Here's the spec:
5.25" Drive Bay:
3.5" Drive Bay:
2.5" Drive Bay:
Steel, Reinforced Plastic
382(W) x 105(H) x 350(D)mm
1x Slim Optical
2x USB 3.0, 1x Mic, 1x Audio
3x 120mm Intake slots (no fans)
SFX, SFX-L (future form factor)
330mm(L) x 149mm(H) Graphics cards, 83mm CPU Coolers
SilverStone are one of many companies know for investing money into designing revolutionary case interiors and then using them and adapting them in multiple case designs. This ML07 case has an interior taken from their RVZ01 Raven series gaming case, yes a gaming case. Why am I mentioning this when I should be covering the exterior? Well you need to keep in mind that the Exterior is going to be the main defining feature of this product, so if you don't like the exterior design but like the interior, SilverStone will probably have plenty more options for you to choose from if not now, in the future. See the gallery to the right for the main exterior photos.
As you can see from the specification and the gallery photos, the ML07 comes with a slot loading optical drive bay, two USB 3.0 ports and your standard microphone and headphone jacks. As a case orientated more towards the HTPC market, using a slot loading drive bay is potentially risky as quite a few slot loading optical drives are exceptionally loud, the last thing you want for this purpose. Having never reviewed SilverStone's own SL optical drives I can't comment on theirs but they seem confident enough about using slot loading drive bays in their cases so who knows. I do know though that SL drive bays are on another level when it comes to how they look compared to your standard 5.25".
A new design I haven't seen before, comes on the fan grills. They have quite an edgy and cool design that isn't uniform at all. Maybe this is better for airflow? maybe it's just awesome and helps detract from the fact the case is just that, a case. It reminds me more of those 'super cool' case designs you see on those overpriced branded 'gaming pc's than what you would find on a case this price, I like that its different.
They've been extremely well placed as well, one 120mm fan slot above the motherboard tray for a choice of fan cooler optional combo's and then two more on the underside of the case below where the graphics card will be. Is this the best design possible for maximising cooling potential and also minimising dust? well maybe if they had remembered dust filters on the top slot.
We also find a small 80mm sized fan grill with no mounting holes, just below where the power supply will be on the underside of the case. This is reminiscent of Silverstones SFX power supplies and that is because that is exactly what they expect you to be putting in this case. You'll find this lines up better with their ST45SF-G than their ST45SF and ST30SF power supplies.
So we've covered the fact this case has very well designed cooling but what makes it a proper gaming case? what makes it as easy to use as I've been saying? The answer is this, a single combo cage that houses your optical drive, two 2.5" hard drive/SSD's and on top of all that, a graphics card of up thirteen inches!!!
Not only that but because the graphics card is housed with in it using a riser card, the entire
On to the power supply cage, it removes via four screws and is designed to take SilverStones upcoming SFX-L form factor power supplies which are 30mm longer than standard SFX. What does this mean for users now? well with 180mm of power supply clearance for todays 100mm power supplies, you get a massive 80mm of space to work with for tying up unused PSU cables, tying back too long cables and in general, have a place to store the clutter. In such a small case this is a godsend and with SilverStone planning for the future it means that you have to worry a little less when building your system because you can sit comfortably knowing that your in good hands.
On top of the power supply cage is your only 3.5" hard drive mount, another confusing place to put the hard drive but in such a compact system it seems the only possible place. I feel like it just looks wrong though and that it would be better being orientated towards the motherboard tray where its cables actually need to go, seems like common sense to me.
There is also ventilation all the way along both the left and right sides as well as the back of the case, because of this I recommend using all the three 120mm fan mounts as intakes with dust filters to keep dust out. Now onto my conclusion!
I am a massive fan of the interior design the ML07 brings to the table, offering all of the features needed for this generations high end gaming system. It allows for up to 13" graphics cards and along with SilverStones advancements in SFX power supplies and motherboard advancements in onboard network and audio chips all you need is the single expansion slot capable of a dual GPU card. We even have the extensive cooling options capable of handling such a system too making the ML07 a great choice for people with limited available space who want a powerful PC.
Unfortunately in my opinion the exterior design is where we have to leave the positive thoughts behind and really discuss the negatives. The brushed aluminium looking plastic isn't something I ever feel is going to be popular, at least not with case fronts that require a lot of it, it is something that should be left for the little touches and accents. Maybe the case would have actually looked better with the brushed aluminium look and the matte look being reversed on the case. Not only am I not a huge fan of the look but SilverStone are practically known as the king of proper Aluminium designs and a case with an interior of this standard deserves a proper exterior design similar to the quality of the SG08-Lite, Even Cooler Masters cheaper Elite 120 had a partly metal front.
I'm not one to have unrealistic expectations though, the ML07 and its brother the RVZ01 have clearly had serious time and therefore money spent on them designing this interior and that shouldn't go unnoticed. As practically all the negatives I have on the ML07 have spawned from my own subjective views, the ML07 poses a serious threat to other cases in it's market and if you fancy the design of the ML07 then maybe this is the case for you. I won't be giving this case an Editors choice award on this one as it's not the case for me but knowing SilverStone's tactic of re-using good interiors and offering multiple exterior designs (which is exactly what the ML07 is), if they came back to me with a version that has a front panel comparable to their older Grandia series cases, I think I would be in love and we would see a Silver Award case easily, the ML07 sadly missed out on this award by only one point but still solidly receiving our Bronze Award.
Features & Compatibility:
Aesthetics & Packaging:
Value For Money: