Corsair is one of those companies that needs no introduction, and for that matter, if you haven't seen or heard of the Obsidian series by now, you really need to get out from under that rock. Over the years I have seen what started with the 800D, a chassis well ahead of its time, and has since blossomed into, at my last count, six variations now on the elegance that is the Obsidian.
We also just took a look at the 900D not too long ago, and with that design, they took the 800D to all new heights and solved a ton of the issues that plagued the design of the 800D. This just goes to show that Corsair isn't sitting on their laurels and depending on one or two cases to fit everyone's needs. They almost have a sixth sense to what the masses want, and are able to keep producing solutions to keep up with these needs.
Where most of the Obsidian cases are designed really well, I know firsthand that building in the 800D and the 900D, while both huge cases, takes quite a bit of pre-planning to get everything in right, and not have a complete mess on your hands when you are done. This time around, things are a touch different in the aspect of designing the latest chassis to be offered in this series. Things like modular drive bays, new side mounted SSD trays, tool-free clips and HDD trays, push button front panel to access the dust filter, at any angle you look at the latest Obsidian, you can tell it is designed for speedy builds in a chassis that is designed to make thing both quick and easy. Gone are a lot of the things that bombed on the 800D, but the 900D lends its design elements, with plenty of water cooling capability in this new design too. So if you want to try to complicate things, Corsair has you covered here too.
At first glance the Obsidian 750D we are looking at today does resemble the rest of the cases on the outside, but with our windowed version we are testing, it is easy to see that Corsair stuck with the newer, much larger, tinted window offering with this design. Inside of the chassis you are going to find all the things that make case builders all warm and fuzzy, with plenty of room to fill this chassis with some serious amounts of hardware. On top of that there are the new design elements that make this super simple to rearrange or customize to fit your specific needs, but to see it all, you must hang tight as we get through the specifications and packaging on the next page.
Specifications, Availability and Pricing
Corsair first delivers the fact that the Obsidian 750D comes with a two year warranty. This chassis stands at 22 inches tall, 21.5 inches deep, and is just wider than nine inches. The chassis is comprised of steel and plastic, but true to the Obsidian series, the front bezel has a brushed aluminum fascia applied. The front offers both a removable section for the 5.25" bays at the top, and the lower section pops off to allow access to the dust filter or the pair of AF 140L fans. The left side is almost entirely taken up with a large tinted window that offers a somewhat secretive view inside of the chassis. Out back the chassis offer nine expansion slots and a couple of water cooling knock-outs to take things external. The right side of the chassis is a plain steel panel, but at the top, there is a large magnetic dust filter and room for all sorts of fan configurations. The bottom of the chassis also offers a dust filter for the power supply, but I will wait to explain what else goes on in front of the PSU.
Inside there is a lot going on. There are three 5.25" bays at the top with tool-free clips on one side. Below that, just behind the fans, there is a pair of HDD racks that are sitting side by side. Each of these racks will house three 3.5" drives via the slide in trays inside of them. There racks can also be stacked or completely removed. There are also four plastic trays that will house 2.5" drives, these are on the back wall and turned on their sides, but utilizes what is usually dead space in a chassis. Then the motherboard tray is fully loaded with options as well. It offers compatibility for motherboards from Mini-ITX on through Extended and XL-ATX motherboards. Along with that potential it also offers a large CPU cooler access holes, five large holes with grommets and three at the top without them, 13 wire tie points, and raised steel bums for standoffs with a helper standoff in the center to help support the board while you fasten the screws.
There are many options for cooling inside of this chassis. I already made mention of the AF 140L fans that are in the front, but there is also a third placed in the rear of the chassis as an exhaust. This should keep things very quiet while the 750D is in operation. What the chart then addresses is the fact that you can house up to eight fans - okay, fair enough, but what about water cooling? From what I can see, the top of the chassis will allow for a 360mm radiator at the expense of part of the 5.25" bays. It also appears to be able to house a 280mm radiator here if you choose to go that route. The front of the chassis will also hold a dual radiator, as well the floor of the chassis if you completely remove the HDD racks and pedestals. Of course you can also use a single radiator on the back of the chassis, too.
As I look around for the pricing and availability, I see that this chassis is widely available as I write this, but you need to be on your toes when purchasing the Obsidian 750D. While at the low-end of the pricing, there is the listing at Amazon for this chassis at $159.99 and includes free shipping. Newegg has the same price listed, but is currently requiring an additional $16 or so for shipping. I am also seeing that the listings will go up to the $250 range to acquire this chassis, so you can see why I said to pay attention when looking to buy this. Considering what I have already seen, and just about to show you, I strongly think that Corsair is right on the mark with the $159.99 pricing. Corsair should have no issues selling the Obsidian 750D. For the elegance that is Obsidian, and a much more user friendly layout has definitely put me in their corner with this design.
