Reviews > Cases > SilverStone ML05 - The Mini-ITX HTPC benchmark Review

SilverStone ML05 - The Mini-ITX HTPC benchmark Review

Published by Christian Ney on 24.10.13 (32292 reads)
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With the Milo ML05, SilverStone is offering a Mini-ITX enclosure targeting enthusiasts seeking for a small but yet powerful Home Theater PC. Despite the small form factor, the case can still house up to three fans, up to six 2.5" drives and is very affordable. HTPC cases have been quite expensive traditionally but SilverStone's ML05 is wide available at a price as low as 37 Euros. Therefore we are curious to see if the quality is still au rendez-vous and what can be done with such a case.



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Presentation




The ML05 is the latest addition to SilverStone's Milo series, the manufacturer's slim size HTPC enclosure series. The previous models being all Micro-ATX based, the ML05 we have here is the first one to be only Mini-ITX capable which makes it the smallest Milo case to date.

 


The case looks really nice from the outside. The Milo ML05 features a steel body and an acrylic and plastic front panel. This one is very well finished, in fact the front panel is a real mirror. There are only the manufacturer's logo, the power and reset buttons and the optical disc drive mouth that break the sober design. The top panel has two intake mesh vents, a small one to feed the SFX power supply with fresh air and a big 120mm located above the motherboard spot. The right side features the I/O including two USB3.0, the audio headphone and mic jacks as well as two 80mm exhaust mesh vents. The left side is empty of features. The back of the case is standard with the motherboard I/O cut, one single low profile PCI expansion slot and the power supply cut. Upper the motherboard I/O cut there is a full PCI expansion slot as well as a VGA (D-sub) cutout.
Last but not least, SilverStone let you choose whether to equip the case with rubber feet or not.

 


Once the top is out of the way we have a clear view at the inside of the case. Here we have a removable drive cage capable of housing up to four 2.5" drives and a multipurpose 4-in-1 bracket. The latter allows the installation of one slim optical drive or one 3.5" drive or two 2.5" drives or one 120mm fan at your will. Apart from that there are the front I/O connectors and well as two rubber feet for the power supply.
Before going any further, the complete specifications.

Specifications
Model SST-ML05B (Black)
Material Acrylic and plastic front panel, 0.8mm steel body
Motherboard support Mini-ITX
External drive bay 9.5mm/12.7mm slim slot-loading optical drive x 1 (replaceable with 3.5” HDD x 1 or 2.5” HDD x 2 or 120mm fan x 1)
Internal drive bay 2.5" x 4
Cooling Side: 2 x 80mm (Optional)
Top: 1 x 120mm (same  as external drive bay)
Expansion slots 1 x low profile PCI + VGA (D-sub)
1 x PCI (front top)
I/O 2 x USB 3.0 (side)
1 x Audio (side)
1 x MIC (side)
1 x Power (front)
1 x Reset (front)
Power supply Support 1 x SFX (optional)
PSU limitation 140mm depth (according to the product page)
100mm depth (actual)
CPU cooler limitation 37~70mm height (according to the product page) 42~72mm height (according to us)
Net weight 2.1 kg
Dimension 350mm (W) x 99 mm (H) x 204 mm (D)


Package / Bundle


 


The bundle is nice and complete but could have been improved. There is a manual, a set of crews, three wire ties, a 140mm dust filter, four rubber feet and four rubber spacers for the 120mm fan.
We would have liked to see another dust filter to cover the power supply mesh grill. Since the manufacturer provides one for the main intake mesh grill and quite some air is going to pass by the power supply grill we think that's missing. We also would have liked to have soft wire ties instead of those hard plastic ones. In our opinion the soft ones are way more handy.
The manual is available in ten different languages and does a good job overall. It is easy to read, and everything is explained in detail with illustrations but unfortunately there are some mistakes.
Regarding the set of crews we would have liked to see 8 or 12 black fan screws as well as four black power supply screws. Other than that the provided screws are of good quality. We screwed and unscrewed the same ones for three days on a row and they still look like new.



Page 1 - Presentation
Page 2 - Building the HTPC - Setup and Software
Page 3 - Building the HTPC - Part I
Page 4 - Building the HTPC - Part II
Page 5 - Noise and Thermal Testing
Page 6 - Conclusion







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