When you hear the name Thermaltake, the first thing that pops into mind is cooling. I mean why not? They have been one of the leading innovators when it comes to processor and component cooling for quite some time now. They have produced some of the finest and more affordable products in the cooling market. A market that they managed to amaze continuously for the last few years.
Knowing Thermaltake, they have always been working on new products that will make the enthusiast’s life easier. So when they decided to branch out into the chassis market and create their own line of cases, a lot became excited at the thought of having someone like Thermaltake, who knows a lot about component cooling, to build their cases. Born was the Xaser Series whose main aim was to complement the other cooling products that they have already produced.
This line proved to be very successful as it became a favorite to most enthusiasts worldwide. It was not a surprise though as the first Xasers were very cool and unique looking. Being built by one of the leading names in the industry definitely was a big plus factor.
Today we will be looking at one of the latest incarnations of the Xaser line. Up to XaserV now, this new series of chassis will again be tested for overall look, functionality and design. Introducing, the XaserV Damier V5000D from Thermaltake.
If there is one thing the Xaser series are known for, it’s the look. Add functionality and superb design, you’ve got a case that is sure to please even the most critical enthusiast. The XaserV Damier comes in different color designs as well. Aside from the Damier stylish motif, this particular model’s most obvious identifying trait is its BLUE color.
The case is made out of 1.0 mm SECC making it a really solid case and at the same time a bit heavy. The front door however is made of aluminum, which allows for easy opening. The side panel has an “X” type window with 2 air vents built into it. One is located in the handle and one in the center bottom part of the side panel.
One of the most striking and useful feature of the Xaser V line of cases is the inclusion of a 5 1/4″ bay function panel. Thermaltake of course used their very own Hardcano and fitted it in the V5000D. This panel looks very much like a HardCano 9 with just some buttons a little bit different. It has a 4 channel VR fan speed controllers, digital LCD monitor with blue back lighting, auto & manual temperature fan speed display mode, and a 3 channel temperature & fan speed monitoring system. It also has an alarm function built into its overheat prevention system. Temperature display can be changed from C/F. Best of all, it doubles as an extra HDD slot. That way, you don’t really lose any slot. I can see future Xaser cases though fitted with the newer and sexier Hardcano 12.
This case features a unique 2-way door that can be opened and closed by a key. I guess this is a security thing for preventing unauthorized use of your computer. It also prevents them from fiddling with your hardware. Hmmm. My kids won’t like this The key unlocks the first and second doors. Unlocking the first door gives you access to your optical drives, floppy drives and the power button. Unlocking the second door, lets you install/remove drives, etc. It also lets you carry out maintenance work on your front intake fan.
Cooling wise, this case is well equipped. Fans are in abundance for maximum ventilation and air circulation. All of them strategically positioned. As mentioned, the first fan we encountered was the one at the top blowhole. The next one we found was at the rear of the case. Just like the top fan, this will serve as an exhaust. Note that the fan used this time is a 90mm fan (21dBA) Smart Fan complete with blue LEDs. Its speed is adjustable from 1300-3000rpm. The next fan location was at the front. It is situated at the bottom front of the case. It is hidden from view by a grill located on the 2nd door. Behind you’ll find a 80mm (21dBA) fan that will act as an intake. This fan is fitted with an air filter.
An additional side cover with dual 90mm (21dBA) Smart cooling fans is also incorporated in the design. They both act as intake fans as well. The top fan gets air thru a vent present on the handle of the “X” type side panel window while the bottom fan extracts air from the vent located on the bottom part of the side panel. Both fans have an air filter fitted as well. BTW the bottom fan is also equipped with blue LEDs.
The case was designed so that you would use less of your tools when setting up. The screw-less PCI fingers is one of the easy install component of the case. It allows you to install your AGP and PCI cards without a sweat. A PCI long card bracket is also available for those extra long cards. It is located on the bottom of the dual fan side cover. For the 5 1/4 and 3 1/2 drive bays, you’ve got the tool-free sliders for ease of installation and removal. Simply attach one of the sliders either to your optical drive, hard drive or floppy drive and you’re done.
The installation was straight forward. Less tools and less effort. Make sure though that you follow the manual to avoid delays in setting up. You need this especially when configuring the different fan controllers and sensors. BTW, make sure you install a decent power supply coz there are heaps of fan in this system. That plus your own hardware will draw up quite a bit of current.
The only thing that will delay your setup is the tidying up of cables. There are heaps of cables due to the fans, controllers, sensors, top usb, etc. Although Thermaltake included some cable ties, 2 to be exact, it wasn’t enough. I would have preferred some more ties and cable looms over the mousepads and stickers. Once the cables have been sorted, everything looked perfect.
The light show is definitely nice. Not too bright or too weak. Just right. The noise factor is also very good when the fan controllers are set to low. Setting it on high does create a considerable amount of noise. I also notice that at full blast, an annoying loud sound is being produced. Upon inspection, I found that the noise was coming from the dual side panel fans. It wasn’t the fans. It was the air filters. For some reason, the air filters are creating a loud noise when the fans are on full blast. Fiddling with it, I was able to remove the noise by just reversing the air filter. After that, everything was smooth again.
Hardcano sensors place the case temps at 22-23C with the fans spinning at medium speed and the outside room temperature at 15C. I suppose the multiple fans and the case design has a lot to do with it.
In the Xaser V Damier V5000D, Thermaltake has once again produced a very elegant and functional case. Adding more and better features than the previous series, it is sure to please even the hardcore gamer or enthusiast. When it comes to aesthetics, well, the pictures speak for themselves. Looks is obviously the main attraction of this case. The “X” type side window, the light effects, the paint job and the Damier design will make this case a site to behold in any LAN event.
With the V5000D, you have total control of your fans while monitoring component temperature in the process. Ventilation is extremely good resulting in better cooling for your entire system. All this without creating too much noise.
The screwless, tool-less approach is definitely most welcomed. It makes installation easier and faster. If there’s one thing that might annoy anyone, it’s the bundles and bundles of cables that are present inside the rig. Nothing that some cable ties and looms can’t handle though really.
Pricewise, the Thermaltake Xaser V Damier V5000D is realistically priced. Taking into consideration the amount of time they used to come up with this design, this case is a bargain. However, this case is not for everyone. Normal users might find this case too much for their taste or their pockets. But for those who want an “it” case without the hassle of casemodding, then look no further, the Thermaltake Xaser V Damier series is for you.