Antec 1200 vs CM HAF 932 vs CM HAF 922 vs CM Storm Sniper
The Antec 1200 and CM HAF 932 are usually compared, while the Storm Sniper is usually left out. In this thread I'll compare the CM HAF 932, the new CM HAF 922, CM Storm Sniper, and Antec 1200.
All four cases are made of steel and plastic. The HAF 932, HAF 922, and Storm Sniper have very tough paint jobs, immune to scratches and finger prints. This is not true of the Antec 1200. The Antec 1200 is the loudest of them all, and the Storm Sniper is the quietest. The Storm Sniper has a fan controller for the 200mm fans, while the Antec 1200 has them for all of the fans. However if you dumb down the noise on the Antec 1200 so it is as silent as one of the other cases, cooling won't be nearly as good since the fans are only 120mm (except for the top 200mm).
The Antec 1200 comes with three 120mm blue LED front intake fans. All fans have a switch to control the speed. These three are fitted behind little brackets which have a dust filter. Sadly you have to unscrew each and every one of these to get to them. There are only three 5.25" drive bays at the top. Above that you have your power button/reset button, HDD/power LEDs, only two USB 2.0 ports, and an external SATA port. No firewire port.
The HAF 932 has a 230mm red LED front intake fan without a dust filter. There are six ventilated 5.25" slots which have no dust filters, but come out very easily. Above those are four USB 2.0 ports, a firewire port, external SATA port, audio/mic jacks, and power/HDD LED which is very bright blue.
The HAF 922 features five ventilated 5.25" drive bays, each of them has a dust filter. The bottom drive bay has a 5.25" to 3.5" drive bay adapter so you can use external 3.5" devices. Below these is a 200mm red LED intake fan. This cover has a dust filter as well. However COOLER MASTER cheaped out on the front I/O panel, there are only two USB 2.0 ports, headphone jack, microphone jack, and an external Serial-ATA port. Same as the Antec 1200 but placed in a slightly different area.
The Storm Sniper has a 200mm blue LED front intake fan, thankfully the front bezel comes off with a simple tug and there is a dust filter. There are five ventilated 5.25" drive bays which also have dust filters. The bottom one features a 5.25" to 3.5" adapter.
The rear of both CM cases as well as the inside is unfinished steel. I'm fine with this on the HAF 932 and 922, but an all black theme would go great with the Storm Sniper in my opinion. The Antec 1200 on the other hand is all black.
The rear of the Antec 1200 features dual 120mm blue LED exhaust fans, which are the same as the ones in the front. There is a fan controller too, nice feature. Sadly the rear uses punched out mesh holes and no removable fan grill for easier mounting of external radiators. A 240 radiator can fit back here which is a plus. Beneath those are the 7 ventilated expansion slots, extra ventilation, and two rubberized slots for water cooling tubes. The PSU is mounted at the bottom.
The HAF 932 features two PSU mounts - one on the top and one at the bottom. The top one has two rubberized holes for water cooling. Below is a 140mm exhaust fan. There are mounts for a 120mm exhaust fan. A 140mm/120mm radiator can fit here, but sadly there is no removable fan grill for external radiators. Below this is extra ventilation and 7 ventilated expansion slots. At the bottom is the primary PSU mount.
The rear of the HAF 922 is kind of like the Storm Sniper. It features two rubberized holes for a water cooling system's tubes to pass through, 120mm exhaust fan (which can be replaced by a 92mm or 80mm exhaust fan) which sadly has no removable fan grill, 7 expansion slots, which for some reason are not ventilated, an eighth vertical expansion slot, and the PSU mount. The expansion slots should have been ventilated and instead of the eighth expansion slot there should have been extra ventilation, to be more like the HAF 932.
The rear of the Storm Sniper has some unique features. At the top there are two rubberized slots for water cooling tubes. Below that is the 120mm exhaust fan. There are mounts for a 92mm exhaust fan or 80mm, but again, no removable fan grill. Below that are seven ventilated expansion slots and an eight vertical one. This can be used for cable routing or for CPU coolers/cathodes/fans that have a switch which plugs into an expansion slot. Below this is a PSU mount and two additional holes for water cooling tubes. The rubber coverings are included with the case.
The top of the Antec 1200 has a 200mm blue LED exhaust fan, nothing else really. The buttons/ports I mentioned earlier are in between the front and top of the case.
