If you've purchased a high-end motherboard in recent months, it's likely outfitted with USB 3.0 support -- but is your case? Probably not. Besides spanking new models, most desktop chassis still come with USB 2.0 ports on the front panel, and that includes Corsair's Obsidian 700D and 800D. Both $270 full-tower enclosures ship with the dated USB spec and that undoubtedly discourages some enthusiast shoppers, especially since competing cases such as the HAF X have the new interface.
Hoping to remedy the situation, Corsair has released an inexpensive "USB 3.0 upgrade kit." For $14.99, Obsidian 700D and 800D owners can replace their existing I/O panel with one that swaps two of the 700D/800D's USB 2.0 ports for USB 3.0. The new panel carries two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, an IEEE 1394 connector, as well as stereo and microphone jacks. As a reminder, the front panel USB 3.0 ports must be plugged into USB 3.0 ports on your motherboard or expansion card.
"Our Obsidian Series cases are designed and built to last through years of system builds and upgrades, and our customers are on the leading edge of technology and of USB 3.0 adoption," said Ruben Mookerjee, VP and General Manager for Components at Corsair. "We are pleased to provide an upgrade kit that allows Obsidian Series owners to bring a USB 3.0 port to the front of the case, making it easier to connect USB 3.0 devices." You can purchase the kit directly through Corsair's site.