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  • stevel114 - Tuesday, October 21, 2008 - link

    Ok, I bought the case and put my system in it. It's a water cooled Asus 790 SLI with 2 280 GTX video cards. I have 2 Velocityraptor drives and a 1000watt PS. First, is it any louder than my Coolmaster stacker case, no mayber quieter since less fans are running. The loudest noise are the fans on the video cards and in the PS. The design keeps all the cabling inside for the most part, very clean look. Since my XFX 280 video cards don't have the bulge on top there was no problem installing them at all. I think the large cooling fan on top is keeping temps down over all. Blows on the video, chipsets and hard drives hanging on the side. Since I almost always take the side panels off the case to change parts this works for me. Things they could do better. Change the bracket for the cards to a stronger material, plastic not a good thing. Routing cables inside needs small hands. Once the PS in very hard to work cables around. Over all, a good case that is different. Aloha Reply
  • mindless1 - Monday, October 20, 2008 - link

    For my purposes of initial testing, hacking, troubleshooting, etc, an open frame case would be ideal. However Antec pretty much ruined this by using the bulky stylized support beams and fan on top. If they insisted on having a fan it should have sat at the front edge of the board and blew sideways instead of down.

    I'm sure I could wiggle my hand in barely but it's not the same at all, I can already wiggle my hand into a normal case.
  • kod4krome - Thursday, October 16, 2008 - link

    No I would not use this as my everyday case. But I have to say that I'm definetly going to pick one of these up for tinkering/building new machines. I think Antec is betting on people like myself who seem to be tinkering with a different machine every week or two... for that this seems like a godsend. I've come very close to buying a HSPC Tech Station but I think this looks like a nicer solution. Reply
  • nubie - Thursday, October 16, 2008 - link

    "All of the cables hang out the back of the case, since there is nowhere to hide them."

    I disagree, route them all to the left and down one of the "legs", it looks pretty crappy as-is. (FP Audio/USB/Power and LED connections are always on the 'bottom' of the motherboard, so route the wires there.)

    Honestly, for $140 they can't afford a bit of plastic or some zip-ties to hide these in?

    Interesting that they failed on a pretty standard video card, maybe if they raise up that 'fan shroud' thingy it would work better? Or make that fan thingy removable, so you can choose to run without it. I was this close to calling it an awesome case, but if it looks like this and fails on actually being able to hold components (the one thing it could do in trade for the ridiculous looks) then I don't know what to say but Fail.

    I am still waiting to see my dream case, which would have the back of the motherboard face to the front, so I can access all of the back panel connections. It shouldn't be hard to swap the PSU slot for a couple 5.25" bays, but I have never seen one.

    If you need a PC "test-bed", chances are you have already bought one. They are considerably cheaper, and made of aluminum or plastic.
  • MAIA - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    I just had an interesting conversation with a friend of mine while watching the several pics:

    Me - "Hmmmm, I can see where I can flip the burgers"

    My friend - "Wow, an upside down overcraft ..."
  • Linden - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    I am torn. Emotionally, I very much like the design and innovation of this Skeleton. As a system builder, tweaker, and overclocker, I see so much fun and ease of use with that frame-case (but maybe it's a pain in the but for high performance CPU heatsink mounting?).

    Noise. Hmm, what would it sound like? Maybe not so bad with a low-flow 120mm fan on the CPU heatsink and a passive cooler on the video card, such as the Arctic Cooling Accelero?

    This is definitely a case targeted for a limited demographic-- 1) no small children, 2) no inquisitive pets, 3) dust tolerant or willing to clean often, 4) ample desk/room space for the large footprint....

    But I want one!
  • Linden - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    Looking at the top fan frame assembly, it appears to be attached to the lower assembly with screw-type hardware, one for each arm. Is that correct? If so, what effort is involved in removing the fan and it's support assembly. If that is not labor intensive, that would be a solution for relatively easy installation of large CPU heatsinks and video cards with a "bulge."

