Gigabyte Sumo 4112 Case Review

Written by Harry Butler

August 7, 2009 | 10:48

Tags: #100 #airflow #aluminium #atx #case #performance #review #reviewed #steel #sumo #tested

Companies: #gigabyte

Interior and fittings

Sliding the side panel off reveals the Sumo’s guts, and sadly they’re not as nice as the classy exterior. The internal chassis and all the internal panelling is all made of plain painted steel, and while this can be fine if finished and polished up properly (see the Cooler Master HAF 922 review), on the Sumo it all just looks a bit plain.

The large motherboard compartment, while appearing at first glance roomy, is actually rather deceptive - although it’s very high, which makes fitting larger CPU coolers easy, it’s worryingly short. A 10.5in long graphics cards (basically any recent high end card) will struggle to fit into the Sumo without some form of hardware gymnastics. With graphics cards showing no sign of shrinking in the near future this is serious concern. Needless to say, you simply wouldn't fit either the Inno3D iChill GeForce GTX 275 or an Arctic Cooling Accelero Xtreme 4870X2 inside.

Gigabyte Sumo 4112 Case Review Gigabyte Sumo 4112 - Interior Gigabyte Sumo 4112 Case Review Gigabyte Sumo 4112 - Interior
Click to enlarge - it might look roomy, but 10.5in long graphics cards struggle to fit

The motherboard compartment also lacks any kind of pre-cut routeing holes or cable management system beyond a solitary cable clip stuck onto the Sumo’s drive cage. This makes building a tidy PC a difficult job, especially when it comes to PSU cables. With no room to tuck cables away between the motherboard and the right-hand side panel either, you’ll be forced to hide cables in unused drive bays, which isn’t ideal.

However, there are some genuinely nice touches inside the Sumo, not least the fact that all three 120mm fans are wired together, requiring just a single 3-pin fan header to power them all. There’s also a bits box pre-installed into two of the Sumo’s four 3.5in hard disk drive bays to help prevent you losing all the case’s fittings and bits. This is a handy inclusion if you’re like us and tend to simply lump all those spare bits and bobs together in a disorganised mess.

Gigabyte Sumo 4112 Case Review Gigabyte Sumo 4112 - Interior Gigabyte Sumo 4112 Case Review Gigabyte Sumo 4112 - Interior
Click to enlarge - the only place to hide cables is in unused drive bays

These positives notwithstanding, there’s a fair bit that’s not great about the Sumo’s internals. Because the top case panel is riveted into place, mounting the PSU into the case's roof is another task involving holding your hardware at precarious angles. Furthermore, while the tool-less 5.25in and 3.5in drive bays work great, the tool-less expansion card retention system doesn’t inspire confidence – what’s so wrong with a Phillips-head screw?

Our biggest worry is the lack of ventilation in the case. While the twin rear blue-LED 120mm fans are bound to provide a decent amount of case exhaust, intake airflow from the front 120mm fan is badly obstructed by the 3.5in drive enclosure and the aforementioned bits box. Worse still, there are no additional fan mounts anywhere in the case. This means no support for internally mounted watercooling radiators (although there are pre-cut holes for an external loop) and no option in the future to upgrade your system's cooling.

The fact that the two rear 120mm blue LED fans don't match the case's front [i]red[/] LED illumination is also baffling, and when all are lit up, the lights clash horribly. Let's hope Gigabyte can decide on a single colour scheme for it's cases in the future.
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