Cooler Master Storm Sniper
Not to be confused with the smaller Storm Scout, Cooler Master’s Storm Sniper suits high-end gaming systems by supporting cards over an inch longer than ATI’s super-sized Radeon HD 5970.
The combination of support for an extra-long graphics card and a dual-fan radiator was, in fact, what caused us to initially select the Storm Sniper for our most recent high-end System Builder Marathon configuration, only to find out that adding a radiator really isn’t an option for many users. More on that below.
The bulge that exists on the mesh side panel is reflected on the opposite side, providing cavernous capacity for storing cables behind the motherboard tray.
The top-panel angles slightly forward for easier access from the front and provides power and reset buttons, a fan controller with center-touch fan LED control, eSATA connectivity, a headset, four USB connections, and a single FireWire port.
Mesh panels up front are backed by a fine screen to reduce dust, though these will obviously require regular cleaning to retain their sharp appearance.
An extra slot plate placed on the back panel’s right side is designed to hold peripheral cables securely, but could alternatively be replaced with one of the interface plates that accompany many motherboards. Also notice the rubber grommets at the top of the rear panel, which are necessary for installing an external radiator.
Server-style swing-out feet add stability to the base, though Cooler Master also includes standard feet in the Storm Sniper’s installation kit that reduce overall height by around half an inch.