DARWINmachine intros hand-built, open-air computer chassis


Posts: 3,073   +97

Here’s an impressive case mod that could give Thermaltake’s modular Level 10 chassis a run for its money. Designed and produced by DARWINmachine, which is essentially a one-man operation run by a self-described architect and race-car designer, the Hammerhead HMR989 takes an unconventional approach to computer design by putting the guts of the machine on the outside for everyone to see – and it’s certainly a sight behold.

The case is made from brushed, anodized aluminum and Eco resin panels, combined with bright blue LED lights, an open-air cooling system that includes the Thermaltake SpinQ CPU cooler and a downwards oriented I/O panel for a clean look. Each case is made to order by DARWINmachine's Matthew Kim and will vary in finish and color.

Unfortunately Kim is not just selling the case by itself, which can be a deal breaker for the enthusiast audience he targets – especially since the Hammerhead isn’t equipped with the highest-end parts that you might expect on a system that’s selling for $2,899. These include an Intel Core i7-860 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 40GB SSD and 640GB hard drive, plus an extra hot-swap tray for a second drive, a Kingston 750W modular power supply, and GeForce GTX 460 graphics. You also get the aforementioned Thermaltake SpinQ CPU cooler, a DVD drive and Windows 7 64-bit Home Premium.

On the other hand, it’s a unique piece of craftsmanship and it’s creator claims the Hammerhead’s aluminum chassis is designed to last as new components can be easily upgraded over time. Machines are hand-assembled one-at-a-time by Kim and the whole process takes around two weeks. You can check out more images over at Darwin Machine.

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Posts: 489   +0
No doubt a unique custom-made PC although the parts list are a bit of a letdown considering the $ 2,899.00 price. It would make a nice conversation piece although I can't really tell which end is up :).


Posts: 358   +42
Real bummer that the case isn't available on it's own. I would really enjoy making a build with that case.


Posts: 1,392   +72
Nah, i like my expensive hard worked for parts in a case where they're protected. All it would take is an unfortunate trip up, or my little nephew to come in when i'm busy and start "playing"...and i could be missing half of a graphics card quite easily. Also, a case can stop a hell of a lot of dust getting to the vital components , and that's obviously a bonus.

If you've got no pets, no children, and no money worries, then it's a different story...

Edit: It could be an electricity risk aswell...I certainly wouldn't like to go anywhere near it when it's turned on, and don't forget kids again.


Posts: 1,372   +17
Looks pretty cool, but with that price tag and those parts it's a deal breaker, not to mention the other issues that benny bought up.


Posts: 648   +1
Looks stunning.
But you can forget about SLI/Xfire or simply expanding at all.
And I'd imagine its very loud as well. Not only is there no sound dampening, but the cases design would amplify all system noise.
I'd also hope you've got a great air purifier system as there's no case filtering here either.

But at least it's pretty, should be a hit with the Apple crowd. :p


Posts: 3,836   +1,189
As everyone else thinks this looks really amazing BUT, you could make much much much MUCH more with that money (And not drink coke or pepsi or coffee scared while using it).


Posts: 3,216   +1,469
@PanicX, I lol'd at the apple comment, funny :)

As I read from an asute comment in the thermaltake 10 review. Don't think of it like a $2,800 computer, its' also art. People pay far more for art that does far less. Put it up on your desk, not under it, and it'll be safe from spills and bumps.

I'm also not a big enough art fan to put it ahead of function, and no protection, noise dampening, etc would make it a tough buy. (cost notwithstanding)


Posts: 21   +0
It looks cool, but it also looks like it is top-heavy and would fall over sideways and be hanging by it's cables in one knee-bump. That and all the places for dust to settle.. I think I'll put my $3000 somewhere else.