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NZXT Tempest

PC Case Roundup: Spring 2008
By
NZXT TEMPEST SPECIFICATIONS
Case Type Size WxHxD Weight Cooling 5.25” Bays 3.5” Bays I/O panel Noise Approx. Price
NXZT Tempest ATX mid tower 212 x 522 x 562 mm 22 lbs 2x 140mm, 4x 120mm 3 1 ext. 8 int. 2x USB, 1x eSATA, HD Audio (on top) 40.5 db $110

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Specifications

The NZXT Tempest is all about airflow : the case comes equipped from the factory with two 140mm fans and four 120mm fans !

At 22 lbs, the Tempest was the second-lightest case in the roundup, but it didn’t seem cheaply made. The Tempest only supports three 5 ¼” drives, the least in our review group. However, it supports eight internal 3 ½” drives, tying the R240 Grace for the most supported drives in this respect.

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The I/O panel functionality is interesting, in that it is one of two in our review that has an eSATA connector, but doesn’t feature a Firewire connector like most of the other cases. The panel is placed on the top-front of the case, which is quickly becoming the industry standard location.

Unique Features

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What makes the Tempest unique is its incredible airflow for the price ; as mentioned earlier, it comes with two 140mm fans and four 120mm fans. The fans are surprisingly quiet, which is impressive when this many fans are used.

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Another unique feature is the tool-less hard disk mounting bracket, which places the hard disks at a 90 degree angle to the ground. This method allows the Tempest to host an impressive 8 hard drives. Its attractive angular styling also makes it stand out a bit.

Aside from these features, the Tempest is a fairly standard, good quality PC case.

Appearance, Fit & Finish

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The Tempest has a very clean, sharp appearance. In general, its design is very reminiscent of the Antec nine-hundred, but the angular styling and two long illuminated blue bars down the front edges of the case differentiate it from Antec’s offering enough to make it stand out visually. There’s a fair amount of plastic trim on the case, but it doesn’t feel cheap or flimsy — the case is well put together.

User Experience

The Tempest proved to be typical enough to set up and use. We always like a well done tool-less hard drive installation, and the Tempest didn’t disappoint.

The multitude of fans provides excellent airflow for your components, and what was even more impressive is that they were relatively quiet ! At 40.5 dB, the Tempest was the third-quietest case out of the six we tested in the roundup. It easily beat out the $250 Cosmos S in this regard.

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Our only pet peeve of note was the location of the Molex power cables that power the two top fans ; they dropped out right on top of the location of the CPU cooler. While the case provided cable routing options, the wires demonstrated an annoying habit of rubbing against the fans. If NZXT had wired these fans together to a cable that was routed to a location lower in the case, we would have been much more enthusiastic about it.

Even with this irritating issue, because of its high airflow, we think the NZXT Tempest case is an excellent value for $110. We are even going to recommend this case as part of our next system builder marathon.

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Top Comments
  • 15 Hide
    Gravemind123 , June 13, 2008 7:55 AM
    Nothing from Lian-Li, Thermaltake or Antec? In that price range you could review a nice case from any of those companies.
  • 10 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2008 8:06 AM
    Yep is a very poor roundup allright !
    Where is Antec Nine Hundred or the new Twelve Hundred and the excelent P182 ???
    The Cosmos S seems to be out of place here.... its in another league: Armor+, Silverstone TJ07B, Stacker
Other Comments
  • 1 Hide
    geotech , June 13, 2008 6:28 AM
    Nothing on the Thermaltake Armor?
    One of the best case designs and plenty of room and features.
  • -4 Hide
    bf2gameplaya , June 13, 2008 7:16 AM
    Every one of those cases is butt ugly, unwieldy and depressing.
  • 15 Hide
    Gravemind123 , June 13, 2008 7:55 AM
    Nothing from Lian-Li, Thermaltake or Antec? In that price range you could review a nice case from any of those companies.
  • 10 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2008 8:06 AM
    Yep is a very poor roundup allright !
    Where is Antec Nine Hundred or the new Twelve Hundred and the excelent P182 ???
    The Cosmos S seems to be out of place here.... its in another league: Armor+, Silverstone TJ07B, Stacker
  • 3 Hide
    otheos , June 13, 2008 8:22 AM
    Simple is an uknown word in the aesthetics of the east.
  • -3 Hide
    scherfistv , June 13, 2008 8:32 AM
    Lazy review, the guys from TOM's couldn't find more attractive PC Cases? It's all made in "China"-like?
  • -2 Hide
    TiberiumSoldier , June 13, 2008 10:27 AM
    poor Roundup.. no Enermax Chakra/uber Chakra no EZCool .....
  • 1 Hide
    SinisterCanuck , June 13, 2008 11:12 AM
    All mid tower cases... not one Full Tower! I haven't purchased a mid tower case in nearly 8 years for any of my builds because they are too crammed for my liking. As stated by other commenters, where's the Thermaltake Armor? Where's the Antec Twelve Hundred? etc. These were nice looking cases, but they are all middle of the road as far as I am concerned. You need to do a cases revisited or an enthusiast case round up! ...please do that
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2008 11:13 AM
    I have my doubts about your praise on 3R System case. I have similar model. Exactly the same inside structure but without the remote control, display and with different front side.

