Description

Wanted to build an itx console-like machine so I did plenty of reading on the currently available cases. Narrowed the case list down to the node 202, ftz01, and the ml08b. I ruled out the node 202 over heat and noise concerns and ruled out the ftz01 over riser card concerns and aesthetics.

In summary, with no case fans, part selection is crucial. The gpu idles in the low 40s and at load hits the high 80s :D... Will have to sort that out. Unfortunately with the case in horizontal orientation, the gpu compartment has very low clearance with the ground where the main vent is found. Heat exhaust is lacking. The case itself becomes very warm to the touch around the gpu compartment.

This budget build basically recycled all my old components into a nice new package. The motherboard had no usb3 headers so I needed a converter to usb2 which can be found on Amazon for $5. If I were actually selecting components for this build I would be very careful with gpu selection. I like this case enough that I'm currently looking for a better gpu fit. As is the build works but gpu runs a little too hot for comfort and as a result the build is too noisy to be the ideal htpc/console replacement.

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

The shuriken fit perfectly in the ml08b. The i5 idles in the high 30s and? at load hits the low 50s. It would get 5 stars if the install wasn't so tricky. Made me wish for two more hands while I was trying to blindly attach the heatsink from the underside of the board while not dropping or crushing anything.

Video Card

Great value if buying used. Poor mix with the ml08b case. This card needs case fans and/or excellent vent locations to run cool and quietly.

Case

I really enjoyed this case. As others have described, it doesn't feel like a typical itx cramped build. The layout offers plenty of room to comfortably build in and as other critics confirmed, the riser card assembly felt durable and well thought out. I wish the case looked as good as the node, but from what I've read the build quality on the ml08b is better. The case has no fans so choose your parts wisely.

The front panel is plastic but looks good enough and the led is pleasantly subdued and can be covered by the sliding plastic plate if the USB ports are unused. I have to agree with another reviewer that the power button was a misstep. It's a hinged design that makes the button unnecessarily stiff and unresponsive. It usually takes three tries to turn the machine on as the button has to be hit at just the right angle and with enough force to get it to engage with the switch behind it.

Comments

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice use of old parts

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! My next project is putting an old core2duo build into the sg13b :D

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

I like what you are going for here, it's a great start. First thing to help improve your temps in that case is to flip the fan on your CPU to pull the heat from you CPU and send it out of the case. Secondly you have got to get rid of that open air GPU it's just pumping heat into that case. You definitely need a blower style gpu in a case like that it basically allows your GPU to keep its self cool and dumps that heat out the rear and it never enters the case.

I would recommend if you get a new gpu to get https://pcpartpicker.com/product/Hz648d/sapphire-radeon-rx-470-4gb-video-card-11256-00 This would be an upgrade and would take care of your heating issues. You could also put in a 1050 ti or 1060 3gb they don't produce much heat either and you can get the 1050ti for around $120 at times.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah I was thinking the same thing about the gpu situation. Funny thing is the silverstone manual goes as far as recommending open air gpus for this case. I may settle on a 1050 ti, but part of the fun for me is building as cheaply as possible so I'm waiting for a decently priced used model to show up somewhere. Hopefully I don't fry the 7870 in the meantime :D

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Yea 1050ti doesn't produce alot of heat so it should be fine. I think at the lower cost range that AMD has the advantage for the cheaper free sync monitors but yea the 1050ti is a decent budget GPU can't go wrong with it. I think I've seen them below $120 a few times when they go on sale for a new one. I like the case it fits in perfectly with any media center.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm loving the Steam Controller. Awesome cheap HTPC solution to use with a console. Nice work.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah the steam controller took some getting used to... I still miss the dual joystick setup, but the gyrometer function almost makes up for it.