When trying to come up with a single word to describe the new Xaser III, the first thing that comes to mind is "IMPRESSIVE". It has a ton of space, cooling that keeps it only about 1-2 degrees Celsius warmer than the modified Lian-Li that I generally use and has features that make it about the closest to tool-free that I have yet seen. It has enough room for a total of 12 drives and fully half of them are accessible from the exterior.
Cooling is accomplished by seven 80mm fans that are not too loud, and when you add in the rheostats, you get full control over their speeds and noise level. The built in HardCano unit is one of the best that I have seen Thermaltake come out with and the four speed controllers are a simple matter to get working properly.
Cost-wise, you'll need to get ready to shell out a few bucks. I have seen this case without power supply on NewEgg at US$187, but when you consider that quality cases generally fall into the $150-250 range, this isn't too far out of scale and actually falls into the lower part of that price range. After all, you get what you pay for.
While there are a lot of good features available with this enclosure, it isn't perfect by any means. I was more than a little disappointed when the PCI clips wouldn't work with a tall card. There are a lot of these type peripherals out there and it can be a challenge getting that screw in there when you still have the framing for that plastic clip in the way. Also, though the HardCano unit is excellent, the wiring could be a little longer to make it easier when it comes time to tuck those unsightly wires into little nooks and crevices.
Bottom line...If you've been considering jumping into the big leagues with regards to enclosures, then the Thermaltake Xaser III is well worth your consideration. With excellent features and cooling that is well above average, you'll be well on your way to a very cool looking case that is really that; cool!
Scads of room inside
Very good cooling
Not overly loud
Tool-free to the max
Excellent HardCano unit
PCI clips don't work with tall cards
HardCano could use longer wiring harness
Rating - 9/10 and TweakTown's Editors Choice Award
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