In Win 509 Full-Tower Chassis Review

In Win impresses once again with another computer case in the 509 full-tower chassis that ticks all the boxes rather well indeed.

Manufacturer: In Win
13 minute read time
TweakTown's Rating: 97%
TweakTown award

The Bottom Line

In Win's 509 brings a new internal layout, has a multitude of water cooling options, and is large enough to easily accept E-ATX systems. The elegance and sleek exterior is pleasing to the eye, and its relative affordability will make it a huge success.

Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing

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With all the rage in Mid-Tower cases as of late, it seems rare that we are sent Full-Tower cases, but that did not stop In Win. While In Win is known for unique aluminum case designs, most, well outside of the realm of "standard" chassis construction, they have been striving to take on that segment of the market as well. While it may not be as out of the box as an H-Frame, D-Frame, or X-Frame, In Win delivers the same level of excellence is anything they make today. This level of attention to detail and use of premium materials will do nothing but benefit the masses of potential customers who may not like open air cases, and give them solid options when it comes to a "normal" looking chassis.

One of the best things about In Win is that they tend not to follow trends, but try to set them for the rest of the market, and the latest case we have been sent by them is no different. Of course, you can find many cases made of aluminum, and yes, tempered glass panels are all the rage right now, but we have yet to see a chassis like this before, all told. In Win and their engineers are giving users a new way of looking at not only how the interior can be laid out to take the best advantage of the space available, but also leave the front of the chassis wide open for three locations to place a radiator for those who prefer to water cool their components.

While we do have a special place in our hearts for In Win, as they have proven over and over that they are at the top of their game when it comes to chassis design, we hope with the introduction of the 509 Full-Tower chassis, that nothing has changed. This time, however, In Win has moved away from aluminum as its choice of frame material in favor of steel this time, but none the less, the In Win 509 on paper looks like something many will want to check out and likely admire. That all being said, let's see what this chassis is all about so we can deliver you our verdict on whether or not this 509 Full-Tower chassis is everything you want and been looking for all this time, but just hadn't found the perfect solution until now.

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The In Win 509 Full-Tower chassis comes in two flavors. There is the gray and black version we have been sent for review, but there is also a red and black version that is an ROG certified chassis, which sports red trim, and what appears to be an etching in the side panel displaying the ASUS logo and that it is an ROG Certified product. The 509 is made mostly of steel, but In Win has chosen to stick with the trend and use tempered glass on the front and left side of the case. The 509 is capable of housing E-ATX, ATX, Micro-ATX or a Mini-ITX motherboard, and has eight PCI-e slots at the back of the case. This chassis is 527mm from front to back, it is 235mm in width, it stands 578mm tall, and weighs in at 14 kg, and that is while empty.

Compatibility for video cards is at 370mm of room, and CPU coolers can be as tall as 188mm and still fit, covering just about every air cooler out there. The front of the chassis offers four USB 3.0 ports and HD Audio jacks, and there is a removable cover in the bezel to support a 5.25" drive or device. Inside of the 509, there is room for up to five 3.5" drives which are also 2.5" drive ready. Three of the bays are powered and wired so that you can EZ-Swap drives in the chassis, and there is also four additional location to which 2.5" drives can be mounted. The PSU used in the chassis needs to be a standard PS2 ATX unit, but without the removal of the EZ-Swap bays, the length is limited to 230mm.

Cooling can be a bit confusing, so let us try to take it slow, so it is easy to follow. Right inside of the bezel, there is room for a trio of 120mm fans or a pair of 140mm fans, and water cooling support matches the fan arrangement. There is a second section of the frame further into the chassis, and this too will support the same fan and radiator setup, allowing for a pair of radiators to be lined up in the direction of common airflow. However, there is a third option as well. Again the fan and radiator support is the same in this area, but this area is flat against the motherboard tray, between the bezel and the inner frame support. The back of the chassis will also support a 120mm or 140mm fan like the bottom will, and there is no reason why a radiator could not go in each location. Fresh out of the box, as shipped from In Win, there are no fans included, but that also means the user can control the amount of noise this chassis will deliver.

The In Win 509 is another out of the box design, and the layout is not typical on the inside to what most of us are used to. With that, retooling is needed to make such a chassis come to life, and that usually means that there is a bit of a price hike involved as well. Either color version of the chassis is shown to be available directly from In Win, where they are charging $185 for the 509 currently. As we look at Amazon for this chassis, we find only the ROG certified version at this time, but we do see a price of $182.79 with free shipping. Newegg has the best deal going right now, as there we find the gray and black 509 listed at just $179.99, and oddly enough, the ROG Certified version is more affordable at just $169.99. Considering the materials, the size of this chassis, and the lack of limitations, we feel that In Win is on point with the 509's price. To be honest, it is much less than we expected to see.

Chad's Chassis Test System Specifications


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While In Win does use plain cardboard to send the chassis to your door, the first thing we notice is that they ship the 509 on its side. On the panel, which we are calling the front of the box, we see the 509 E-ATX chassis name in the center, with the tagline and site address in fine print below it.

