Nexus Caterpillar Case
Our friends at Nexus have sent us another fun product to review - the Caterpillar case. With Nexus stating their goal is to "stop the noise," we test their case to see if it does just that.
The Nexus Caterpillar comes packaged in a stylish box, stating the specifications of the case, as well as the model and website. Once opened, the case is wrapped in a plastic bag with styrofoam bumpers.
Features (from nexustek.nl):
Nexus has outfit the front of the case with a metal mesh for a quality and sophisticated look and also serves as ventillation. The case is strong but provides sufficient ventilation openings while still being designed to eliminate as much noise as possible. Behind the metal mesh part on the bottom-front of the case is a 120MM silent case fan positioned to get fresh air inside the case.
Wave-foam noise absorption material:
This highly efficient noise absorption foam has a wave structure as is used in recording studio's and noise-free chambers.
Two 120MM real silent case fans:
Inside the Caterpillar case you will find two 1000 RPM case fans. These case fans move a massive 36.87 CFM airflow with a very high static pressure. This means the case fans cool very efficiently at extremely low noise level.
|Case Fans:||2x 120mm Real Silent Fan (B/W)|
|Front Ports:||IEEE1394, USB 2.0 (x2), Mic and Speaker|
|HDD bays:||4 ventilated bays at the bottom of the case|
|5.25" bays:||3x front accessible|
|3.5" bays:||1x front accessible + 1x internal|
|Outer carton size:||50.6x59.8x25.7cm (HxWxD)|
The Caterpillar case has a sleek solid black finish, which is not very flashy, but does have a certain style to it. The self-closing door is very nice and quiet, but is somewhat hard to push down, and slow on the close. The front panel outputs are hidden at the top-front of the case, so much so we almost missed it. At first, we were unimpressed at the look of the case. Personally I am all about flashy cases with windows and paintjobs, and a plain black case didn't seem very nice to me. Once opened, we found that the case is all functionality and about being quiet. With the sound absorption foam located on the side panel, roof of the case, and behind the motherboard, it is a very quiet case. The two silent 120mm fans make this case a fantastic option for a quiet case.
You'll notice that this case seems upside-down. Don't mistake this for a BTX form factor case which it is not. The specifications above are correct, the case is ATX. Nexus has simply re-arranged the layout for better airflow and decreased noise. Essentially this case accomplishes what BTX set out to do without the need for an entirely new motherboard design. In this case the left side panel opens, and the motherboard mounts on the opposite panel. By doing this, the PCI brackets are mounted at the top of the case, and the power supply rests at the bottom. This also provides better air flow.
Rear of the case
Rear of the case from the inside
We were very unsure at first about this case. The plain black finish wasn't very flashy, and we're used to seeing window side panels on every case. We now realize the window panel is sacrificed for the extra sound-proof mat, which was the goal for the Caterpillar. Air flow and silence is the main goal of this case, and Nexus has clearly met these goals. If the standard consumer is not concerned about a bright case with lights, but wants a silent computer with great cooling, this is the case for them. The Nexus Caterpillar case can be purchased for approximately ~$119.00 at the time of this publication.
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