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Reviewed by: Norman Tan [08.17.05]
Manufactured by: Ahanix



I must admit, I have mixed feelings about the software. To install it, one ran the driver install and then copied a folder from the CD-ROM. It would have been nice to just have a single setup file, but alas, no luck.

The LCD Smartie program works, but could be viewed as a little intimidating to users. Once you get the hang of it however, it is pretty easy to use and extremely configurable.

Ahanix has definitely been around for a while and along with Silverstone, they are among the top tier of HTPC case manufacturers. The build quality of the MCE601 was absolutely superb and the construction quality was without a doubt, the highest that I have ever seen. The case was laid out well and the optical drive cover was a very nice touch.

Because this case is aimed squarely for the HTPC crowd that is unlikely to change their gear very often, points are not deducted for that. However, there are several issues which prevent this case from getting a perfect score. Firstly, it would have been nice if the VFD used a USB input instead of the parallel port out back. Secondly, the lack of a 3.5" cover was a little perplexing. Yes, there is a cover on it, but what if someone wanted to use the USB ports? Finally, there is the issue of the software not being the most user friendly of things. A single installer would not be hard to program and would make things easier for the end user.

Update: Ahanix has since informed us that a USB VFD is indeed in the works and will be ready for September. It's great that they are taking feedback from users and improving upon their cases!

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  • Amazing build quality
  • Very well laid out

  • Parallel input instead of USB
  • Software installer non-existant
  • No 3.5" drive cover
  • Standard PSU = noise under stress
  • Pricey

Final Score: 90%