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Last updated: 07/29/03

hx08.gif (11037 bytes)If you are looking for good case for a network file server, the AOpen HX08 full-tower computer case, with a 13-drive capacity and a 300 Watt ATX power supply, may be just the ticket.


ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Bent metal.  The case is made from 1 mm steel.  The edges are bent in to strengthen it and reduce the possibility of cuts during assembly.  The top and each of the sides are secured at the back of the case with two screws each.  The top panel looks like a shallow-inverted box.  One must first remove it to get the sides off.  They slide off to the rear.  This is a security feature.  There is small triangular piece of metal, called a lock tag, with a hole at one apex  and another in the middle which screws to the top of chassis underneath the top panel and the apex with the hole pokes out through a slot in the back of the top panel like a hasp.  One can then pad-lock the whole case.  The case is solidly reinforced and has a hefty "feel." 

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Card cage.   The motherboard and expansion cards are mounted into what could be described as file drawer laid on its side.  After removing four screws at the rear of the case and disconnecting the cables plugged into the motherboard, etc., one can slide the whole thing out the back of the case.  It somewhat defeats the purpose of putting a padlock on the case.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Plastic.  The front panel has an attractive appearance.  Gone are the useless turbo LED and switch, and the keylock.  The remaining LEDs, switches, and manufacture's label are conveniently placed with the power switch at the very top of the case and rest well off the floor.  The panel is quite securely fastened to the chassis with solid plastic tabs which make fairly it easy to remove.  There are two plastic assemblies, with two feet each which securely snap to the bottom of the case (yes, if you "try" hard enough, I'll bet you can manage to break them off).   The feet can be swung out and clicked into place for stability and clicked inward for transportation.  All of the plastic is solid stuff.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Fans.  You can really cool this box.  Besides the power supply and CPU fans there are provisions to add two muffin fans at the top of the case. A third one can be fitted into a interface card guide, which snaps into the lower front of the case, and also protects the speaker.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Drive bays.  The case has 13 drive bays: one exposed and seven hidden 3 1/2" bays, and five exposed 5 1/4" bays.  There are two removable 3 1/2" cages, a four-drive cage above the power supply and a three-drive cage below the 5 1/4" bays.  Each is secured with two screws and easily removed.  The remaining 3 1/2" bay is exposed and located at the top-front--right where it should be for the floppy drive.  Drives are easily installed without rails.  I would have liked another exposed 3 1/2 drive for a Zip drive, etc.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Expansion board slots.  The case has seven slots.  All of the slots come equipped with removable slot covers (not those annoying knock-outs found in some cases).

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