Manufacturer: NZXT

Introduction and First Impressions

The NZXT Manta is a mini-ITX enclosure that boasts better than average room for components and cooling, and is packaged in a rather unusual, rounded design.

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There is a reason for the Manta's somewhat bulbous appearance, and it's part of a recent trend in mini-ITX enclosure design; bigger is better. While you might think that mITX is all about fitting components into the smallest enclosure possible, there have been some recent examples of cases which expand the chassis to micro-ATX sizes (or above).

The Manta from NZXT is actually large enough to be a micro-ATX case, and its total volume exceeds their S340 enclosure; a full ATX design (!). So why on earth would you want a mini-ITX enclosure with that much volume? Three words: cooling, cooling, and cooling.

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As you can see from NZXT's graphic above, the Manta's protruding top and front panels provide a the additional space needed to allow for thicker cooling setups.

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Before we dive in for a closer look at the new Manta enclosure, let's take a look at the full specs from NZXT:


Specifications:

  • Motherboard Support: mini-ITX
  • Expansion Slots: 2
  • Drive Bays
    • Internal 3.5”: 2 
    • Internal 2.5”: 3
  • Cooling System
    • Front: 2 x 140/120mm (2 x 120mm included) 
    • Top: 2 x 140/120mm 
    • Rear: 1 x 120mm (Included)
  • Radiator Support
    • Front: Up to 280mm 
    • Top: Up to 280mm 
    • Rear: 120mm
  • Clearance
    • CPU Clearance: 160mm
    • GPU Clearance: 363mm 
    • PSU Length: 363mm
  • Power Supply Support: ATX
  • External Electronics:
    • I/O Panel LED On/Off
    • 1x Audio/Mic
    • USB 3.0
  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 245 x 426 x 450mm (9.65 x 16.77 x 17.72 inches)
  • Weight: 7.2 kg (15.87 lbs)

Our thanks to NZXT for providing the Manta enclosure for our review.

First Impressions

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At first glance the Manta is a departure from the typical enclosure design. The rounded panels are built around a standard rectangular frame, so it's really quite conventional underneath.

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The look from the front of the enclosure really shows off the rounded sides, and this will certainly not be everyone's favorite look - but anything beyond the norm tends be divisive in this market.

Continue reading our review of the NZXT Manta Mini ITX Enclosure!!

The enormous and flexible W100 Super Tower Chassis, some assembly required

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 25, 2016 - 03:34 PM |
Tagged: thermaltake, W100 Super Tower Chassis

The new Thermaltake W100 Super Tower Chassis is not for the casual user.  Not only does it ship in a flatpack, which means you need to assemble the entire case yourself but it is also very large; that is a full ATX P6X58-E WS motherboard in that picture!  Once fully assembled the case measures an impressive 677x310x678mm (26.7x12.2x26.7") and can support up to nineteen 120/140mm fans or radiators of up to 600mm in size.  There are only a measly ten 2.5/3.5" internal bays and three external 5.25" bays, almost enough to satisfy Allyn's minimum storage requirements.  The locations you choose for these drive bays is flexible, thanks to the need to assemble the case you can place the internal bays in the configuration you prefer.  It will take a lot of work to get a system going in this case but your choices are almost without limit thanks to the sheer size of the case.  Check out [H]ard|OCP's full review right here.

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"The W100 Super Tower Chassis is not small and it is not cheap. It even comes fully unassembled. It does however look to fit the needs of the most hardcore water cooling enthusiasts however. The W100 is likely the most versatile case we have ever reviewed in terms of fan and radiator compatibility."

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

CASES & COOLING

Source: [H]ard|OCP
Author:
Manufacturer: be quiet!

Introduction, Features and Specifications

Introduction

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The German manufacturer be quiet! is best known for their attention to silence. They are currently introducing four new models in their entry-level Pure Power series, which includes the Pure Power 9 400W, 500W, 600W, and 700W power supplies. Be quiet! is targeting these power supplies to budget-minded users for use in silent PC builds, office applications, multimedia and home theater systems. The new Pure Power 9 series will replace the Pure Power L8 series.

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All of the Pure Power 9 series power supplies are 80 Plus Silver certified for high efficiency (the L8 series is Bronze certified) and feature modular cables and a 120mm cooling fan. The power supplies are designed with dual +12V rails and incorporate a new active clamp and synchronous rectifier technology with zero voltage and zero current switching for increased efficiency. We will be taking a detailed look at the Pure Power 9 600W power supply in this review.

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be quiet! Pure Power 9 600W PSU Key Features:

•    Exceptionally quiet operation (be quiet! silence-optimized 120mm fan)
•    80 Plus Silver certified with up to 91% power conversion efficiency
•    Two +12V rails and four PCI-E connectors for multi- GPU systems
•    Active Clamp + Synchronous Rectification circuit design
•    Modular cable management with flat ribbon-style peripheral cables
•    Meets latest Intel C6/C7, ErP and Energy Star guidelines
•    Active Power Factor correction (0.99) with Universal AC input
•    Product conception, design and QC in Germany, manufactured in China
•    3-Year warranty

Please continue reading our review of the be quiet! Pure Power 9 600W PSU!!!

