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The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra is a gigantic full-tower case supporting EVGA’s Classified SR-2 motherboard, which at the moment is the only motherboard in the world based on the HPTX form factor. It also supports E-ATX, XL-ATX, and smaller motherboards. This case has 10 expansion slots, 10 internal 3.5”/2.5” storage bays, one external 3.5”/2.5” docking bay, and supports the installation of two power supplies. Let’s take a good look at this unique product.
HPTX (High Performance Technology eXtended) motherboards measure 13.6” x 15” (345 x 380 mm) and E-ATX (Extended ATX) motherboards measure 12” x 13” (305 x 330 mm). XL-ATX (eXtra Large ATX) is not an official standard size: Gigabyte defines it as 12.8” x 9.6” (325 x 244 mm) while EVGA defines it as 13.5” x 10.3” (343 x 262 mm). The Blackhawk Ultra supports both.
The first thing we noticed about the Blackhawk Ultra is that it is based on the same platform as its main competitor, the Enermax Fulmo GT. In other words, both cases are manufactured by the same company in China, but they carry a different set of options. In this review, we will be discussing the differences between the two products.
The Blackhawk Ultra has a big mesh on its left-side panel, which comes with one 230 mm fan (Rosewill DF2303012SELN-GP) that glows red when turned on. It is important to understand that “230 mm” is the size of the frame of the fan on its longest side; the blades of this fan measure 190 mm. The manufacturer doesn’t state the technical specifications for this fan, which uses a standard fan three-pin connector, but you can connect it directly to your power supply using the included adapter. You can also install five 120 mm fans on this panel, or nine if the 230 mm fan is removed. All holes for screws feature rubber rings to reduce the vibration of the fans.
This configuration of the left-side panel is one of the main differences between the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra and the Enermax Fulmo GT. The case from Enermax comes with two 120 mm “VEGAS” fans with blue LEDs and has room for two optional 180 mm fans.
The reviewed case also allows you to install a 120 mm fan on its right-side panel, to cool down the underside of the CPU. This feature is also available on the Enermax Fulmo GT.
There are no air filters on the side panels.
[nextpage title=”The Front Panel”]
The front panel of the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra looks identical to the Fulmo GT’s, except that the model from Rosewill comes with a 5.25”-to-3.5” adapter installed in the bottom-most 5.25” bay. It has four external 5.25” bays, using meshed covers with air filters. The case comes with two 140 mm fans with red LEDs installed on the bottom part of the front panel, while the Fulmo GT comes with one blue 180 mm “VEGAS” fan installed. The front fans use three-pin connectors but come installed to a “power hub” where you can power them with a single standard peripheral power connector coming from the power supply. No technical specifications for these fans are provided. The front panel has an air filter for them.
[nextpage title=”The Top Panel”]
The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra comes with two 230 mm fans with red LEDs on its top panel, identical to the one that comes on the left panel. If you install a power supply on the top part of the case, you will need to remove one of these fans. If you decide to install a radiator for a liquid cooling solution on the top panel (the case supports radiators up to 420 mm), you will need to remove both fans. The top panel comes with an air filter, but it is not easy to remove as it is with the Fulmo GT. The competitor from Enermax comes with only one 230 mm fan installed on the top panel.
This case comes with two USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, and the traditional audio jacks. The USB 3.0 ports use an internal connector, so make sure you install a motherboard with two internal USB 3.0 headers. The Enermax Fulmo GT has four USB 3.0 ports and one eSATA port, but no USB 2.0 ports. The competing model from Enermax also has a switch to turn off the LEDs from the fans and a single-channel analog fan controller.
The reviewed case also has a 3.5”/2.5” docking bay on its top panel. See Figure 8.
[nextpage title=”The Bottom and Rear Panels”]
The bottom panel has a single air filter, covering the power supply fan and the optional fans that you can install on the bottom panel.
The rear panel and the interior of the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra are painted black, and are identical to the Fulmo GT’s, except that the reviewed model comes with a loop for installing a padlock or warranty
On the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra, you can install the power supply on the top part of the case or at the bottom. You can even install two power supplies at the same time. However, the product doesn’t come with the required adapter to allow this installation. (It is easy to make it; all you need to do is to get a wire and connect the green wire of the two power supplies together.) As previously mentioned, if you install a power supply on the top part of the case, you will have to either move or remove the top fan.
The case comes with a 140 mm fan installed on its rear panel (Rosewill DF1402512SELN-GP). No technical specifications for this fan are available. It uses a standard fan three-pin connector.
As already explained, this case has 10 expansion slots. Usually, cases come with seven expansion slots. All slot covers are vented.
The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra has seven holes for hoses of liquid cooling solutions, all using rubber covers. These holes are 1.1” (27 mm) in diameter.
As mentioned, this case comes with a loop for installing a padlock or warranty seal, preventing unauthorized people from opening the computer.
The case comes with a set of wheels, shown in Figure 12.
Let’s now take a look inside the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra.
