mini HTPC build (Habey EMC-800B, i3-2100T, SSD, etc.) - KEEPING IT SIMPLE - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 364 Old 07-02-2011, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FantaXP7 View Post

Intel G620 is like the i3 2100, not underclocked like the 2100t or my G620t.

Both t models come with the low profile cpu fan.

Also temperature readings, those aren't really bad. I put some aftermarket thermal grease on my heat sink and I average around 54-61. Perfectly acceptable, and I do not have a side fan installed which I am sure might help. I certainly wanted something close to 40 and below, but given the tiny enclosure it wasn't crazy seeing the numbers being reported.

As for the heat of the case, that too could be considered normal as the heat is dissipating to the metal of the case. I could be making this up, but I think it is a good thing. I'd imagine that with a plastic case that the heat would sit there and you could have crazy high temps.

My system by the way is:

Intel G620t
Habey 600
Asus P8H61-I

How has viewing HD video and sound been with the G620T? I was just a little concerned about choppiness, especially if you skip around, so I'm on the fence with the 620 and the 620T. I assume with the small case you're storing your media externally, is it a network storage solution or external via USB/firewire?
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post #92 of 364 Old 07-02-2011, 03:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billium View Post

How has viewing HD video and sound been with the G620T? I was just a little concerned about choppiness, especially if you skip around, so I'm on the fence with the 620 and the 620T. I assume with the small case you're storing your media externally, is it a network storage solution or external via USB/firewire?

Overall I am happy with the G620T.


I have watched a bunch of 720p and 1080p mkvs, and I think I have seen one scene where there was choppiness...I also just recently got blu ray working with mediabrowser, and that was choppy. But this is for my bedroom so I can easily live with sticking to mkvs and live tv play back, which has been very good.

Browsing around mediabrowser has felt slow...but I am not 100% sure this is due to the cpu as I can produce similar results in another htpc that has a core i3. I believe it is a mediabrowser thing.

To answer your question on media, I have a home server. In this day and age having a server with some sort of raid protection is critical. I have a raid 6 configuration and I am very happy with it.

Skipping around seems fine, although since my media is on a server, if you skip a bunch ahead in a movie it may take a second or two to catch up.

Sound is very good too. I can get dts-ma and dolby hd as advertised.

EDIT: I realized that I hadn't played anything real stressful yet so I tried out some planet earth 1080p's. Played some test scenes and saw some skipping. Also noticed that the cpu usage was way too high. So I found out that my settings for DXVA video were incorrect. Now no choppiness at all now, with mkv. Blu ray still choppy, I will try to play around with that. I have maybe 2 blu ray movies to my say 500 mkvs, so I haven't played around with it much on this new build.
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post #93 of 364 Old 07-02-2011, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swazi1 View Post

Yeah I realize the metal case is a good thing - What I mean is that the hot air is trapped inside the case and does not vent out well on it's own.

I hear ya. I think that it's all attributed to it's tiny size and no case fan.

I am curious myself now and think I might play around with what a fan might do...
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post #94 of 364 Old 07-02-2011, 04:41 PM
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See my earlier posts in this thread to see my thoughts about helping to lower temps with the Habey chassis.

WANTED: 16:10 120Hz monitors for triple surround gaming/Google Earth browsing.

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post #95 of 364 Old 07-03-2011, 06:05 AM - Thread Starter
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First of all the build quality is not good. The case has a few scuffs. Not enough to send it back as a sharpie can probably make it less noticable. Also the drive tray is bent and of poor quality. Hopefully the PSU is better quality...

I wonder if perhaps you got an open box unit? Didn't have any scuffs on mine and the drive bracket was not bent. It's definitely more "industrial" than consumer, but the 4 units I've used so far have been fine.


Quote:


Second - for all those wondering and on the fence - the stock cooler with the G620 does not fit. I still need to install the DVD and will report back. But basically the bottom portion of the drive tray touches the top of the heatsink. Thus it will not be possible to install a HDD. Also without the HDD I still need to slide the bottom portion of the tray all the way forward (it slides to get the DVD in the correct position) to make it sit close enough to be able to close the lid.

