Building a Small Form Factor Gaming PC: Silverstone SG10, Haswell Hardware and More

By on July 25, 2013, 1:46 AM

For years now we've had the ability to take a compact Micro ATX motherboard along with a high-end GPU and squeeze them into a custom case not much bigger than a shoe box. We did it back in 2010 with the Lian Li Mini Q PC-V354. The following year we tried out the less subtle Thermaltake Armor A30 which was outfitted with similar hardware.

However before either of those reviews were published I got my first real taste of serious small form factor gaming back in 2009 with the Silverstone SG04. Since then I haven’t laid eyes on another Silverstone SFF case, until now.

Recently Silverstone sent us their latest Sugo case. Known as the SG10, this latest version is actually slightly smaller than the SG04 with a 23 liter capacity. However, like the earlier model, it supports all of the latest and greatest hardware in a MicroATX form factor. Giving a product like the Sugo SG10 real purpose are motherboards such as the new Asrock Z87M Extreme. These MicroATX motherboards provide all the features found on larger standard ATX boards. The Z87M Extreme4 is a Haswell motherboard, so we tested one of the new Core i5 processors (i5-4430).

Read the complete article.




User Comments: 17

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Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

SFF systems do make some sense in certain scenarios, but as far as I'm concerned I'll just stick with a proper desktop configuration. Less is not more in this instance.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Nice!!

VitalyT VitalyT said:

In the past I thought of a small system as a quiet system, but I know now it is not really so.

If you want a high performance quiet system, go for a full-size PC. I just put together the most quiet desktop I ever assembled, which took some space, I.e. large and really quiet components: [link]

I now I wouldn't be able to do the same if I went for a smaller form factor. Noctua NH-D14 is a must-have for high-performing quiet system, and it is a beast that requires lots of space.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Small form factor systems are not really meant for pushing benchmark boundaries. Though people try, which is where in my opinion would make SFF loud. Could anyone imagine the turbulence needed, to make a tablet perform as well as a high-end desktop? Tablets are quiet because they are performance limited, SFF PC's are not that much different. However if anyone is willing to deal with noise, they can push SFF as hard as temps will allow.

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Steve Steve said:

In the past I thought of a small system as a quiet system, but I know now it is not really so.

If you want a high performance quiet system, go for a full-size PC. I just put together the most quiet desktop I ever assembled, which took some space, I.e. large and really quiet components: [link]

I now I wouldn't be able to do the same if I went for a smaller form factor. Noctua NH-D14 is a must-have for high-performing quiet system, and it is a beast that requires lots of space.

You seem to have completely missed the point of a small gaming system. You can't say build in a full-size case if you want to take it to LAN parties? Gamers who attend LAN parties or game locally with friends want a mobile PC but don't want to sacrifice performance. Our SFF build achieves this, furthermore it is anything but loud, its just as quiet as any full tower build I have done.

Also you have assumed a lot, the Noctua NH-D14 fits in the SG10 case.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

That's probably the most impressive mini itx case I've seen yet, it doesn't trade length and height for width like a lot of cases do.

Joe Mead said:

I recently put together a build for a friend using this SG10 and all I can say is that pictures don't do this case justice. The case quality is just superb, especially the front grill and brushed alluminum face. I've heard alot of issues with people trying to get the back/top part of the case back on, but I had none (though I used some fairly nitpicked parts.) I went with a 550W Silverstone ST55F-G and picked up their smaller cable kit (PP05) which helped a ton. Also a 1TB Western Digital Black, 128GB Samsung 840 Pro, Core i5-4430, Gigabyte GA-Z87MX-D3H, Cooler Master GeminII M4, and a 2 x 4GB kit of G.Skill Ripjaw X 2400MHz sticks. Rock solid and very quiet build.

My only question is on page 5, you had a shot of a Crucial M4 in one of the 2.5" brackets, but didn't mention that in the specs. Was that just for showing physical space usage?

JC713 JC713 said:

That is one tiny performance PC! Once again TS, great job.

lipe123 said:

Next time you should fit a water cooling system into one of these!

That would be pretty damn sweet I'm sure a nice compact setup would easily fit that case. Using one of the 5.25" bays for the reservoir and pump and mounting the radiator against the large top fan ^^

Do it for the kids!

Sniped_Ash said:

I currently have a Lian Li PC-354b and like how it looks and how little it weighs, but it seems like the airflow could be better. Other Micro-ATX & Mini-ITX cases are either ugly as hell or have way too few/small vents. This Silverstone looks like the mATX case I've been looking for...

Guest said:

That's the case I have. It's the Silverstone SG10. Loaded with the Gigabyte Sniper M5, GTX 780, Intel 4770, 16GB Corsair RAM, 512GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD, Windows 7, and I'm loving every minute of it.

Hmm, cool box if you don't have much room but I still prefer to go Lian Li PC-D8000 Review: Double-Sized, HPTX Tower: [link] :)

Love the case. Very nice system for sure.

edit by LNCPapa since this is all the same guest.

Guest said:

Those in here stating that you can't get the same performance in a small form factor as full size PCs don't really know what they are talking about. It's just all about fitting the same components in this chassis. Of course you can't use an ATX MB and run multiple video card setups but I'm willing to bet you can play Battlefield 3 to the max settings without a glitch. With Ivy bridge (I'm not too thrilled about Haswell), 700 series Nvidia graphics, and small form factor MB's that provide the same functionality, performance, and endurance as full size ATX boards, you really can't go wrong with this chassis. I'll never buy a full tower ever again.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Using one of the 5.25" bays for the reservoir and pump and mounting the radiator against the large top fan
I don't recall seeing a 5.25 drive bay, in fact that is my only complaint.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

I started reading and then I got to the second paragraph...

The following year we tried out the less subtle Thermaltake Armor A30 which was outfitted with similar hardware. That review was best known for our apparently controversial decision to use a 2L coke bottle for a size comparison.

I forgot all about this review and just read the comments on the Thermaltake. LOL.

noobieneil said:

hello,

I am liking this build lots and am thinking of purchasing to replace my aging!! current build.

I run a lot of vmware for both work and personal as studying exams for job, cisco & microsoft.

I have a couple of questions though:

How quiet is this setup does anyone know using the current config and if I added more fans?

Do we think the onboard vga will be sufficient until I can afford a proper card?

I can't quite make up mind on how many 3.5" hdd it can hold,

Thanks

noobieneil said:

Hello,

Is anyone able to pass comment on my questions please? or would I do better to start a thread in the forum?

Thanks

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Yes, make your own thread please.

I will pre-emptively tell you that this case is not a good idea for your intended purpose, but we can discuss more in another thread.

Tag me with @

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