Question Seeking big case with tons of both airflow & HDD bays

coyote2

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Seeking at least a Full tower PC case with great airflow particularly across many 3.5” HDD bays.

Note: no doors over fans, they hurt airflow (for acoustics which is not my priority). It would be great if there were space to have HDD airflow be push-pull (that is, fans on both sides). HDD bays not surrounded by airflow not of interest to me.

I'm not up for the $450 Thermaltake View 91 (12 HDD cages)(I just can’t justify paying 2.5 times as much for 50% more cages). Ditto the $500 Thermaltake Core W200 (14 cages).

So far my favorite is the Thermaltake Core V71 Tempered Glass (8 HDD’s in cages)(I'm thinking of trying to get an extra HDD cage and removing the 5.25" drives).

I see a case with 9 HDD cages (Cooler Master HAF Stacker 935), but I don’t like the airflow nearly as much.

Thanks in advance, friends!
 

coyote2

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You're right, sorry tennis2, I didn't really answer that.

I won't consider less than the eight 3.5" cages my current pick (the Core 71) has, and it's airflow would be hard to beat to switch me to another case with only one more cage than it supports.

What I really want is at least twice as many, or at least 50% more, than eight 3.5" cages. Without that, I'll be forced to continue to use external drive-only cases, and the ones I have are very inconvenient to get to the drives in and out of.

A minor reason for this is that I love leaving one cage/SATA port open for working with outside HDDs.
 

coyote2

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You're right again, tennis2, that is exactly the case that someone with my two priorities in my price range would want. And I too would be on it like white on rice...

But I see an issue with my desire to have great airflow over the 3.5” HDDs. (Even before figuring out if the 12-HDD capacity inlcudes the potential for four I see pictured in the bottom-left next to the PSU.)

The sides of the Enthoo 2 HDD "caddies" are designed for much less airflow than are the sides of the Thermaltake Core 71 HDD cages. (I also like that the TT cages are tool-free.)
Enthoo 2 cages:

Core 71 cages:
 

coyote2

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Thanks for the heads up USAFRet, those MediaSonic cases look nice. Poking around I like the big fan I saw on the back of one...do they have just one fan? And are the individual drive sleds tool-less?

I bought my external boxes a long time ago and I can't even good pictures now. They are Burly Box knockoffs for 5.25" drives: I need to unscrew the case to even get to them, then I need to unscrew the 5.25"-to-3 .5" adapters from the racks to get the the screws holding the drives to the adapters. LOL, who has time for that? Drives in there fail and who knows when I'll get to them. In part because I don't have anywhere accessible to put them, so just reaching them is a pain.
 

USAFRet

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Once you screw the little handle to the drive, tool-less.

The front panel has a push to click lock. Then, grab the handle on a drive and pull one out.
I've had the 4 bay for several years, zero issues.

My only complaint is that the blue LEDs are a bit bright. Easily fixed with a bit of tape or similar.
 

coyote2

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Once you screw the little handle to the drive, tool-less.
Sweet, thanks! Do they just have the one fan? (I'd really like a pair on opposite sides.)
I've had the 4 bay for several years, zero issues.
Nice; mine have needed RMA.
My only complaint is that the blue LEDs are a bit bright. Easily fixed with a bit of tape or similar.
I got some stickyback clear red film for such things.
 

tennis2

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But I see an issue with my desire to have great airflow over the 3.5” HDDs. (Even before figuring out if the 12-HDD capacity inlcudes the potential for four I see pictured in the bottom-left next to the PSU.)
There's mounts for 3x120mm fans in the bottom, 4x120mm fans in the front. If you need more than that.....dunno what to tell you.
It looks like the 4 brackets on the bottom are what comes stock, and you'd buy the additional front-mounted 2-drive cages. The front cages appear to have plenty of space between them to allow airflow between pairs.

 
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coyote2

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There's mounts for 3x120mm fans in the bottom, 4x120mm fans in the front. If you need more than that.....dunno what to tell you.
Please understand I'm thrilled with the fans (I didn't say otherwise).
It looks like the 4 brackets on the bottom are what comes stock, and you'd buy the additional front-mounted 2-drive cages. The front cages appear to have plenty of space between them to allow airflow between pairs.
Exactly. I don't only want airflow between pairs, I want airflow between each HDD. Pairs of HDDs in those Enthoo caddies don't have the kind of side-ventilation I want, and so aren't gonna be as cool as I want. I think their caddy design is lacking.
 
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What external cases do you have that are problematic to remove the drives?
I have a MediaSonic, and it even comes with handles to easily slide individual drives out.
USAFret

apologies if off topic but I've been looking at external enclosures and all the ones I see have low customer ratings on Amazon so that puts me off
 

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