Introducing the Corsair Obsidian 350D

It seems like just yesterday we were talking about Corsair's gargantuan Obsidian 900D, a behemoth designed with the single goal of housing as much computer as you can possibly imagine. The Obsidian 900D supersized the already successful 800D (along with its price tag), and judging from the comments left on the review it's exactly what a lot of the watercooling enthusiasts were waiting for.

What you may not be aware of is the fact that the 900D ran...a little late. I had one of the early review units, and it had actually been sitting in my living room for some time before the new embargo date hit and gave me a deadline. That's part of the reason why we're seeing another case from Corsair as quickly as we are; had the 900D been on time this still would've seemed like a pretty quick turnaround time. Proving someone over there has a sense of humor, though, Corsair is following up their largest case with their smallest.

I'm actually a little disappointed that the campaign around the 350D was basically subsumed by the 900D, because of the two cases I think the micro-ATX 350D is actually the more interesting one. With the 900D, the sky is really the limit as to what you can put in it (or more accurately, your wallet is the limit). The 350D, on the other hand, is a case for people who thrive on limitations. That's not to say the case has limitations, per se, but when you're confined to the micro-ATX standard you start having to make creative decisions. As you'll see, Corsair made a few of their own that make the 350D a particularly interesting specimen in what's often one of the most diverse enclosure categories.

Corsair Obsidian 350D Specifications
Motherboard Form Factor Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX
Drive Bays External 2x 5.25"
Internal 3x 2.5", 2x 3.5"
Cooling Front 1x 140mm intake fan (supports 2x 120mm/140mm)
Rear 1x 120mm exhaust fan
Top 2x 120mm/140mm fan mount
Side -
Bottom -
Expansion Slots 5
I/O Port 2x USB 3.0, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic
Power Supply Size ATX
Clearances HSF 160mm
PSU 200mm
GPU 300mm
Dimensions 17.3" x 8.3" x 17.7"
440mm x 210mm x 450mm
Weight 13.3 lbs. / 6.1 kg
Special Features USB 3.0 via internal header
Removable drive cages
Removable filters on intakes and bottom
Supports 280mm radiators
Price $99/$109 (without window/with window) MSRP

What needs to be considered in evaluating the Corsair Obsidian 350D is that this case is pretty clearly designed capitalize on liquid cooling. While my experiences with Corsair's closed loop coolers have been inconsistent, everyone benefits from them having a 280mm cooler like the H110 in their lineup. The existence of a 280mm cooler in Corsair's portfolio doesn't necessarily demand they include a place to mount it in all subsequent case designs, but it makes a convincing argument.

The reviewer's guide makes a big deal about using the 350D for water cooling, both with Corsair's products and with custom loops. There are five total fan mounts, and all of them support radiators: the top of the case features two 120mm/140mm mounts, the front of the case features another pair of 120mm/140mm mounts (and the 3.5" drive cage is removable), and then the rear of the case features a 120mm fan mount. What does surprise me is that Corsair opted not to include an additional fan mount beneath the drive cage, in the bottom of the case. It feels like a missed opportunity.

In and Around the Corsair Obsidian 350D
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  • ghm3 - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    I do, I got a 5.25" drive cage to stuff 6 SSDs into my Silverstone TJ08-E. Reply
  • CrimsonFury - Thursday, May 09, 2013 - link

    There are a few options if you are after a smaller mATX tower.

    Lian-Li do a very small matx tower. 1x optical bay, 7x HDD bays PSU is mounted over the motherboard (does limit tower heatsinks, but fits many mid sized heatsinks)

    The Silverstone TJ 08-E is another option, it does still have 2x optical bays, but it mounts the PSU up top instead of leaving radiator space, so its quite a bit shorter in height and depth than than the Corsair 350D. Has a 180mm intake and 120mm exhaust (they also do a variant with 2x120mm intake, but I forget the the model name). Still has room for 1x radiator up front is you sacrifice some of the HDD bays.
    Reply
  • Gunbuster - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    Does it come with a phantom tea cup like in the main photo? Reply
  • just4U - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    Did you guys notice? Even Dustin's wiring looked a little better. Damn Corsair is GOOD! (lol im kidding Dustin GREAT REVIEW!) I think your Bronze award was a little conservative, did you do that because you thought you might have gotten a little biased? Reply
  • Rolphus - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    This looks like a lovely case, but I'd have preferred to see it hit with a lot more thermal load in testing. I have a Silverstone TJ-08 with an i5-2500K (at 4GHz), and 2 GTX 580s in SLI. The case (just about) keeps up with that level of load, but I'd be interested in how well the Corsair does with something similar. Reply
  • scook9 - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    Great review! I have been very excited to see more about this case since the 900D came out. What you really need to do is compare this to the Antec Mini P180. I know it is discontinued but it was easily THE mATX case to build a system in back in its day (my server is still in mine as I grew to full ATX and a 700D). I do not even have a need for this case but want to just get one because haha Reply
  • mkygod - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    This is what is considered a Micro ATX case now? Good lord. It's actually a bit taller and wider than my Antec P150 full ATX case. Is the size increase the price you pay for having a case that supports water cooling? If that's the case, I want to see Corsair make some cases that aren't designed with watercooling in mind. Reply
  • antef - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    As I mentioned in the Fractal Design Define Mini review, I completely agree that cases like this should barely be considered "micro"-anything. They could be a lot smaller, and I feel like manufacturers are just afraid to because they think people want bigger everything. Then why even make a MicroATX case? Check out the SilverStone Precision PS07, it's only 14.7" tall, 15.75" deep, and 11.46 lbs. Can hold any size video card, 2 drives without the cage, a ton more with the cage, and plenty of spots for 120mm fans. I don't know why they need to make them any bigger. Reply
  • Jumpman23 - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    Does the optical bay include a face plate? It breaks the smoothness of the front view without a face plate to sit flush with the front cover. Reply
  • MadMan007 - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    I like this case, the layout and design decisions seem well-thought out and the front is attractive. It still includes 2 5.25" bays for those of us who use optical drives, for those who don't they allow for a radiator or 3.5" drives.

    The one shortcoming imo is the limited number of 3.5" bays. The 2.5" bay stack is a neat feature, but since it's completely removable using that space for 3.5" bays (which can obviously hold 2.5" drives as well) would give more options. It would make things very tight near the frint edge of a mATX board but it would still fit. With the low idle power draw of modern systems, using a main PC as file storage and serving makes more sense than it used to. If Corsair came out with an optional 3.5" rack to go where those 2.5" bays are the case would be even more flexible - add one, get 2 more 3.5" bays without blocking the intake fan, add 2 (for 4 drives) for maximum storage.
    Reply

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