With all the images fresh in your mind, let's go over what the Blackhawk has to offer. First off, it's a budget conscious chassis. In the form I received, we are looking at right around $125 dollars to get one to your door. While there are a huge amount of full towers on the market for this same pricing, it takes a "special touch" to stand above the rest, which brings me to me second point. XClio offers a very intuitive control panel for a three zone fan system, which you don't find in just every case. The third and final thing is to think outside of the box every once in a while and add user friendly features that slip past the design teams of most of the budget minded manufacturers. Something simple like a front hinging door to ease replacing the rear panel, as with most slide and lock style doors, we all know sometimes it takes two men and a small boy to get it back into place.
There are some things I would have liked to have seen in the Blackhawk which I think could make this chassis move from a good case for the price to an excellent case for the price. Painting the interior is almost a must to most of the build community, and I really would rather plain steel over the grayish coating applied; it sort of cheapens the overall look. With things like snap on risers for the motherboard and tool-less drives, I would have expected to see an attempt at a tool-less expansion slot system. I found, rather, the tried and true thumbscrew setup. With my motherboard choice, cooling is rather limited, as the fans in the top do take up some of that needed room. With the design of the Blackhawk, removing one of those said fans involves a lot more than unscrewing the four screws and pulling it out, but it still can be done to accommodate larger coolers.
Personal preferences aside, the Blackhawk from XClio leaves me liking the overall package. Some may not care for the aesthetics, but I am a fan of black and simple. This case is both. Now thinking outside the box, XClio delivers a three zone cooling system that is typically found in more expensive chassis' and while the front hinged doors is nothing new to designers, I was surprised to see it in a case in this price range. Speaking of pricing, the Blackhawk is currently in stock at just a few locations. Looking for the best deal, you will find it listed at Newegg for $109.99, plus shipping. If a windowed chassis is a must, XClio offers just that for $30 more. If you are looking for a reasonably priced chassis that will offer more than most, take a look at the XClio Blackhawk on your next trip shopping.
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