SilverStone GD06 HTPC Chassis
Author: Michael O'Neill
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 03-28-2011
Provided by: SilverStone
Cooling / Internal

Though cooling isn't normally a priority when it comes to HTPCs, SilverStone did not slack on any of the cooling features. The case comes out of the box with three 120mm 1200RPM fans. These guys will do a good job at keeping the air moving, without creating much noise. There are also two optional rear facing areas to mount 80mm fans of your choice. All of the fans have screen filters built into them which is nice to keep your internal components dust free, but also remember to clean them regularly!

One of the more simple, yet intuitive cooling features SilverStone put into this case is a honeycomb style area for your PSU fan that gives it direct access to outside air. This area is at the bottom of the case and hidden from view. It is important to note this feature could become a detriment if the case is not placed on a solid flat surface as the vent could become obstructed by an irregular surface or lightweight objects like a piece of fabric or paper.

There are several passive vents cut into the case along the top and sides to provide additional cooling. Optionally a slot blower can be installed in the non-PCI functional rear slot. You can also opt to replace the 120mm fans with 80mm fans as there are screw holes for the smaller fan, though the reason to do that is unclear. All and all, this is a solid arsenal of cooling features for any PC case and should provide more than enough cooling for any range of HTPC you would like to setup.

There are three places to put internal hard drives: one directly above the PSU (3.5 or 2.5), one under the 5.25 bay (3.5 only), and one directly above the hard drive docks (2.5 drive only here). Combined with the dual drive docks on the front, this case supports a nice range of hard drive options considering its size and the 2.5 mounts will be nice for those of you with SSDs. Getting to the bays is not straight forward and requires some disassembly of the internal brackets, but the process is not overly complicated and is hardly worth making a fuss over.

Since this is a HTPC case, space is limited and the internals are very busy. With this in mind some thought has to be put into the components being installed as large video cards and heatsink fans are not going to work in this case. This is hardly a bad thing as this case was designed to have a small footprint, but it is something to bear in mind as you design your system for this case. Excerpts of diagrams relating to space limitations from the GD06 manual are included above and if you are seriously considering this case for your system, you may want to completely review the product manual provided by SilverStone on their website.

Internal cables are the normal array of front panel connectors that we are all use to. Internal USB 3.0 headers are included as well as legacy USB 2.0 connectors should your motherboard not support USB 3.0 natively via a header. There are also SATA and Molex cables coming out of the front hard drive dock bays that are hardwired to the case so if you don't plan on using the docks these will need to be tucked away. All of the cables are a bit longer than they needed to be and makes cable management a bit challenging. More on this as we move on to installing hardware just ahead.

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