Silverstone Grandia GD10 – Test and Review

Grandia GD10 was delivered to me in the similarly sized, colored carton box as Grandia GD09 – read the previous test and review HERE. In terms of shipping, the GD10 is no different than the GD09 as the cases are just half a kilo apart from their respective weight ratios. Packaging box is following the same design also – blackish exterior with big letters for the model itself and smaller sized font, used for the technical specifications. Of course, the product picture is a mandatory presence and there is a frontal shot of the GD10 looking very good and giving a brief inspection of the clean design that the case actually offers.

Going on a tour around the packaging of GD10, the potential customer would be extensively informed about the product inside and its features or capabilities.

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Probably due to shipping issues the unit that I received had one of the sides damaged, the carton looked punctured and I really hoped that this “flesh wound” hadn’t damaged any of the sides of the case.

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After seeing the damage done to the carton I hurried up to check for actual damage on the case and opened the box. One of the covers had a label stating that this is a unique product and before proceeding it is best to first read the manual, not going ahead and doing something wrong. Also I took a glimpse at the packaged case, that was wrapped with transparent nylon bag and on the sides a hard foam was present. For a case this size and weight I can agree that hard foam is enough for protection. I proceeded forward with the unpacking and checked the internal damage.

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Fortunately the dent on the carton outside was just not enough to completely pierce through it and the case’s front panel was actually intact, also props to the thick layer of foam, doing its job very well.

Silverstone Grandia GD10 EXTERIOR

And here it is – Silverstone Grandia GD10 case – let’s have a quick exterior look around the case and examine it. Now is the time to share the dimensions of this case and its weight – 442mm (W) x 171mm (H) x 362mm (D) and 4.8 kg. Silverstone also measures the GD10 in liters of space – 27.4 liters.

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First things first – the streamlined, entirely black finished, clean and simple look of the case is completed mostly due the actual aluminum front panel door, not a plastic imitation look-a-like. The front of the case is strikingly flat and the small logo on the left top corner “Silverstone” is the reminder of who made the design of this case. Under the logo are located the front panel LED lights such as the power and HDD activity light. In a typical Silverstone fashion the lights are blue, corresponding with the snowflake in the company’s logo.

Another thing that catches my attention are the chromed-like feet of GD10 – they do fir the case’s design pattern and add a luxurious look. Continuing forward with examination of this SFF case… top view – here you can see the opening for hot exhaust air from your GPU. Silverstone do recommend to use video cards with turbine or what we usually call them – reference coolers, due to the fact that there is no hot air staying inside the case when load is applied.

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As similar as it may look to the GD09, GD10 actually brings a new visual experience. The flat design of the front is responsible for a nicer overall exterior representation, even when the case is observed at an angle.

Silverstone GD10 right/rear Silverstone GD10 from the left
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Silverstone GD10 – front panel door lock Silverstone GD10 bottom view
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Silverstone has designed a lockable front panel door, although I find it not completely flawless – the actual lock, where the key goes is easily rotated with a finger. Maybe a spring mechanism might have done the job a bit better, because I do not see how secure this door is. Hopefully, if there is a future revision of the case this issue will be corrected in a positive way.

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On the bottom you can spot the difference between the front and rear feet of this case, which is okay in terms of usability and the rear feet are made with a softer rubber and the case sits firmly on the desk or shelf.

That pretty much wraps things up for the exterior portion of GD10 and now is the time to inspect the interior.

Silverstone Grandia GD10 Interior

In order to get access to the interior I need to remove the top panel of the case, which is held into place by two standard phillips-head short screws. Top panel is located on rails and is pulled away from the case, a convenient way to get to the interior space.

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Movement was smooth enough, although the handle that is located on the panel is not so comfy and it is hard to get a good grip of the panel itself. Anyways, somehow I managed to get it open and had a look inside of GD10 – immediately I noticed that the layout is exactly the same as GD09’s.

