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[nextpage title=”Introduction”]

Corsair is going to release a new mid-tower series of computer cases, named Carbide, with two models. The 400R is scheduled to arrive on the market on 08/31/2011 at USD 100, and the 500R is scheduled to arrive on the market on 09/30/2011. They have features not usually found on mid-tower cases such as eight expansion slots. Let’s see if the 400R will be a good buy.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 1: Corsair Carbide Series 400R case

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 2: Corsair Carbide Series 400R case

The left panel of the 400R has a mesh supporting two 120 mm or 140 mm fans.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 3: Left-side panel

[nextpage title=”The Front Panel”]

The front panel of the Corsair Carbide Series 400R has four external 5.25” bays, all using meshed covers with air filters.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 4: Front panel

The buttons and connectors of the case are located on the front panel. The 400R comes with two USB 3.0 ports, one FireWire port, and the traditional audio jacks. The USB 3.0 ports use an internal connector, so you won’t need to connect them to the motherboard external USB 3.0 ports. If your motherboard doesn’t have an internal USB 3.0 connector, you can install the USB 3.0 ports to a USB 2.0 header, thanks to the adapter that comes with the product.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 5: Buttons and connectors

At the bottom part of the front panel, the 400R comes with two 120 mm sleeve bearing fans, and there is a washable air filter in front of them. These fans glow in white, and you can turn their LEDs off by pressing a button located on the top part of the front panel. See Figure 5. Unfortunately, the manufacturer doesn’t publish the technical specifications for these fans, and the original manufacturer sticker was replaced by a sticker that has only the Corsair logo. These fans are connected to a standard peripheral power connector, so you can’t monitor their speed.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 6: Front fans

[nextpage title=”The Top, Bottom, and Rear Panels”]

The top panel of the 400R can be seen in Figure 7. It has a mesh, supporting the installation of two 120 mm or 140 mm fans.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 7: Top panel

The bottom panel has a big, removable air filter, covering the meshes available for the power supply fan and for an optional fan.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 8: Bottom panel

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 9: Air filter

The rear panel and the interior of the 400R are painted black.

One of the highlights of the Corsair Carbide Series 400R is the presence of eight expansion slots. (Usually, cases have seven.) This allows you to install three or four video cards in your system, depending on your motherboard. The slot covers are vented.

There are four holes for hoses of liquid cooling solutions, all with rubber covers.

The 400R comes with a 120 mm fan installed on its rear panel, but no technical specifications for this fan are provided. This fan uses a three-pin power connector, so you must install it on your motherboard, allowing you to monitor its speed. You can replace this 120 mm with a 140 mm model, if you want.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 10: Rear panel

Let’s now take a look inside the Corsair Carbide Series 400R.[nextpage title=”Inside the Corsair Carbide Series 400R”]

Both panels are attached to the chassis using black thumbscrews. These thumbscrews stay permanently attached to the side panels, so there is no way you can lose them. The motherboard tray has a huge hole for you to access the backplate of the CPU cooler without having to remove the motherboard from the case, several holes protected with rubber covers for you to route cables behind it, and a few metallic clips for you to fasten cables using cable ties.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 11: Overall look

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 12: A view behind the motherboard tray

In Figure 13, you have another overall look inside the case. Expansion cards are fastened using black thumbscrews. The 400R supports video cards up to 12.4” (316 mm) long.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 13: Overall look

The power supply is installed at the bottom of the case. Note that it can be installed with either its bottom fan facing up or facing down, so you can decide if you want the fan of your power supply pulling air from inside the case or from outside of it.

If you in
stall a power supply up to 6.9” (175 mm) deep, you can install a 120 mm or 140 mm fan on the bottom panel. With a power supply up to 7.3” (185 mm) deep, you still can install a 120 mm fan. But if you have a power supply deeper than that, you won’t be able to install a fan on the bottom panel.

As shown before, the bottom panel has an air filter for the power supply fan and for this optional fan.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 14: Power supply compartment

[nextpage title=”The Disk Drive Bays”]

The Corsair Carbide Series 400R has four 5.25” external bays and six 3.5”/2.5” internal bays. All bays use tool-less installation mechanisms, except when you have 2.5” devices.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 15: Disk drive bays

Each 3.5”/2.5” bay is actually a small drawer, with rubber rings around its pegs to absorb vibrations and, thus, reduce noise.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R caseFigure 16: Drawer

[nextpage title=”Main Specifications”]

The main specifications for the Corsair Carbide Series 400R case include:

  • Style: Mid-tower
  • Application: ATX and smaller form factors derived from this one
  • Material: Zinc-coated steel (SECC) body
  • Power supply: Doesn’t come with the product
  • Available colors: Black
  • Side panel: Meshed
  • Dimensions: 19.8 x 8.1 x 20.5 inches (503 x 206 x 521 mm) (H x W x D)
  • Net weight: 17 lbs (7.8 kg)
  • Gross weight: 20.5 lbs (9.2 kg)
  • Bays: Four external 5.25” bays and six internal 3.5”/2.5” bays
  • Expansion slots: Eight
  • Maximum video card length: 12.4” (316 mm)
  • Maximum CPU cooler height: NA
  • Fans: Two 120 mm fans on the front panel (white LEDs with on/off switch) and one 120 mm fan on the rear panel
  • Optional fans: Two 120 mm or 140 mm fans on the top panel, two 120 mm or 140 mm fans on the left-side panel, and one 120 mm or 140 mm fan on the bottom panel
  • More Information: https://www.corsair.com
  • Average Price in the US*: USD 100.00

* Researched at Amazon.com on the day we published this review.[nextpage title=”Conclusions”]

The Corsair Carbide Series 400R is an excellent option for the user looking for a mid-tower case with eight expansion slots, support for several fans, support for six hard drives or SSD units, and good construction quality.

Strong Points

  • Meshed bay covers with air filters
  • Vented slot covers
  • Air filter for the front fans
  • Air filter for the power supply fan
  • Air filter for the optional bottom fan
  • Eight expansion slots
  • A huge hole in the motherboard tray for accessing the backplate of the CPU cooler
  • Holes for routing cables behind the motherboard tray
  • Support for six 3.5” or 2.5” internal devices

Weak Points

  • No air filter for the left-panel fans