I'm looking for advice from anyone who has previously built a system around the Shuttle SX58H7 barebones kit (the core i7 based solution).
Essentially I want a small, self-contained system that I will primarily use for working on DSLR images (think Lightroom and Photoshop on large RAW images with multiple layers), plus other media-related duties (DVD-ripping etc) and some light gaming (TF2 and that kind of thing).
I'm drawn to the Shuttle solution despite the cost overheads, but I have a few questions:
1. Can the proprietary cooling solution handle a moderate overclock on a core i7 920, say to 3GHz or a little higher? Tom's review seems to indicate this wouldn't be a problem.
2. What's the best match in terms of RAM assuming I go for a triple DDR3 kit to provide 6GB total? I've been looking at the following kit on ebuyer, but should I be thinking about 1600MHz kits?: Corsair 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz XMS3 Memory CL9(9-9-9-24)
3. Although I'll be using my ATI3870 from my current build in the new system to begin with, I'm thinking of moving to a Radeon 5850 eventually - does this present any problems with the small case / lack of cooling?
4. Does the Shuttle chassis require a half-height optical drive? Looking at the pictures it seems as though it could accommodate a full size drive, and after reading the manual for the barebones kit it doesn't state half-height only, but a couple of reviews online seem to imply that this would be required.
I'll probably stick a Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB drive in the build as well. I have a few SATA drives (2x250GB, 1x500GB) in my current AMD Skt939 system but I'm thinking of turning that into a Linux/Windows Home Server machine for backup and media storage so will probably leave those drives in place.
Any advice on this kind of build would be gratefully appreciated.
1) Why would you want to overclock a PC destined for production work? Stability is much more important here than performance, and you wouldn't want crashing to occur just before you save your work, do you?
2) If you're using 32-bit Windows, you can't go any higher than 3GB anyway. 6GB is perfect for a Windows 64-bit system.
3) The 5850 should fit in your shuttle (an assumption), but there won't be any space left for proper cooling.
4) Which reviews are this? Please link to them. I would suggest a half-height drive though, to keep internal space free for cooling.
1) I probably wouldn't overclock the machine right away - as you say it's not really required for production work and stability is a higher priority. It would be useful to know there is a bit of headroom there if needed though.
2) I have a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium x64 that I got using a pre-order discount that I'm planning on using for this machine (using RC on my current machine at the moment and that doesn't expire until March), so 6GB won't be a problem.
3) Cooling is a concern - I'd need to make sure the cooler vented most heat out the back I think. It looks as though there are some vents in the side of the case though.
4) I can't even find the review in question myself now, all the specs seem to suggest fulll height is fine but as you say it might be worth going with half-height for airflow reasons.
Hey there... I just ordered up all my pieces for my SX58H7 system, in case you're interested. I already had my 24" Dell LCD, but the rest is below. I am in California, so I had to great creative on my ordering because of tax (no newegg, bummer). I got nailed with tax on the barebone, but mwave were the only ones offering an open box value at $472 (the rest are $599), so even with tax and shipping (then $10 off with Google Checkout), it was only $512.
SX58H7 Barebone (MWave)
Sapphire Radeon HD 5770 (Amazon, $169)
(Below all from Tiger Direct)
Samsung SH-S223C_BE DVDRW Drive - 22X DVD+/-R, ($29)
OCZ Gold Tri Channel 6GB PC12800 DDR3 Memory - 1600MHz, 6144MB (3 x 2048) ($184AR)
Intel Core i7 920 Processor BX80601920 ($279)
Using recently purchased WD Black edition 750GB that I picked up from Newegg last month for ~$64
Should be a fun little system, as both the processor and graphics card will OC nicely! See the most recent article here on Tom's for the 5770 OC'ing capabilities...