Thermaltake Core X2 mATX Cube Chassis
One key that many people look for in a PC chassis is flexibility. Today Legit Reviews has the opportunity to a case from Thermaltake, the Core X2. The Thermaltake Core X2 is one of their Cube chassis and is designed for a mATX or smaller motherboard. The Thermaltake Core X2 is available for as little as $100.99 at Amazon with free shipping
, or at Newegg for $104.99 shipped after a $15.00 rebate
The Thermaltake Core X2 mATX Cube chassis is, at first glance a really slick looking chassis. Once we start digging into the Core X2 it will begin to reveal just how modular and truly customizable that the Core X2 is. The Thermaltake Core X2 is design in a way that it is stackable and able to work together as one massive system with a hell of a water cooling system, or multiple systems working together.
Beyond the ability to stack the Thermaltake Core X2, the Core X2 is almost entirely modular. Aside from the actual frame of the Core X2, the entire unit is nearly entirely modular. Just about every piece of the Core X2 chassis can be removed to make room, or adjust the Core X2 to fit the system going into it.
This is a picture from Thermaltake of everything stripped out of the Core X2. Once everything is stripped out the chassis is nothing more than a cube. From this point everything that will be needed for the build can be put back in, what isn't needed can be left out! This will allow the system to be quite flexible for the end user, and will make working inside the chassis a breeze with all that room.
The amount of fans that the Thermaltake Core X2 mATX chassis can support is pretty darn staggering. If all of the available fan space were utilized using 120mm fans, the Core X2 would have a grand total of 22 120mm fans installed. The only location that wont accept a larger fan than 120mm is the sides and the bottom, those are limited to 120mm by design. The front and top can each support a pair of 140mm fans and at least one 200mm fan. The front is limited to a single 200mm fan while the top can support a pair of them.
The only thing more astonishing than the number of fans that the Thermaltake Core X2 can support, is the number of Radiators! Looking at the diagram above, the options are near limitless. The Thermaltake Core X2 can support up to six different radiators. While that may be a touch of overkill (is there such a thing?), it does give the Thermaltake Core X2 the ability to run nearly any combination that can be dreamed up! If you're running a single Thermaltake Core X2 chassis, the front of the Core X2 is limited to a radiator that is only 360mm long. Though if you plan to run a pair of TT Core X2's stacked, the Thermaltake Core X2's will support up to a 540mm long radiator installed into the front of the units!
Thermaltake Core X2 Cube Chassis Specifications:
||M-ATX Cube Case
||465 x 320 x 541 mm
(18.3 x 12.6 x 21.3 inch)
||11.6 kg / 25.6 lb
||Exterior & Interior : Black
||Front (intake) : 120 x 120 x 25 mm Turbo fan (1000rpm, 16dBA)
Rear (exhaust) : 120 x 120 x 25 mm Turbo fan (1000rpm, 16dBA)
||-Accessible : 3 x 5.25’’
-Hidden : 4 x 3.5’’ or 2.5’’ (HDD Cage) and 3 x 2.5’’ (HDD Tray)
||6.7” x 6.7” (Mini ITX), 9.6” x 9.6” (Micro ATX)
||USB 3.0 x 2, HD Audio x 1
||Standard PS2 PSU (optional)
||Supports 1/2”、3/8”、1/4” water tube
||Front: 3 x 120mm, 2 x 140mm, 1 x 200mm
Top: 6 x 120mm, 2 x 140mm, 2 x 200mm
Rear: 1 x 120mm or 1 x 140mm
Bottom: 2 x 120mm
Left / Right Side: 3 x 120mm
||Front:, 1 x 120mm or 1 x 240mm or 1 x 360mm or 1 x 140mm or 1 x 280mm
Top: 2 x 120mm or 2 x 240mm or 2 x 360mm or 1 x 140mm or 1 x 280mm
Rear: 1 x 120mm or or 1 x 140mm
Bottom: 1 x 120mm or 1 x 240mm
Left / Right Side: 1 x 120mm or 1 x 240mm or 1 x 360mm
||CPU cooler height limitation: 230mm
VGA length limitation: 330mm(with ODD Cage) or 480mm(without ODD Cage)
PSU length limitation: 220mm (With Bottom Fan)
Let's take a tour of the Core X2 PC Case!
