Builders and enthusiasts must be very careful when it comes to choosing the right chassis for their rig. Aside from the fact that it will determine the types of hardware you can house inside, it is also the focal point of rig being that it is the first thing that would be seen. Choosing the right chassis depend on what you need and what you want to achieve. Some pick by size, some by appeal or attraction. While the majority of young builders nowadays prefer to show off their rig and everything inside it, there are also those that prefer the opposite. Some prefer a rig that doesn't attract attention, something that would blend in with the background of their office or room. A rig with no flashy LED lighting, no windows to view how clean or dirty the insides look and less noise as much as possible. If you are one of those that are looking for a silent, stealthy and classy chassis for your build, Xigmatek has something to offer you, the Midgard III mid-tower chassis. Built for class, stealth and silence, let us see what the Midgard III has to offer.
Xigmatek's Take on the Midgard III
MIDGARD III is ahead of its time, in technology and looks. The main innovative feature is integrated QI technology meaning when you come home from a long day at work or school you can come home and charge your mobile cellular device freely and effortlessly without the hassle of using a cord.
- Includes pre-installed high performance silent (black with black fan blades) Xigmatek XOF fan with FCB (Fluid Circulative Bearing) for ultimate exhaust capabilities.
- Hidden I/ O panel includes 2 x Super-Speed USB 3.0, 2 x High-Speed USB 2.0, HD Audio In/Out jacks, Power/Reset.
- Capable of mounting ATX, Micro ATX, mini-ITX Motherboards. (with backside hole for CPU cooler)
- Innovative 6 X 3.5” HDD can be converted to 2.5” SSD for easy mix and match.
- Integrated Qi (wireless charging dock on top panel)
- Newly designed intake from elevated panels insures maximum airflow and minimizes sound pollution.
- Standard P/S2 ATX/EPS power supply units on downside space with anti-vibration rubber.
- Can mount up to 330mm Gaming Graphic cards
- Black Grand Piano paint on panels creates luxury and prestige.
- Thick side panels makes the chassis strong and secure.
- CPU cooler support : 160mm
- Add-on card slot X 7
(W) 200 x (H) 515 x (D)409 mm
5.25" External x 3 (Both side tool-free holders)
2.5/3.5" Internal HDD x 6 (By hard drive tray)
ATX, Micro ATX, mini-ITX (with backside hole for CPU cooler)
Standard P/S2 ATX/EPS power supply units on downside space with anti-vibration rubber.
Front Fan: 120mm fan x 2 available
Rear Fan: Preinstalled black/black blade XOF fan 120mm fan x 1
Bottom Fan: 120mm fan x 1 optional
Top Fan: 12/14cm fan x 2 optional WATER COOLING
Max. 300mm length and 50mm height for radiator and cooling
Top Panel (hidden): Reset button, USB3.0 x 2, USB2.0 x 2, Audio in/out x 1 (HD Audio),
160mm height support
Qi Wireless Charging Dock
The Midgard III comes in a colored and informative box. You should be able to read the highlighted features of the chassis in the box.
Coming out of the box, the glossy parts of the chassis are covered with plastic to prevent scratches.
Inside the chassis is a brown box containing all sorts of screws and some cable ties as well as the user's manual.
Closer Look - Exteriors
There are two modes available in the Midgard III. One being the default wherein it is built for maximum silence and stealth which is the image on the left. Then there's a configuration where you can remove the front and top panel to expose the vents for better cooling performance but the silence and stealth is greatly decreased as seen on the image on the left. On the right, you can remove the covering in the top and front panel to expose the fans and vents for better cooling and ventilation as seen on the image on the right.
Here's another look of the different modes in a different angle.
Below is a look at the top of the Midgard III. You can see the square power button on the far side and there's a Xigmatek branding on the near side. In the middle is the area for the wireless charging.
The power button has a orange lighting to it for you to spot it in the dark.
The far side of the top panel can be removed to allow direct airflow.
Both the sides of the Midgard III looks the same. When all the panels are closed, air comes in and goes out in a vent on the sides.
The front panel USB ports, audio ports and reset button are well hidden in the front panel with a shield that slides up and down.
Here are the front and rear of the chassis. The front can house 2 x 120 mm fans while the rear can house a 120mm fan.
Lastly, here's the Midgard III's bottom. The feet are made of rubber but rather flat unlike typical case feet.
Closer Look - Interior
Moving on to the interiors of the Midgard III, let us start from the top.
The top panel can be removed from the rear end but just pulling it up. No need to unscrew anything whatsoever. It will reveal the mounting area for 2 x 120mm or 2 x 140mm fans.
Here's a look at the top fan mounting holes from the inside. Note that you can mount the fans either in the exterior or the interior of the chassis. At Xigmatek's site, they mounted the fan outside but we will mount the fans inside which you will see later on in this review.
This is the wireless charging module behind the top panel.
Moving on to the bottom of the case's interior, you can remove the bottom panel by unscrewing the screws located in the four feet of the chassis.
At the rear end of the bottom, you can access the fan filters for the power supply.
On the front end of the bottom, you can see 6 screws which are holding the drive cages inside the chassis. You can unscrew them and remove all the drive cages inside if desired. There's also a mounting area for a 120mm fan if desired.
Now here's a look at the entire interior of the Midgard III below. The routing holes have rubber grommets to protect the cables as well as hide the gap.
