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Reviewed by: Ed Lau [04.25.04]
Manufactured by: Soltek

Street Price: $255 at
$260 for mirror finish version

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Yeah, but how's her personality?

Okay, so she isn't the prettiest girl around but, of course, looks aren't everything. (HAHAHAHAH!!!) They could, by some ridiculous injustice in the world, be Jessica Simpson. Pretty but dumber than the dumbest rock on the planet - after that rock was dropped on it's head as a baby rock. While the Qbic is just a little above average looking, it has more brains than Jessica. While she tries to figure out the difference between tuna and chicken, let's look at the innards of this SFF.

Now I mentioned before that the Qbic has enough room for two 5.25" drives while maintaining a svelte physique so it really came to no surprise that the inner quarters are as cramped as a Mini Cooper. However, while you have little room to manuver, the Qbic makes no compromises in features.

Sporting a 865G chipset with all the usual bells and whistles like 8x AGP, 800FSB and eight USB 2.0 ports. What  surprised me is the inclusion of more "luxury" features like a beefy 250W power supply (which until just recently was as good as it gets for small PSU's), three IEEE1394 Firewire ports and serial ATA support. Like most SFFs, card expansion is limited to the AGP slot and a single PCI so sound (a 5.1 audio solution) and ethernet are built into the motherboard. Audio connections (including a surprising appearance by a digital TOSlink connection), USB 2.0 and Firewire are all front mounted, with additional ports in the rear. Not bad for a breadbox.

Again, there's almost zero room to move around inside the case. Access to the IDE ports, RAM slot, etc requires that you  remove the cage that holds all the drives. However, I'm happy to report that the power supply gives enough of a clearance to accomodate reasonably sized cooling solutions. The Intel stock cooler fits perfectly.

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