Cooler Master Media 280

Written by Wil Harris

February 5, 2007 | 10:43

Tags: #280 #case #cooler #htpc #master #media #tower

Companies: #coolermaster

Exterior

Let's take a look at the front of the case. As we mentioned, it's brushed aluminium, and it's designed to be very stealthy, with three (count 'em) fold-down flaps to hide the various ports and drives, as well as a optical drive cover akin to that seen on older Lian Li cases.

The middle flap, which is curved, pops open to reveal an empty 3.5" bay. You can fill this with something like a card reader, or even a floppy drive if you're that backward. You could, technically, put a hard disk in it, but you wouldn't really want to open that bay and have an ATA bad boy staring back at you.

At the bottom of the case, the flap pulls down to reveal a few front-mounted ports. There are 3.5mm jacks for microphone and headphones, which have both AC'97 and HD Audio connectors depending on the motherboard you have. There is also two USB, FireWire, and the reset and power buttons.

At the top, there are three 5.25" bays, two of which are hidden and one of which is stealthed. The stealth drive should work with any standard drive, since the button mechanism is actually one of the best we've seen on a stealth cover. However, getting the drive in is rather difficult, but do-able with enough elbow grease.

Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior
Here you can see the middle portion of the case, which reveals the open 3.5" bay. You can also see, beneath it, the built-in cover for housing a VFD. The 281 version of this case comes with a VFD and IR receiver pre-installed, whereas the 280 leaves out these components for you to add yourself.

Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior
You can see here where you can mount the IR receiver.

Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior
The stealth mechanism looks pretty good and, unlike others that we've tried, doesn't require hours of adjustment to get the button lined up correctly.

Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior Cooler Master Media 280 Exterior
These are the case feet which, since the case can be oriented two ways, unscrew and can be mounted in two different places. You can see that the bottom of the case has a 120mm fan mount, so that when the case is mounted as a desktop, this becomes a side intake.
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