Aluminum Green X-SuperAlien Chassis with 500 Watt PSU
When I was first informed that I was reviewing this case, I was pretty excited because it looked to be the sharpest looking pre-modded case I had ever seen. When I received this case by UPS, my excitement heightened a bit when I saw it was double boxed, my excitement went through the roof when I got my first glimpse of the case?I was on the border line of a Mini-O if ya know what I mean. The color of the case is incredibly bright and uniform; it has little sparkles in it giving you the impression that auto paint was used for the aluminum externals of this case. The front of the case has to be the most impressive part of the entire chassis, the color of the plastic is a bit lighter than the aluminum back part of the case; the color combination looks very good! On the front door of the case there is an imprint for a case badge as well two shiny black embossed ?)? and ?(? shaped plastic inserts. These, on top of the vent holes towards the bottom of the front door, make the case look incredibly sharp and futuristic. Towards the middle of the case you have, what I like to call, the control panel, here you have your LCD temp. monitor, mic and speaker output jacks, as well as two fan speed controller knobs. Towards the bottom of the case there are arched vent holes like seen on most Antec cases available today. The left side panel of the case has a pre-installed window held in by 14 black round-topped screws. The window has a fan pre-installed on the bottom towards the back with an attractive chrome plated X-Alien fan grill. This is truly one impressive looking case?every detail has been given great attention to looks and quality!
The side door of the case is quite similar to what you would see on most Antec and Chieftec cases except for two differences ? its lime green and has a pre-installed alien fan grill blowhole installed right into the acrylic window! The handle on the left can be pushed forward towards the front of the case to unlatch the panel and take it off; you also have the ability to lock the side panel onto the case via a small keyhole right beside the handle. While playing around with this case I noticed one thing that I didn?t like at all, after pushing the handle forward to take the side of the case off I noticed that it scraped some of the black paint off of the latch. This was pretty disappointing, if you buy a nice case like this and spend a lot of money on it you don?t want the paint to chip or scrape off this easily. This handle should be dyed black, not painted black. This is the only part of the case that seems to have problems with the paint scraping off, there were no other evident signs of paint chipping or scratching located on any other part of the case. The acrylic window in this case is pretty nice; it?s installed and held in place with 14 black snap in round-topped pins. The window is flush with the aluminum of the side panel itself; if you run your finger across the acrylic and aluminum at the same time you will notice that they are even, the window isn?t set back like you see on some other pre-modded cases. High quality stuff here folks?!
The top of the case has a pre-installed blowhole featuring one of Aspire?s X-Alien fan grills. The fan used for this blowhole is a Turbo Cool 2,500RPM quad-LED (along with every other fan in the case). The fan is attached to the top of the case with four round-topped pins just like the ones that were used the window and the intake fan that was pre-installed into the side of the window.
Let?s see, where to start here. This is what I prefer to call, the ?Control Panel.? This is where your temperature readouts and fan controls are located. Right below the LCD temperature display you are given the ability to plug in one firewire device, two USB devices, and two audio devices (standard being microphone and front speakers/headphones). The fan controller knobs are chrome coated/painted plastic which looks really sharp when the blue backlight from the LCD reflects off of them. The fan controllers require power from a molex connector on your power supply which throughputs and regulates power to the fans which are attached to the controllers as well as the LCD. One thing I noticed about the fan controller is that the power cables aren?t long enough and the fact that the 2 front fans are attached to channel one, if you try to change this you?re going to have one mess of cables.
As you can see this is a very attractive backlit LCD display. The blue color is very rich and uniform. However, looks aren?t all that matter here; if you look across the top of the LCD you?ll notice it says CPU and HDD, when I first saw this I instantly said to myself, ?What if I don?t want to monitor my CPU and/or HDD?? The labeling here really needs to be, I guess you could say, blander, something like Temp1 and Temp2. Maybe the option to switch between Fahrenheit and Celsius could also be added? Other than this minor flaw, which is really just a personal preference, this LCD is one of the nicest I?ve seen that come pre-installed into the front of a case!
The power and HDD LEDs that come with the case are green (power) and amber (HDD activity). This is something that always bothers me ? if you?re going to manufacture a super-flashy pre-modded case, why the hell would you stick with standard colored LEDs? These really need to be changed to blue or even UV to match the color of the fans inside of the case. If you look at the picture closely you can see my reflection in the black and chrome of the door and the fan controller on the case; this should give you an idea of just how nice and glossy/shiny everything is!
Upon opening the front door of the case for the first time I instantly noticed that there was FIVE 5? drive bays. This is a very good feature to have in a mid-tower case; this gives you the ability to add more modification bay devices like a CoolerMaster Musketeer or a DigiDoc 5+. Most mid-tower cases only have four of these bays which these days isn?t quite enough for all of the new innovative bay modification devices being released, with five you have a little more room to add more ?stuff.? Another thing I noticed was the fact that the 5? bay covers are plastic and the 3? floppy covers are aluminum. Because of this there is a slight color differentiation between the two materials; every one of the bay covers need to be made from the same material.
When you first look at this picture you may be thinking to yourself, ?What the hell?? Well, that?s the same thing I thought. This case has a really cool feature which enables you to install your 3? devices much like you install your 5? devices. What you do is screw, let?s say your floppy drive, into the metal ?|___|? frame and then it latches in just like you 5? devices do. The frame has room to install two devices which will be latched in at the same time, meaning if you pull the frame out both devices are going to come out at the same time with it (if you have two installed).
The back of the case?where to start? There are a total of seven expansion slots, which today would mean the ability to add one AGP card and six PCI cards. One of the slot covers has a notch cut out of it so that you can run cables out the back of the case for front port attachments like mic and speaker outputs. There are two quad blue LED fans installed on the back of the case to exhaust heat. The I/O panel that comes with the case, in my opinion, doesn?t fit at all; you have this shiny aluminum case and then you have the I/O panel which is a dark grey steel colored eyesore which isn?t compatible with most of today?s newer motherboards. Then at the top you have the power supply which I will get to later on in the review. The back of the case is pretty standard.
This is a picture of the right side of the case. Here you can see just how nice and sparkly the green color of this case really is. You can also notice the color difference between the front bezel of the case and the back of the case. I would prefer these colors to be the same but this color difference isn?t that big of deal because it by no means looks bad.
The lower vent panel on the front of the case can be removed to reveal the two front intake fans via a small latch located on the bottom of the front part of the case. If you look at this picture you?ll see that there are a bunch of cables on the left side, if you recall, earlier in the review when I was talking about how you would have a mess of cables if you tried to take these two fans off the first channel of the fan controller you would have one big mess of cables?now you know what I mean. These two fans should just be standalone, by standalone I mean not connected to the fan controller. What if you want to put your CPU fan on channel one and your blowhole(s) on channel two? This shouldn?t require the task of a total cable reroute, well maybe not a total reroute, but a pretty hefty one?my sarcasm got the best of me there.
This is a picture of the intake fan installed into the window of the case. As you can see it features the same X-Alien fan grill that was seen on the top blowhole. This fan is the same as every other fan in the case ? Turbo Cool 2,500RPM Quad-Blue LED blue transparent 80mm?say that five times fast!
This is just a picture of the power supply installed in the case. Nice isn?t it? I?ll talk more about this later on in the review. I won?t make ya wait too much longer because I know you?re dieing to see what this thing looks like.
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