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Recently, there has been a teaser thread posted in the forum by PlayfulPhoenix (Joshua) regarding a new Chimera product, which would be the first new addition to the Chimera Industries product portfolio beyond the Cerberus. Interest was high, with people trying to figure out what this product was, how small it was, and the like.
During Computex 2018, SFF Network was granted exclusive first access to the chassis. Let’s raise the curtains on what may just be a game changing product!
Walking into the SFFLAB suite, we were greeted by quite the sight: existing SFFLab products, such as the DanCase A4, the NFS S4 and the NCase M1. Taking pride of place at the back of the room, overlooking Taipei.
This, this is the Chimera Mach One. This flexible chassis is a new direction for Chimera, with a different, yet suitably subtle aesthetic. Measuring in at a 18.5 L, including any protrusions, this chassis offers numerous build options, including multiple distinct layouts.
In all it’s naked glory. The Mach One is based on a steel core chassis, with aluminium panels. You may notice something here – the first clear picture of the Mach One above was of an M-ITX configuration – this is the Mach One configured in one of the M-ATX formats. A full sized (244x244mm) board fits tightly, but with room enough for system building, with great cooling capacity. Yes, the fan filters will be included.
The rear features a cutout a the top, for your peripheral cables to pass through, and a mount for a SFX PSU at the base. We passed on our concern regarding the bottom part of the cable cutout, and the lack of cable protection, and this feedback was received well, with possible changes in the works. Keep in mind that these chassis are still in the prototype stage!
Using the “Back to Back” layout, the fully built, watercooled, display system featured an Intel i9 processor on the ASRock X299e-ITX/ac motherboard. A Titan XP graphics card is part of the loop, running off a flexible riser. Mounted behind the GPU is an Elgato 4K60 Pro capture card, running off a M.2 to PCIe riser.
A masterpiece to behold.
One of the design aspects that defines the chassis are the 8 cutouts in the corners. These enable the panels to be slid up, and then removed, but they make a well defined break from the regular straight panel lines.
Mach One, with a space. The small hole under the logo is for attaching the various layout options.
Supporting up to a 60MM 2 x 140 radiator, as well as many smaller options. The demo system above featured a Hardware Labs Nemesis 280GTX radiator and a pair of 25mm Chromax fans, combining to make a 85mm thick cooling sandwich.
On the base of the chassis, more mounting options, including a single 2.5″ drive mount, can be found.
Looking down from the top, we note that the IO sits at the top, much like the Silverstone FT03 Fortress. The layout of the cards is more apparent, with support for up to three slots of goodness – multiple flexible risers can be used to run up to three cards in here. The possibilities!
Also of note is the short length 5.25″ “drive bay” allowing reservoirs such as this EKWB unit to be fitted, as well as other options. The aftermarket pump heatsink on this EKWB reservoir fits nicely as well!
A second look at the 5.25″ bay.
Daytime (I just had to come back for a second look!), and the Mach One still sits here, tempting me. In the harsher light of day, the curves and body lines of the case become more apparent, however, the case still performs excellently aesthetically. A side note, the side panel windows are a custom 1.5mm thick tempered glass with no tint.
The front panel, and indeed all the panels, use sliding rubber grommets to be attached. In the prototype units, these rubber grommets were soft and subtle, making it difficult to remove and install the panels. Chimera has heeded our concerns here, and harder rubber is in the works to ease the panel mounting procedure.
The rear cutout in detail.
Over two thousand, six hundred holes are punched into the panel of this premium level configuration. The panel is then bent on two sides, this is an amazing piece of workmanship, with no holes elongated by the bending process.
Backlit (by virtue of my Nokia 6 phone), the Mach One logo is bold.
Risers! There will be many various riser options offered for the Chimera Mach One chassis.
Two cards (Titan XP, Elgato 4K60 Pro), one drain loop (a fantastic addition), and a naked rear end.
Chimera and SFFLAB are excited about this new chassis, and so are we. They ask that you share this around, enabling the wider community to give feedback on the design. The discussion thread is here, so go nuts!