Introduction, Specifications and Pricing
Back in spring of this year, we looked at the flagship chassis Thermaltake released for the Core series, the Core V71. The chassis was labeled a full-tower, but was much closer to a super-tower design. The main concept behind the chassis was to look cool, provide a thermally cool inside, and offer many ways for customers to customize the chassis to fit their specific needs, all while delivering a ton of water cooling capabilities. For those out there that really like the Core V71, but don't have the need or the space for such a large chassis, today is your lucky day, as we now have the mid-tower version of that chassis in our hands.
The Core V71 set the bar very high, even for a smaller chassis with a reduction in cost to follow. We just expect so much in the Core series after seeing a design like the Core V71. Fortunately, Thermaltake still delivers many, if not all, of the same favorable design elements found in the Core V71, even within much smaller dimensions. There is still E-ATX motherboard support, and there is still the modularity and customizability that we expect with the name "Core." Thermaltake also does a very nice job of keeping most of the water cooling options available in this design as well.
So, who is this little brother to the Core V71 that impressed us so? It is Thermaltake's Core V51 mid-tower chassis. For a mid-tower chassis, it sure doesn't feel mid-tower. You almost forget it isn't a full-tower, and that does not happen often, but with the ability to pretty much gut the interior (sans the motherboard tray), and even with a wider E-ATX motherboard in play, you will find more than enough room and options to suit your needs.
As we get up close and personal with the Core V71, the external similarities to the Core V71 are very obvious. However, while the specifications are indeed very similar between the two, the new chassis comes with its own internal layout and concepts that we are sure you will find to your liking.
As the chart displays at the top, this is the Core V51 chassis, and it is indeed a mid-tower chassis, as we can see by the 21.3" height, and not so much by the 22" depth and 9.3" width. The chassis is made mostly of SPCC steel, but there are bits here and there made of ABS plastic. All of the components except for the left side panel window are painted or dyed black.
This chassis offers two removable 5.25" bays, and there are two racks that will house up to five 3.5" or 2.5" drives (or any mix of five) hanging completely separated from the ODD bays. Just behind the bays, we find a motherboard tray capable of allowing the installation of mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX, and even E-ATX motherboards. Then, at the back of the chassis we find the eight expansion slots with the PSU mounted on the floor, and Thermaltake left the adjustable PSU support in the chassis.
Cooling is one of the Core V51's specialties, and we will explain why. In the front of the chassis, you can install up to three 120mm fans or radiators, up to two 140mm fans or the same in radiator support, or a single 200mm fan or radiator. The top of the chassis offers the same as we addressed, but also expands a little. There is room for three 120mm fans, but there is also room for three 140mm fans, or a triple radiator. There is also room for two 200mm fans there as well. In the rear of the chassis, there is room for a single 120mm or 140mm fan, while the bottom offers room for up to two 120mm fans or that same spec in radiator support. As you can see, options are abound for cooling, but as it ships, there is a pair of 120mm fans in the front, and a single 120mm fan in the rear of the Core V51.
There are some limitations (if you want to call them that), which will need to be minded when piecing together a build with this chassis. The CPU cooler can be no taller than 185mm in height, which leaves you with about ninety-five percent of the coolers out there to choose from. If you leave in the HDD rack assembly in the front of the chassis as it is shipped, there is only 310mm of room for video cards, but once it is out of the way, there is 480mm of room from the expansion slots to the front inner frame of the Core V51. They also add a limitation of 220mm of room for a PSU, but note how they mention a "bottom fan." That means the limitation is based on the hole the fan breathes through, and while longer units will fit, they may not align with the intake on floor of the chassis.
This chassis shows Thermaltake put a lot of thought into the design, and they still kept true to what makes a Core chassis what it is. Considering that we are able to find this chassis just about anywhere for right around $109.99, we feel it is just about right. We feel that by the time we finish our review of the Core V51, you will agree that they are on the right track with the Core V51 mid-tower chassis to meeting the demands of today's PC culture.
PRICING: You can find the Thermaltake Core V51 for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.
United States: The Core V51 retails for $109.99 at Amazon.
Canada: The Core V51 retails for CDN$206.58 at Amazon Canada.
- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging]
- Page 3 [Thermaltake Core V51 Mid-Tower Chassis]
- Page 4 [Inside the Core V51]
- Page 5 [Accessories and Documentation]
- Page 6 [Case Build and Finished Product]
- Page 7 [Final Thoughts]
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