View Full Version : Raidmax Sirius

09-22-2008, 03:06 AM
Review: Raidmax Sirius Mid-Tower Case (http://www.raidmax.com/specs/sirius.htm)

Overall rating: 7/10


There's no doubt about it. If you want a cheap, fabulous looking case right out of the box that isn't too gaudy, the Raidmax Sirius case is a pretty good bet. If you put a great deal of weight on build quality though, this perhaps isn't the case for you. It's not TERRIBLE, but it's not fun to work with either.

Ok, when I first got this about a year and a bit ago, I LOVED the look of it right out of the box. The sleek design was perfect for a gamer girl who doesn't really have time to pull off a kickass mod and just wants to take something to a Lan party or two. Unfortunately, it is NOT the easiest box to work with despite the tool-less bays, and to be honest, the design itself is lacking a bit in functionality.........

............BUT, it IS pretty :D

Key Features:

The Raidmax Sirius is a midtower case, and is very lightweight.

The Sirius boasts an Aluminum front door with temperature gauge, HDD activity gauge, fan speed gauge, and magnetic door.

They do not mention the details. The door is indeed magnetic, but only the EXTERIOR is actually Aluminium. This means the inside of the door as well as the actual frunt panel are made of plastic, and, once I took it apart to look at it, it's actually pretty cheap plastic and the wiring is held on with a hot glue gun. The fancy metal gril on the inside of the door comes loose as soon as you unscrew the inside of the door, and it's nearly impossible to put it back the way it was unless you sit the case on its side and screw it in like that.

The case comes with 2x 120mm blue LED fans and 1x80mm blue LED fans. Note that only the 80mm fan has a 3-pin connector that allows fan speed to be altered and monitors, the 120mm fans come with standard power connectors. That being said, they're not great quality fans, but they're not bad quality either, and the blue LEDs are nice and bright, meaning during the day you get a blue glow too, and at night they light up the inside of the case very nicely without having to add extra lights.

The tribal cutouts are very nice. They are perforated metal grills, and are fine enough to allow a decent view inside the case without showing off all the dust inside and without the disadvantage of acrylic stopping airflow. The tribal designs that help with airflow are on the left and top of the case, the design on the front backs onto the plastic circuitboard, and is just for design's sake.

Other Features:
Looking inside the case, you notice the Sirius has tool-less click locks for its drive bays and slot tabs. the slot locks are good, they pop out the panels nicely, though the bay tabs are kind of difficult to fit correctly if you have a drive inside it and it could take a few tries before it clicks properly.

There are a total of 5 3.5 inch drive bays, with only 3 of them facing sideways, and these have clips only on one side. These ones are a definite pain to fit correctly, as the clip on the side clips in the whole drive, and you have to wriggle it until it fits.

in addition there are 5 5.25 inch drive bays, which can obviously be adapted to 3.5 inch bays if you have a lot of hard drives, but in total 10 bays is not bad at all for a mid tower.

Raidmax also includes the fact that there are handles on the side doors at the back that fold in as a feature, but to be honest, the aluminium doors are flimsy enough that you can't tug too hard on the handles and not bend the case.

Due to the fact that it's made of Aluminium, the case itself is very light. it gets a lot heavier once you get the guts into it, but you can be happy in the knowledge that the thing itself is very very light.

Finally, the case comes with 6 thumbscrews to hold the side panels in place, and I'm pretty happy with these. They tighten well enough even for my girly strength and I can undo them easily too.

Considerations and Issues:

Normally, i wouldn't spend a whole section on this, but unfortunately I had so many problems with this case (and to be fair especially with my retailer) that i feel it was important to note.

I had a lot of problems with the guages on the front, straight out of the box, as only one of them lit up or actually indicated a value. The instruction manual for this case when I got it was pretty much non-existant. It consisted of 1 page worth of instructional pictures which were vague at best. To be fair, I will point out that once I complained to Raidmax via email, they told me they would revise it, and they now have a much more comprehensive user manual linked from the Sirius page with text AND pictures which is miles better than what was there when I first bought it. It took a good 6 months, but it actually happened, which is very good for a large company.

After trying every way I could to get the lights working, I called my retailer (I had bought the case online at www.pccasegear.com.au), and they told me to send the front panel back. That would have been fine, except the company made me pay another $40 in shipping on top of what i'd allready paid for the case to send it back to them, despite the fact that after testing it they did establish it was indeed faulty and replaced the part. I was very dissatisfied with this service, and to be honest, I got the impression that they did not want to talk to me and considered me an incompetent user. They were very abrupt on the phone when I explained the fault, and tried to talk me through working out if i had the connectos plugged in etc, when I explained that I was an experienced user and knew my way around cases. In addition, the fact that the part was right out of the box, under warranty, and I STILL ended up with me paying out-of-pocket expenses finalised my decision never to purchase from this company again.

