Thermaltake The Tower 500 Review (Page 2 of 4)

Page 2 - Physical Look - Outside

You might be thinking you have seen this case here at APH Networks before. While this is not technically true, I reviewed the Thermaltake The Tower 100 Snow last year, and The Tower 500 is like an upscaled version. Taking a look at Thermaltake's lineup, this is actually the middle child of three in The Tower family, with the 900 being the largest and the 100 being the smallest. As such, many of the design elements remain the same, including its three tempered glass panels to reveal the inside and chimney-style design. The full black exterior and interior make this case feel a bit stealthy, although the same cannot be said for its size. The entire unit is made up of SPCC steel and tempered glass, with plastic on the top portion of The Tower 500. In terms of looks, I still really like this case for its extravagance and unique looks. The design is consistent with its siblings in the same product lineup. Thermaltake has also kept its branding to a minimum with one "TT" logo at the front.

Thermaltake may classify The Tower 500 as a mid-tower chassis, but it is notably larger in multiple dimensions. If you pull out a ruler, The Tower 500 measures in at 608mm in height, 388mm in width, and 398 mm in depth. This rectangular prism is quite a bit taller than any other enclosure I have reviewed and over a third of my own height, haha. You also should be aware of how much space it takes up, whether on your desk or on the floor. In terms of weight, the Thermaltake The Tower 500 is a back-breaking 14.8kg. Joking aside, this is not too surprising considering the materials used here. The build quality here is excellent with minimal panel gaps.

The front I/O of The Tower 500 can be found on the front facing edge. Starting from the middle, we have a large circular power button with a blue LED ring around it for power status. A red LED exists above the ring and it blinks to indicate drive activity. Moving outward, we have a reset button on the left side and two 3.5mm audio jacks for microphone and headphone connections. Next, we have all of the USB front ports, including four USB 3.0 ports and one USB Type-C port. While not all modern motherboards actually can support all four USB 3.0 ports, as it requires two internal headers, it is nice to see all of the connectivity options here. Otherwise, you can see at the top we have a large array of honeycomb holes. This is lined with mesh to prevent dust from landing through the top while also acting as the exhaust for this system.

At the back, we have a few interesting holes to point out. First, we have a large cabling hole at the top of the case located behind the top plastic rim. It is actually divided into two parts, as a plastic pillar exists in the middle. This allows users to pass their cables to the motherboard back I/O, as you will see on the next page. Moving down, you can see two captive thumbscrews here to hold the back panel to the frame of The Tower 500. In the middle, we have a large cutout with a black plastic mesh lining. This mesh is held with magnets to allow for more ventilation here. At the bottom of the enclosure is a large opening for a standard size ATX power supply.

On the sides, both the left and right side of the Thermaltake The Tower 500 are the same. These panels are made up of two portions. The bottom portion is the sectioned off mesh with line holes. This area is removed from the bottom, where a single thumbscrew holds it in place. Meanwhile, the tempered glass and grille combination panel up top is held on with sliding clips. This should allow some air to pass through to the inner portion of the case while also giving users a clear view of their contents. In addition, the glass-mesh panel can be flipped around to change where the mesh is. This is useful when mounting radiators inside, as you can align it with the mesh part of the panel. Once again, these panels are quite solid with their metal construction.

From this perspective, you can see how large the footprint of the Thermaltake The Tower 500 is, with its wide base. At each corner, a foot with a rubber square at the bottom prevents vibration between the case and the surface it sits on. We can see the three thumbscrews attached to the front and two sides to hold the bottom ventilation panels in place. Finally, we one plastic mesh tray that covers over the bottom of the power supply. Another ventilation area can be seen at the front of the chassis and is filtered with a magnetic mesh inside.

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