Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Whaler_99

CoolerMaster HAF XB

Recommended Posts

Posted · Original PosterOP
Overview

I ended up looking at the HAF XB as it looked like an excellent option for running a Folding system in. The design lends itself to a folding rig – can leave it open, things like hard drives and PSU don’t get into the way of the airflow for the mobo and GPU’s. Also, in looking at it, if I ever built a second one, I think I could stack them. (which later on I did exactly that.) The LAN model lends itself to installing and removing cards, something I do a lot on these with testing, upgrades, etc…

 

Prior to doing this review, I had previously purchased one of these about 3 months ago and just recently purchased a second. They have made some changes to the units which I will detail. For reference, the older unit will be referred to as version 1 and the newer unit as version 2. I have no idea if CM actually designates them as such…  Just my own for the sake of this article…

First Impression

The case itself is great quality and easy to work with. It has a very solid feel to it. All the panels slide off and on nice and smooth. The handles on the sides are a nice touch.

Lots of steel in this unit. Makes for a very rigid case. Only thing, be prepared to rip things apart a few times as you get the hang of this case. The SSD mounting area is much easier to work with, for instance, if you remove the motherboard tray and the SSD cage itself, install your SSD’s and then re-attach everything.

 

Overall, really good build quality on this case – impressed for the cost. LOTS of tie down spots. They even lay out some possible cable routing areas and tips in the instructions.

Working with the system FANS

Pulled off the included front 120mm fans – replaced them with 140mm ones. Want to maximize that airflow CFM. Ensure you install these fans prior to installing any expansion cards. Space is pretty cramped and you will have a hard time getting at the screws if a GPU or such is installed.

 

VERSION 1 specific - When I tried to remount the front panel, it won't fit with 140mm fans installed. The fans sit just above the PCB that hold the power switch, LED's, etc, for the case. Turns out the front cover has a "ridge" of plastic on the front panel that goes just above this PCB and... my 140 fans are now blocking it. I tried adjusting the fans a bit “up” but still, no go

 

VERSION 2 specific - The front panel has now been modified to have this ridge of plastic removed, so it fits perfectly now with 140mm fans. Nice touch CM.

 

VERSION 1 specific - Now here is one minor issue with Cooler Master – they do not provide any extra fan screws, for the rear fans. Everything else on the case is black, but depending on what fans you buy, you may end up with silver fan screws, which are the common. Be nice to see 12 extra fan screws, black, for the rear 120mm and the two 80mm.

 

VERSION 2 specific – Included are some nice, black, screws for the rear fan. But, still no additional ones for the 80mm fan mounts.

Motherboard Mounting

Mounting the mobo was straight forward. I wasn't going to, but ended up pulling out the mobo tray, only because you have to, to get at two of the screws securing the SSD cage, which I wanted gone. Everything went back in nicely.

Drive Install and hot swap backplane

Got the CD-ROM mounted with no issue. The hard drive tray – amazing tooless solution. The entire frame is hard plastic and it actually has a locking mechanism and can slide apart to get the drive into the tabs, click it back into place, done. Not like the flimsy ones, bending and prodding and such so get the drive screw tabs in. It’s so elegant and works so well…

 

VERSION 1 specific – The backplane for the hard drives is a bit of pain to work with. The molex connecter orientation is such that it is very tight getting a connector in. Also, the SATA connections are “stacked”, so no right angle connectors if using both. And again, pretty tight working in there once a PSU is installed

 

VERSION 2 specific – You can see CM tried to fix some of the issues with the previous units. The SATA connectors are now placed such that using right angled connectors is fine… but now almost a must. Using straight connectors is a REAL pain getting in. Course, things are very tight. Now, onto the molex connector. This was an utter fail. You have a connector hanging off four cables the run from a glob of silicon no less. Just looks really cheap. When I grab it to move it around, I am worried about breaking it.

 

When setting up your system, connecting in your SATA cables before installing the PSU. This will leave you some room to get you hand in there. Also, if you can, lead in the model power connector as well to plug in prior to PSU install. Lot easier

Power Supply

Now, loaded in the PSU. Word of advice, plan your build, and mount the PSU first and run most of you cables leads where you will need them. Then install the mobo on the tray. I did the PSU last and it is somewhat difficult running the power supply leads. If, you had a modular PSU, forget it. Almost impossible to get your hand in there to plug extra ones in… So plan carefully and make sure you have all the leads.

 

A modular PSU would be recommend to minimize all the cables down there.

 

In my ver1 case, I installed TX750 and although there was room, it was REALLY crammed in tight with all the extra cables I didn't need. In the ver2 case I installed a CX750M and not having all the extra cables was nice. I was also able to "pre" run my mobo power, cpu power, gpu power cables and such.

 

The PSU itself screws into this "frame" which itself then is screwed onto the case. This allows the PSU to extend out of the case by a few inches, leaving you a bit of extra room inside. I would definitely say a 160mm long PSU be the largest you want to try and install in here.

