Maingear Potenza SS: A Cool, Quiet, SFF Gaming PC - HotHardware

Maingear Potenza SS: A Cool, Quiet, SFF Gaming PC

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Futuremark is a familiar name in the computer hardware industry, thanks to its popular PCMark and 3DMark benchmarking suites. We put Maingear's Potenza through both tests and compared the scores to results from similar systems we’ve recently reviewed. We also ran the system through the Fire Strike test in Futuremark’s updated 3DMark benchmark suite.

PCMark 7
Simulated Application Performance

Many of the benchmarks here focus on PC games and graphics, which is what you’d expect in a review of a system designed for gaming and entertainment. But you’ll also likely use your Maingear Potenza for other tasks, as well, and that’s where PCMark 7 can give you a sense of the system’s capabilities. It runs multi-threaded tests that simulate office tasks and general usage, then gives the system a score.



The Potenza's PCMark 7 score puts the computer right about where we would expect to see it: between the iBuypower Revolt (which boasts an Intel Core i7 3770K CPU and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 graphics card) and the Digital Storm Bolt (which has a Core i5 3570K CPU and a GeForce 660 Ti). The computer is clearly competent to handle day-to-day office tasks and Web browsing.

Futuremark 3DMark 11
Simulated Gaming Performance

Futuremark’s 3DMark 11 is a well-respected gaming test suite. Like PCMark 7, this benchmark runs the system through a battery of tests and provides a score for comparison. But here, the tests are generally more graphics-oriented.



Although 3DMark 11 has been around for a while, it's a good tool for spotting serious gaming capabilities. The GTX 660 is a solid card, and it shows here. In fact, the Potenza's score is a little better here than you might expect from this configuration.

Futuremark 3DMark Fire Strike
Simulated Gaming Performance

We also put the Potenza through Futuremark’s new 3DMark Fire Strike test, which has Normal and Extreme modes. Because Extreme mode is geared towards systems that have multiple graphics cards in CrossFire or SLI configurations, we opted for Normal mode, which runs at 1920 x 1080. As a result, we don’t have comparison data at the moment, but our data pool will grow quickly as we run more review systems through this test.






There are two sets of numbers to look for with the Fire Strike results. The first is the score, which is broken into an overall score and a separate graphics score. The other provides a breakdown of the system's performance in the individual tests that were run. Again, there isn't much to say about the Potenza's scores in this benchmark, other than to say it is a good result, so we'll dig into some of the other tests for this gaming PC.

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The water line that is forced into the RAM stick (tweaking it) looks hokey to me.

I like the case though.

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I have had a Maingear Potenza for almost a year (overclocked 3770K and Nvidoa 680 GPU with 256 GB SSD and 2TB Hard Drive). I have been extremely happy with both the computer and the company. At maingear, the person who provides your customer support is the person that built your computer. This is a good practice as the builders know they will need to support the machines they build.

The computer is indeed very cool, very quiet and very fast. What more coudl you ask for in a gaming pc?

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I thought a titan would be too long to fit in this case but obviously I'm mistaken. But anyways this is a pretty sweet looking SFF PC.

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Oh yes the Maingear Potenza may I add my 2 cents as to why this is an awesome case to go with? First off the footprint is the smallest of any sff computer you can buy, Yes Any!!! I do not like the shoe box cases, in reality their footprint is as much as a medium size tower I am talking to you Sg07, Sgo8, Fragbox, prodigy and many others including Lian Li. Now here is how to build the ultimate Potenza. Take the cabling off of the front light, then you can remove all 3 sides completely by hand easily no screws and see the beautiful hardware you have and of course cleaning is a breeze with compressed air or blower. Remove the hard drive cage and the optical drive cage and you have a simple case my friends. One SSd will attach to the side of the case. This case will be the most awesome if you get a logitech wireless keyboard and mouse. My plan is to place it behind my 30 inch monitor, people will assume I have an All In one since it will be out of sight and quiet. Since I need to bring this to S America I have also found a Pelican case to transport it in that is Carry on Size!! Yes Carry on Size case which makes this the only Sff Case that you can carry on with a Water Proof durable Case. Yes you can carry on others by hand in a duffel bag or in your hands but remember these things weigh 25lbs or more would it not be nice to have a wheeled lockable case? Of course it would be Pelican 1510 Carry On Case. Now then one last cool thing Maingear will paint this baby for 49 bucs!! I currently own a m18x laptop, if the Potenza had been on my radar back when I bought it I would of saved a bundle going with it instead. I have done a ton of research on Sff cases and to me The Silverston FT-03 mini case that Maingear uses checks all the right boxes. Quality, uniqueness, design, smallest footprint and customization via Maingear!

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That is pretty awesome. Im sure it would make a great gaming PC but also could do alot of other things too. While I think id always have to have a full case just so I can move stuff in and out and not worry about size I do like what companies are doing for the small form factor PC for everyday consumers that want to buy something just just play games on it and this looks to be a very nice option for those people.

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