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Now is the time to say that GD10’s interior could house CPU coolers with maximum height of 138 mm, GPU’s up to 300 mm in length and PSU’s that are no more than 220 mm. Silverstone do recommend using a PSU with 180 mm length for easier installation and operation when building a PC in this FULL-TX HTPC case. Speaking of ATX specifications, GD10 is able to fit SSI-CEB, ATX and  Micro-ATX motherboards in its belly and 7+1 are the expansion slots that you can utilize.

The transparent nylon bag contained all the included accessories that come with GD10:

  • 4 x non-reusable zip ties
  • 1 x key for the lock on the front panel
  • 4 x rubber pads for vibration absorption
  • 1 x bracket for HDD mount
  • Many screws and bolts

The user manual is extensive in its contains and gives a very good picture of how everything is supposed to be installed inside GD10. Motherboard stand-off are preinstalled for the user, so one hassle less for the future PC build. The included bolts and screws are plenty and will satisfy the need of every user. Personally, I would’ve liked to see them with black finish to complement the whole visual experience of the case itself.

Silverstone GD10 accessories bag Silverstone GD10 included manual and parts
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Now that I am done with the interior inspection I, in our standard DVTests fashion, will disassemble GD10 and check out its body structure, of course later on it will be put back together, accompanied by thorough information of how everything fits into place. Let’s proceed with the disassembly process…

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Well, it didn’t take much time to remove all of the parts from GD10, the case is a breeze to operate with, due to its light weight and smaller dimensions. What I can say about the chassis is that it is quite stiff and sturdy almost everywhere and there is no complaint made here. The rugged bottom of the case is responsible for the additional support and GD10 will not bend even when heavier components are installed – chassis is constructed from 0.8mm steel plates, allowing the rigidity the case has.

Silverstone GD10 chassis Silverstone GD10 bottom supports
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The case has enough room interior-wise so that you can build a PC inside in no time, without too much hassle. After I covered the chassis factory and execution, I arranged the parts that I removed and will put them back together one by one.

There are the parts that GD10 consists of:

  • 1 x GD10 chassis
  • 1 x Top panel
  • 1 xFront panel and aluminium door
  • 3 x dust filters
  • 3 x 120 mm fans
  • 1 x HDD/SSD multi purpose bracket
  • 1 x support bar
  • Front panel I/O cables
  • Bolts and screws

Now comes the time when I start to assemble the case back together and explain the process, trying to be as informative as possible.

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 The first thing to go back to its place is the front panel that has all the front I/O cables on it attached to a small PCB that is also removable via two small screws. The panel itself is held to the body of GD10 via six screws with different length.

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Behind the front aluminium door you can find the Power button, Reset button and the dedicated 5.25″ ODD bay. Above the buttons are located the usual USB 3.0 ports, which are two in this case and between them you have the standard HD audio and Microphone 3.5 mm jacks. Some users may find it inconvenient that all the communication ports are located behind the front door.

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Even to power on the system you have to open the door, or if you connect your USB stick there is no chance to close it. However, the purpose of this case is to be located on a furniture where its usage is mostly in a LAN network with streaming options. You may not be so often disturbed by the front panel door.

Next part of the assembly process is a very important one – the cooling part and the cooling setup used for GD10.

Silverstone Grandia GD10 COOLING

This HTPC case comes with three fans preinstalled out of the factory to assist with the cooling needs of the components inside. All the fans are 120 mm Silverstone fans with standard frame sizes of 120 x 120 x 25 mm, featuring a black plastic frame with black propeller blades. The propellers consist of 9 blades with curved design and the fans are rated at 12 volts maximum operating voltage. Airflow they produce isn’t stated at the technical specifications, although these fans rotate at a silent 900 RPM range. Silverstone has mentioned that the noise level of each fan is around the 18 dBA mark, so I have to expect quiet operation even at maximum RPM.

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Silverstone Grandia GD10 can also be fitted with dual 80 mm fans, right next to the PCI-e slots to help with some additional cooling – that is, of course, if you plan to cool hotter hardware components.

Silverstone GD10 – internal look Silverstone GD10 – side fans
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Okay, let’s install the fans to their corresponding mounts and continue with the assembly process. It is good to see that the company provided the case with ample cooling out of the box, although I want to see those 3-pin fan power cables black sleeved or at least flat.

