Thermaltake Accused Of Stealing – New Computex Products Went Too Far

Thermaltake recently came out with a new case called the Suppressor F51 that featured noise-reduction features and a look that was very similar to the Define R5 that was was introduced by Fractal Design in December 2014. Many noticed that the case was damn near identical on the outside with some people saying that Thermaltake copied the design and others saying who cares as there isn’t that much you can do on a PC case to make it look different. No matter what your stance in on any plagiarism taking place, you have to admit that the cases look damn similar.

define-r5 supressor-f51

This isn’t the first time Thermaltake has been accused of copying. To many people, the recently released Thermaltake Riing Series was a bit too similar to the Corsair Air Series on the cooling fan side of things.

air vs riing

Another example would be the NZXT Sentry 3 Touch fan controller that came out well before the Thermaltake Commander FT Touch fan controller. The two fan controllers are oddly similar.

nzxt-tt-fan-controllers

Thermaltake’s new Pacific W2 CPU Water Block looks damn near identical to the Swiftech Apogee XL. It looks to be identical, so maybe they licensed that design or Swiftech is producing it for Thermaltake.

water-blocks

If all that wasn’t bad enough Thermaltake has announced a ton of new products at Computex 2015 and many of them appear very similar to the cases that CaseLabs produces. Here are some pictres of the CaseLabs Merlin SM8 and TH10 enclosures with their clones that were announced by Thermaltake at Computex 2015 just this week.

caselabs

caselabs-case

 

CaseLabs doesn’t appear to be too happy about this and have already issued a statement on social media about the issue at hand. We’ll just post it below as it is best if you read it.

*** REMOVED ***

It’s hard to say anything after reading that message from Kevin Keating. The bottom line here is that Thermaltake has been accused of cheating and it doesn’t look like the enthusiast community is happy with it. There also appears to be a pattern of coming up with similar products in numerous product categories that has been taking place for some time.

Many enthusiasts have pointed out that copying started a couple years back. What do you think? Has Thermaltake been ripping off other people designs for years or not? Product clones or rip offs are nothing new to the world market, but did Thermaltake cross the line or did they change the products enough to make them unique? Some people are praising Thermaltake for ripping off CaseLabs as they can’t afford the real products from CaseLabs, but can afford Thermaltake products. We don’t see this argument going away anytime soon, so Thermaltake is going to have to weather out the storm.

UPDATE 07/17/2015 6:30am CT: We received a letter from Kevin Keating over at CaseLabs asking for removal of his Facebook comment and have honored his request by removing his statement. Thermaltake has also issued a press release highlighting the fact that CaseLabs has issued a letter of retraction and an apology to Thermaltake, Inc. The letter from CaseLabs to Legit Reviews can be seen below. We’ve also removed the Thermaltake logo and a quote from a Thermaltake employee that was made in response to the CaseLabs social media comment.  It is a bit shocking to receive such a letter as we discovered the news on Reddit and we were not the first hardware site to write up a story on the subject! Thermaltake did inform us that they were contacting other sites on the matter as well.

CaseLabs Letter to Legit Reviews

 

Print
  • Drew Lawrence

    i love how they retracted Kevin’s original statement, but havent ammended the fact that the W2 was re-branded in conjunction with Swiftech.

  • Crookid

    So glad they retracted their statements so it wouldn’t cause further damage, with a letter of retraction that lists all of their statements.

    I should have been a lawyer…

  • Mike Hicks

    Only retracted accusation because caselabs is a small business. And thermfake would go to court witch caselabs agin small company. Thermaltake busted for stealing corsair sp fans swiftech cpu block and fractal design Pc cases.and nzxt fan controller. 98 percent of there stuff sucks why they steal to get 2 percent of the market.

  • SteelCrysis

    CaseLabs has retracted the accusation and apologized: http://www.thermaltake.com/content.aspx?id=6181

  • Patrick

    The comparison pics of the water blocks are what clinched it for me. Those aren’t “similar”, those are the EXACT SAME F—ING DESIGN with the only difference being the color of the highlights and the brand logo in the middle. So either one of them is licensing the design from the other, they both licensed the design from a third party, or somebody ripped somebody off. That water block design is way too non-generic for two different companies to have gotten there independently.

