There is a big market out there for PC products that are unique, that have that certain X-factor that really makes them stand out. This is especially true in the gaming market, where custom rigs and flamboyant chassis design often prove popular with those building their own gaming system, there is often a desire to have something awesome next to your desk that you would want to show off to your friends. Aerocool have already produced some pretty epic chassis designs over the last few years, just look at the X-Predator, the BX500 and the Dead Silence Cube, they obviously know how to make a great product that can stand-out, question is, can the do it again?
The GT-S White Edition has been designed to look like a blend of PC case and sports car, maybe even a little bit of Transformer thrown in their for good measure. There is a black edition of the case available, but Aerocool were kind enough to send us the white edition, of course specifications remain the same between each colour choice.
As you can see from the specifications below, the GT-S is a very capable chassis, it has room for a wide range of motherboards all the way up to XL-ATX, which you’ll need if you’re wanting to take full advantage of the 10 expansion slots, making this a tempting choice for quad-GPU configurations. Those looking for plenty of storage will not be disappointed either thanks to a large set of 5.25″, 3.5″ and 2.5″ drive bays.
The packaging is really nicely designed and gives us three clear photos of the chassis design with a sports car inspired theme.
Around the back of the box you’ll find a run down of the major features and selling points of the GT-S, these include support for multiple long GPU’s, tall CPU coolers, heavy-duty design, tool free hard drive bays and pre-installed fans.
In the box you will find a user’s manual that will guide you through the installation process and features of the chassis, and you’ll also find a USB 3.0 to 2.0 adaptor, screws / bolts, cable ties and a 5.25″ front panel adaptor.
Tucked in the side of the packaging was also this white front panel, this goes on the front of the case and we’ll take a look at what that looks like in our build section.
It is very easy to install and uses five strong magnets to hold it in place.
The left side panel is held in place by a pair of thumb screws at the back and features a huge side panel window that will give a clear view of the PSU, motherboard and expansion cards, while hiding most of the view of the PSU cables, hard drive bays and other components.
The right side panel is just a plain white panel and is also held in place by a pair of thumb screws.
The front panel has a very aggressive design, lots of strong angles and sweeping curves. A high contrast mixture of black and white looks great with the blue accents of the five 5.25″ drive bay covers and you’ll see shortly that there are also some blue LED’s on this panel and in the fan behind the lower air intake.
The top panel features a small cut-out at the back to allow you to easily remove it, below that you’ll find four rubber grommeted routing holes, a 140mm / 120mm fan mount, 10 x expansion bays and a bottom mounted PSU cut-out.
Along the top panel you’ll find plenty of ventilation in the form of six funky looking cut-outs, each accented with blue trim.
The front I/O panel is split into three sections, on the left you have Speed+ and Speed- for the internal fan controller, on the right you have two large LED indicators as well as the power and reset buttons, while finally you have two USB 3.0 ports, HD Audio and two USB 2.0 ports at the front.
The underside has plenty of ground clearance thanks to some very durable feet which are tipped with four firm rubber grips. The PSU benefits from a slide-out and washable dust filter, but you’ll also find an extra intake with a 120mm / 140mm optional fan mount.
The motherboard back-plate features a CPU cooler mounting cut-out, as well as four good size cable routing cut-outs that are fitted with high quality rubber grommets. There are also a few smaller cable routing holes at the top of the motherboard for dealing with CPU power cables and fan cables for any top mounted cooling.
In the top you’ll find a high quality 200mm Aerocool fan, but you can always remove this and installed 2 x 120mm / 2 x 140mm fans or up to 240 / 280mm water cooling radiators.
The PSU mount benefits from four thick rubber pegs which will help reduce noise and vibrations, and the base fan mount features an internal dust filter to help keep your system well protected and clean.
Having 5 x 5.25″ drive bays does seem excessive given that the case has a built-in fan controller, but each does come fitted with a good quality quick-release tool-free mechanism and the bottom bay also comes fitted with a 5.25″ to 3.5″ / 2.5″ adaptor to help you expand your storage space even further.
There are 7 hard drive bays in total and there is loads of ventilation through the bays to allow the front 200mm fan to keep the rest of the system nice and cool.
The 140mm exhaust fan at the back adds another touch of blue to the chassis and there is plenty of room at the back for a 120 / 140mm AIO water cooler should you want to take the fan out.
Each expansion bay is fitted with a ventilated re-usable cover and instead of screws you’ll notice these lock-in levers which pin your GPU or similar expansion card against a firm rubber pad. Quick and easy to use and completely tool free.
