|Thermaltake DH101 HTPC ATX Case VF7001BNS|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Monday, 05 November 2007|
Page 5 of 7
Detailed Interior Features
Whenever I review a case, there are a few basic features I inspect to make sure that the product was not just a loosely designed box with some fans placed into convenient area's. So when I received the Thermaltake DH101 HTPC ATX case VF7001BNS, one of the first things I did was open it up and poke around the framework.
While the roots to any HTPC case can be traced back to desktop and rackmount cases, there are a few specific areas which have been modified and a few that have been remained the same (for untold reasons). In the Thermaltake DH101, the hard drive rack has been designed to be removed from the VF7001BNS chassis. HTPC cases don't see much time outside of the entertainment center environment, so in my opinion this is really a convenience item during the initial build.
While convenience is always, well, convenient, it's nice that Thermaltake has made all of the hard drive and optical drive bays tool-less in the DH101; but it's really not necessary. After all, how often will you need to replace one of these items, and what kind of difference will these items make? But I digress, because the point is not that they are unwanted, but that Thermaltake has included them all in the VF7001BNS despite the obvious luxury. I do still wonder about that lower optical drive bay, though... kind of pointless really.
The front panel is easily removed by lifting three plastic retaining latches from behind the bezel. You simply lift the three tabs, and push to release the bezel from the DH101 chassis.
Thermaltake may have missed a small detail with the optical drive cage. You can see from the image above that the DH101 has an opening in the bezel for the top slot, but the lower two are not accessible from outside the HTPC ATX case. If you look even closer it seems that only the top two drive bays receive tool-less mounting, while the lower bay is forgotten. It true that the lower two bays probably won't ever see real-world use, but consistency should still count for something.
On an entirely separate note, I noticed that unlike the entire rest of the VF7001BNS HTPC case, the top of the optical drive cage is not vented like everywhere else. I'm not so sure that there will ever be a thermal issue in this area, since it's generally only going to see one optical drive, but if you're planning on loading the DH101 with additional hard drives it might make sense to create some ventillation of your own.
In the next section, we put it all together and see just how well the engineers over at Thermaltake have done with the VF7001BNS.