  • Mark Farris

    The worst part of coping is it cause stagnation from a lack of creativity and originality. Just look at the Chinese one of the oldest civilizations on earth and all they do is imitate everything even poor quality F-35B knockoffs.

  • Bansaku

    Out of all the cases I have ever bought or came into possession, only one company’s cases looked like an exact clone of everyone else’s and that is Thermaltake. In fact I often mistook Thermaltake’s cases for Antec, BitFenix and CoolMaster, yet never have I mistook anything for Thermaltake. Even their mice and keyboards along with their fans are copying Corsair. Inspired is one thing, but 95% copied…..Pathetic.

  • SpartacusKhan

    This specific argument has been going on for years re: Thermaltake. Apologies if this has already been brought up, but does anyone remember Pius Giger aka Lessdegrees’ Edelweiss case mod from 2006 (re-built 2009)? Eerily similar to TT’s LEVEL 10 (originally known as the BMW DesignWorks Thermaltake Case, shown at CeBit 2009 ). More: Google either case, and many results returned are regarding the similarity of the cases. A cursory look doesn’t show pics of the original 2006 Edelweiss case, but if I recall correctly, it was black and smoked acrylic and so the similarity was even more striking. The 2009 white version came out around the same time as the BMW DW edition that turned out to be the prototype for the TT Level 10.

  • Bob

    That’s the PC industry baby. Get over it

  • Kedde

    For a long time i have always thought that Thermaltake was a cheap alternative to Corsair and other premium brands..
    Now i get that thought confirmed. From now on, none of my friends and myself will buy anything related to Thermaltake.
    Never again.

  • WhoCaresFU

    LOL WHAT EVER!

  • ThatCaliGuy

    Asus and MSI make a X99 motherboard. Both 64GB ram and both with the same number of USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports. Both are ATX fit. So who copied who? After awhile a case can only be made so many ways before design repeats it’s self.

    • Lord Gemini

      The reason that those motherboards all have the same features is because they are all using the Intel X99 Chipset. The chipset determines the amount of features present on the board, like the amount of RAM, SATA ports, USB ports, etc. Those features never change from motherboard to motherboard using the X99 chipset. Also, the fact that they are all ATX form-factors is because ATX is an industry standard.

      No one copied anything.

      • ThatCaliGuy

        Didn’t get my point.

        • Lord Gemini

          Does it really matter?

        • conet

          Didn’t make one.

        • ThatCaliGuy

          I did, it must have been over your head though. No worries.

        • conet

          I should clarify, you tried to make one, but you didn’t know what you were talking about.

      • Thomas K.

        and they pay royalties

  • Woody Smith

    I have never thought much of Thermaltake’s products. They have always seemed to me to overtly mimic other products but provide a lower level of performance.

    This article makes clearer what I have already presumed about them.

  • Marc Molella

    I’ll just leave this here.

    • Bevan Coleman

      ‘Cept that is what Case Mod claimed… that ThermalTake had ALREADY bought it after they had first showed it as PDXLAN22.

      Might want to get off your high horse…

      • Marc Molella

        No actually that was claimed that he bought it after PDXLAN 23, May want to read again, but your lack of intelligence speaks volumes.

        • Bevan Coleman

          You mean this bit here

          “Oh and I almost forgot… Thermaltake did buy one of our cases back in September of the 2013, just 2 months after we showed off the Merlin SM8 for the first time. I guess he wasn’t kidding when he said he would just buy a case…”

          But that is ok… start insulting me…

        • Marc Molella

          Actually as the article states, he claims Shannon says, oh I’ll just buy one then, at PDXLAN 23, then Kevin states, oh yeah I almost forgot they did buy one… My point, read what you’re quoting otherwise you take it out of context just as Kevin has done with his false claims.