Thermaltake Core X2 Cube Chassis Exterior
The Thermaltake Core X2 chassis is a pretty slick looking chassis overall. Although it is meant for a mATX motherboard, the Core X2 isn't lacking in size. The outside dimensions of the Core X2 are an impressive 18.3 x 12.6 x 21.3 inches, once we move to the inside of the TT Core X2 there should be plenty of space for us to work with.
The front of the Thermaltake Core X2 is fully ventilated to keep the system cool during those long hours of gaming. The X2 will support up to three 5.25" devices, whether it's an optical drive, card reader, or fan controller. All three of the drive bays can be sacrificed to add in additional fans, or a larger radiator. We'll get back to that once we move to the inside of the Core X2.
The front I/O panel on the Thermaltake Core X2 is pretty much what I would expect and features the usual suspects. Top and bottom of the I/O panel feature the power and reset buttons, tucked between the buttons is a pair of SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports, and the ever important headphone and microphone jacks. Just above the power button there is a pair of LED's, one is for power and the other is the HDD activity light. Depending on the orientation of the Core X2 on the desk, there may be an issue with the side placement of the front I/O panel. Thermaltake has designed the Core X2 so that the front I/O can be moved to either side of the chassis.
The Thermaltake Core X2 side panel is one big window! Looking through the side panel will reveal everything about your system. Which is great when you want to show off your system to everybody. Depending on the orientation of the Thermaltake Core X2 on your desk, the window may end up on the wrong side. Thermaltake has taken that into consideration and has make the side panels interchangeable, meaning you can put this one on the back side, on that one on this side!
This particular side panel of the Thermaltake Core X2 isnt quite as see through as the window, but it does have plenty ventilation through it to keep the airflow going.
The back of the Thermaltake Core X2 cube chassis has a couple rather important features going on here. Towards the top of the chassis on the left hand side, the exhaust fan port is capable of supporting either a 120mm fan or a 140mm fan. The Core X2 does come with a 120mm fan installed, it's a 120 x 120 x 25 mm Turbo fan rated for 1000rpm at only 16dBA. To the right of the exhaust fan, there is a water line pass through which is large enough for up to 1/2" diameter lines. Below the hole for the water lines is the five tooless (though I like to lock the thumb screws down with a screwdriver) expansion slots. To the left of the expansion slots is the I/O panel and below there is the cutout for the power supply. There are a handful of random thumb screws, these are used to remove the internal parts of the Thermaltake Core X2, which will be shown on the next page.
The top of the Thermaltake Core X2 is capable of supporting a variety of fans and/or radiators, this makes it necessary to have plenty of ventilation on the top panel as seen above.
The bottom side of the Thermaltake Core X2 chassis features plenty of ventilation as well. The bulk of the venting down here has dust screens to prevent to much from coming into the Core X2. The TT Core X2 has four rubber feet to prevent the system from moving around or marring up the surface of the desk.
As nice as the outside of the Core X2 Cube Chassis is, lets move on to the inside and see what it has to offer!
Thermaltake Core X2 Cube Chassis Internal Design
As I suspected on the previous page while looking at the outside of the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis, there's no shortage of room to work inside of it. The first impression I had for the design of the interior is that it looks like the layout will work out well (wouldn't expect anything less from the guys at TT though).
Taking a look towards the five expansion slots, there isn't much different here than we saw from the outside of the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis. The fan that's being used for the system exhaust, is a Thermaltake 120mm Turbo fan that is rated for 1000RPM at only 16dBA. I do like that there is plenty of room above and below the fan that there is plenty of room for a radiator. The TT Core X2 can support either a 120mm radiator or a 140mm radiator.
The three 5.25" drive bays at the front of the Thermaltake Core X2 are attached to the front of the case. That makes it a little bit easier to work around, and even remove since there isn't a cage attached to the top and bottom. Beneath the 5.25" drive bays, the Thermaltake Core X2 is equipped with an intake fan that is rated for 1000RPM at only 16dBA, the same TT Turbo fan we saw at the back of the chassis.
Looking towards the opposite side of the chassis, there is a set of three 2.5" drive mounts to use for your drives. Each of them can be removed to make mounting the drive easier.
Thermaltake is great at utilizing what could otherwise be dead space. Tucked between the motherboard tray and the power supply, there is a pair of 3.5" HDD drive bays.
