|Thermaltake Level 10 GT Snow Edition Case|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Hank Tolman|
|Thursday, 29 September 2011|
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Level 10 GT Snow Final Thoughts
The cable management on the Level 10 GT Snow Edition is the best I have seen to date. Thermaltake even used a contact method of connecting the door fan to avoid extra cabling. The seven holes in the motherboard tray aid with routing your cables out of sight and, with less congestion in the main compartment, air flow can be greatly improved. The Level 10 GT Snow Edition even comes with a headphones rack that attaches to the side of the case. They've thought of everything!
Speaking of airflow, the amount of cooling that takes place throughout the Thermaltake Level 10 GT Snow Edition case is pretty amazing. After leaving the system on for two days, I took idle temps followed by load temps. The GPU got up to 85 degrees Celsius, which is pretty hot, but not unbearable. The CPU only got up to 69 degrees at top load. The idle temps were very cool, hovering just about 40 degrees. Even with all that airflow, the case was very quiet. I don't have a decibel meter, so I can't tell you exactly how loud it was, but that wouldn't have done much good with my AC running and other noises throughout the office anyway. The fact of the matter is, even with the fans on high, the loudest fan was still the GPU fan on my GTX 570. I heard that over everything else and when I throttled it down, I could hardly hear the case fans at all.
The case comes with some outstanding features that make it, in my opinion, well worth the cost. If you are dedicated to high performance computing, you will need a case that offers a lot of room, excellent cooling, easy installation, functionality, and the appeal of something you want to see every day. This case offers that. The last thing I want is to sound like a Thermaltake commercial. I try to be very honest in all of my reviews so that those of you reading it get a real feel for the product you are researching. My problem here is that I am having trouble finding anything wrong with the Level 10 GT Snow Edition. That said, I have come up with some minor complaints.
First, while I love the hot-swappable style hard drive bays, they are sometimes difficult to remove. I can't count the amount of times I have checked the lock to make sure it was in the unlocked position when I couldn't push the button exactly right and the drive wouldn't slide out. The 5.25 inch drive bays also present an area of concern for me. I change components in my system very often. When I say very often, I mean almost daily. Sometimes that includes an optical drive. I don't want to have to pull out this behemoth of a case every time I want to use the optical drive to re-install windows on another test system. I'm considering just using an external DVD drive for this case, since it will most certainly be taking over as my personal case.
Another minor complaint I have is that the extra quarter of an inch or so that the slightly beveled back panel gives you for cable management is not quite enough. When you start adding two or three GPUs to your system, you need to slap a few more cables on your power supply. Route them through to the back and they start taking up more space. Just one other cable on top of the shielded 24-pin power cable is enough to make less than breezy putting the back panel into place. I've wrestled with back panels in the past, and this is by no means one of the harder ones, but another quarter inch might be nice back there. It's not like we think we are going to get a small case when we buy this sucker.
Overall, my complaints are really nit-picky and inconsequential. Like I said, this case is going to become my personal case. I love it. It's also one of the few cases I trust to leave the side panel on when I have multiple GPUs in and am overclocking the system. The method of hooking up the SATA drives is genius and I even have a good time playing with the lighting system. You can turn it off too, though. Add to that the USB 3.0 ports that complete the total of six USB ports on the front and top of the case and you have a winner on your hands.