Inside and Out
This version of the Gamer Infinity CrossFire HD is housed in an NZXT tempest case, and although we’ve not previously reviewed it, it’s remarkably similar to the Antec 900 gaming case we reviewed
over a year ago. The key design trait is the liberal use of 120mm cooling fans, and the Tempest includes no less than six of them to cool the high performance innards, with two fitted in the front panel (in a frankly bizarre intake/outtake setup), two exhaust fans in the top panel, one outtake in the rear and one intake in the clear plexi-glass window that shows off the case’s interior.
The case itself is made of steel, so expect it weigh more than you’d like ( a lot more), but it’s finished to a very high standard with all the panels, both plastic and steel, fitting together well – something that sadly even some ultra high end premium cases have a problem with achieving.
The front of the case again apes the Antec 900, with the entire height of the front panel consisting of mesh panels to improve airflow. However, there’s no dust filter system of any kind, so if you plan to keep the system on the floor, be aware that it’s going to get caked inside pretty rapidly. One cool inclusion is the blue led lights running down the full height of the front fascia on either side, providing some subtle yet attractive lighting.
The top panel of the case includes all the external plugs we’ve come to expect, with two USB 2.0 ports, audio and mic ports and even E-SATA, as well as power and reset buttons with a good degree of movement and tactility, although there’s no sign of power or HDD activity LEDs, which seem to be becoming rarer and rarer.
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So externally at least, there’s not a lot to complain about. A steel chassis makes for a sturdy (if heavy) base, with lots of cooling, a well featured front panel and even some nice exterior lighting. And remember that due to the customisation available through Cyberpower’s website, there are well over a dozen different cases to choose from if the NZXT doesn’t take your fancy, with choices like the Lian LI PC-A10 and CoolerMaster Cosmos
also available, although at a pretty heavy cost premium.
Internally the Gamer Infinity CrossFire HD follows the modern case layout with the PSU at the bottom and the motherboard pushed into the top corner of the case. We’ve seen previously with the Zalman GS1000
that cases with this thermal layout can achieve significantly better thermal performance, and this combined with the frankly enormous combination northbridge/PWM cooler on the P5E should mean that 4.0GHz overclock is stable.
Sadly the interior suffers from the usual letdown of steel cases with a drab matt grey finish, although that’s somewhat alleviated by the included twin 12” UV cold cathodes that light the case and UV cables included. Although sadly only the top cathode is properly fitted, with the second left loose to dangle about.
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The included UV reactive cabling certainly looks good when the PC is powered up, but we had to wonder about the inclusion of an IDE DVD-ROM drive. There’s no almost no difference between the price of SATA and IDE drives, so why stick with the old fashioned interface?
Expansion-wise, there’s plenty of room for extra hard disks, with the NZXT Tempest having room for a whopping eight HDDs (although the motherboard only supports six SATA ports).
Elsewhere the case is immaculately organised, with cables neatly clipped and hidden away to improve airflow. It’s just the UV reactive SATA and IDE cables that have missed the cable tie treatment, and hang untidily around the case, which is a shame as the rest of cabling is so expertly finished.
Our only other complaint about the interior is the PSU mount, which on our review sample had distorted and bent during transit, although this is more NZXT's fault for not including sufficient mounts strength in its design in the first place. Again, you can always spec a different case.
Bar these few minor complaints though, the interior of the Gamer Infinity CrossFire HD has been very solidly put together, with everything installed correctly and, for the most part, tidily. Cyberpower even ship the PC filled with packing air sacks to stop components shifting in transit - a nice example of attention to detail to ensure the hardware reaches you in working condition.