The back of the motherboard is littered with cable tie loops that will really help in keeping your cable management in order.
And there is plenty of clearance for a lot of excess cables should you get lazy and feel the need to just cram it all behind the motherboard.
Behind the front panel cover you’ll see a few extra cable routing holes above and below the fan, as well as a few orange cables that supply the front panel LED’s with power.
The top panel lifts off, but the IO panel towards the front is attached to it so you have to handle it with care.
The whole build only took me twenty minutes to bolt together, there is a lot of space to work with on the interior of the GT-S and my test components clipped into place with ease.
Cable routing is really good and all that space behind the motherboard made it easy to get a clean-looking final build. The PSU mount is perfect for our ATX PSU and it’ll no doubt benefit from the bottom air filter.
The hard drive bays look great finished in blue and offer up plenty of room for airflow to keep the drives cool and let air through the bays to feed the rest of the system.
I decided to remove the rear fan in favour of our Corsair H80i, which means I’m still able to use the 200mm fan mounted in the top of the case.
The expansion card clams worked perfectly and it’s nice to see a solution that doesn’t involve using screws in small spaces.
The cable routing grommets are cut into smaller panels so any passing cables don’t pull and distort the rest of the grommet, giving a much cleaner look overall.
With the side panels back in place, as well as the magnetic 5.25″ drive bay cover, the GT-S looks incredible, it certainly has presence!
The clear side panel window gives an unspoilt view of the chassis interior and while you could install 120mm or 140mm or even a 200mm fan here, it would be a shame to spoil the view.
Hit the power button and the soft blue lighting shines through the top mesh, bathes the interior in a cool glow and of course lights up those four extra LED lights on the front panel.
The Aerocool GT-S is without a doubt a premium grade product, which is why it comes with the premium price tag of £102.12 from CCL Computers. This puts it right alongside the Fractal Design Arc XL and NZXT Phantom, both great chassis in their own right, but really the GT-S is more in line with the Phantom in terms of design. The GT-S is packed full of features, a fan controller, cool lighting and large fans, all of which add to its value for money.
Aerocool have really outdone themselves this time around and the GT-S offers a lot of unique selling points that set it out from the crowd. With the chassis market already crammed full of great choices, especially for those who have around £100 in their budget, it can be hard to sway away from tried and tested fan favourites from brands such as NZXT, Corsair and Coolermaster, but Aerocool are steadily building a solid reputation of their own that is certainly worthy of your attention. Just like we saw with the Xpredator and the BX500, or in fact any of the Aerocool PGS series of cases, they really do know how to make a great chassis and the GT-S is another solid addition to that range.
The inclusion of a set of high quality, large, low RPM fans and a fan controller really adds to the value for money and while we are seeing this from a lot of high-end products recently, it’s nice to see Aerocool are also putting in these extra features. A good set of dust filters is always welcome too, although the air filter designs could be more consistent, given that the PSU has a slide out washable one, the base fan mount a screw in one and the front panels is built-in, so has to be brushed / hoovered clean. Regardless of design, at least all the important filters are in place and that’s what matters in my opinion.
The front panel cover is pretty cool, as it can be slid down to get to the top drives, or just popped off for quick and easy access. It’s great if you don’t often use your optical bays as it keeps the front panel looking neat and tidy. Why Aerocool went so far to include five 5.25″ drive bays is uncertain, going against the current market trend of phasing them out.
There is no doubt that this chassis is a great choice for a multi-GPU setup and I especially love the locking mechanism for mounting expansion cards, the less time I have to use a screw driver when installing my components, the better.
It is an expensive case and does have to fight off some pretty series competition, truth be told I think it is very hard to buy a “bad” chassis at this price range, so long as you stick to familiar brand names. The Aerocool isn’t better than the NZXT or Fractal products of a similar price, but it is different and if you’re on the market for something a little more unique, then the GT-S is a great option. The build quality is solid, there’s plenty of included features that are suitable for high-end systems, great cooling capabilities and while the design is subjective, I think it looks pretty awesome.
- Solid build quality
- Lots of storage space
- Tool free expansion card mounts
- Air filters
- Lots of space for extra fans and radiators
- Several high quality fans included
- Built-in fan controller
- Unique design
- It is a little expensive, which may put off those unfamiliar with the brand
- A more consistent dust filter design would have been preferred
“Aerocool have shown once again that they can make a great case and we expect it will prove popular with system builders and gamers given its unique aesthetics. Aerocool might not have a huge reputation like some of the other premium chassis brands, but they’re certainly on the right track to earning one, especially with products like the GT-S.”
Thank you Aerocool for providing us with this sample.