X58 in a Pocket - Shuttle SX58H7

Shuttle Style

Shuttle Style

The Shuttle X58 is no bigger than its other siblings and is about the size of a compact oven. It's decked entirely in black and it looks stylishly understated. There's nothing to indicate that it is in fact Shuttle's top-of-the-line SFF. Perhaps the only thing that gives away its credentials is the additional LEDs on the front panel to indicate WiFi and Bluetooth activity.

The casing has a high-gloss black finish, which is nice to look at, but at the same time it is somewhat of a fingerprint magnet. The front panel, fortunately, was of a different material. The plastic front was still glossy, but happily, leaves behind no visible fingerprint marks.

There's space for a 5.25-inch optical drive, while the middle bay can be used either for a 3.5-inch hard disk or a floppy disk drive. At the bottom of the front panel are your audio jacks, USB and eSATA ports.

Here we have a headphone jack, a mic-in jack, two USB 2.0 ports, an eSATA port and the reset button.

The entire Shuttle X58H7 is glossy. Even the sides. This makes it a magnet for fingerprints and smudges too.

Around the back, the ports are all neatly placed, labeled and accessible. There's also a handy Clear CMOS button, located at the bottom right corner. It's small enough such that you won't hit it by accident, but large enough so that you can reach it if need be.

There are also vents for the system's two fans, the larger one is for the I.C.E. (Integrated Cooling Engine) module that cools the processor, and a smaller one for the PSU. The larger fan for the I.C.E., we must note, is incredibly loud during operation. A quick check with the BIOS indicated that it was spinning near its maximum of 4000rpm, and no matter what we did, we couldn't bring it down.

Coming to the rear, we see that it's dominated by the fan exhaust that helps facilitate cooling the I.C.E. module inside for the processor.

Despite being a SFF, the Shuttle SX58H7 has all the ports and connectivity options you could ask for. Six USB 2.0 ports, two eSATA ports, dual Gigabit RJ-45 LAN ports, audio jacks and a eSATA power port for additional SATA hard disks.

The Clear CMOS button is located right here.

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