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Out With ATX, In With Gigabyte's CB91 BTX

Pros And Cons

Pros

  • Distinguished appearance
  • Effective cooling concept (BTX)
  • Easy access for system build-out
  • Quiet during normal operation

Cons

  • Large dimensions
  • Poor availability in the United States

Ratings

Gigabyte CB91
WeightingCategoryResults achieved
30%Configuration85%
30%Ergonomics95%
15%Noise levels85%
5%Value85%
10%Design75%
10%Service85%
Total result87%

Conclusion

With its CB91, Gigabyte shows that the BTX form factor is a workable design even in a barebones PC. In an SFF-PC where effective ventilation can represent an engineering feat, the CB91's BTX form factor allows for quiet and efficient cooling of hardware components. We quickly got used to its oversized dimensions, and were able to make good use of its two 5.25" drive bays. The new-fangled opening mechanism, which is especially helpful when building out this SFF-PC, serves as a good model for other designers to follow. It's not only simple to use, but is also very practical.

The CB91 isn't yet available for purchase, but is expected to retail for between $250 and $300 (very much in line with its Shuttle counterparts). Availability in North America markets is expected some time in December.