|Cooler Master ATCS 840 Computer Case RC-840|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Monday, 17 November 2008|
Page 8 of 8
The following information is a constructive conclusion and rating for the Cooler Master ATCS 840 computer case. The views and opinions expressed in this review, as well as the rating given, are the solely the authors. The remarks and score delivered in this article may not match your own opinion, which may be shared in our Discussion Forum.
Consumers are becoming more and more sensitive towards 'Green' packaging and are aware of the environmental effects of product packaging. It used to be that retail boxes could not be made to look good with recycled paper products, but I believe that most people discard their packaging once the product is up and functional. Cooler Master isn't going to impress too many window shoppers with their brown cardboard box with black graphics, but I'm sure the cost of reduced printing and packaging will filter down to the consumer. Nevertheless, Cooler Master doesn't waste the opportunity to share some line art (below) and a myriad of product specification and features. This should keep the comparison shopper happy as they have most questions answered right outside the box.
Appearance is going to be divided between the two possible finishes: anodized black aluminum alloy, or brush silver aluminum alloy. In our review of the black ATCS 840 computer case, the literally mono-toned RC-840-KKN1-GP never really bothered me like other similarly finished products have. I believe it was the various curved shoulders and lack of pure right-angle edges that persuaded me to accept a single-colored finish, but the brushed aluminum texture also helped disguise the simple elegance. Overall, I am fond of the finish and appearance, but I cannot say that my feeling would be the same for the silver (RC-840-SSN1-GP) version.
Computer cases are intended to be one thing above all else: constructed well. The factory staff at Cooler Master must have been on strict orders to polish their work for the ATCS 840, because it certainly showed. The RC-840 is an extremely well-constructed enclosure with a solid chassis capable of sustaining the worst accidents without warping the chassis. While the panels are not 6mm alloy and seams were not welded, the ATCS survives the most harsh handling.
One particular area of interest that really impressed be was product functionality. I'm completely sold on the motherboard tray cut-out which allows me to remove the backplate of a CPU cooler without having the remove the entire system. Even without this feature, the sliding motherboard tray would make for a decent second-favorite. Using 230mm cooling fans in three different locations of the RC-840 is a guaranteed way of ensuring Advanced Thermal Cooling, but the negative inner-case pressure might add-up to be too much for some exhausting video cards (such as high-end NVIDIA and ATI products). Tool-less drive bay trays and clips make installation a snap, and the removable fan filters should keep the innards nice and shiny.
Value is tough to detail at this point, primarily since Cooler Master won't launch the ATCS 840 until November 25th (next week). To my surprise however, our price comparison tool already lists a few retailers with the RC-840 for $279.99. Just as soon as NewEgg makes this product available, I will link to the preferred price. At this early point before the official launch, I can speculate that the RC-840 is certainly worthy of a premium price tag... just maybe not this high.
+ Motherboard tray cut-out for CPU cooler backplate removal
- Heavy-weight product despite all-aluminum construction
Final Score: 9.0 out of 10.
Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.
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