FSP on the inside and outside, the Hydro G 650W PSU

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 22, 2016 - 01:50 PM |
Tagged: fsp, HYDRO G, 650W, modular psu, 80 Plus Gold

FSP provides the insides to many of the PSUs you see sold from Corsair, Zalman, Antec and just about every other provider at some point in the past.  They also occasionally sell them under their own brand name, which brings us to the Hydro G 650W fully modular PSU that was recently reviewed at [H]ard|OCP.  The PSU has a single 12V rail capable of providing 649W @ 54.16A, with the four 6+2 PCIe connectors it will handle many dual GPU systems.  It comes with 80 PLUS GOLD certification and a five year warranty and is available for around $75.  FSP's experience shows in the design and performance of this PSU as it walked away with a Gold Award and hearty recommendations.

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"While FSP may not be a PSU brand that is on the tip of your tongue, we have been reviewing FSP computer power supplies now for 8 years, and the fact of the matter is that these units have been getting better and better over time. Where does the new Hydro G 650W fit into that progression?"

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

AMD Expands Wraith Air Cooler Lineup With More CPUs

Subject: Cases and Cooling, Processors | April 22, 2016 - 11:36 AM |
Tagged: Wraith, quiet computing, heatsink, cpu cooler, cpu, AMD Wraith, amd, air cooling

AMD has expanded the CPU lineup featuring their high-performance Wraith air cooling solution, with the quiet cooler now being offered with two more FX-series processors.

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Image credit: The Tech Report

"AMD has heard the feedback from reviewers and PC users everywhere: the near-silent, capable AMD Wraith Cooler is a resounding success. The question they keep asking is, 'When will the Wraith Cooler be available on more AMD Processors?'

We’re pleased to announce that the wait is over. The high-performance AMD FX 8350 and AMD FX 6350 processors now include a true premium thermal solution in the AMD Wraith Cooler, and each continues to deliver the most cores andthe highest clock rates in its class."

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The lineup featuring AMD's most powerful air solution now includes the following products:

  • AMD FX 8370
  • AMD FX 8350
  • AMD FX 6350
  • AMD A10-7890K

The Wraith cooler initially made its debut with the FX-8370 CPU, and was added to the new A10-7890K APU with the FM2+ refresh last month.

Source: AMD

Lian Li Announces DK-04 Standing Computer Desk Enclosure

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 20, 2016 - 10:20 AM |
Tagged: standing desk, Lian Li, enclosure, DK-04, desk enclosure, case, aluminum

Lian Li has officially announced their standing desk shown at CES 2016, and the DK-04 offers variable (powered) height adjustment.

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The DK-04 in standing position

"Standing desks aren’t just fashionable, they’re proven to be beneficial and healthy in multiple ways. Lian Li sought to design a new computer desk chassis in this spirit. Users can configure up to four different height settings, from 67.5cm to 116cm, for the desk to automatically adjust to at the press of a button. The DK-04 can serve as a standing desk for work and switch to a sit-down gaming desk in an instant!"

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The DK-04 lowered to sitting position

I had a chance to check out the DK-04 in person at this year's CES, and it was an impressive piece of hardware. My first question? How much will it cost, of course! Lian Li didn't have an answer for me back in January, but official pricing was included in today's annoucement.

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I checked out the DK-04 at CES 2016

The cost? MSRP is $1499, and the DK-04 will be available on May 10, 2016.

If you've priced ergonomic office furniture the $1499 price tag won't seem quite so shocking, especially for a powered sit/stand design made entirely from aluminum (don't forget this is also a PC enclosure).

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The DK-04 is also a full-sized PC enclosure under the glass top

Of course, in the world of PC components it's obviously going to require a specific use-case to justify an enclosure that costs as much as a fairly high-end gaming PC.

Source: Lian Li

Zalman's Z9 Neo White, ready to go out of the box

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 18, 2016 - 03:45 PM |
Tagged: zalman, neo, Z9 Neo

Neo is a popular appellation for computer hardware, from PSUs to motherboards and today another case from Zalman.  The Z9 Neo is a mid-tower case which can hold heatsinks under 200mm tall and GPUs of up to 420mm, perfect for the majority of builds.  The PSU mounts at the bottom and there is a dust filter to protect it, unfortunately one which slides to the rear, making it somewhat difficult to get at.  The case comes with five 120mm fans included, a nice bonus for those looking to be ready to run as soon as possible. Benchmark Reviews also determined it to be friendly for watercooling if that happens to be your preference.

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"Unlike it’s predecessors in the Z-series line, the Z9 Neo comes with a full length front panel door. Now if your old school, as I am, you probably shutter at the mere mention of a computer case having a door. But over the years, especially with the rise in digital mediums and digital distribution, I find myself using 5.25″ drives less and less."