Yeah, although I've never tried a non-T cooler in this case I've tried to stress that as much as possible in this thread. There is not much clearance at all even with a stock "T" cooler installed. If you want to go with a non-T processor I think you need to go aftermarket for a very low profile cooler.


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Third - HEAT!! - without drive installed I can only boot into BIOS. Closing the lid, idling in BIOS undervolted to .975 the CPU temp swiftly leveled out at 55c, with mobo in the high 40s. The case is hot to the touch and obviously does not dissipate heat well. Removing the lid drops the CPU down to ~40. As a quick test I put the case on its side so that air could enter from one side vent at the bottom and go out the top at the other vent. This dropped the temp from 55 to ~50.

To be honest with you I see higher temps in my Intel motherboard BIOS than I see during typical Windows use or MKV playback. I suspect some of the throttling features are not active when sitting in the BIOS. However, I do think the temps are fine. I realize that many people want things as cool as possible, and I agree, but this is not the case for you if that is priority #1. It's tiny and not much airflow or ventilation. That being said if size is #1 priority and you like the aesthetics of this case, these temps are well within acceptable levels. For HTPC use I see no issue. However, I probably wouldn't throw one in my kitchen cabinet for high-end gaming use where I might often be running at a high CPU load.

Also, I haven't seen any of my cases get "hot" to the touch. Warm, yes, especially the one in my kitchen cabinet but certainly not hot.
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post #96 of 364 Old 07-03-2011, 06:10 AM - Thread Starter
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EDIT: I realized that I hadn't played anything real stressful yet so I tried out some planet earth 1080p's. Played some test scenes and saw some skipping. Also noticed that the cpu usage was way too high. So I found out that my settings for DXVA video were incorrect. Now no choppiness at all now, with mkv. Blu ray still choppy, I will try to play around with that. I have maybe 2 blu ray movies to my say 500 mkvs, so I haven't played around with it much on this new build.

I've been doing straight rips of my BluRays to full resolution 1080p files and haven't noticed any performance issues at all. All files play through a gigabit network off a 2K8 server hardware RAID6 volume. Everything is very snappy including Media Center and Media Browser, but with perhaps only about 100 or so movies ripped. Unless it's a movie we're going to watch again and again (like a kids movie) I tend to delete them from my server after a while.

The only skip or stutter I see is perhaps after I've skipped around in the movie a lot. There may be a bit of stutter for a couple of seconds, but I don't feel like that is caused by the CPU.

All my systems do have 8GB of RAM and SSDs installed with an i3-2100T.
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post #97 of 364 Old 07-03-2011, 07:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Boulanger View Post

I've been doing straight rips of my BluRays to full resolution 1080p files and haven't noticed any performance issues at all. All files play through a gigabit network off a 2K8 server hardware RAID6 volume. Everything is very snappy including Media Center and Media Browser, but with perhaps only about 100 or so movies ripped. Unless it's a movie we're going to watch again and again (like a kids movie) I tend to delete them from my server after a while.

The only skip or stutter I see is perhaps after I've skipped around in the movie a lot. There may be a bit of stutter for a couple of seconds, but I don't feel like that is caused by the CPU.

All my systems do have 8GB of RAM and SSDs installed with an i3-2100T.

Yea my main htpc has an ssd and 8gb of ram, doesn't show any signs of slowing down in mediabrowser. This is something I have taken into consideration. I definitely plan on putting an ssd into this habey build. The browsing slow downs seem to happen after watching one video and going onto the next, there is a 2 second delay, then everything is fine. Could be mediabrowser but easily could be something else.

I've also noticed the same while fastforwarding, it seems like a buffering thing.
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post #98 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 07:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Boulanger View Post

The H67 is overkill, but Intel's H61 Mini-ITX board does not have HDMI so I went with the H67.

Does anyone know if you use a DVI to HDMI adapter on the H61 board if you can get audio via HDMI?
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post #99 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crbaldwin View Post


Does anyone know if you use a DVI to HDMI adapter on the H61 board if you can get audio via HDMI?