        • Bevan Coleman

          I had no problem understanding what Kevin meant. I think you are getting confused and thinking that Kevin is saying they bought one after PDXLAN23 but what he was saying is that they had ALREADY bought one…. at the time Kevin assumed Shannon was just being… odd and/or rude.

        • SteelCrysis

          Actually, you can’t tell the difference between the numbers 22 and 23. Says it all about you.

        • Bevan Coleman

          Kevin said that TT bough the case AFTER PDXLAN22, he didn’t claim they bought if after PDXLAN23 in any way. It’s in black and white… I don’t understand how so many can have so much trouble reading a simple sentence…

        • SteelCrysis

          Psychologically project much?

        • JayzTwoCents

          Ed Crisler (Rep for Sapphire) was present at this conversation with Kevin and confirmed that Shannon did indeed say what Kevin claims he said. There are witnesses… so get off your horse.

        • SteelCrysis

          Way to impersonate a well-known YouTuber, Kevin Keating.

        • Marc Molella

          ^^^ I didn’t realize I was on a horse. Lol

        • spoffle

          They’ve got them on the Caselabs stuff, that really does look like a shameless copy (though I have heard that they’re completely different inside) , but the Fractal stuff really is tenuous.

        • Marc Molella

          Also PDXLAN 22 was July of 2013, so as the invoice states Sept 2013, how is that two months after they shows this case?

        • Bevan Coleman

          Sept 2013 is two months after July 2013?

    • Sean Kumar Sinha

      He clearly states that Shannon bought a case from them after PDXLan 22. He hadn’t had an encounter with him until PDXLan 23, at which point Tt had already bought a case from CaseLabs.

  • spoffle

    Yeah, and that Fractal R5 is just a clone of Antec cases from almost 10 years ago.

    Also, it should be clear to anyone that Swiftech the OEM of the waterblocks, not that TT have stolen its design…

    • InternetDouchebag

      You have clearly never worked with old Antec cases, since the two are nothing alike.

      • spoffle

        You seem to be under the impression that this somehow means they don’t look alike…

        • Yuriy Man

          You seem to be under the impression that a 10 year wait, different color, and vs a brand that is halfway to death now, is even REMOTELY the same as ThermalFaking a design COMPLETELY, from a small company that is literally as we speak only getting bigger. And the design was copied within 1 year, not “10 years ago”. So please, go back to your ThermalTAKEN R&D department and wait for your Timely death. (Although, I bet that department is just rows of Copiers?)

        • spoffle

          Antec did black versions too…

          You’re missing the point, if you want to complain and criticise ThermalTake for copying the R5, then just as much criticism is due to Fractal for copying the Antec cases.

          The time period is irrelevant, it’s obvious that the Antec design was the key inspiration that Fractal used when producing the R5.

          Are you really suggesting that I work for ThermalTake? What a retarded response. I’m simply stating a fact. ThermalTake’s case looks very much like Fractal’s, which very much looks like Antec’s.

          The real issue here is that people are jumping on the bandwagon because of the Caselabs stuff. Corsair has a case that looks very much like the R5, and Antec’s cases, but people aren’t losing their minds and foaming at the mouth over that.

        • Yuriy Man

          Please re-read what you wrote multiple times until you realize you just proved everyone’s point. Let me quote you, verbatim: “design was the key inspiration” // “..which very much looks like..” // “…has a case that looks very much like the…” Do you see the pattern? Now, let me explain, very simply: There’s a difference between getting inspiration & using design elements/features (like Apple/Samsung do) but not when you blatantly copy the entire external design. I could care less about the R5, sure, it’s a replica and they copied it, but the case (pun intended) against CaseLabs? You’d have to be Dumborn the Dumbass to not see what the world sees. You can defend all you want… Are you not seeing the facts? Do you not see what LEGITIMATE tech sites, LEGITIMATE sources (for over 10+ years now) are saying? Hell, what they’re SHOWING you? Conversations, pictures, videos.. INVOICES?! I’m so done here… My IQ just dropped responding to that.

