Front panel with built-in vacuum tube and VU meter
Coolermaster always has a surprise or two in store with its front panels; these 5.25" bays are quite different in their functionality and appearance than those of their competitors. The same holds true for the company's latest progeny, the Musketeer III, code-named RF-5AD-SAB1.
With this device, Coolermaster is once again honing in on the issue of sound. Where its two previous models only offered optical displays, with the Musketeer III, vacuum tubes are employed to create a warmer, more harmonious stereo sound. Another element on the front panel is a VU meter indicating sound levels. The needle jumps in sync with the level when playing DVDs, CDs or MP3 tracks. You can even hear the needle topping out over the scale during loud sequences. Unfortunately, the volume control is a cheap-looking slider, which after only a short period of time began making a squeaking noise.
Function panel box
The Musketeer III front panel comes in a nifty-looking cardboard box along with a connection cable, screws and the user manual. A direct connection to the computer is only possible via the sound card stereo outputs. Installing a driver is not necessary.
Musketeer III specifications
Just like 60 years ago: an amber colored vacuum tube