    I am looking forward to the full review.
  • steveyballme - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    ... it's a case, for what? a pump?">
  • MadAd - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Now if only it could be extended to take 2 PCs in one cage it would be a winner. Reply
  • SpatulaCity - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I actually think it looks interesting in it's own special way, but I really like the fan on top idea. I do worry about the EMI since I have so many other electronics in the same closet.

    Are there any other enclosed computer cases hat have a fan on top like this one does? I utilize a duct fan to suck air out of my computer closet and I would like to hook it up to a main computer ventilation fan directly.
  • Ratman6161 - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I'm a dog person myself, but my wife is a cat person has four of the furry little ba$&@%)$. So in my house, that motherboard would be encrusted with a combination of cat hair and dust within about three seconds! Reply
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, October 16, 2008 - link

    I don't know... some of the dogs I know might mistake this for some sort of fire hydrant and decide to mark it as their own. Definitely not a case for anyone with pets or children, I think we can all agree. Reply
  • Ratinator - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    That heat sink near the audio it supposed to be bent and looking like it is lifting off the board or is that somethign you had to do to get the video card to fit? Reply
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I saw that only from the pics, never recognized before. No idea how that happend ;) Reply
  • Randybob - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    No cooling information? Reply
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Open up your current case, you will then have the same temperature your CPU would have in that case. Since it is open there is not much difference as the mobo would just lie on the table. The additional airflow from the top just keeps it at room temp, can't be less ;) Reply
  • judeau - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    If I opened my current case I wouldn't have a giant fan on top of it blowing air. I don't expect it to drop below room temp but I want to know how close to room temp it stays as you pump power through it.

    How loud is that 250mm fan? How much air does it push? In the article you say you wouldn't want it on your desk because computers are loud. How loud was this case compared to others? Obviously 3 vid cards will make it quite loud but is it possible to get a decent setup that woudl be quiet?

    I think Randybob is just confused since this review doesn't do any of the standard benchmarking/comparisons usually seen at anandtech like their recent review of the HTPCs which had temp readings, fan speed info and noise info.

    Overall I'm a little dissapointed there wern't more details about the case or any testing with it.
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    That's why it's called a blog. I want to test it a little longer. In general I use the cases for a few month to check their usability in daily life before writing a review about it.

    As for being quiet, I don't think you are going to build a silent PC with that case :D But the fan is not very loud at all. I will have these readings as well in a following review. Be sure about it...
  • judeau - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    My Bad. Didn't realize it was a blog not an actual review. Was showing up top where I usually find reviews and under the "More Reviews" section. It does say blog so I should have realized. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, October 16, 2008 - link

    Most blogs go to the lower area, but there wasn't much else up when I posted this and I figured it was interesting enough to warrant promotion to a "top of page" position. Seems like the number of comments support that, since most blog posts don't get more than 10-20 responses. Even if half of these comments are to say, "Wow, that is one ugly case!" LOL Reply
  • Crucial - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Why would you need that in an advertisement fluff piece? Reply
  • TA152H - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    This is the perfect case for people that never quite get around to putting all the sides of their case. You know, you don't want to close it until you get that new hard drive in, or replace the fan, or put the extra memory in. Of course, sometimes (often?), I never do anything with it, despite always having these intentions. Am I alone in this? Maybe not; this case seems to make me feel a little less stupid, since it might be made for those of us who have this failing.

    I am guilty of this just as often as I put the sides on. But this is better, since it allows convention to work better since the top is also, mostly, open.

    It may not be so attractive, but it's more attractive than my computer cases that I never quite get around to closing.

    Also, it would use less power than a normal case, for the simple reason you need less fan power to get air out of the case. But, you'd have to use low noise components, since it's not only failing to block EM radiation, it's also not blocking noise.

    I don't think it's for everyone, but I think it is for someone. That's really all any case can hope for.

    I like the idea, and think it will be a success.

