Recommendations for a sexy HTPC case!

Enclosures and acoustic damping to help quiet them.

Moderators: NeilBlanchard, Ralf Hutter, sthayashi, Devonavar

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Sat Apr 24, 2010 4:37 pm

Fayd wrote:
frenchie wrote:100mm !!!!!!
1 meter... This is HUGE !!!

Fractal design maybe ?
umm... check your understanding of the metric system.
yeah let's not get into an argument please, people make mistakes.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Sat Apr 24, 2010 4:40 pm

Thanks dude that 2nd link is sweet, although I'd use a better looking amp/receiver.
Looks like he didn't bother with 4 or so PCI/e cards, which I'll have to contend with.

I'll keep searching otherwise regular case might have to be the go...
Jay_S wrote:
NT wrote:Have you seen any threads outlining someone successfully doing something like this?
I exhausted my search-Fu and came up empty, but I remember seeing an Antec NSK2400 or 2480 with the regular silver front. The owner had an AV receiver that was silver with a black acrylic panel across the top half of the receiver's face. Like this HK AVR (Audioholics.com). The owner cut a piece of black acrylic to cover the upper half of his/her NSK2480 to match the receiver. That was not a full-face replacement, but I remember it looking really nice. It was purely cosmetic, and was really well done. I can't find the thread though.

This gallery thread is one of my favorite HTPC's at SPCR, and is a full transplant using a CD player: An HTPC with a twist.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Wed Apr 28, 2010 12:10 am

yup, so that's it so far...
was away for a long weekend, coming back to this soon.

randle81
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:37 am
Location: Australia

Post by randle81 » Thu Apr 29, 2010 2:03 am

you're making me very jealous with all these deluxe options you've posted!

I've been looking at htpc's as well and the best value option seems to be the Antec NSK2480... ~A$135

Maybe then I can find an old amp to make a more attractive fascia... knew I shouldn't have thrown that old onkyo out!

Those Origen ones looks great, but not at $600

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Fri Apr 30, 2010 12:32 am

Okay, so this is now all the OEM's I have looked at:

Ahanix
Alutek

Antec ....... (nothing really except some decent rackmounts, fusion remote max discontinued it seems)
AOpen ..... (none for ATX mobo's, and all aesthetically sterile anyway)
Apevia ..... (the X-Master 500 range -avail. in 4 colours- meets all basic requirements, but it's just hideous)
ATech Fab. (two beautiful cases, the 7000 in particular can be tweaked to fit all requirements, but it's extremely $)
Fortunetec (seems to be a OrigenAE reseller not a case OEM, have some nice rackmounts & 19" racks/cabinets)
GMC ........ (none for ATX mobo's, & no standard format PSU's)
Lian Li
Moneual
nMedia
OrigenAE
Silverstone
Thermaltake (inc. their Luxa 2 range)
Zalman

Any I've missed? Please suggest other OEM sites to peruse!
I've decided to forget about true rackmount enclosures...
I'll only look at enclosures with "rackmount-like" dimensions, but "HiFi aesthetics".
Last edited by NT on Fri May 07, 2010 11:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

Fallen Kell
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2005 7:50 pm

Post by Fallen Kell » Sat May 01, 2010 10:21 pm

Since I see that you missed it, take a look at the Antec Remote Fusion Max. You can fit 5 hard drives in there even though the specs only list 4x3.5" bays and 1x5.25", there is a second 5.25" bay area (which simply does not have an external opening because the LCD screen is there) where you can put a drive using a 5.25"->3.5" converter.

I will mention that you WILL want to have right angle SATA connectors for all the 3.5" bays, and preferably a power supply that has right angle SATA power connectors as well. If not, you are in for a tight fit on the drives.

