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The Aqua Blue Mid-Tower Case

With Apple's BIG introduction of the iMAC in late 1998, many computer manufacturers, especially case makers decided to expand the fashion with a classy colored new look for personal computers. Just a few months later, computer makers had the genius? idea of applying the fashion to the PC market. Apple didn't like it when a company designed a PC in the exact same shape and design as the iMAC. Meanwhile, not everyone will actually like iMAC's design. In comes Rainer inc., a pc case based company in Gardena, California. They don't just paint cases; they use high quality construction material and apply an artistic polish. They have a product line of over 25 cases with all kinds of flavors, ranging from penguins to devils. Rainer inc. supplied us last month with the Aqua Blue case, so let's take a closer look.

The Design

Features
The Case
  • Comes with ATX I/O Shield  (Back Plate)
  • Side Panel Access Toolless Case
  • Excellent Interior Quality
  • Very Easy To Install the Standard ATX Motherboard
  • Artistic Design
  • Coating Heavy Duty Steel
  • Built-in Extra Fan in the Front
  • Interference of Electromagnetic-wave Blocked
  • Hand-Cutting Free
  • Recommend For Those Seeking  Very Cool Artistic Case
  • Guaranteed For Its Quality Craftsmanship

At the first glance, the Aqua case doesn't have anything in common with iMAC's look and couldn't be compared to anything in today's market. I personally expected a standard looking case with a blue painted bottom. But I ended up being wrong. The case has an amazing good and solid look; the artistic polish is definitely a job well done.

The floppy drive isn't inserted directly from the exterior, but instead it must be inserted from the back, which is covered by the case's front floppy deck. This is mostly due to the case's exterior look not being 100% flat. It's more like a 1/3 of a sphere. I personally think that the floppy deck is a very good improvement on the design.

Another interesting feature is the plastic covers, they are extremely easy to remove and re-mount. No more metal covers and screwdrivers are required. The covers are mounted using 2 brackets on each side of the case, which makes the exterior screw-less.

The Aqua Blue weights in at a heavy 22 lbs., without the power supply. The main front panel comes with 2 buttons, a big (power up/stand by) button and a little, or should I say, tinny reset button. It also includes 2 colored LED's (red and green): the green one for the power status and the red for the hard drive status.

Extra cooling

The newer ATX 2.X specs demand proper airflow. Physics people know very well that cold air (more dense) falls and hot air (less dense) rises. The Aqua Blue makes particularly good use of this simple principle with its venting. The bottom front comes with an 80mm cooling fan, adjusted to blow out the air out of the case using the rounded hole on the front side. The fan doesn't create any extra noise, surely not

Expansions

Expansion slots these days have become somehow more important in a computer case then back in the old days. The Aqua blue doesn't cause any problems in that scene either, as it comes with a total of 7 drive bays, three external 5.25", two external 3.5" and two internal 3.5" bays. This is considered as a standard in the mid-tower market. The drives are mounted using two screws, a mounting mechanism applies a force on the right side of the drive, which replaces the need for extra screws and at the same time saves your precious building time.

The Power supply (s)

Sold with four different power options, the first is a basic solution for the basic user, a 250W ATX power supply (KME or other Generic brand). It comes with a total with 7 connectors: one main board connector, four power connectors (IDE or SCSI), and two power connectors (floppy, etc.). While not approved to work with the AMD Athlon, this may not fit the needs for some.

The second choice is another generic power supply, one with 300W output power. Basically, it's a very similar unit to the first one. This may be a better solution for users using many devices or drives and using another CPU other than the AMD Athlon.

The third choice is the 300W Fortron power supply with the smart fan feature. A true 300W continuous output, suitable for full tower, workstation or a mini-server requiring extra power. It features a total of 10 connectors: two different types of motherboard power connectors (20pins or 6pins), six power connectors (IDE or SCSI), and two power connectors (floppy, etc.) Another interesting feature is the thermally controlled cooling fan. The fan's speed varies automatically depending on the inside temperature of power supply. Depending on the temperature, the fan moves faster for maximum cooling or moves slower for less noise. At the same time it's Athlon approved by AMD. The extra-invested money is definitely worth it.

The fourth and last choice is no power supply. This may be an interesting option for people that already own a power supply or simply want to buy something of their own choice.

Conclusion

Being sold at an estimated 150$USD with the 300W Furtron power supply, this is not the cheapest price you can find for a mid-tower. On the other hand, you know exactly where that money goes. First off, all the biggest expense is the design, which makes this case unique from its competitors.

I saw many good looking colored artistic cases in the last few months, but when time comes to compare the inside construction quality, 90% of them will end up being off the mark. The Aqua Blue is built using the highest quality construction methods. The case ends up being a very interesting solution for people with money searching for a cool looking case and at the same time high quality construction.

Oleg Mitskaniouk
00/03/19






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