AZZA Genesis 9000 Case Review: Building It Every Wayby Dustin Sklavos on July 13, 2012 4:15 AM EST
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AZZA is a relatively new company when it comes to enclosures. Their major splash came with the Fusion 4000 enclosure (which we're still slated to review at some point in the future), a case that can house both a full ATX system and a secondary Mini-ITX system simultaneously. Someone over at AZZA is definitely thinking outside the box, and that becomes increasingly evident when we take a look at their most recent launch, the Genesis 9000.
The Genesis 9000 is an incredibly flexible enclosure, not in terms of building materials (which are almost entirely SECC steel) but in terms of assembly. This is a case that looks incredibly daunting to build in (partly because it's 36 pounds on its own) because of how many ways you can actually build a system in it. More than that, AZZA has gone slightly off the beaten path with the cooling system. The result is a very unique case at a remarkably competitive price, and after multiple nights of testing, we're only too happy to share our conclusions with you.
Saying AZZA is relatively new isn't wholly accurate; they're new to the end user, but they've been building enclosures and power supplies for OEMs like XION for some time now. The hardware that's been released in America under the AZZA label has been distinctive, though, and it's extremely gratifying to see newer Taiwanese companies like AZZA and Bitfenix carving out their own niches with designs that go beyond the basic "gamer" boxes. The Genesis 9000 is one of those designs.
|AZZA Genesis 9000 Specifications|
|Motherboard Form Factor||Mini-ITX, Micro ATX, ATX, E-ATX, XL-ATX|
|Drive Bays||External||9x 5.25”|
|Internal||5x 2.5"/3.5" (drive sleds housed inside 5.25" bays)|
|Rear||1x 120mm exhaust fan|
|Top||2x 230mm exhaust fans|
|Side||2x 120mm intake fans and 1x200mm fan mount, 2x 120mm fan mounts on opposite panel|
|Bottom||2x 140mm intake fans with space for up to 3x230mm fans|
|I/O Port||2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, eSATA, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic|
|Power Supply Size||Standard ATX|
|PSU||2x 240 mm|
|GPU||15.7" / 400mm|
25.1" x 9.8" x 23.2"
640mm x 250mm x 590mm
|Weight||36 lbs / 16.33kg|
USB 3.0 connectivity via internal headers
Removable, rotatable motherboard tray
Dual power supply bays
Integrated fan/LED controller
Support for 480mm radiator in top of enclosure and 240mm radiator in bottom
Honestly, for $169 you get a hell of a lot of case. The Genesis 9000 sports a healthy number of ports in the I/O cluster, nine expansion slots, and uses its array of 5.25" bays as a means for supporting 3.5" and 2.5" drives. The drive trays feel like a bit of wasted space, but they're made of solid steel and two of them even have hot-swap backplates that also include 3-pin fan headers. In a pinch you can easily buy an aftermarket 5.25"-to-2x2.5" adaptor as well.
That's before you get to the pair of power supply bays, army of internal fans, LED enclosure lighting, and fan controller. And a removable motherboard tray! There's a lot to dig into here, so let's get started.
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Ilias78 - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkGreat review Justin and the case looks like an incredibly interesting piece of work - mostly due for its customization capabilities. Much like the Silverstone FT02, Id love to get my hands on one of these and spend hours on making a perfectly assembled system (its also a challenge to do builds on such unusual cases and i like it). I still do believe however that your cable management needs more attention. I suspect that you usually must be on a deadline to build the system and write your review (which means that you dont have the luxury of time on your side), but i would really-really like to see you doing better cable management. You assembled the system ofc and you know better, but i look at the case and i see so many options and possibilities for cable routing, or ways to make things cleaner :) But still, great revew... its one of those cases that make your "creativity juices" go sky-high :)
blackmagnum - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkIt looks like a storm trooper and a Camaro has mated. Though it seems easy to clean the smooth exterior.
MakingMonkeys - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkThank you for the review,
The price link is attached to a wrong item on newegg.
mentatstrategy - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkand Tron themed devices - including the price! (Super high for a case in my opinion sheesh)
sudz - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkGreat review, Except I have one overall gripe with how you do mid and full size case reviews.
I can't speak for everyone, but When I'm building a machine that needs a medium or large sized case, I have more than just an SSD, MicroATX and one video card.
I understand the need for uniformity across all your reviews/test beds, however using the case in a way that the majority of users in a real life situation would be much more informative.
For example, my "gaming" machine is a Mid sized tower, with 5 hard drives, 2 optical drives, and two 6850's in crossfire.
The setup you have could be fit into a small HTPC (minus the video card) Who in their right mind would waste 200+ (160 in this "case") to put micro atx motherboard and a single hard drive into a full size tower?
Heat, Airflow, noise would all change when loaded up with an "average" full size setup, Including installation, cable routing, etc.
Just a thought!
AeroJoe - Monday, July 16, 2012 - linkI'm with sudz on this one. I would want to see something more in line with a case full of motherboard, graphics cards and hard-drives. After all, that's why one would need a case this big.
So let's see it with a liquid cooled core-7 processor with a closed-loop radiator in the top of the chassis, and at least four 3.5-inch hard-drives installed with the OS running on a 2.5-inch SSD. Then I would have a MUCH better idea as to whether this case deserves consideration for my next build project.
Nomanor - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - linkGreat point.
When reviewing Full Tower cases, stuff them with proper components.
Arbie - Friday, July 13, 2012 - link
We know that, all other things being equal, a larger fan will move more air with less noise. So I would like to have 230mm fans everywhere. The problem comes when you're actually trying to select and buy them. There is practically no choice. All ideas of working with RPM ranges and PWM control go out the window. And you may find that only sleeve bearings are available. Those are completely unsuited to horizontal mounting (as at the top of this case) where they will fail early.
I've learned the hard way to prefer plain old 120mm or at most 140mm fan ports. I'd like it to be otherwise, and tried to go there, but the industry is nowhere near ready. There just isn't enough demand, and I don't see that changing soon.
P5-133XL - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkI'm annoyed, the review gives temps for SSD's and doesn't use HD's. SSD's don't generate much heat and are quite heat insensitive. HD's on the other hand generate significant amount of heat and are sensitive to heat especially if there aren't fan's in front of them.
I've had significant issues with cases where placing HD's next to each other have caused HD's to get excessively hot and I've needed to either get fans that generate noise or spread the HD's apart so that they are not next to each other.
With no HD temps in the review, means I skip this case in my next build...
Belard - Friday, July 13, 2012 - linkI second that. I think future reviews for gamer/power user cases should reflect more reality... One SSD and two 2TB Hard Drives. Both of my desktops have two HDs, my main has an SSD.
While the 3.5 Drive bays may seem a bit of a waste being in 5" drive sleds, it gives them plenty of air-space. In todays world, I think even having TWO optical drives is rare. In the past 10 years, I've only built 2 computers for others who requested 2 drives.
In the OLD days of PCs, the 3.5" drive bays were SNUG against each other. I noticed this problem back in 2002 when I opened my side panel of my HUGE Antec case (God it was loud) and notice the HEAT from the 3 HDs that were attached side by side. The AIR gap between the drives was slightly bigger than a quarter and the sides were solid. (These were drive cages).
The drives were too hot to touch for more than a few seconds. I moved 2 drives to an adapter and stuck in a 5.25 bay (each), and left the 3rd in the middle 3.5 cage.
Since then, my PC cases require having an air-vent in front of the HD bays and a good amount of space (top and bottom) for each drive.
In the 90s with typical 4-drive setups (FD/HD/CD & CDR), this wasn't an issue with SLOW tech.