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2003 Winter Case Review Part 2: The ATX Avalanche

Cooler Master: ATC-201B-BXT, Continued

The ATC-201B-BXT currently only features two USB 2.0 ports that are located behind a sturdy aluminum door located on the front bezel of the ATC-201B-BXT. We would like to see Cooler Master add the 1394/Firewire, MIC and headphone jack in the next revision of the case.

The side panel features a nice thick window that is mounted to the side panel using Torx head screws. The window looks nice and is securely in place on the side panel. We would have liked to have seen the window covered with some plastic to protect the window during transit and installation, however.

What more can we really say about this case? We loved the MRO-16 and the ATC-201B-BXT is really no different from it. The case features a beautiful black, high gloss paint job, which is a great improvement over the silver finish that we saw in the MRO-16. The fact that this case doesn't have a door adds to the functionality of the case, in our opinion, as we are lazy and don't like to close and open the door all the time, since we frequently access our optical drives.

The big question is "Do I buy the ATC-201B-BXT?" or "Should I wait for the PAC-T01-EK when it becomes available early next year?" This is not an easy question to answer since we don't really know what the final feature set will look like. We expect that it will offer the front-mounted 1394/Firewire, MIC and headphone jacks that are sorely missing from the ATC-201B-BXT. Still, this case continues to stand the test of time and remains a highly reliable and elegant looking option for those who are seeking a case that offers performance and functionality. We have no problem recommending the ATC-201B-BXT, and consider it to be one of the best aluminum cases available. While it doesn't feature the aggressive styling of other models it continues to be a reliable and functional design worthy of consideration.