Thermaltake Spedo Advance Tower

spedoThis new case that Ramsom was telling me about was the Thermaltake Spedo Advance. The Spedo offers an interior look that many will think is attractive. What the Spedo has that everybody will agree is on the inside. The case offers nearly unmatched cable management, very easy installation, cooling, and air ventilation that puts in the top tier of great cases. With all the new stuff the case has, the other parts such as spaciousness, storage, and cooling options were not sacrificed. I will now take you on a visual tour of the Spedo case from Thermaltake.

Introduction

When it comes to cases there are very few advancements that a company can make to make their product stand out. The whole tool-less concept has been around for ages. Drive mounting mechanisms can only go so far, and really how many fans can you stick into one case? All these so-called advancements have been used in even the cheapest cases. So what can we really see in the future when it comes to cases that will make us say “Wow I want that case.”? Well, Silverstone and Lian Li have ventured into exotic design when it comes to exterior looks. Others have decided on extreme bling to draw attention to their products. Talks with Ramsom from Thermaltake has led me to a new case that promises to be visually pleasing, as well as having some technical achievements that will get a lot of attention from the masses.

This new case that Ramsom was telling me about was the Thermaltake Spedo Advance. The Spedo offers an interior look that many will think is attractive. What the Spedo has that everybody will agree is on the inside. The case offers nearly unmatched cable management, very easy installation, cooling, and air ventilation that puts in the top tier of great cases. With all the new stuff the case has, the other parts such as spaciousness, storage, and cooling options were not sacrificed. I will now take you on a visual tour of the Spedo case from Thermaltake.

Thermaltake on the Spedo

Thermaltake Spedo is under much heated discussion online since its launch not long ago. The exciting racing images attached to the product with its fascinating and innovative features never seen before are clearly arousing the extreme nature of topnotch PC enthusiasts around the world. As PC players themselves, Thermaltake engineers are not yet satisfied; today, they give us their latest upgrade for Spedo— the Easy Swap Package for ultimate performance.

The HDD Easy Swap Package has been added to the upgrading accessories for making things easier for users; it will allow you to remove your HDD without disconnecting the SATA and PSU cables. Spedo supports up to 6 Easy swapping devices which also works smoothly with the “HDD relocation” feature of Spedo. HDD swapping can be very annoying, but with the combination of the two unique features, disconnecting 5.25 and 3.25 drive bay with HDD is simple and easy. This might seem like a small change, but you’ll be surprised how it put a smile on your face in the actual application.

Packaging and Contents

The packaging for the Spedo was very appealing to me for one reason above all, and that is the image of the speeding Mustang on the front. As a diehard Mustang fanatic I got a kick out of it. Trust me though, I am not going to let that interfere with my reviewing of the Spedo. Besides that there are various images of the case and it’s features. After admiring the box I finally got around to opening it which revealed a well protected case wrapped in a cloth-like bag.

Inside the case is a box of accessories that consists of many items for building a more complete system. Inside are adapter plates to convert the HDD bay to 5.25″ units, and a 5.25″ adapter to convert a single 3.5″ item to 5.25″. Besides screws and bolts another piece of equipment that is a godsend is the extensions for ATX and auxiliary connectors to the motherboard.

Specifications

Model VI90001W2Z
Case Type Full Tower
Dimension �iH x W x D�j 536.0 x 232.0 x 610.0 mm
(21.1 x 9.1x 24.0 inch)
Net Weight 13.0 kg / 28.7 lb
Side Panel Transparent window
Color Exterior & Interior : Black
Material Front bezel: Metal mesh
Chassis: SECC
Cooling System Front (intake) :
140 x 140 x 25 mm Red LED fan, 1000rpm,
16 dBA
Rear (exhaust) :
Two 120 x 120 x 25 mm TurboFan, 1300rpm, 17dBA
Top (exhaust) :
230 x 230 x 20 mm fan, 800rpm, 15dBA
Bottom (intake) : 120 x 120 mm fan (optional)
CPU (exhaust) : 120 x 120 mm fan (optional)
Fanbar (intake) :
120 x 120 x 25 mm TurboFan, 1300rpm, 17dBA
Side (intake) :
230 x 230 x 20 mm fan, 800rpm, 15dBA
Drive Bays 5.25” drive bay : 7
3.5” drive bay : 1(Converted from one 5.25” drive bay)
3.5” drive bay (Hidden) : 6
Expansion Slots 8
Motherboards Micro ATX , Standard ATX
I/O Ports USB 2.0 x 2, e-SATA connector x 1, HD Audio
Advanced Thermal Chamber Yes
Cable Management Yes

