Go Back   nV News Forums > Hardware Forums > General Hardware

Newegg Daily Deals

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 03-29-11, 05:15 PM   #1
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

I have been considering building a new computer with a smaller form factor for a while. I want to use it to record TV shows, watch movies, and play games with good performance. The problem is that I didn't want to spend a lot of money. I initially sought out to build a Sandy Bridge rig with a 2500K, but after being offered a very nice deal by a well known member here, I decided to go with a Intel Core i7 920 and Asus Rampage II.

While the hardware is nothing new, I figured it would be good to showoff this case I found and detail the new build. Here is a list of the parts to be used:
  • Intel Core i7 920 w/ Cooler Master GeminiII S CPU HSF
  • 3x2GB Corsair XMS3 DDR3-1600
  • Asus Rampage II X58 Motherboard MSI X58M
  • eVGA GTX 560 Ti
  • Cooler Master GX 650W PSU
  • Cooler Master Elite 360 Mini-Tower Case

The 920, motherboard, and memory are on their way. I already have the PSU and video card.



Today I picked up the case and HSF from Microcenter. The cost of the case was $45 and the cost of the HSF was $40. Here are a few pictures of the case.



Here is a product description: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-195-_-Product

The case is described as a Mini-Tower, with dimensions of 17.3" x 5.8" x 14.2". The size of the case is surprisingly similar to the size of the 360 and PS3.



The inside of the case has a rather strange setup. Instead of a back mounted PSU, the PSU is mounted in the front, and an internal cable connects the PSU cable to the back of the case. The case can be oriented vertically or horizontally, easily, and it has a top 120mm fan and you can add a bottom 92mm fan (if the case is horizontal) and/or a side 92mm or 120mm fan.

I can't wait to get some hardware so I can see how everything fits in it. It should be a tight fit, but not too tight. The case supports ATX and Micro ATX motherboards and it has room for two 5.25" devices and two 3.5" devices (1 internal, 1 external). I will post some more pictures when I get the motherboard and get it in there.





However, I wanted to use a custom cooler, but my problem was that I couldn't find a cooler that fit the Micro ATX case. Many coolers nowadays are perpendicular to the CPU, but that would never fit this case, as I only have about 4.5"-5.0" to work with after the motherboard and CPU are installed. So I looked around Microcenter for a long time until I stumbled across the GeminiII S.



The HSF has a low profile so it's good for all cases. Also, it supports 3 different fan arrangements. One 120mm, two 92mm, or two 80mm fans can be used with the HSF depending on the case it's being used in. Also, the wide fans help cool down the motherboard and memory, as the fans hang over the edge of the HSF. The HSF has a polished copper base and 5 copper heat pipes as well.

The memory and CPU/motherboard should be arriving later this week. I will update the thread when they arrive.

Last edited by ViN86; 04-04-11 at 06:02 PM.
ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 05:33 PM   #2
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

I was wary about the HSF at first, but after Roadhog sent me this comparison, I am much happier with my purchase: http://www.overclockersclub.com/revi...geminiis/4.htm

ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 06:58 PM   #3
six_storm
Registered User
 
six_storm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Nashvegas
Posts: 11,575
Send a message via Skype™ to six_storm
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Nice rig. Can't wait to see the finished product.

What media center software are you going to use?
six_storm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 07:23 PM   #4
bob saget
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Vancouver, originally Russia
Posts: 23,134
Send a message via MSN to bob saget Send a message via Yahoo to bob saget
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

like it.
bob saget is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 09:37 PM   #5
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Quote:
Originally Posted by six_storm View Post
Nice rig. Can't wait to see the finished product.

What media center software are you going to use?
I don't know, any recommendations?
ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 09:44 PM   #6
Roadhog
Resident Alien
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 6,776
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Quote:
Originally Posted by ViN86 View Post
I don't know, any recommendations?
one word. XBMC
Roadhog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 10:00 PM   #7
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Ok, I will check out Boxee and XBMC. I am looking at this capture card:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16815116033

How is Windows 7 Media Center?
ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-11, 11:25 PM   #8
LydianKnight
Registered Knight
 
LydianKnight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Málaga, Spain
Posts: 977
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

With my previous PC (it had an HVR-1300 Analog+DVB-T with a hardware MPEG-2 encoder) it went quite good, although the only thing I didn't like at all was the fact WMC doesn't allow you to select the component video or auxiliary inputs of your video card.

It seems to go straight to the DVB-T input and that's about it (but, to be fully honest, it may be my partial mis-understanding of what WMC can or can't do...).

So, overall, it's a nice program (but don't skip on testing Boxee and XBMC)
LydianKnight is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 03-29-11, 11:36 PM   #9
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Quote:
Originally Posted by LydianKnight View Post
With my previous PC (it had an HVR-1300 Analog+DVB-T with a hardware MPEG-2 encoder) it went quite good, although the only thing I didn't like at all was the fact WMC doesn't allow you to select the component video or auxiliary inputs of your video card.

It seems to go straight to the DVB-T input and that's about it (but, to be fully honest, it may be my partial mis-understanding of what WMC can or can't do...).

So, overall, it's a nice program (but don't skip on testing Boxee and XBMC)
Thanks for the advice. I will definitely check them out.
ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-11, 10:17 AM   #10
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Had some problems with the Rampage II board. Returned it and picked up an MSI X58M from Micro Center (got it for $150). It's a micro ATX board and has a good feature set. I got Windows installed and up and running. I will post some pics tonight.

It's a tight squeeze in the case. The video card is a little long and hits the PSU lol. But it fit some how.
ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-11, 03:56 PM   #11
ViN86
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 15,486
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Got it together. Here are some pics. Actually looks nice next to my other components.

It's a very tight fit with the video card. It took quite a bit to get it all in there, but it looks pretty good. I am pleased with the build. I have tested out Bad Company 2 at highest settings, 1920x1080 and am quite pleased with the results. All I have to do is get a capture card and a BD drive and it's good to go.



ViN86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-11, 04:13 PM   #12
nekrosoft13
I'm Geralt
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Chicagoland, once a year in Poland
Posts: 24,366
Default Re: New Mini-Tower Gaming/HTPC Rig

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadhog View Post
one word. XBMC
yap, xbmc, nothing else is there.
nekrosoft13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:19 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2014, nV News.