Stealthy HTPC: Two Cases To Hide Your Inner-Geek

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siliconchampion

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Definitely a good article reviewing these cases. I particularly like the retro radio, but nothing tops the badass factor of my Xbox pc media pc.

(C2D E7400, 4GB DDR2-800, 7200RPM 2.5 inch 320GB Hitachi, Wireless N, Earthwatts 380 watt psu, low profile 9800GT, all with a wireless adapter for 360 controllers inside it. Looks totally stock (except from the back) and is the sickest thing for streaming movies and TV from my i7 build upstairs.
 

neiroatopelcc

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I love that wood thing! Add a tv tuner and a logitech keyboard/remote thing and it's perfect!
Suppose you'd just have to ask them which dvd drives are compatible when shopping for the internals!
 

amnotanoobie

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The nMedia is nice, but it'd be good if you already had the wooden tv rack so it'd blend in. The Lian Li's side opening ODD tray might be a deal-breaker for some, but it is still sleek.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]neiroatopelcc[/nom]I love that wood thing! Add a tv tuner and a logitech keyboard/remote thing and it's perfect! Suppose you'd just have to ask them which dvd drives are compatible when shopping for the internals![/citation]

The button spacing is a fairly universal problem, since the case's button only has a little over 1/8" travel and the space is around 1/8" to the button of most drives. You can put something else between the two to fill the space, it doesn't have to be a cabinet door bumper.
 

neiroatopelcc

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[citation][nom]Crashman[/nom]The button spacing is a fairly universal problem, since the case's button only has a little over 1/8" travel and the space is around 1/8" to the button of most drives. You can put something else between the two to fill the space, it doesn't have to be a cabinet door bumper.[/citation]
Yeah, but well. I've got my htpc running in a cylinder of what translate.google.com calls corrugated sheet metal. Looks like a metal bass tube on feet, and I don't expect to replace it. But I still love that wood chassis. The lian li doesn't look very attractive. Think the old aerocool m40 I gave my parents looks a lot better, and I don't consider lian li quality anyway. The lian li that hosts the 920 already has a broken lid that used to cover the top usb, and the power button appears to 'just be hanging there' instead of being fixed properly. Can't beat silverstone in anything really. It's merely expensive like thermaltake, but without distinguishing qualities.
 

r0x0r

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[citation][nom]Crashman[/nom]Don't forget the 5x7 car stereo speakers.[/citation]

Are you thinking of home theatre amps or car stereo amps?

I'm thinking of a home theatre amp.
 
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Forgive my ignorance but aren't those components overkill for an HTPC? What else would you be using it for beside playing movies?
 

Fendulon

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That is one sweet wooden case. A very reasonable price as well. I would actually consider getting that if it did have that damn card reader there.
 
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I agree with the radio. The black box looks like a PC to me.
If anything, it could look like a microwave, but definitely not a subwoofer!
 

Regulas

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The nMedia is cool and it can be had at newegg for $99. Makes me want to start buying parts again. A mini ATX low power wireless server comes to mind.

As far as the article goes, I quote,

"The HTPC 8000 supports full ATX and micro-ATX motherboards, with barely enough room in front to support long graphics cards (such as the GeForce GTX 285)"

But it does fit, my XFX GTX 285 barely fit into my Lian Li Mid tower case but it fit.
 

mactruck

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[citation][nom]the_stig13037[/nom]Forgive my ignorance but aren't those components overkill for an HTPC? What else would you be using it for beside playing movies?[/citation]

I love gaming on my HTPC - it is insanely fun playing L4D on a 52" HDTV. No, it can't play Crysis but that's what my main rig is for.
 

g00g13

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Tomshardware, could you please built us a similar wood casing HTPC with the option of where you can choose different size USB/Digital front panels for your self. (even better where the front panel works with Linux) Tomshardware used to do DIY projects like this before.
 
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"The HTPC 8000’s most significant achievement may be that it’s the first to boast an acceptable wife approval factor in this author’s family room."

Really? My wife would throw that thing out of the window. To each his own, but I find it hopelessly tacky. Not to generalize too much, but I think it will probably do better in the US than anywhere else.

Our Silverstone case HTPC blends in pretty well. If you squint it looks like a power amp or something.
 

g00g13

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@947816yoriqhfukdsjac, that thing doesn't look great, hence the reason why I asked, why can't Tomshardware build a better looking box with a custom front panel, that you can buy off the shell from "known companies". Perhaps even laminated wooden box. Or use cheap Pine or Meranti, or stains that perhaps make cheap pine look good. I think wood does help dampening fan noise/high pitch. IMHO
 

neiroatopelcc

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[citation][nom]the_stig13037[/nom]Forgive my ignorance but aren't those components overkill for an HTPC? What else would you be using it for beside playing movies?[/citation]
Recording HD content, while playing a blueray movie, having a Monopoly game minimized and dc++ running in the background?

As the intro said - some think of htpc as something that plays movies and music - and others think of something that pretty much makes the rest of the equipment obsolete. Combine the wood chassis with the motherboard with onboard 5.1 surround amplifier, a dvb tuner or two and a 4870/260 and you've got something you could replace everything with. Connect it to your projector or 40" monitor, and you don't need your dvd/ps3/blueray/wii/receiver/amplifier system anymore. Just imagine the cable mess that'd no longer be there?
 

niknikktm

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Sorry man,

While it's a nice review on these two particular HTPC cases, I absolutely cannot simply blow off the Blu-ray and HD aspects for ANY HTPC build and consider it legitimate. If an HTPC is incapable of recording in high definition and authoring (god forbid simply playing) Blu-ray, then it's not of much of a "Home Theatre" PC to me. This is almost 2010! Time to stop playing with the kiddies and pony up with the big boys.
 

WheelsOfConfusion

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[citation][nom]ProDigit80[/nom]I agree with the radio. The black box looks like a PC to me.If anything, it could look like a microwave, but definitely not a subwoofer![/citation]
I think the thing that gives it away is the bright blue LED. Some old-fashioned, dim red and green ones would have done a lot to disguise the modernity if that's what they were going for.
 

sirmorluk

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HTPC 8000 is the bomb. Of course my family sits around and listens to OTR and love anyhting nostalgic or ol' timey. To each their own.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]niknikktm[/nom]Sorry man,While it's a nice review on these two particular HTPC cases, I absolutely cannot simply blow off the Blu-ray and HD aspects for ANY HTPC build and consider it legitimate. If an HTPC is incapable of recording in high definition and authoring (god forbid simply playing) Blu-ray, then it's not of much of a "Home Theatre" PC to me. This is almost 2010! Time to stop playing with the kiddies and pony up with the big boys.[/citation]

You really think a BRD would have made the test more valid? A fitment and thermal test? Where a BD-RE has the same size as a DVD-RW?

Why is that?
 
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