Coolermaster USP 100 Mid Tower

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Coolermaster USP 100 Mid TowerOne of the companies named in the upper paragraph is Coolermaster. Coolermaster is one of those companies that no matter what range of case you are looking for they have you covered. From the budget Sileo and Centurion to the awesomely nice ATCS 840. I myself have been a big fan of the HAF 932. But Coolermaster right now is considering the budget minded individual with their next offering. The USP 100 is a mid tower that offers a change in styling that is gamer towards the enthusiast not over-the-top appearance but want some that is not plain and simple. The new red and black design bungled with a 550 watt eXtreme Power Plus PSU even made me thinking about using it in my next build. But is that enough to get you to consider the case? We will see.

Introduction to the Coolermaster USP 100

In order to dominate the mid-range tower market you have to release a fair share of cases. We see it from all the manufactures. Companies like Coolermaster, Thermaltake, NZXT and others have several cases that will only set you back a few bucks, less than $100. Then we have companies that are known to make cases that are far out of our reach producing cases now in this same range. Silverstone has a small assortment and Lian Li has their offspring Lan Cool building their lower end cases. Great move for all those involved. The companies make money and the consumer get a nice low dollar case.

One of the companies named in the upper paragraph is Coolermaster. Coolermaster is one of those companies that no matter what range of case you are looking for they have you covered. From the budget Sileo and Centurion to the awesomely nice ATCS 840. I myself have been a big fan of the HAF 932. But Coolermaster right now is considering the budget minded individual with their next offering. The USP 100 is a mid tower that offers a change in styling that is gamer towards the enthusiast not over-the-top appearance but want some that is not plain and simple. The new red and black design bungled with a 550 watt eXtreme Power Plus PSU even made me thinking about using it in my next build. But is that enough to get you to consider the case? We will see.

Coolermaster take on the USP 100

USP 100 (RC-P100) is a mid--tower that is created with enthusiast in mind, built with the classic black body structure and a sophisticated touch of crimson. Combined with eXtreme Power Plus 550W, USP 100 is exclusively available for a fully featured performance solution. USP 100 comes with superior airflow design that supports up to 4 fans. The front is fully meshed and the PSU placed at the bottom is aimed to achieve the optimal ventilating environment.


Specifications

Available Color Front bezel: red / Case body: black
 
Material Body: steel / Bezel: mesh and plastic
 
Dimension (W / H / D) 214 x 483 x 508 mm / 8.43 x 19.02 x 20 inch
 
Weight Net Weight: 7.2 kg/ 15.87 lbs
 
M/B Type Micro-ATX / ATX
 
5.25" Drive Bay 4 Exposed
 
3.5 Drive Bay 6 Hidden
1 Exposed
 
I/O USB 2.0 x 2 , MIC x 1, Audio x 1 (supports HD audio)
 
Expansion Slots 7
 
Cooling System Front: 120 x 25mm fan x 1 / Red LED / 1200 RPM / 19 dBA (pre-installed)
Bottom: 80 / 90 / 120 mm fan x1 (optional)
Rear: 80 / 90 / 120 mm fan x1 (optional)
Side: 80 / 90 / 120 mm fan x1 (optional)
 
Power Supply Standard ATX PS2 (optional) INCLUDED: eXtreme Power Plus 550w

Closer look at the outside

For those that looking for something different but not wanting to broke the bank to get, the new USP 100 may be right up your alley. The new case is a nice change from the normal. What is normal today? Well, we are seeing basically the same visual presents from most of the cases today. It seems that all today's cases consist of the same mesh favored design. Granted the design is nice but the number of cases being produced is atmospheric. The new USP 100 processes the same design but with a small twist. That twist would be red mesh with a break in the design due to the plastic gate with the Coolermaster logo power button. More on that later. At just over nineteen inches in height you will not be looking at a tall case. But one I would call regular size. And to continue the theme of 'regular' size we don't see the extra wide enclosure like that of the Sniper and HAF 932.

The USP 100 has four optical bays. Each of the bays continues the mesh theme. You will not believe the flow this new case has. Below the bays is a narrow plastic band that goes from one side to the other. In the middle of the band is the Coolermaster logo. The logo serves as the power button as well. Nice idea and surprising we done see more of this. Underneath is a mesh area that is protecting a 120mm red LED cooling fan. For addition air intake there are two vents (one on each side) also painted red. Above the bays is a narrow strip that is the power indicator. We will show you more of this after the build is done.

The top of the cases is about as plain as I have seen from a Coolermaster case in a long time. The rear has no ventilation whatsoever not even places for additional fans. Ahead of this is the I/O area of the case which consists of two USB ports side by side and two audio plugs.

