Xigmatek Utgard Review
Starting of with the basics... Its a mid tower case, and quite pleasingly from my point of view is that its lines are very clean and simple, the designer was definately not taking anything stronger than Valium. Our case side panel has a large mesh section that can have up to 4x 120mm fans fitted or a 1x 200mm fan and all the mounts also have rubber grommets to help with keeping the noise down, but you can also buy a version with a clear windowed side panel should you prefer it.
There are 9x optical bays covering the whole of the front of the case which all have dist filters on the back. At the top of the front panel you'll find 4x USB ports, 2x eSATA, a headphone and a microphone port. The obvious power button is there but no reset button. With the wonders of Windows 7 you can set the power buttons secondary use to be rest if you use it so often you can not live without it. The top panel also has a pair of fan controllers each control 3 fans a very welcome addition to a case at this price point.
On the top of the case there is a large meshed panel which can be removed. It exposes an area that a a 2x120mm or 2x140mm radiator up to 46mm thick can be fitted. This is nothing new in todays day and age but lets remind ourselves that this case only costs £65... Finally manufacturers are giving us what we want without the need for mortgaging kidneys. Kudos.
Cracking the side open reveals yet more surprises, the first one being the internals are all powder-coated black, and the case ships with a Xigmatec 120mm exhaust fan, a 170mm roof fan, and another 120mm fan attached to the removable 4x hard drive mount that takes up 3 drive bays. The motherboard tray is not removable but it is covered in cable tidy holes, and a large cutout for fitting heatsinks on even the funkiest design of motherboard.
All 9 of the drive bays have tool less mounts, but its worth reminding you all that you could technically fit another 240mm radiator in the front of the case should you need to *wink wink*. The bottom of the case has a tool free mount for another 120mm fan and its always nice to see an additional dust filter for the PSU vents aswell.
All this talk of watercooling lets not forget to test this with our air system, we normally test our Q6600 with a Nexus HOC-9000 but yet again a case with a roof fan it doesnt fit. When tested with a Cooler master V8 temperature did not go above 50. Its hard to compare because of the new heatsink but with our pair of HIS 4870's at 50% fans they did not go above 73c. Thats the same temperatures that the In Win Maelstrom has just acheived even though the Utgard doesnt have any side fans!
Lets head over to the conlusion and wrap this up.