|Rosewill THOR V2 Full-Tower Computer Case|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Doug Dallam|
|Monday, 08 August 2011|
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Rosewill THOR V2 Final Thoughts
For me, the THOR V2 is a good case. There are other more flamboyant or technically superior cases, but the THOR V2 is functionally well designed--no, excellently designed. I have no truck with its interior. It’s simply huge and was easy to work in. The fan set up and air flow are excellent, reducing multiple fan needs. The impressive aspect of this case is exactly what is unimpressive. It’s simple, and has almost no frills, but it's supremely functional, all the way to the front panel connectors. The interior is painted nicely and there are no sharp edges. The exterior dinosaur fins are a nice aesthetic touch too. That’s why I don’t have a lot to discuss here. It’s priced as a mid ranged case that delivers the goods for its intended audience.
Except for a few minor issues, such as the card reader's 3.5” adapter and its fit, which I’m told is similar in even the excellent Cooler Master HAF X, the LED switch being hard to disconnect and being on the bottom of the bezel instead of near the top, the wobbly fan control knobs, and the unusable front bay quick mounts, the case is simply excellent. It’s a simple design that's fully capable. I don’t think there is even a need for the 140mm back exhaust fan, since the case is so open and there are no obstruction between the CPU cooler and the top 230mm exhaust fan.
I’m sitting here right now thinking of anything I didn’t like, other than what I’ve mentioned, or anything else that needs to be said, and I can’t think of one thing. A round of applause for Rosewill maybe? Ah, one thing. I’m told that case design is moving away from the removable filter option to the small perforations we see on the front and side of cases, like the THOR V2. The exception would be the power supply filter. At first, I didn’t like that about the THOR V2. I wanted real filters, but even my old case used the small perforations to trap dust, which means you only need to vacuum off the front of the intakes, which avoids removable filter cleaning. So as long as the side perforations do their dust collecting job, I’m happy with that too.
So let me drop a bomb on you. This isn't Rosewill's design. Most companies selling cases don't make cases. They contract the work, and they cannibalize each other's designs. Ahhhhh yes, this is the case (get it) with the THOR V2, as the design has been out much loinger under the Aerocool brand name X Predator. What companies do is to change things like fan mounts, fan types, and case color combinations. Well, I guess we can't hit Rosewill too much on making a knock off. It's a jungle out there.
There is one other small oversight. When installing the back panel screws and the motherboard stand offs, I had trouble getting them to screw in. The back panel was a case of the holes not aligning as easily as they could, but then I’ve always had trouble with those stupid side panels.The stand offs were a completely different problem. At first I thought it was damaged motherboard tray stand off threads, but closer inspection revealed paint in about half of them. It’s really not a big deal, but it’s nice to know going in. Just finger them until they stop, and use a wrench to twist them down the rest of the way. Still, that’s a little sloppy. The positives greatly outweigh the negatives, which means I'm really liking this case. It also means that were done, except for the conclusion.
Rosewill THOR V2 Conclusion
This is Rosewill’s second version of the THOR series full tower gaming case. Improvements include a sturdier chassis and thumb screws for expansion cards. It also updates the front panel with four USB ports, instead of two: two USB 2 and two USB 3. The front panel also sports an eSATA port connected to the motherboard’s hard drive port. Moreover, the front panel also contains a built in fan controller with two control knobs controlling a total of six fans. It’s manual only, though. The obligatory audio ports are also there. The panel includes the THOR name in red LEDs and side panel LEDs that blink with hard drive activity. The LEDs are not at all over powering. This adds up to a front panel that is very nicely designed.
The top fins retract and expand with a manual switch allowing the top exhaust fan to move air out of the top of the case. The open close type top exhaust ports are a nice touch to a gaming case, and though some will say gimmicky, the design may be better off with the ability to close the vents when moving or working on the case. In other words, if you’re going to have top vents like these, a way to close them is nice.
