Date: June 22nd, 2010
Article by: Joe Anderson (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited By: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Thermaltake
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PRODUCT PICTORIAL AND WALKTHROUGH
The A90 certainly has a distinctive look and, while I was somewhat ambivalent about it at first, I must admit that it's growing on me. I do like the front panel I/O arrangement with a pair of USB 2.0 ports and an eSATA on the top of the case with two more USBs on the front surrounding the audio ports. The USBs are also nicely spaced allowing the use of larger devices without blocking the other port. Up top, the slotted/meshed area provides ventilation for the 200mm top exhaust fan.
The door swings easily on a pair of robust hinges and is held in place with a magnetic catch. The door conceals the three 5.25-inch and 3.5-inch external bays, but doesn't leave any room for bay devices with knobs, such as fan controllers or the like. Just below the I/O ports are the HDD activity and power status LEDs followed by the small, recessed reset button. Just below that is the large triangular power button and all of the ports, lights or buttons are available with the door in the closed position. Mimicking the top, slots and mesh provide air intake for the 120mm cooling fan behind the front panel. We should also get a pleasant blue glow from the fan LEDs through here.
The left side panel features a small triangular acrylic window with a beveled edge that will give a limited view of the interior. Also present is a vented area that will accept an optional 120mm fan for enhanced cooling in the expansion card area. The back panel is rather conventional (these days, anyway) with the PSU located at the bottom and seven vented expansion bay covers. Just below the 120mm exhaust fan is a peripheral locking device to secure your wired mouse and keyboard during LAN parties and a total of four knockouts are available for routing liquid cooling tubing in and/or out of the case. The side panels are secured with thumbscrews and, as we'll see during the rest of the review, the black finish of the A90 is extended to the rear, bottom and interior of the chassis, making for a very nice look inside and out.
The bottom of the case features plastic rails, with rubber feet, to elevate the chassis just a bit. This allows more breathing room for the PSU via the filtered air intake near the back panel. Servicing the filter will require access to the bottom of the case, but it's better than having to remove the PSU, as I've seen in some cases.