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AZZA Nova 8000 Review

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AZZA Nova 8000 Closer Look:

Let's start with the top I/O panel. There are four USB ports that are lined up so that large flash drives won't crowd each other. Two USB 3.0 (blue) and two USB 2.0 ports with the microphone and headphone jacks in the middle. Just above these ports to the left are the start button and reset button. I think these are a little too close to each other. You can hit the wrong button if you aren't careful. I like to see some distance between these two buttons. Anyway, just to the right are a plus and minus button - these are for fan speed control. The Nova 8000 lets you control up to five case fans. At an angle there is a narrow clear lens that actually has an orange LED for when the computer is turned on. There is also a blue HDD activity LED and a green LED for fan speed. A little later we will see what the LEDs look like when they are lit up. The next thing to look at are the side doors, which I have opened.  They are dual hinged at the top and bottom and open toward the front of the case. I really like these doors as they open and close firmly. Make sure you have the doors closed before you lay the case flat (for example - during motherboard installation) or you may damage the hinges.

  

 

The forward side doors, which are both open, separate the case into two zones - a front zone that houses the four optical drives and six hard drives, and a rear zone for the motheboard, power supply and cooling. To the right we are looking at the back side of the drive zone. The green circuit board is for a hot swap feature that we will talk about later.

 

 

After the 5.25" optical drive bay covers are removed, you have a straight shot to the rear of the case. Visible is the rear 120mm exhaust fan. At the right is one of the 5.25" optical drive bay covers.  There is a nice spring-loaded lever that you depress to remove the cover. Most covers just pop in and out, and sometimes they feel like you are about to break them, but the covers on the Nova 8000 have a firm, solid feel when you install or remove them from the bay opening.

 

 

The top cover is secured by two thumb screws from the rear of the case and is easily removed. For the top exhaust, the Nova 8000 comes with two 120mm 3-pin fans and as you can see, there are mounting provisions for a third fan. Of course, a radiator would also look nice up top, and you can mount one up to 360mm in length. I have the top cover shown from the underside so you can see that there are plenty of holes (very fine ones on the orange mesh) for air to escape. There is no filter panel, but as easy as the top cover is to remove, cleaning will be no problem.

 

 

Mounted to the rear of the hard drive cage is a small printed circuit board for hot swap capability, and it can handle two drives. Here, looking from the rear of the hard drive cage, you can see that there is a Molex input power socket, the two SATA cable sockets, and there are even two fan headers. Fans plugged into these headers will run at full speed. The hot swap circuit board is mounted for use with the center two drives, however there are four screws holding it in position so it is easy to move it to the top or bottom two drives. In the right hand picture, we are now looking into the hard drive cage and you can see where the hard drives would plug into the hot swap board. Information on the AZZA website references an option to have six hot swap bays, which would require two additional circuit boards to be purchased, however I was unable to find anywhere to order them on the AZZA website. I think being able to make all of the HDDs hot swappable is a good idea. Perhaps a call to AZZA would yield some pricing and availability.

 

 

The hard drive cage is held in with three thumb screws and a nice feature is that it can be reversed, meaning that you can flip it around so that the hard drives are accessible from the opposite side of the case. The picture to the right shows the top cover removed and this exposes the socktets for the fan control header. Shown are four case fans connected, but there is a fifth connector tucked up under the trim and is not visible. These are all 3-pin connectors. The fan speed buttons let you vary the speed in four increments between 40% and 100%.

 

 

With the rear side panel removed, and the forward door open, you get a feel for the full size of the case. Cable management is facilitated by the multiple rubber grommets and access holes to route your cables. The hard drive cage has six plastic trays that slide into slots in the cage. Each tray has mounting holes for 3.5" hard drives. Once secured to the tray, the hard drive neatly slides into the cage. Swing the orange latch closed and the hard drive is secured to the cage.

 

 

With the front panel removed, you can see the front 120mm intake fan. This included fan has orange LEDs that accent the orange trim on the case. When you adjust the fan speed from the buttons on the top I/O panel, the fan LEDs will change intensity. The front mouning allows for the addition of a second fan. The front panel easily pops off for cleaning and there is no dust filter.

 




  1. AZZA Nova 8000: Introduction & Closer Look
  2. AZZA Nova 8000 Closer Look: Working Components
  3. AZZA Nova 8000 Closer Look Working Components: Continued
  4. AZZA Nova 8000 Specifications & Features
  5. AZZA Nova 8000 Testing: Setup & Results
  6. AZZA Nova 8000 Conclusion
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