        • spoffle

          Can you point out where I defended the Caselabs issue? You’re responding to things that I never said, you utter mong.

          It’s amusing that you talk about IQ after saying something as retarded as “I could care less”. How do you not understand that it means you do care?

        • Yuriy Man

          I was referring to you defending ThermalFake as a whole, not CaseLabs. Not sure what an utter mong is, (though, I kinda want to call a buddy of mine that.. May I use it? :D) but no, I’m only responding to the obvious underlies here.. Not pointing at you for specifics. You’re just defending the fact, when.. Facts are stacked against you. Notice, I said facts.. Not “ehhh, I mean I kiiiiiiiiiiinda see how it looks like a CaseLabs” No, sir, you and I both know they’re identical. My question is WHAT are you defending, exactly? The only defense you’ve had is “but fractal did it with antec”.. Which, has absolutely ZERO to do with what’s going on here.

        • spoffle

          I’m not defending anything, I’m pointing out facts. This all started with complaints about the R5. Fractal Josh has been somewhat moaning about it, ignoring that their case is a copy itself.

          I haven’t said anything about how they haven’t copied Caselabs, they clearly have. I’m addressing the point that because of this, people are losing their minds and claiming all sorts have been copied.

          People are claiming they’ve ripped off Swiftech with their CPU block, completely ignoring that it’s very clearly an OEM design made by Swiftech for ThermalTake.

          People become blind when other people are willing to tell them what they’re seeing, which is what seems to be happening here on the whole.

        • Yuriy Man

          Ok, I tell you what. Since you love hanging your entire arsenal on “Fractal copied Antec” – PROVE it, just as the world has proven what Tfake did. If you “can’t find it” or some other BS, it’s because a) it didn’t exist or b) it is SUCH an irrelevant thing to point out, that even the internet hid it from you. So.. Go on. Show us what you’ve repeated… 5 times.

        • spoffle

          Oh lawd. As I said I mentioned it because it’s the next most talked about thing next to the Caselabs thing. What is it about that that you’re struggling to get?

        • Yuriy Man

          1) No, not only did you NOT mention that, at all, but you’re on a great path of getting Nothing right. Congrats. PS: Show me where u mentioned that even once..
          2) “Fractal Josh has been somewhat moaning about it, ignoring that their case is a copy itself.” // “You’re missing the point, if you want to complain and criticise ThermalTake for copying the R5, then just as much criticism is due to Fractal for copying the Antec cases.” // “The time period is irrelevant, it’s obvious that the Antec design was the key inspiration that Fractal used when producing the R5.” —- This has been the ground upon which you stood on. It was the Only ground you (thought) you had. Yet, you not only can’t/wont back it up, but If you wish, I’ll be more than happy to finish the grave you dug yourself.. But I feel like you did that with pure excellence yourself.

        • spoffle

          You are delusional. I’ve been posting in other areas of good article where I’ve said as much.

          There isn’t anything to back up, I don’t even think you know what your point is. I can’t say I’m surprised though, you think “I could care less” actually makes sense.

        • Yuriy Man

          You keep talking, yet hours ago you should’ve given up when I proved to everyone you’re a liar. I still don’t see a pic of your one and only argument that you thought you had – the one you mentioned 4 times. What happened to that?

          Till then…..

        • spoffle

          Oh lawd, you utterly delusional fool.

        • Yuriy Man

          Still can’t back your shit up about Fractal stealing Antec’s design? If you’d like I can invite Fractal Josh here? Oh wait…… He’s been here laughing at you trying to wiggle out of the grave you dug yourself. PS: Still no pics, not sure what else you can possibly say. If I lied 3 times, I would either admit or find a clever way to distract from it. You aren’t bright enough for either. Enough people saw your true (lying) colors. Conversation Over.

        • spoffle

          There’s nothing to back up, you utter mong. Bring him if you want, I highly doubt he’s going to get particularly involved.

