Zalman Z9 Neo Mid-Tower ATX Gaming Case Review

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bit_user

Splendid
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Having to access the other side to get at the drives in the bottom tunnel would be annoying. Drives are the component I swap out most frequently, especially when I just went through a round of OS upgrades (Win + Linux), to make backups, copy data, etc.
 
Thanks for this TH team. We can never have enough case reviews! I snapped up an older USB 2.0 variant of the Z9 U3 case a few years ago on NewEgg for $40 on a Shellshocker deal (the one that has the "Z" in the front as part of the intake design where the fan is). I was looking for a second case to place my Sandy Bridge equipment while upgrading to Haswell. It has turned out to be way better than expected in quality.

My only complaint is that the HDD cage inhibits the single 120mm front fan airflow and therefore overall case airflow. That same Sandy build in my Antec Nine Hundred case (running the Haswell upgrade) under load ran about 4C cooler on the CPU, and a whopping 6C cooler on the GTX 680 GPU (blower fan). That shows you how important a good air flow design can really make a difference on air cooled equipment. However, considering I paid $110 originally for the Nine Hundred and no longer overclock the Sandy build, it's not a bad compromise.
 

Anathemata

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Feb 16, 2011
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I wasn't impressed until I saw the price. This is incredible at the current $60 price tag.

I hope more manufacturers start sporting a divider between PSU and the rest of the computer. It makes cable routing so much easier and looks a whole lot cleaner.

Lastly, the fan filters: I ran my Fractal Define R for over four years without blowing out the inside of the box and there isn't a hint of dust inside. I just vacuum the filters once or twice a year. This has a similar filter placement, and I expect this will perform the same.

Great value.
 
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