The top of the HAF 932 has several cool features. The power button and reset button are placed here, woohoo if you put the case in the floor (which is not suggested due to the lack of dust filters). Behind these is a liquid coolant fillport, a rare feature on a case. Further behind is a 230mm exhaust fan, which can be replaced by dual 120mm exhaust fans or a 240 radiator.
The top of the HAF 922 has several unique features. It has the power/HDD LED, which glows blue and is behind a smoked cover so it isn't too bright. Behind this is the power button, reset button, and a button to enable/disable the red LED on the front 200mm fan. This is just like the CM Storm Scout case. Behind this is a 200mm exhaust fan which can be replaced by two 120mm exhaust fans or a 240 radiator (internal).
The top of the Storm Sniper has some innovative features as well. There is a rather large power button, and a small reset button. Next to these is an onboard fan controller! Very nice feature. You can also push it in to disable the LEDs on the 200mm fans, another great feature. Next to this is an external SATA port, audio/mic jack, HDD LED, power LED, four USB 2.0 ports, and a firewire port. There are integral carrying handles since this case was meant for LAN parties, as well as a 200mm blue LED exhaust fan, which can be replaced by two 120mm exhaust fans or a 240 radiator.
The side of the Antec 1200 features a window an a slot for an optional 120mm side intake fan. There is a dust filter positioned here as well.
The HAF 932 has lots of things on the left side panel. There is a large meshed area with a 230mm intake fan behind it. There are also mounts for four 120mm intake fans, but this would cause a lot of noise. There are no dust filters here. There is extra ventilation to the right of the mesh, which reminds me of a locker. Above that is an HAF logo (High Air Flow) and a glass window. The right side has the same locker-like style, but this side panel is slightly extruded leaving more space for cable management.
Both sides of the HAF 922 are extruded. The left side panel features ventilation without a dust filter. A 200mm side intake fan can be mounted, or two 120mm intake fans. I feel a 200mm side intake fan should have been included. The other side has the same design.
The Storm Sniper features extruded side panels for lots of space, and a large mesh area. Thankfully, the entire mesh is coated with an unremovable dust filter. There are no side intake fans here. Only the HAF 932 comes with a side intake fan. However there are mounts for dual 120mm intake fans or a 200mm side intake fan. I feel a 200mm side intake fan should have been included. The right side panel features a CM Storm logo and like I said before, it is extruded, meaning more space to work with.
The Antec 1200 features twelve front drive bays. These use your typical thumb screw design while the expansion slots use normal screws. While this case is pretty tall to accommodate for the second 120mm rear exhaust fan, it is not very long at all, therefore this won't be as easy to work in. There are cut outs in the mainboard tray for cable management, sadly these are rather small. There is no bottom ventilation, so your PSU will be forced to sit with the fan facing up, taking in the mixture of warm and cool air around the case.
The inside of the HAF 932 is much more spacious. It features six optical drive bays which use a button mechanism. Push once to lock, push again to unlock. This system is very easy and is not notoriously unstable. There is a bit of play but no cause for concern. There are five removable hard drive racks which make HDD installation very simple. Simply pull out one of the racks, fit it around the HDD making sure the pins line up (it is made of bendable plastic), and slide it back in. Thanks to the rubber pins the hard drives won't vibrate. It holds by itself pretty sturdy. Just like the optical drives you can use a screw to further secure them, but this is not really necessary.
You can also use a bottom 120mm intake fan, but again, there is no dust filter. Long power supplies will cover this area up. If you wish, you can install the PSU at the top (sacrificing the top 230mm exhaust fan) and install up to two 120mm bottom intake fans. Either way the PSU can get proper ventilation, thanks to the ventilation at the bottom and top of the chassis.
Cable management is even better in this case thanks to the larger cut outs, especially behind the optical drive bay. There is also a cut out behind where the CPU would be on the motherboard. This is so you can access back plates your CPU cooler/water block may have, so you won't have to remove the motherboard to install/remove or replace your CPU cooler/water block. This is a great feature and an enormous time saver.
The HAF 932 uses tool free expansion slots. The plastic mechanism locks over the card to hold it in place. It does leave a bit of play in the video cards, but you can use an extra screw to secure the card. I prefer thumbscrews which none of these cases have here.