DVI doesn't pass audio so no, you won't get it by using an adapter.
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post #100 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badgerpilot View Post

DVI doesn't pass audio so no, you won't get it by using an adapter.

This is not entirely true, I have read that some video cards with a hdmi-dvi adapter do.

I think some ati cards had the ability, if you google it you will see some people have had success...It's really weird though, I never thought it was possible.
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post #101 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FantaXP7 View Post

This is not entirely true, I have read that some video cards with a hdmi-dvi adapter do.

Yes, I had an older ATI card that did this so that's why I asked if maybe someone had tried it with this board.
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post #102 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 09:55 AM
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Ok, I didn't know that.
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post #103 of 364 Old 07-04-2011, 06:31 PM - Thread Starter
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I had an older Aopen SFF PC that did this and I believe it used Intel integrated graphics (965 maybe). Not sure about the H61.
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post #104 of 364 Old 07-05-2011, 08:10 AM
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With the H67 board I am getting occasional blue screens when restarting or shutting down. Also, I get occasional lockups which always seem to occur after I wake the computer up from sleep (if I shut it down completely it doesn't seem to happen).

I'm fairly sure my memory is fine because I took it from another PC that has been running solidly for many months at a time. My hard drive makes occasional loud cracking/clicking noises so this might be the culprit and I plan to replace it. I am also a little suspicious of the USB3 drivers since I have had a few devices plugged in to the USB3 ports just stop working for no apparent reason. Is anyone else having any problems like this?
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post #105 of 364 Old 07-08-2011, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Boulanger View Post

I've been doing straight rips of my BluRays to full resolution 1080p files and haven't noticed any performance issues at all. All files play through a gigabit network off a 2K8 server hardware RAID6 volume. Everything is very snappy including Media Center and Media Browser, but with perhaps only about 100 or so movies ripped. Unless it's a movie we're going to watch again and again (like a kids movie) I tend to delete them from my server after a while.

The only skip or stutter I see is perhaps after I've skipped around in the movie a lot. There may be a bit of stutter for a couple of seconds, but I don't feel like that is caused by the CPU.

All my systems do have 8GB of RAM and SSDs installed with an i3-2100T.

I would ASSUME that heat is less of an issue with SSDs, BUT, I haven't researched it. I guess there would be two questions, 1.) Does high heat affect SSDs in a less harmful way than Disk Drives and 2.) Is the actual temperature HIGHER or lower in an SSD drive than a Disk Drive?

It's one thing to say that SSDs are safer at higher temperatures than Disk Drives, BUT if they typically operate at a higher temperature (safe to the drive) it will have adverse affects on the overall system.
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post #106 of 364 Old 07-08-2011, 11:25 PM
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SSDs typically operate at a lower temperature than hard drives. The lack of motors and any moving parts goes a long way.

There is no difference in HDMI cables. If you can see the picture without visible dropouts or sparklies, the cable is working at 100%. No other cable will display a better version of that picture. You're simply wrong if you think there is a better digital cable than one that is already working.
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post #107 of 364 Old 07-13-2011, 10:12 AM
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I just bought an SSD for my build and I am excited to get things quicker with it. I hope that just the general browsing though movies in mediabrowser is improved. I have an SSD in my main htpc and it is much quicker. I still get some random lags about once a minute though which is annoying...

Anyways, I bought the silverstone NT07-1156 for my main htpc as my Scythe Shuriken is mis-seated and I am sick of dealing with it.

I am impressed with the heatsink, the first thing I noticed is that it has some good weight to it. Maybe it is a more dense metal that can cool more efficiently?

I am tempted to buy another for my Habey build, but I am still not sure if it is too tall or not...I measured from the bottom of the heatsink to the top of the fan to be 1.25" tall.

Anyone know the exact height of the intel stock low profile one?
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post #108 of 364 Old 07-13-2011, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
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I have read that the stock i3-2100t cooler is ~30mm high, but I can't say with certainty.
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post #109 of 364 Old 07-13-2011, 09:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Boulanger View Post

I have read that the stock i3-2100t cooler is ~30mm high, but I can't say with certainty.

