In Win 303 Review (Page 2 of 4)

Page 2 - Physical Look - Outside

In the review of In Win 805, Jonathan referred to the product as “designed by someone with a ruler”. It makes a lot of sense, because the In Win 805 has no round lines at all. This design principle does also apply to the In Win 303. Overall, the case is a virtually perfect cuboid. The whole case is made out of steel and glass. More specifically, except for one panel that is made out of tempered glass, the rest of the case, including the front panel, is made out of pure steel. The only exceptions are the two pieces of plastic stands, and maybe some of the clips and switches. It is like those cars designed in 1960’s: All steel, including the bumper covers that are made out of steel with chrome. There is no opening on the front panel for the external 5.25" drives, which means internal CD/DVD drives cannot be installed. Well, if you happen to have an angle grinder, you may cut yourself a hole for an optical drive, but I will say that it is pretty hard to cut through 1.2mm thick steel.

The power and reset switches, In Win logo, USB ports, and audio jacks are vertically lined up on the top right side of the front panel. The background color of the logo is blue, and the USB ports also have some touch of blue. They can all be illuminated by a backlight, and the color option of the backlight is the same on both the black and white editions of this case. From the above photo, you can see the top and front panels are made out of one piece of solid sheet metal with a matte black finish. There is no doubt about the toughness of the In Win 303. If there is an IIHS crash test for computer case, I believe the In Win 303 will be rated as “superior”, haha.

The left side panel of the In Win 303 is made out of 3mm tempered glass. The glass is tinted black, so it matches to the rest of the case in appearance. I find the glass is pretty high quality, and there is no distortion I can observe. At the bottom of the glass panel, there is a plastic wrap with clips that hold the panel in position. To remove the glass panel, you just need to push the lock mechanism on the top, where you will also find an In Win company logo. I fouled both the bottom and top plastic wraps of the glass panel are made out of very high quality plastic. Yes, it looks to me they can last forever.

As you can also see from the above picture, the top panel is one pure piece of metal, which is good news for customers if they like to put things on top of their computers. For this case, you do not need to worry about the structural integrity. I fully trust toughness of the 1.2mm sheet metal construction. By the way, I can confidently say this case can handle some weight. If the next time I could not find a chair, I will just sit on my In Win 303, haha -- just joking. By the way, since the top panel is a solid sheet of metal, there is no ventilation openings in it. To expel hot air from the case, there is a large hexagonal grille on the right side panel. This design and layout can prevent dust from getting into your computer when it is off, because dust is more likely to settle on the top of an object due to the gravity.

The power switch and reset button, backlit In Win logo, two USB 2.0 ports, audio jacks for headphone and microphone, and two USB 3.0 ports are vertically lined up, respectively, on the top right portion of the front panel. Note the above photo was taken by putting the chassis horizontally on the ground. This is an unusual design for me, since most of the time, the ports and switches are horizontally located either at the top panel or at the top portion of the front panel. Laying the USB ports in this way may cause inconvenience when users want to use the USB 3.0 ports in some situations. To have the USB ports laid out like this, if the computer is located on the ground instead of on the desk, the USB 3.0 ports are little bit too far to reach, unless you have a very long arm. It would be a better design to put all the ports on top of the front panel to increase the ports' accessibility.

The back panel shares the same features as the rest of the case; simple and clean. There are four major sections at the back of the In Win 303; namely, the power supply mounting place, motherboard I/O backplate, rear exhaust, and expansion card slots. According to the shape of the power supply mounting place, it can be seen the power supply will be vertically mounted at the top section of the chassis. This is a rather unorthodox design in 2016, whether it is the placement or orientation of the PSU. Since the power supply has already taken the top position inside of the case, the motherboard can only be located under it. There are seven expansion slots available on the In Win 303, which is a standard design for an ATX mid-tower. As for the rear exhaust, as you can see from the photo above, there is no 120mm fan included form the factory. The advantage is people can just install their closed-loop radiator or high performance fan directly without removing anything, which is great. The downside is, of course, you do not have a fan from the factory.

There are two plastic stands on the bottom of the case to support the heavy In Win 303, and to rise the case up about 2cm on top of the resting surface for better ventilation. These stands are extremely strong. Four rubber bricks are provided to enhance the grip of the stands. These rubber bricks can offer enough friction to hold the case in position firmly, even though they are not big in size. You can also see from the above photo a giant washable filter is attached to the bottom grille of the chassis. The filter is reinforced by a hard plastic structure, and they are removable for cleaning as well. Note the power supply of this case is not bottom mounted, therefore the honeycomb ventilation area behind the filter is big enough to cover almost the entire bottom panel, such that the airflow from the bottom of the case is maximized. User can also put up to three 120mm fans on top of the bottom grille to help pump cool air into the chassis.

Overall speaking, the In Win 303 is one tough computer case that is made out of thick sheet metal and tempered glass. It is sturdily built, but it is not rough. The gaps between panels are small and even, which shows high level of assembly quality. The tempered glass also exhibits quality attributes in terms of distortion, or lack thereof. Everything on this case matches its price tag of $96 USD, and demonstrate the quality of something labeled “Made in Taiwan”. There is only one suggestion I can make to improve the exterior of the In Win 303, which is to provide rounded corners. I have to say that crashing your knees on the corner of this heavy and sturdy built computer case is not a very enjoyable experience, especially if you happen to have shorts on. (Editor's Note: APH Networks does not cover computer-related injuries under employee insurance. If we had any insurance, that is.)

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Installation and Conclusion