Expansion Slots

One great benefit of the layout of this case is the expansion slots. On most ATX cases with 7 expansion slots and a mobo with three PCI-e x16 slots, you cannot put a dual slot card in the third slot. It won’t fit as right after the end of the 7th slot, you have the PSU. Not so here. I was able to install a dual slot GPU in the third GPU slot using expansion slot 7 and then were 8 would be. Fits fine. Just be aware though, typically the second “slot” on those GPU’s are for exhausting hot air – which won’t happen in this scenario.

Conclusion

Overall a great case that really delivers. Want something unique looking to have on your desk? This will definitely be it. Great to work with, everything installs well, once you have it all figured out. Excellent cooling with this case as well, even when folding with four GPU’s. Other than some minor issues with the design, this is a high quality, solid solution.

 

Used as a LAN desk I could easily see this replacing say a HighSpeed Tech Station for instance.

 

 


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Base unit pulled apart a bit...

 

post-765-0-62686500-1375579417_thumb.jpg

 

Motherboard tray...

 

post-765-0-71432000-1375579425_thumb.jpg

 

Motherboard installed...

 

post-765-0-07143700-1375579429_thumb.jpg

 

Front area, stock fans removed...

 

post-765-0-28583000-1375579432_thumb.jpg

 

Some clearance there is you decided to go with a AiO unit...

 

post-765-0-03184800-1375579436_thumb.jpg

 

Non modular PSU installed... lot of cables to hide...

 

post-765-0-54505200-1375579439_thumb.jpg

 

Now some shots of the drive cage...

 

post-765-0-54436000-1375579442_thumb.jpg

 

post-765-0-87570000-1375579445_thumb.jpg

 

post-765-0-23898600-1375579448_thumb.jpg

 

post-765-0-32677000-1375579451_thumb.jpg

 

Here you can see the zero clearance between the 140mm fans and the PCB on the front...

 

post-765-0-18654600-1375579707_thumb.jpg

 

Here you can see the Version 1 backplane...

 

post-765-0-22589900-1375579806_thumb.jpg

 

And here is the Version 2 backplane...

 

post-765-0-29491500-1375579781_thumb.jpg

 

Now, a shot of the Version one front panel with the ridge...

 

post-765-0-05502900-1375579787_thumb.jpg

 

And a shot of the Version 2 front panel, minus the ridge...

 

post-765-0-22389800-1375579800_thumb.jpg

 

And finally... two of them stacked up. :)

 

post-765-0-45266100-1375579931_thumb.jpg

 

 

 


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh sweet, I didn't know they modified the case... My front panel is an absolute pain to re-connect because of my 140mm fans, it requires a lot of jiggling.

 

It's a good case for modding and messing around with, which is why I bought one.  :)

 

Cheers for the review Whaler


    CPU: 3930k  @ stock                                  RAM: 32GB RipjawsZ @ 2133Mhz       Cooling: Custom Loop
MOBO: AsRock x79 Extreme9                      SSD: 240GB Vertex 3 (OS)                     Case: HAF XB                     LG 34um95 + Ergotron MX Arm Mount - Dual Review
  GPUs: Gigabyte GTX 670 SLI                     HDD: 1TB WD Black                                PSU: Corsair AX 860                               Beyerdynamic - Custom One Pro Review

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Oh sweet, I didn't know they modified the case... My front panel is an absolute pain to re-connect because of my 140mm fans, it requires a lot of jiggling.

 

It's a good case for modding and messing around with, which is why I bought one.  :)

 

Cheers for the review Whaler

 

If you are good with a knife, you can "trim" off that ridge of plastic and it will then fit fine. This is what I did on mine...


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are good with a knife, you can "trim" off that ridge of plastic and it will then fit fine. This is what I did on mine...

 

Yeah, I probably will have to do that.

Would you say a stanley knife is best?


    CPU: 3930k  @ stock                                  RAM: 32GB RipjawsZ @ 2133Mhz       Cooling: Custom Loop
MOBO: AsRock x79 Extreme9                      SSD: 240GB Vertex 3 (OS)                     Case: HAF XB                     LG 34um95 + Ergotron MX Arm Mount - Dual Review
  GPUs: Gigabyte GTX 670 SLI                     HDD: 1TB WD Black                                PSU: Corsair AX 860                               Beyerdynamic - Custom One Pro Review

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow that looks pretty beast!


Desk: monitors 3x Asus VE248h(eyefinity), Keyboard Cm Strom Trigger(mx red), Mouse Corsair m65, Headset Audio Technica ATH-M50

Black Friday 2013 Build: i7 4770k, Gigabyte Z87X UD5H, 16gb Corsair, Msi R9 290, Corsair Axi 760, Corsair 750D, 2x intel 530 240gb ssd, 2x Seagate 400gb

Older Machine amd x640, msi 760g mobo, 8gb gskillz, Sapphire 6870, Corsair hx650, Cooler master haf 922, ocz agility 3 120gb ssd || HTPC: i7 3770k, shuttle xpc z77, 16gb gskillz, Asus GTX 650 ti, intel 120gb msata ssd

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Yeah, I probably will have to do that.

Would you say a stanley knife is best?

