SilverStone’s case arrived in a pretty much standard carton packaging like most cases would. The first thing that makes an impression is the company logo with big letters and an even bigger snowflake – Silverstone’s symbol, and below it there’s the series name – Precision series. One side of the box has been printed with all technical specifications, features and a picture of the case, placed inside. On the other side there’s a picture with the interior of the model, along with some useful info about its features and capabilities.
|Precision Series internals||Packaging and User Manual|
Inside the carton box is the well-packed case, covered in nylon and hard, thick Styrofoam on the top and bottom sides preventing any damage to be caused. After I payed some attention to the user manual seemed a little poor in terms of explaining how to install an actual system inside, but it was full of information about the case’s features and removable parts, so I guess it’s not a problem – considering that if you search and buy a case like this, you know what you’ll be doing with it.
Having all protective materials removed I proceeded to inspecting the case’s externals:
The model we received for testing was SST-PS06B-A (black, grey trimming) with no side window, but PS06 has three more models:
- SST-PS06B (black, blue trimming)
- SST-PS06B-W ( black, blue trimming + window)
- SST-PS06B-WA ( black, grey trimming + window)
The case is entirely black painted, only the silver snowflake logo of SilverStone stands out in contrast to the dark color. The actual chassis is made from steel, the top and front panels are plastic with mesh grill. The overall dimensions of the case are 210mm(W) x 525mm(H) x 520mm(D) or 57.3 liters of space, coming at 9.05kg, making it a Medium Tower case with SSI-CEB, ATX up to 10.6” and Micro-ATX motherboard support.
|Top View||Rear View|
After spending a couple of minutes looking at the case from all sides, just to get familiar with its exterior it was time for me to begin removing everything that could be removed, so that I could get a better understanding of how its features work and what’s to be expected from the case in terms of build quality.
First thing’s first – before being able to remove the side panels you’ll need to unscrew the four screws with a tool – all of them were pretty tight to be removed by hand only. In fact, all the screws that I had to unscrew were factory tightened to a level that you definitely need a screwdriver to do the job. It’s not a big deal of misfortune, because the side panels have handles and by pulling them gently they simply open like a door with no force applied to the motion.
I removed the panel that was hiding the space behind the motherboard tray and inspected the view in front of me – there were no rubber grommets on the cable management holes, but neither were there any sharp edges, so the cables that are about to be put trough there would be completely safe. Also there was a large CPU cutout, making CPU cooler installation an easy task.
To sum up the view behind the MB tray I should say that Silverstone has left enough openings for zip ties, making cables management a little bit easier.
|PS06 Internals||PS06 Cable Lenght and contents|
After removing the other side panel I was able to inspect the internals of the PS06, as shown on the carton box, that it arrived in. Nothing special at first glance, only some long, colored cables, along with very long USB 3.0 cable. I really would have liked to see all cables black sleeved, but sadly, there is no such thing here. Apart from that in a blue nylon bag, there was a small amount of screws and a USB 3.0 to USB 2.0 cable adapter – no zip ties, no special accessories. Happily, the length of the front panel cables is considerable.
Okay, that is pretty much all there is to say after removing the two side panels and having a look inside the chassis.
For the purpose of this review I’ll remove all or most parts that could be removed and then put them back in their corresponding places, explaining the process and every single detail. I think there are many cases out there that are really easy to disassemble, and PS06 is no exclusion to them – for about 15 minutes I was able to gently remove all the parts, most of them were held by screws. Here is a look of the bare chassis:
|Side View||Behind MB tray|
Stripped down only to its steel body the case was really light in terms of weight and I was surprised of how rigid it was. On the photos you can see that there are some elements, whose sole purpose is to add strength to the entire body of the case.
And these are the parts I was able to remove (excluding the side panels, not enough room in the photo for them):
- Two plastic parts of the top panel, one with mesh on top covering the AP181 fan
- Hot swap bay for 3.5″ and 2.5″ drives
- Power and Reset buttons
- HDD base for the HDD cage
- HDD cage
- Four HDD brackets
- Two dust filters (bottom and front)
- Front panel with mesh
- PSU support bracket
- 1x 120mm Silverstone fan
- 1x 180mm Silverstone AP181 fan
- 1x 120mm plastic fan bracket
Let’s begin to assemble the case in some order (not really a specific one)
First I installed the front 120mm fan that sits behind a mesh grill and the front dust filter. Second was the bigger 180mm fan, on top of the case.
Next was the bottom dust filter that slides into place and has a clip, holding it where it should stay and the PSU support bracket, which has several different holes that could be bolted on, according to the size of the PSU being installed.
|Bottom dust filter||PSU support bracket|
Proceeding to the hot swap drive bay – it is held by three screws and sits behind the front panel.
Front panel (along with front dust filter) is held by metal clips – very easy to remove and install.
