Front Mounted Ports: Take a Joy Ride On The Fan Bus

Musketeer - LLC-U01 - Coolermaster, Continued

In addition to the three VU meters, also included are two sliders from which you can control the voltage to the fan (fan speed) and the audio output levels. The LLC-U01 is very stylish and well constructed. The LLC-U01 is made from steel and uses a four screw mounting scheme, as do most 5-¼ bay devices. This mounting system is much better than others that only use two screws, because once mounted in your case the LLC-U01 is very sturdy.

The LLC-U01 and all of the accessories.

The back of the unit includes four clearly marked connectors: Temp; Power; VU; and Fan. The Temperature connection allows for the connection of a single flat thermostat to monitor the temperature inside the case. The location placement of the thermostat will affect the accuracy of your temperature reading with the LLC-U01.

A close up of the front of the LLC-U01.

The connection of the fan to the LLC-U01 is designed to handle a couple of fans requiring up to 18 watts of power draw. So, it is possible to connect multiple fans to this connector. Coolermaster has gone the extra mile to encourage this by including two fan extension cables that support both a three pin and a four pin fan. The three pin extension cable offers additional connection support to the motherboard for fan monitoring. While these cables appeared to us to be a little short, they were sufficiently long for our testing setup.

The connection to what Coolermaster calls "The Sound Pressure Meter" is made via a modified slot cover out the back of the computer to the sound card via a pass through cable. The cable and bracket are included. While this may not be the most elegant way of handling this, it is clearly the most functional and flexible way.

The back of the LLC-U01.

The Musketeer performed well in our tests and we like the look of it. The combination of traditional analog style gauges and fewer knobs is a look that many people will like. While the features and design are clearly the areas where the Musketeer scored well, the value department is an area where the Musketeer fell a little short. The Musketeer is expensive and there are clearly other devices that offer more features and flexibility than does the Musketeer; however, these don't match the elegance found in the Musketeer. For those wishing to stick with the Coolermaster brand, the Aerogate II appears to offer more features and flexibility which might compare a little better to some of the other fan bus devices available. Still, we can recommend the Musketeer for what it offers, as it is unique when compared to other fan bus devices.

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