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Last updated: 2/3/98

hx45.gif (12757 bytes)I use the AOpen HX45 ATX form-factor, mid-tower computer case for most of the computers I build.  It is an excellent choice for those who are going to build their own computer. The case looks good, is furnished with an ample assortment of hardware, is easy to work with, and, owing to a sturdy shipping carton and packing, consistently arrives here in unblemished condition.  Now for the other features...

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 cover easily slides on from the back and is secured at the back with three screws.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Plastic.  The front panel has an attractive appearance.  Gone are the useless turbo LED and switch and the keylock--good riddance!  The panel is quite securely fastened to the chassis with solid plastic tabs which makes it easy to snap on and off.   The speaker is inserted in a molded expansion card guide assembly which is conveniently already snapped into the front of the metal chassis.  A muffin fan can also be mounted in the guide.   The plastic is solid stuff.  A nit-pick: I would prefer that the 1" square indentation for the manufacture's label were higher on the case so it isn't partially obscured by the keyboard.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Drive bays.  The case has six drive bays: two exposed and one hidden 3 1/2" bays and three exposed 5 1/4" bays.  The three 3 1/2" bays are in a removable cage which is secured with two screws.  This makes it a snap to install and service, all-at-once, a hard disk, Zip or LS-120 drive, and a floppy drive.  All of the exposed bays come with snap-on dust covers.   Drives are easily installed without rails.

ltblball.gif (377 bytes)  Expansion board slots.  The case has seven slots.  It will accommodate motherboards with 3 ISA, 3 PCI, one shared ISA/PCI, and one AGP expansion board connectors, or other combinations thereof.  All of the slots come equipped with removable slot covers (not those annoying knock-outs found in some cases). 

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