That's what a lot of people have been saying. I ordered a G620, the non "T" version, but I'll be picking up a "T" cooler from a friend that runs a computer shop for my build with the Habbey case. I'll measure the non "T" and report back with the clearance comparison and post some pics. Can't wait to get this HTPC build off the ground, it's my first one but I've done the research!
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post #110 of 364 Old 07-13-2011, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Boulanger View Post

I have read that the stock i3-2100t cooler is ~30mm high, but I can't say with certainty.

I have the measurements with pictures in the first post of my sticky thread.


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post #111 of 364 Old 07-16-2011, 08:21 PM
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MAJOR BUMMER DUDE.

I'm using the Pentium G620 (NON "T") in my Habbey case. I used the stock fan and heatsink, however, I don't have a dvd/blue ray drive in it at the moment, so that's the only reason it fits. When the prices finally become reasonable for a slim blue-ray drive I'll have to go with a shorter heatsink/fan.

But the BUMMER, after watching a movie, I checked the CPU temperature using an AsRock utility that they provide (Mobo = AsRock H67 itx) and it was 72 C!!! I shutdown immediately (Max safe temp intel specs is 69, but I prefer to operate around 55) and I touched the case, and it was HOT. (72 C = 161 F).

I don't have any exhaust fans, the only fan I'm sporting is the heatsink fan. I don't know for sure if the fan kicked into high gear (I didn't hear it over the surround sound) but I would assume with those kind of temperatures it would. The AC was set to 76 F, so that was the maximum operating ambient temperature, give or take a few degrees because air temp isn't the exact same throughout a house. I had the case sitting out, on top of my TV stand, so it wasn't in a hot area. Also, I'm using and SSD to further help out with the temperature. I guess I'll try an exhaust fan, but I'd be surprised to see it help out enough.
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post #112 of 364 Old 07-17-2011, 01:02 AM
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I would make sure that you are playing videos with dxva enabled.
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post #113 of 364 Old 07-17-2011, 04:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Where do you see the max operating temp of the CPU being 69?

I believe that's the TCase rating, which is lower than what the core temps can safely reach (from what I understand). The Intel board I'm using, by default, does not alarm until the core temp reaches 85 I believe.

In my opinion I don't think 72 degrees is that alarming, though I think you should be able to get the temp down. Though my experience with this case is only with the i3-2100T.
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post #114 of 364 Old 07-17-2011, 06:05 PM
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I figured out why the temps were so high. I am running XBMC to display my media. Apparently because XBMC is not a multi-threaded application, the software causes the screen to refresh at 60 frames when in the media browsing menu. So if you have XBMC running, even if the screen is just sitting there while you're getting a beer, it's drawing the screen at 60 frames. I know, unbelievable, how could anyone let this happen.

From wiki:
Why does XBMC use x% CPU usage while sitting idle?

XBMC was originally written for the XBox game console, which is a single-threaded system (not a multi-tasking OS like Windows). As such, it was written in a game loop, rather than being event-driven. This means that the screen refreshes as fast as possible in order to "feel" responsive to the user. What this boils down to is that while sitting on the idle screen, XBMC is still repainting the screen at 60-90 frames per second (as can be seen by the FPS number if debug mode is enabled). This takes up a lot of processor power, because the "game" is still running, even though you may not be doing anything with it.

There are currently no intentions to change this, as it is a very low-level change of the entire XBMC platform. A few workarounds do exist though:

Enable the "blank" screensaver. This puts XBMC into a low FPS mode which uses much fewer resources.
Set an Idle timeout. In the PM3-HD skin, under Settings > System > Hardware there is the option to enable a "Shutdown function timer" and a "Shutdown function". The timer only counts down when media is not playing (it's not based on mouse movement like a typical screensaver). Setting the timer to something like 5 minutes, and the function to "Quit" will quit XBMC if no media has played for 5 minutes. It is also easy to use EventGhost or a similar application to register a remote button (or an Un-Idle event) to re-start XBMC.
Disable vertical blank sync in the System/Video Output directory. Alternatively, set vertical blank sync to "Enabled during video playback."

