AeroCool X-Predator Evil
Published: 31st October 2011 | Source: AeroCool | Price: £124.99 Inc VAT |
Up Close: Front I/O, fan controller and side panels
Moving now to the front of the case and the front I/O and fan control unit. The front panel is angled at about 30 degrees from the horizontal allowing for ease of use from in front or above. The fascia gives the impression of Brushed anodised Aluminium or steel, but is in fact an adhesive plastic veneer. Centrally located at the top of the panel is the power button, with fan control knobs located symmetrically on the lateral aspects half way down the panel. Each controller is able to control 3 fans giving a total of 6 and although this could be increased with the use of splitters and adapters it'd be worth keeping an eye on the 10W rating of each of the controllers. In the middle of the panel we find the main I/O section, a generous 3 USB2 ports, accompanied by a single USB3 port are joined by an E-SATA and the usual mic and phono jack sockets able to support AC97 + HD audio. The XPREDATOR Logo graces the bottom of the controller fascia, with the whole unit being lit up in an Orange glow by two strips down each side of the fascia when the PC is powered up.
Both side panels are removable by means of thumb screws, the right hand panel giving access to the area behind the motherboard tray where there is ample room for cable management. Although more would have been appreciated, AeroCool have thoughtfully preformed 3 cable tie anchor points into the steel to help keep those unruly cables under control. The right hand side panel (rear of motherboard side) is plain with no fan mounts or ventilation holes, whereas the left side panel is rather more feature packed. 70-80% of the side panel is taken up with a Grey tinted window. The window is roughly square but with a rebate cut into it to mimic the lines of the front Orange mesh section. Rather than being rebated behind the panel the window is actually surface mounted on the outside surface of the panel by means of plastic rivets. The window has four areas of slitted ventilation slots and although no fans are included mounting holes are present allowing for the mounting of ether 4 x 120mm, 4 x 140mm fans. Don't like lots of small fans? No problem, you can also fit 1 x 180mm or even 1 x 200mm fans on the window panel.