Next on the list is the HDD cage. Before being able to install it, there is a plastic piece, acting as a base for the metal cage. It is screwed from the bottom of the case and has rails on top of it – enabling you to slide the HDD cage into place:
|HDD plastic base||HDD cage|
And this is how you install the HDD:
|HDD bracket with removed side clips||HDD bracket|
Precision PS06 has only four 3.5″ HDD drive bays, enough for me, but some may find it disturbing, if using more storage drives. The mounts for each HDD are made from plastic, have enough flex to them and each has two clips that hold the drive into place – on the right and on the left side. Once installed in the cage, the HDD won’t go anywhere – it fits perfectly and has no movement. Also, there are rubber mounts preventing any unwanted noise and vibration sounds coming out of a working drive.
Here is the time to say that this case has five 5.25″ drive bays using tool less design – you only need to push the drive inside and it clips into place. One of the drives is the actual hot swap bay with both 3.5″ and 2.5″ support – a really nice touch if you need fast data transfer to an SSD from HDD, without having to place the drive inside the case.
This is how the HDD stands when plugged in the hot swap bay. Sadly I have no SSD in my possesion to show, but according to the size difference, an SSD won’t stick out so much.
The only thing left now is the plastic top panel, consisting of two individual parts – one is the mesh grill and the other acts as a holder, maybe for a USB drive, cellular phone or even a cup, if you dare. It also has the two USB 3.0 ports (USB 2.0 backwards compatible with the added cable) and the audio jacks.
|Mesh grill||Clipped into place|
That’s about it, the case is assembled back together, now I believe it is time to install our test system inside to check out the performance of this Precision case.
While installing the test system I encountered a problem that made a bad impression on me – the lack of space behind the MB tray for the PSU cables. My power unit is with flat cables, fully modullar and I expected the side panel to close with as little force as possible, however I had to manage the cables and hold them before I could think of closing anything. Users with non-modullar PSU’s should be aware of that – of course, there is enough room to place the cables next to the HDD cage, but that is not the point we’re trying to make.
Nevertheless, I did put the system inside fairly quickly and this is how it looked like inside Silverstone Precision PS06.
And behind the MB tray:
Because of my CPU cooler, which is AIO water cooling unit, I did not put the plastic fan mount, whose purpose is to be placed on the rear exhaust fan position. I did not miss to mention it in the assembly process – it was just not needed in my setup.
Speaking of my setup, here it is:
Motherboard: Asus P6T Deluxe X58 OC Palm Edition
CPU: Intel I7-920, D0 stepping, running at stock speeds
Video card: Palit GT 640
Hard drive: Western Digital 640 GB Black Series
Power supply: Corsair RM750 W, Fully Modular
Memory: A-Data XPG 6 GB Triple channel, running at 1333 MHz
I believe now is the time to show you how the case performed in real world situation. The ambient temperature in my room was about 23-24 degrees Celsius.
The first test is at idle, the integrated fan controller on the AP181 (intake) fan is set to LOW. The CPU fan is PWM controlled by the Silent setting in BIOS, and the front 120mm fan is set to 12 volts.
|AP181 LOW, Idle||AP181 HIGH, Idle|
|AP181 LOW, Stress||AP181 HIGH, Stress|
Final thoughts and conclusion:
1. Silverstone Precision PS06 appearance – The case is clean looking, simple, with a nice Silverstone snowflake logo, reminding you of the company. The gray elements in our version remind me of Transformers in some way. Although there is not much contrast between the black and grey, the case looks like a robot’s body. This is amplified by the dock station on top, where you can put whatever you desire. Keep in mind that there are three more versions – we reviewed probably the most basic one of them all. The windowed and blue accent one looks amazing and fresh. The black/grey non-windowed case still has its looks, though.
2. Silverstone Precision PS06 performance – Easy case to work with, very easy to disassemble, very good in terms of build quality. Side panels are rigid with added support, the plastic elements feel nowhere near breaking, even when pushed hard. Everything clips into place and I had no clearance issues with the case, whatsoever. The hot swap bay seems like it could last forever, even if you use it frequently for drives. Dust filters come off easily for cleaning and also the part of the top panel that sits on top of the huge AP181 fan, just a click – and it’s ready for cleaning. The chassis feels strong and has multiple support points, which I showed when the case was stripped down. In terms of cooling – the case is a bit modest in this particular category, I really would have liked to see some additional fan mounts. Yes, the AP181 is a big, capable fan, also the 120mm one in the front does the job, but there’re only two more fan mounts – at the rear and bottom (both 120mm). As you can see from the photos it does perform very well as a matter of fact, but sacrifices should be made if you need to run the system cool.
3. Silverstone Precision PS06 noise level – the front fan at 12 volts is loud – that’s a fact. It sits too close to the grill and makes the all known irritating humming noise when air is passing through – I recommend using it at 7 volts at the most. If you keep the AP181 at low speed, you don’t give up on temperatures too much and the fan is quiet enough for normal usage – watching a movie or just browsing the web. If you put it on high – you have one more fan to talk about. Of course, the cooling then goes up a level, but it’s a choice you have to make with this case – silence and decent temperatures, or noise with nicely cooled system (that is if you don’t own a fan controller – then it’s a different story).
I think Silverstone Precision PS06 deserves the following reward:
Official price (MSRP): Silverstone Precision PS06 – $99.99 (ex tax)
Warranty: 24 months
Special thanks to SilverStone for providing us with a test sample.