The thing I love the most about this case is that I can fit big, slow fans in it, and even use passive graphics card (Powercolor 5750). I made a slight modification to the optional internal 120mm fan cage (which normally requires you to lose 2 of the hard drive mount points) so that it could be used while there are hard drives installed. But aside from that, it is a nice case. Oh, you will probably want to use a modular power supply to cut down on wires.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Sat May 01, 2010 10:47 pm

It's not on their website and it's not in their discontinued line either:
http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?Type=Mg==
However, judging by this review it does come very close to meeting all requirements.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Antec_Fusion_Remote_Max
Although I'd prefer that it had a card reader built-in, or at least a space for one.
I have no need for more than 4x 3.5" bays used by drives.
A spare external 3.5" bay would be handy if there's not enough internal bays or for adding a card reader.
It's overall aesthetics/design isn't that appealing, but I do like their use of large fans.
So as long as it's still purchasable, it'll be added to the list.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Fri May 07, 2010 11:17 am

This is my short-list so far; except where mentioned price to the left is *roughly* the best price in Oz, in AUD.
It's not exactly a short-list, & there may be ones for which I haven't adhered to my own criteria, so let me know if you notice!
And I won't be surprised if I've missed a few "gems" from the sites I've visited, so if you think I've missed one please tell me.
Except were mentioned, the prices include postage for items that aren't purchasable from local shops...

Not available in Oz; total cost for best retailer + postage/mfs YTBD
$N.A. $xxx http://ahanix.com/products/mce/mce_701.php (best US price hard to say, not listed on google product search, advice?)
$N.A. $249 http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... ov=n&ovid=
$N.A. $481 http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... ov=n&ovid=
*****************************************
$245 $xxx http://www.lian-li.com.tw/v2/en/product ... s_index=64
$249 $xxx http://www.lian-li.com.tw/v2/en/product ... s_index=64
$329 $xxx http://www.zalman.com/ENG/product/Produ ... sp?Idx=281 (in Oz avail in black only?)
$345 $xxx http://www.lian-li.com.tw/v2/en/product ... s_index=64
$375 $xxx http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... m&area=usa
$377 $xxx http://www.origenae.co.kr/en/htpc_x11.htm
$391 $362 http://www.moneual.eu/China/Goods/Goods ... &detail=01
$413 $xxx http://www.zalman.co.kr/ENG/product/Pro ... sp?Idx=191
$456 $xxx http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 2&area=usa
$563 $xxx http://www.origenae.co.kr/en/htpc_s16v.htm
$582 $533 http://www.moneual.com/index.php?option ... Itemid=157 basic shipping from Korea, w/decent shipping = $631AUD.
$582 $533 http://www.moneual.com/index.php?option ... Itemid=168

Many will be knocked-out for having characteristics that I don't need/like versus the others.
It's possible (but unlikely) that items from the next list are migrated to this list, it depends on your feedback! :)
______________________________________________________________________________
Meets or w/tweaks can accommodate all requirements, but looks like crap or has useless feature/s
******************************************************************************
$??? $xxx LC03V ___________________(black or silver & no reader)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... v&area=usa
$135 $xxx LC20B or ...S _____________(black or silver & no reader or display)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 0&area=usa
$135 $xxx LC13B-E & ...S-E __________(black or silver & no reader or display)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... E&area=usa
$138 $xxx GD01B-R & ...S-R _________(black or silver & no display)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 1&area=usa
$196 $xxx LC20B-M or ...S-M _________(black or silver & no reader)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 0&area=usa
$211 $xxx GD03 ___________________(black only & no reader or display)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 3&area=usa
$246 $xxx GD01B-MXR & ...S-MXR ____(black or silver)
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 1&area=usa
$274 $xxx DH-101 _________________(black only & no reader; nowhere for it unless use the sole 5.25", & only 3x int. 3.5")
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... H101&ovid=
$293 $xxx Mozart VC4001SNS ________(silver only & no reader)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... zart&ovid=
$301 $xxx Mozart IP VF3001SNS & ...BNS (black or silver but only black common? no reader)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... t+IP&ovid=
$315 $xxx Bach VB8001SNS & ...BNS __(black or silver & no reader)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_over ... C_00000188
N.A. $310 DH202 VJ80011N2Z _______(not in Oz? price inc. $80 post, meets needs cept only 3x int. 3.5" & 1x 5.25, don't like aesthetics)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... parent_cp=
$539 $xxx DH-102 _________________(same as the DH101 cept 7" touch-screen LCD)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... ov=n&ovid=
N.A. N.A. DH202 VJ80051N2Z ________(not in Oz? non-existent on froogle, same as VJ80011N2Z cept 7" touch-screen)
http://www.thermaltake.com/product_info ... H202&ovid=

After I've narrowed-down all this, I'll go out and see if there's AVR's/AMP's that can be used instead.
I'm not too keen on that approach though, unless I can see there's minimal modding involved...

