Date: November 30th, 2009
Article by: Joe Anderson (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited By: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: In Win
<--CLICK FOR PRICES ON AN IN WIN MAELSTROM IN AMERICA
<--CLICK FOR PRICES ON AN IN WIN CASE IN CANADA
PRODUCT PICTORIAL AND WALKTHROUGH
At the rear, we can see that In Win has chosen to place the PSU at the bottom of the case. This arrangement is gaining popularity and I like it for the most part. Just make sure the chosen PSU has long enough cables to reach the motherboard components and peripherals that get installed. Just above the PSU are four grommeted holes for liquid cooling tubing to enter/exit the case. Seven expansion bays with vented, replaceable covers and a 120mm exhaust fan round out the features back here. The black metallic coating also covers the rear of the case, giving it a unified look and four thumbscrews secure the panels to the chassis.
Swiveling plastic feet will add a bit of stability to the chassis and also keep the PSU vented area from becoming blocked by thick carpet if the Maelstrom finds itself sitting on the floor. Rubber pads on the feet will protect fine finishes if it finds a home on the desktop. Let’s open up the Maelstrom and see what surprises In Win has in store for us on the inside.
After removing the two thumbscrews, the side panel can be remover, revealing the big 220mm LED intake fan. I couldn’t find anything in the way of fan speed or other specs for the fan, and its two-wire/four-pin connector precludes the use of monitoring software to determine RPM. I do know that the blue LED lighting can be turned on and off with the indicated switch.
Another unusual feature of this panel is its ability to mount up to six 120mm fans in lieu of the included 220mm unit. The alternate fan placements in the side panel are provided with rubber grommets to help isolate fan vibration from the panel and chassis. Users with specialty hardware or cooling needs my find this feature very attractive, the included fan will be more than sufficient for most users.
The meshed area is surrounded by sound deadening foam, and while this may have some effect on apparent noise coming from the Maelstrom, I have my doubts as to how effective it will be. This foam also makes an appearance on the bottom of the other side panel, as we’ll see shortly.
As one would expect from a full-tower chassis, the interior is quite spacious with room for all the hardware the vast majority of enthusiasts will likely need to install. The interior is finished in the same black coating as the exterior, and the motherboard tray has a cutout for CPU cooler installation/replacement as well as a legend to help the user get motherboard standoffs in the correct locations. The noise dampening foam only covers the back panel where it is visible in the photo, and doesn’t extend up behind the mobo tray.
The vented area on the floor of the case will supply airflow to the cooling fan of most power supplies, provided the fan faces down. Four black rubber bumpers provide support and vibration isolation, and In Win provides two extra for longer than average PSUs.