HAF X Internal Design
We really liked how the original case stuck to the basics, focusing on essentials like excellent cable management. When we first opened the HAF 932, there were no annoying dividers or strange thermal modules. It didn't try to do anything special inside.
Upon first opening the HAF X, we immediately noticed that its internals were much more complex. While its general layout is the same and things like the motherboard tray have gone largely unchanged, Cooler Master has made a number of noteworthy alterations.
The patented Cooler Master finger-press buttons are still used for the 5.25" drive bays, providing an ultra-quick and reliable way to install and remove devices. Unlike many other tool-less designs that are clumsy and impractical, the finger-press buttons actually work very well.
The removable 3.5" hard drive racks also work nicely, making installation a breeze. The first 3.5" drive rack features a removable adapter for 2.5" drives to accommodate either standard, a good addition for a solid state drive.
While the HAF 932 featured six external 5.25" drive bays using the finger-press buttons, the HAF X only has four. The other two have been converted into what Cooler Master calls "SATA doc bays" which are essentially SATA hot-swappable bays. This provides easy access to hard drives allowing you to easily insert and remove drives. Unfortunately, Cooler Master has only provided this feature for two drives, but that's more than many competing products can say.
In total, the HAF X can house seven 3.5" drives, an increase from the HAF 932's five. The new chassis also has room for four 5.25" devices and nine expansion cards.
To help keep your cables neat, Cooler Master has added a power supply cable partition, something we've never seen before. Another new feature is called "VGA fan dock," which is supposedly developed in conjunction with Nvidia and lets a 120mm fan push cool air over the graphics cards.
The HAF X preserves the same 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 simple yet amazingly useful feature is now becoming standard amongst high-end computer cases.
Surrounding the motherboard tray is a number of rectangular holes that allow you to safely tuck away excess cable slack. There's quite a bit of room behind the tray and we managed to fit a lot of power cables along with SATA and USB cables.
The HAF X includes two 200mm fans, one 230mm fan and a 140mm fan. Additionally you can install another 200mm fan, 120mm fan and 80mm fan if desired.
The front-mounted 230mm fan features red LEDs and operates at 700 RPM, generating just 19 dBA of noise. The side door and top mounted fans spin at the same speed but don't have colored LEDs, while the rear smaller fan works at 1200 RPM generating 17dBA of noise. All told, the HAF X is a reasonably quiet case that moves a ton of air.
The HAF X's interior black paint job makes the case look much more professional. Overall, the internal design and layout of the Cooler Master HAF X is very solid and is a vast improvement over the original HAF 932.
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