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Microcool Banchetto 101 Tech-Bench - Final Thoughts

Having very easy access to swap out cards, memory, or even a CPU just got easier! Microcool offers an open air solution with the Banchetto 101.

| Cables & Accessories in Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: May 6, 2010 5:36 am
TweakTown Rating: 88%      Manufacturer: Microcool

Final Thoughts

 

I have to say, for how involved this build is, with water cooling and getting all the racks out, parts in them and remounted, I never really got stuck or upset. There is a slight issue with the radiator mounting, but nothing I would say is detrimental. Even though mine didn't "fit", I was still able to successfully complete the build. To sum up my time with the Banchetto 101, I would say two words; attractive and easy. Attractive, well ; that's obvious. I mean even if this chassis isn't your flavor of choice, you still want one holding your hardware. Easy, what more can be said? I mean from beginning to end, there wasn't anything that I would say could or would cause issues in any of the steps up to booting.

 

Temperatures were great; it's water, what do you expect?! As the Banchetto 101 sits in the last image, the only fans I had running were the ones on the radiator. Testing things in my basement, I didn't need fans to keep the rest cooled, as ambient hovers at close to 20 degrees Celsius. The power supply can breathe well, so does the graphics card. Running Everest I found the drive to be right around 30 degrees while operating, so a fan really isn't needed if ambient is low. If it gets hot where you plan to place your Banchetto 101, I would suggest at least the two 92mm fans. A set of twelve fan screws to use with a radiator would have been nice, but nothing a run to the hardware store doesn't solve.

 

Long term, I can see an issue or two. One, and hopefully it never happens, but I could see a little brother or sister trying to sit on this chassis if left on the floor. When the chassis is fully disassembled, I won't lie, the Banchetto 101 is in a much weaker state than with all the removable trays screwed in place. Be careful what you do with it as you are building. The thing that annoys me the most is one or two of the screw holes are already sloppy. I can see very easily over time that these can get stripped and at minimum will need tapped to fit the coarse threaded thumbscrews. Aside from this I still like it very much.

 

Is it worth the $265 USD asking price? I have to say yes, yes it is. Starting with arriving assembled, removable parts that are super simple to remove, fill, and replace, and it offers a super clean water cooling experience. All the thumbscrew mounting makes swapping parts and the initial build process a snap, proving this, even with a lack of any paperwork; I breezed right on through the assembly. When I was done, even with it being components that aren't that attractive, the chassis still looks elegant and tidy. What isn't to like?

 

If cats or little kids don't come into play and you love to tinker, I say get yourself one; just be sure to get some compressed air as things will tend to get a little dusty. Don't let the score you are about to see fool you; if it wasn't for the lack of stores stocking the Banchetto 101, Microcool would have gotten higher. Look beyond that if you can and realize this is a very nice system with low availability.

 

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