Corsair 5000D Airflow Review
Elegant Airflow Possibilites
Corsair has taken their winning formula from the earlier 4000 series and scaled it with plenty of options for (literally) cool and very clean looking builds. Cooling capability seems very impressive and the tastful appearances are certainly easy on the eyes.
Steel, plastic and tinted glass come together very cleanly & precisely to display top notch fit and finish – in that signature Corsair design language way. It is trivial to see the similarities with the previous mid-tower 4000 series.
Airflow is right there in the name, so we should be able to count on that. Our specific 5000D unit has three perforated sides – top, front, and motherboard-tray-side. They are already looking very promising for excellent airflow, read on for more.
Additional personal note: the tempered glass protective peel was one of the best I have had to date. Recommend.
- Model Number: 5000D Airflow
- Compatibility: mITX, mATX, ATX, EATX (305mm x 277mm)
- Dimensions: 520mm x 245mm x 520mm 20.47″ x 9.65″ x 20.47″ (L x W x H)
- Left Side: Full Tempered Glass
- Right Side: Steel (5000D and Airflow, Tempered Glass in 5000X RGB)
- Front Panel: Solid (5000D), Perforated Steel (Airflow), or Tempered Glass (5000X RGB)
- Top Panel: Sold Steel (5000D), Perforated Steel (Airflow), or Tempered Glass (5000X RGB)
- HDDs: 2 combo trays included
- SSDs: 3 trays included on a single mounting surface
- Front Radiator: 360mm / 280mm / 240mm
- Motherboard Tray Radiator: 360mm / 240mm (MB Tray and Front cannot be used at the same time)
- Rear Radiator: 120mm
- Included Fans: 2x 120mm Fans with AirGuide Technology, 3x SP120 RGB ELITE with the 5000X
- Additional Fan Support:
- Front: 3x 120mm/ 2x 140mm
- Top: 3x 120mm, 2x 140mm
- Motherboard Tray: 3x 120mm (after removing the side cover)
- Rear: 1x 120mm
- Front I/O: 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 3.1 Type C, 1x Microphone/Audio
- Dust Filters: Front, Top, PSU bottom, Motherboard Tray side
- Included Controller: 6 Fan PWM Repeater, Lighting Node CORE 6 Fan PWM Repeater (5000X)
- GPU Length: 420mm available
- Rear cable space depth: 25mm
- CPU Cooler: 170mm
$164.99 USD MSRP 5000D
$164.99 USD MSRP 5000D Airflow
$204.99 USD MSRP 5000X RGB
“The CORSAIR 5000D AIRFLOW is a mid-tower ATX case that shows off your PC, and not its cables, with an airflow- optimized front panel for maximum ventilation to your system. A wealth of flexible cooling options let you build your PC your way, including room to mount up to 10x 120mm fans or multiple 360mm radiators, and a motherboard tray with customizable side fan mounts.”
Exterior and Panels
Front top mounted I/O shows off modern ports including USB 3.1 Type-C, USB 3.0 ports and a mic / audio combo.
Behind the front panel, we find a nice easily removable fine sheer mesh filter which should work great for catching dust. The top filter is slightly more coarse but still very fine, and is held down with a full strip of edge magnets. The side panels are held firm with thumb screws and a surprising amount of friction (no sudden *drops* of your sweet tinted glass panel after loosening the screws thankfully). The thumbscrews all seem to be nicely retained in place, for your “do-not-lose-this” pleasure.
Most of the panels fit together using a ball and socket style approach, or internally there are tabs which slot into receiving sections. This has the side benefit of holding the panels in place while affixing them with screws.
See the yellow / green Corsair style highlights? Now you can understand the lighting choice for the photographs. Onward.
The yellow / green bits really do call your attention: “Pull here”, “Turn this one”. The entire case is well designed and tasteful.
Cables: Well Managed
The back panel has a few delightful touches for builders, notably a hinged panel to hide away all pretty much all of your cable runs! Swinging open the panel reveals 25mm of space and Corsair’s RapidRoute Cable Management channels. This makes it obvious and easier to run large cables or bundles around the back side, as you can see later in the build how that actually works.
The swinging cover panel is removable as well, making actually doing all the cable routing much easier. I can see that Corsair has put a lot of thought into helping builders towards elegant solutions with the 5000D Airflow.
There is not a lot say here, except that the instruction manual is small but linguistically thick, the screws are nicely separated into bags and ID’d for correct usage via the manual, and the inclusion of a right angle USB header adapter is a step in a sensible direction, given the wiring angle coming from behind the side tray. I probably could have used one for the 24 pin power as well.
As previously mentioned, there is a perfectly serviceable PWM fan hub is also included. The RGB version of the cases as a lighting controller at the same time.
One fun thing though. I can’t be sure that all the 5000 series cases will have them, but our review unit included an ample supply of Corsair labeled velcro wiring straps. Ample.
You can also see above and below the two different shaped finishing blocks which can be set into the space just behind the front. One is more open from the PSU basement side, and would allow the HDD tray to slide forward a bit and for wiring and airflow to pass through. The other panel gently closes that area off to neatly hide the wiring monster coming out of your power supply. Use of either does not seem to inhibit the installation of tall front mounted radiators.
