Silverstone Milo ML05 Interior

Unlike the Milo ML04, the interior of the ML05 has been sprayed black as well. It is made from the same 0.8mm SECC steel, which is more than adequate for such a small case. As expected from a design of such proportions, the interior is not exactly roomy but the desktop format allows for direct access to all of the components. There is a small support bar, the use of which feels a little redundant, as it is only 3cm away from the massive multipurpose bracket. A small drive cage can be used to hold up to four 2.5" drives, which should be plenty for such a small system.

The multipurpose bracket has four functions, but sadly it can only be used for a single one of them at a time. It may be used to hold a slim optical drive, two 2.5" drives, one 3.5" drive, or a 120mm cooling fan. As there is already room for four 2.5" drives on the cage next to the PSU, the second option feels redundant for such a case. Unfortunately, the user has to select between optical disks, a 3.5" device, or extra cooling. We should also note that only slot-loading optical drives can be installed in the Milo ML05. The purchase of such a drive is optional but Silverstone sells such devices and provided us with one for this review. Not that it matters, but it is somewhat funny that "Drive by Toshiba/Samsung" is printed on the box of the optical drive whereas we found an LG drive inside.

Another limitation of the Silverstone Milo ML05 is the PSU. Due to the proportions of the case, an ATX PSU obviously won't fit, so Silverstone designed the ML05 with an SFX PSU compartment instead. This is a more versatile option than having a proprietary PSU attached to the case, but the selection of SFX PSUs is rather limited. Silverstone provided us with one of their best SFX units, the ST45SF-G, an 80Plus Gold certified PSU capable of continuously outputting 450W. Such a unit however will burn a $94.99 hole in your wallet and it's probably overkill for such a low-power system. The modular connectors also add depth to the unit and the cables will be tightly pressed against the HDD cage. Most Milo ML05 users would be far better off with a simpler PSU for half the money, such as the ST30SF. If however you are planning to fit a tiny powerhouse inside the Milo ML05, the option to go with a high-performance PSU is available.

The Mini-ITX board fits comfortably in the Milo ML05 but the cables will be a pain to manage. Even with the simple system we are using to depict the installation of components inside the case, the cables cause chaos above half the motherboard. A low profile expansion card may be used, or a single-slot full size expansion card with the use of a riser. If a full size card is used, coolers taller than 36mm will not fit beneath it -- and that's assuming that the card has no cooler or components extruding from it at all. We would strongly suggest sticking with onboard options over discrete graphics, or at most use a low profile GPU. Depending on the budget, the Milo ML05 can house anything from a low power Atom/Brazos-based up to a rather powerful Haswell/Piledriver-based setup, which ought to be more than enough for the intended use of such a system.

Silverstone Milo ML05 Overview Thermal Testing and Results
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  • Meaker10 - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    Wow F-I90HD, that brings back memories, one of the first generation of performance based uATX options. Reply
  • homer_pickett - Thursday, October 9, 2014 - link

    I agree, it does bring back memories. But I don't get how it's going to stand a chance on todays market. /Homer from http://www.consumertop.com/best-desktop-guide/ Reply
  • britjh22 - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    I think the MLO5 set up with the ASRock AM1H-ITX, Kabini Athlon 5350, a SSD and just use the DC in with a laptop power brick would be an awesome media front end for a basic FreeNas setup. That Keep the budge fairly low since you don't have to worry about SFX PSU's. Reply
  • johnny_boy - Saturday, April 19, 2014 - link

    There are much better options if you don't need the graphics power of the 5350, which you wouldn't for freenas. Reply
  • teldar - Saturday, April 19, 2014 - link

    Have it. No case. Just a bare power switch, while thing mounted on lexan on back of tv. Motherboard gets hot with the dc in. But a good little computer. Using 120gb crucial m500. Reply
  • DanNeely - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    (all switching PSUs are extremely efficient if the magnitude of the load is below 20% of their rated capacity).

    this is backwards; very low (or high) loads result in inefficient performance, although with the newest efficiency standard specifying performance levels at 10/90% the efficient operation range is being forced wider (there's not much room left to improve in the middle any more).
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    That actually was a typographic mistake on my part (efficient instead of inefficient). It has been corrected. Thank you. Reply
  • Samus - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    Ive been using an ml05 for awhile with a Pico PSU (90w) and a Brazos E350. Ive been looking into upgrading the board (and CPU) for awhile but keep putting it off hoping for more sub-20-watt desktop CPU options, although the new AMD A1 at 25watt is on the hot list right now. It seems to be the natural successor to Brazos, which to this day is still surprisingly competent. Reply
  • jlockheart - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    I like the smaller size of the Milo ML04, constraints can sometimes make you more creative. For the full PCI slot above the motherboard I wound up using 4-port USB and ran the cables back to headers on my mobo. Also made good use of the VGA knockout with a spare half height AMD 5450. Reply
  • Brainonska511 - Friday, April 18, 2014 - link

    A few years ago, I built my htpc system with an ML03b case. Looks to be the same design as the ML04, minus that weird faceplate on the ML04. It's been pretty solid. As far as airflow, I threw 2 quiet 80 mm fans on the side mounts, to help pull some air through the case. As for the noise the system produces: between the Scythe Big Shuriken heatsink (120mm slim fan), 2 80mm fans, and a PSU fan, I can't really hear it in a silent room if I'm more than 3 feet away. If you're watching something on TV, then any noise is drowned out completely. Reply

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