          But I’m not the only one who’s saying this. Corsair’s head of case design said exactly this in the latest The Tek episode from Taipei. Go and watch the episode, he mentions how the R5 looks just like Antec’s P180.

          I also don’t think you understand what lying means. Go and look up Antec cases and see for yourself. You utter cretin.

        • chlodzenienet

          Please…The Define R5 is very original and very good case 🙂 http://chlodzenie.net/reviews/fractal-design-define-r5-cisza-z-moddingiem/

        • spoffle

          Sure it’s good, but you can clearly see the external design was based around the theme Antec’s P180 started.

        • David Lucadou

          Except…a lot of cases have a square frame. That’s where the similarities end.
          I/O ports? Nope, not even on the same side of the case.
          Modular vent covers? Nope.
          Standard fan slot on the side of the case? Nope.
          An interior that won’t cut you when building inside it? Nope.
          Completely modular drive bays (5.25″ and 3.5″)? Nope.
          Nice cable management system with SSD mounts behind the motherboard? Nope.
          The only similarity I can see is in the door cover for 5.25″ bays (which a ton of other cases have) and the vent grill for the 5.25″ bay cover (which all cases with this door require to have any ventilation at all in the front).
          The design of the case with the panels is oddly similar to the Define R4…hmm, obviously they must have ripped themselves off! (That was sarcasm, in case you didn’t notice.)
          There is a huge difference between taking inspiration and innovating (what Fractal did) and just making a clone with literally no innovation (what ThermalFake did). The first is what creates competition, where the consumers win, with a diverse market catering to every niche. The second is where knockoffs hurt the real innovators by producing the same cases cheaper, with lower R&D costs, driving out competition as nobody wants to try anything unique because they have a hard time turning a profit with all the knockoffs.

        • chlodzenienet

          Maybe you’re right 🙂

  • moy2010

    Thermaltake and others have been playing this rip-off game for years…

  • SteelCrysis

    What an unwarranted hatchet job on Thermaltake. Where were you
    self-appointed defenders of originality when Fractal Design with the Arc
    series ripped off the +1 expansion slot from Cooler Master’s HAF
    922/912, who in turn ripped it off from Silverstone’s TJ11 and SG03?
    Come to think of it, why did no one complain when any number of cases,
    including the Define XL, ripped off the 2 chamber design from Antec’s P
    Series?

    • phreeon

      Because the “rip-offs” are negligble at best. Quality and pricing will reign supreme overall, and whether which company added expansion slots first or made a two-tier cases first will be and is irrelevant.

    • InternetDouchebag

      Nice try, Thermaltake employee.

      • spoffle

        You’re retarded.

  • Eita.K

    It must be said that the RiNG fans are even from the same OEM. Which makes the AP123 as well …

  • Will Lyon

    Ermagherd they put 120mm fan mounts in their case!!! EVERYONE DOES THAT THEY COPIED THEM!! Wait you can mount your PSU two different ways??! Copy!!! They added radiator support?? OMG!!!!! 1

    • Marc Molella

      Omg! Fans are round, cases are rectangle! Copycats lol

    • Lord Gemini

      You don’t get it.

      • Will Lyon

        No you’re just jumping on the wagon with everyone else.

        • Lord Gemini

          Go look at the Caselabs vs. Thermaltake pictures more closely and see if your “expert” opinion changes.

          And no, I am not “jumping on the wagon like everyone else.” When two cases look THAT similar, something is wrong.

        • Will Lyon

          Look at the CaseLabs vs the 99 Topower case. Ermagherd CL copied them!!! Boycott CL!!

    • Easy

      Industry standard vs cloning aesthetics, not even close to being the same.

      • Will Lyon

        They’re similar, not cloned. Also they’re not the first ones to do it.

        • conet

          They’re obviously cloned if your eyes function.

        • Will Lyon

          You’re so stupid it hurts

        • conet

          Found the Thermaltake employee.

  • Zach B.

