I know that in general for the "KYC" PC builds, that you don't give a whole lot of thought to the case aesthetics, but I was wondering if there is any value to considering an HTPC case for a console replacement PC, since the idea of the console it to play on the TV.
Somewhat, yes. Many of the HTPC cases are much smaller than a regular ATX or mATX case, and that reduces the amount of air flow and circulation you'll be getting [like how a laptop's and desktop's components may be the same, but because the laptop has a much smaller form factor, you'll get higher temperatures in your system without exceptional ventilation]. But if you're going for small, either a mITX or HTPC case is what you might be looking for.
The SILVERSTONE ML04B looks pretty nice for a HTPC [I like USB 3.0 with my cases]. Just make sure you have a mATX, mITX, or DTX motherboard.
I looked into horizontal format cases including 2U cases. I always liked the pizza box format that the ancient sparcstations used and I wanted to put it under the monitor.
The FD 605 is probably the best overall even though it is too tall and too wide. All the others are the wrong size, whack design, ugly, have chicken wire openings all over, and have ridiculous airflow schemes. Usually a combination of those.
The 2U cases are close to what I wanted but they aren't designed to let the PSU exhaust air out the bottom.
The vertical or cube formats are going to have significantly superior airflow. For an example of how to do a horizontal format better have a look at Valve's steam prototype.
Wait a couple weeks. We'll have a thing. It'll be cool.
I would get a core 1000 and put it sideways, it would look pretty nifty and the case is skinny enough to have the "console formfactor" as well as look better than the ugly (in my opinion) xbone.
I have a GD08
If your looking at something comparable to a console in terms of price/performance (aka entry level) then I would suggest looking at a kaveri system inside a mini-itx/micro-atx case with integrated PSU (which are quiet cheap), and a low-profile noctua cooler i.e. this, or this cooler. For additional expandability you could consider a larger more expensive case with a PSU and room capable of supporting a dedicated graphics card, i.e EVGA Hadron.
Kaveri running BF4 @[email protected]@about_30fps no-mantle, indoors:
I know this sounds generic but the new Bitfenix Prodigy M runs amazing. LinusTechTips even did it watercooled, I know thats not what your wanting out of it but i mean that its got great optimization for all your needs. Expandablility for this would be "easy like sunday morning and you could fit all the things you'd need. Secondly I highly agree about Kaveri, expecially for entry level! More so kaveri is kinda aimed toward that player demographic. Although you might want to think about a dedicated card rather than an APU. Then its just down to price, brand and performance you want. Just another add-on, if you do look into buying a dedicated GPU look at the Never Settle Bundle that comes with it, the more you spend the more games you get. For instance i got Tomb Raider, Bioshock and another game for my HIS 7850, roughly cost me $150 during release season. Hope this adaquately answered your question
I actually already have an mATX system with a Trinity APU built into an old case, which is what I am looking to upgrade. It is currently hooked up to my living room TV, and is a big reason that I don't care about the XBox One or PS4.