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Thermaltake "SHARK" Series Enclosure Review

By: Mike Wright | Other Cases in Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: Oct 19, 2004 4:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 9.0%Manufacturer: Thermaltake

The Interior



One glance at the inside of the box immediately shows us the roots of the main design. If you'll recall a review I did not long ago of the Chenming ATX-602 series enclosure, you'll see more than just a passing similarity. In fact, the case is a clone of this very design, but with some changes along the road to make it a distinct "Thermaltake" concept case.


Oh, and if you're calibrated eyeball has noted a slight cant of the case toward the front side, this is normal with most Thermaltake enclosure designs. This is caused by the weight of the heavy front panel. While it is awkward when the case is empty, once the components have been installed it balances the enclosure and you won't have any problems (or leaning) afterward.


Lets take a quick look at some of the primary areas of this enclosure.



As noted earlier, you have room for up to five optical devices. Whether you happen to be a CD/DVD burning guru or one who has plans on creating that special 3-bay custom water reservoir, you'll be set with plenty of room.



Since the enclosure is designed to hold five opticals, why not use the same thinking for the physical drives? You'll find space for five hard drives to be installed in the lower part of the drive tower. This will give you room for a large primary drive and a four-drive RAID array. But while the space for drives is nice, that isn't the only thing of note with regards to this little area of the box.



Each and every hard drive tray has preinstalled EMI grommets. They not only help reduce EMI, they are also made primarily of rubber so work to reduce vibration of the drives caused from high spindle speeds. This was an item that is often left out of enclosures using this type of hard drive tray, but it is good to see that the folks at Thermaltake care about our equipment as much as we do.



If you take a close look inside the main compartment of this enclosure you'll see something that always makes me happy; a removable motherboard tray. Just remove the two thumbscrews by the red arrows and you can lift the tray out of the box. I have discovered that no matter how large an enclosure is made, it is still easier to get major components installed when you have a removable tray. This was a feature that was included in the Chenming base design and it is good to see Thermaltake thought to keep it in their own creation.



Moving back to the PCI slots shows that this Xaser series case keeps with the concept of tool-free peripheral card insertion. The green handle is in the unlocked position in the photo above, but it easily locks into place after you've installed all your AGP/PCI cards. The slim band will also handle tall cards with no problems.


Of course, if you're just afraid of innovation and just want to do things the old fashioned way, screw holes are provided to allow for a more conventional installation method.


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