Features

– Revolutionary design “C.R.M.3” Cable Routing Management 3
– Innovative design “A.T.C.3” Advance Thermal Chamber 3
– Fancool 8 – Support up to 8 fans for greater thermal performance
– Easy install – Advanced tool-free mechanism for 5.25”, 3.5” and PCI devices
– HDD relocation – 3.5” HDD cage swappable to 5.25” drive bay
– Hot swapping design for side 23cm fan
– Adjustable fan bar redirecting airflow to CPU or VGA for better thermal performance
– Removable & 90-degree rotated HDD cage for easier installation
– Bottom-placed PSU design for better and easier installation


Closer look externally

Before we get this party started I need to inform you all that Thermaltake offers the Spedo in two different favors. There is the Advanced version that has many more features than the regular Spedo. This would include the dual 230mm fans in the side and top panels of the case, the advance thermal chambers, cable routing management features, (which we will talk about more later) and it is heavier than the regular version.

The front of the case is not over bearing like many cases we are seeing these days. It is very subtle compared to the Xaser and Armor series. The front is mostly made of mesh which has been a very popular addition for a lot of manufacturers. The top consists of the popular Thermaltake logo and the only other thing that will draw any attention at all is the power and reset buttons to the right.

The top of the case has a lot going on. First there are the I/O ports for your external devices. There are dual USB ports as well as a single eSATA outlet. Thermaltake chose to do without the rarely used fire wire port. We also can’t forget about the audio ports. Just behind the ports are a series of blades that are used to allow warm air to escape the system. Backing up the rear is the ventilation area for the massive 230mm cooling fan that is pre-mounted in the case.

The side panels of the Spedo offer their own method of air ventilation. The not often removed right side panel has dual mesh areas to allow air to move across the drives. The second opening allows air from the optional 120mm cooling fan that can be mounted to the back of the motherboard to escape. The left side panel consists of a rather small window compared to the size of the panel. Part of the window is a large 230mm cooling fan that is aimed right over the CPU area of the motherboard.

Are you a fan buff? If you are you will like the fact that Thermaltake added not only one, but two 120mm fans to the rear of the Spedo. To accommodate a water-cooling setup there are two inlets for tubing. It looks feasible that tubing up to 1/2″ diameter should easily fit.

The Spedo uses retractable feet on the bottom of the case to stabilize it.


Closer look internally

Thermaltake designed the Spedo in order for it to provide all the necessary cooling to the more important parts of your system, and at the same time keep warm air from entering the spaces of items that are effected negatively by heat. In doing this Thermaltake as come up with the A.T.C. 3 or the Advance Thermal Chamber 3. In short all this is are chambers created using plastic panels to section off the case where a lot of heat is generated.

Another cool feature on the inside is the cable management system as known as C.R.M. 3 or Cable Routing Management 3. This is a series of holes in the motherboard tray as well as plastic plates that anchor excessive cabling against the back of the motherboard tray. With the help of a few plastic ties Thermaltake made it easier for the user to deal with the pain of making the inside of the case as clean and neat as possible.

To give you some idea of how much room the Spedo has, the motherboard is mounted right in the middle with a lot open area at the top of the case and the open area where you would place the PSU at the bottom. The overall layout of the Spedo is no different than other cases. What I did love about this case is the internals are all black. No paint or powder coating needed to keep the contrast of the case going. Honestly, this is something all case manufacturers need to adopt.

