SilverStone Sugo SG07 Mini ITX Case
The small form factor case market is, well, a small one. There are few offerings available, and even fewer companies that compete. But "small form" encompasses a wider range of sizes than you’d think; some figure a micro ATX would qualify, some believe a chassis that’s just smaller than a mid-tower is acceptable. Call us purists, but we disagree. A true SFF case is one that’s about the size of a big shoebox, plain and simple. And having designs that are made for mini ITX motherboards is rather rare, and it’s slim pickings out there.
SilverStone is known for their high-end, premium enclosures that provide tasteful minimalist designs to discerning consumers looking for top quality. And the Sugo SG07 fits the bill, for the most part. It does indeed have a wonderfully simple and alluring aesthetic, showcases a smart internal design, and comes with a mini powerhouse of a power supply, all packed into a truly small form factor. The inherent problem with an SFF chassis is that compromise is the name of the game, whether it’s features, space, cooling, or price; something must be trimmed down to make it all work. That being said, SilverStone has done a fine job of avoiding cutting corners, so to speak, while maintaining a robust package.
Perhaps most impressive is the SG07’s cooling ability. There’s no two ways about it: this little case does an excellent job at keeping a gaming behemoth in check, not only fitting a 12.2" Radeon 5970 inside, but also keeping the temperatures suitably controlled during heavy loads. With the massive 180mm Air Penetrator fan intaking cool air, a downward-design CPU heatsink pours that airflow directly across the motherboard components and quickly out of the case. Creating positive air pressure here will help to avoid dust problems, but it won’t escape it altogether with ventilation holes nearly everywhere on the SG07.
The power supply is another bonus here, it is a quality little unit, holding its own with a heavily loaded system. We would prefer if the +12V rail was a bit less undervolted, but the voltage regulation was very good nonetheless. The only detractions here were the clearance problem with the expansion slot bracket, and lack of good cable management opportunities built into the case. There are places to tuck away cables, but it will take some effort and patience, and good cable management is fundamental when working with a small form factor case.
Currently listing for about $220 USD, that is a good deal when you consider an 80PLUS Bronze quality 600W power supply is included. Virtually all competitors in the SFF market either include garbage power supplies or none at all, and I’ve not seen any competitors that can house a Radeon 5970 inside, let alone power one. Factor in the excellent cooling performance, ability to house two 2.5" drives and a 3.5" as well, the nearly silent operation, and you’re left with some excellent value for what you get in return. So the Sugo SG07 does command a bit of a premium price but as the old saying goes; “you get what you pay for”.
Small form factor cases serve a specialized need and niche market, and they also bring a unique set of features and restrictions as well. Comparing them to full-sized cases is an exercise in futility; it’s apples and oranges. But there is limited selection for consumers looking to purchase an SFF case, and finding a quality one with features like the Sugo SG07 is rare. Although the SG07 has a few very minor shortcomings, its appeal far outweighs any drawbacks. If you are in the market for a true small form factor case, and especially in a mini ITX size, the SilverStone Sugo SG07 is one of the very best you’ll find.
Silverstone Sugo SG07