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Enermax case

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May 14, 2002 8:16:26 PM

I am building a new system and I am starting with the case. Why? Because Enermax makes a case with a car finish and it comes in black with a temp readout on the bezel and its only $400. Besides the fact that it is cool is there any legitimate reason to buy this case? Enermax CS-5190AL-061

Does anyone have one of these and if so are they worth it?

BTW, I am new so have a little extra patience.

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Anonymous
May 14, 2002 9:26:15 PM

Enermax makes very good products but i dont think the CS-5190AL worth 400$...
I have an FS710 server case (in fact it's from antec but it is the same) with an enermax alim EG365P-VE FCA and it really worth a little extra price since it's unbreakable and easy to use (ah, how wonderful hdd racks are!!!)

sorry for my english (i'm french!)
May 14, 2002 10:07:48 PM

I also have the FS710. It is a great case.
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May 15, 2002 1:58:36 PM

Okay, here's the first thing. Let's stipulate that the case is over-priced. It's not for the conservative and/or the faint-of-wallet among us, and it's not for the guy for wants to do his own case modding. It's not just a good, serviceable $50.00 plastic case with a couple of generic brushless fans ... it's something else entirely.

With all that out of the way ... it's a great case. It's a fairly small mid-tower (in height), but it also has ten drive bays, and you won't see many cases with these dimensions with that many bays. You won't need drive rails with these bays, not unless you wish to install more than three hard drives. It comes with five fans, three of which of which are adjustable, with room for two more.

It's surprisingly easy to work inside. The hard drive bay is removable, and the I/O back plate is connected to the motherboard tray, which slides out neatly in one unit. This makes it very easy to mount a motherboard, and the screw holes in the tray are precisely placed.

With the angled front, if you need to place the unit under a desk, it's much easier to access the CD-ROM trays or slots and still see what you are doing.

All the screws are heavily chromed, and you can disassemble the case in a matter of minutes. Such as when you wish to give it a good waxing with a high quality car polish.

The acrylic front panel is a quarter-inch thick, which is a nice touch.

In some ways, it's more of a conversation piece than anything else ("No, John ... that is definitely NOT a Dell.") But it is a beautiful case, and it does keep your devices cool, especially with the included cooling solution. Average temp of my processor at idle: 89F (32C). And that's awfully good for a 1.8GHz Pentium 4 with a stock heatsink (installed with a little Arctic Silver II, of course!)

I installed all the fans (two more Enermax adjustable), and have three aimed at the hard drives. The bottom 120mm fan blows in on the video card, and the top 120mm blows out. The two 60mm are for exhaust, and I have a 550W Enermax dual-fan active PSU. You'd think that this would be incredibly noisy; but it's not. With five fan adjustments, you can tailor the fan flow and RPM speed without sacrificing your ears. It doesn't take long to strike a balance between the fan noise and the best amount of air flow for the devices.

The front panel makes connecting devices on a desk a snap.

It's the best case I've ever owned. Again, it cost too damn much, and I could barely justify the expense to myself, even as an annual "treat". But I don't regret buying it, and I expect to use it for many years.

And if you wondered, yes .... the finish is spectacular.

Toejam31

<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
_________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
May 15, 2002 8:39:44 PM

So <i>that's</i> what you've been up to! I have been getting my new case together, also. Well, I just started Sunday, and all I have done so far was cut the vents out to leave unobstructed holes for the side and top fans. I will be transferring my components from my old case this weekend. Then I will begin the task of getting the HDD formatted and OS and utils installed.

BTW, do you have any comments about <A HREF="http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/modules.php?nam..." target="_new">this?</A>

Oh, and to make this relatable, I just bought the <A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproduct.asp?description=1..." target="_new">Enermax 01WB case</A> with 300W PSU. Nice case, lots o' room (9 bays) [<i>err . . . 10 bays</i>], and a decent price. I kinda wish the PSU was the 350W w/ dual fans, but ya git what'cha git.

I would have <b>loved</b> to get the 5190AL, but I just do not have the ability to spend $390 on a case, especially when all the components I needed, incl. case, cost less.

'Cuz, after all, it is the <A HREF="http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/modules.php?nam..." target="_new">Best F'in Case EVER!!!</A>

VSP

<i>Upon the occasion in which the defecation comes into contact with the oscillating ventilator.</i><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by VulcanSoulPatch on 05/15/02 02:13 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
May 15, 2002 11:18:58 PM

Hey, Vulcan-dude!

Yep, that's what I've been up to! LOL!

I've been messing around with it for the past few days, networking the two systems together, and installing games. I'm very nearly done ... still have to install a couple more applications, and add a few textures and filters to Photoshop 7. It's all gravy at this point.

The system isn't really much of an upgrade. More or less, I was just replacing my main rig, which I gave to my mother. It was time that she had a decent system, but she wanted one where all the bugs had been worked out ... and she refused anything except an Intel rig. She has no patience for working with a new system, especially one with a VIA chipset. It was hard enough just to convince her to give Win2K a shot. Overly suspicious woman, my mother.

I picked up a new joystick that I <i>love</i>, a Saitek Cyborg USB Gold. It's completely adjustable for the size of your hand, and much more accurate than my old MS Sidewinder. It gives fragging a whole new meaning! (Marching through Quake 3 or MechWarrior 4 with deadly precision can be a lot of fun! LOL!) I don't have to fight the &@#%! joystick now ... just the targets.

