The HAF X is the tallest and deepest HAF yet, eclipsing both the HAF 922 and HAF 932, rising to 55cm and stretching back to 59cm, making it one of the largest cases we've tested. With the HAF 922 proving to be a vast improvement over the previous model, the HAF 932, we were keen to see if Cooler Master had yet again raised the stakes.
The HAF 922 included a rear 120mm fan and 200mm roof and front fans, but the HAF X has some notable improvements. In addition to a 200mm roof fan, there's a large 140mm rear exhaust fan, a 200mm side intake fan mounted in a large side window and a 230mm front intake fan too, with both intake fans sporting dust filters. Despite being a somewhat typical high-airflow case, the HAF X is far more attractive than the Antec Dark Fleet we looked at recently.
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The HAF X is a heavy case too. Thanks to its mostly steel construction, you need to lift 16kg of case out of the box when the deliveryman arrives. However, at least this means that the HAF X is a sturdy case and includes a set of wheels, which should make moving it around a bit easier, especially when you've installed your hardware inside.
We weren't too keen on the vast array of plastic ducting inside though. A large shroud surrounds the PSU, while another a large duct directs cool air from the intake fan over the graphics card. The latter also has a mount for a 120mm fan, further increasing airflow. There's also a bracket for mounting an 80mm fan to blow even more air over your graphics card.
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While each of these features is of some use (the support bracket will be useful when transporting your system), for everyday use, they just make the case look cluttered. The PSU shroud is particularly questionable given the superb cable routeing the motherboard tray offers. Installing hardware in the HAF X is an easy task, with five tool-less 3.5in bays (one of these has a 2.5in mount for SSDs) and four tool-less 5.25in bays.
Beneath these are two further 5.25in bays, which have adaptors for hot-swappable 3.5in or 2.5in drives. As there's such a huge distance for the 8-pin EPS12V cable to travel from the PSU to the motherboard, Cooler Master has thankfully had the foresight to include an extension cable. Other than this, the HAF X is an incredibly easy case to work with. As far as connections are concerned, the HAF X has two USB 3 ports, two USB 2 ports plus FireWire, eSATA, microphone and headphone jacks.
The 230mm intake fan has red LEDs, but these can be turned off via a switch on the top of the case next to the power and reset buttons. These buttons can be covered using a sliding plate to prevent accidental use. There's no fan controller but thankfully, even with all fans powered on, the HAF X remains fairly quiet. There's also room for a triple 120mm-fan radiator in the roof and plenty of room elsewhere for pumps and reservoirs. Strangely, there are three rubber grommets at the rear of the HAF X which are usually for routeing tubing. We initially assumed Cooler Master must have thought that three is better than two, but it's been pointed out that the third is of course to route the USB 3 cable from the front panel to the I/O panel as no motherboard currently has USB 3 headers.
Dimensions (mm) 230 x 590 x 550 mm (W x D x H)
Front Panel Power and reset switches, 2 x USB 3, 2 x USB 2, 2 x FireWire, 1 x eSATA, Stereo, Mic
Drive Bays 6 x external 5.25in drive bays, 5 x internal 3.5in drive bays, 2 internal 2.5in drive bays
Form factor(s) E-ATX, ATX, micro-ATX
Cooling 1 x 120mm air duct fan mount (fan not included), 1 x 80mm bracket fan mount (fan not included), 1 x 230mm front fan mount (fan included), 1 x rear 140mm fan mount (fan included), 2 x 200mm roof fan mounts (1 fan included), 1 x 200mm side fan mount (fan included)
CPU cooler clearance 190mm
Graphics card dimensions supported 342mm long, dual slot, full height