GMC H-80 Case Reviewjlqrb - March 15, 2010
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The GMC H-80 is a mid-sized steel/plastic chassis that comes with a nice clean outer design. The front bezel is all plastic and instead of using a removable bay covers, the H-80 uses ones that stay connected to the bezel and are pushed down by the opening drive. With this design the DVD drive will be hidden behind the front bezel, which depending on your preference, can help the look of the case. Turning the case around you see the steel all black rear panel. This panel has a two-way bottom-mounted power supply area, which can accommodate an ATX power supply with the fan either facing up or down. Above the PSU installation area you have seven expansion slots, two water-cooling tube holes, a rear 120mm exhaust fan and the rear I/O port area. Each side of the case has a different look to it and these looks are part of the functions. The side with the fan has a large square area that will hold either one large 250mm case fan (which is included) or up to 4 optional 80mm fans. The whole square area has a large dual-layer dust filter in it that is easily removed for cleaning. The dual-layering makes the filter feel very thick, which should make it more effective at keeping dust out of the case. This side also has two rectangular vents that look nice and will aid in the air-flow as well. The other side panel is plain for the most part, but it does have a section that is elevated out a bit from the rest of the panel. This will create more room for cable management, which will help the cables you store behind the motherboard tray and still be able to put the side panel back on.
The control panel on the H-80 is found at the top of the front bezel and has a very nice and spacious layout. The power and rest switches are large, easily accessible and work very well. These switches are found above the I/O ports and each has a icon to display the function, the power switch has a red power icon and there is a white R on the the reset switch. Between the two buttons is a rectangular display screen that has the power light, HDD activity light and a temperature display. Below the display screen is the front panel I/O ports, which have four USB ports, one E-SATA port and audio ports. Everything on the front panel is controlled by cables that enter the case through the the top drive bay and connect to either your motherboard headers or power cable from your power supply. The only cable that doesn't connect to anything is the sensor for the temperature reading on the front screen, as this cable is instead placed near a location that you want to get readings for, such as the CPU or chipset.
As stated before, the front bezel does not have removable bay covers and instead uses permanent ones that are pushed open or closed by the drive behind them. This gives the front panel a uniform look, that wont be changed regardless of what is in the internal bay. Below the bays is a front intake access area that also works the same way and this area has a 120mm intake fan behind it that can be accessed by lifting up the front cover. This will allow you to clean the fan filter without having to remove the entire front bezel. When it does come time to remove it though, for installation of drives or to take the fan out, it is extremely easy and all you need to do is pull up from the bottom of the bezel.
The bottom of the case has two ventilation areas. The one closest to the rear of the case is where the power supply will be and the other is for an optional 120mm case fan. An extra fan at the bottom can supply or remove extra air from the case, but with airflow being limited to due to carpet and the case sitting low to the ground it might not really help to have a fan here. To improve the airflow to the power supply though, the case has four rubber feet that are around an inch in size, that will hold the PSU off the bottom of the case. These feet will help create some room for air to travel though and they will also make the case stand in a more stable and secure manner, so it can't be easily knocked over.