Now that the fans are installed I proceed to the next good thing about the case – its dust filter protection. Having three intake fans definitely means that there’ll be dust built-up in the case sooner or later, so that is why the snowflake logo company provided dust filters for each of the intakes.

Silverstone GD10 – dual dust filter Silverstone GD10 – dust filter in place
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The first dust filter is a bigger one and is meant to protect both 120mm fans on the right side of the case. Filter is just clipped into place with plastic brackets and installation process is extremely easy. Also it is very hassle-free when you decide to clean the dust filter – just push it in the right direction and then pull away from the case.

Silverstone GD10 – PSU + fan dust filter Silverstone GD10 – installed
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On the other side of the case the dust filters are separated, as one is dedicated for the PSU and the other is meant to protect the intake fan. Installation again is pretty easy, removal process is accomplished just by pulling the filter away from the case.

What I can say about the quality of these filters is that the mesh used is dense, the plastic is flexible, but away from braking easily. My concern is about the plastic clips that filters rely on, after a certain amount of installing/removing I think that some of the clips might break. Magnet dust filters is a preferred method for attaching to a case, but that would have also raised the price tag.

Only thing left to cover in this assembly is the support bar along with the multi-purpose HDD bracket. The multi-purpose bracket is completely the same as in the GD09, Its purpose is to mount either two 3.5″ drives (one side is compatible with 2.5”) or one 2.5” drive or  5.25″ ODD (compatible with one 3.5” or two 2.5” drives).

Silverstone GD10 – bar and HDD bracket Silverstone GD10 – HDD bracket bottom view
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Silverstone GD10 – HDD bracket closer look Silverstone GD10 – SSD into place (bottom mount)
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The bracket is made from thick steel and has a very nice black finish, аlong with dampening foam material to prevent any vibrations passing to the chassis. I installed the SSD on the bottom portion of the bracket, thus achieving a better cooling for the storage drive as you’ll see from the photos below. The multi-purpose bracket can only be installed when the support bar is also installed, because it acts as a support for it as well.

Silverstone GD10 – support bar Silverstone GD10 – HDD bracket installed
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Support bar is fitted into place with two short screws only, but it is responsible for most of the rigidity of the case. With that said the assembly process is completed, exterior and interior inspection has passed and it’s time to install my test rig inside GD10 and see what I can get from the temperature readings.

Silverstone GD10 TESTS

For the testing I will use an Intel based system with Z87 chipset motherboard.

Intel Z87 Test system

  • CPU: Intel i5-4670K
  1. At standard frequency 3.4 GHz
  • Motherboard: AsRock Fatal1ty Killer Z87
  • Video card: MSI AMD R9 280X GAMING 3G
  • Memory: A-Data XPG 8 GB Dual channel, 1600 MHz
  • Solid State Drive: Intel 530 Series, 120 GB
  • Hard drive: Western Digital 640 GB Black Series
  • Case: Silverstone Grandia GD10
  • Power supply:  Corsair RM750 W, Fully Modular
  • Cooler: Box Intel cooler
  • Thermal paste: Noctua NT-H1

Box cooler is used due to the limited height of CPU coolers that GD10 can fit, I don’t have a cooler that could fit inside the 138 mm restrictions.

The test was conducted in a closed system with:

  • 3 x 120mm Silverstone fans, rotating at their maximum RPM range of about 900-1000 revolutions per minute.
  • Room temperature ot about 25 degrees Celsius.

And here I want to describe my testing method.

I will install my test rig inside the case and do CPU and VGA stress tests using AIDA64 stability test for about 10 minutes with these settings:

  • CPU: Intel i5-4670K – running at stock voltage and frequency, because after all this case is not enthusiast grade in terms of cooling, but rather an HTPC system where stress levels that I am about to perform are highly unlikely.
  • MSI AMD R9 280X GAMING 3G – running at stock voltage and auto speed control of the fans.

