CPU Access and Wire Management
The Scout hits a 1000 yard target with their CPU access cut out. It’s very nicely machined with nice buffed edges so you won’t get scraped up during CPU cooler installation. It allows you to easily get to the back of the motherboard to help fasten most top end aftermarket CPU coolers which almost always require back plates. Totally one of those “why didn’t they do this before?” ideas.Removing the left panel allows a better look at how much extra space is provided for more cable management. Molex connectors of any type will easily fit behind the tray as well as any power supply cabling if needed. There aren’t many PSUs that offer super long cabling, but it’s still a very nice touch. You’ll also notice the many buffed ports and cut outs for feeding any wiring. An even better feature is the Front Panel wire bundle which is long enough to run down the back side of the motherboard tray and then out at the bottom for clean access.
Are there any improvements that can be made to the interior? Perhaps in a future case revision, engineers could offer another vertical oval cut out where the top three small holes are located. This would allow the largest main PSU power connectors to fit through to the motherboard. It’s not detrimental, but it would be an excellent touch. For those adventurous types, a Dremel Tool could perform the same operation.
Mustering Our Equipment
In order to see how well the case does in our next areas of assessment, we needed to select components that reflect real world conditions. Parts selected for this installation included:
- Intel I7 965 3.2GHz
- GIGABYTE X58-Extreme Motherboard
- 6GB Kingston HyperX 2000 MHz Triple Channel DDR3
- Zotac Geforce GTX 295
- 2 x 500 GB Seagate SATA II
- Kingwin 1000 Watt Mach I PSU
What could be hotter than an Intel I7 based system inside the Scout? Literally, nothing once all four physical and virtual cores are running 100% along with some extreme graphical testing in the back ground and will be the basis for our thermal testing.
The chassis made quick task of the installation. The PSU mounted nicely on the lower deck and as you can see above, though a modular PSU is very ideal in this kind of chassis if you’re shooting for super neat and elite.
Now, you’ll notice that our Zotac GTX 295 just barely fit in between the hard drive cage and PCI case frame. It took a little maneuvering, but it did fit with about a near 1/4 inch to spare. Knowing Coolermaster, you can expect the next generation chassis will offer a bit more space. But, for the time being, it’ll work, but do be careful with monstrous cards.
There was one issue getting the side panel on due to the placement of the hard drive. It sits far enough forward that the power cabling interferes with the panel. There’s quite a bit of space behind the drive. So, maybe a little change to the tooless hard drive rails will set hard drives farther back.