Taking A Closer Look Around
The Cooler Master Centurion 531 incorporates an all steel chassis fitted with an aluminum front bezel that is fitted with plastic end caps top and bottom. The 531 chassis has openings for five exposed 5.25′ drives and one exposed 3.5′ drive. The bezel can be easily removed without tools by releasing four plastic catches located along the inside edges of the case.
The Power-On button, Reset button, and indicator lights are mounted on the front of the case in the lower right corner, beside the front fan vent openings.
Near the bottom of the front panel, behind the slotted vent openings, is a 120mm case fan.
The blue LEDs built into the fan produce a nice lighting affect for the case without being overbearing.
Removing the front bezel exposes the front fan air filter.
Unfortunately, removing the filter element for cleaning is not a tool-less operation and requires first un-snapping the plastic switch housing and then removing four screws.
Both the front and rear 120mm case fan stamped grills in the Centurion 531 use an open honey comb pattern that is better than most for allowing good airflow. (Of course hard-core purists will want to remove the stamped grills all together for maximum airflow with minimum noiseâ€¦ 🙂
The external I/O panel is located on top of the 531 case to provide easy access for both desktop and under desk placement.
Â· IEEE 1394 Firewire
Â· Headphones out
Â· Microphone In
Â· USB 2.0 (2)
Both side panels on the Centurion 531 are removable but the top panel is not. The left side panel has ventilation slots and a telescoping shroud inside to help direct cool room air to the main processor heatsink fan area.
The shroud position is not adjustable so it may or may not line up with your particular HSF. A 80mm case fan can be mounted to the side panel instead of the fan shroud or sandwiched between the panel and the fan shroud for increased airflow.
The right side panel is solid and does not include any vent holes. Removing it however provides access to the ‘back-side’ of the case, which offers a lot of space behind the upper drive bays for tidying up and hiding wiring.
Moving around to the rear of the case we see a pretty typical ATX layout. Below the power supply is a single 120mm case fan opening. No fan is included with the Centurion 531 for the rear position and most users will want to purchase and install one for better airflow. Alternate hole patterns are provided for mounting either a 92mm or 80mm rear case fan if desired.
Looking at the bottom of the case, we see four standard rubber feet.