    Both of the first two cases look an awful lot like my Corsair 550D’s brushed aluminium, flat front cover… They obviously stole from Corsair!!! /s

    This is like Apple suing the competition for “stealing” the rectangle design of phones… How do you sue standardization and optimal design? Just like Apple and other companies, these guys need to be innovative and come up with something to set their products apart, or face an ever shrinking customer base from stronger competition. As Crimsunking said, vehicle manufactures do this all the time with cars, and trucks. However plane, helicopter, boat, and even vehicles for space also do the samething as advancements are made and shared in the industry, they then innovate in other ways to set their products apart, or face their company closing down and being bought out/merged.

    • Hi HO

      Your comparison is not appropriate since the Fractal Define series has been out for more than 5 years with the same front styled facia. Corsair 550d is a case specifically designed to compete with the Fractal Define series.

      • Koyomi K

        550D was corsair’s first big derp with the obsidian series. a silent optimized carbide 500R.

    • Eita.K

      Copy … How?

      • Zach B.

        Learn what /s means please… It’s used everywhere on forums/comments to indicate a sarcastic comment.

        • First time I’ve ever seen this. TIL

        • Yuriy Man

          Considering you’re the obvious donkey in this, maybe you should just learn to say /sarcasm instead of trying to be “keyboard hip”. If you have to explain what /s or something means to 25 people, maybe it’s only popular in sites you visit such as FleshlightLife.com.

        • Zach B.

          2 people is 25? Everyone else got it. But I hope your attack made you feel better about yourself!

        • Yuriy Man

          2 People not understanding it is more than those that did. 2-0 is a win, not sure how you feel about that. Recuperate and come back when you’re ready to explain to the other 23 what it means, as I’m sure they don’t know either.

    • snaX

      Its one thing if big companies steal from each other but case labs is a family owned and run business in California. I have a case labs case and I love it so Tt has lost any future funding from me

    • Koyomi K

      the hack job 550D is an external mod on the 500R and looks nothing like these. are people just blind or being willingly ignorant?

      • Zach B.

        Read, “front panel”, and learn what /s means….

        • spoffle

          It still actually looks quite similar though.

  • crimsunking

    This is so stupid! Go look at cars and trucks, mainly General Motors products, they copy what others do all the time! Not too many years back almost all cases from any company were almost identical. Caselabs should shut up since they clearly stole the SM8 and TH10 designs from the HAF stacker case. They should be happy if they have a case good enough that another company wants to base their design on!

    • Toby Kirkby

      DING DING DING, you sir are a winner for today’s “Dumbass of the day” award

      • crimsunking

        You clearly have an extremely low IQ, much lower than mine I guarantee! You call someone a dumbass but with no reasoning? Go back to blowing your uncle!

        • Eric Li

          This is highly entertaining for me 😀

        • Eita.K

          Wow. Moron.

        • crimsunking is a dumbass

          HAF Stacker released in 2013…. CaseLabs Merlin/Magnum released 2010… Maths is Hards.. .

        • Lord Gemini

          Best username ever.

        • Lord Gemini

          You clearly are an idiot if that is all you can come up with.

        • spoffle

          Wat

    • Tim Stokes

      You do realize Case Labs came up with the whole “stacker” idea 5 years before Coolermaster when they started marketing their pedestals on the M8, M10, etc.

      • John P. Myers

        Actually Mountain Mods had the stacker idea before Coolermaster and CaseLabs both.

    • Hi HO

      The Haf Stacker came out only a year and half ago. Case Labs have been around at least 4 years or more. If anything the Haf Stacker and Case Labs design are derivative of the Silver Stone TJ-07. Also Cooler Master and Case Labs made enough changes in design and aesthetics to make them both very recognizable as who is the manufacturer. Thermaltake on the other hand copied the whole look and designs features. If it did not have the Large TT Sticker in the front you would think its a refreshed Case Labs case. When I first saw the picture yesterday I thought it was a Case Labs product.

    • Easy

      You’ll find that when two car manufacturer’s have the same design that it’s licensed not stolen.