The side panels are your basic push in the front, thumb screw the back design. I did have some trouble aligning the back panel screw holes, but that could just be my spastic approach to side panel installation. The front fan comes with a switchable red LED, with the switch mounted at the near bottom of the case. I’d have like to see this moved toward the top in future releases. This is neither a negative nor positive, but, rather, an observation.
You get a total of six front bays and six internal hard drive bays. The internal bays are not removable, nor is the motherboard tray, but there is so much space in this case, loading it was easy, even without the removable bay and tray. The hard drives get carriages that they screw to, and then the carriages slide into the side mounted drive bays. Expansion slots total ten.
Cable management is impressive with the THOR V2. You get almost a full 1.125” of cable space and a total of fourteen holes to push cables through. Cable management and space are two of the cases' high points. I ran every single power supply cable out of the back, shown above, and closed the panel with no binding. Impressive.
The case can take a total of five fans when utilizing the side 230mm fan, or eight fans using 140mm fans on the side instead of the 230mm fan; the THOR V2 comes with three 230mm fans and one 140mm fan installed. The fans are quite and move tons of air, and the 230mm fans are 800RPMs each. This case is a virtual wind tunnel, with no obstructions between the intake and exhaust fans, thanks to it’s cabling design, which is roomy and has plenty of large holes to run cables through.
Yep, I'm going to mention the very low noise, almost imperceptible scraping and bearing sound with the top and side 230mm fans (I didn't test the front one because I didn't hear any mechanical noise from that fan). As mentioned, it's more noticeable when the fans are horizontal, although the top 230mm is almost silent in the scraping and bearing noise department. When turning the fan by hand very slowly, and with my ear pressed against it, I can hear the ball bearings clicking. I don't like either of those things.
However, If you are a couple feet from the case in a room that is all but dead silent, you won't hear anything, and that includes the fans acoustic signature, which is all but imperceptible. You can hear air moving over the blades at full speed, but it's more of a rush sound than it is a blade sound, and the blade sound has a nice, low frequency hum to it ( similar to a Scythe Gentle Typhoon). Even at full speed, the noise is not distracting in the least, unlike some of those screamers with which we're familiar. One last blurb on the fans in this case. The 140mm fan in the rear gets it on. It's air moving ability is impressive and it's very quite.
In any event, I'm not really too happy about the mechanical noise Rosewill. You're not giving us any big design flare here, other than an admittedly well layed out interior and built in fan controller, so why not give us top shelf 230mm fans? On the other hand, if this is how all 230mm fans work on the acoustic side, then just disregard this analysis. I'd really appreciate any technical information on 230mm fans in this area, so if you are in the know, please post in the comments section. Most people are not going to notice these noise analysis points. Fan noise, both acoustical signature and mechanical noise, is one of my little excessive, compulsive deals, so I'm hyper sensitive to any noise from any fan. That's why I bought all Gentle Typhoon fans (their mechanical signature is nill, and even at 1800RPPMs, they have a nice, healthy low pitched hum to them). So take that into consideration too.
I’m not sure about the price on this one. It’s got some pretty stiff competition in its price range from cases that are a bit more refined, but then those cases don’t offer the space, cable routing, and excellent cooling this case does, nor a built in fan controller. If I hadn’t actually received this case and installed my system into it, I probably would have gone with something else, and that would have been a great loss. The THOR V2's utility factor is sky high, and, for me, that makes up for its lack of polish and flash bang elsewhere.
The THOR V2 is a big case, a wide and tall case, at almost 23”, and is a little over 9” wide. It’s made of some heavy steel too. The entire case weighs in at over 30lbs. It’s a muscular and aggressive looking design, but without being flamboyant. If you need a case that's huge inside, has a cool but not over-the-top design, and cools like a wind tunnel, the THOR V2 might just be on your list.
+ Huge internal space/easy to work on
- Paint in some motherbaord tray stand off threads
Final Score: 9.1 out of 10.
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