The next thing any budding case purchaser wants to know is how good the insides of the system are. So, how good is the interior of the Rhodium?
Well, again the overall opinion is a good one. The cases’ innards are standard enough to be familiar to even the simplest of bit-tech
readers, while also proving to be accommodating enough for the most demanding.
The first thing to notice is the side panel, which is incredibly heavy thanks to the thickness of the all-steel construction, is fastened in with thumb screws. Easy access assured, pulling off the panel reveals a small switch held down by the side panel which acts as a safety measure and allows the PC to register when the case has been opened if the power is left on.
Inside the case, there sturdy construction of the steel box holds true again and the first thing our eyes were drawn to was the massive, thick support bar for the PSU which gives plenty of support to any over-long power supplies you may want to shove in there. Unfortunately, the support bar also caused a few problems with system installation – but we’ll come back to that when we get to testing the case.
A quick scan reveals that the Rhodium is an utterly toolless design. The drive bays at the back of the case are held secured by a clip system which, while a little stubborn to close sometimes, is easy to use – just flick the switch and pull the flap up.
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The case also comes with a tidy little rail organiser inserted into the empty HDD cage which carries all the rails attached to it. Whether you decide to keep it in the case once your rig is installed or whether you just throw it away is up to you, but no matter what choice you make it’s a very handy addition to the case. The Rhodium also has another 120mm system fan installed in the back of the case, but judging from the sheer weight of the steel side panels we were starting to think that the ventilation may be a serious issue for the Rhodium case.
Checking out the rest of the case shows a few nice additions, namely a white cable clamp which is attached to the side of the HDD cage and which can be used to hold down a number of wires, great and small. Still, cable management can only do so much – so without further kafuffle, we’ll move on to testing to see just how much of an issue ventilation will prove to be in the Revoltec Rhodium.
Testing the Rhodium
When we test a PC case, we’re looking for success in three key areas; heat, noise and ease of system installation. To make sure we have a reliable and consistent set of results, we make sure we use the same rig each time and that the components in the system are not used for anything other than PC testing.
Our selection of hardware, which is detailed below, is intended to be a fair representation of the hardware strains a case will be subject to while, at the same time, giving a decent amount of stress for the case to cope with.
Intel Pentium XE 955 (dual-core, 3.46GHz)
Sapphire Radeon X1600 XT Ultimate
MSI P6N SLI Platinum
2x 512MB Corsair XMS2-667
1x 250GB Western Digital WD2500 7200RPM
Asus Silent Square Pro
Now, as we’ve mentioned previously, system installation wasn’t as smooth as it should have been with the Rhodium and we quickly had to change our system to suit the case. The problem arose with the PSU support bar, which was a little too low and thick to cope with the massive Asus Silent Square Pro heatsink and meant we couldn’t mount the motherboard properly.
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We tried a solutions until we found a heatsink which we considered to be a fair representation of bit-tech
readers, whilst still giving a comparable amount of cooling. In the end we settled on replacing the Asus Silent Square Pro with a Scythe Kama Cross CPU cooler, which uses an unusual branching design with a fan located in the centre.
We don’t think the heatsink will be a problem for most people as the PSU support bar only intrudes a centimetre into the case from the side panel at its thickest point and the problem is more to do with the overly large size of the Asus Silent Square Pro.
With a new cooler mounted to the case, we carried straight on with mounting the PC inside the case and were happy to find that the rest of the process was simple and straightforward. There isn’t a tremendous amount of room to move about inside the Rhodium, but using a long-shafted screwdriver is enough to alleviate any problems and though the motherboard sits quite snugly in the finished rig, mounting it was never particularly wrist-breaking.
For cable management purposes, the system comes with a few cable ties to group wires together with, as well as the aforementioned cable clamp to hold some of the biggest groups of wires in place.