Casings Guide

Cooler Master CM690 (RC-690) review

Cooler Master CM 690

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A Fetish for Fans

A Fetish for Fans

For as long as computers have been around, so has the issue of cooling them. From the very first computers that took up an entire room to its numerous modern incarnations, getting rid of the excess heat generated by the computer has remained an essential consideration. Servers for example are housed in cool, temperature controlled environments so as to achieve optimal performance and stability. Though on a much smaller scale, these are also valid concerns for the consumer market and especially DIY enthusiasts, as their own systems are usually configured with more powerful (read: heat producing) components.

Unsurprisingly, there is a whole cottage industry that has emerged to cater to enthusiasts and their cooling demands. While the traditional cooling method is to equip the system with capable fans and heatsinks to cool the components directly, this is ideally complemented with a chassis that allows all these coolers to work at their full potential. Often, this means a chassis with adequate ventilation and no 'heat traps' from improper cable management and design. In fact, we feel that case ventilation is an aspect that branded PC vendors may actually have the edge over most DIY-ers, as cable management may be neglected due to the hassle, especially since enthusiasts are likely to swap out their PC components quite often.

Cooler Master's latest chassis attempts to give enthusiasts what they want with a solid emphasis on cooling and ventilation. A meshed exterior design allows ambient air to pass unrestricted into the chassis while enthusiasts with a fetish for fans can install up to seven system fans in this chassis. Although we can probably imagine how much of a din that many fans will make, Cooler Master clearly believes that there is a market for such an extreme air-cooled design.