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Gerbil In Training
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New SFF dilemma

Sun Apr 13, 2003 11:51 am

Hello everyone. This is my first post.

For those who have experience with different SFF setups, I really need some advice. Right now, I'm looking to get a new pre-built system based on Shuttle's SB51G case (probably from GamePC), outfitted with a P4 2.66MHz, Radeon 9700 pro, Audigy 2, 1 Gig Corsair 2700XMS DDR, Seagate Barracuda V 120 w/8MB cache, 16X DVD drive, and a dual boot config with XP Home and 98SE. However, it seems like many people with similar configurations are having problems with heat and/or noise levels inside the case, probably caused by having the hot-running 9700 sandwiched between the sound card and the side of the case. So that either the system will periodically overheat and crash, or the case fan is running at near-deafening levels frequently while under heavy loads. Low noise is an especially important factor for me as I live in a dorm-like environment and cannot turn my speakers up very loud.

Can anyone with a setup similar to this confirm that they have been having these types of problems? And what would be the best solution? Some things I have been considering are: downgrading to a Radeon 9600 pro which is made from .13 micron and should run much cooler, getting rid of the Audigy 2 card, or waiting for a better, cooler SFF system to be released. The problem with that second option is that I have a very large library of Win 95/98 based games that do not run on XP (at least not on my notebook), and I am worried that the onboard sound for the 845GE will cause compatibility problems in Win98 with some games that would not happen with the Audigy 2. Is there anyone who runs Win98 on this mobo who has not had problems using the onboard sound?

Any and all advice is very greatly appreciated.

Dell Inspiron 8100 w/ WinXP Home
Intel P3-m 1.2 GHz
ATI Radeon 7500 Mobility
Onboard ESS Maestro 3i audio
30GB UltraATA HD 4200RPM
6X Toshiba DVD-ROM
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Sun Apr 13, 2003 6:10 pm

I have a Radeon 9700pro (made by crucial) in my machine and I"m running a 1900+ Palomino core.... quite possibly the hottest running chip I could have. I'm running it in the SK41G2 and I have no real problems with heat. I'm also going to mod out the system with fans and reduce the heat even more. I can run F@H 24 hours a day, and when the room is well ventilated I never hit up to 46. It'll hit 50 if its stuffy in my own small dorm room. And I don't have a whole lot of noise issues, either. But I just added two 80 mm intake fans (slow turning, lighted ones, just for fun) and it is keeping my HD's cooler. HD cooling seems to be the biggest issue I may have... I'm running an 80 and 200 gig 7200 on top of each other.
Sony RX1rII
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Sun Apr 13, 2003 7:05 pm

I have an SB51G with a 2.4B, WD800BB, Pioneer A05, and 9700 Pro, have had the things up for weeks with no lockups or shutdowns.
I did replace the main fan with an 80mm panoflo and cut out the bottom 3.5 level so that I can attach a hdd cooler that I had.
I get around 38c causal use and top out at 53c gaming.
You should be fine.
Noise is a little more then I expected but not deafening, when I had the B1 Sunon in I had it on its lowest speed and the temperatures were a little bit better then now but it wasnt all that much louder.
And as far as the sound card goes ditch the audigy, I find the onboard to be quite good, that and I would *NEVER* put anythign Creative Labs in any of my computers ever again.
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Sun Apr 13, 2003 11:49 pm

RandomNull wrote:
And as far as the sound card goes ditch the audigy, I find the onboard to be quite good, that and I would *NEVER* put anythign Creative Labs in any of my computers ever again.

I hear you there, I just had to move back to a KT266A-based board after my nForce2 died, thus going from Soundstorm to my previously-retired Audigy. Ugh, after tangling with the drivers for an hour or so, I was finally greeted with craptastic winamp sound quality :evil:
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Sat Apr 19, 2003 11:29 am

I have a SS51G coupled with a P4 2.4 and a Radeon 9700 Pro. I really haven't had any problems with heat releated lockups. However, I've tweaked my system a little bit to cut down on some of the heat. I turned off Auto Guardian in the BIOS so the exhaust fan runs at 4000 rpm. I also cut the metal cover off the back to allow more air to travel thru the back exhaust fan.

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Thu Jul 03, 2003 4:52 am

I have an SB51G with a 2.4 P4, WD SE and IBM 60GXP drives, a DVD/CDRW combo drive, GF Ti4200 (too be replaced by an ATI Radeon 9800 Pro soon), and an M-Audio Revolution. It runs great, and reasonably cool, even with those two hard drives there to heat things up, so I wouldn't worry too much about the heat. My only suggestions to you are as follows:

1. Ditch the Audigy. First, you might want to give the onboard audio a try, since it's not that bad. And if you don't like it, get the M-Audio Revolution, which I like MUCH better than the Audigy 2. That, and one less customer for Creative is good news to me.

2. If the price difference isn't too great, spend the extra money to upgrade to the Corsair 3200XMS. Since Intel's using an 800MHz FSB now, I bet even their non-P4 "C" chips will have nice overclocking headroom--the better RAM will make sure that they're not the thing holding it back. If you're worried about heat, I was able to get my 2.4 up to 2.8, but that was a little too hot for me, but at 2.6, it was great, so overclocking is definitely possible--even in these tiny things.

3. XP Pro is much better than XP Home. It's $50 more, but it's probably worth it, especially if your school is running a Novell network. XP Pro is just has more networking options, and I've had a much easier time setting up friends' computers running Pro than Home.

4. GamePC is expensive. While I've never had anyone build a system for me, I think ABS is cheaper, and they have good ratings (quite a bit better than GamePC).

Anyway, I live in a dorm room too, and it's nice having such as small computer...especially since I have two rather large towers sitting under my desk too... It's also cool to be able to put the thing in its bag (which is very handy) and take it on the plane when I go home.

Good luck with your purchase...hope it all goes well.

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Thu Jul 03, 2003 3:49 pm

My SB51G is running sweet 24/7 with a 8500 AIW and a P4 2.4B. I love it :)
No wonder television's a medium. It's so seldom rare or well done. -Mighty Mouse
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Wed Jul 23, 2003 4:56 pm

First of all, Howard: I have got the exact same system with the SB51G/ 2.4B & the AIW 8500 and I love it!

Now I was wondering if the problems that I have had with system freezes are all software related. It has always happened while using PVR software which really puts the Shuttle through its paces. I hope it is just the software!

Anyways, I now have room in the 3.5” Drive bay after I ripped out my floppy, and installed a dual fan control/temp display from evermax. With that room in back I was wondering if I could install a couple of small fans to keep my 160gig 7200rpm HD cool.

If anyone can tell me if I should, and if so, how I should direct the heat and/ or position the fan(s).

Thanks! -- Jason

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