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Corsair 7000D Airflow and iCUE 7000X RGB

They don't come much bigger than Corsair's 7000D and iCUE 7000X RGB E-ATX cases. We ask if the 7000 Series is both big and clever, or too big to fail?

Why Corsair's e-ATX monoliths are both big and clever

 

If you’re in the market for a giant of a PC case, then you should look no further than the Corsair 7000 series. Bigger and better than the 5000 Series in many respects, these E-ATX cases dwarf the competition, making a dazzling, bold statement in terms of size – but also aesthetics.

In this review, we’re going to take a look at the Corsair iCUE 7000X and Corsair 7000D Airflow cases. Both have the features we have come to expect with Corsair – high quality builds with plenty of room and easy accessibility for components and customisation – and both have a raft of pros and cons.

 

Get 25% off a Corsair RM1000x PSU when bought with these Corsair 7000D or 7000X cases

 

Corsair 7000D AIRFLOW

Size Matters?

At first glance, you would have to wonder why Corsair have continued enhancing the size from the 4000D and the 5000D. It seems everyone else in the market is trying to go smaller, where Corsair seem to have their finger on the pulse when it comes to case real estate.

It begs the question: Why would you need an E-ATX?

Extended ATX computer cases are, of course, larger than regular ATX cases. You will see E-ATX cases being used by gamers, and often as servers, due to their capacity for larger motherboards, and the ease in which significant cooling i.e. water cooling can be installed.

As we can see from the image below (courtesy of Gamers Nexus), there’s a significant increase in size over the 5000D and even more so over the 4000D:

 

Gamers Nexus image of the Corsair 4000, 5000, and 7000 series cases

Image Courtesy of Gamers Nexus

 

The Airflow family of Corsair cases do not look out of place in a server room or a bedroom, and that is testament to Corsair’s inimitable ability to mix function and style. No matter how ambitious your case mod project, you will have all the room and options you need, and can rest assured the exterior of your case won’t let you down.

But herein lies the problem for some PC enthusiasts. Bigger means heavier. There’s no denying how cumbersome the case is, but at the same time – if you are purchasing the 7000D, it’s because you need the size. Weighing in at 18.7kg without a PSU, the 7000D will mean you’re definitely not skipping “arm day” if you have to shift it around.

 

Corsair 7000D Airflow with banana for scale

*banana for scale

 

Accessing The 7000D Airflow

For the most part, PC cases are built to allow access from both sides of the chassis, and manufacturers like Corsair try their best to ensure you’re not cutting your fingertips or have to mess with screwdrivers to get at your components.

The 7000D provides access to the interior by way of a hinged tempered glass panel and a hinged steel panel. These panels also come away if you either don’t have the space to open them, or you want unhindered access during a build.

The front panel is attached/detached using a ball and socket, which pops off for access to the front fans; the front panel also hides a mesh panel to diffuse the RGB lights in said fans.

Previously reviewers had complained that the steel housing for the front fans did not allow for easy upgrade from 120mm to 140mm, and this has been solved with the 7000D. 3x fans ship with the 7000D and they are biased when it comes to air direction, being placed at the top of the case and aiming at the CPU area of the motherboard.

The 3x 140mm fans that ship with the 7000D are Corsair AirGuide fans, with anti-vortex vanes for enhanced cooling. They do not, however, include RGB.

 

Side view of the Corsair iCUE 7000D Airflow

Image Courtesy of Corsair

 

The case is spacious in terms of added cooling and will house 4x 120mm fans or a radiator up to 480mm. Alternatively, you can choose a 3x 360mm or 2x 420mm radiator array.

 

Cooling space and fan options of the Corsair 7000D Airflow

Image Courtesy of Corsair

 

7000D Case Mod: Room With A View

In terms of how the 7000D stacks up against smaller ATX cases and motherboards, the difference is pretty visible:

 

Internal sizes and measurements of the Corsair 7000D Airflow

Image Courtesy of Corsair

 

Customisation with RGB fans, RGB water cooling and other methods will be visible through the front panel and glass side panel, with ample room for even the chunkiest of components.

A great example of the potential with the Corsair 7000D is the PC case mod Project Mirai, which is exceedingly nice to look at, and highly functional in terms of gear inside the rig:

 

 

Project Mirai Corsair 7000D PC Case Mod

 

The Provoked Prawn also created an RGB case mod which is a feast for the eyes:

 

Provoked Prawn Corsair 7000D PC Case Mod with RGB Lights displayed

 

With room for creativity, the 7000D offers plenty in terms of customisation, even if you’re not going for these all-out mods from bit-tech or The Provoked Prawn.

If you want to check out some of the best PC case mods of 2021 so far, check out our article here.

Colour

Much like most cases available now, you can have any colour you want, as long is its black or white.

