SilverStone Precision PS07 Case Review Reduxby Dustin Sklavos on September 20, 2013 12:00 PM EST
I'll admit I'm not especially happy with using the mini-ITX testbed for micro-ATX enclosures; the problem is that micro-ATX, despite being essentially the most logical form factor for the overwhelming majority of builds, still has tremendous difficulty gaining traction in the industry. I've heard from higher ups at a lot of different manufacturers that micro-ATX doesn't really sell as well as it ought to; enthusiasts and more mainstream builders are still leaning towards full ATX, while mini-ITX is gaining obvious traction for simpler designs.
With all that in mind, I've actually used the SilverStone PS07's senior sibling, the Temjin TJ08-E, for a more powerful build and found it to be exceptional. This thermal design has a lot to recommend it, but it's interesting to see if SilverStone's eye towards efficiency helps distinguish the PS07 from the competing cases.
Thermals are good but not great. Keep in mind that the mini-ITX testbed uses a traditional downward-directed air cooler as opposed to a tower cooler; anecdotally, my experience is that tower coolers perform tremendously well in this chassis.
It's as quiet as any of the others, though. This is batting pretty far below the PS07's class.
Install a more modest HTPC style configuration and the PS07's performance is still a bit iffy. It competes but not especially strongly.
While the original version of the PS07 isn't listed here, I can confirm independently that the newer fans in this revision are most definitely quieter. Noise levels aren't ideal, but they're at least on the low side. Note that the PS07 runs substantially cooler than the Fractal Design Define Mini while being only fractionally louder.
Switch over to a more powerful graphics card and the PS07 starts really punching its weight. It's running consistently cooler than Fractal Design's Define Mini, while the Corsair Obsidian 350D offers better thermal performance but in a larger footprint.
And there's the proof. The PS07 is ever so slightly quieter than almost all of the competing cases.
The essential takeaway from the performance results here is that the PS07 becomes increasingly competitive the more you tax it. Fractal Design's Define Mini requires too much handholding to really shine, while the Corsair Obsidian 350D is by all rights not really an air cooling case and not designed with that in mind.