SilverStone Sugo SG05 (Mini-ITX Chassis)

The Installation

The Installation

As SilverStone states that the SG05 can accept a graphics card of up to 9 inches long, we will test this out with a GeForce GTX 250 equipped with a dual-slot cooler. Other chosen components for the installation include a Zotac Mini-ITX board with a dual-core processor and cooler fan mounted together with a 3.5-inch hard drive.

Some of the components that we used to outfit the SG05. This included a dual-slot GeForce GTX 250 graphics card, a Zotac Mini-ITX motherboard with the full complement of memory, a standard dual-core processor with cooler and a 3.5-inch hard drive.

Hard drives of the 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch variety are supported by the SG05 but you're limited to two. Also, you can either install a pair 2.5-inch drives or a mix of a 2.5-inch and a 3.5-inch, but not a pair of 3.5-inch drives. This is due to the drive cage having only sufficient space for a single 3.5-inch drive, since one of two bays included is only suitable for a 2.5-inch.

Since this drive cage is made up of two separate metal bays linked together with screws, putting them back together is not as easy as we had expected. The same could be said of the installation for this chassis in general. SilverStone continues to rely heavily on screws for this chassis and its other designs too, when other brands may be experimenting or fully converted to tool-free designs.

A slim optical DVD drive is needed for this chassis. Fortunately, SilverStone has a couple of models for sale though we wished the company had included a drive together with the casing.

Another obstacle that may stump some users is the choice of a slim optical drive bay on the SG05. Obviously, it helps to have a slim optical drive due to space constraints but it's not as widely available as the normal version. SilverStone has planned for this by offering customers its own slim optical drive but it's an additional cost that is not included with the SG05. If you're interested, the models are SOD01 (slot loading DVD drive) and TOB01 (tray loading DVD drive).

Meanwhile, we had to make do with a slim optical drive scavenged from a notebook that didn't fit that well with the chassis. The bezel of the drive was marginally too thick and could not slot neatly into the SG05's slot. In any case, it illustrates a potential stumbling block that enthusiasts should consider before getting this chassis.

Our dual-slot graphics card took up both available expansion slots but there was ample space for it length-wise.

We had to use a Molex-to-PCIe adapter to connect the power from the PSU to the graphics card. It was rather tight inside the casing but there was sufficient room to connect all the cables.

Installing the motherboard was not too much of a trouble, with the motherboard standoffs already in place in the chassis. What hindered us quite often during the process were the power cables, which got in the way constantly, whether we were fitting the motherboard or the drive cage. SilverStone probably could have gone for shorter cables that take up less space given the small confines of the chassis.

At least we had no issues with installing our 9-inch GeForce GTX 250 graphics card. Using a Molex power connector, we had just the right amount of space to angle it to fit the 6-pin PCIe power connector on the graphics card (using an adapter). There was no excess space though so some cable twisting is required. The dual-slot fan on the graphics card however had more than sufficient room, though that of course used up both expansion slots on the motherboard and the chassis.

With our hard drive, motherboard and processor installed, it's getting a bit too cozy inside the Sugo.

One of the advantages of the SG05 chassis design highlighted by SilverStone is that one can use a stock or third party cooler for the CPU, as the height clearance (measured at 78mm) does not necessitate a custom, low profile cooler. While we could fit our stock cooler for the CPU comfortably, it looked a bit snug and most typical third-party coolers would probably not fit. However, those like the Scythe Shuriken (64mm) may be suitable.

Ventilation should not be an issue with the SG05, judging from the many air vents, including this side of the chassis near the graphics card.

Ventilation however appears to be well handled by the SG05. Besides the 120mm intake fan, the other ventilation holes, especially the ones near the graphics are nicely positioned and more than adequate.

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