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Thread: nMedia HTPC 288-BA Enclosure with L.I.S. VFE Digital Display




  1. #1
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    Default nMedia HTPC 288-BA Enclosure with L.I.S. VFE Digital Display

    Please feel free to comment about our story entitled "nMedia HTPC 288-BA Enclosure with L.I.S. VFE Digital Display"

  2. #2

    Default Re: nMedia HTPC 288-BA Enclosure with L.I.S. VFE Digital Display

    Great review, but...

    I think you missed the mark a little. You're looking at it from the wrong angle. This case is not for the PC enthusiast; it is for the HT enthusiast who wants to add a PC/DVR/music server to his home theater/stereo system. So the review should be, or at least include, evaluations from that viewpoint too.

    As you pointed out, the popularity of the Home Theater PC is growing rapidly. To that point, I think it is important to note there are millions of PC enthusiasts out there, like me, who were a part of the "audiophile" quality electronics revolution that started in the late 60s. Some of us "electronics geeks" are into stereo equipment and home theater audio/video equipment as deeply, if not more so, as we (and you) are into computers and networking today.

    I love computers - IS/IT has been my life for 35+ years - I have 8 networked in my wired house. But I have a lot more $$$ tied up in my home theater/stereo equipment. Some folks have $10,000 (or much more!) just in speakers! As a audio/video enthusiast, the HTPC is just another component in my system, a peripheral. Yes, aesthetics are somewhat important, but not really - all the electronics are suppose to disappear when listening to music or watching a movie. Peripherals are not suppose to standout. Remember, HTPCs came out of the HT enthusiasts camp with the "silent" PC. We don't want bright or flickering lights distracting our listening and viewing experience, and I don't want to hear a bunch of fans whirling around during the quiet passages.

    Audiophiles (and videophiles) are a very discerning crowd. We have one goal, "the precise reproduction of audio and video". Any difference between what we hear and see, and what was laid down on the disk or came down the cable, even the smallest anomaly, is "distortion", and is unacceptable! No clicks, pops, scratches, or hiss. No clipping, clamping, wows or flutters. No pixelization, blurs, or ghosts. And NO fan noise.

    The HTPC is a piece of home theater equipment. This case has 3 fans! How much noise do all three make? Are they quality fans? No speed controls? Ball bearings or sleeve? I want to know the SPL in dBs at 10 feet! I want to know how much space it is going to take up my shelf. I want to know if a standard video card will fit or do we need to use low profile, or stick with on-board the motherboard?

    Audio/Videophiles want to know if we can hear a HTPC with 3 case fans, a silent or near silent power supply, and a quiet CPU HSF from our listening chairs?

    The case was criticized for not accepting a full size motherboard. I don't think that is justified. Again, this case is for the HTPC - a component in the home theater system. It is meant to store and serve audio and video to the A/V receiver or some other component. As noted, this case has good drive support, but other than that, it should disappear. Therefore, smaller is better, and not a fault - hence the growing popularity of the mini-ITX motherboards. HTPC cases are not intended to house gaming rigs. If the PC is to be used for very demanding tasks, such as gaming, then you need a case for that purpose.

    JMHO.
    ***

    Concerning mounting the HDs. You said you can only secure the drive with two screws from the top. Are those rivets holding that drive cage in there? My quinquagenarian eyes can't make that out. There's no access from underneath? I am not crazy with the idea that only friction is holding that side of the drives in place.

    That said, thanks for the review. HTPC builders want exposure to new products, and the HTPC hardware makers need to know we are out here looking.

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