While I think I’d recommend using the screw option on the PCI brackets with heavier GPUs, otherwise the Tattoo is pretty damn strong. Side panels would certainly take an low level impact if dropped and the frame itself is strong enough to protect your internal hardware without much trouble at all.
Some of the front panel drive bay covers are a little loose and would likely come away if the case was knocking about in the back of a car for example. This doesn’t matter that much, but I think they could do with being a bit sturdier.
The cooling setup in the Tattoo is reasonably well fleshed out. At the front there’s a 14cm intake fan, with a 12cm exhaust at the rear and of course the reversable 14cm on the roof. This is about the middle ground for stock cooling and sits nicely in the performance vs noise spectrum; in that the number and size of fans is sufficient to keep thing cool, while not being so dominating that the noise output from their collective spinning is annoyingly loud.
When at idle levels of operation, you can barely here the three stock fans as they spin away.
There isn’t much room for air expansion with your only real option to somehow jury rig another fan behind the 5 1/4″ drive bays. However, Cubitek have taken into the consideration that some enthusiasts enjoy a bit of water cooling, so they’ve provided contingencies. Both the rear and top mounted fans feature space for small scale, single radiators allowing for internal or external WC setups if wanted.
Cable management is also handled well in this case. 99% of the interior has nice rounded edges to prevent shearing and there’s lots of routing holes to the rear of the backing plate, an area that offers a reasonable ammount of space for your excess cabling.On top of this, Cubitek have been nice enough to pre-arrange the front I/O panel cables behind the motherboard tray, keeping things tidy before you’ve even got started which is nice to see.
There are three tooless mechanims found in this case. The first I mentioned earlier, the PCI brackets. These do a pretty good job of holding things in place, but they arn’t massively strong. I’d be a little worried if you had a weighty dual chip card with even heavier cooler in there. For that I’d recommend using the extra support of a screw.
The HDD bays are nicely simple, they work on a pressure formula in that there isn’t room for the drive to fall out of the runners and it therefore can’t come away from its housing without serious effort; or the pre-ordained method of removing them. The same could be said for the optical drives, where the locking mechanism holds them very firmly indeed; someone needs to come up with a method like this for PCI bracket clips.
Currently only available to order from European dealers, the Cubitek Tattoo’s different versions come in slightly varying prices. However the one we viewed today will run you the equivalent of around £60.