Silverstone showcases Raven 2 at Computex

Overall Score

Whether you liked the Raven case or not, Silverstone has continued to develop this radical line of cases.  At Computex 2009 we were introduced to the orginal RV01’s successor, the Raven 2.

 [timg]rv02_angle.JPG[/timg]

With a much lower profile, we can see that the front door is gone.  The top panel has been redesigned and the flip cover which hid the front panel I/O connectors is also missing. The outside of the case still has styling inspirations similar to the RV01, but the overall look is very different.  Our first impressions of the new look were positive, however, cases are more of a personal choice.  The final decision is left up to the buyer.

 [timg]rv02_top01.JPG[/timg] [timg]rv02_top02.JPG[/timg]

Opening the back side panel, we can see a huge improvement in cable management.  In addition to the cable management, Silverstone has included space for an SSD and a hole in the motherboard tray to allow for easy removal of CPU coolers.

 [timg]rv02_back no panel.JPG[/timg]

Flipping around to the main side of the case we can see that Silverstone is sticking with the rotated motherboard.  Huge improvements have been made to the internal layout of the RV02.  On the bottom of the case you can see three 180mm fans pulling in air from underneath the case.  The two fans in the original Raven case limited the cooling potential of the rotational design Silverstone has adopted.  With the additional fan, we should see increased cooling performance.  Another interesting move is the placement of the power supply.  Silverstone has taken the bottom mounted psu from the RV01 and moved it to the back of the case and rotated it to face the same direction as the motherboard.  Moving the power supply as they did allowed the inclusion of the additional 180mm fan.  Another interesting aspect to note is that the layout is switched from one side to the other making the windowed side opposite from the RV01.

[timg]rv02_back.JPG[/timg]

The very back of the case is plain with the exception of the fan filter for the power supply.

The second addition to Silverstone’s Fortress line of cases was also on display at their booth.  As we walked around the corner opposite of the RV02 we ran into the FT02 and thought we were looking at the Raven 2 again, only in silver.  After closer examination, we could see that it was indeed the FT02.  The Raven series is designed to be exotic and different.  The Fortress sticks to traditional Silverstone case designs.  What we were looking at was the FT02 without side panels.  The internal layout is basically the same as the Raven 2.  The big difference, of course, is the exterior

[timg]ft02_front angle.JPG[/timg]

As you can see the FT02 is sleek, simple and sexy.  The new Fortress 2 is more squat and elongated than its predecessor. 

[timg]ft02_panel off.JPG[/timg]

Looking inside, you can see why we did a double take.  The only difference from the internals of the RV02 is the HDD bay.  In the Fortress 2 it is setup similar to how it is in the original Raven case.

[timg]ft02_top.JPG[/timg]

The top is sleek and very simplified.  The top cover hides the cabling in the same way as the Raven 1 and 2. 

[timg]ft02_back angle.JPG[/timg]

The back is pretty simple and uses a fan filter to keep the power supply internals clean.

 

The Raven 2 and Fortress 2 were not the only new items on display at Silverstone.   Sitting up on the power supply shelf was a new addition to the Strider Series of PSUs, a 1500W beast.  With a combined total of 8 12v rails, the new ST1500 is rated at over 80% efficiency.

[timg]1500_01.JPG[/timg] [timg]1500_02.JPG[/timg]

The 1500W Strider power supply is fully modular and sits a tad bit longer than its smaller brother, the ST1200.

[timg]ML03_black.JPG[/timg] [timg]ML03_psu.JPG[/timg]

The ML03 is a new Mini ITX case by Silverstone that uses a tiny 65W power supply that is bundled with the case.  That tiny little device with the molex and SATA connectors fits right on the motherboard and provides 65W of power for the Mini ITX system housed in the ML03.

One last interesting device that caught our eye was a 3.5" drivebay that supports a hot swappable 2.5" HDD or SSD.  It also has ports for the upcoming USB 3.0 standard due out later this year.

[timg]3.5 drivebay_01.JPG[/timg] [timg]3.5 drivebay_02.JPG[/timg] [timg]3.5 drivebay_03.JPG[/timg]

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