Gelid Darkforce Gaming Case Review
Much like most modern gaming cases, Gelid painted the interior of their Darkforce case entirely black, including all plastic parts and retention brackets. The case is relatively deep, allowing the installation of coolers up to 162mm tall and cards up to 410mm long. The motherboard tray is cut behind the CPU area, therefore most large CPU coolers can be installed without having to remove the motherboard from the case and also the installation of an extra cooling fan for the rear of the motherboard on the right side panel, a feature mostly meant for hardcore overclockers. Note that only a 15mm tall fan will fit!
Gelid also installed two small PCBs serving as power plugs for fans. One PCB can be found right next to the PSU compartment and another is found at the top right side of the motherboard tray. The PCBs are interconnected and powering the bottom PCB allows the installment of up to six cooling fans. Unfortunately there is no speed control associated with this feature; all of the connected fans are simply going to run at maximum speed.
Gelid placed a meshed filter beneath the PSU area which is not very dense but will hold the largest dust particles. The PSU can be firmly secured with the aid of the large black scratch. There is also another 120mm/140mm intake fan slot at the bottom of the case, unoccupied. You may use any size ATX PSU inside the Darkforce case but if you install a 140mm fan at the bottom of the case you are strictly limited to standard ATX size (maximum depth of 160mm) PSUs.
The expansion slot covers are partly perforated, allowing small volumes of fresh air to enter (or, depending on the configuration of the cooling fans, exit) the case. Thumbscrews are used to hold the expansion cards, although a screwdriver should be used for firm long term installation. Gelid also included a vertical expansion slot which of course is not meant to be used by any kind of expansion card which needs to be connected to the motherboard, it can however be used by accessories such as fan speed controller rheostats, diagnostic LEDs, switches and any other similar device which takes up an expansion slot without being actually connected to the motherboard itself.
Right above the slot covers Gelid has a simple black 120mm fan installed. It is a medium to low speed fan, rated at 1200RPM. Two more 120mm/140mm fans can be installed at the top of the case but out of the box these slots are empty.
A total of six HDD trays are present at the lower front part of the case, divided between two removable cages. The trays are facing sideways, allowing the easy removal of disk drives even when long cards are installed. A 120mm 1200RPM fan is installed right in front of the drive trays.
The HDD trays are plastic but they are tough and very nicely made, with rubber grommets to minimize vibration noise and feature support for 2.5” drives (laptop HDDs and SSDs) as well.
At the rear of the motherboard tray Gelid left enough space for the easy routing of the cables. All of the cables already present in the Darkforce are sleeved, forming a very clean look.
Our ICTT system fits inside the Darkforce very comfortably. There is plenty of room for working around the system and for routing the cables behind the motherboard tray.