NZXT Alpha Mid-Tower
Author: Zahn Funk
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 10-31-2007
Provided by: NZXT
Discuss: View Comments

The side panel comes off with two large, plastic-covered thumbscrews on the rear. The 120mm fan attached to the window is clear with blue LED's and is powered by a 4-pin pass-through style Molex connector with plenty of length to reach pretty much anywhere in the case. The inside is standard stuff, painted gray steel stamped for extra support. Riser slots have snap out blanks that are additionally held in by screws. The rear 120mm exhaust fan is a plain black standard type, also with a lengthy 4-pin pass-through Molex connector wire for power.

Front panel wiring is plenty long enough to get where it needs to go. The audio connector is the standard pinout with additional individual extensions in the event you need extra length or need to hook them up in a different configuration. As mentioned previously, absent is the connector for 1394 and in its place we have a SATA cable. Other hookups for power switch, reset and LED's round out the cable bundle. The remaining accessories are found in this box mounted in the drive cage. Often these can be found bouncing around inside the case as they have worked loose during shipping but NZXT has come up with an ingenious method of securing it - just use two of the hard drive rails and it won't go anywhere! The box contains all the remaining tool-less drive attachment plates/rails, a bag of screws and other mounting hardware, a small speaker and instruction manual.

In addition to the four external 5" and two 3" bays, there is a separate cage mounted at the bottom that can hold up to five internal 3" drives. This is turned sideways for ease of installation, and the cage can be removed from the case in order to install another fan (not included) in the front intake position. The back side of the case has several places where wiring can be hidden or routed behind the motherboard tray or drive cages.

The front panel easily snaps out with a firm tug and reveals mounting holes for either 120mm or 80mm fan. Where normally you find perforated knock-out plates left in the bays, here we see that NZXT has removed these for us ahead of time. Although it appears they did so none too gently, the edge of the frame around the opening is banged up in a few spots. They also did nothing about the sharp edges left over from removing the plates so care must be taken when installing drives in order to avoid a nasty cut or scrape. One last thing to note is that one of the LED's has worked loose from its mounting point along the edge of the front panel. These are simply hot-glued in place and I was able to stick the LED back in its place where it stayed quite firmly.

Continue on to installation.

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