SilverStone Raven RV04 Case Review


<< PREVIOUS            NEXT >>

Building in the RV04

Now for the fun part! Building a system in a case is the best way to identify any potential issues, so let’s get to it.


There aren’t many additional accessories included with the RV04, most items are already attached or installed. On the left is the GPU support bracket (with three card supports that attach to the brace), while the right side depicts the three pairs of brackets for swapping out the front 180mm AP fans with three 120mm fans – essentially, these are for mounting a 360mm radiator and fans to the front of the chassis. The bag of screws is typical of SilverStone cases – while a few thumbscrews are included, you’ll definitely need your screwdriver to work with the RV04 along with a little luck to figure out which screws go where. I’m definitely spoiled by cases like Corsair’s Air 540, which is completely tool-less and a joy to change out hardware in – SilverStone cases are known for their engineering, not their user-friendliness. Still, I can’t fault them too much for this – it’s nice to be “treated like an adult” in a sense, but it’ll make compulsive tinkerers a little frustrated.


At least the top and side hinged panels are afffixed by thumbscrews, and are thus easily removed. Both side panels need to be removed in order to remove the top plastic assembly – this is done to assist with securing the case with the Kensington slot on the windowed panel. If the case is locked, it would defeat the purpose if you could just remove the top separately.


The PSU installs neatly on a set of rails that run the entire length of the chassis, so the RV04 will definitely fit any length power supply you choose to use (even more so if you aren’t using any optical drives). The top filter (and the chassis overall) is designed for the PSU to have its own isolated intake, but I suppose there isn’t anything stopping you from flipping the PSU upside down and using it as a chassis exhaust (if you’re okay with pulling hot air straight off of a graphics card). Obviously SilverStone’s recommendation is the one that makes the most sense here, and has the side benefit of placing the main cables from this semi-modular power supply right next to the cable routing holes.


That gives us a good excuse to take our first look at the motherboard tray of the RV04. The cable routing holes are pretty generous and there are adequate tie-down points located in strategic places to assist with further cable management. The rolled edges at the front and bottom give a little extra peace of mind for running SATA and power cables to drives, and there’s even a dedicated routing hole for the CPU AUX cable. This cable run is usually the longest one in most chassis, but the inverted ATX orientation doesn’t make this longer than any other standard ATX case – just make sure your power supply is relatively modern (and usually above 500W) and you probably won’t have any issues.


Here’s a trick that’ll make routing that cable MUCH easier – just route it and plug it in to the motherboard before replacing the removable motherboard tray. That’s right, the RV04 allows you to install the motherboard normally or outside of the case. You’ll need to remove three screws to do it, but it’s an entirely different experience to install a motherboard (especially with a large air cooler on the CPU) on a tray that is removable. The inverted orientation means you’ll probably need to detach a few cables if you want to remove the tray once the system is completely assembled (or just flip the case upside down!), but this isn’t that much of an inconvenience compared to the utility of a removable motherboard tray. Besides, you can still utilize the CPU cooler cutout to install CPU coolers like any other case if you don’t want to mess up your cables.


Five 3.5″ drives can fit in the removable drive cage, with another two in the hot-swap brackets on the floor of the case. The drive cage removes with a thumbscrew and two regular screws, and the spacing between the drives still leaves room for a bit of airflow to the CPU. If you plan on using 2.5″ drives, you can actually fit both 3.5″ drives and a full compliment of 2.5″ drives in the tool-less bays on the floor of the RV04. I missed them the first time, but there are cutouts in these tool-less bays for SATA connectors – upon closer inspection, it’s actually a pretty smart layout (all cables would go towards the center, making cable management significantly easier if you choose to take advantage of these drive mounts on the floor for 2.5″ drives).  Solid State Drives are nice in that you can mount them anywhere, but it would be nice to see some tool-less cages for these smaller drives as they are becoming very common in enthusiast builds.


<< PREVIOUS            NEXT >>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>