    First of all, it's not that well-built. Sides bend and that inside metal (Al?) is really soft. And if you want to remove the front there are like 6 almost unreachable screws to be unscrewed which is pain in the a**.

    Fans are really quiet though.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2008 11:28 AM
    only Cosmos S look good to me.
  • 2 Hide
    ilovebarny , June 13, 2008 12:30 PM
    well its not bad information but they really could have done a better job picking out cases to review.
  • 1 Hide
    Dogsnake , June 13, 2008 12:40 PM
    Funny how you keep referring to the Antec case(s)but do not include one in the review. Why buy an imitator when you can get the real thing?
  • 1 Hide
    HyperBladeST , June 13, 2008 12:53 PM
    No need to add the good old 900 and P182. We all know they're good and it's not a coincidence that the NZXT and the Raidmax looks so much like the 900 ;) 

    As for the 1200 : it's a bigger 900 so there's nothing much to say about it.

    But yeah it would have been more appropriate to use case from all company to make a round-up.
  • 0 Hide
    spaztic7 , June 13, 2008 1:28 PM
    It would be really cool if for another roundup they did all of the Maximum PC cases that won a "Kick Ass Award". Yeah you may be using info from a competitor, but it would make for one really interesting read to see who would be the best of the best!
  • 0 Hide
    retratserif , June 13, 2008 1:29 PM
    I have the Cosmos S, its the best water cooling case out there next to the Mozart. You can easily get 2-3 Radiators in and installed with no mods what so ever. Plus the heat sensitive power button is very impressive. It may not get you laid, but it sure will fit into any modern or high tech lifestyle. The Nine Hundred is quite old in comparison to these cases. I have not seen a new stacker... I think the Cosmos is closest thing to them.

    I was skeptical of the Cosmos s at first. But after everything went in without a hitch, I had to really appreciate the work that had gone into this case. The thing I like the most is the rails. Its not that easy to move a 60+ lb case with 2 rads and at least a liter of water.

    Good job guys. I enjoyed the round up. I would like to see a more practical round up in the future for more budget PC's. To see more cases that have good practical usage and lower prices. They should all have 2 120mm fans minimum though. 40$-100$ cases.
  • 0 Hide
    Kurse , June 13, 2008 2:04 PM
    No Antec 900 or P182? Certainly two of the best cases on the market.
  • 1 Hide
    Lumberboy , June 13, 2008 2:12 PM
    Why do people love the Thermaltake Armour cases so much? It was the hottest case I ever owned. When I switched to my CM 690 my cpu temps dropped 10 degrees.
  • 1 Hide
    MU_Engineer , June 13, 2008 2:12 PM
    I also find it funny that the Antec Nine Hundred was mentioned about five times (and the NXZT Tempest is a clone of it) but was not in the review. How about a Nine Hundred vs. Clones comparison?
  • 0 Hide
    byebye , June 13, 2008 3:24 PM
    not toward this but everyone needs to start measuring the distance between the processor and the wall. because i want a IFX-14
  • 0 Hide
    xsamitt , June 13, 2008 4:19 PM
    We really need a list of full tower cases.........High end if you wish............Pretty Please.

    Most of the cases you picked out I wouldn't consider at all.Mid tower is not where things are going....Some cases have 10 Expansion slots.......I belive we need a review thats with the current trend...as we live in the now ...not the past.
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