We held the HAF X's internals in high regard, but in many ways the CM Storm Trooper takes things to the next level. You'll notice some of the more obvious changes when looking at the motherboard tray which features an improved cable management setup.
The Cooler Master finger-press buttons for the expansion drives have been scrapped. In fact, the drive bay area of the Trooper has been completely redesigned. The new configuration accommodates a pair of what Cooler Master calls 90-degree rotatable 4-in-3 HDD modules. We like this addition for several reasons.
The Trooper essentially has nine 5.25" drive bays. The 4-in-3 HDD modules take up the bottom six, converting them into eight 3.5" bays that can also support eight 2.5" devices. With the modules removed, the bays can still be used to house 5.25" devices, making the case's storage expansion highly customizable.
This area can be outfitted with virtually any size drive, you can mount the devices in two directions (front to back or side to side). This adds to the customizability and it's not something you'll find in many other cases.
Cooler Master also provides a small 2.5" 4-bay drive cage on the bottom of the Trooper, so you don't have to sacrifice your larger bays to install SSDs or other compact drives.
In all, the Trooper can support three 5.25" devices (nine if you remove the 4-in-3 HDD modules), eight 3.5" drives and four 2.5" drives (twelve if you use the larger HDD modules).
Moving back over to the motherboard tray, the Trooper preserves the rear CPU hole in the motherboard tray that makes it easier to install and uninstall heatsinks, which would normally require you to remove the entire tray. This hole has been enlarged so it spans almost the entire length of a standard ATX motherboard, thus ensuring better compatibility with your hardware.
The tray is surrounded by various rectangular holes that let you hide your tacky wires. There's plenty of room behind the tray as we managed to fit several power cables along with SATA and USB cables.
The case can support CPU coolers as tall as 7.3" (186mm) which covers virtually everything on the market. Likewise, all GPUs should be covered with enough clearance for cards measuring up to 12.7" (322mm) long. For reference, the Radeon HD 6990 is the longest gaming graphics card and measures 12" long (304mm).
The CM Storm Trooper includes a 200mm fan, a 140mm fan and two 120mm fans. Additionally, you can install another four 120mm fans in the bottom and side door of the case.
The top-mounted 200mm fan operates at 1000 RPM, generating 23dBA of noise. The front 120mm fans are attached to the 4-in-3 HDD modules and feature red LED lights, spin at 1200 RPM and make 17dBA of noise. The rear 140mm fan excludes LED lights, spins at 1200 RPM and produces 19dBA of noise.
As enthusiasts have come to expect of higher-end cases, the Trooper has a full interior paint job. Overall, we prefer the internal design of Cooler Master's latest case over the acclaimed HAF X.