  • piasabird - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    My first thought is it is just too large. I cant see putting this on top of a desktop ever. Instead of making really large computers we need smaller computers.

    The other thing is if you have children poking their fingers in to touch or move the wires all I can see is Zap or electrocution of children.

    Also in a well designed case, you can pull air through the case and cool off the Drives. In this case this does not seem possible. Then fan noise can not be blocked in an open case. Also Vibration noise can not be reduced in an open case. What you will not get though is the amplification of these items when inside a case.

    While this case design is interesting as a showpiece you need room for it and it is not children friendly.
  • djc208 - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    A 500W PSU and a triple SLI setup. Does that actually run properly, or was that just to show a PSU installed? I've read the 1000+ watt monsters aren't necessary but that seems a little small. Reply
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Finally one who actually saw that. Just wanted to show how you install a PSU. I tried PSUs with 80mm and 120mm fan to check if there is enough space for airflow. I am running that triple SLI with the PCPower 860W AT Edition. Reply
  • 7oby - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Seems to be a cheap copy of the Amiga Walker :-)">
  • Clauzii - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Thanks for the link :)

    Quite a trip back in time :D
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I don't see much similarity between the both... What has the one concept to do with the other? Reply
  • 7oby - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I did put a smiley, which means my posting shouldn't be taken literally.

    For those who've been in IT business for more than 15 years, it's verly likely they came in touch with the Amiga the one or the other way. At that time a x86 PC was always a cuboid either staying on the one side (desktop) or the other (tower). There wasn't even such thing as a midi tower let alone HTPC case. Only companies such as Atari, Apple, C=/Amiga were designing other shaped computers.

    Since a cube has the largest volume among cuboids with a given surface area, you could call that in a certain sense efficient. And companies who design efficient solutions are innovative even besides the aesthetic aspects. Showing other companies have innovative before.

    To sum it up: I think my post will put a smile on some geek's faces.
  • TA152H - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Actually, most professionals never came across an Amiga - it was a toy machine. Atari's were typical keyboard and computer design. Macs have always been strange shaped, and always slow and overpriced. We used to call them MacIntoys. Amigas were also pretty boring in terms of shape as well. A prototype doesn't mean the same thing as a production machine.

    x86 computers came in many shapes and forms (although none of them would be considered exotic). The PS/2 line alone had several different shapes, from the small Model 50/70, and the 55/56/76, the mid-sized desktop Model 90 (the machine I used mostly at the time) to the larger desktop cases like the 77. There were also towers, like the 60/80 initially, and the 95 which was shorter and wider. The 95 would be a mid-tower by today's standards. The point is, they made all the sizes they needed, and there were multiple sizes so you could get what you really wanted.

    The cases of a PS/2 were FAR superior to the junk you can buy today. Most of the geeks here would struggle to even lift a PC/AT or PS/2 Model 80. They were much more advanced back then too; the PS/2 Model 70 could be taken about without a screwdriver, and didn't even have a single ribbon, cable, etc... in it. You could take the entire computer apart in less than a minute.

    I collect antique computers and have PS/2s that were never used, and some PC/ATs, so I am not going on memory only. I had to lift a PC/AT the other day, and still am surprised at just how heavy it is. The keyboards were also very heavy.

    Stuff now is high-speed junk. It's fine because we replace it before it goes bad, most of the time, but my Tandy 3000 I bought for around 5K in 1986 still runs fine today, and I did things that you would never think of doing with today's computers. Back then, you actually had to have some skill to overclock. It was not as simple as changing BIOS settings and then pounding your chest like you've done something. You'd have to unsolder the crystal, and buy another one, and solder it in, and hope you didn't screw anything up. On some old machines, before the PC, to do upgrades, you'd have to cut electrical connections, and run wires and solder them in for certain upgrades. Uggggh. But, my Tandy 3000 went through this a few times, and still never complains, and has been running overclocked (10 MHz) by 25% almost since the beginning.

