In-Win Matrix Micro ATX Chassis Review


What is the Matrix? I could tell you a couple of things here, either a hard-to-follow story about robots harvesting humans for thermal power or I could tell you about the In-Win Matrix. I think I am going to tell you about the In-Win Matrix for two reasons, 1) it’s going to actually make sense, hopefully. 2) It is by far one of the sleekest and stylish home theater PC Chassis that I have ever seen. While combining stylish good looks, and great functions such as cable organization, and a multitude of front-mounted USB ports, this looks to be a great media box. Well now that we have the formalities out of the way, let’s move on to the review:

Product Provided By: In-Win

Closer Look
 
 Now let’s move on to the specs and features:
Specifications:
Case Size:
Tiny Tower Chassis
Material:
Pearl metallic-painted plastic panel SECC ECO Streel
External Drive Bay:
5.25″ x 1 3.5″ x 1
Internal Drive Bay:
3.5″ x 1
Front Ports:
USB2.0 × 4, IEEE 1394 A (FireWire), HD/AC’ 97 Audio
Dimensions ( H × W × D ):
13.6″ × 5.9″ × 13.7″ 346mm × 150mm × 347mm
M/B:
mATX
I/O Expansion Slots:
4×Full Height PCI/AGP expansion Slots
Power Supply:
SFX 12V, 300W
Thermal Solution:
Intel Mt. Jade Ref. Design, Partition Plate Cooling Tech(PPCT), 8cm Fan for HDD
Safety:
Meets RoHS, CE and FCC Class B Requirement
Security:
Padlock loop for padlock
Features:
 
Simplicity Theory
With beautiful lines and a simple design, the Matrix works well in contemporary and traditional spaces. The innovative Matrix offers a smart installation concept and enables a creative and practical approach to chassis design.
360 Degrees Visual Effect
The Matrix was designed to hide any sign of complexity, creating a non-obstructive 360-degree visual effect.
Back to The Basics
The stunning pearl white finish helps define every line and corner against the geometric design of the chassis.
Smart Cable Management
The back panel of the matrix opens up concealing cluttered cords and ports, giving the Matrix a contemporary look.
Partition Plate Cooling Technology (PPCT)
The Partition Plate reduces back draft to efficiently streamline airflow in a unilateral direction; providing exceptional thermal performance.
Volume VS. Size
Don’t let its small size fool you. At just 12.5 liters volume in size, the Matrix rivals larger chassis when it comes to thermal and acoustic performance. The Matrix is able to accommodate standard components, supporting four full height VGA cards and creating a small and quiet environment.
Excellent Thermal Solution
A 6cm fan helps keep your system cool and provides an efficient thermal solution.
Removable Mesh
The thermal vent on the side panel comes with a removable mesh screen to prevent dust from clogging any part of the internal structure of your chassis.
Now let’s get some testing done:
Test Setup:

 

  • CPU – Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
  • Motherboard – Asus P5B
  • RAM – 2 x 2 GB Balistix Tracers
  • 320gb HDD Seagate
  • OS – Windows XP Pro SP3
Testing:
 

For these tests we didn’t have a case to properly compare head to head with so the numbers that I will be recording will be more just to see how warm this little case gets. For this I will be taking Munks Micro ATX motherboard and installing it into the case and then running Prime 95 to see how warm it gets while running idle and while under load. Unfortunately the power supply that comes installed in the In-Win Matrix does not have a six pin connector so we were unable to test it with his video card as well this time around. I will also record the voltages of the supplied PSU while running Idle and load, I will also connect our LCD PSU tester to the power supply in order to test all of the voltages. The ambient temp in the room will remain a constant 21 degrees.

In-Win Matrix

Idle

Load

CPU

29°C (84°F)

47°C (117°F)

HDD

35°C (95°F)

37°C (99°F)

Case

34°C (93°F)

43°C (110°F)

 

 

PSU Idle Load Test

PSU

Idle

Load

+3.3

3.25v

3.23v

+5

4.89v

4.89v

+12

12.2v

12.2v

+5 Standby

4.92v

4.92v

 

 

 

LCD Tester

 

+5

4.9v

+12v1

12.1v

+3.3

3.3v

-12

12.2v

+12v2

12v

5vsb

4.9v

PG

270ms

 

 

As far as the temps for the case go I truly am not that surprised. Yes they may seem a little high and that might have to do that the only fan that is installed in the case is blowing on the hard drive. With a few simple tweaks I think that these numbers could be greatly improved upon. With the limited space inside the case I found that My Nexus Low-7000 CPU Cooler could be fit inside due to its small size, and if properly rigged you could also fit a couple small, silent fans inside to help create airflow to help cool inside.
 
As far as the supplied power supply goes I was impressed by its compact side and its +80% efficiency rating, and found it to be just enough to make this little media box run just fine, which is a good thing because when we tried installing another Micro ATX PSU inside the case it was actually too large to install. We found that the PSU came up with good numbers and didn’t falter in the least when it came to crunch time, and I think that running Prime 95’s burn-in test is more abuse than this media box is going to see in a long time.
 
Let’s move on to my final thoughts:
Conclusion:
 
I love it, and now is when I rant about it. Inside this little case there really isn’t much room to work with but I can live with that. Unlike big Full or even mid-tower cases there is next to no room once everything is installed inside the In-Win Matrix but it’s meant as more of business computers and home theater PC’s than it is for enthusiasts’.  With the ability to line up the cables in the back so that they aren’t going in every direction out the back is a big bonus. Also with all of the front, i.e. optical drives, front USB ports, and floppy drive, hidden behind small panels, that are help shut by magnets on not plastic clips that will break, this little case looks clean and just as stylish as most In-Win products that I have seen, and have come to enjoy.
 
So in the end would I recommend this case? Well if you are looking to setup a new home theater PC with a Micro ATX board, or if you are just looking to clean up and upgrade your old HTPC than this might be something that you want to look at. Another great idea for this case would to consider it for office use. As an office computer this little case would look great on someone’s desk, and with the cable organization that this case supports it again limits clutter on a desk, and once again it just looks great. So in the end, Home Theater PC/Office Computer = Good, Gaming PC= Bad.
 
Pros:
  • Looks Amazing, Could Fit In Anywhere
  • Has Four Front USB ports And Has Fire Wire
  • Front Panels Hidden
  • Comes With PSU
Cons:

 

  • Limited Space To Work In
  • Can Only Support Two SATA Devices
  • PSU Doesn’t Have Six Pin Connector For Some Video Cards
 
 
 

 

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