Antec GX505 Window SC System Building Notes
In this section of the review I want to go into some details about building with the Antec GX505 Window SC.
Here is a close up shot of the USB ports, and the tiny little HDD activity LED along the bottom of the photo. At the top is the fan controller switch. It’s a simple 3-way switch. The options are low, off, and high. All the fan leads are labeled so you’ll know exactly what fan is connected and which ones are not.
There are a few things I thought I might mention about the 5.25″ drive bays. As I mentioned before, you have 3 bays available, but the 3rd one is dedicated to a 3.5″ floppy drive. I think Antec really could of ditched this in favor of another 5.25″ bay, or better yet, another 2.5″ SSD drive. Also, at the very top of the case, you can see all the front panel wires spilling out of the area where the top most 5.25″ drive bay is. That mess of wires is going to have to be dealt with if you want to use that top bay. The wires are clumped up and get in the way of the optical drive I tried to install to test clearance.
Connecting optical drives is easy. The white knobs simply screw into the mounting holes on the side of the optical drive. Aligning the drives to the front of the panel should be a breeze since the knobs can slide a few inches in either direction.
The HDD cage at the bottom has enough room for four 3.5″ HDD drives. Sadly, instead of using trays, so that you could use either HDD or SSD drives, we have a snap-on rail system. The rails are imprinted with an ‘R’ and an ‘L’ for which side of the HDD they are to be mounted on. The rails snap on easy enough, then slide in and click into place snuggly. It is a very simple system that allows you to get your HDD drives installed very quickly.
The lone 2.5″ SSD mount on top of the HDD cage doesn’t seem to have been thought out very well. Mounting an SSD requires 2 screws to lock it into place. Which kind of ruins the point of tool-less with all the other drives.
Lastly, on the bottom of the chassis you have a mounting location for another 2.5″ SSD drive. This spot here really seems like it doesn’t belong here. I’ve seen the space behind the PSU used for this before, but with the mounts squarely in the middle of the chassis, it looks like cables connecting to the back of the SSD might get a bit cramped since that space directly behind it is the main area of the cable management space. I think if Antec moved the mounting holes another inch toward the windowed side of the chassis it could lesson those potential problems.
First thing I’d like to mention is the PCI expansion slots. I’m really disappointed in Antec for this one. The PCI slots are the break away type, so once you remove a slot you’ll have to find another PCI bracket if you change configurations and need to cover any of the slots back up again.
Everything else here is fine. Antec has pre-installed standoffs for a full ATX motherboard. The CPU cut-out area of the motherboard tray is generous and shouldn’t get in the way of any aftermarket CPU heat sinks you’ll want to use. I could not find any official CPU heat sink clearance data. But judging from the case dimensions you are not going to stuff anything too large into this case.
There is water cooling grommets just above the 120mm exhaust fan, but the only type of cooler I can feasibly see being used is a 120mm unit mounted in the exhaust fan location. There is just absolutely no clearance in the top of this case to run a 240mm unit. You can tell just by taking a look at where the top mounted fans are sitting in the case compared to where the motherboard input/output shield is going to be mounted. The motherboard sits very high up in the case. If Antec had made this case just another inch or so taller, that option would probably work.
The PSU mounting location is fairly standard. You can mount the PSU with the fan facing down or up. Antec included some nice foam rails for the PSU to sit on giving it some clearance from the bottom of the chassis so you do not scratch your PSU or the case.