Date: June 2nd, 2006
Article by: Joe Anderson (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Zalman USA
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INSTALLATION AND TESTING
The HD160 has a lot of features, but tool-free installation is NOT one of them. Granted, the only tool you'll need is a long Phillips screwdriver, but you'll need it a lot. For instance, to get at the two drive cages, you'll need to remove ten screws. Nonetheless, I'm very impressed with the interior design of this chassis. Between these two aluminum cages, four HDDs and one optical drive can be mounted. No accommodation is provided for a floppy drive.
Here you can see the standoffs for the cages. Besides the obvious airflow benefits, this space is also useful to route wires and cables. The cables for the front panel ports are modular, allowing the user to remove, for instance, the audio cable if it's not going to be used.
Cooling can be enhanced by installing an 80mm fan (not included) using the four mounting holes indicated by the red arrows in the photo. At this price, Zalman could have easily made this fan standard equipment. The standoffs allow plenty of room for the extra fan as well as a place to run/hide the front panel wiring.
Once the drive cages are removed, the first thing to go in is the PSU. This Zalman is your “standard sized” power supply, but there is plenty of room for a larger unit. The intake fan draws outside air through the side vents on the case, insuring that the temperature controlled fan operates silently. Next to go in would be the motherboard. Everything lined up perfectly and there were no interference issues between the exhaust fans and the large Karajan audio module on my DFI SLI-DR. This is the time to make all the motherboard connections and tidy up the wires and cables. With the drive cages installed, things will get a little tight, so you want to do as much wire management as possible before they go into the case.