Looking for window in your next case? I guess the USP 100 will not be your case of choice. Either of the two side panels have a window. But the left side panel has to vented areas that can be placement for two additional fans which could be between 80mm and 120mm. The rear of the USP 100 just as plain as the side panels. The only thing of real interest is the bottom mount PSU.

There is not much doing at the rear of the case. But we see the first sign of the power supply.


Closer look at the inside

Opening the case up for the world to see I saw a flash back from the past and a glance of the future. The past that I saw was the steel metal color that we have seen for many years. Because of the color theme of the outside I would see black inside as well. But that was not the case here. The future I saw was the cable management possibilities as well as the tool-less mounting options. All of each we will talk about.

Three of the four bays use plastic securing locks to hold whatever you decide to put into the cases. For smaller bays this case has seven. One bay make up what we thought was the fifth 5.25" bay. There are five bays that face outward for easier access. These also use plastic mechanisms to hold the drives in place. You can barely see the front mounted 120mm fan.

The motherboard tray has a few holes cut out to allow for some cable management. There are two holes at the very top of the case for the ATX connectors. A much larger cut-out for problem free access to the back of the motherboard to switch out coolers. A single hole resides at the bottom for a pass-thru for all the cables to go behind the motherboard tray. Any cable that can't pass to the rear of the tray can be secured using these plastic brackets.

The very bottom of the case has an exhaust opening for the power supply's cooling fan. And there is more space for another 120mm cooling fan.

The USP 100 will not win any awards for extra features at the back of the case. But everything is straight forwards and clean.


Power Supply

Specifications

Model RS550-PCARA3-US
 
Type Intel Form Factor ATX12V V2.3
 
Dimension 150 x 140 x 86 mm
or
5.91 x 5.52 x 3.39 inches
 
Input Voltage 110 ~ 115V / 220 ~ 230V
 
Input Current 8A@115Vac / 6.3A@230Vac
 
Input Frequency Range 47 ~ 63Hz
 
Power Good Signal 100 ~ 500ms
 
Hold Up Time >17ms
 
Efficiency 70% Typically
 
MTBF >100,000 Hours
 
Protection OVP / OPP / SCP
 
Operation Temperature 5~40 C (Nominal Input Voltage)
 
Fan 120mm fan
 
Certification Nemko / TUV / UL / CE / BSMI / FCC / GOST / C-tick
 
Warranty 2 years
 
UPC Code 884102003059

Features

  • Compliance with the newest Intel standard ATX 12V V2.3
  • Support dual +12V1 and +12V2 outputs for higher power usage
  • SATA Connector x 6
  • Two-year warranty
  • High reliability (MTBF > 100,000 hours
  • Protection design (OVP/OCP/OPP/SCP)
  • More than 70% better efficiency at typical load operation
  • 6+2Pin PCI-e Connector x 2 Connector x 6

Closer look

We will not spend a lot of time on the included power supply which is a 550 watts eXtreme Power Plus. The unit is definitely enough for a modest build but nothing more power than that. The efficiency rating of 70% which is quite low for today's standard. So, you may have to pay a few pennies more on your monthly electric bill.

It is equipped with a 120mm cooling fan that is more than capable of cooling the insides of the PSU. The black coating looks really nice even inside the bland gray interior of the USP 100. If you were planning on running multiple cards in this case you will be happy to know that it comes with dual 6-pin plugs and a single 6/2.


Conclusion

If I was in my local computer store looking for a new tower and saw the USP 100 sitting here, I would definitely give it a moment of my time. The outside of the case is very attractive. The red of the mesh and the other red accents make the USP 100 a delight to look at. Even with mesh being the new fad in computer cases Coolermaster give it their own twist with the red cooling and the integrating of the black plastic interrupting the flow of the mesh. And in this case that is a good thing. It was clever of how Coolermaster integrated the power button into the logo on the first.

If you are looking for a case with a window in the side panel you won't find it here. Just a couple of vented areas. I understand that Coolermaster did this to cut down on the cost of the case. And I know everyone is not a fan of windows. But I hope Coolermaster in the future offer this as an option. It would look really good with one. Even a small one.

The inside of the case is really nice and well organized. Cable management should not be a huge issue as the case resembles that of the original CM 690. As they share similar features within the tray. This isn't the only feature we see this budget case has that is common with Coolermaster. The quick release plastic mechanism that holds the optical drives in place is another welcomed option.

We love that Coolermaster included a power supply with this case. The eXtreme Power Plus 550 is more than enough to power a decent rig. We just wished it have a higher efficiency rating than the 70% it does have. But for less than $100 we can't have it all can we?

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