Cooler Master HAF 922 Case Review
By Gabriel Torres on May 12, 2009
Cooler Master HAF 922 is a mid-tower version of HAF 932, which we have already reviewed. Some changes had to be made in order to reduce the size of the case, and the main ones were the reduction of the size of the fans (the two 230 mm fans were reduced to 200-mm models and the 140 mm fan was reduced to 120 mm model), the reduction of the number of 5.25” from six to five, the reduction of the number of USB ports from four to two and the absence of a set of wheels. The new model, on the other hand, brings features not present on HAF 932.
Looking at the case for the first time we were impressed by its impeccable external paint job and sturdy aspect.
In Figure 3, you can see the front panel from this case and, as you can see, it doesn’t have a front door. This case has five external 5.25” bays, all of them using meshed covers (which are great to improve the internal airflow) with dust filters (which prevent dust from entering the PC). On the lower section from the front panel Cooler Master added a big 200-mm fan rotating at 700 rpm (19 dBA) that glows red when it is turned on. A great feature from HAF 922 not found on HAF 932 is the presence of an on/off switch for the front fan LED’s. Like the bay covers, this fan has a dust filter in front of it.
Although officially this case uses a smaller fan, the actual size of the fan blades is exactly the same as the 230 mm model used on HAF 932: 190 mm!
All fans from this case use a 3-pin motherboard connector, so they can installed directly on your motherboard allowing you to monitor their speed.
Cooler Master HAF 922 has a 200-mm fan on its top rotating at 700 rpm (19 dBA). This fan can be replaced with two 120 mm fans if you want. Another interesting thing is that even though it is officially smaller than the 230 mm fan used on HAF 932, both of them use 190 mm blades.
On the top part from front panel you can also find two USB ports (HAF 932 has four), an eSATA port and mic in and headphone jacks. The full tower version also has a FireWire port, not present on HAF 922. As mentioned, one advantage of this model over its big brother is the presence of an on/off switch for the front fan LED’s.
Finally we have the rear panel in Figure 7. The first thing that we noticed was that the rear part and the interior of HAF 922 are not painted (this also happens with HAF 932).
On this case the power supply is installed on the lower section of the case and it has one 120 mm fan (1,200 rpm, 17 dBA) and two holes for an external water cooling solution. These holes are protected by a rubber cover, so you won’t need to break anything on your case to have them available.
A unique feature found on this case is the presence of a vertical slot on the right side. This slot allows you to install an I/O bracket containing connectors or a blower to remove hot air from inside the case, as we will explain more in the next page.
Now let’s see how HAF 922 looks like inside.
The side panels are fastened to the chassis using thumbscrews, which is great. Even though you can remove the right panel, the motherboard tray is permanently attached to the chassis. The panels are painted only on the external side, as you can see in Figure 8. It would be nice if all the internal parts were also painted black.
You can install either one 200-mm fan or two 120 mm fans on the left panel. The full version of this case comes already with a 230 mm fan installed on this panel.
In Figure 9 you have an overall look from the interior of this case.
You can install a 140- or 120 mm fan on the bottom part of the case, as shown in Figure 10.
Instead of using a screwless mechanism for fastening daughterboards to the case, HAF 922 uses thumbscrews. This is, in our opinion, an improvement over HAF 932, which uses a plastic mechanism. In our experience such mechanisms tend to easily break.
In Figure 11, you can see the unusual slot located above the seven traditional slots. This slot allows you to install an I/O bracket containing connectors or a blower that pulls hot air from inside the case and blows it to outside the case. You can install here any blower that was originally created to be installed in any available expansion slot (click here to see an example). This can be a nice feature especially if you have video cards that heat a lot.
This case uses the same kind of screwless mechanisms found on HAF 932, but with one less 5.25” bay. You can then install up to five 5.25” devices (or four, if you use the 5.25”-to-3.5” adapter that comes with the case to install a floppy disk drive or a memory card reader) and up to five hard disk drives (or six, if you use the 5.25”-to-3.5” adapter and won’t have a floppy disk drive or memory card reader installed).
Each hard disk drive bay is actually a small drawer, which includes a screwless installation mechanism with a shock absorber to prevent the noise produced by the spinning of the hard disk drives motors to propagate to the chassis.
Cooler Master HAF 922 case main specs include:
Cooler Master HAF 922 is targeted to users that want a good mid-tower case full of features. Here is a summary of what we found about this case.
In summary, HAF 922 is a good case, in some aspects being superior than HAF 932 (thumbscrews for fastening daughterboards, dust filters, on/off switch for frontal fan light, extra slot). The only “problem” we found with this case was its suggested price of USD 129, especially when we have CM Storm Scout coming with a USD 109 suggested price and presenting a superior overall construction quality.