The way the case comes out of the box, the front has room for six hard drives and seven 5.25 inch devices. All devices are installed up front in a tool less fashion. All that is needed is a pull of a lever or pushing of a button to get all your drives installed. We will get more into this in the Install section of the review. Behind the HDD cage is a single 120mm meant to cool installed drives. The drive bays can be removed and placed in the 5.25″ bays using special brackets included with the case. The plastic piece you see in the last image is a mounting location for another 120mm fan that can slide up and down to cool different areas of the case.

The motherboard tray is not removable and in this case may not be necessary as there is a lot of room to play around with. There are no pre-install motherboard standoffs so you have to do the little extra work required to mount your motherboard. Thermaltake provides inlets to allow the routing of cables from the back to the motherboard area. The circular opening at the top of the tray is another location for a 120mm cooling fan to help cool off the back of the motherboard.

The bottom of the case has yet another opening for a 120mm cooling fan as well as an opening for the fan of the PSU. It seems Thermaltake opted to put a fan opening in every open area of this new case, and because this is a bottom mounted PSU case, extra kudos goes out to Thermaltake for providing the extension for the power connectors.

The rear of the case is not without its own cooling options. In this area we have dual 120mm fans, and cards placed in the expansion slots are secured in place via plastic locks.

Here is a close-up of the top mounted 230mm exhaust fan. Also a shot of the rear of the motherboard tray to give you some pre-purchase install ideas.


Installation

There are so many options when putting together this box, but in order to cut down the time of the review we will focus on the main areas of the build. To start off we have the Gigabyte Ex58 motherboard mounted to the tray. When installing it you get an idea of how big this case really is. There is more than enough room all the way around. What some will like most about this case is the room available for water-cooling components.

Next we have in place is the HDD mounted inside one of the hard drive holders. This process was very simple and all that is required is lining up the HDD to small pins inside the holder and pressing four buttons along the side of the holder, and simply placing the holder back in it’s slot.

Mounting of our PSU was also a non-issue.

For those that want to place their hard drives in the upper or lower half of the case the whole HDD cage can be removed from it’s location and moved. This is ideal for replacement of a water pump or small res.

Further into the build we began the installation of the ATC3 system.

Ready to go.

Conclusion

The first thing that I admire about the Spedo was the use of lines on the front of the case. Thermaltake did well when they decided not to go extreme with the design. The Spedo is going to hit the market as an advanced case that will fit many different types of individuals from gamers to professionals to enthusiasts. For this reason I feel the design will be liked by many. Another characteristic of the Spedo that goes beyond others in the same class is the fact the case has a black interior. If you take a look through the case section of any forum you will find the comments that users want a black interior when a case has a black exterior. It looks like Thermaltake listened to these people and acted according.

The two main features of the Spedo are the ATC3 (Advance Thermal Chamber 3) and the CRM3 (Cable Routing Management 3) options which are good ideas. I like the idea of the CRM3 features more as I felt it was more useful as it allowed the interior of the case to remain clean and neat. As for the ATC3, the idea is grand but a little over-the-top. I am assuming the technology works but when a case has as good circulation as the Spedo does, the feature is not needed. I also know many like to see their GPU setup when installed in their case. I guess the user does have the option not to install the plates if they don’t want to.

Room is not what is lacking in the Spedo. The unit has enough room to support several terabytes of HDD space as well as seven 5.25″ devices. I guess this is the reason it is classified as a full tower. There is also a ton of room around the motherboard and between the motherboard and drive area. This is ideal for anyone wanting to water-cool the Spedo.

Cooling is another one of the Spedo’s strong points. The case can house eight large fans, two of them being 230mm, and all of them are quiet. With this many fans you are able to place cool air and absorb warm air to and from all the important components of the system. With clever modding multiple water-cooling rads can take the place of some of the fans. Nice design for a multi-loop setup.

The above four paragraphs tell you of some of the great features of the Spedo and now I want to state some things that I did not care about the case. A small warning there was only one thing I did not like. The first was the ATC3 panels. The were a little flimsy and awkward to install. It all seems simple but when trying to install them, they did not want to install easily.

The Spedo Advance goes for about $220 and up which is a fair price for a case offering as much as the Spedo does.

We would like to thank the guys at Thermaltake for sending out the Spedo for us to review.

~ END PAGE 6 ~


Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments