In the eTeknix office today we have the latest entry to the Thermaltake Urban series, the Full Tower S71. We recently took a look at the fantastic mid-tower model “S31” and you can check out that review here. Yet as much as we liked the S31 we wanted more and we wanted something a little bigger, fortunately Thermaltake have answered our prayers and given us this monster of a chassis and I personally can’t wait to see what it has to offer.
With a price tag of around £130 there is no doubt that this is targeted at the high end and enthusiast markets, your average consumer just don’t normally spend that kind of money on a chassis and this price range is typically reserved for specialist builds that have a design and specification in mind, as well as a healthy sized budget to match as a full tower like this is more than capable of holding multiple graphics cards and high end components.
Thermaltake has a solid reputation to uphold and given that they’re S31 was really well made I have no reason to suspect anything less of it’s bigger brother the S71, so lets dive right into the good stuff and see just what Thermaltake have to offer with their latest premium chassis option.
As you can see from the specification below, the S31 is a full tower that clocks in at just over 10Kg, so it’s not going to be ideal to carry around for LAN gaming events but it should be well planted for any high end gaming rig. With support for plenty of extra cooling fans and more than enough 5.25″, 3.5″ and 2.5″ drives for most system builds, as well as 8 expansion slots, E-ATX motherboards and modern comforts such as USB 3.0, the S71 certainly sounds up to the job of a high end gaming rig.
The S71 features a similar box design to the S31, with a full colour graphic print that gives the whole thing a nice premium look, even if it is just the box.
In the box I found the usual assortment of screws, some good quality cable ties, a user guide, chassis buzzer, fan to molex adaptors and a 12v extension cable with both 8pin and 4pin connections.
The chassis features a matt / powerder black pain job on the exterior with similar style matching black plastics for the trim. The side panel features a large clear perspex window that gives a great view of the chassis interior too, or it would if there was anything in there to see, but this should look better in the build section.
The right side panel features a large recess section that will allow a lot of extra room behind the motherboard for cable management, but it gives a little style to this panel rather than just having it flat.
The top features a large ventilated section, perfect for any top mounting cooling such as fans and radiators.
The front panel features a very monolythic style door, with a subtle Tt logo in the bottom right and that main I/O panel at the top.
It’s pretty well equipped with a HDD SATA dock, built in two channel fan controller, 2 x USB 2.0, 2 x USB 3.0 and the usual headset, microphone, power and reset controls.
The front panel door can be easily clipped off, but also opens on a hinge to reveal four 5.25″ bays with covers which can be removed from the front.
The lower half features a large ventilation panel and a clip on dust filter for easy maintainance of the included 200mm air intake fan.
Around the back we have a slide out dust filter in the top of the chassis, a pre-installed 120mm exhaust fan, 8 well ventilated expansion slot covers, two water / cable routing cut-outs with rubber grommets and a bottom mounted PSU area.
The under side features yet another slide out dust filter (that’s three in total now), there are also four huge moulted feet that provide great ground clearance, each fitted with durable and grippy rubber.
The chassis interior features the same high quality paint job as the exterior, giving the whole chassis a really nice uniform appearance. There is a good size CPU cooler cut-out, as well as five cable routing holes with rubber grommets, there are also some small cable routing holes on the top right without grommets should you need them.
Each of the top three 5.25″ bays feature a quick release clip while the fourth features an adaptor bracket that would be suitable for a card reader or similar compact device. The five hard drive trays below that all support 3.5″ and 2.5″ drives.
The rear of the chassis features a good quality 120mm exhaust fan which comes with a sheathed black cable, keeping nicely with the slick all black design of the chassis. The expansion slot covers are all reusable and feature quick release thumb screws for easy installation.
The bottom air filter will provide airflow to both the PSU and a 120/140mm fan (optional).
The top of the chassis features a pre-installed 200mm low RPM exhaust fan, but you can mount a pair of 120mm or 140mm fans here, or even a water cooling radiator.
Around the back there are lots of cable tie loops, more than you normally see on a chassis of this size and this should help keep any excess cable in check, making for a very tidy looking buildd.
Build time for the S71 was the same as the smaller S31, taking just twenty minutes to get everything in place and looking tidy. This speed was mostly thanks to the expansive design and all our test components fit with relative ease.
Cable management is very clean looking and there are more than enough cable routing options for a much more complex system than the one we built today.
Airflow is unobstructed and the fans for our water cooler and graphics card have more than enough room to breath, deffinately more than enough room for a multi GPU setup here.
The Corsair H100i fit with plenty of room to spare and while the reservoir conflicted with the 5.25″ drive bay on the S31, we saw non of those issues with the S71.
With the side panel back in place we can see the exterior still looks sleek and cool, while the window panel gives us nice view of the clean interior.
Thermaltake have another great entry to their chassis ranges with the S71 and I see great things for the Urban range should they chose to continue this product line. Personally I’m still not a fan of the overall style of the chassis, much like I didn’t like the looks of the S31 either, but even I have to admit it’s still a great chassis, style is such a subjective quality and I can see many people are going to absolutely love the design of the S71. The powder black paint job looks great and the slanted, sleek looking front panel make quite a statement that is both understated and loud at the same time.
Build quality is on par with the competition and while nothing about it leaps out as exception build quality, I can’t say I found any rough edges, loose panels or unnecesary rattles with any part of if thoughout my testing and it’s as good as you would want it to be for a product of this price.
I do have one issue with this chassis however, it’s very expensive for a full tower at £130 and while there are several other products on the market within this price range I can’t help but think that they offer more for your money than what you get with the S71. Yet it’s really down to what you want from your own build and if you love the style of the S71 and it has the features required for your build then there is next to nothing that will sway you from picking this chassis, yes it is expensive but it’s by no means a disapointment in terms of quality or investment, it would just be nice if it were a little cheaper, although that much can be said about a lot of products on the market.
- High quality
- Plenty of features
- Great cable management
- Robust cooling support
- A little expensive
- Style is a little over eclectic
eTeknix says: Thermaltake have made another premium and very high quality product with the S71, one that is well suited to those looking for a bold design to house a high performance, multi GPU system and while it may be a little expensive it does give a lot in return. I really do hope that Thermaltake continue to develop and grow their Urban chassis product range in the near future.