Before proceeding with the tests I had to install my test rig inside which was a relatively easy job to do. In order to install any component inside GD10, apart from a PSU, you have to remove completely the support bar and the HDD bracket to get access to the interior. As I mentioned earlier the MB stand offs are pre-installed, which is always handy. The interior is spacious enough to provide you with suitable room to work with without getting frustrated after the first 5 minutes. As my PSU is quite large it actually did a perfect fit right next to the intake fan with a slight push. Cables from the PSU don’t have much places to go, although there are some zip tie mounts that could be utilized for a tidier build.

Here’s the view I got when all of the components were installed in Silverstone GD10:

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The build looks tidy enough for proper cooling and it might seem that PSU cables are cluttered a bit, but this is done without using any zip ties, so expect a more clear path for airflow if you take your time and do a tidy job with the cables.

Here are the results from the testing procedure with all intake fans running on maximum RPM:

Silverstone GD10 – Load test Silverstone GD10 – Cooled down, Idle
GD10 load temps GD10 idle

 

After I ran the stress test I left the case to cool down for 15-20 minutes period, and I was surprised by the good job these three fans do – all of the components were operating in their normal temperature levels.

SilverStone GRANDIA GD10 CONCLUSIONS:

After I spent several hours disassembling, assembling, reviewing and later testing the case, I believe it is time to express my thoughts regarding the product.

1. Silverstone GD10 performance – Considering the case is not oriented at the segment where serious cooling is required  I believe that it does quite a decent job for the cooling part. The hot processor and also the hot GPU do produce large amount of heat that circulates inside the case, but let’s be honest – there is no way that you can stress the case in real world scenario situation when, for example, watching a Blu-Ray movie and the case is sitting on your cabinet. Extreme conditions don’t go hand in hand with GD10 and they are not supposed to as the case will do its purposed job absolutely brilliantly. Building with GD10 was pretty much hassle-free, although you have to follow a strict order when installing the components to avoid any issues.

This case is a lovely addition to your living room cabinet, under the big TV, connected to your streaming source.

2. Silverstone GD10 appearance – The big selling feature of GD10 is of course the flat front panel and clean aesthetics overall. What I cannot comprehend is why the locking mechanism is place on the center front, when it could be place on the side to give even more pleasing looks, and what is more concerning is that the locking part doesn’t actually work or protect anything. Let’s say you plug a USB drive – unless it is 10 mm in length there is no possible way of closing the front door, let alone locking it. In my opinion the front panel might have looked somewhat better if made without the lock. On the sides of the case things are on the other end – dust filters do have a grill design to them and do give a + 1 point to the look of the case. Entire case is black and the unobtrusive Silverstone snowflake logo do give GD10 a sleek and nice, pleasing to the viewer look.

2. Silverstone GD10 noise level – One word – Silent! Gd10 surprised me with its silent operation, even though three 120mm fans were rotating at 1000 RPM range and even under load I could barely hear the GPU or the Box cooler. The case was situated on my desk for 2 days, 300-400mm away from my ears and not for one minute did it distract me. At first I thought that due to the density of the dust filters I might experience some whining noises, but that was not the case. I am really impressed with the silent operation this case offers and I believe that is perfect noise ratio for a case meant to be installed on a cabinet. Believe me – you will not hear a thing from GD10.

Well done, Silverstone!

I think SilverStone Grandia GD10 deserves the following reward:

Best-Visual-silence

Official price (MSRP): Silverstone Grandia GD10 – 105 USD (ex.VAT)

Warranty: 24 months

Special thanks to Silverstone for providing us with a test sample.

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Silverstone Grandia GD10 – Test and Review
8.8 Total Score
This case is a lovely addition to your living room cabinet, under the big TV, connected to your streaming source.

Design
9
Build Quality
8.5
Performance
9
Noise Dampening
9
User Rating: 4.7 (1 votes)

Nikola Milanov is reviewer and newsman at DVTests and has more than 6 years of experience in telecommunications. I'm really enthusiastic about the website and its development by sharing a user's point of view and experience with the products we test. We are honest and objective in all of the articles, the products get tested and reviewed thoroughly with no exception! Feel free to ask any questions in the comment section or use the emails in About us page!
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