Room for Rads
As previously mentioned, there is plenty of room for radiator cooling. Here’s a 360mm held in place for scale. If the motherboard side tray is removed, there is room for mounting up to a 360mm rad to the back panel also. This is a more popular option in case designs lately, and is can be quite visually appealing in presentation for cooling features.
Side Panel Features & Wiring
Removing the motherboard tray panel is fairly straight forward. There are a couple of inner thumbscrews towards the front which might be tricky to reach, but easy enough to do. The side panel air intake also has a removable mesh filter, held in with top and bottom clips and a few embedded magnets. Very nice. Here is a couple of attention to detail items: look at the rolled metal edges beneath the pass through grommets, and the curved metal retention carve-outs for the filter in the side panel. Excellent work here Corsair, and it shows that they are committed to making a quality product here.
Also note the included PWM pass-through fan controller, a nice addition to keep all the fans in sync and wires neatly hidden. While testing the build, the fan controller worked exactly as expected.
Other Interesting Features
There is a removable panel directly behind the motherboard, which has hole patterns for a variety of mounting options. Some of them seem to line up with drives. The bottom PSU filter is easily accessible from the rear, and the PCIe slot covers have the same Tie Fighter-wing-like style punch out design as seen over the rest of the case. Attention to detail: like it. Finally, when running the Corsair cable straps into the routing guides, do it like in the picture. It might not be obvious at first, and you definitely want your sails right-side up when done, right?
Lets Build In It
Gear for the build. I pulled as much Corsair gear as I could locate, it just seemed fitting. Also trying out the Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Master with a 10700K for the first time. The PSU has to be slid in from the inside, I personally prefer the PSU mounting plates which set the unit from the outside.
It is a bit tricky to get all the wiring through the grommets from the back side and make that immediate 90 degree turn from behind the motherboard tray. This is why Corsair includes the 90 degree USB adapter. You can make your life more difficult by having a top mounted radiator in the way, preventing the removal of the MB tray. There’s an other for routing your cooling, and wiring, so think it through. Get your wiring in place first, probably without the side panel in place, then top rads. Ask me how I know this. The end result is a clean appearance however, and probably worth the effort.
I lit up the inside to show just how easily the air flows through these panels.
As I stated previously, this is my first Z490 build with the Gigabyte Aorus Master and Intel 10700k. I did try some 5.1Ghz overclocks with it initially, and it worked fine. I could see that it was going to take more work to be thermally controlled though, as the 240mm AIO Corsair H100i could not keep up initially. For testing purposes, I only enabled XMP on the 3200 ram, and left the CPU clocks at stock. The GPU is the triple slot EVGA RTX 2080 dual fan – with so much room in the case, I figured why not? No OC on the GPU for testing either.
|PC Perspective Test Platform|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Master|
|Processor||Intel 10700K all core stock 4.7Ghz|
|Memory||Corsair Dominator Platinum (4 x 8GB) DDR4-3200 CL16|
|GPU||EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra Gaming, No OC|
|Storage||Intel 660p 1tb NVME (boot)|
|Storage||Micron 5100 Pro 1tb SSD|
|Power Supply||Corsair RM1000x|
|CPU Cooler||Corsair H100i RGB Pro XT 240mm AIO|
|Operating System||Windows 10 64-bit Version 1909|
I tried to get that Corsair yellow / greenish thing going with the lighting. I don’t have any Corsair RGB ram however, so that’s an obvious miss.
The case seemed to be able to flow enough air as it was, so I left the front and top panels in place for running some cooling tests. I did vary two things slightly. 1. The AIO fan speed “aggression” via the Corsair iCue software from “Balanced” to “Quiet” (Pump always on “Balanced”) and 2. removing the side glass panel. Please note that once the fans started to move some air, unstressed components like the GPU actually got cooler from their idle temps. In fact, I measured sub-ambient temp on the intake panel after the fans had been running for a while (21.8°C room ambient -> 20.9°C front intake metal). [Ed. After checking this again, days later, with a different Accurite gauge, they were within 0.1° with the case being 0.1°C warmer] The room was slightly chill, yes.
Noise measurements were taken 24″ directly in front of the case, slightly below the level of the top of the case.
Corsair has made a solid and excellent enclosure with the 5000D Airflow. It was easy to see their attention to detail and notice the high build quality. The ventilated panels are sturdy, heavy and internal panels are well secured, and fit evenly. In fact, the entire built case is rather heavy as a result.
The cooling options are outstanding when taken in conjunction with the airflow possibilities. In testing, I had great results using only the included 2 fans for case flow. The wiring coming around the motherboard tray shroud is probably the area that needs the most thought for a builder, as the rear panel can hide just about all your wiring run issues for you! The included wiring runners and retainers – Corsair’s RapidRoute Cable Management – works well. There’s plenty of room for custom water cooling or larger motherboards and the largest GPUs could find a home in this case. The 5000D Airflow checks all the right boxes for elegant good looks and cooling capabilities, so it is easy to recommend to someone in the market for such a case. The only issue currently is the somewhat higher then expected pricing, likely due to logistical issues coming out of China.
This reflective moment brought to you by The Walking Dead. Party on.
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How Product Was Obtained
The product is on loan from Corsair for the purpose of this review.
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