Coolermaster ATCS840 Case ReviewZertz - November 20, 2008
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Climbing on top of the two feet tall tower reveals an interesting "front" panel along with another pair of huge fans. Up front are the power and reset buttons, both well built and appropriately sized. Between them are the power on and hard disk access LEDs, which both brightly light up blue. The "push to open" type panel door feels relatively sturdy, something rare in this type of opening, and, once popped open, a generous array of inputs and outputs are offered. A total of four USB ports, a single FireWire and eSATA ports along with a sound input and output, enough to get most people's external peripherals going quickly.
Continuing toward the back, the 230mm fans immediately jump into sight. Covered by a sleek sheet of aluminum full of honey comb shaped holes. This cover definitely keeps the very streamlined look of case going. Even though they don't sport an air filter other than the honey bee cover, they are meant to be used as exhausts so that's to be expected since there is no need not to let dust out. Both are solidly held by four screws keeping vibrations to a minimum, although the one on the back will have to be removed if you choose to mount the power supply up there. Unfortunately, that will leave the huge fan unused since there is no other spot to attach it. These two should allow for good airflow while keeping noise at a very tolerable level, thanks to their larger than average diameter, allowing them to push just as much air at a much slower rotational speed compared to a smaller fan. They can also be removed to open the space for three 120mm using the special brackets included within the accessory bag. It can also accommodate up to a triple liquid radiator - neat.
Beneath all this stuff, one metal foot in each and every corner keeps it still and stable with a piece of foam stuck under, absorbing vibrations. They are screwed into the casing so there is no risk to lose them when dragging around the case, although you probably don't want to carry something this big too far too often anyway. There is also a fan inlet designed for power supplies that have their fan on the bottom, so it can still pull air inside should you decide to mount it on the bottom. That is often a problem with bottom mounted units so it's nice to see that Coolermaster got this one right. The other trap can be used as a 120mm fan inlet, allowing a quick way for hot air generated by the power supply and video card to move away.
For those who are interested, here is the 230mm fan model used all over this enclosure. They can be powered either straight from the power supply using the molex connector or through the motherboard using the three pin header, allowing you to control their speed. They draw nearly 5W, so if you are to use your motherboard's fan headers, make sure they can take it as some are quite limited in the power they can supply. Unfortunately, Coolermaster doesn't sell these in the retail market. Finally, I installed the air duct, which is supposed to help reduce temperatures by letting air out from the expansion slots as fast as possible. I kind of doubt its usefulness, but we'll see how it does later on.
Now that I've went all around the outside, let's have a peak inside.