Page 4 - Installation and Conclusion
The installation process was quite pleasant and simple with a few planned hiccups. As someone who has put together and taken apart many computers, the build process was the same as any other regular case. Cooler Master included all the necessary supplies inside a small bag. As always, there was an abundance of supplies. I took out all of the necessary screws and got to work. There were not many additional cables for fans or lighting.
To not repeat any previous mistakes, I ensured all standoffs on the case were properly tightened. Afterwards, I proceeded to install my MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus motherboard alongside everything already installed onto it. The front I/O was simple enough to route to the motherboard and is long enough to be routed through the bottom of the shroud with ease. The drive bay used has a simple tool-free installation for 3.5” drives. All you have to do is clip the drive into the tray after pulling it out, then simply slide the bracket into the bay. I had already preinstalled my Patriot Viper VPN100 512GB SSD on my motherboard, so all I had to do was install my Western Digital Blue 4TB HDD into the drive bay.
As I began to install my SilverStone IceGem 280 CPU cooler, I decided to experiment and test fit radiator positions. As advertised, a 280mm radiator does not fit on the top panel due to interference with RAM. My radiator did fit on the front panel with a nice tight installation. I found there was adequate spacing to route my CPU cable through the top cutout with no hassle. Installing my FSP Hydro PTM+ 850W power supply was as simple as installing a PSU in any other case. I simply plugged in any necessary wires, then gently slid it underneath the shroud. It is important to remember to plug in all the cables prior to installation, as you will not have much room to plug them in after it is already installed. It is important to note I did struggle a little bit with getting the PSU into place. Once all my other components were installed, I began installing my MSI GeForce RTX 2060 Super Ventus graphics card. I simply removed the second and third expansion slot and tucked in my GPU. After all my components were in place, I got to work with cable management.
Admittedly, my cable management was quite poor for this build, as I felt I did not have enough space under the shroud due to the drive bay. Behind the motherboard tray, I had an adequate amount of space. My cable management does not really matter from a visual perspective as the right panel is not glass, but it is still important to try your best. The Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh provides an adequate number of tie-down points. Routing cables was easy enough using my personal Velcro straps to bunch up the cables. As previously stated, there is about 19mm of space across the majority of the case. Most builders can get by with this amount of space, but having more would be beneficial. The grommets alongside the motherboard tray made passing through cables from the back of the case to the front of the case very easy, minimizing the number of visible cables. I would be very careful when picking parts if you decide to use this case. I was able to fit a nice mid- to high-end system inside with a hard drive. I personally would recommend not having a hard drive and removing the drive bay to allow for more space underneath the shroud.
In my opinion, the Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh looks amazing. While looking quite sleek, Cooler Master was able to add a bit of uniqueness with the crystalline design. The front panel is especially nice, because it allows maximum airflow and RGB LED lights to shine through it at the same time. The design of this case is the main attraction, as this is a very different and aesthetically pleasing case. The design of the front panel serves both function and aesthetics and I really appreciate how the tempered glass side panel continues the pattern.
There are many different configurations of fans this case can handle. My personal setup consisted of the three preinstalled SickleFlow 120 ARGB fans as well as my radiator with two 140mm fans attached. All fans were connected directly to the motherboard. I adjusted the fan speed by changing my motherboard settings for testing. According to the standard APH Networks sound scale, where 0 is silence and 10 is loud, the Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh sits around 1.0/10 while idling and 4.0 at full speed. Considering how most computers will not be running at full power, these fans are quite quiet and will not be a disruption.
A lot of times, my friends will see my computer and think it is high-end from the mere appearance. Although we all know that this is not the truth, appearance plays a very vital role in what people might think a good PC looks like. Cooler Master does great in this regard as the MasterBox TD500 Mesh looks incredibly premium. The design is consistent across all visible panels and serves to create a complete appearance. I feel like I just cannot do it justice without reiterating it again, the crystalline design on the front and tempered glass side panel look absolutely incredible. The build quality was quite good as well. The build process was a little tough in regard to space, but with all this considered, is still quite decent. There are good ways to route your cables efficiently with cutouts and grommets to feed cables to the front with ease. The offset motherboard and expansion slots also aid ever so slightly in an easy motherboard installation. Furthermore, the addition of Cooler Master’s very own SickleFlow 120 ARGB fans is wonderful. As much as I love this case, there are areas of improvements that can be made. My biggest issue was the space underneath the shroud. Simply speaking, it is quite tight if you require the drive bay in your system. To further aid in cable management, creating more space behind the motherboard is another great avenue to achieve this. Finally, they should make the power supply filter at the bottom of the case sturdier with a plastic frame for easy removal. At a price of about $130 USD, the Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh is a decent option if you are looking for a good-looking case.
Cooler Master provided this product to APH Networks for the purpose of evaluation.
APH Review Focus Summary:
8/10 means Definitely a very good product with drawbacks that are not likely going to matter to the end user.
7/10 means Great product with many advantages and certain insignificant drawbacks, but should be considered before purchasing.
-- Final APH Numeric Rating is 7.2/10
Please note that the APH Numeric Rating system is based off our proprietary guidelines in the Review Focus, and should not be compared to other sites.
The Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh takes a midrange chassis and throws a premium look on it.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Installation and Conclusion