,"

    Lol! I love hearing little reviewer-centric quips like that.

    ...so I guess this means you have time to do even MORE reviews, eh?
    Reply
  • philipma1957 - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    The coolermaster has some good points, but it needed endless mods. I pull the cheesy face plate off it and mounted an aluminum grill, It added air but the case needs custom cables to allow for proper airflow. So if you want a nice machine with the cooker master be prepared to break out a lot of tools. I am still playing with it.

    When I am done It will have an;

    i7 3770k

    a 256gb msata ssd

    a full size samsung blu ray

    a full size seasonic psu

    a geforce gtx 670

    all noctua fans .

    It will be nice when I am done but it is not worth the effort.

    My guess is this silverstone is better by far in terms of ease of assembly
    Reply
  • owned66 - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    i built one a while ago

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXOl7TKVwLM
    Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    Actually there's a *very* good reason to go with what you consider an unworthy 300W PSU: Better power efficiency at low power usage. Since it is almost impossible to cram equipment for 300W max consumption into such a case and even that is much more likely to run at <20% power utilisation rather than 80% it simply does not make any sense to have >300W PSU in a mini-ITX case. Reply

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