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Shuttle SH67H3 review

A space-saving gaming rig, but is the price for compactness too high?

Our Verdict

For

  • Size
  • Specs

Against

  • Price
  • Payoff

You know that moment where you're sitting at the tiny desk your landlord provided, enduring the sickly warm vibration of your PC pressing against your thigh, knees firmly clamped together, feet bound hopelessly in cables, thinking, 'I'm unhappy with this'?

Well, you could always go and get a bigger desk I suppose, but that's letting the space-hogging PC win. It'll never respect you after that moment. The other option is to buy a PC like this, the catchy SH67H3 from Shuttle.

The system we have here is built by Ambros, and though the component choices are entirely customisable online, this particular spec falls into the 'gaming PC' category.

Smaller form factors than the standard ATX carry a reputation for being inappropriate for serious gaming. Overheating and lack of room are common concerns and, while not entirely unfounded, they are a bit outdated in today's market.

We saw a Shuttle PC with an X58 motherboard capable of keeping the i7 990 EE chip at sensible temperatures only last issue, which should shush anyone hating on mini-ATX. Small things come in small packages, as the saying goes. Wait, what's the saying?

So here we have a DirectX 11 gaming PC with a Sandy Bridge processor that's roughly the size of a toaster. In the graphics card department, Ambros has appointed the GTX 460 head of operations. The advantages of this are twofold; it's a compact card compared to beefier Nvidia and all decent AMD GPUs, and offers great value in its Fermi architecture and clock speeds. It always did run a little hot, though.

Happily Shuttle is a bit clever at cooling solutions in tiny spaces, and we didn't see load temperatures exceed 60°C in either CPU or GPU readouts.

The GTX 480 has similar pros and cons, but to greater extremes – the GTX 460 is as good a card for this diminutive system as any, then. Don't even think about SLI arrays further down the line though; this isn't the system for multi-GPUs.

i5 with my little eye

The stock Core i5 2500K is no surprise either. The H67 chipset is on the one hand more appropriate for diddy systems as owners are unlikely to harbour overclocking ambitions and might well use the system for video editing, making use of the quick-sync hardware-accelerated video conversion.

To that end, however much ground the GTX 460 concedes to fresher cards in gaming, it's still super-powered for handling video and image manipulation tasks. For all its compactness though, the price is high, and value is low if you're looking at the SH67H3 as a gaming PC.

We have also reviewed the Chillblast Fusion Rocket, which sports an i5 2500K overclocked to 4.5 GHz and an AMD HD 6950. How this reviewer fawned over it. The price? £750. That's £115 cheaper than this mini PC, and the Chillblast pwns it in all performance categories.

Benchmarks

CPU performance

Cinebench R11.5 Points: Higher is better
Shuttle SH67H3 - 5.14
Fusion Rocket - 7.12

X264 v3.0 Frames per second: Higher is better
Shuttle SH67H3 - 27
Fusion Rocket - 36

DirectX 11 tessellation performance

Heaven 2.5 Frames per second: Higher is better
Shuttle SH67H3 - 18.21
Fusion Rocket - 21.7

DirectX 10 gaming performance

Just Cause 2 Frames per second: Higher is better
Shuttle SH67H3 - 26.45
Fusion Rocket - 39.69

This means the only ace this machine has up its sleeve is the size. If such a compact machine is an absolute must, consider it. Anyone with more space can look elsewhere.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeBarebone System
Number of External 5.25" Bays1
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelHD Graphics
Number of SATA Interfaces4
Number of Total Memory Slots4
Graphics Memory Capacity1.65 GB
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
Number of Processors Supported1
Number of 3.5" Bays2
Number of Total Expansion Slots3
Number of PCI Express x16 Slots1
eSATAYes
HDMIYes
DVIYes
eSATA/USB ComboYes
DisplayPortYes
Product FamilyXPC
Total Number of USB Ports11
Number of USB 3.0 Ports11
Memory StandardDDR3-1333/PC3-10600
ColourBlack
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Processor SocketSocket H2 LGA-1155
Brand NameShuttle
Form FactorSmall Form Factor
Processor SupportedCore i3, Core i5, Core i7, Celeron, Pentium
Controller TypeSerial ATA/600, Serial ATA/300
Maximum Memory32 GB
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS, 80 Plus, ENERGY STAR
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelH67 Express
Graphics Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
RAID SupportedYes
Ethernet TechnologyGigabit Ethernet
Number of Total Expansion Bays3
Height196 mm
Width208 mm
Depth323 mm
Operating System SupportedWindows 7
ManufacturerShuttle, Inc
Product ModelSH67H3
Product NameXPC SH67H3 Barebone System
Product LineXPC
Manufacturer Part NumberSH67H3
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.shuttle.com
Marketing InformationShuttle is proud to present to you the new XPC, SH67H3. This system is powered by the latest Intel® h67 Express chipset featuring all 2nd generation Intel® Core™ i7 / i5 / i3 processors to enhance better performance while being energy-efficient. The chassis continues the essence within the XPC family, with brushed on details and cutting-edge black aluminum design that copes with the XPC collection. The Sh67H3 accommodates DDR3, USB 3.0 and SATA3 6Gbps with expansion slots of two 3.5" drives and one 5.25 driver inside. Additional graphics performance is provided by the PCI-Ex16 and Mini-PCI-E ports which can be used for various applications such as WLAN module. Enjoy the high-definition playback of HD content with both HDMI and DVI connections. SH67H3 is designed to maximize your home entertainment experience. SH67H3 is equipped with the Integrated Cooling Engine 2(I.C.E. 2) heat pipe technology to prevent heat damage and deliver some of the most silent computers in the world. This technology traps CPU heat and through passive convection, passes that heat to conductors to the rear. SH67H3 brings you the most stable and most optimal use for life.
Package Contents
  • XPC SH67H3 Barebone System
  • Multilanguage XPC Installation Guide
  • 32/64bit Driver Disk
  • Pre-Installed Cables: 2x SATA
  • Power Cord
  • Screws
  • Heatsink Compound
Weight (Approximate)3.60 kg