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Benchmarks & Final Analysis
For comparison purposes, we used the SilverStone Redline Series RL06, the Riotoro CR500, FSP CMT510, and the Phanteks Eclipse P300 TG. The cases used for comparison are of similar sizes and feature mixtures, and all have one or more tempered-glass side panels.
With the PC under full load, the temperatures on our budget quad-core Core i5-7500 processor, running at 3.8GHz, maxed-out at 40° C over the ambient temperature of 25° C. Due to the sheer amount of unobstructed airflow and close proximity of the intake fans to the graphics card, our GPU temps peaked at 50° C over the ambient temperature. These results put us right in the middle of the cases we used for comparison.
We took sound level readings with two off-the-shelf dB meters from two different angles. The M400 registered 30.2dB at idle and 35.9dB under load. These results could have been better but it seems that the sound deadening properties of a tempered glass side panel were somewhat cancelled out by the thin acrylic front fascia. Also something to be considered, the chassis emits a somewhat annoying "wheezing" noise as air is drawn in through the small ventilation holes in the sides of the front panel.
We determine acoustic efficiency, also referred to as "cooling-to-noise ratio," by averaging all five of our tests to determine a base value.
On the one hand, the M400 looks like a decent value, based on thermal and acoustic performance. Conversely, the lack of features, cheap construction and strange design choices make this case a poor value, even at $95. Thankfully for cost-conscious enthusiasts, chassis such as the Riotoro CR500 TG and the SilverStone Redline Series RL06 not only offer better features and / or performance, they are priced significantly less than the Master M400.
At the time of writing, this chassis carried a retail price of $95. At that price, we felt that even if this chassis was inferior to some of its competitors, it might be worthy of your consideration at a significantly lower price point. Luckily, Micronics and Newegg are currently offering this chassis for $70 for a limited time. So, those of you that had any inclinations of purchase this case, now might be a good time to do so before the price goes back up to its original MSRP.
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