    New machines are fast, and they are cheap, but, in terms of quality, they are much lower. It's a good tradeoff though, since computers only have a limited useful lifespan for most people. Also, they are much easier to move. The weight of old computers is unreal.

  • kondor999 - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    Your sort of 'professional" is what made me leave Tech and go to medical school. You are completely out of touch with modern tech, aren't you?

    Overclocking a Tandy 3000 by 10%? Swapping crystals? Who the Hell cares?

    And if you think it doesn't take some skill to overclock today - you're hopelessly uninformed. You ever build a custom liquid nitrogen cooler for that Tandy? No - I suppose not. Do you even know what a Peltier cooler is?

    Maybe you should pull your head out of your ass, stop screwing with 25 year old useless junk (like that Tandy) and learn something about the current state of the art.

    Jeez, I'm 42 - but you sound like my grandfather. The only people who still think the Amiga and Mac were toys are bitter old fossils who fail to recognize that both the the Mac (for its brilliant interface) and the Amiga (for its innovation in using seperate chips for graphics and sound) were instrumental in creating the modern PC that we know and love today.

  • Pythias - Tuesday, October 21, 2008 - link

    Nerd Rage! Reply
  • Clauzii - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I have a PS/2 Model 30. Still works and yes, can be taken apart faster than any modern PC :D Reply
  • TestAccount - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Contrary to popular belief, the PC was more of a toy machine than the Amiga based on game sales.

    The Amiga's professional sector was video (editing / rendering / broadcast graphics). So quite a bit of professionals came across the Amiga. If any of you remember the Newtek's Video Toaster you know what I am talking about. Also the "channel channel" as I used to call it, aka the guide channel on cable, was run on Amigas. Every now and then when they would update the guide, you could see the Workbench in the background.
  • TA152H - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    You're using pretzel logic. Everything on a PC sold better than on an Amiga. So, considering the huge installed base of PCs, naturally even games sold better. Proportionally, especially back then, PCs were the business machines, and Amigas were much less. I never saw one in a business in my life. I'm not saying no one used them, but they were by no means something most people came across as the original poster had said.

    I'm not knocking them, by the way, they just weren't business machines. I liked the 68K line a lot, and I hated x86 assembly with a passion. The 68K was much more elegant, but the operating system for the Amiga was primitive compared to OS/2, and they simply didn't have the quality of software available for it. And, of course, with IBM being so important back then, connectivity with mainframes was very important as well. I don't think the Amiga had a 3270 emulator, but maybe it did.

    It's a pity that everything is based on the x86 now, arguably the worst instruction set from that era. It's a real irony that the worst one won, because of a poorly thought out decision by IBM to use a clearly inferior processor (as compared to the 68K). Now we're stuck with it :-P.
  • kondor999 - Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - link

    BTW, my La-7 will eat your Ta-152H for lunch - anytime, anywhere baby! Reply
  • emilyek - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Is Antec trying to create a liability lawsuit machine?

    People will spill their Mountain Dew in it.

    Or perhaps people's babies or pets will decide to poke around in it while it's running.

    Seems like a bad idea to me.
  • strikeback03 - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Unfortunately Antec can't make sure its customers are not stupid, so they might have to throw a label on the box that says something to the effect of "If you have kids or rodents don't buy this case". Reply
  • Griswold - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Agreed. But they can protect themselves with a huge red sticker on top of it saying "do not pour liquids on your computer, keep out of reach of your children and pets and do not poke the little gizmos with a pen or similar objects". :p Reply
  • Risforrocket - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Meh. Too open, too unprotective of expensive and delicate computer parts. And it's not really cool enough to overcome those faults. I won't buy one. Reply
  • mmntech - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    It's probably a dust magnet too. They've had cases like this for ages and in the past, they've not been recommended for permanent use. I definitely wouldn't put this in a house with kids. Reply
  • greylica - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    This is a great innovation for overclockers, but need more attention on details like those of the VGA fans. Probably a 120MM Tower willn´t fit into the case too.
    Another great Idea is to put a grid outside the unit for cover, only to avoid some problems with curious persons that can´t resist to put a finger where isn´t alowed.
    (Touch memory when the system is running ?:P )
    To improve better cooling, a big fan without a duct can´t help a lot, most of the airflow is lost, then we prefer 4- 80X80 or 90X90 MM fans in the top with plastic ducts and temperature control. (tpc controller)
    But well, this is a great change and an art piece for pcs.
    Like some naked motorcycles, this atr case could be improved as well to the point we can admire a piece of art inside the desk.
  • 4wardtristan - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    for such a space age design, it doesnt look that spacious Reply
  • Martimus - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    "An open case like this does not have any EMI protection, which means in the worst case you will have problems with radio and/or TV reception when the system is on, particularly if it's near your stereo/television."

