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Thermaltake SD101 VP11821N2U Black Steel Mini-ITX Tower Computer Case 180W Power Supply
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: - really small and compact, only 8.2 L!
- but solid features: ITX mobo, included 180W psu, 1x 3,5inch, 1x 2,5inch and 1x 5,25inch drive bays, 80mm casefan, 2 halfheight PCI slots and USB 3.0 front connectors.
- powerful, adequate Bronze Plus 180W psu, with just the right amount of connectors
- included 80x15mm casefan
- max gpu length: 170mm
- max cpu cooler height: around 45mm, or 90mm without 5,25 inch bracket
-good ventilation, when not using a graphics card

Cons: - poor airflow, if a powerful graphics card is installed
- short ATX cable, long USB 3.0 cable
- no 5,25inch -> slim optical + 3,5inch bracket
- psu fan is audible in full load, when using a graphics card
- almost no room between a graphics card and a 2,5inch drive, so it chokes the gpu
- no cablemanagement hole from the bottom of the case to the area behind the frontcover (but there is one at the top)

Other Thoughts: size and features
its really small, but it uses one of the best internal layouts, to maximize the capabilities, and results in room for almost anything you want in an allround pc.
power supply
the 180W bronze plus psu is adequate, you cant really build a system in this case that the psu wont be able to handle. the psu has 3 SATA connectors, 1 24pins and 1 4pins mobo connectors AND 1 slim SATA power connector. this is for a slim optical drive, but it's a real shame Thermaltake doesnt include a bracket for the 5,25 inch bay to convert it to a slim optical + 3,5inch bay (InWin BM cases, which are the same cases, DO come with such a bracket, and it's a very handy one!)
noise
the 80mm casefan is practically silent in normal use. only if it spins to max you'll hear it, but that is only when you force it. the 40mm psu fan is more audible, especially in load. but that depends if you're using a videocard, like i do. with no discrete gpu, you wont hear this fan as well.
airflow
this is a con, but it also depends on the build. firstly, as already mentioned in other reviews, the airflow is NOT as the promo picture Tt provides: there is no real ventilation from the from of the case.
WITHOUT a videocard, the airflow should be good: the large vent in the side provides fresh air for the cpu cooler, and this is exhausted from the top by the 80mm fan. if you install a 5,25 inch optical drive, the airflow is hindered somewhat, but still good enough. also, under the 3,5inch drive there is ventilation, from which (i think) the psu gets some fresh air, since the intake of the psu is located near the bottom.
but
if you install a graphics card, things get complicated. i installed a Radeon 7750, which is the most heat-producing gpu this case (space-wise) can handle, and it got really hot, like 90 C... the graphics card is like a barrier that holds the heat in the lower part of the case. so the hot air is recycled by the gpu, but also but the psu. a blower could solve this, but there arent any halfheight ones. a better solution would be a hole in the bottom of the case, preferably with an intake fan.
also, there's almost no room between a graphics card and a 2,5inch drive: 5mm max..
cablemanagement
another slight con: the ATX 24pins power connector is very short: if you use a graphics card and a 5,25 inch drive, it's gonna be very tight to route the cable, when the connector is at the top of the board. the front USB 3.0 cable is way too long, and it's a shame there no practical hole in the front of the case, to route this one behind the frontcover (where there is quite a lot of room).
a good thing about the cables is, that the SATA power cables exactly line up with the place you can install the drives, so thats a pro.
quality
one minor con: build quality is solid, but not exeptional. but only the parts you see from the front are painted. the rest (back, interior, brackets) are grey. also the screws on the back are silvercolored, where i would have liked to

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Anonymous's Profile

Display Name: Anonymous

Date Joined: 02/27/14

  • Reviews: 1
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  • First Review: 02/27/14
  • Last Review: 02/27/14
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