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Shuttle SH61R4 review

Chris Finnamore
12 Oct 2011
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
222
inc VAT

A good Sandy Bridge barebones, but Shuttle's SH67H3 is better value

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The Shuttle SH67H3 was the first Intel LGA1155 barebones we'd seen. Its HDMI video and optical S/PDIF outputs made it suitable for building a media centre PC with an Intel Sandy Bridge processor, and its twin drive bays and RAID support meant you could back up your media files easily.

Shuttle SH61R4

This SH61R4 is a slightly cheaper version, with a similar specification but some subtle changes that make it more suitable as a general-purpose home or office PC. Gone are the HDMI and S/PDIF ports, but you do get both DVI-I and DVI-D ports, so you can connect two DVI monitors, or one DVI and one VGA monitor, and run them from the Sandy Bridge processor's integrated graphics. There's also no RAID support, and while the SD67H3 had two USB3 ports on the front and rear, the SH61R4 only has rear-mounted USB3 and makes do with USB on the front.

Shuttle SH61R4 ports

The SH61R4 has room for an optical drive and two hard disks, and is easy to put together - the drive tray comes out easily to make it simple to screw in your storage, and the SATA cables are routed neatly around the top of the case. The barebones' motherboard is a custom design, but it is possible to fit a replacement Mini-ITX Intel model - the SH61R4's processor cooler has standard LGA1155 mounting feet. This essentially turns the barebones into a very expensive case, but it's useful to have the option of an upgrade in the future.

There are only two RAM slots, compared to the four in the SH67H3, so you're limited to 8GB rather than 16GB RAM - most people shouldn't have a problem with this, though. If you find the limited graphics performance of a Sandy Bridge chip isn't enough, you can fit a double-slot PCI Express graphics card, and the case is long enough for any ATI or Nvidia cards currently available. However, you'll lose the single PCI Express x1 expansion slot if you do this, and the case only comes with a single six-pin PCI Express power connector. You could use a Molex-to-PCI Express power adaptor, but as the power supply is only rated at 250W (compared to 300W in the SH67H3) you won’t be able to use particularly powerful cards such as the AMD Radeon HD 6950.

Shuttle SH61R4 interior

When fitted with our reference Intel Core i5-2500K processor and 4GB RAM, the SH61R4 system managed 95 overall in our benchmarks - five points fewer than our reference PC, which uses the same processor; Shuttle's motherboard seems to be slowing the system down slightly, but it's not a huge performance hit. The SH61R4 is a competent barebones, but it suffers in comparison to the SH67H3, which is only slightly more expensive, has a more powerful power supply, front-mounted USB3 ports and an optical S/PDIF output, and can be used with two DVI monitors with a £10 HDMI to DVI adaptor.

Details

Price£222
Rating***
Processor socketLGA1155
Processor support2nd generation Intel Core i3, i5, i7
Processor heatsink suppliedyes
Memory slots2
Supported memory typeDDR3 1333
Memory8GB
Dual-channel supportyes
Form factorcustom/Mini-ITX
Chipset north bridgeIntel H61
Chipset south bridgeIntel H61
Passively-cooled north bridgeyes
Graphics Processornone
Graphics Memory0MB
Graphics memory typeN/A

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear)2/8
Firewire ports (front/rear)0/0
Legacy portsnone
Graphics/video portsDVI-I, DVI-D
Other portsnone

Internal Expansion

Size190x215x325mm
PCI slots0
PCI-E x1 slots1
PCI-E x4 slots0
PCI-E x16 slots1
Dual 3D architecturenone
IDE ports0
Serial ATA ports4
RAID drivesN/A
Floppy ports0
3.5in drive bays2
5.25in drive bays1
Other baysnone

Features

Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking supportnone
SoundIDT92HD89C
Sound outputs5.1 line out, headphone, microphone
Speaker configuration5.1
Supported memory cardsnone
Power supply wattage250W
Cables included3x SATA, 4x SATA power, 2x Molex power, 1x PCI Express power
Power consumption standby2W
Power consumption idle32W
Power consumption active101W

Buying Information

Price£222
Supplierhttp://www.morecomputers.com
Detailsuk.shuttle.com

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