- Specifications and Packaging
- External Impressions Part 1
- External Impressions Part 2
- Internal Impressions Part 1
- Internal Impressions Part 2
- Installation experience and Conclusion
You need to first remove the top panel so that you can remove the front panel. The secure mechanism for top and front bezel is a bit different so if you intend to remove the front panel for any reason, you’ll need to remove the top panel first. I guess that explains why all the front 5.25″ bays can be removed easily, should you wish to do so. There are 2 handles. One is on the rear- hidden away under the top panel and second is the main handles. Both handles are very strong (made of steel, same as the case) and nicely bolted on the case. You can install 2x 120mm fans on the top panel and should be able to install the 2x 120mm radiator as well (both from the inside, with the barbs placed under the handle).
There are 2 PCBs: one for the controllers on the top and second for the X-Dock. The first one takes power from the 4 pin Molex that stays with the front panel headers and 3 pin fan headers. There’s a separate wiring for the LED lights, so this way you can turn the LED lights on and off as you please. The PCB for the X-Dock is located above the top 5.25″ bay from the inside and in there you’ll need to install the Molex cable and the SATA cable got the X-dock to power up the 2.5″ drive when connected.
To remove the the front panel, after you need to first unscrew the top screws with pre-attached washers and then remove the screws on the support bar above the section of the front panel- above the section where you install the tool box. Then you push the front panel up and then remove it. In most case you wouldn’t need to remove the front panel, even if you tilt the HDD cage on the front- only if you plan to clean the entire case. Since the fans are installed with the 90 degrees tilt to sideways, you can bring 1 or both the bays on the front. You’ll need a screwdriver, even for the thumbscrew (Coolermaster’s factory installation of thumbscrews is very tight at first) and for couple of screws.
First you’ll need to remove the long thumbscrews from both sides of the HDD tray (so you’ll need to remove few of the front 5.25″ plates off to access the thumbscrew from the front side), slide the cages out. Remove more thumbscrews that secure the plate.
Reposition the plate with the right angled corner facing inside the case and then secure the plate using the thumbscrews, then slide in the HDD cage and then secure it using the longer thumbscrews. To to the same for the top you need to remove this “obstacle stick” by removing the Phillips head screws from both ends then install it sideways (you don’t really need to do it. I am calling it the obstacle stick because its pretty redundant and when you screw it back again the stick rotates with the screw itself unless you hold it down tightly) and then the same way for the top.
I don’t really like this way of installing it with the fan on the front. 1 of the reason is because there’s a gap of about 1.5 inch from the HDD bay to the right side panel so that more than enough space to hide the cable clutter from the SATA cable and the power cables on the other side. The 2nd reason is based on observation.
During testing, I had this system 2 feet above the ground and since I live on the first floor (Note to self: Avoid first floor apartments in the city) there’s a fair amount of dust accumulating on a daily basis. Interestingly despite the left side panel’s filter is more like double sheeted vents, the amount of dust being sucked in is much lower than having the fan face the front. I am using this case for few weeks now (more like bit more than a month) just to confirm and it turned out to be that way. Maybe its because the other end is facing the other side of the vented side panel or maybe its not facing the direction where the wind doesn’t usually blow from- maybe both. Having it on the side really helps.
Speaking of fans:
These are 120mm A12025-12CB-3BN-F1 fans that Coolermaster has been using for a very long time- since CM 690 days if I could recall it correctly. In full power, you can hear the fan sound very easily. As far as stock fan goes, Antec and Bitfenix has made a good impression so far. Especially on Bitfenix since the fan makes a slight “humm” sound if you’re keeping your eyes real close to it. Looks like the front fans are only meant for the HDD bays that is blown away through the other side of the vented side panel and the 200mm pushing air in from the top and the 140mm for pushing the air out.
The space between the rear part of the motherboard plate and the right side panel only bit more than 2 cms whereas space between the HDD bay and the right side panel is about 1.5 inch. CM should have been generous with the space behind the motherboard plate especially since the Thick 24pin sleeved ATX cables tends to be a nuisance. Is it a lot to ask more space over there?
The space between the motherboard plate and left side panel is about 8 inch and from the PCIe slots to the HDD bay is about 12 inches. Coolermaster could have provided a GPU card support for longer cards as non-reference tend of be larger and bit heavier- also end up even consuming 3 slots like some of the EAH CUII series cards from Asus.