 

Corsair 7000D Side by Side - Black and White Case Options

 

Personal preference, here – but according to the CCL system build team, RGB does seem to look cleaner with a white case, and black cases are more suited to an ‘aggressive’ customisation.

Cable Management

The 7000D (and 7000X) has excellent cable management, with a roomy 25mm of space between the side panel and main chassis backboard. Cables are tucked away in a hidden channel via a steel hinged trapdoor.

I/O Options

The USB panel includes the usual fayre, but you get plenty of connections, with 4x USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 Type C port, 3.5mm combo mic/headphone jack, a power button and a reset button. The 7000X also has the same front panel I/O options.

 

Front Panel IO Options for Corsair 7000D

 

Detailed Specs

  • Maximum GPU Length: 450 mm
  • Maximum PSU Length: 225 mm
  • Maximum CPU Cooler Height: 190 mm
  • Expansion Slots: 8 horizontal + 3 vertical
  • Case Drive Bays: (x6) 3.5in (x4) 2.5in
  • Form Factor: FULL TOWER
  • Case: Windowed Tempered Glass
  • Case Warranty: 2 Years
  • Color: BLACK or WHITE

 

  • Radiator Compatibility: 120mm, 140mm, 240mm, 280mm, 360mm, 420mm, 480mm
  • Case Front IO (4x) USB 3.0, (1x) USB 3.1 Type C, (1x) Audio in/out
  • Compatible Corsair Liquid Coolers: H55, H60, H75, H80i, H90, H100i, H105, H110i, H115i, H150i, H170i
  • Case Power Supply: ATX
  • Weight: 18.7lg
  • Height: 600 mm
  • Length: 550 mm
  • Width: 248 mm

Pros and Cons

The main pro and con for the case is its size and weight. As stated above, however, if you are looking to purchase a monolithic case, then you know what you’re getting into. The chassis is heavy, but that’s because it’s big. No surprises there. This aside, here are the pros & cons with the Corsair Airflow 7000D:

 

PROS CONS
Lots of room for customisation Premium price (£239.99)
Easy access interior via tool-free tempered glass side panel No RGB fans pre-installed (see Corsair iCUE 7000X below)
Perfect for ambitious mods PSU Not Included
Directed airflow (using AirGuide fans)  
3x 140mm Corsair AirGuide fans included (non-RGB) and PWM repeater  
Multiple I/O ports  
Separate fan controller to regulate fan speeds  
Perfect for air or water cooling  
Excellent storage options (6x combo 2.5in / 3.5in drive trays and 4x 2.5in SSD mounts)  
40% - 60% larger than standard midi-tower case  
Vertical GPU mount* (see below notes)  
Customizable windowed PSU shroud for further modding  
Excellent cable management with Corsair Rapidroute 25mm recess & hidden door/channel  

 

* Vertical GPU mounts are advised against, so please check before using this type of mount.

Corsair iCUE 7000X RGB

Size Isn’t Everything (It Just Helps)

The Corsair iCUE 7000X RGB is not just like its cousin - the 7000D - in size. As the name suggests, the 7000X model comes with 4x RGB fans and a few other valuable features to justify the price tag of almost £300.

We’ll get into the specifications a bit further in, but the highlights are – you can expect a similarly cavernous chassis space, an onboard RGB controller and AirGuide RGB fans pre-installed.

The 7000X is also a smidge heavier than the 7000D, weighing in at almost 20kg. This is to be expected, however, with the extra glass, PCB and lighting etc.

Accessing The 7000X RGB

Put simply, the same access panels and tool-free experience is to be had with the 7000X as the 7000D (above). There’s nothing new, here, other than extra glass panels - and there doesn’t need to be. The top and front of the case detach with ease, and the only thing you’ll need to worry about are finger marks on your beautiful tempered glass.

All of the 7000 Series design specs matter with the 7000X RGB, however, because right out of the box you can play with the 140mm AirGuide RGB fans, and enjoy the ease of access for fiddly connectors.

There are a few hardware differences in the 7000X, but access to the chassis remains the same.

7000X Case Mod: Big And Clever

The first thing you’ll notice is that the grill from the 7000D has been replaced with a tempered glass frontage, and the top is also made of the same high quality tempered glass. As Corsair says – “It’s ok to show off”. The glow from the internal RGB lighting will be displayed clearly from three angles, and whatever rainbow explosion you decide on will light up any room.

You can review how the 7000X stacks up as far as size and space in the 7000D article above, but where the 7000X truly differs is what you get in the box.

 

Corsair iCUE 7000X build with RGB lighting

 

You can immediately make use of the smart Corsair iCUE Commander Core XT Controller with the installed 4x 140mm ARGB fans (3x front, 1x rear); a PWM fan repeater is also supplied to enable RGB and fan speed control.

