A Closer Look
The front of the case is made completely out of aluminum, no matter if you go with the black or silver version. Both the 7" and 5.25" drive bay have silver, aluminum covers, so you can even use the cheaper beige drives and it will not change the look of your system. You will not see if the optical drive behind the cover is accessing the CD/DVD or not - this is the only downside of these covers. Other manufacturer include thin, inlayed plastic bars to let the light of the drive shine through without destroying the look and feel of the case. The 3.5" drive bay is placed vertically toward the left of the case. The black arch on the bottom of the front is a fine grill, which allows air to pass through to the blue LED 90 mm fan,
The sides of the case both have windows, held in place by plastic rivets. There are large air grills in the center of both windows, while the bottom of the side sports the name of the case - "Tt Lanbox". The back of the side also has some air holes. The top of the case has some holes as well to let hot air out of the case.
The handle of the case is a tad bit darker than the rest of the case, which looks very nice. It is incredibly sturdy and very comfortable to hold. Having a big case was always a pain when going to LAN parties, but it is like carrying a small suitcase with the Thermaltake Lanbox.
The back of the Lanbox is quite interesting. Any usable space is used for air vents and air holes. The two 40 mm fans are placed behind honeycomb cut outs, while the PCI covers have fine air vents. Above the PCI covers is an area were a small piece can be broken out to allow for water cooling setups to pass in and out of the system. The rubber tube protector is placed along the edges of the hole to protect the tubing from damage. You may also install an additional 60 mm fan in this spot if no water cooling is used.
In the left, bottom corner the the usual I/O ports can be found. There is also a sticker which reads "Thermaltake Key 3 Spirit" all the way to the left. There is a separate area on the Thermaltake website, explaining what "Key 3 Spirit" is:
“Key 3 Spirit” is a new concept (program) developed by Thermaltake that directly communicates to consumers, and aims at marketing the Performance, Silent Operation, and Thermal Conscious design of Thermaltake products. Key to this program is gaining the consumer’s confidence in Thermaltake as a brand, and demonstrating the value of buying the Case, Cooler, and Power Supply from the industry’s leading company, the number one choice for PC DIY enthusiasts worldwide.
Purchasing a Thermaltake Case, Cooler, or Power Supply labeled with “Key 3 Spirit” is an assurance that the “Quality”, “Performance” and “Reliability” of the components meet the highest standard. In addition, Thermaltake’s intangible image of “Innovation”, “Fashionable Design”, and “Professionalism” will be accompanied with every system, to further elevate the value the users system.
“Key 3 Spirit” is used to position the significant role of the Thermaltake case, cooler, and power supply and at the same time, associates these systems with Performance, Silent Operation, and Thermal Conscious. While the benefit of product is communicated to consumers, the brand “Thermaltake” continues to be recognized for quality, reliability, and industry leadership.
The right hand side area of the front holds the power & reset button as well as the two LEDs for hard drive access (red) and power (blue). All the functions on the front are clearly labeled by black icons or text.
The mainboard slides out after removing seven thumb screws. There is a little metal handle at the bottom of the case, making it easy to pull out the mainboard. The two fans in the back of the tray are 60 mm and come with Molex connectors. It would have been nice to have mainboard headers as the mainboard could vary the fan speed according to temperature.
To gain access to the inside of the case, another three thumb screws need to be removed. The top can then be pulled of with a firm tug - very easy indeed.
Once the top is removed, the drive cage can be taken out, by removing two thumb screws and then pulling the cage back and out of the case. Once removed, the hard drive cage and 90 mm fan can be seen.
The drive cage itself is made of solid aluminum, as you can see the 7" drive bay will not hold an optical drive without the use of the metal plate, which was included in the blue, plastic bag. The 3.5" drive bay is covered by a aluminum cover.
Removing another two thumb screws and six tiny screws on top of the case, the PSU cage can be taken out. This is the only part of the case which may not withstand the weight of hardware installed. A large, heavy power supply will put a big strain on the construction.
The hard drive cage can be removed by unscrewing a single screw. All the edges of the cage are folded, eliminating the chance of cuts while installing the hard drives. Once that part was removed, we were left with the bare case. It is great to see such a modular case, as there is very little space to work with in small form factor cases.