Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
With a company such as FSP, we are still building an opinion on them and their entry to the case market. With only one chassis to base an opinion on, the CMT210, we feel that there is not enough information on hand to make an educated guess on what they are all about, or what the exact market share is that they are trying to accommodate. If we had to conclude from what we have seen already, we feel that with the chassis we looked at, FSP was a bit behind the times, since the CMT210 is an old school looking design, and did not offer the things which many buyers demand of their cases these days.
Although, there is always room to grow and try different ideas when you are just entering a segment of the market. While the CMT210 was a sufficient design for the average user, there were things missing which would have let FSP stand tall in the mid-tower market. In fact, this is the approach which has been taken this time, where modularity, hidden bays, a PSU cover, and lots of tempered glass is used. These features are what customers are looking for in a chassis, and it appears that FSP was not lost on this fact. So, already, FSP is swaying our opinion on what they offer in cases, and have done something which will make many people stand up and take notice.
The chassis we are going to be looking at is the CMT510 RGB from FSP, and it appears to hit all of the checkboxes. There is plenty of room for storage drives, most of the mess is hidden from view, and there are even accommodations for water cooling. While the CMT510 RGB delivers all of those things, there is also a fan and RGB lighting hub included, along with four RGB fans, which helps to take the chassis up a peg compared to the many other cases very similar to it. We are pleased to say, that at least FSP did not go to the same OEM everyone else did with the eight or so cases like this which were nearly identical in all respects. At least FSP is entering the market standing on their own two feet, rather than riding on the coattails of others successes.
The CMT510 RGB is made of mostly steel, which has been painted black, and all of the surfaces are textured. On three sides of the SECC steel chassis, one can find 4.0mm thick chemically tempered glass panels. Both sides of the chassis, as well as the front panel, are glass, with a high degree of tint to black-out the view on the front and the right side. The CMT510 is 491mm tall, it is 208mm wide allowing for 165mm tower coolers, and is 448mm from front to back. All told, the chassis weighs in at 24 pounds empty, and the bulk of that weight is due to the glass. Video cards can be 400mm in length, dependent on the cooling options, and if there is an issue with the CMT510, FSP covers the chassis with a two-year warranty.
The CMT510 will house an ATX, Micro-ATX, or a Mini-ITX motherboard, and offers seven slots at the back to fill with networking, video, and audio cards. Within the front, I/O panel, a pair of USB 3.0 ports, a pair of 3.5mm audio jacks, and the power and RGB buttons along with the activity LEDs, are all offered. The power supply needs to be ATX form factor to mount correctly, but this is true of nearly all mid-tower cases. The chart shows that there are two locations for 3.5" drives, both of which are mounted on the right side of the chassis interior. However, it explains that there are two locations to mount 2.5" drives, but it only partly true. Both of the HDD trays will also accept 2.5" drives, so it possible to use four of them in the CMT510.
Cooling is handled, right out of the box, with the use of four fans. In the front of the chassis, there are three 120mm RGB FSP fans, and the fourth is the exhaust fan hanging at the back. It is not until you look at the next section that we see mentions of larger fans used. The front of the chassis can take on a 360mm or 280mm radiator, which also means it will allow for a pair of 140mm fans there instead of the trio supplied. The top of the chassis does not have a fan, but near the back of the chassis, you could add a 120mm or 140mm fan. The back of the chassis is restricted to 120mm only, but a radiator can and will hang there too.
We assumed, as long as this chassis has been on the market, that it would be widely available. Sadly, this is not what we are finding on this side of the pond. The chassis was slated to cost just $90, and at that price, the value is high. However, when we looked to get one of the CMT510 RGB cases stateside, we find random sellers as the only source, and they are asking astronomical prices, somewhere near $140 at that. We realize that sometimes products do much better in select markets around the globe, and is it likely that other countries have much better access. While we will be basing our opinion on the $90 price point, as that is what FSP set as the MSRP, we do still have to keep in mind the market here in the US as well.
Chad's Chassis Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Maximus IX Code Z270 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: Intel Core i7 7700K (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: NZXT Kraken X62 (buy from Amazon)
- Memory: Team T-Force Night Hawk RGB TF1D48G3000HC16CBK
- Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 (buy from Amazon)
- Storage: Samsung XP941 256GB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: SilverStone SST-ST85F-G (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit (buy from Amazon)
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