This case study discusses how the game developer, FSP CMT271A, has spent the last 5 years building a successful platform of games. The company’s first offering, “Mazerunner”, was published on Steam in 2011 and since then they’ve released more than 50 titles with an average playtime of 60 minutes per session.
The “cmt260” is a case that was designed for the Corsair Carbide Series 200R. It has a sleek, compact design and offers excellent cooling performance.
The CMT271A FSP is a sub-$100 Mid-ATX form-factor PC case that we’re looking at today. This is one of FSP’s more affordable products, claiming to be “particularly developed for DIY gamers who want the right balance of technology and elegance.” At the time of writing, it was available for $69.99 on Amazon and Newegg.
The CMT271A features a typical ATX configuration and is split into two interior compartments by a fixed partition. It is composed of black high-strength steel. Three 120mm fans up front, two 120mm fans or a 240mm radiator up top, and one 120mm fan in the back (which is already populated) are all available in the motherboard compartment.
CPU coolers up to 170mm in height, GPUs up to 325mm in length (for high-end graphics cards), two 3.5″ disks, and two 2.5″ drives are all supported. The drive bays are completely internal, as they are in many current cases.
Panel of Tempered Glass
A transparent tempered glass side panel may be seen on the CMT271A’s left side. A permanent plate that matches the right panel is riveted over the bottom compartment, which hides the PSU mount and the drive cage, while the glass panel covers the motherboard compartment. The glass is tinted as well, which makes the internals a little harder to see.
It’s also worth noting that FSP advertises the tempered glass panel as having a’slide path’ for added security and simplicity of installation. This is more of a shelf than a path, since after the panel has been moved far enough to the back of the case for the retaining pins to clear their catches, the panel is free to be delicately pulled away.
I/O Panel and Top
All I/O ports, as well as the power and reset buttons, were put on the top panel by FSP. There are four USB type-A ports available, two of which are USB 2.0 and two of which are USB 3.0. The microphone and headphone ports are on the right, while the power and HDD indicators are adjacent to the power and reset buttons on the left. A Type-C port is conspicuously lacking.
The top panel has a magnet filter that remains in place most of the time but can be easily removed for cleaning when necessary.
Front of the Case
Because all of the I/O ports are on the top of the casing, the CMT 271A’s front panel has no cable connections and can be easily removed by pulling forcefully from the bottom. The front panel contains side vents and a mesh front that allows air to flow through. To assist limit dust formation, FSP includes a magnetic filter behind the front panel that covers the top two fan locations and most of the third.
Inside the case, behind the front panel, there are three 120mm fan locations; however, the internal panel that separates the PSU and drive cage compartment will prohibit radiators bigger than 240mm from being used. FSP has left a slot with just enough enough for a third 120mm fan, but it’s not big enough to fit a fan plus a radiator.
Partition for the Motherboard
Standard ITX, mATX, and full ATX motherboards are all supported by the CMS271A. For cable routing, there are two openings above the motherboard tray and three cuts to the right of the tray. A cutout for accessing the rear of the CPU socket region for attaching coolers with retention mechanisms behind the socket is included with these cuts.
The motherboard tray contains threaded standoff holes that may be relocated to accommodate motherboards of various sizes. FSP has engraved a guide into the tray to illustrate where ATX, mATX, and ITX standoffs should be put. There are also a few cable tie punchouts beneath the motherboard tray to aid with cable management.
Mounting locations for two 2.5′′ drives flush to the motherboard tray have been supplied by FSP. Unfortunately, they cross the given cable routing cutouts, making them unsuitable in certain installations. The bottom 2.5′′ drive configuration was selected for this study since the top position was required for power cable routing to the motherboard and GPU. When shorter boards are utilized, a smaller cable routing cutout is available, but it isn’t big enough to accommodate the ATX 24-pin connection and isn’t near enough to anything else, such the USB 3.0 cable, to be helpful on the review system.
Compartment for Power Supply
In the bottom compartment, power supplies up to 150mm in length are supported. The intake of the PSUs is angled toward the bottom of the chassis, and a mesh filter is installed underneath the PSU intake. Longer PSUs, like in the case of the 160mm Corsair TX850M featured in this study, may provide extra cable routing challenges.
The CMT271A includes a single drive cage ahead of the PSU portion, which can accommodate one 3.5′′ drive inside and one 3.5′′ or 2.5′′ drive on top. The drive cage is secured to the bottom chassis panel by screws, and it must be removed to install or remove drives – it might also be removed to accommodate longer power supply.
Specifications for the FSP CMT271A
||Tempered GLass, SPCC Steel
|L x D x H Dimensions (mm)
||452mm x 380mm x 210mm
|CPU Cooler Maximum Height
|GPU Maximum Length
|Total Number of Expansion Slots
|Support for Motherboard Dimensions
||ATX, Micro-ATX, and Mini-ITX are all types of motherboards.
|Panel for Input and Output
||2 USB 3.0 ports, 2 USB 2.0 ports, and 3.5mm audio in/out
|Support for Power Supply
||ATX, with a suggested length of 150mm
|3.5′′ Internal Bays
|2.5′′ Internal Bays
|Fan Is Included
||Rear mount 120mm
|Positions of the Front Fans
||3 x 120mm
|Fan Positions at the Top
||2 x 120mm
|Support for the Radiator
||1 × 240mm x 240mm x 240mm x 240mm x 240mm
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