When I called PC Case Gear and complained at having to pay for shipping to send the part to them, they told me that it was policy and I could either send it to them or deal with it. They shipped me back a new front panel and paid for the RETURN shipping, but it took a week (even though I had to pay express delivery), and I was not very impressed.

Perhaps a minor issue in comparison, be careful what motherboard you get. My Asus Commando has its sata ports right next to the side drive bays, and it's a really tight squeeze to get the Sata cables in, and once I did some cable management, whoa boy. If you are thinking about a very large video card, forget it. It will not fit, but this is going to be true for most Mid-Tower cases.

On the front panel (not the door), over the fan, you have these 9 decorative circles. These things are a PAIN. They get very dusty, very fast and then you have 9 little rings to clean instead of just wiping it down. Unfortunately, due to all the meshing, the case gets a bit dusty. I've seen worse, but I've seen better. However, this isn't too bad compared to the benifit from the added airflow.

The other major issue I had was with the 120mm fans. They come on your regular red/black connector instead of the 3-pin connector, and I bought a multi function panel which can monitor 3 fans. So I decided to put the case fans in another PC, and i bought myself a pair of 120mm Yate Loon Blue LED case fans (http://www.mnpctech.com/LED_Computer_Fan.html) on 3pin connectors.

*On a side note, I LOVE these fans. They're about 2x quieter than the case-shipped fans, which weren't that bad, plus they lowered my temp by 5 degrees compared to the case-shipped fans. They are built like high-end fans, but only cost a few dollars. Great buy!*

Anyway. I bought my super awesome new fans, and went to take out the 120mm fans in the case, only to my horror to discover i couldn't get the front one out. That's right. There was NO WAY to get the stupid fan out. I could unscrew it (though it was a bit alkward), but when I went to take the fans out, it wouldn't slide out from in between the front panel and the side facing drive bays. In fact, the ONLY way to get this fan out, was to grab a pair of pliers and bend the guide rail for the side panel about 90 outwards and then tug really hard. Needless to say, after doing that, the side panel never fit quite right ever again (though to be fair, it still fits allright, just takes a bit of muscle to align the holes for the screws up the back). This of course i was attempting while my flatmate was watching me as he got his new case, and was laughing hysterically all over the floor. I was less than impressed.

This case has a recommended retail price of roughly $99USD on the internet. Of course that doesn't include postage, which you can expect to cost another 20-60 dollars depending on distance and speed. I DO want to point out that due to the fact that I live in Australia, I paid an outrageous $200 + $40 postage and handling, + $40 shipping to send back the faulty part (around $250 US or so). Considering the price of a decent case with tool-less design, It's a fair price considering what it can do (unless you are buying in Australia). In the end, the price is pretty decent considering the features and build quality.

Overall rating: 7/10
Ok, despite all the hassles I had with this case, I have to admit, I've had it for a year and 3 months, and I still love it. It's a nice design that you never get sick of (at least I don't), and once you get over the hickups it's a pretty cool case. It lost points for build quality, though not much due to the price of the actual case (you get what you pay for), and it also gained quite a bit of Kudos from me for the fact that the user manual was improved based on user feedback.

09-22-2008, 03:07 AM
Other notes:
If you are looking for a case you can upgrade and pull parts in and out of it all the time, this is not for you. But if you are looking for a medium sized, funky looking case out of the box, at a decent price with an ample number of bays and tool-less entry, then the Sirius isn't a bad choice.

Sorry about the double post, but my post was too long and it wouldn't let me post my whole review :(

The boy 4rm oz
09-22-2008, 04:46 AM
Very informative review. I very much like the look of those Raidmax cases, not a bad effort at a pre-modded case. I had the same osrts problem you had with the fan on my brothers NZXT Alpha. +rep for the great review

09-22-2008, 09:27 PM
edited to fix a few omitted details :)

09-22-2008, 09:55 PM
+rep, nice review mate, good to see you back, its been a while.

09-22-2008, 10:24 PM
Thanks :) You know what's funny? I DID allready write a detailed review of this case......and I forgot about it hehe. If I had more interesting hardware, I'd write something new. I've emailed Antec about their Skeleton rig, see if I can weasel a cheap/free one in exchange for a review.

09-22-2008, 10:25 PM
i've always wanted to do a review on my wildcat 2 but never found a board it would run on, and it will only work under windows 95 or NT for some strange reason.

The boy 4rm oz
09-23-2008, 04:20 AM
Yeah I thought I had a case of Dae ja voo while reading this lol. I SOOO wanna get one of those Antec Skeleton cases.

09-23-2008, 10:07 AM
awesome review, +rep

09-24-2008, 09:08 PM
Glad you like it.

In the end, it wasn't a bad idea to do another review, because i've had it for awhile now and i know more about it :)

09-25-2008, 01:11 AM
nice honest review. +rep