Streacom cases are expensive. There’s no getting around it. But with heavy-gauge aluminium on all surfaces plus bespoke mounting systems and a true fanless design robust enough to handle an overclocked i5 6600K, at least the big dollars make sense. And if you need your PC to be a beautiful object, we think the cost is worth it. Just.
The DB4 isn’t for everyone. It’s neither big enough to take the full range of components on the market right now, nor small enough to disappear into minimalist home or office interior designs. But it does strike a good balance between compact elegance and do-anything flexibility.
The DB4 uses Streacom’s heatpipe system to pipe waste heat to the outside skin of the case, which acts as the heatsink.
The DB4 can’t take a full ATX motherboard or an internal optical drive. It’s mini-ITX only. But it can take five full-size SATA 3.5-inch hard drives, or a full dozen 2.5-inch drives. So if you want a server that actually looks like what Hollywood thinks a server will look like in the year 2100, the DB4 is an ideal choice.
It’s also a good choice if you want a reasonably powerful PC that doesn’t take up too much space and won’t roar fan-noise in your ear. All the cables exit the bottom of the case, and the motherboard’s backplate is down there too. One corner of the built-in stand has a tiny on/off glyph etched on it so you know where the power button is, but apart from this the DB4 is completely blank.
Because it’s a fanless case, this can make it slightly fiddly to set up the PC or diagnose boot problems since there are no lights, no window to look through, and no speaker. But that’s a small price to pay for otherwise top-class build quality.
Really what the DB4 represents is a way to make your PC more than just a tower jammed full of bits. Why should high-end AV get all the beautiful finishes and meticulous noise isolation?
One more thing: The DB4 requires use of one of Streacom’s custom PSUs. The only one we’d recommend is the ZeroFlex 240 which costs $210. So really the DB4 is a $650 investment. Is that a price you’re willing to pay for aesthetic excellence?