 

Just something sharp. Wasn't hard at all. I used a small hobby knife, just took it slow and trimmed it right down....


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Looking at the stacked cases which on is version 2?

 

Version two was the bottom - there is no way to tell from looking it them.


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

O my, very nice, very informative!


Main Rig: -FX8150 -32gb Kingston HyperX BLUE -120gb Kingston HyperX SSD -1TB WD Black -ASUS R9 270 DCUII OC -Corsair 300r -Full specs on Profile


Other Devices: -One Plus One 64gb Sandstone Black -Canon T5 -Moto G -Pebble Smartwatch -Nintendo 2DS -G27 Racing Wheel


#PlugYourStuff - 720penis - 1080penis - #KilledMyWife - #LinusButtPlug - #HashtagsAreALifestyle - CAR BOUGHT: 2010 Corolla

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a brilliant case to work with, deffos room to expand.coming in the next six months is my upgrade log of me turning it into a 4x120 watercooled system. yes you can fit a 360 in the front with modding ;) 


Rig 1 CPU: 3570K Motherboard: V Gene GPU: Power Color r9 280x at 1.35GHZ  RAM: 16 GB 1600mhz PSU: Cougar CMX 700W Storage: 1x Plexor M5S 256GB 1x 1TB HDD 1x 3TB GREEN HDD Case: Coolermaster HAFXB Cooling: Intel Watercooler
"My day so far, I've fixed 4 computers and caught a dog. Australian Tech Industry is weird."

"It's bent so far to the right, It's a hook."

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

It's a brilliant case to work with, deffos room to expand.coming in the next six months is my upgrade log of me turning it into a 4x120 watercooled system. yes you can fit a 360 in the front with modding ;)

 

Look forward to seeing that.


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks For the Review Whaler_99, It made all the difference when i was looking at buying one. Great Case but i got the rev 1, I just broke off the ridge where it gets in the way of 140mm fans. If you do it carefully enough it works fine.


                 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Thanks For the Review Whaler_99, It made all the difference when i was looking at buying one. Great Case but i got the rev 1, I just broke off the ridge where it gets in the way of 140mm fans. If you do it carefully enough it works fine.

 

Ya, there are things I prefer better about the rev1 (like the connectors on the hot swap cage) versus the rev 2 (the fixed front panel). It's a toss up as to which is better. :)


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a good case, but so much gaudy chunky plastic everywhere. This case would have looked much better if it followed the Cosmos design language instead of HAF.


SNOWHEART - laptop

Model: TRACER III 17R XTREME VR 800 || CPU: Intel i7-8750H  || RAM: HyperX Impact 16GB || GPU: Nvidia RTX 2070 || Storage: Intel 660P 512GB Display: 1920x1080p 144hz

 

 

PRISIMHEART 2.0 - desktop

Case: FD Meshify C Mini || PSU: EVGA Supernova P2 750w || MB: Asrock Fata1ity AB350 Gaming-ITX/ac || CPU: AMD Ryzen R5 1600 || CPU Cooler: Scythe Choten TUF edition || RAM: G.Skill Flare X 16GB || GPU: Galax GTX 1070 EXOC-SNPR || Storage: Samsung 860 Evo 1TB + Crucial MX500 1TB + SG Firecuda 2TB

 

PERIPHERALS / DISPLAY

Keyboard: Razer Blackwidow Elite || Mouse: Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum + Steelseries RIval 650 || Monitor: HP Omen 32

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

This video shows it installed...

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QVnkn6sYQZw


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I love the cube design of the case!


CPU-Intel i3-4370  MOBO- ASROCK H97M Pro 4  RAM- Kingston Fury 8 GB SDD-1TB WD Blue GPU- Asus GTX 760 Case- Corsair Spec-01

Power Supply- Corsair CX500

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

I love the cube design of the case!

 

Yep, and makes for easy stacking.


Forum Links - Community Standards, Privacy Policy, FAQ, Features Suggestions, Bug and Issues.

Folding/Boinc Info - Check out the Folding and Boinc Section, read the Folding Install thread and the Folding FAQ. Info on Boinc is here. Don't forget to join team 223518. Check out other users Folding Rigs for ideas. Don't forget to follow the @LTTCompute for updates and other random posts about the various teams.

Follow me on Twitter for updates @Whaler_99

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice review. I thought that ver 2 also added the option to take out all the drive cages in the lower level (aka things were screwed in not riveted in) and offered the option for a 3.5" drive cage instead of the 2.5" one as well.

I could be wrong though. the only major thing I hate about this case is the lower level just becomes a rats nest of cables. but its not really that bad because no one can see it unless the side panels are off and in turn the upper level looks super clean.

 

Has anyone had the X-Dock drives fail?  

Iv heard of them failing before. I would just tell people that if your 3.5" drives are going to be even somewhat permanent just to take that dock PCB out and hook the drives up directly.


Main PC(Liquid cooled HAF-XB): The Green Monster

Backup PC:Evga X58 SLi, i7 920, GTX 660, 12GB DDR3 1600, CM HAF-X NV-edition

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×