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The specifications are shown on the left edge of this panels, and there are six features listed across the top. The rest of the panel is used to display the chassis name again, above part of the In Win logo.

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This could very well be the front of the box, but nevertheless; the panel is used just to display the In Win name and logo.

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The last of the exterior panels has the chassis name and features listed on the left. The right side of it is used to mark which version of the chassis is inside and is confirmed on the product information sticker.

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Inside of the box, we find our 509 wrapped in a black cloth bag to protect the finished and keep the glass from getting scratched. Rather than using solid caps at the top and bottom of the chassis, In Win opts to use smaller chunks on all of the corners. The level of protection is perfect, and we found no issues or blemished with the 509; it is in perfect condition.

In Win 509 Full-Tower Chassis

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The front of the 509 starts at the top with a large section of black brushed metal, which includes the front I/O panel and the removable 5.25" bay cover. The rest of the front bezel is covered with dark tinted tempered glass, and we can clearly see the In Win name and logo showing through it off to the right side.

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The front I/O panel contains a pair of USB 3.0 ports on either side of the HD Audio jacks which run along the bottom of the brushed metal section. On the right side of that metal section, we find silver buttons for the power and reset of the system.

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Since the layout internally is different than most on the market, there is no fan support at the top of the 509, and is why we see an expanse of solid black steel here.

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The left side of the 509 is cladded with a sheet of dark tinted tempered glass to match the front, which uses thumbscrews to hold it in place. At the front of the chassis we see the gap which allows airflow into the chassis, and below the glass we see large plastic feet supporting the tower.

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The back of the 509 has the rear I/O next to the round mesh area which can be backed with a 120 or 140mm fan. Below those, we see eight gray expansion slot covers, room for the PSU at the bottom, and we also found a pair of thumbscrews holding the right side panel in place.

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The right side of the chassis is closed off along the front edge, but we immediately run into a section of hexagonal perforations which allows air to flow out of the right panel. The body lines are tight, and we see a matching pair of feet like what we saw under the glass panel on the other side.

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Under the 509, we can see that the feet take up a lot of real estate due to their size, but are pushed out against the sides for the best stability. Currently, the bottoms are plastic, but rubber feet come with the hardware. There is also a removable dust filter for the PSU and optional fan location, which slides out the back for cleaning.

Inside the 509

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The bezel utilizes tabs along the side of the steel frame to lock it into place, and we can see tabs on the bay cover for easy removal of that as well. The front of the case offers a white plastic section which is how the logo glows with LED lighting, and there is also a full-length dust filter for the intake fans.

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The first look inside of the 509 shows us that this is laid out differently than many other options out there. The wiring is tied tight to the motherboard tray, and as for the hardware, you will locate a thick plastic bag with the manual and goodies, floating freely outside of the chassis once you open the box.

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At the front of the 509, all the way at the top, we find the 5.25" bay which requires screws to mount a drive or various devices. The back half of the bay is cut short to allow tubing and wiring ease of access, and we also see the front I/O wiring entering the interior just below the bay.

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Outside the realm of cooling options, we find a removable drive tray mounted to the support rail and is made to allow the mounting of a 2.5" drive. Off to the left of the gray support rail, we find a trio of trays in a cage, and this is the EZ-Swap section, and it is removable if needed.

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Rather than offering room for fans and possibly a radiator at the top of the 509, In Win opted to install a pair of 3.5" drive trays. These, just like the EZ-Swap bays, will also accept 2.5" drives.

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The motherboard tray is not marked for the standoffs, but there are wire pass-through holes above it, three to the right of it, and a pair below it. The slots to the right that you see above the HDD cage are there for GPU support installation, but could also be used to rig up a reservoir too.

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If you leave the EZ-Swap drives in place, it restricts the amount of room for the PSU and will complicate connections on modular PSUs. To support the PSU, there is a tab in the motherboard tray which matches the height of the rail found nearest the outside edge.

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There is not much going on at the back of the 509. There is not a fan anywhere in the chassis, and the eight expansion slot covers are gray to match the internal frame and use thumbscrews for mounting.

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Behind the motherboard tray, there is plenty of room for wires, but we do find a lack of tie points in this chassis. At the left, there is a trio of drive trays to support 2.5" drives, but if you look closely, there are also holes to allow for fan and radiator support there as well.

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The front I/O wiring is longer than what we see in many cases, so getting them to reach inside of the case is of no concern. There are leads for the HDD LED, the power switch and the reset button, three SATA cables from the EZ-Swap bays, a 4-pin RGB LED controller cable, the HD Audio cable, and a pair of USB 3.0 cables; all black to blend in.

Hardware & Documentation

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In Win ships all of the screws and chassis hardware inside of separate bags with easy identification stickers on each of them. At the top, we have a bag with countersunk M3 screws for 2.5" drive installation, and the bag to the right of it has sixteen fan screws in it. At the bottom, we find a bag with screws for 5.25" bay and PSU mounting, while the last bag has the standoffs, motherboard screws, and a socket.

