Specifications, Availability and Pricing
Installed, the Hydra Pro looks clean as the flat, black SofTouch surface covers the majority of the 5.25" bay in the front of your case. On the left side is a grey button about the size of a pencil eraser that is the On/Off Switch for the LEDs. The bulk of the unit is taken up by the five sliders that control the voltages to the fans. On the right, placed evenly with the LED power button, the Hydra Pro power LED top denotes that the unit has power and should be functioning properly. Even with the mix of gunmetal grey for the slider and buttons, this is an attractive and streamlined unit, so you won't accidentally change the fans speed or LEDs just by rubbing against the control panel as you can with knob tube controllers.
Behind the scenes, the face plate and buttons is supported with a steel frame that also holds the PCB with all of the power components on it. This PCB sits between two longer tabs of steel with holes in it for mounting the Hydra Pro into the bay. On the back of said PCB, you will find five 2-pin leads to power BitFenix Spectre LED fans and also five 3-pin fan connections to power any fans. There is also a 4-pin Molex pass-through plug that supplies the power to the Hydra so it can deliver up to 30W per channel across the sliders. Don't worry too much if this is a bit confusing to you as I will be showing these bits in close-ups and discussing it all again.
Looking around to locate where I can buy the Hydra Pro, I am finding only two locations currently and the pricing is pretty close between the two. While Xoxide has the better price of $32.95 before shipping, Newegg is only charging $34.99 and that is with shipping included. I have seen cheaper controllers and most of those have big knobs to work or just don't look as nice as the SofTouch front bezel on the Hydra Pro.
For a $35 investment, I think the Hydra Pro is well worth the asking price to be able to customize noise levels and with the push of a button, take your case from a concert light show right to no lights at all, well from the fan LEDs anyways.