There is a second hard drive cage that is tucked behind the radiator bracket. Once that has been removed there's a clear shot of it. The Thermaltake Core X2 can support up to four 3.5" hard drives with the supplied cages. As well as the three 2.5" HDD/SSD drive trays seen above.
Pulling the front of the Thermaltake Core X2 Chassis off, it reveals the three 5.25" drive bays, each is removable independently allowing for the most customization. Below the drive bays, the TT Core X2 will support either 120mm fans or 140mm fans. If you're running a water cooling loop, the Core X2 will support up to a triple radiator up front. You will need to remove all of the drive bays to fit that though.
Just about everything can be removed out of the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis. I'm a fan of the removable motherboard tray, it will make it a breeze to install the motherboard on the build section of the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis review on the next page!
Thermaltake Core X2 mATX Cube Chassis Build
Despite the Thermaltake Core X2 having more than enough room to work in, it was nice being able to remove the motherboard tray to mount it. I installed the necessary stand offs on to the tray, and the mother board fit on to the tray without any alignment issues.
Having the motherboard installed onto the Core X2 motherboard tray before installing the tray back into the Core X2 did have me a little bit worried. I wasn't sure if the I/O panel of my GIGABYTE board would line up perfectly with the I/O shield, I'm happy to report that the tray with the motherboard installed, fit perfectly!
Routing the cables from the front of the Thermaltake Core X2 to the GIGABYTE motherboard was a breeze, there is more than enough cable to make it back there.
Tossing in the Corsair HX750 power supply makes the system look like a bit of a rats nest, but cable routing wasn't an issue.
With nothing more than a handful of zipties, I was able to clean up the cabling pretty well.
Spinning the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis around, the bundled up wires become apparent.
The panel on the side of the Thermaltake Core X2 is designed to fit up to a 360mm x 120mm radiator, I mounted up one of my old radiators without an issue. I really would have liked to see this case years ago when I was building custom loops, this would have been great!
Spinning the radiator mount around, the three fans are neatly tucked into location. Along the bottom of the radiator mount, there is a channel for the fan wires, this really helps to keep a very clean look.
Once the radiator is mounted, the mount locks into place with a pair of thumb screws at the top, and a couple of slide locks along the bottom.
If you are running a pair (or more) of Thermaltake Core X2 chassis in a stacked configuration you can swing the radiator mount to the other side. This won't work if you're only running a single Core X2 as this location blocks the power supply.
Final Thoughts & Conclusion
The Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis certainly isn't a case that's lacking, well anything that I can think of, especially size! The Thermaltake Core X2 is a pretty big case, especially since it only supports up to a mATX motherboard. Though if you're looking for this style of chassis for a full ATX motherboard Thermaltake does have the big boy Core X9 which supports the E-ATX form factor, but that's a story for another day. The TT Core X2 comes in measuring at an impressive 18.3 x 12.6 x 21.3 inches. The Thermaltake Core X2, despite everything it has to offer carries a street price of only $100.99 at Amazon with free shipping
While I'm not surprised in the least, the build quality of the Thermaltake Core X2 was great. Assembling and disassembling the TT Core X2 was a breeze, though all of the thumb screws were a touch tighter than could be undone without using a phillips head screw driver. Once I loosened the thumb screws it all came apart with ease. To often are parts just a little tighter fitting than I would like to see, today I never had any issues with the parts fitting/not fitting, everything went together great and lined up great.
The flexibility of the Thermaltake Core X2 Cube chassis is really what is selling me on it. The TT Core X2 is versitile enough that you can run an insane number of fans, as many as 22 120mm fans, or as many as six radiators of varying sizes!
In addition to the flexibility of a single Thermaltake Core X2, you can add a second unit into the mix as a stacked system to increase the flexibility and capability of the TT Core X2!
The Thermaltake Core X2 Cube mATX chassis currently has a street price of only $100.99 at Amazon with free shipping
. If you're in the market for a mATX chassis that can handle and insane amount of cooling options, I doubt you'll find anything better for the price. Thermaltake backs their Chassis up with a three year parts and labor warranty. If you want details on the warranty on Thermaltakes Chassis or any of their other products, you can find that information here
Legit Bottom Line: The Thermaltake Core X2 is a really slick looking and flexible case. If you're looking to pick up a versatile mATX chassis, the Thermaltake Core X2 cube chassis is a great choice.