Shuttle XPC Prima P2 4800X System Review


The Shuttle SX48P2 system has proven that it is a very fast system. It is not without flaws, but Shuttle definitely offered an extremely high-end machine that is not limited performance-wise by being a small form-factor (SFF) PC. 

 The Good

  • Exceptionally fast system
  • Very good cable management
  • High-quality construction
  • Solid-state capacitors throughout
  • Able to use large video cards

The Bad

  • Overheating under heavy gaming/overclocking loads
  • Loud system fans under heavy load
  • Loud HDD access during activity
  • Front-access door could be more solid
  • No PCI slot
  • Fingerprint reader accuracy problems

This system even worked well when things did not go as expected. If an overclocking setting was too aggressive, it was easy to reset the BIOS by pressing the button on the back of the system. Shuttle provided the high-end hardware with a super fast-CPU and GPU and a quality motherboard that met most expectations. This was clearly a system that did not sacrifice performance for size.

However, the memory and motherboard had drawbacks as it was difficult to achieve higher FSB numbers when overclocking. Higher FSB speeds do not always translate into better performance but it was surprising that there were not more FSB overclocking possibilities. The system could also use some noise dampening with silicon or rubber grommets for the HDD and noise-absorbing material inside the cover to muffle HDD activity. The system is not cheap by any means but Shuttle does offer warranty coverage for overclocking. Indeed, the warranty is impressive, but it should be, considering the cost of the system. 

The SX48P2 fits a very niche market for a SFF system that can run the fastest GPUs and CPUs, but otherwise it brings little value compared to the X38- or P35-based systems. For the price, you'd be better served by our immensely more powerful System Builder Marathon: $5,000 configuration.

  • 1raflo
    This is an overpriced rig, thats for sure.
  • StupidRabbit
    It's an oldie, but a goody. We take apart a Shuttle XPC Prima P2 4800X, based on Intel's X48 chipset, and test this fully-built system's mettle against XPCs that came before. Our conclusion? You could do better for less if you built your own.

    lol i didnt even have to read the article since you put the conclusion right in the description on the main page.. but i guess it couldnt have ended any other way. overpriced.
  • BillLake
    StupidRabbitlol i didnt even have to read the article since you put the conclusion right in the description on the main page.. but i guess it couldnt have ended any other way. overpriced.

    Well I don't see that in the article anywhere. It would seem that you might be quoting something else but the concussion is true. For those looking for a SFF it is overpriced for what it provides. You can say the same about any customer builder, Falcon Northwest, Alienware and so forth. They all sell their products for a huge premium but they do give you warranties on your "super fast and overclocked system". For me, I really like the SFF so I buy the barebones version of Shuttles products and am very happy with them.
  • StupidRabbit
    well at one point i myself was thinking of buying a thermaltake lanbox. but since i dont go to any lan parties and have no need to carry my rig around, i just could not justify a small form factor box over a mid-sized one. as you said it really is a very niche market, and i guess i am just not one of the consumers that is targeted.
    nontheless, it is one cool looking thing and has more performance than most gamers need, and you are a lucky guy to have their products.

    but until i transform into a really hardcore gamer, and have a couple grand laying (lying?) around im just gonna stick with my trusty intel e6420 overclocked by 50% and a thermaltake big-typ vx-10.. something that would have a hard time fitting in there
  • StupidRabbit
    *big-typ 120 vx.. correction
  • BillLake
    Yeah you might be able to get some other heat sink in there but it would be hard as they really designed it for this one. Maybe remove the side fan and get one that blows out that same side?

    The reason I like the Shuttle boxes is that they take up little room and you generally do not give up much. Now that said they do lack expandability but of course I can put three in the space of a full tower case. Look at the barebones units, they are very affordable but then again if something fails you have to get their board to fix it and that is not cheap.
  • cletus_slackjawd
    I have a shuttle XPC with an athlon64 3000+ skt 754, 1gig ram, x800pro, 1gb DDR-400 dual channel, sony DVD Burner and 300gb maxtor IDE PATA.
    It's based on the Nforce2 so it has good audio by Nvidia, firewire, great access up front w/ 2ea USB, Mini 1394 in front, normal in back, speaker, mic, headphone jacks up front, memory card readers up front, mirror finish up front, quiet, reliable as hell. It's actually now my wife's rig as I've built 2 new computer since handing it down, but it's pretty awesome. I will repurpose it as a media PC/Console Emulator when the time comes she wants a new one. In conclusion, a very positive experience from a Shuttle product.
  • 1potato
    Page 3 - "RAID supports stripping for improved data security". Made me chuckle :). I think you mean striping, and actually I think you really mean mirroring in that context.
  • gaiden2k7
    you guys really need someone who knows his/her way w/ the camera.. blurry pictures = dizzy viewers.
  • BillLake
    Thanks for catching the miss use of the word, spell check can save you from misspelling but not miss use. The system could do Striping, mirroring or striping with parity if you put three disks in. It support three disk by putting one below the optical drive. Shuttle does not sell it with 3 drives but I have done it. Well thanks again for catching that.