Much like the Brix Pro, the Brix Gaming comes apart easily. I took four screws out, and I was in:
Inside, I found a 2.5" hard-drive caddy on the Brix Gaming's bottom plate. I didn't have a 2.5" drive to install, but one can easily see how it's done: remove the tray, slide your disk of choice under the tabs at the end, secure it with the two screw holes at the bottom, re-attach the tray to the bottom plate, and plug in the combined SATA data and power cable from the Brix Gaming's motherboard.
All of the Brix Gaming's expansion slots are on the bottom of the motherboard. The SO-DIMM and mSATA slots are free of obstructions and easily accessible. You can also see the combined SATA power and data cable for the 2.5" bay taped down in the center of the picture. The wireless card sits under the mSATA slot, and a pair of fans on the left side of the case draw in cooling air, which is then expelled from a vent on the right side.
Removing the port cover allows for a glimpse at the top half of the interior:
There's a lot of heatsink in there, though not as much as I expected. I would have loved to take the Brix Gaming apart further, but removing the motherboard is difficult, and I didn't want to break anything. (This was a loaner from Gigabyte.) Based on the placement of the heatsinks, it appears the CPU resides on top of the motherboard, while the GPU is on a daughter board that sits at the very top of the case. You can see its mini-DisplayPort and mini-HDMI outputs in the picture above.
Given the limited heatsink area, I'm a little puzzled by a couple of the exterior design decisions. The enclosure's top plate is solid, which means it blocks any hot air that might rise from the bottom of the GPU daughter card. Also, on the intake side of the case, one of the fans is partially blocked by an angled section of the fascia:
As we'll soon see, the Brix Gaming needs all the help it can get on the cooling front. Any obstruction to airflow or heat dissipation, deliberate or otherwise, is bad news.
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