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This review is from: Corsair Obsidian Series 650D (CC650DW-1) Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Case
Pros: 1. Quick release side panels
2. Easy to remove and clean air filters
3. Superb toolless HD cage setup - contrary to some complaints it works perfectly
4. Superb toolless optical drive system
5. Built-in fan controller - works well, I have had no problems with it
6. Very quiet case even with fans on max
7. Cools extremely well without being noisy
8. Quick release front panel (grill) is brilliant
9. It has a classy look that is beautiful - not a weird gamer look
10. Great window side panel - again it is beautiful
11. Mounts SSDs without any problem
12. Top hot-swap bay works very well and is SATA3 compatible. I am using an SSD with it right now
13. Contrary to some complaints, paint job is great and does not flake. However at two corners, tiny areas of paint did come off (but these are VERY tiny and hard to see)
14. Front brushed aluminum panel is beautiful and does not scratch easily - again very classy
15. front and top fans are large 200 mm - has three included fans and you can add more
16. USB 3.0 front ports are great and easy to access
17. Removable hard drive (HD) cages are brilliant and so convenient.
18. Toolless PSU mount is well thought out and works great
19. Large enough for any aftermarket air cooler - I have the Noctua NH-D14 installed with no problems
20. Motherboard set-offs are well-done and you can install your MB without adding any additional set-offs
21. Large cut-out for MB so that you can easily mount your after-market cooler.
22. Rubber grommets for cabling and excellent cut-outs for cable routing
Cons: 1. Fans move slow so they are quiet even on high speed, however I don't know if more high-end fans would work better. That being said the included fans work very well.
2. Front fan does have a slight whine / vibration - I can't hear it when the front panel is on
Other Thoughts: IMO this is the most beautiful well-thought out case made in this price range and is a mid-tower. There are some better full-tower cases but they are huge and cost more. I personally do not need a full-tower case and they are gigantic. The 650D is more than large enough to do just about anything you want easily.
Everything in this case with the possible exception of the fans just works and is exceptional. I have a Noctua NH-D14 cooler and the fans on it are higher quality but still, the included fans are very good.
This case is so versatile and easy to build in. It is so easy to build in and the toolless interior and the quick release side panels save soooo much time and are soooo convenient.
The top hot-swap bay is brilliant and again so convenient. I use a 128 GB OCZ Vertex 4 for a backup drive. It reads and writes at nearly 500 mb/s because the hot-swap is SATA 3 compatible. I can quickly remove the drive if necessary for safe keeping of my data.
Overall, it is just the best, most well-thought out mid-tower available. I would buy it again in a heartbeat.
I suggest removing the bottom HD cage to facilitate better airflow. This still allows you to have three internal HDs and one external at the top hot-swap bay (which is enough for most people). This allows the case to cool as well as any case on the market (about at 3-5 degree difference because there are no obstructions to the fresh air flow coming into the case).
This review is from: Noctua NH-D14 120mm & 140mm SSO CPU Cooler
Pros: I read dozens of reviews before I bought my D-14 and it can be confusing. However, now that I have owned it for over a year I am convinced it is the best cooler for the money available. My CPU temp hovers around 35F with an ambient temperature of 82F. I have never seen it over 40F. My motherboard temps also hover around 35F - 40F (ambient of 82F).
Even now in the reviews I have read I believe only the Corsair H100 can beat the D-14 - and not by much and it is more noisy. Several new coolers keep coming out, but the D-14 continues to beat them.
Speaking of noise, I was confused by the reviews when I read the different DBA levels. The reviews show the noise levels all over the place. However, the unit is very quiet and depending on your case, you may not even hear it. My Corsair 650D fans are more audible than the D-14 fans.
The quality of the Noctua fans is second to none. It is quite possible that the Noctua fans are the best made.
Cons: As many have mentioned , it is big. Make sure that you check your dimensions.
Other Thoughts: The Silver Arrow and the Plantek are the only comparable coolers available unless you go with the water coolers. The water coolers are good but the H100 is more expensive and more noisy though it will beat the D-14 slightly.
Don't compromise and buy a cheaper cooler like the Hyper 212. Your components are too expensive to subject them to unnecessary heat. Yeah the cheaper coolers work but you truly get what you pay for. The D-14 is quality from the mounting system to the included accessories and most importantly its performance.
Pros: Extremely fast reads and writes:
557 mb/s read and 507 mb/s writes per ATTO
With TRIM enabled I have experienced zero degradation of performance. I have been surprised by this, I expected some loss in performance over time but my Force GT has not lost any.
Corsair has amazing customer service
I have absolutely no problems whatsoever with this drive
Cold boot with Windows 7 in less than 30 seconds
VERY FAST loading times for large programs - Outlook loads instantly. In fact all programs load instantly
VERY FAST download times
Everything moves very quickly with this computer
It is an excellent drive to run your operating system
I have all my important programs on it and I still have over 75 GB of free space
Cons: NONE - I have had absolutely no problems at all with this drive; not a single problem.
People who are criticizing Corsair probably are just plain lying for some reason because their customer service is the best I have found in the computer industry by far. That may sound harsh but it is the truth.
A Real-life first-hand example: I originally bought the Force 3 (non GT) that had problems. When I found out I called them up and offered to pay the $100 extra to upgrade to the Force GT 120 GB.
Corsair provided the upgrade AT NO EXTRA COST. No arguments, evasive answers, excuses, rude answers or arrogance - just golden customer service. When I offered to pay for the upgrade the Corsair rep simply said that won't be necessary, we'll take care of you.
Other Thoughts: The people who have rated this with one star probably did not do their homework on setting up a computer for an SSD. You have to change several settings in order for the SSD to run correctly. Frankly, a lot of people are not intelligent enough to understand how to set up an SSD platform correctly.
I also have Corsair 850 HX PSU and it is a superb PSU. I have had zero problems with it. I also have Corsair's Obsidian 650D case and it is a beautiful nearly perfect case.
CPU - 2600K
GPU - XFX 6950
Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler
PSU - Corsair HX 850
Case - Corsair 650D
RAM GSkill 2 x 4 GB 1600
Optical Drives - Asus (DVD) and LiteOn (blu-ray burner)