Full-Tower Final Thoughts
I really enjoyed working with the AZZA XT1 case. The overall build quality and functionality are top notch. The fact that it uses high quality Japanese steel makes the case stronger and more durable so it is less likely to be bent or damaged. I really had no problems with cable management and tying them down because there were so many tie-down points at the back of the motherboard. The motherboard cutouts are also rounded to keep cables from getting cut. This is important especially for very tight cables. Airflow was also adequate with this case thanks to the large top 230mm fan. I did notice a few drops in temperatures in comparison to a case with dual 120mm fans strapped to the top.
There are also some design flaws that I came across while building. The only thing that really disappointed me was that I couldn’t mount a 140mm fan to the bottom of the case. The mounts are there for a 140mm fan but I cannot install one here because it will hit the wires to the circuit board for the hot-swappable drive bay. This makes it physically impossible to install a 140mm fan unless you remove the hot-swappable drive bay circuit board or just install a 120mm fan instead. I also think it will be much more convenient if removing the front panel did not require the removal of the top panel. And lastly, the removal of the side panels on both sides were difficult to remove and replace. The handles to pull off the side panels are much smaller than usual. This makes it difficult to get a hold on to pull them off. These are just minor design flaws that can be worked around, but this is still an excellent case for what it is.
AZZA XT1 Conclusion
In terms of performance, I think it is best to first rate this case by how it came straight out of the box and then rate it on its flexibility to add more to it. Built with a 140mm red LED intake fan, another 140mm red LED fan on the side panel, a standard 120mm rear fan, and a top 230mm red LED fan at the top, the AZZA XT1 case comes ready to cool right out of the box. These fans also run very quiet while providing adequate air cooling to your system components. But some enthusiasts will like more beef and prefer something other than just air cooling, that is why there are four water cooling retention holes for a custom water cooling system if air cooling is not enough. This gives a lot of flexibility to add more for people who will like to use a custom water cooling system.
This will not be a gaming case if it did not have a side window and a ton of bright LEDs. Someone in the market for a red and black theme will be very satisfied with the AZZA XT1. In terms of appearance, the case looks almost like something you would see from a science fiction movie. The four fan grill that can be attached to the front and top of the case really completes the system. Even though these grills do not filter dust particles, they do make the overall looks much more appealing to the eye. There is no performance difference in terms of air cooling when these grills are removed or attached, so it is all a matter of your personal preference whether you like the grills removed or attached.
The overall build quality is top notch with high quality Japanese steel. I experienced no problems with flexing and bending while I was moving the case around with everything installed. The steel is very strong and can definitely handle even some of the toughest force against it. The AZZA XT1 is well constructed and this is something any enthusiast will expect in a high end case.
In terms of functionality, I was expecting more than just six internal 3.5 inch drives. This may be because of the fact that there are already four 5.25 inch drive bays along with the bottom hot-swappable drive bay at the very bottom. But who really uses up to six 3.5 inch drives for storage especially if they are buying this case for gaming? The AZZA XT1 also accommodates XL-ATX motherboards for even some of the largest and bulkiest motherboards. It also fits graphics cards that are up to 340mm long. With so much room for XL-ATX motherboards and expansion for multiple crossfire and SLI configurations, air cooling may not be enough. But then again, the capabilities of water cooling are there if you need it.
As of March 2014, the AZZA XT1 sells online for $109.99 (Newegg | Amazon). At this price range, many enthusiast will expect more than just a normal computer case. But as for me, I just could not find the selling point of this case to be honest. Yes it has pretty LED fans, a large 230mm fan, water cooling capabilities, but there are other cases with these same features at a much lower price point. Also with some of the design flaws that I mentioned earlier, I would expect a case at this price range to have a better design. I think this case could do better in the market if it were to be sold at a lower price point considering there are other cheaper cases that have the same features.
This is a fantastic case overall. I think an enthusiast would be very satisfied with the overall build quality, the functionality, and the flexibility that the AZZA XT1 case delivers. I mean it doesn’t try to be something that it isn’t. It’s also a very eye attracting computer case that will appeal to most gamers. It does what it should, it’s not suppose to sing and dance. It just works. The AZZA XT1 will make an excellent case for a new build or someone upgrading from a cheaper case.
+ High quality Japanese steel construction
+ Very heavy in weight
+ Lots of interior room for expansion
+ Preinstalled 230mm red LED top fan
+ Tall rubber feets allow bottom fans to intake large amounts of air
+ Accommodates XL-ATX motherboards and VGA cards up to 340mm
+ Red LED fans are quiet and bright
+ Looks great to a gamer
– No special features as selling point
– Must remove top panel before removing front panel
– Cannot install 140mm bottom fan unless hot-swappable circuit board is removed
– Hard to remove side panels
Final Score: 8.80 out of 10.
Quality Recognition: Benchmark Reviews Silver Tachometer Award.
COMMENT QUESTION: What do you like/dislike about the AZZA XT1 Full-Tower Gaming case?