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

CASES & COOLING

 

Author:
Manufacturer: Phanteks

Introduction, Features and Specifications

Introduction

Phanteks currently sells cases, CPU coolers, cooling fans, and PC accessories. They recently added the Eclipse Series to their case lineup, which includes two models, the Eclipse P400 and the Eclipse P400S (silent edition). Both the P400 and P400S are available with black, white, or gray finishes and can be purchased with or without a side window. We will be taking a detailed look at the Phanteks Eclipse P400S ATX mid-tower, closed-panel case (no side window) in this review.

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Phanteks Eclipse P400S Silent Edition ATX Mid-Tower Case
Satin Black, Glacier White, or Anthracite Gray
with, or without a side window

The Eclipse P400S silent edition case comes with an integrated 3-speed fan controller and two quiet 120mm fans (one intake and one exhaust). The P400S incorporates sound dampening panels on the front, top and both sides. And in addition to quiet cooling, the Eclipse P400 and P400S cases feature selectable, 10-color RGB LED lights at the bottom of the front panel for some interesting lighting effects. Two internal 2.5” SSD bays and two internal 3.5” HDD bays are included but there are no 5.25” external drive bays.

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Phanteks Eclipse P400S ATX Mid-Tower Case Key Features:
•    Mid-Tower ATX enclosure (WxHxD, 210x465x470mm, 8.3x18.3x18.5”)
•    Supports E-ATX, ATX, Micro-ATX and Mini-ITX motherboards
•    Very quiet case for noise sensitive applications
•    Sound dampening panels on front, sides, and top
•    Easily removed dust filters on front, top and bottom panels
•    Two included case fans (120mm intake and 120mm exhaust)
•    Three-speed fan controller included
•    (2) USB 3.0, mic and headphone jacks on the top I/O panel
•    Two internal 3.5” HDD / 2.5” SSD trays
•    Two internal 2.5” SSD mounting brackets behind mobo tray
•    Tool-free mounting for 3.5” HDDs
•    Up to 395mm (15.2”) for long graphic cards
•    Up to 280mm (11.0”) clearance (with optional 3.5” HDD cages installed)
•    Up to 160mm (6.3”) of space for tall CPU coolers
•    Price: $79.99 USD

Please continue reading our Phanteks Eclipse P400S case review!!!

Is there still a market for DIY watercooling kits? The Thermaltake Pacific RL240 surfaces

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 11, 2016 - 02:40 PM |
Tagged: Pacific RL24, thermaltake, watercooler

As you can see from the image, the Thermaltake Pacific RL240 Water Cooling Kit comes with some assembly required, it is not an AiO cooler.  Since it is a full kit it will cost you much more than a self contained cooling apparatus, at $284 on both Amazon and Newegg many users will not be interested in installing this cooler.  For those that are still curious, one of the benefits of the kit is that it contains everything you need, including the waterblock, reservoir and pump as well as the radiator and even coolant.  Unfortunately [H]ard|OCP's testing revealed the performance to be moderate at best, so the price premium is hard to justify, as you can see in the full review.

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"In a world now filled with All-In-One CPU coolers, Thermaltake takes it old school with a water cooling kit that has everything you need from A to Z. If cutting your hose to length and perfecting the layout and presentation of your cooling loop appeals to you, Thermaltake makes it easy with a one stop shop."

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Lian Li Debuts SFX-L PE-550 and PE-750 SFF Power Supplies

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 8, 2016 - 07:23 PM |
Tagged: small form factor, SFX-L, SFX, PSU, power supply, Lian Li

Lian Li has (rather unexpectedly) announced a pair of SFX-L power supplies, with the PE-550 and PE-750 small form-factor PSUs.

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Lian Li PE-750 SFX-L power supply

SFX-L is the slightly longer (hence the "L") version of SFX, and permits more powerful designs and larger, quieter fans than standard SFX. Of the two new models from Lian Li the PE-550 is an 80 Plus Gold PSU rated at 550W, and the PE-750 is an 80 Plus Platinum model boasting a whopping 750W from this tiny form-factor.

Lian Li has doubtless contracted the manufacture of these PSUs, as the post on SFF Network has concluded: "The 550W at least is from Enhance according to the UL number and the possibly the 750W based on the heatsink design."

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Lian Li PE-550 SFX-L power supply

The 750W model now bests SilverStone in the SFX power category, eclipsing their 700W SFX-L model shown at CES this year (and which is still not listed on their site). Just why anyone would need 750W for what would presumably be a mini-ITX system (limited as mITX motherboards are, with only one PCI Express x16 slot); but the benefits of SFX are certainly appreciated the moment one begins working inside of an enclosure such as the NCASE M1.

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The PSUs are fully modular with flat, ribbon style cables (PE-750 pictured)

Particulars as the pricing/availability were not yet known at press time. For full specs check out the links for Lian Li's product pages for the PE-550 and PE-750.

Source: SFF Network