[nextpage title=”Inside the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra”]
Both panels are attached to the chassis using black thumbscrews. The motherboard tray has two holes (since the EVGA Classified SR-2 motherboard supports two processors) for you to access the backplate of the CPU coolers without having to remove the motherboard from the case, several holes protected with rubber covers for you to route cables behind it, and some metallic clips for you to fasten cables using cable ties. The Blackhawk Ultra comes with the hole for accessing the second CPU closed with a rubber protection. You will need to remove this protection if you install an HPTX motherboard with two CPUs; otherwise, the second CPU may overheat.
In Figure 15, you have another overall look inside the case. Expansion cards are fastened using thumbscrews. The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra supports video cards up to 15.9” (404 mm) long, but if you remove the fans that come attached to the hard drive cage, this clearance is increased to 17” (433 mm). The case supports CPU coolers up to 7” (177 mm tall), if fans are installed on the left-panel, and up to 7.5” (190 mm tall), if these fans are removed.
The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra comes with two 140 mm fans on the side of the hard drive cage identical to the rear fan. See Figure 16. These fans use three-pin connectors but come installed to a “power hub” where you can power them with a single standard peripheral power connector coming from the power supply. On the Fulmo GT, these fans are optional and don’t come with the product.
As explained, the power supply can be installed either at the top or at the bottom of the case, and you can even install two power supplies. In both cases, 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.
The bottom power supply compartment has a Velcro strap to fasten the power supply very tightly, preventing vibration and noise.
The Blackhawk Ultra allows the installation of two 120 mm fans or two 140 mm fans, or one 230 mm fan on its bottom panel.
[nextpage title=”The Disk Drive Bays”]
The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra has four external 5.25” bays, one external 3.5” bay converted from one of the 5.25” bays, one external 3.5”/2.5” docking bay, and 10 internal 3.5”/2.5” bays. The 5.25” bays have tool-less installation mechanisms.
Each 3.5”/2.5” bay is actually a small drawer featuring rubber rings to absorb vibrations from 3.5” devices.
[nextpage title=”Main Specifications”]
The main specifications for the Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra include:
- Style: Full-tower
- Application: HPTX, XL-ATX, E-ATX, ATX, and smaller form factors
- Material: Zinc-coated steel (SECC) body
- Power supply: Doesn’t come with the product
- Available colors: Black
- Side panel: Meshed
- Dimensions: 25” x 9.4” x 26” inches (635 x 240 x 660 mm) (H x W x D)
- Net weight: 36 lbs (16.2 kg)
- Gross weight: 43 lbs (19.4 kg)
- Bays: Four external 5.25” bays, one external 3.5” bay converted from one 5.25” bay, one external 3.5”/2.5” docking bay, and 10 internal 3.5”/2.5” bays
- Expansion slots: Ten
- Maximum video card length: 15.9” (404 mm) or 17” (433 mm), if the internal 140 mm fans are removed
- Maximum CPU cooler height: 7” (177 mm tall) or 7.5” (190 mm tall) with the left fans removed
- Fans: Two 120 mm fans with red LEDs on the front panel, one 230 mm fan with red LEDs on the left panel, two 230 mm fans with red LEDs on the top panel, one 140 mm fan on the rear panel, and two 140 mm fans on the hard drive cage
- Optional fans: One 120 mm fan on the right panel, two 120 mm fans or 140 mm fans or one 230 mm fan on the bottom panel, and five or nine (if the 230 mm fan is removed) 120 mm fans on the left panel
- Extra Features: Loop for padlock or warranty seal
- More Information: https://www.rosewill.com
- Average Price in the US*: USD 220.00
* Researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.[nextpage title=”Conclusions”]
The Rosewill Blackhawk Ultra has advantages and disadvantages over its main competitor, the Enermax Fulmo GT. Both are based on the same platform and are in the same price range, but the Rosewill model has fewer USB 3.0 ports, doesn’t come with a switch for turning off the LEDs of the fans, and doesn’t come with a fan speed controller. On the other hand, it comes with eight fans installed (the Fulmo GT comes with five) and supports more fans on the left panel. Both provide a terrific cost/benefit ratio if you are building a very high-end system with three or four video cards and a big motherboard.
- Support for HPTX, XL-ATX, and E-ATX motherboards
- Air filters for the front, top, and bottom fans
- Meshed 5.25” bay covers with air filters
- Support for 18 fans, comes with eight
- Ten expansion slots
- Vented slot covers
- Support for 11 3.5”/2.5” storage devices
- Rubber rings to absorb vibration and noise from 3.5” storage devices
- Support for four long video cards up to 15.9” (404 mm) or 17” (433 mm), if the internal 140 mm fans are removed
- Expansion cards are fastened using thumbscrews
- A huge hole in the motherboard tray for accessing the backplate of the CPU coolers
- Holes protected with rubber covers for routing cables behind the motherboard tray
- Metallic clips for fastening cables using cable ties
- No air filters on the meshes on the side panels
- No fan controller
- No switch for turning off the fan LEDs
- Doesn’t come with an adapter to allow the installation of two power supplies at the same time (although this is very easy for any user to do)