Articles: Cases/PSU

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Corsair Obsidian 800D

Corsair’s brand is well-known to computer enthusiasts as the company offers a wide range of products including solid state drives, fast memory modules, power supplies and cooling systems. All of this has been already tested in our labs, but we have not yet had a look at Corsair’s system cases. This is a new field for the company, actually. The Obsidian 800D we are going to discuss now is the first model released under the Corsair brand. The company follows its policy of offering enthusiasts-targeted products here, too: the Obsidian 800D is a roomy and functional product.


Huge is the first word that comes to one’s mind when looking at this thing. The Obsidian 800D is very large and, being made from 1mm steel, very heavy. The name of Obsidian suits nicely this piece of black steel which hardly has a single smooth line. A huge plastic window in the side panel offers a view of its innards for a curious eye.

Interestingly, there are no vent holes anywhere near the front panel. It looks like we’ve got yet another nonstandard ventilation solution.

The grave appearance of the front panel is only enlivened by a Power button and a LED indicator. The I/O connectors and Reset button are hidden under a flip-back cover at the top of the case. There are four USB ports, placed widely apart, two audio connectors, a FireWire port, and no eSATA. The lack of eSATA is a pity especially as might have been fitted under the cover easily.

In the center of the front panel, under the five 5.25-inch bays, there is a door that gives you access to a rack for four HDDs.

The back panel does not seem to show us anything particular exciting. It is a standard enough layout with a bottom position of the power supply. Take note of the fan grids: the 140mm fan grid allows installing a 120mm fan, too. The grid at the top of the case above the holes for a liquid cooling system’s pipes suggests some free space in there. But the most intriguing thing is the grid that goes along the right panel. It looks like the space behind it takes an active part in driving airflows inside the chassis.

The case stands on three massive transverse feet each of which has two small vibration-absorbing pads. It is the bottom panel that allows the air into the chassis. That’s why the feet are so tall and more than half of the bottom panel is perforated. The vent holes are covered with a large removable dust filter which can be taken out through the back panel for cleaning.

We like the way the side panels are released: you only have to press a button on the back panel which moves a hitching bar inside the case. This is easy and practical.

The interior is extremely roomy! It is partitioned into a few compartments. For example, the bottom part of the case is separated from the main part with a blank partition. The HDD rack is almost completely separate from the rest of the chassis.

There are a lot of openings in the mainboard’s mounting plate. Whatever mainboard you may take, from micro-ATX to EATX, you will be able to put your cables through the openings into the space behind the right panel of the case. If there are no cables, these openings may be sealed by rubber covers.

Take note of the free space at the top of the case. There is a generous 10 centimeters of free area between the top panel and the mainboard’s top edge. It can be occupied by the radiator of a liquid-cooling system, for example.

Of course, the radiator would need a stream of air for cooling, so there are vent grids and seats for three 120mm fans on the top panel. Unfortunately, the basic configuration of this system case has no fans here. Moreover, there are no dust filters on those vents. An interesting fact: the top panel is designed in such a way that you can place the radiator not only inside but even on the chassis.

The partition inside the chassis is almost completely blank except for a vent grid in the center where a 140mm fan is installed to drive the air from the bottom compartment to the top one. There are also two small rubberized openings nearby. They will come in handy if you need to put some slim cables into the bottom compartment. We guess they are intended for the pipes that may lead to a pump of a liquid cooling system installed on the bottom of the case.

The bottom compartment is occupied by a power supply. The mounting panel is obviously meant for a long PSU model, but there is still plenty of space left. Take note of the vent openings in the bottom panel: they go from the back all the way to the drives rack.

The front part of the bottom compartment, separated from the rest of the chassis with a detachable partition, can take in two hard disk drives. They don’t have any cooling fans in the basic configuration of the system case but you can install a 120mm fan on the side panel if necessary.

To install your HDDs into the bottom bays, you have to use special guides and remove the front panel. As you can guess, this place is meant for system disks that do not need to be accessed frequently and quickly.

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