I see a ton of mixed reviews about my purty new Dalek case. Some people think that it's really ugly, that the slant ruins the appearance, and of course, that it costs way too much. But I've had nothing but good comments when people view the system in person, and no one has said anything about it being ugly. <GRIN>

The slant makes perfect sense, if you think about it. It allows for much more room in the case, and still have a small footprint. Another thing that I like is that there is a good-sized gap between the back of the optical devices/hard drives and the mainboard. The last Antec case I used was tall, but narrow, for all its size. Cleaning the case was a major chore, as the drive bay had to be removed in order to pop off the false front and remove the fan filters. This also meant taking out the video card, and carefully maneuvering around the capacitors on the mainboard, all the while yelling for a third hand to mess around with the fan wires. And due to the size of the fan holders, each aluminum filter had to be cut-to-fit with a dremel, or do without.

Not with the new case. I can get at all the filters in two minutes flat, and nothing needed cut or altered for the installation. Nor do I need to remove any devices to open the can. (The Antec 1030 and 1040 cans are nice looking, but getting the false front off is a world-class pain-in-the-ass, even with the drive bay removed! Damn plastic clips!!!)

I think that I am going to build a couple more of these; one Intel, and one AMD. I'm going to load them out with all the goodies, and then put them on display. With a cathode light kit, I expect a lot of attention when customers come in the shop, some of whom are avid gamers. I'm going to advertise them as Dalek Gaming Systems (with a nod toward our own venerable camieabz and the imperturbable Dr. Who) and see if they sell. I'll bet they don't last long on the display floor, especially the AMD system.

Now, a comment on the other post:

I wouldn't bother with setting up a dedicated partition just for the swap file with only one hard drive. I could see the benefit of creating, say, a 512MB partition at the top of a second, slaved disk strictly for the virtual memory. It would give slightly increased performance, and the file wouldn't become fragmented. But with one drive ... don't bother. Just set the file with a permanent size of 384MB to 512MB, and then forget about it.

Next, I'm sure that you are aware the new drive isn't going to show up as an 80GB. With the FAT32 file system, it's going to be more like 74.4GB.

I'd set up a primary DOS partition size based on the projected amount of space needed for the OS and any third-party programs + 4 GB of running room. If you install the majority of programs on another partition (all that <i>will</i> allow this) including <i>all</i> the games, in my experience, 7GB is a good, standard size. So you were in the right ball park, IMO.

After that, why not just two more partitions of 33.7GB, as to cut down on the amount of drive letters?

I'll bet that you'll find a use for all that hard drive space eventually! LOL!

If you are going to flash the BIOS with a boot floppy, I'd suggest a DOS 6.22 disk with the high memory managers REM'ed in the config.sys file (HIMEM.SYS and EMM386.EXE), or a Win98 startup disk with <i>everything</i> deleted except COMMAND.com, MSDOS.sys and IO.sys. Test the disk by rebooting the computer with it - you should get to the A: Prompt. This is more like a "pure" DOS disk, and eliminates the extra drivers and programs on the disk not needed just to reach the command line.

This will also give you the free space to extract the BIOS file and the flash utility on the disk, which is something that you can not do with a standard boot disk with Windows DOS, which does NOT meet the criteria mentioned on the website. Take a look at your current boot disk, and see how much free space is available on the 1.44MB disk. I guarantee that there is not enough to hold the extracted files AND the old BIOS file.

(Note: And you should <i>always</i> save the old BIOS ... always, even if you must boot with one disk, and then access the BIOS file and flash utility on a second floppy that contains room for the old BIOS.)

Hopefully, you can use the Alt+F2 method, which appears to be much simpler.

See ya!

Toey

<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
_________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
May 16, 2002 1:58:22 AM

I like plastic cases, they are quiet. Been using a Micron case and before that a Dell case for quite some time, both the same model case as produced by Palo Alto.

What's the frequency, Kenneth?
May 16, 2002 2:15:47 AM

Nothing wrong with them. I have a $30 plastic case for my Duron system, and it's quiet enough. But I was in the mood for something completely different this time around for a main rig, and this is the only aluminum case that really caught my eye. I figured if I was going to be willing to spend too damn much money on a case, I might as well go the whole hog. I checked out the Coolermaster, Sky Hawk and Lian-Li cases, and didn't see anything I really liked. But this Enermax case ... I just couldn't pass it up. Even though I have to live on beer and rice for a while! LOL!

Toey

<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
__________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
May 16, 2002 4:27:35 PM

As always, thanks for all of the info. You are a wealth of information!

I was hoping for the Alt-F2 method myself, but I am not holding my breath. I won't have a chance to do anything until the weekend, so I want to get all options available to me prior to leaving work tomorrow (being my ready access to the internet).

But right now work is breathing down my neck. I am hoping I get the chance to collect my thoughts and downloads tomorrow afternoon.

Thanks again!

VSP

<i>Upon the occasion in which the defecation comes into contact with the oscillating ventilator.</i>
May 17, 2002 2:15:52 PM

Thanx for the help, now I am going bargain hunting to find the best price.
!