So, I've spent the evening trawling for ideas, and landed on this fantastic forum.
So look, I'm searching for a small, good looking HTPC case, but yet just big enough to house:
* 2 expansion slots on motherboard. 1 for dual HD Sat receiver, other for graphics card (as I understand this is basically needed over integrated for decent performance)
*Silent or close
It'll boot from a SSD, prob. XBMC on some Linux, so no need for HDD's.
It'll record to NAS, stream from NAS.
Kind of like an Apple TV, but so much better.
What case? There must be one for me? Anyone care to offer any thoughts?
I would rather add my own PSU.
One option I don't think anybody else will suggest is a small 3U server case:
I use the 4U one with the front handles taken off.
A more conventional case would be a SIlverstone ML04B for example.
Or cheaper yet, and with a PSU (probably not much good) an hec 7K09BBA30FNRX.
I'll add an opinion to this though. "sexy little" to me means LOUD!!! Especially with all the guts you intend on using.
Aesthetics, Small Size and Silent. Pick two out of the three. You won't find all three in one case.
Seriously though, I understand WAF. I have to worry about it as well. Find the best looking case you can that has tons of ventilation. Start there. Skymad is dead on when he suggests looking at server chassis'. You can find server chassis' that are very simple looking. While not "sexy" you can probably pass the WAF.
Is there anything for satellite like the HD Homerun devices? My computers got MUCH simpler when I started using network tuners and not PCI devices. That would open up mini-ITX options. Still don't get fooled by the mini-ITX those CPU fans can spin up pretty loud in a tight case like that.