When Cooler Master released its 690 chassis over two years ago, we’re doubtful that even it could have predicted just how well-received it was going to be. It did a lot right in terms of design and function, and with the 690 II, those two factors are pushed even further. The result? The best $100 chassis we’ve ever looked at, bar none.
I was not quite sure what to expect when I first pulled the 690 II out of the box. I have made it no secret that I am no fan of sequels. Building a new product and basing it upon an older, yet highly successful product, is most definitely a recipe for disaster. It is far too easy to just make a few small changes and slap a new price on the box and call it a day. Thankfully for all of us, Cooler Master not only reworked every aspect of the original, they did it effectively and delivered an outstanding piece.
With a solid home run performance, Cooler Master has once again delivered a great product for a great price. Since I have yet to mention that price in my review, I will let you in on it now: $99US for the Advanced model. That’s right, $99. This is one hell of a chassis for that price point. Not only do you get a plethora of fans, you get the external SATA dock as well as a complement of hardware. Looking around at what the competition offers for the same money reveals that once again the market is shifting and we the consumer are going to be treated to more value for our dollar.
Cooling performance is outstanding, and the lack of noise while delivering this is sweet music to the ears. Adding into this mix is the amount of flexibility the various mounting systems for cooling devices. With the ability to mount up to seven fans, as well as opening up avenues for internal water cooling radiators, it just adds more and more positives. The bar has certainly been moved up more than a peg in the mid-size chassis class.
Now, I know there are people out there that have read this review and are questioning the lack of flaws. I too had to check and recheck my notes and data as I had nothing written down that seemed to point to a defect in design or workmanship. This is no mistake. While no product is perfect, the 690 II has delivered on every point it set out to make and cannot be denied. I will boldly declare this chassis the grand slam home-run that I have not had pass through my hands in my years of testing. At this price point, if you are building a new PC there is simply no better chassis to use in my opinion.
I wholeheartedly award our Editor’s Choice award to the 690 II Advanced. Great job, Cooler Master, you truly deserve it for this release.
Cooler Master 690 II Advanced Chassis
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