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On the left are four thick rubber feet which are to be installed into the plastic feet under the chassis. On the right, we see 3M adhesive plastic strips that get applied to the black steel GPU supports, which use the four screws to mount to the motherboard tray.

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At the top is a SATA power to 4-pin power adapter for the In Win logo on the front of the 509. If the motherboard does not support RGB control, this is how you have to power it. In Win also supplies ten zip-ties to manage the wiring, and also includes a USB 3.0 to USB 2.0 adapter for those motherboards without dual USB 3.0 support on them.

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The manual that comes with the 509 starts off with a parts list to identify and make certain you have everything needed to carry on. Following that, there is a step-by-step guide to installing the major components, but we do feel they could have shown the water cooling support a bit better in it. Otherwise, this manual has excellent images and text instructions to get even the most novice of builders through the process.

Case Build & Finished Product

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Without the need to fill the 5.25" bay with a drive or reservoir, the front of the 509 is identical to when we started. The mix of brushed metal and the dark tinted glass is sleek and elegant and is a look we enjoy staring at.

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For our build, we did opt to use the 2.5" drive bay which will show the SSD through the glass, and we even mounted our AIO on the inner support rails. We opted to remove the EZ-Swap bays, which does expose a large opening, but we are still very pleased with the finished product visible through the entire left side of the 509.

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Fitment in the back of the 509 leaves us with nothing to complain about. The dust shield snapped right into place, the card aligns properly and is supported inside to fight sag, and even the PSU nearly falls into place and screws in without much fuss.

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Behind the motherboard tray, we do have to be a bit more creative than usual. The tie points worked well to route the front I/O wires but left little anywhere else to manage the PSU wires. However, with the room there is here, we had no issues returning the panel to the chassis and closing it up.

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From this angle, it is tough to see inside of the In Win 509, and we like that about this design. It helps keep that sleek elegance to the design and allows users to see only bright LEDs, or you can add all sorts of internal lighting and increase the view once the PC is powered.

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Once powered, we can just make out the ZOTAC and Corsair names on the GPU and AIO, but there is no mistaking the logo and company name lit up on the front. The In Win name will always be white, but if the motherboard offers RGB control, the logo will run through colors matching the motherboard LED cycle.

Final Thoughts

The In Win 509 is pleasing in many ways. Initially, we loved the aesthetics, and with the choices of components we used, we did not have to break into the brushed metal panel to install anything to detract from the slick appearance. Everything about this design is intuitive and easy to use, and when it comes to air and water cooling support, we like the fact that it can all be contained up front and out of the way.

With the main frame and the gray secondary frame allowing each to hold a radiator, and the fact that you can install a radiator against the motherboard tray with LED ringed fans on it, it gives another thing to enjoy the looks of through the tinted glass side panel. The number of drive locations is superb, with many options even if you do remove the EZ-Swap bays as we did. The build went flawlessly and left us with no major concerns.

We also like the fact that this chassis does not ship with any fans. With the idea here being full customization, and a number of options available to the end-user, it is up to you as to how much noise this chassis will make. Also with the fact that the front is blocked with glass and the top of the chassis is solid, for those that gravitate to louder fans, the noise is shifted away from the user and makes jet engine fans more acceptable inside of the 509.

The modularity is key in a design such as this, and this full-tower comes with everything you need, including power adapters, USB converters, and even GPU support brackets to keep your card or cards straight as an arrow. Just be sure that this chassis is where you want it to be right away because once it is full of gear and water cooling, the sheer weight of this product makes it something you will not want to have to adjust often

While we did, and still do expect the In Win 509 to demand a higher price, the fact that it is somewhat affordable makes this chassis much easier to accept for the masses of potential customers. It being as big as it is, the material choices, the modularity, and the fact that you can get it in red and black with an ROG Certified version is just icing on the cake. The fact that you can have the gray and black version for just $179.99 is an easy pill to swallow in our opinion, and if you opt for the ROG version, you can save yourself another $10 off that price.

In Win is still ahead of the game when it comes to chassis design, and is not afraid to reach outside of the box with the cases they deliver. The 509 Full-Tower chassis is a perfect example of this and is a chassis we feel many will appreciate and purchase in the near future.

Chad's Chassis Test System Specifications

TweakTown award

The Bottom Line: In Win's 509 brings a new internal layout, has a multitude of water cooling options, and is large enough to easily accept E-ATX systems. The elegance and sleek exterior is pleasing to the eye, and its relative affordability will make it a huge success.

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Chad joined the TweakTown team in 2009 and has since reviewed 100s of new techy items. After a year of gaming, Chad caught the OC bug. With overclocking comes the need for better cooling, and Chad has had many air and water setups. With a few years of abusing computer parts, he decided to take his chances and try to get a review job. As an avid overclocker, Chad is always looking for the next leg up in RAM and coolers.

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