This issue is serious enough to have to seek out new media navigation and display software. The best part about XBMC is the user interface. Take that away, and I might as well use windows explorer to find the movies I want.

If anyone knows a fix, other than the workarounds from the wiki please help. I can't browse for a movie for more than 5 - 10 minutes without the processor heating up.

Also I should mention that the processor usage and temperature drop immensely during movie playback.
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post #115 of 364 Old 07-18-2011, 07:40 AM
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That is unfortunate about XBMC. Have you given Mediabrowser a shot?

I think that XBMC is great and simple, and I would probably use it if I could use my ceton tv tuner with it. But Mediabrowser is great too.

On another note, my temps have seemingly dropped since adding my SSD. Also, I figured out my stuttering issue while browsing around through mediabrowser, it was the music plugin.

It is a little odd that the temps dropped from 55-60ish to 47-52 with an SSD. I am curious how others without an SSD's temperatures are looking.

So everything is super fast and temps have dropped to around 50 according to speedfan. Very happy.

My last problem is with TMT 5. Although in the settings it says hardware acceleration, my blu rays still stutter and cpu usage is high, which would indicate that hardware acceleration is not working.
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post #116 of 364 Old 07-18-2011, 08:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FantaXP7 View Post

My last problem is with TMT 5. Although in the settings it says hardware acceleration, my blu rays still stutter and cpu usage is high, which would indicate that hardware acceleration is not working.

Mine stutters as well at times with blurays. I Can't figure it out either.
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post #117 of 364 Old 07-22-2011, 10:57 AM
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I'm also struggling with the heatsink for 2100T now. I will use a fanless heatsink and think now if I can use some fan heatsink just don't install the fan on it, it is a 35w CPU, is this should be fine?
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post #118 of 364 Old 07-23-2011, 11:48 AM
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This thread has inspired me to make a Ultra SFF bedroom HTPC.

What I am planning...

Habey EMC 600B Black Case
ASRock Mini-ITX Motherboard
Intel Pentium Sandy Bridge G620T CPU with low profile heatsink
G.Skill 2x2GB DDR3 1333 RAM
CIR IR receiver and WMC remote
Evercool 50mm case intake fan

OS Drive: TBD

A few questions:

1. How does a 2.5" laptop drive function in this case? Mainly I am worried about the excess heat so may choose a SSD for that reason. I think the cost difference would be about $60.
2. What is the best way to physically mount the CIR receiver to/through the case? Anyone have any pics of an example?


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post #119 of 364 Old 07-24-2011, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by assassin View Post

This thread has inspired me to make a Ultra SFF bedroom HTPC.

What I am planning...

Habey EMC 600B Black Case
ASRock Mini-ITX Motherboard
Intel Pentium Sandy Bridge G620T CPU with low profile heatsink
G.Skill 2x2GB DDR3 1333 RAM
CIR IR receiver and WMC remote
Evercool 50mm case intake fan

OS Drive: TBD

A few questions:

1. How does a 2.5" laptop drive function in this case? Mainly I am worried about the excess heat so may choose a SSD for that reason. I think the cost difference would be about $60.
2. What is the best way to physically mount the CIR receiver to/through the case? Anyone have any pics of an example?


I had a 2.5" laptop drive in mine for awhile. It worked out well. The temps dropped and of course a massive speed increase when I replaced with my ssd.

What I did for the CIR is drilled a hole through the front and mounted there. I believe the OP has some pics of his install which came out nicer than mine.
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post #120 of 364 Old 07-24-2011, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by fubird View Post

I'm also struggling with the heatsink for 2100T now. I will use a fanless heatsink and think now if I can use some fan heatsink just don't install the fan on it, it is a 35w CPU, is this should be fine?

Are you saying that you are thinking of running this without a heatsink on your cpu? Then NO. What is wrong with the stock intel heatsink?
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