Corsair again went with plain brown cardboard with black printing on it to present the chassis to the customers. The front of which offers a rendering of the chassis inside next to a story of the chassis design with features and components that should make you want to buy this. At the bottom, in the wide black band, you find the Obsidian series 750D naming.
While UPS did cover the Corsair name at the top of this panel, they were gracious enough not to cover over the specifications charts or the renderings of the front and inside of the chassis.
With the Corsair name at the top followed by a large exploded diagram of the chassis is one way to certainly show off the design of the 750D. Below that there are four other stories and features lists to go along with the English and French versions on the front.
Since the story and features were multi-lingual, it only makes sense that they deliver the specifications charts in the same manner, providing three more here. Again as the other side offered, the bottom offers the same renderings of the front and inside of the chassis.
Inside of the cardboard, Corsair uses the combination of thick Styrofoam end caps to protect from larger impacts, and the plastic liner to keep the surfaces from vibration damages. To help keep the front panels attached in transit, they also taped the bays and the larger front panel below it.
Corsair Obsidian 750D Full-Tower Chassis
The front bezel has a thick plastic surround with an even gap before you get to all that brushed aluminum. In this design just the three bay covers and the I/O plate cover come off to remove the bay covers and install devices. The lower section also comes off, but is backed with the fans and a dust filter.
Speaking of the front I/O, here it is. On the left there are the 3.5mm jacks for HD Audio and a tiny reset button. On the right you are given a pair of both USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports. Right in the middle at the top is the power button with a white LED on the left denoting power, and the one on the right for HDD activity.
The top of the 750D is mostly the mesh cover as the steel wraps around it. Actually this is a magnetic cover that easily peels off to allow access under it for fan or radiator installations.
The left side of the chassis has a steel panel that aligns well with the rest of the chassis. Taking up most of that panel is the large, slightly tined, window that allows almost a full view inside of this chassis.
At the rear of the 750D it starts off with some ventilation above the rear I/O and 140mm fan. Below that are nine expansion slots, and next to it is a pair of knock-outs for tubing. That leaves us with a bottom mounted power supply and the filter that slides out from here.
The right side of the 750D is a solid, textured, black, steel panel. Nothing much to see other than the ding (near the bottom at center) that door took on its way to us.
Under the chassis the 750D has very small rubber pads to secure it on a table, but the chunky support structure of the legs seems to be very stable. There is the dust filter under the PSU, but you can also see room for a pair of optional fans.
Inside the Obsidian 750D
Looking inside the chassis for the first time, it is easier to get a sense of the layout I was describing earlier. Even with just a quick glance at this design, I can easily spot things that are going to make my life easier in the build process.
This side of the optical bay drive cage has three clips in place to allow for tool-free mounting of the drives. If desired, there is the option to be backed up with screws on both sides.
The front of the case comes with two 140mm fans, but also offers holes for 120mm fans. At the floor there is a pair of the HDD cages to store up to six 3.5" drives.
If you don't like them sitting side by side, there is also this manner of installing the cages. If there are no 3.5" drives in the build, you can also remove both cages and the plastic risers they are sitting on.
As I was about to get the image from inside of the chassis looking at the roof, I held up the corner of the top mesh to show that it will peel right off and will flex around any screw heads, while the magnetic strip keeps it in place around the edges.
Now looking at the roof from inside, found here is room for a pair of 140mm fans, or the option for three 120mm fans. The motherboard tray is also dropped sufficiently enough for thin radiators and fans to not cause issues with the motherboard.
Taking a glance at the motherboard tray, there are things like the large CPU cooler opening, grommets in the wiring holes, and the lack of the need to install standoffs all going for it to help speed the install up. For those looking for a tidy finished product, there is plenty of room and tie points for that.
The floor of the 750D offers a large area to the left for the PSU, but offers nothing as far as pads to sit on. The right side is most of the way cleared out; as I plan to remove the pair of pedestals as well as the cages I have already pulled out.
Here is the third and final 140mm fan that Corsair supplied inside of the 750D. Another thing to point out is that the nine ventilates slot covers use thumbscrews to keep them and expansion cards in place.
On the left side of the tray you can see four plastic racks, these will unclip. They come out to allow 2.5" drive installation, and then clip back into the steel frame. On the right, there is at minimum 20mm of room, and the door panel doesn't have to slide over the wiring to close, it shuts like a car door.
