Sometimes cheap is good enough – Ron Gould
I was building a computer for my daughter and needed a case and power supply. Being a very frugal person (cheap bastard), I happened upon this case from Newegg.
It includes a 400W power supply. Having been frugal (cheap) on my previous computer build, I had purchased another Powmax case from Newegg about 9 months ago. I figured for $32 US, it fit my budget and if there were any problems, I’d just work them out later.
The case specs are 185 mm wide, 420 mm deep, and 412 mm high. That comes to roughly 7.25 inches wide, 16.5 inches deep, 16.25 inches high. The box claims 4 5.25″ external bays, 2 3.5″ external bays and 4 3.5″ internal bays. Along with 2 USB 2.0 ports, there is a microphone and a headphone jack on the front panel.
The case construction is of fairly thin steel – it feels light but not cheap or shoddy. Almost all of the steel edges in side have been rolled over so there are no sharp edges. Even the few that weren’t rolled were not sharp enough to worry about cutting yourself.
Well, the case arrived by FedEx a day ahead of schedule. I opened the box and was immediately pleased with what I found. As you can see from the picture, it is just your basic beige mid-tower. When I opened it up, I was surprised at the interior. It actually had 5 3.5″ internal bays, for a total of 7. Looking at my previous case, the extra bay seems to make sense from both a material and a manufacturing point of view.
I was also surprised to see the case allows for the mounting of 5 80 mm case fans. Two are up front and blow directly on the hard drives, two are in the back next to the motherboard backplate and they punched out holes to mount a fifth fan where the bottom 4 PCI slots are located. As more and more motherboards include more features that eliminate the need for PCI cards, this is a great place to put a fan.
The power supply is a plain looking one. It has 4 Molex connectors and 2 of the smaller 4 wire connectors like floppy drives use. It also has an ATX connector and a 4 pin P4 plug. There is also an auxiliary connector with 6 wires that looks like half of an AT motherboard power connector.
The motherboard tray is removable with four screws. But after detaching it, I found that the power supply has to be removed to remove the tray. So another four screws and the power supply and motherboard tray pops out.
Mounting and installing everything went quickly as the case comes with the necessary screws and standoffs. There are ample mounting options for a variety of motherboard styles.
This is the case with everything installed:
- Abit KT7A motherboard
- Sony CDRW, Maxtor HD
- Wireless NIC
- Turtle Beach sound card
I had problems with some previous cases and this motherboard because of the large capacitors getting in the way of the CD drive in certain slots. This was not a problem with this case.
All in all, this is a GREAT case and power supply for the money. It is my second experience with Powmax, and I am sure it won’t be my last. If you are looking for a cheap case that really isn’t as cheap at the price suggests, you might want to look into one of these.