Lists below this line have no chance of making the short-list.....
=============================================================
___________________________________________________________________________
Meets or w/tweaks can accommodate all requirements, but too far over $550 AUD ($505.7 USD)
***************************************************************************
$??? $xxx http://www.zalman.com/ENG/product/Produ ... sp?Idx=192 HD160XT
$715 $xxx http://www.origenae.co.kr/en/htpc_x15e.htm
$720 $xxx http://www.zalman.com/ENG/product/Produ ... sp?Idx=193 HD160XT Plus
$??? $xxx http://www.atechfabrication.com/product ... c_7000.htm
______________________________________________________________________________
Doesn't meet all requirements & can't be easily tweaked to comply, or other reason where stipulated
******************************************************************************
$N.A. $187 (no post) http://ahanix.com/products/mce/mce_601.php
$189. $N.A. http://www.zalman.co.kr/ENG/product/Pro ... sp?Idx=369
$269. $N.A. http://www.zalman.co.kr/ENG/product/Pro ... sp?Idx=370
$N.A. $N.A. http://www.silentpcreview.com/Antec_Fusion_Remote_Max
$N.A. $N.A. http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/ ... 7&area=usa
$N.A. $N.A. http://www.luxa2.com/product_specification.aspx?s=4
$N.A. $N.A. http://www.luxa2.com/product_specification.aspx?s=5 (same except 7" touch-screen)

Can't find any of these in the retail channel in Oz or overseas...
Approached them directly & they seemed cool with me buying direct from Taiwan or China.
But they're taking forever to give me cost of postage, it seems they've decided not to.
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-816.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-7620.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-7610.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-7520.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-7510.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-650.htm
YTBD http://www.alutek.com.tw/alu-767.htm

Emailed several times to ask if I can buy direct as they don't seem be in local channel.
Some of the other case OEM's have said I can do this, but nMedia won't respond.
N.A. $xxx http://www.nmediapc.com/htpc2000.htm
N.A. $xxx http://www.nmediapc.com/htpc6000.htm
These two look tacky & weren't on my primary short-list anyway.
N.A. $xxx http://www.nmediapc.com/htpc8000.htm
N.A. $xxx http://www.nmediapc.com/htpc3000.htm

Alas, supposedly they haven't even started a production run on these yet!
N.A. N.A. http://www.chieftec.com/hifi1.html
N.A. N.A. http://www.chieftec.com/hm-01.html
Last edited by NT on Sun May 16, 2010 8:01 am, edited 4 times in total.

Jay_S
*Lifetime Patron*
Posts: 713
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:50 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI

Post by Jay_S » Fri May 07, 2010 11:42 am

The nmediapc 2000 was on your April 23 list, but it's not on your most recent list. I re-scanned your requirements in the 1st post, and it seems to meet them all. Any reason it got dropped? It's very reasonably priced, and I think it looks OK.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Fri May 07, 2010 7:03 pm

Actually it's still there, but i suspect it'll be one of the ones to go eventually.
Mainly coz of it's build quality/aesthetics compared to some of the pricier models in my finalist list.

Magilla
Posts: 24
Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 9:16 am
Location: UK

Post by Magilla » Wed May 12, 2010 10:34 am

NT wrote:It's not on their website and it's not in their discontinued line either:
http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?Type=Mg==
However, judging by this review it does come very close to meeting all requirements.
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Antec_Fusion_Remote_Max
Although I'd prefer that it had a card reader built-in, or at least a space for one.
I have no need for more than 4x 3.5" bays used by drives.
A spare external 3.5" bay would be handy if there's not enough internal bays or for adding a card reader.
It's overall aesthetics/design isn't that appealing, but I do like their use of large fans.
So as long as it's still purchasable, it'll be added to the list.
I would avoid the Fusion Max case, there's a rather large thread on Hexus.net with many people complaining about faults with the LCD. Antec don't appear to be interested judging by the responses.

http://forums.hexus.net/antec-care-hexu ... e-max.html

I bought several myself, they did indeed have a faulty LCD and were returned, but the replacements were identical so the only solution was a refund. The backlight bleeding through really was quite terrible.

In the review you link, on page 3, you can see the LCD does not have a blue background as it is supposed to have, but is instead red/pink. I can't for the life of me fathom how the reviewer could have missed an LCD that's entirely the wrong colour, so I would take that review with a pinch of salt.

