Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
While it seems like it has been forever ago since we looked at a Xigmatek chassis, looking back, it was only February last we looked at one of their cases when we saw the Spirit M. What we do recall is a chassis that did what they specified it to do, and with its modularity and cost effectiveness, it ended up winning us over. We hope the same can be said for this latest mid-tower chassis to hit our labs from them.
Today we take a look at a chassis that is a lot plainer than its original version from where it takes its name. The original Soundwave was a mid-tower, but as the name implied, it did sort of look like a Transformer from the front, however as far as we are aware that chassis did not transform into a cassette player. Today, with a new interior layout from the original, and while keeping the naming, the whole style has been changed so something much subtler and sleek to be more widely accepted. At the same time, some things have not changed, and it's almost as if Xigmatek is asleep at the wheel when it comes to making cases for today's market.
Enough of the good and the bad up front, we need to get back on task here. Today we are bringing you the Xigmatek Soundwave-A mid-tower chassis that offers quite a bit for a little investment, but is it enough? Stick it out as we know there are tons of buyers that love these mid-tower stripped down designs for mass system builds or for parents and grandparents to have something slick yet when budgets are involved, are still able to accommodate there as well. For those of you that this type of chassis hits home for, stick it out as Xigmatek may be offering what you are looking for here.
The Soundwave-A is a steel mid-tower that is painted black inside and out. It also offers an ABS front bezel, and where mesh is offered, it is made from steel. This chassis stands 465mm in height, it is 200mm wide, and is 450mm from front to back, weighing in at 3.78kg empty. Aesthetically this chassis offers a flat front panel that is broken up only by the mesh inserts and the bay covers. The top of the chassis is solid, as is the right side panel while the left side of the chassis offers ventilation near the back. All of this is sitting on thin plastic feet and for a basic design, it does still have a bit of a style to it.
Internally it can house two 5.25" devices, four 2.5" drives, and three 3.5" drives in the front. In the back, there are seven expansion slots, and the covers are ventilated, but all but one of them are breakout covers. The motherboard tray can house ATX, Mini-ITX or Micro-ATX motherboards, and the Soundwave takes a standard PS2 PSU.
Cooling is very basic, almost nonexistent out of the factory with just a single 120mm XOF fan installed in the back of the chassis. There is room in the front for an optional pair of 120mm fans, and at the side there is also room for a pair of 120mm fans. One thing to note, though, if you do want to install front fans, be sure to install all of your drives first, as the mounting for the drive bays will be blocked with fans in the front of the chassis.
Aside from the front I/O contents we also see that this chassis offers 165mm of room for a CPU cooler. GPU length varies. There is 300mm of room with the SSD rack side wall installed. Removing it then allows for 390mm of room for the top slots. They make no mention of PSU length as the bottom offers no optional fans, pretty much anything will fit. Also there is no mention of wire management room behind the motherboard tray, and while they do offer tie points, there is 5mm maximum of space there for wiring there, but the door is pushed out to help a little with more room.
What amazes us is that this chassis has been out to the public for a bit now, but via Google, any hits to shop for one are coming up empty. We were however informed of what the MSRP would be on this side of the pond. We fully expected this to be a sub $50 entry to the market, but looking back to the emails, we are pleased to see that this chassis is set to ask only $31.99 for the Soundwave-A mid-tower chassis. While you may have to wait for stock to show on this side of the pond, at least you aren't sitting there trying to pile up money trying to obtain it.
Chad's Chassis Test System Specifications
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