The HAF 922 features rubber feet just like the other cases, as well as two ventilation holes, which both the CM HAF 932 and Storm Sniper have. Unlike the HAF 932, the HAF 922 has the bottom vents spaced out more so you can have a long PSU and still use an optional 140mm or 120mm bottom intake fan. No dust filters are included for the bottom ventilation.
The inside of the HAF 922 is just like the Storm Sniper below. It features a cut out so you can access any CPU cooler or water block's backplate without removing the motherboard. This is an enormous time saver and an excellent feature. There are cable management cut outs, and the motherboard tray is the only solid part of that side of the case, the rest has been removed, so cable management will be very easy. It has five tool less 5.25" mounts which use the button design like on the other two CM cases. Push once to lock, push again to unlock. An additional screw can be used to secure the drive. It also uses removable HDD racks which have rubberized pins to stop vibrations. An additional screw can be used to secure the HDD to the cage.
As I said before, the expansion slots aren't ventilated on the HAF 922. I don't know why they were made solid steel like on the older STACKER cases and Cosmos 1000, but thankfully they use thumbscrews, which are tool free and very sturdy. These hold better than the plastic clips the other CM cases here use and are easier to work with than screws like on the Antec 1200.
As I said earlier, the bottom of the HAF 922 has no dust filters. It has two rubber strips to keep the PSU from vibrating. Dust filters should be on the bottom, this is most vital. If your case is placed on the floor it will act as a vacuum cleaner.
Even though the Storm Sniper is advertised as a mid tower chassis, it is more spacious and easier to work in than the Antec 1200. It is only smaller in height. The Storm Sniper uses the same tool free 3.5" and 5.25" bays that the HAF 932 uses. I like these designs. This case can hold 5 optical drives and five hard drives. It uses the same tool free clips on the expansion slots.
A bottom 140mm or 120mm intake fan can be placed, and thankfully there is a dust filter. There is no dust filter for the PSU intake though, but at least there is an intake so it doesn't take the air from the case. There is a cut out for CPU coolers/water blocks just like on the HAF 932. The entire back of the case is cut out, except for the mainboard tray, leaving you loads of empty space for cables. Thanks to the extruded side panels, cable management is the best in this case.
When completed, as you can see there is not much space in the Antec 1200.
The HAF 932 on the other hand has plenty of space. However the Corsair HX1000 power supply shown in this picture is very long, thus blocking the optional bottom 120mm intake fan.
The HAF 922 is longer than the HAF 932 and Antec 1200, but not as high. Remember this case is advertised as a mid tower case, so is the Storm Sniper. Both of these cases are much larger than the Antec 1200, except for height. Cable management potential is the best in this case and the Storm Sniper.
The Storm Sniper actually has more depth space than both the HAF 932 and Antec 1200, but height is less. This is not even an issue, most users won't use two power supplies or need an extra rear exhaust fan. After all, this is advertised as a mid tower case. Sadly the owner of this PC didn't clean up the cables, as you saw earlier the Storm Sniper and HAF 922 has the best potential cable management features.
Overall, I would say the HAF 932, HAF 922 and Storm Sniper come far ahead, and beat each other out in several areas. They have some cool features the others don't, such as the built in liquid coolant fillport on the HAF 932 and the barrage of fan options. The HAF 922 has a button to control the red LED on the front 200mm fan, as well as thumbscrews on the expansion slots. The Storm Sniper has the fan controller/LED controller on the Storm Sniper, carry handles, and an eighth vertical expansion slot. The Storm Sniper definitely takes the crown if you plan on moving it around a lot. The integral carry handles and extra security (such as the eighth expansion slot and the ability to lock your side panel to the case) make it a winner for public affairs.
Antec 1200 = ~$160
HAF 932 = ~$150
HAF 922 = ~$130
Storm Sniper = ~$150
The HAF 922 and Storm Sniper are very similar, the only differences other than looks are the integral carrying handles on the Storm Sniper, more ventilation on the side, dust filter on the side, dust filter for optional bottom 140mm/120mm intake fan, ventilated expansion slots with tool free plastic clips, and the top I/O panel (more ports on the Storm Sniper). The Storm Sniper has the best feet, they can be turned sideways for greater stability and can be replaced by the included normal rubberized feet.
CM HAF 932
CM HAF 922
CM Storm Sniper