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Sun May 16, 2010 7:52 am

Updated OP which stipulates requirements, & also short-list post.
Please add your thoughts.....
Also lemme know if you think I've missed a make/model.

Thank-you.

randle81
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:37 am
Location: Australia

Post by randle81 » Sun May 16, 2010 5:00 pm

The one I like the best out of the ones that still meet your requirements is the Lian Li PC-C33. It has nice sleek lines and no useless LCD. Let's face it, you're not going to get all you want for the price you want unless you do something yourself. So with this one, if you want to mod it, then this is probably the simplest design to start from...

randle81
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:37 am
Location: Australia

Post by randle81 » Sun May 16, 2010 5:20 pm

The other issue is that if you keep this list running too long then your criteria will change and suddenly you'll want USB 3 / eSata on the front, a media card reader and so forth. You're probably best to just get something simple.
However, Lian Li has a good range of 5.25" Bay case mod option that would allow media connection of other devices.

I looked through all the other links of potentials and a lot of them look tacky with their big LCDs, ugly power buttons, funny shapes and so forth. Maybe you and I just have different ideas about aesthetics?

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Sun May 16, 2010 8:14 pm

randle81 wrote:Let's face it, you're not going to get all you want for the price you want unless you do something yourself. So with this one, if you want to mod it, then this is probably the simplest design to start from...
I partially agree with your logic, which is why this model ended-up on my short-list.
But I don't think it's necessarily true that; "I'm not going to get all I want for the price I want, unless I do something myself."
As there is some cases under or close to $550, that require no after-market screens/readers or other mods, to satisfy my requirements.
randle81 wrote:The other issue is that if you keep this list running too long then your criteria will change and suddenly you'll want USB 3 / eSata on the front, a media card reader and so forth. You're probably best to just get something simple.
I don't expect USB3 but USB2 is a requirement, & eSATA is preferable to FW400.
If the case happens to have FW800 (don't think I've seen any), than that's almost equally desirable as eSATA.
I looked through all the other links of potentials and a lot of them look tacky with their big LCDs, ugly power buttons, funny shapes and so forth. Maybe you and I just have different ideas about aesthetics?
Do you think some of the cases in the second list are better?
Remember this is pretty much every model out there that fits my core requirements.
I've even included many that don't fit my core requirements in two other lists.

GuyClinch
Posts: 35
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2007 5:36 am

Post by GuyClinch » Fri May 21, 2010 4:03 am

Call me crazy but after building a system this weekend around a GD04 - I kinda think that most people would be better off sticking a tower system on the floor.

I didn't find many good places to hide the wires and while in theory it fits 3 hard drives it seems kinda cramped and awkward even with 2. Also you pretty much have to take it apart to clean the filters and finally the hard drive cooling seems suspsect.

OTOH for the same price I could have bought the same case I used for my desktop the Lancool K7 and slammed like a crapload of drives in there much easier and had easy access to cleaning the filters. You can also do things like buy converters for extra 5'1/4" bays for your tower case and stuff drives in there WITH cooling..

It does look pretty cool and all..but functionality wise a tower case owns a desktop..

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Post by NT » Fri May 21, 2010 5:35 am

Oh yeah you won't get disagreement from me there...
But in this instance I prefer form/aesthetics over raw function/utility.
I'll be updating my short-list again soon...

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Re: Recommendations for a sexy HTPC case!

Post by NT » Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:54 am

FINALLY picking this up again...
I hope to narrow this down in the next week, no longer!
All help, thoughts, & advice are greatly appreciated!

I've decided to keep the discussion going here only:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthre ... st18711024

Not a fan of the forum software used on this forum unfortunately :(
The software used at AVSforum is way more versatile/flexible.

Please help me get this finished "once and for all"!

Cheers :D

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Re: Recommendations for a sexy HTPC case!

Post by NT » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:18 am

folks? thank-you! :D

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Re: Recommendations for a sexy HTPC case!

Post by NT » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:49 am

*bump* thank-you :)

NT
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:01 am

Re: Recommendations for a sexy HTPC case!

Post by NT » Thu Jan 27, 2011 9:41 am

Folks :(
The community here's awesome so if you could come join me at:

(1) AVS
(2) http://www.overclock.net/computer-cases ... st12088086
OR
(3) http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/sho ... ost4714143

I'd be ever so grateful!?!

Signing-off for good, will miss ya'll! ...sniffle... :( :D

Post Reply