Silverstone was clearly monitoring the forums with regards to the C2750D4I in order to come out with a case designed amound the concept. Our Silverstone contact also became aware that we had the motherboard in for testing and volunteered its DS380 for a quick overview. I installed the motherboard in to the case along with my rag-tag collection of storage drives (four 3TB Seagate Barracuda 7200.14, one 2TB Western Digital Green and one 1.5 TB Seagate Barracuda 7200.11) which were previously spread out across several systems.

The case has a top mounted power-supply section (we used the Silverstone 300W SFF PSU) and places the C2750D4I upside down, with space for an 11” dual slot GPU. For PSUs that have a top/bottom mounted fan, Silverstone’s design means that the airflow for it is out of the case.

The rear of the case has a single 120mm fan installed, and the side of the case (for blowing onto the drives) uses two 120mm fans – all three were included in our retail sample. The fans use a dimpled design to reduce fan noise.

The drive area uses a backplane, and SATA cables from the motherboard attach to this.  Users can install SAS drives using both SATA ports.

The case is designed for hot-swap systems, and as such the front eight bays allow the drives to be removed.

The front of the case has two USB ports, with the connector inside capable of being placed in a USB 3.0 header. This is where the case differs in being ideal for the C2750, as there are no USB 3.0 headers on board.  Had Silverstone offered this connector as a USB 3.0/USB 2.0 hybrid, this would have been more ideal.  There are two audio jacks as well should a user decide to place a different mini-ITX motherboard in the case and can take advantage of eight drive bays via an expansion card.

The front of the case is also lockable, although the key design is not a unique one. It does stop little ones pulling a drive out however.

The case is not a tool-less design, but a standard screwdriver is all I needed to put the system together. Because the C2750D4I has a small heatsink, cable management was easy enough, although the placement of the 24-pin ATX power connector meant that the cable had to go all the way across the motherboard.  At the top we also have the 4 bays for 2.5” drives:

Silverstone suggested the 300W PSU that we used for the build, but if a PCIe device was installed we would have had to have used a 24-pin extension cable.  Similarly, the SATA cables suggested had a small issue on the bottom SATA port:

Using my own ears (unfortunately I am not equipped to measure audio performance), the three fans installed, when active, were audible enough to disturb quiet scenes in a movie and you might not want it nearby overnight, but certainly silent compared to my normal PC or the busy road I live next to. Temperature readings from the CPU gave 40ºC at idle and 53ºC at load. Total power draw, at the wall with my drives installed using the 300W PSU on a 240V line was 52 W at idle.

Ganesh also has this motherboard in to test and will be examining the storage performance in due course.

Silverstone DS380
Price Link
Model Name SST-DS380B
Material Aluminium door, SECC body
Motherboard Size Mini-ITX, DTX
Drive Bays 8 x 3.5"/2.5" Hot Swappable
4 x 2.5"
Cooling 1 x Rear 120mm 1200 RPM 22 dBA
2 x Side 120mm 1200 RPM 22 dBA
Expansion Slots 2
Front IO 2 x USB 3.0
1 x Headphone
1 x Microphone
PSU SFX
Expansion Card 11" x 4.38"
CPU Cooler 57 mm
Dimensions 211 mm x 285 mm x 360 mm
21.6 liters
Warranty Period 1 Year
Product Page Link

 

ASRock C2750D4I Overview, Visual Inspection, Board Features ASRock C2750D4I BIOS and Software
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  • A5 - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    For HTPC, I'd think you would probably want to get a small GPU for decode help anyway, so that would be where your audio comes from as well. Reply
  • bernstein - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    yeah it's a shame this doesn't come with a hdmi connector... then i'd be sold. even though i wouldn't use any of the sata plugs and just hook a sas controller+expander up to it...
    hdmi + ecc + pcie x8 capability cpu+mobo for $400 would be a steal
    Reply
  • slayernine - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    QNAP's Intel Atom models have HDMI. Reply
  • bernstein - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    yeah if only they had fanless 10+ bay models for less than $1000. Reply
  • bernstein - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    oh and one that runs zfs Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - link

    At $400 it's priced out of the core HTPC market; it's clearly intended as an entry level large storage server. As pointed out below, the spaghetti explosion from wiring a dozen drives with individual cables makes it unsuitable for most enterprise use (or prosumers who know better). Reply
  • Samus - Wednesday, April 30, 2014 - link

    For $400 you could put together a better HTPC/NAS combo solution with an AMD AM1 ITX system and an Areca SAS RAID card in a PCIe slot. You'd get a superior onboard GPU with HDMI, native USB 3.0, and a better RAID card, not some Marvell crap.

    Athlon 5350 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    ASUS AM1 ITX http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    Areca PCIe 8-port SAS http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    This motherboard is interesting and ASRock is a solid consumer OEM, but it's a little premature of them to be getting into rack space.
    Reply
  • UpSpin - Wednesday, April 30, 2014 - link

    You don't have to buy the overpriced octa core board, but could buy the identical quad core version ASRock C2550D4I for $280.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    Your mainboard doesn't support ECC RAM and your SAS Controller only supports 8 SATA drives without further expanders. Together with the two SATA connectors on the mainboard you got only 10.

    The quad core has an even lower TDP of 14W vs. 20W of the octa version. The C2750 has a faster CPU compared to your Athlon 5350.

    The only disadvantage is the poor IGP. Considering that this is more a storage/server board, less a HTPC (who wants 12 noisy hard drives in the living room?) and the unbeatable price, it's a very interesting porduct in my opinion.
    Reply
  • Samus - Friday, May 02, 2014 - link

    Well, UpSpin, that would be why I said 'htpc/nas'

    If you purely want a NAS, there are probably better solutions than what I outlined, but for a hybrid (and who is to say the NAS wont be SSD's or 2.5" 2TB drives that are dead silent) this board, like Ian pointed out, is kind of a joke for an HTPC solution. It is VERY market specific, and virtually ALL AT readers aren't part of that market. This board is grossly overpriced, especially for something with ASRocks name on it. Even cold-storage servers should have USB 3.0 or eSATA. and quality products don't use some buggy $3.00 Marvell chipset that wipes arrays at random.
    Reply
  • mars2k - Saturday, May 31, 2014 - link

    I'm with you Up, how did this get sidetrac'd into HTPC, I'm looking for an alternative to some of the stock Qnap and Synology geer for use in my home. Want NAS box with lots of tru put. Not clear on why Ian says no NAS. Whats up with configuring as a NAS? Any other suggestions Reply

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