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Shuttle XPC SG33G50 Intel G33 Express SFF PC Review
Shuttle XPC SG33G50 Intel G33 Express SFF PC Review - PCSTATS
In this review, PCSTATS will be testing out Shuttle's glossy-black XPC SG33G50 small formfactor barebones PC. Like all barebones computers, the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 includes the case, motherboard, CPU heatsink and powersupply.
 82% Rating:   
Filed under: Computer / SFF PCs Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Shuttle Dec 07 2007   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Computer / SFF PCs > Shuttle XPC Shuttle SG33G50

When it comes to Small Form Factor PCs, there are few brands able to keep up with Shuttle. Shuttle's toaster-sized barebones computers continue to be successful because the company delivers fresh technology in a quality package. On the inside, Shuttle SFF PCs are quiet in operation, have an amazing ease of assembly, other from a consumer perspective are aggressively priced.

Shuttle shines in its support too. At the very least Shuttle has a phone number on its support website that you can call if you have problems. Other manufacturers often keep to email or forums correspondence which is useless when your computer is down. For users, the nicest aspect of a Shuttle SFF PC is its simplicity. I would almost go so far as to borrow a very famous slogan and say "It's a Shuttle", were it not for the army of lawyers at Sony who patrol for such infractions.

In this review, PCSTATS will be testing out Shuttle's glossy-black XPC SG33G50 small formfactor barebones PC. Like all barebones computers, the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 includes the case, motherboard, CPU heatsink and powersupply. You provide an Intel Core 2 Duo/Quad processor, the DDR2 memory, a SATA hard drive and optical drive. Installation is straight forward and well documented, so you can be up and computing in less than 30 minutes.

As if it needs to be said, Intel's socket 775 Core 2 Duo and Core 2 Quad processors are the only processors on the market that really matter right now. The previous Shuttle SFF PC PCSTATS tested was an excellent Athlon64 platform, but the Core 2 Duo has left AMD in a bit of a tale spin lately. Anyway, Shuttle's XPC SG33G50 and is the new kid on the block and it's based on the Intel G33 Express Northbridge and ICH9DH Southbridge chipsets. In short, that means it has an integrated Intel GMA3100 video and comes with the usual collection of features; Gigabit networking, IEEE 1394a Firewire, 7.1 channel High Definition Azalia sound and lots of USB2.0 ports.

Shuttle XPC SG33G50S mall Form Factor PC


Quick Installation Guide, Driver CD, floppy Cable, screws, power cord, HDMI-to-DVI adaptor, heatsink.

More importantly, the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 has a dedicated HDMI video jack and two eSATA ports for external storage devices. These are incredibly handy for, say, a pair of 500GB external hard drives full of your movies and music. Video outputs are split between the analog video jack and the HDMI jack which doubles as a DVI monitor connector with a special HDMI-to-DVI adaptor.

Internally there isn't much in the way of expansion. There are just a few USB headers, a 32 bit PCI slot and one PCI Express x16 slot for a stand alone videocard. The XPC SG33G50 accomodates a maximum of 4GB of DDR2-800 memory in its two slots, and supports Intel socket 775 processors running on a 800/1066/1333MHz FSB. The 250W power supply is not upgradable, but sufficient for for Intel's latest and greatest CPUs and a good single-slot PCI Express x16 videocard. The XPC SG33G50 chassis accomodates one 5.25" and two 3.5" drives, nothing more. There are three SATA channels, one IDE connector (one IDE/SATA are occupied by default) and one floppy.

Like what you see? The Shuttle XPC SG33G50 can be yours for about $333 CDN ($333 US, £165 GBP). A typical price point for most barebones Small Formfactor computers in this class.

Room to Grow?

As we've mentioned, inside the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 there is room enough for one 3.5" hard drive and a 3.5" FDD and an 5.25" optical drive. That's not much in the way of expansion, so plan on a larger-than-necessary hard drive from the start. The barebones computer comes with a 250W power supply with Active Power Factor Correction. A combination case and processor heatsink is fitted with noise reducing rubber grommets and a 92mm PWM fan. A proprietory heatpipe heatsink is included with the barebones kit, and the CPU mounting holes are such that only the manufacturer supplied thermal solution can be used.

One 5.25" and 3.5" bay are accessible from the outside, hidden behind flush bezel panels which fold down. Front panel connectors consist of a collection of audio (mic in, line out), USB2.0 and mini-Firewire jacks. These are hidde from view when not in use.

From Barebones to Operation

The shiny black Shuttle XPC SG33G50 Small Form Factor PC measures 295 x 180 x 195 mm in size, and is weighs about 8lbs. The chassis and cover are made of aluminum, the front bezel is glossy black plastic. The three control buttons on the front of the computer are optical drive eject, power and some indicator LEDs, the rest of the exterior is refreshing uncluttered.

Inside the system is a 250W A-PFC power supply, which might sound a little restricting from the get-go, but it has plenty of power to go around. PCSTATS tested the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 with an Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 processor and a 150GB WD Raptor and did not encounter any power related issues.

The power supply supports A-PFC which means there is no need for a 115/230V input voltage selector switch, and less energy will be wasted. There are just enough power connectors to accommodate the amount of drives and devices that are installed. As a result, cable clutter is done away with.

To keep vibrations and noise down to a minimum when the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 is running along, the chassis is equipped with four soft rubber feet on the bottom. When optical drives spin up there are occasionally vibrations transmitted to the rest of the computer, and potentially to the desk or table top below. This can cause noise, if not become rather distracting over item. The rubberized feet of the XPC SG33G50 do a great job of reducing vibration transmission from this SFF computer its surroundings. The entire PC stands evenly on soft rubber feet.

Overall the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 Small Formfactor barebones PC is a visual treat, and a nice change from bulky full sized computers that look like soviet era apartment blocks. Small form factor PCs are compact, which is great for the home or office when you have just a small corner to tuck a PC into and don't want all the noise of a full size PC.

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Contents of Article: Shuttle XPC Shuttle SG33G50
 Pg 1.  — Shuttle XPC SG33G50 Intel G33 Express SFF PC Review
 Pg 2.  Bring your own Accessories
 Pg 3.  The External Features
 Pg 4.  Inside the Shuttle XPC SG33G50
 Pg 5.  Closer look at the SFF PC
 Pg 6.  Shuttle XPC Gallery
 Pg 7.  Overclocking the Shuttle XPC SG33G50 / BIOS
 Pg 8.  Prelude to Benchmarks and Test Specs
 Pg 9.  SFF PC Benchmarks: SYSmark 2007 Preview, SiSoft Sandra XIb
 Pg 10.  SFF PC Benchmarks: PCMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 11.  SFF PC Benchmarks: Doom 3, FEAR
 Pg 12.  It's a nice SFF PC, that much is for sure

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