Thermaltake Tenor (VB2000BWS)
The Thermaltake Tenor is an untypical case in this review, considering the form-factor of the other products included. This case is intended for a PC-based multimedia center or a HTPC (Home Theater PC) rather than for a regular computer.
This multimedia orientation can be seen even in the design of the package:
The box is small, but heavy – no aluminum here! Except for the front panel, everything is made of good old steel. A minimum of accessories included:
There are no rails for optical or hard drives – they are fastened in the old and most reliable way, i.e. with screws. Externally, this system cases look like hi-fi consumer electronics:
The feet alone betray which market segment this system case is targeted at:
A stylish black exterior, no allusions to the PC world, a milled aluminum front panel – so if you put the Tenor next to hi-fi devices, it will be hard to guess its affiliation with computers. People would rather take it for a final amplifier than for a computer system case.
The front view is most impressive:
There’s no point of similarity to ordinary PCs. The only clues as to what this thing actually is are the labels under the buttons: there yet are no amplifiers with a Reset button.
Everything that shouldn’t be shown is covered under the massive front panel made of aluminum:
You can lower it down to get access to the three 5.25” and two 3.5” bays. The front panel of our sample was opening up with a screeching sound from its plastic micro-lift and I don’t know if it was just the fault of our particular sample or lack of lubricant – the panel is rather heavy, so the micro-lift mechanism is under a considerable load. I couldn’t, however, imagine a user of that system case carefully oiling the gears of the micro-lift, so I left everything as it was.
The bottommost 5.25” bay has its own cover: the manufacturer suggests that an optional panel with an infrared receiver and an informational display is put there (Thermaltake refers to this thing as “VFD media kit”). But after all, it’s up to the user to decide what to put in each particular bay.