Episode 95 Tech Talk- Time to build a compact gaming PC?

In this week’s episode, I shared that two announced products have once again perked my interest in finally building a gaming consolesque PC. The first announcement to make me consider the leap was the A4-SFX tower from Dan cases and the second was Nvidia’s announcement of the GTX 1070 graphics card.


Currently being offered on Kickstarter, the A4-SFX is a tower case designed to be the smallest case possible while still managing to house higher end motherboards and GPUs.

A number of creative ideas were needed to devise the case. Using a PCIe extender allowed for the most prominent design feature of this case, which is the location of the GPU behind the motherboard. The A4-SFX will come with the highest quality PCIe extender on the market, made by 3M, which allows for PCIe Gen3 and Gen4 support.

The case allows for easy mounting of either SFX or SFX-L power supplies. The PSU is located in the front of the chassis.

Depending on the size of the PSU, up to two 2.5” HDDs or SSDs can be mounted in the drive bay. The drive bay could potentially be mounted with rubber spacers to reduce vibration. A third drive can be mounted behind the front cover.

Every component is able to cool itself by getting fresh air directly from the outside. Hot air in the case will move to the top and then outside without the need of an extra fan. This principle works perfectly and results in an amazing cooling efficiency compared to other cases.


The form factor of this tower is simple, elegant, and seems to be engineered well to hold high quality components while venting heat safely. The price is a bit daunting at almost $300 after shipping..

Speaking of price, the second thing to get me very excited about the possibility of building a gaming PC is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070


Although it is the little brother to the powerhouse 1080, at almost half the price ($379), the 1070 delivers better performance than the mighty Titan X thanks to all new Pascal GPU architecture, an 8GB GDDR5 frame buffer, and a host of other improvements over the 900 level GeForce cards.

This card feels like the jump forward I’ve been waiting for, and I feel like if I bought this card, my PC would be current for several years.

What about you? Do you already have a gaming PC, or are you like me and have yet to make the leap? Do either of these announced products make you want to take the plunge?


1 thought on “Episode 95 Tech Talk- Time to build a compact gaming PC?

  1. This year’s round of GPUs from both Nvidia and Radeon are very exciting because of the shrink from 28nm down to 14nm dies. This leads to much better performance per watt, and as most know the R9 390X and GTX 980Ti were both power hungry cards, so getting the performance of greater than a Titan X for under $400 is amazing when you think about it.

    Also, I’d cautiously recommend the GTX 1070 over the 1080 at this time because although the 1080 features DDR5X memory (twice as fast on paper), it’s a very new technology and not everything will take advantage of it. In ideal cases, it’ll blow the 1070 out of the water, but in practice this may not be true. My best guess is that by 2017’s GTX 1100 series, all the kinks of DDR5X should be worked out. You know, early adopter stuff and all that 🙂

    Thanks for sharing this!

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