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This review is from: Corsair Obsidian Series 650D (CC650DW-1) Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Case
Pros: Accessibility, with latching side panels; front panel USB ports; ease of installation of parts and connectors. SATA dock on top of the case, for temporarily connecting a bare HDD or SSD outside the case. Handsome.
Cons: Mid-tower turns out to be a wee short for my ASUS X99-Deluxe motherboard. Was unable to use brackets 1 & 8 of the case, so for that MoBo there are only 6 slots available. The double cable for front USB 3.0 connectors makes for a lot of thick cable. Fortunately, the availability of adapters, making it possible to connect the USB 3.0 front ports to the header on the MoBo, takes care of some complaints on that front. But that still leaves the problem of too much cable, and thick cable at that. Fortunately, the cable management of the case made it possible to solve that problem also.
Other Thoughts: I've just seen that this case is being discontinued. I hope they come out with another one just like it, with minor improvements. Best case I've ever seen.
Edit 4/5/2016: I was finally able to mod the front panel issue, using a proper header setup I got by cannibalizing a 350D front panel. (This mod is described on the Corsair forums.) I had been having lots of trouble with the front panel in any case, and after I did the mod, I found out why. When I tested the OEM cables, they turned out to be faulty. One or two wires open or NG on both cables. Still love the case, though.
Edit 5/24/16: one further note, about the SATA dock. This is, so far as I know, the only case with a dock like this, which enables the user to initialize/format/read-write to-from external HDDs without using an enclosure. Really, really handy. It is not plug and play, because the dock is using the same connections as any internal drive; whichever drive is in the bay is treated like a normal drive. The dock will take both 2.5" and 3.5" drives. With the PC turned off, insert the drive in the dock. Then fire up the PC, and you're good to go. I use a lot of outboard drives, and before I put them in their enclosures, I use this dock to initialize and format them.
Pros: This card has a hard-to-find 9-pin internal header for front panel connection of Firewire 400. Also has two external ports on the bracket. Front panel connection works fine. But see below.
Cons: Very hard to install; one port dead. Even though the card format is correct, it seemed to have about half a millimeter extra distance between the bracket and the front tab that protects the pins. I could not get this thing to go in the slot easily. Finally had to remove all the other cards so I could flex the case frame slightly. Only then did it go in. This took over an hour. And then, one of the ports on the bracket turned out to be dead. I don't know if a pin got bent during the difficult installation, or if it was bad to begin with. I know it was not caused by ESD, because I was fully grounded. As it happens, I had ordered two of these -- one for a backup -- but I didn't want to take the chance of damaging the motherboard or the slot pins, so I'll live without the port. I have another Firewire card that has both 1394a and 1394b ports, so I'm okay with the one 1394a port on this card. The front panel was the important thing.
Other Thoughts: If you need a 1394a front panel port, this is the last card out there, so get it while they have it. Just beware of the installation problems. I tried two other manufacturers' cards before this one, and they wouldn't fit at all, or were the wrong type. Firewire has been thrown on the trash heap, unfortunately. But I still like to use it, mainly because I have a dozen peripherals that use either it or USB 2.0 -- no USB 3.0. And Firewire blazes compared to USB 2.0. It even holds its own against USB 3.0. Too bad it was put out to pasture.
Edit 4/8/16: I added back an egg, because as I've thought about it, I believe the dead port is by design. Other cards like this have statements in their instructions that the internal port is shared with one of the external ports. I think that is probably the case with this card, even though the specs don't convey that information. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. The dead port is the top port, near the internal header and internal port, so my guess is they are shared.
Edit 4/9/16: FYI, the card is not Syba, as advertised. It came in an IOCrest box. This seems to be common with these cards. And in case you are wondering, it uses the VIA chipset, not the TI. But it seems to work fine for my HDDs. I haven't tried it with camcorders or audio interfaces.
This review is from: ASUS X99-DELUXE/U3.1 LGA 2011-v3 Intel X99 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: Ease of installation; # of headers and connectors; performance.
Cons: Wish it had a firewire header; PCIe slots 2-7 are the only ones available in a Corsair Obsidian 650D mid-tower case. Memory fans block bracket 1; bracket 8 too close to PSU to use the extra SPDIF bracket there. Had to use bracket 7, which blocks PCIe slot x16-6. UEFI BIOS does not automatically select UEFI for bootup devices in 64-bit systems. Had to go through a messed-up Windows installation because of this.
Edit, 4/5/2016: after almost a year of use, I still love this Mobo, even though there have been lots of complaints about the USB. I did find that the USB front panel connections are not robust enough. Using the front panel with USB HDDs, it is only possible to use a short 18" cable. Anything longer, and the HDD keeps appearing and disappearing in the system. Using the USB Turbo Boost, which is great for the back panel USB ports, makes the front panel even dicier. There are workarounds for this problem, but it is annoying.
Other Thoughts: This is a phenomenal motherboard. I recommend it highly. The intel X99 chip blazes. The slot lineup issues are specific to the case, and shouldn't be a problem in a full tower. Just an FYI note. I do wish there was still a Firewire header on the board. Firewire is still used for many audio interfaces, and they are not changing that anytime soon. I had to buy an add-on FW card.READ FULL REVIEW