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The Final Five: Gaming Cases Between $80 And $120, Rounded-Up

Building With The Raidmax Seiran

Raidmax's specification list claims that the Seiran is nearly 19” tall. But all of its added height comes from bits and pieces tacked on to the chassis, as we can see from the side. In fact, the case has almost no height to spare internally. Fortunately, the motherboard area is wide enough to make good use of its grommet-equipped cable passage holes.

Raidmax forgoes the older AC'97 connector, choosing instead to support HD Audio exclusively.

The Seiran ships with its 3.5” external bay adapter installed. If you prefer internal devices, you'll be pleased to find a standard faceplate in the installation kit. A removable faceplate converts the 3.5” external adapter for internal (hard drive) use.

All seven of the Seiran’s bay adapters appear identical, but are slightly differentiated by fan mounting options. Two bays have brackets for the single intake fan, and you can mount fans directly to blow cool air vertically against the installed drives.

There are a couple of drawbacks to mounting SSDs in these trays. The tray’s edge extends past the power and data connectors of 2.5” drives, making it impossible to use 90° cable ends. The power supply we're using exposes 90° ends on every connector except the last one on its cable. Also, our motherboard came bundled exclusively with 90° cables. It took digging up an old cable with straight connectors to work around this.

Our components fit the Seiran quite nicely, though there are still a few cabling concerns. Space between the motherboard tray and most of the right side-panel is too narrow to accommodate cables. Instead, they have to routed through the side-panel’s C-shaped protruding channel. Further, the lack of space above the motherboard for a cable pass-through forced us to run our eight-pin EPS12V lead over the board’s surface.

Placing our parts completely inside the Seiran exposed a minor fitment issue. Our CPU cooler occupies part of the space needed by the case's side-panel fan. We had to remove the fan for testing, decreasing noise but potentially increasing heat compared to the case’s intended configuration. We also noted that the original side fan is exhaust-only, lacking screw tabs on its opposite side to reverse it.

Removing the Seiran’s side fan also eliminates half of the light show. Enough space is available below the CPU cooler to replace it with a 120 mm fan, but we are only using factory-included fans in our round-up.

  • idroid
    Hell yeah!!! NZXT Phantom 410 FTW!!
    Reply
  • idroid
    Toms should do a review on high-end cases featuring EXTREME watercooling.
    Reply
  • dudewitbow
    idroidToms should do a review on high-end cases featuring EXTREME watercooling.
    the only tiny problem at the most part i see in that is that it would be slightly harder to test thermal efficiency, since its being cooled by water, rather than air + hsf so in a wc build, the thermal ratings will be extremely close.
    Reply
  • now try to find the best micro-atx case...
    Reply
  • amuffin
    The Antec Solo II is not a case meant for gaming.
    Reply
  • back_by_demand
    It would be nice to see a left-sided window case listing, there are definate advantages to a left sided window / upside down mobo config
    Reply
  • Crashman
    amuffinThe Antec Solo II is not a case meant for gaming.Well...Antec sent it anyway. Along with the Eleven Hundred. So they evidently had a plan.back_by_demandIt would be nice to see a left-sided window case listing, there are definate advantages to a left sided window / upside down mobo configDid you know that the reason many manufacturers abandoned the upside-down case was because some motherboard heat pipes supposedly didn't work right in that configuration?iknowhowtofixitBut, but, but.... The Phantom 410 is sooooo ugly...Eye of the beholder :)

    Reply
  • The Solo II would probably have done a little better with your LGA2011 / GTX580 setup, if Antec included at least one front intake fan. Any chance of a re-test with an added intake fan or two? :)
    Reply
  • antemon
    as
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  • antemon
    I'm a fan of smaller cases

    I have a qx-2000 case from aerocool. it's a nightmare for cable management and upgrading partsm but I like it

    can toms also do an in-depth article on smaller cases?

    particularly, I want a similar case as the qx-2000 but the PSU is mounted at the bottom so that adding items inside woundnt be too much of a chore.

    thermaltake armor a30 looks awesome, but still has a top mounted PSU
    Reply