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Looking for HTPC case I can water cool

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Last response: in Components
March 18, 2008 12:44:59 AM

It does not have to be an "HTPC" case, just HTPC friendly.

I am looking for a black case that will look good in the living room (nothing fancy) price is an issue. I would rather put my money inside the case if you know what I mean.

I am planning on a Micro ATX GA-73PVM-S2 or GA-73PVM-S2H
E2160 (read the TH article and can't wait to play a little)

I prefer water cooling - a single fan radiator should do (I've been able to tame an OC'ed 805D with a pretty small custom WC system - in a 690 with all of the room in the world)

For sanity sake I would like the case to be wire management friendly - even if I am the only one to look inside it.

This will be a Beyond TV link box, but will have to do some trans coding and capture work (and have a few cards in it).

More about : htpc case water cool

March 18, 2008 6:28:16 AM

Are you planning on playing intensive games on this thing?
If not then you don't need water cooling at all...
Go for a cpu cooler that's quiet and a video card that's air cooled the asus 6600 gt silent!
I've got a 3200+ 64 bit AMD with a 6200 evga (that I removed the fan from) 256 MB vid card. and the stock fans are quite tolerable.
And yes, the HTPC case makes it all worth it!
It looks awesome and fits the system I have....Don't cut yourself short.
Make it look as awesome as it is functional!
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March 18, 2008 7:41:38 PM

I am not looking to game with this thing, but the best features of Beyond TV (Smart Skip and Show squeeze) use 100% CPU all night long. I want to max out the performance of the E2160 (and do it quietly). The other concern is that it will run 24/7 so the cooler the better.

I will check out the Asus 6600GT silent (do you use it with high-def content?)

IH8U - the SilverStone LASCALA 10 CS-SST-LC10B looks very promissing, have you used it yourself?
March 19, 2008 2:48:44 AM

i'm sorry, I ment the 8600gt silent.......where are my
March 19, 2008 11:51:53 PM

Thanks for the card advice, I'm checking them out now. . . are you guys using any of them with HD video
March 20, 2008 12:15:25 AM

I'm using my 3850 with BLU-ray on a 42" Samsung HDTV, works great and is worth the price. Why the 3850, and not something else? It is actually silent and runs well. The only other thing I can tell you is, you want S-video HD or DVI. I use a 3850 thats very similar to that one, but not silent. Works great and never hangs, fits easily into an Antec HTPC. Enjoy!
March 20, 2008 1:39:04 AM

Thanks Blood, I'm thinking Blu-ray soon - I was going Nvidia to try the pure video drivers, now you have me re-thinking it. . .
March 20, 2008 2:38:26 AM

Just go with a 780G mobo, uses so little power their is no need to
complicated cooling.
Could turn down the fans to hallfspeed and it would be very quiet.

Just becuase it's on all the time does not really matter.

There is very little difference for computer chips helth to be on
for 6 hours at 50 deg c or 1000 hours at 50 deg c.
March 20, 2008 9:38:17 AM

Yeah my 3850 is the only ATI card that I have ever owned, and I can truly say it is a nice card. Nvidia Pure Video does not effect BLU-ray, only streaming, online videos. Also the video proccessing on a 780G might not be enough for BLU-ray.
March 20, 2008 3:28:38 PM

Actually blood THG did a recent review on the 780G and the blu-ray ran flawless even with the sempron processor!
I gotta admit that AMD did something really good for a change!
These boards are not yet available here in Winnipeg, but when they hit the shelf that's what's going into the HTPC....
March 20, 2008 4:02:32 PM

Excuse me if I'm wrong, but isn't water cooling a total waste on a HTPC?

What do you need to do extreme OCing for?
March 20, 2008 4:31:12 PM

I am sure it can manage BLU-ray. Its how well it can manage, with other programs running, that I question. I beleive he would be better off with a 3850, it can do BLU-ray with absolutely no lag or slowdown. The 780G might not be able to do that perfectly, also it can not do gaming very well at all, should he choice to use it for that.
March 21, 2008 1:01:55 AM

I am not looking at "extreme OCing", but I want to use the E2160 that the TH article raves about. I do not want to push it to its limits, rather strike a balance between performance and longevity. I need a powerful CPU to do media conversion and analysis (Smart Skip and Show Shrink with 38Gb files) and it is going to be in a media closet with limited ventilation.

I have been going through these forums and I see a pattern here . . . a lot of people using water cooling with two radiators, two pumps, 5 cooling blocks, neon, some kind of custom reservoir . . . $400 to $600 . . . and a lot of people that are put off by a cooling system that costs more than everything else in their case combined. No wonder people think it is a waste.

I am an electrical engineer . . . I want something that brings my CPU well into its operating range, keeps it there, and meets my noise and power requirements . . . anything more is waste. I can do that with a modest WC loop. I also can move most of the heat from the center of the case to an outside wall which plummets the case temps.

Blood the 3850 looks good, but the egg has a 8600GT for $60 after rebate . . . with the Gigabyte P35 mb for $90 I might be ok, what do you think? gaming is not really an issue.
March 21, 2008 8:44:40 PM

The 8600 GT is a disappointment all the way around. I had 2 8600 GTS in my media PC and while watching BLU-ray there would be studders every once in awhile, not frequent but there. Upgraded to one 3850 for the same price and everything works great. The best deal most likely would be a 9600 GT, which out performs the 3850 for less, but is not silent. This is everything you will need, you will have to survive with the noise, though it should not be too bad.
March 21, 2008 10:13:13 PM

Thanks for all your help blood, the wife's mom just pasted away and priorities have changed all of a sudden . . . this project will have to be put on pause for a while.

Thanks again