Here you can see the vented PCIE shields and the 2 tubing holes for exterior watercooling setups.
The front of the chassis holds the drive cages which are behind the 2 x 120mm fan mounting areas in the front to effectively cool your hard drives.
There are 2 main drive modules in the chassis, each module can handle up to 3 drives making it a total of 6 drives the chassis can support.
- Processor: Intel i3-2100
- Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-V
- Cooler: Noctua NH-L12 with CRYORIG XL140 fan
- Memory: Kingston HyperX 10-Year Anniversary 2x4GB 1866Mhz
- Graphics Card: Gigabyte GTX 770 OC 2GB
- Hard Drives: 2x 3.5" Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB / 1 x 2.5" Seagate Momentus 500GB
- Power Supply: Be Quiet! Dark Power Pro 10 850 watts
- Chassis: Xigmatek Midgard III Mid Tower Chassis
- Fan Controller: Lamptron FC5V3
- Fans: Cooler Master Sickleflow RED LED (2000 RPM)
For the installation, let us first start with the hard drives.
The hard drive holders in the drive cage modules can support both 3.5" and 2.5" drives.
With 2.5" drives, you need to screw the drive into place.
With 3.5" drives, you only need to mount the hard drive secured into place.
Then mount the drive holders inside the drive modules.
Here's a look at the entire installation. The graphics card we used is quite long and as you can see the chassis can accommodate even a longer graphics card.
Cable management is a bit challenging with the back end only having around 1.75cm of space to deal with. We could route all the cables at the back but we find it easier to just have it routed in the front knowing that it will not be seen anyway since the side panels doesn't have a window.
Here's a look at the cable management at the back.
Now here's the complete build from the outside on the two different modes.
Let us first start with how the Midgard III appealed to us. If you are one of those that want to show off their hardware inside the chassis, this chassis is something you need to avoid from the start. But if you want a classy case with a sleek design, blends in a formal background like an office, stealthy and silent, this is the chassis for you. The glossy top and front panels really give the Midgard III a classy look in my book. Really had a hard time taking photos with it since it easily captures reflections. It does act like a fingerprint magnet but if you refrain from touching the glossy parts, it should look fine in any day.
The Midgard III gets an average score in this one. We like the fact that it can house an ATX board, long graphics can and up to 6 fans. However, cable management is not easy but doable. Cooler options is somewhat limited. With the case being 20cm wide only, tall coolers such as a Noctua NH-D14 or the CRYORIG R1 Ultimate we reviewed last week must be avoided or any tall cooler for that matter. You also can't mount a 140mm radiator inside whether the rear or the top but the top can handle a 240mm radiator.
Stealth and Silence
Going back to the images above, you can clearly see how well the panels can hide LED lighted fans. The only lighting you can see on this chassis is the power button and the HDD LED activity lights on the side of the chassis which can be disabled if desired. As for silence, we tested the setup with 2000 RPM Cooler Master sickleflow fans. At 1500 RPM, noise levels are around 67dB at a person's distance away from the chassis with the front and top panels off. With the panels installed, noise levels are lower by 5dB. Having the fans running at 800 RPM, you can barely hear anything coming from the chassis.
Surprisingly, gaming with the panels on, configured on silence and stealth mode is not as bad as I thought it would be. Temperature readings inside the chassis sure is hotter by around 5C which isn't so bad.
Final Thoughts and Conclusion
The Xigmatek Midgard III sure is stealthy and silent with class. If you are looking for such chacteristics for your build, this is certainly the chassis for you. Based on our observation, there isn't really much competition when it comes to stealthy and silent cases. One we could remember are some of what Bitfenix is offering but most are in smaller form factors. The wireless charging feature was something we cannot test since we don't have a compatible device. Having it is a bonus but not really much today considering there are only a handful of devices with such capability so far. Perhaps in the future it would be a helpful feature. We found no other issues with the chassis except for the cooler limitation and the slight difficulty in cable management.
As for the Midgard III's entire construction, the aluminum parts is very solid and the motherboard mounting area is very sturdy. Based on our testing, it is thicker than usual and up to par with full towers coming from Cooler Master. One thing the case does lack is the number of stock fans. The sample we recieved only had one fan included. You would need to purchase at least four more to achieve the kind of configuration we had. We contacted Xigmatek about this and they said the chassis can come in bundled with more fans depending on the region of distribution. We sure hope they could add at least two more fans with the chassis. Obviously stock performance of the chassis would be very bad with only a single fan. Other than those issues mentioned above, we are delighted with the Midgard III overall. We really love the silence and stealth which is achived in a classy way. The glossy finish added a nice touch to it because without it the entire case would look dull and plain. As of this moment, the Xigmatek Midgard III is not yet available in Amazon or Newegg but Xigmatek said the standard retail price of the chassis will be around $99.00 which is around the price range of another silent chassis in the likes of a Fractal Design Define R4 being sold for $99.99 at Amazon. However, we feel that the Midgard III has the slight advantage due to its flexibility in changing modes and adjusting the ventilation if desired. In conclusion, if you are looking for a silent and stealthy chassis that will suppress any LED lighting coming from fans or your motherboard and hide all the hardware inside that you didn't give time to look neat, we highly recommend the Midgard III!
- Silence and stealth
- Classy and modern look
- Good graphics card clearance
- Switching modes (maximum airflow to maximum silence)
- Lacking stock fans
- Challenging cable management
- Cooler limitations