Zalman Z-Machine GT1000

Written by Joe Martin

July 26, 2007 | 12:00

Tags: #aluminium #black #case #chassis #machine #matrix #tray #window

Companies: #zalman

Outside, looking in

The front of the case is also attached using allen bolts. The advantage of the allen bolts here is that they look a lot better than a normal, black screw, but on the downside it means that there’s yet another tool to fumble about for.

The front of the case is sleek and simple, with the top 5.25” drive missing a cover deliberately on the assumption that everyone at least has a CD drive. It certainly makes sense and definitely beats having to hammer out a stubbornly fixed cover with the butt of a screwdriver (though don’t tell the PRs who send us review samples that we do that).

The case can accommodate four 5.25” drives and a single 3.5” that are accessible from the front of the case, but if you need more then you can always use an external floppy drive (if you still need one in this day and age - Ed.) as the case has the usual set of ports on the front, including headphones, USB and a microphone port.

The power button on the case is a found above the fans and is flush with the front panel of the case. It’s smooth, sleek, metallic and rattle-free and gives out a satisfying clack when pressed in, which means it passes ‘The Martin Test’ successfully. The reset button is a little smaller, but still easy to press and still looks very nice.

Zalman Z-Machine GT1000 Outside, looking in Zalman Z-Machine GT1000 Outside, looking in
Click to enlarge

The front of the case also has two fans at the bottom, masked by a recessed mesh when the case is powered off but glowing a fierce red when the PC is turned on. The fans themselves are transparent and measure 92mm, but light up thanks to four red LEDs each. There’s no way to turn the lights off as far as we could find, other than taking the butt of a screwdriver to them (again, don’t tell the PRs we did that), so the red glow is like it, lump it or mod it kind of situation.

The sleek black finish of the case is ruined ever so slightly by the silver logos which dot the case, twice on the front and twice on each side, and the fact that they aren’t just stickered means that the options for covering them up are pretty limited.

The window in the large side panel on the left hand side is made of Perspex and comes with a thin film of something protective stuck on it. Unfortunately, the stuck on film is fairly difficult to remove and we doesn’t come with an easy ‘Peel here’ tab or anything. Still, once it’s off the window gives a nice and clear view inside the case and lets owners appreciate the system within. The view practically begs to be lit up with more LEDs and neon light-tubes then a chav/rave-goer.

Zalman Z-Machine GT1000 Outside, looking in Zalman Z-Machine GT1000 Outside, looking in
Click to enlarge

There are problems with the panels however, especially the left hand side panels. The main problem is that the thumbscrews, while useful, are a bit of an eyesore and stick out a fair way of the case. The doors also clank shut quite noisily, pulled into place by magnets along the edge of the frame. A tiny bit of glued on foam would have gone a long way towards stopping the clank and it’s a shame this small tweak couldn’t have been added in – though it isn’t that hard to put on yourself.

The doors can be opened very easily thanks to a fingerhold, generously marked ‘Open’ with a big arrow pointing just where to pull, in case you’re not sure.

The case stands on four removable feet, each of which is made of metal but has a rubberised base. These feet are very sturdy and hardy things and we found it took a substantial amount of shoving in order to shift the case on any surface, even when the whole thing was empty.

Still, a case is about more than just the outside, right? Right, so let’s have a look at the rather interesting inside of the case and see just what glories it does, or doesn’t hold
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