Outside of the three 3-pin power connection from the fans, this wiring is what you get. All blacked out, Corsair gives you the power, reset, HDD activity, power LED, native USB 3.0, USB 2.0 and HD Audio connection to make with the motherboard.
Accessories and Documentation
Here is what you get with the 750D as far as hardware is concerned. There are four tie strips for wiring, six bags of screws, and a standoff to replace the helper installed on the motherboard tray. The bags contain 16 short fan screws, four long fan screws, and 28 SSD and ODD screws. In the bottom row you are given ten motherboard and HDD screws, SSD pan-head screws, and a set of four screws for no real use, but they did forget to send any PSU screws.
The manual can be found under the top piece of Styrofoam, and it also comes along with the terms and conditions of the two year warranty in the smaller pamphlet.
As you look at the hardware check list, you can see that they marked all the screws for their various uses, but even in the manual there is no mention of where you get the PSU screws from, they simply just were forgotten all together.
Just like on the back of the packaging, they also explode the chassis again in the manual to show you how to access or remove sections of the chassis.
As for the rest of the manual, it carries on like you see here. Each page has its own step or is addressing things such as the storage drive installations seen here. All through the manual you have these great images along with the multi-lingual text descriptions for each step.
The Build and Finished Product
I will be honest and say I don't like the look of the chassis when any of the bay covers are removed. I know this design is easier to produce, but I would still like some aluminum next to the drives or whatever I am installing here.
I pretty much stripped the case down to its essentials for this. Not only does this allow you to see the SSD trays much better, but it also exposes the large area in the floor for additional cooling. I am very pleased with the easy of the installation, and even when done quickly, it looks like it took hours to get here.
Around the back of the 750D, the rear I/O panel was easy enough to snap into place, but I did have to force the expansion slot supports inward to get the screws to align with the support bracket of the video card. To mount the PSU, I just stole two motherboard screws and got it in there for images.
Behind the scenes, the chassis wiring is simple to route and there are ample locations to tie it all down. Even when it comes to those from the PSU, there were no issues getting cables where they need to be.
With things all packaged back up and ready for power and testing, the 750D stands now much the same as when it came out of the box. Given the choice, I would remove the ODD and replace the cover, but I can definitely dig the view inside through the very large window.
Another bonus to the design is that even when powered, the chassis is almost inaudible, and the white LED lighting on the front would only be an issue in complete darkness. With any sort of lighting in the room, it is hard to tell if the LEDs are even on or flashing.
Let me start my closing arguments with the dislikes and get them out of the way. First of all, seriously, how do you forget about the need for screws to mount a power supply? In a $40 case I might let that slide, but for this amount of money, I can't just let that go. On a personal level, I am not a fan of what is left when the bay covers are removed. The sleek elegance of the front panel to me is destroyed once you break up what is otherwise continuous brushed aluminum. There are also some out of square and solidity issues I noticed. Along with the fact that I had to force the back of the chassis inward to mount my video card, when the door panels are off, this case will flex a fair bit. Nothing that will be detrimental in any way, but I have seen more solid cases from Corsair in the past.
On the plus side of things, the 750D has a lot going for it. It was one of the easiest and quickest builds I have put together, and even so, I still ended up with a clean and well managed setup. I like that they supply fans to go with this chassis that were capable of keeping my components at average temperatures, they also did it in near silence at 32dB of noise at a foot away from the chassis. I like the overall styling and I especially liked the internal modularity. While I opted for air cooling and am pleased with my results, for the water coolers out there, there is room for up to four radiators, and even options to move from 120mm radiators into 140mm solutions.
I think the SSD racks, while new and sort of fancy, make a great use of typical dead space in the case, and with the HDD racks out you can put the SSDs proudly on display through the large window and see it next to the rest of the kit you installed. In the end, I do like the Obsidian 750D and what it offers, there just are a few things to consider as I mentioned above, and with more knowledge, if you do plan to buy this chassis, you are better prepared for what you are getting.
Since I know after reading this Corsair will jump on adding more screws for the PSU mounting, I really can't hold that against them too harshly, and with the rest of the "issues" being based on personal tastes or certain phases of the build, which will likely only show up once for most buyers, I am left with a well priced chassis at $159.99 that I still think is worthy of that pricing. Corsair really does step up and make installation of the system very easy, and with the helper riser on the tray, you could even install the motherboard with the case in the upright position without much hassle. While the points are going to reflect the chassis as I received it, I really do like this chassis, and for those that like the sleekness of the Obsidian line, but done need the enormity of the 800D or 900D, this is definitely the way to go.
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