While some reviews have been less than favourable, and usually written as a direct comparison to the 7000D model, the 7000X is actually made for purpose. While the 7000D offers customisation from the moment you unbox the case, the 7000X is ready to go in terms of custom RGB colours, excellent cooling (with the 140mm AirGuide RGB fans), and easy installation of your components. This all comes in at less than a £60 upgrade over the 7000D.

Whilst Corsair tend to focus on the air cooling capabilities of the 7000X, the ability to install a giant water cooling system easily, with room for even the largest radiators, the case is perfect for a custom gaming pc build.

Practically speaking, if there is one thing that reviewers and modders have noticed so far, it is the Commander Core XT Controller being fitted directly below the processor on the chassis. This can be problematic for anyone who is installing a CPU cooler that required a mounting bracket fitted directly to the chassis. That said, a modder will quickly find the workaround is as simple as detaching and moving the XT Controller and attached wires.

Attack the acres of space inside with as much colour and pipework as you like, controlling everything from the intuitive Corsair iCUE system.

 

RGB Case Mod for 7000X by DaKrazyKid - Reddit.com

Courtesy: u/DaKrazyKid – Reddit.com

 

RGB Case mod by chem_eng_boi - Reddit.com

Courtesy: u/chem_eng_boi – Reddit.com

 

7000X RGB Specifications

With the same chassis and features as the lighter, lesser priced 7000D, the Corsair 7000X needs no hyperbole. Here are the specs:

  • Maximum GPU Length: 450 mm
  • Maximum PSU Length: 225 mm
  • Maximum CPU Cooler Height: 190 mm
  • Expansion Slots: 8 vertical + 3 horizontal
  • Case Drive Bays: (x6) 3.5in (x3) 2.5in
  • Form Factor: FULL TOWER
  • Case: Windowed Tempered Glass
  • Case Warranty: 2 Years
  • Color: BLACK or WHITE

 

  • Radiator Compatibility: 120mm, 140mm, 240mm, 280mm, 360mm, 420mm, 480mm
  • Case Front IO (4x) USB 3.0, (1x) USB 3.1 Type C, (1x) Audio in/out
  • Compatible Corsair Liquid Coolers: H55, H60, H75, H80i, H90, H100i, H105, H110i, H115i, H150i, H170i
  • Case Power Supply: ATX
  • Weight: 19.8kg
  • Height: 600 mm
  • Length: 550 mm
  • Width: 248 mm

Pros and Cons

The one pro worth highlighting is the ease in which you can get up and running with a custom-looking rig with the 7000X. Whilst you can upgrade various aspects of your build at a later date, having the ability to drop all of your components into a ready-lit case is a massive bonus for those who just want to get going as quickly as possible. The onboard XT Controller is also a massive plus, too. There is no aftermarket controllers needed and you will be able to configure your RGB with the Corsair iCUE software right out of the box.

 

PROS CONS
3x 140mm Corsair AirGuide ARGB LED (addressable RGB) fans included and PWM repeater + 1x 140mm Rear ARGB LED fan Premium price (£299.99)
Lots of room for customisation PSU Not Included
Easy access interior via tool-free tempered glass side panel  
Perfect for ambitious mods  
Directed airflow (using AirGuide fans)  
Multiple I/O ports  
Separate fan controller to regulate fan speeds  
Perfect for air or water cooling  
Excellent storage options (6x combo 2.5in / 3.5in drive trays and 4x 2.5in SSD mounts)  
40% - 60% larger than standard midi-tower case  
Vertical GPU mount  
Customizable windowed PSU shroud for further modding  
Excellent cable management with Corsair Rapidroute 25mm recess & hidden door/channel  

 

7000D and 7000X Summary

The two options you have got with these cases offer you a “readymade” E-ATX RGB case and a customisable case. The difference in price (around £60) is negligible when you consider the 4x 140mm AirGuide RGB fans that come with the 7000X are high quality and durable fans. You also get the RGB controller to boot.

I would say that the choice is based on your immediate customisation needs. If you want to start putting in third party RGB lighting, then the price point of the 7000D makes sense. If you want the added benefit of the XT Controller, and will just bin the supplied RGB fans, and go with the 7000X. The choice is yours.

Pound for pound, the 7000 Series from Corsair truly dominate the competition in size, features and build quality. They have a price tag that implies quality, and Corsair have not let their customers down here. They have improved on each case from the 4000 Series, listening to their critics, fans and customers, to a point where they expect no negative reviews with their E-ATX cases. While there are some negative comments out there, they are very small niggles rather than major impairments in what are considered by most as exceptional cases. Issues like the XT Controller positioning in the 7000X, and the weight/size in both of these absolute units are not deal breakers by any stretch of the imagination.

With Corsair’s 7000 Series you can expect quality and a solid build. You can also expect cavernous space for your dream gaming PC, a massive server build or even take the case to the extremes with a full-on PC case mod. The 7000D and 7000X seemingly were built with specifications to handle anything you throw at it.