    I looks like a Faraday cage to me. It doesn't look very susceptible to EMI to me.
  • Griswold - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    You dont seem to be familiar with the faraday cage concept - that or something is wrong with your eyes. :P

    Otherwise you would know, that it has to be enclosed entirely by a conductive material, be it solid or a mesh. This thing has huge holes on all sides and therefore it will neither be protected from outside EMI nor will it keep EMI contained.
  • Aluvus - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    A Faraday Cage encloses all sides with (usually) a metal mesh. This case has no shielding on the top area where the motherboard sits(superstructure looks to be mostly plastic, and is very open regardless), and the drive area is open on 2 sides. The case will provide very little protection from EMI. Reply
  • Goty - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    Not enclosing all sides of the case just means it would radiate preferentially from the open sides. To completely block all emission, the system would have to be completely enclosed.

    I honestly don't see EMI being a big factor. How many cases do you see out there with windows in the side? Now, how many of those do you see causing any sort of noticeable interference with any other consumer electronics?
  • JarredWalton - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    Actually, I've seen quite a bit of problems with radio interference. In fact, my radio reception in my house is *terrible* - probably has to do with the number of PCs/laptops downstairs. The real question is: how many people still listen to or watch OTA radio and TV transmissions? About the only time I have the radio on is in my car these days, and I've been using cable or satellite TV for two decades or more. Reply
  • Spacecomber - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    I think that the problem is with more than just OTA radio/TV reception. Wires and other components in your electronic equipment can act as antennas in your electronic hardware and pick up (and transmit) this noise. This can add unwanted background noise to your HiFi, for example.

    I'm using a fairly well shielded computer as a music server, and I find that I have to be careful how some of the wires lay in relation to one and other in order to keep the background noise level as low as possible.
  • Screammit - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    My cable provider charges extra for HD capability, now that you can get OTA HD service on major networks, I just use that, as there is no loss in signal quality and I can't get comedy central in HD yet :P

    and I have definitely noticed a problem getting a signal with my HTPC turned on
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    Anyway, there is no reason to argue about it. In the European Union it is forbidden to sell products that aren't protected which means you cannot have any opening larger than 1cm². I am still searching for U.S regulations though but I am sure Antec can also bring some light into this matter. Reply
  • Spacecomber - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    I'm not an electronics expert by any means; so, I was wondering, how would one go about testing a case for whether it is susceptible to radiating electronic noise? I was curious about whether the case that looked like a kick bass drum might have a problem with this, as well (since the enclosure wasn't made of metal). Reply
  • shabby - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    Have you guys tried mounting tall tower heatsinks? I would hope theres enough space for them. Reply
  • Christoph Katzer - Tuesday, October 14, 2008 - link

    There is space for most bigger heatsinks. With some exeptional big ones you might have the same problem like we had with the gfx and you would need to install them later though. Just go like this, everything as tall as a normal size graphics card will fit perfectly. When it's taller it will still fit, but after the slide went back. It also depends on where exactly your CPU socket is located since some might sit a little higher (closer to the upper edge) some a littler lower. Reply
  • KeypoX - Monday, October 13, 2008 - link

    I like it... hello world Reply

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