Articles: Cases/PSU

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Floppy drives are fastened with screws you receive with the case. It’s different with optical drives, though. You first put in four screws with specially shaped heads and then slide the device into its bay along the guides. After the device sinks fully into its place, it is fixed there with a metal clip.

The bays of the devices – both internal and external – have spring-loaded metal plates for a stiff fixing of the installed device.

There are seven slits for the expansion cards in the real panel. The slits are covered with reusable brackets fixed without screws. The expansion cards are supposed to be locked in their slots with the help of the original lock which may be not very convenient, but does hold the brackets of the expansion cards very fast. There are spring-loaded plates between the slits for a better fixing of the brackets.

I’d like to acknowledge the original solution the manufacturer came up with to avoid an accidental loss of screws which are used to mount optical drives, for example. These screws are simply screwed into the cross bar that serves as a stiffness rib. So if you need a screw, you can just put one out of the bar; an unnecessary screw can be returned into the bar. So the user cannot run out of screws by losing them. Similarly, there are two case screws in a side of the 3.5” bay.

The CX-01B-SL-B-TC model is equipped with a 420W Chieftec HPC-420-302 DF power supply which has one power connector and one power button at its rear. Rather long cables come out of the PSU into the case: nine Molex connectors, two SATA HDD power connectors and two power connectors for floppy drives. Besides that, there’s a signal connector that can be attached to the mainboard’s fan connector to monitor the rotational speed of the PSU fan.

The system case is regularly cooled by the PSU fan alone, but you can add in up to five system fans: one 120mm at the rear panel, two 90mm fans at the right panel opposite to the HDD basket, and two fans up to 90mm in diameter at the left panel opposite to the CPU. Besides that, the rear and front panels have vent holes. The holes in the front panel are covered with a filter placed under the metal grid. As you can guess, air will be coming in through this filter only if all five fans are installed and if they all work to exhaust air. Well, even in this ideal case, dust may creep in through the vent holes in the real panel.

The additional fans are fastened on screws; there are no plastic cells here. You can install fans on the right panel only if hard disk drives are not already installed as the fans are attached to the mainboard’s mounting plate than to the side panel proper.

On the opposite side of the case, screws should go right through the left panel to fasten the fans, so you will see their heads.

During the tests I installed two 90mm fans with a rotation speed of 2,500rpm on the right panel to take air in, and one 120mm fan (1500rpm) was taking air out.

The results of the tests follow:

My tests show that you must not use this case without additional fans since the temperature of the hard disk drives is too high even in the Idle mode. This situation changes for the better after the installation of a fan at the rear panel of the case, but the Burn temperature of the drives is still alarming. It is only with fans attached opposite to the HDD basket that their temperature remains below 50°C. The installation of fans on both side and rear panels didn’t lead to a reduction of the temperature of the computer’s primary subsystems, rather otherwise – hot air from the hard disk drives was being drawn up to the CPU by the 120mm fan instead of being exhausted. As the result, the CPU temperature grew by 2 degrees centigrade.

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