Big things can sometimes come in small packages, as this jam-packed miniature PC case from SilverStone attests.
Though mini-ITX has often been seen as purely the domain of the HTPC or office slowpoke, the advent of some high(er) end mini-ITX boards from GIGABYTE, Zotac and ASUS has seen a resurgence of this miniature platform for gamers and performance enthusiasts.
High-end case companies haven’t seen that boat floating on by, and have been steadily pushing more high-end designs in the mini-ITX space. This particular case by SilverStone, the SUGO SG07, was unveiled at last year’s CES, but didn’t hit the shelves until the middle of the year. Now with the boards to put in it, we can build a serious gaming PC, not on the cheap, but definitely pint size.
The SG07 is one of those rare cases where you can actually shoe-horn some high-end cards into the chassis. With a clearance length of 12.2in, AMD's Radeon HD 5970 card can just squeeze in, while newer NVIDIA models can fit in with the removal of a fan strut support from the case. Of course, please check the size of your graphics cards against the case specs before putting down your cash, as different coolers might not fit.
Performance is in mind with this design, with space for two SSDs and one 3.5in hard disk drive. The optical drive needs to be the slim type, which can be a pain, but it saves space for more important things, like graphics cards. There’s also an important factor with small cases, and that’s the power. Often you’re hampered with a cut down PSU, but the SG07 includes a full ATX PSU at 600W.
That’s plenty for a single high-end graphics card and anything else you could shoehorn into the cases. The cooler support is a shorter list, with SilverStone’s own NT06-E (at $75) topping it. Stock Intel coolers fit just fine though, and most won’t need anything fancier than that.
Not much in the way of tool-less design is evident, but considering the limited space inside this chassis, you don’t want to be poking around in there too often. What it does offer is the potential to build a great little gaming machine without skimping on the components, and one that doesn’t need a mini forklift to move it around.Available from SilverStone, retailing for $249
.APC rating: 8/10 (Highly Recommended)