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  • rafaelaustin - Friday, October 29, 2004 - link

    Heat and noise are the enemies of an HTPC. The temperatures displayed in this test seem exceptionally low for what I've seen reported by others, usually around 55c. Try this with an Intel CPU or a "slimline" case and see what happens. The 520W Powerstream is overkill. Also, where is the TV tuner? It needs a Hauppauge PVR-250 to make this a real HTPC. Reply
  • rafaelaustin - Friday, October 29, 2004 - link

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  • geogecko - Wednesday, October 20, 2004 - link

    When can we expect to see a more comprehensive review of HTPC cases?

    Some interesting units out there on the net that would be good choices for review, IMO:

    http://www.atechfabrication.com/
    http://www.ahanix.com/ (other newer options)
    http://www.silverstonetek.com/

    And especially the new HT-400 from:
    http://www.kanam.co.kr/
    Reply
  • Bochista - Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - link

    My recent purchase of an HDTV puts me in a position where an HTPC would be useful, but I don't think some of the things I intend to do are considered in this review. Some things were hit on however, and I hope to see more cases with these features.

    1. I need LOTS of storage. Archives of my HD Tivo will take up quite a bit of room.
    2. I want to play games on my 62 inch TV, so I need thermals for serious video cards as well.
    3. The IR reciever for remote is nice.
    4. The ability to have an LED panel acknowledge commands from the remote, display track/time of a movie etc. Also, the ability to dim during movie watching so as to be less of a distraction.
    5. Silent Cooling.
    Reply
  • pshrink - Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - link

    "Another feature that Ahanix has managed to implement, and others should follow suit, is the IrDA transceiver"

    I can't see anything like a IrDA transceiver in the pictures, and I can't find any info on Ahanix's web site with regard to built-in IrDA capability. Someone please clarify.
    Reply
  • tagaste - Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - link

    Amen. Why make it seem like the temperatures are a problem when they aren't? They aren't even close. Perhaps the review has to appear 'balanced' but surely perfectly normal operating temperatures shouldn't be given anything like the same weight as ease of access, noise levels, and aesthetic considerations. When normally-clocked HTPCs actually start failing because of heat from poor ventilation or Johnny burns his hand on the case, then it's time to talk about "thermal issues." Reply
  • iwilson - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    The thermal testing is nonsense. An HTPC places noise control a lot higher in importance than thermal load. The temps quoted are nowhere near the level of causing a problem with any of the components. My HTPC has run for several years with less fans than in the article with absolutely no problems. As long as the PC is stable I couldn't care less if the temperature was 500 degrees inside.

    Case I use is here btw http://www.kanam.co.kr/html/htpc.htm
    Reply
  • Bookie - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    I'm glad you guys are spending more time with the htpc market. I'd like to see a review of silverstone's htpc case. I'm getting ready to drop a lot of money on a new entertainment system (plasma, htpc, and the works), and just want to make the right decision. I'm very interested in the lc02 (black: http://www.silverstonetek.com/products-lc02.htm) with a matx setup, but all the reviews I've read try to fit a full sized mb with all the xtras (unecessary if you ask me). I think that something like this with a mobile processor (mobile athlon 35watt probably) would be the best setup. Reply
  • CrabbyGuy - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    I think that AnandTech's thermal tests very much need expansion for HTPC cases. Very few people will build a PC in a case like this and then leave it freestanding. Rather, HTPCs will be stacked on (or even under) other home theater components and are likely to be installed in cabinets closed at the rear without fans in many living rooms. Testing the cases' thermals in these situations would be very helpful to many of us. Also, recommendations such as, "Put a fan pulling at least 25CFM behind the right-hand side of the case when installing in a closed cabinet and do not operate an HTPC installed in this case without its being open at the front," would seem especially useful. The alternative is either trial and error or component failure for many users. Reply
  • CrabbyGuy - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

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  • jeffyjones - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    I have the D5 case, and I love how it looks. The display is kind of useless, and I hate the cheap punch-out slot covers, but it looks fabulous from the front. Reply
  • PuravSanghani - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    #9: This article was actually meant to be an introduction to the HTPC case genre, as the title states, and not really a full blown review. We chose the D.Vine 4 because, well, we needed to start somewhere and rest assured, we will have newer HTPC cases to review in the future! Reply
  • pmark - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    Why did you choose to review this one when it seems that Ahanix has newer verisons of the case out? Reply
  • maxdido - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    perhaps a stupid question but i'm new to htpc.
    how do you control this thing. is there a remote?
    or do you have to buy one?
    Reply
  • tis66 - Monday, October 11, 2004 - link

    Just a suggestion:

    it'd be nice 2 include some pictures to see the actual cabling, speakers setup, and how the HTPC fit in with other AV equipments in a living room, just to give a clearer view of its usefulness.
    Reply
  • zagaroth - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    I still think the way to go for a really nice look is to get something along the lines of http://www.mini-itx.com/store/default.asp?c=3 for a nice slimline case and then use MythTV. (i like the 'Travla C137 Mini-ITX Case - Black' It fits right in with my stuff.) Having a quite (or in some case's fanless) case with NO harddrive and a quite dvd drive beside the TV. Have it boot over the network from a grunty machine with 2-4 TV tuner cards in it in the basement where it can be as loud as you want makes for a nice setup. The only cables that end up going into it is a network cable a power cable and then the svideo-out and coax-digital audio out. I've found my EPIA-M10000 can be made passavely cooled and is gruntly enough to do want i want. Though if you were to buy one now you can get one of the MII or something which provide alot more power... Reply
  • PuravSanghani - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    ksherman: We didn't mean to sound like we were knocking it or anything. It is a well constructed case and this article was basically a starting point in our expansion towards a wider range of cases. As we look at more HTPC cases we will begin to see trends in results much like those in mid tower cases. But comparing cooling to mid tower cases should not be an issue as almost all of the medium sized mid tower cases match the size of Ahanix's HTPC chassis.

    TO summarize what we learned in HTPC cases there is a trade off between thermal and sound results; a cooler running system with larger or more fans, or a quieter system with the smaller, less powerful fans.
    Reply
  • ksherman - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    I think it rocks! Though I dont see why it was nocked on because it was about 5-6 degrees hotter than a good mid-tower case... It is really not that big of a difference, and at leasts its quiet. Reply
  • Koing - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    Ditto with Octunar99.

    When you spend upwards of £250 on a dam hifi stand you don't mind spending £200 on a pc case for your hifi rack.

    If you have invested quite a bit of money in to your kit you don't mind spending money on this.

    It looks nice.

    Koing
    Reply
  • Octunar99 - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    I think the point is that no self respecting audiophile would have a regular PC in his/her audio rack or next to his/her TV/Home Theater.

    This really give you the ability to integrate a PC in your audio rack and have it look like it supposed to be there.

    Two thumbs up! I would like to a slim version however. My next audio rack will feature slim components to balance with my Plasma.
    Reply
  • Zim - Sunday, October 10, 2004 - link

    You don't need to spend $300 on a HTPC case. Just get yourself a nice desktop or mini-tower AT case for $100 or less. Personally I built my HTPC for about $400 using spare bits and pieces and some kit from NewEgg. Reply

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