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Hiper's Osiris enclosure

The lord of the dead takes a stab at case design

Manufacturer Hiper Group
Model Osiris
Price (Street) $170
Availability Now

Egyptian deities probably aren't a realm to which PC enthusiasts give much thought when picking out components, but for whatever reason, the Hiper Group has decided that's the appropriate theme for its new line of cases. Considering we've seen everything from the companion cube from Portal to a simple shoebox used as inspiration for the protection and containment of a PC's guts, we're just going to have to go along and make puns involving mummies and pyramids for a few pages while examining this fine-looking, all-aluminum, multiple-120mm-fan-wielding ATX case known as the Osiris.

Hiper's first case in the same line (and first case at all) was called the Anubis, and it gave us a glimpse of the potential at the Hiper Group. Built exclusively from aluminum and focusing on airflow, the Anubis was a rather impressive entrance into the market. With the Osiris, Hiper has taken all the criticism and feedback from the Anubis and gone back to the drawing board to optimize modularity and simplify design. The result is a good example of form following function—and a rather spiffy case, to boot.

The exterior
Aesthetically, there isn't much about the Osiris that we haven't seen before. But the elements do come together in a way that will certainly please most enthusiasts.

The black version is as dark as the tombs of Tutankhamun

Like the Cosmos we've praised so much and many other popular cases released recently, the Osiris keeps flair to a minimum and uses small elements of flash to upgrade its appearance from boring to classy. Chrome-colored piping outlines the 120mm fan intake at the bottom of the front panel, beneath the five-high 5.25" drive rack. The brushed aluminum comes in your choice of anodized black or silver, both of which have a deeply-grooved, brushed finish. Our black unit has a particularly industrial flair.

The Osiris, head on

Hiper includes stealthy drive bay doors that can hide optical drives that might otherwise disrupt the Osiris' all-black exterior. In our experience, these bay covers only work well with the most 'standard' of optical drive configurations (the eject button layout can be tricky to match just right). If the bay covers don't work with your burner of choice, you can always remove them and just put up with looking at the bezel of the optical drive itself.

In an interesting twist, the Osiris has an honest-to-goodness accurate hieroglyphic inscription of its name in the top right corner of the front bezel. Check it out in the picture below:

At first we thought the symbol might mean 'I pray to stealth bombers and get crushed by falling pianos'
Front/top view

Moving to the case's top plate, we find one more 120mm fan positioned toward the back, providing extra exhaust from the hottest area of the interior. The port cluster is up top, as well—a design decision we're seeing more and more with taller towers, which makes sense since we figure most people don't like having cases this large taking up a significant portion of their desk. For the Osiris, it's almost imperative you keep the case on the ground. Not only is the port cluster up top, but the power and reset buttons are too, along with the HDD activity and power LEDs.

The blingy port cluster

The port and button area is set off from the rest of the top panel on a separate piece of aluminum, and I rather like the effect. The lack of an outline doesn't exactly match the rest of the styling scheme, but the addition of the bolts at the corners gives the panel the same industrial look as the front of the case. Here we see the only mention of the manufacturer anywhere on the unit, a welcome change from displaying brand logos all over the place. We also find an eSATA port, instead of the usual Firewire plug, and a trio of audio hookups, instead of the usual headphone and mic jacks. It's a shame the USB ports are so close together, though. I've noticed that even the smallest of USB flash drives tends to keep other devices from plugging in easily when the ports are crammed right next to each other.

A ventilation-prohibitive mesh?

Moving down to the side, we encounter the first truly unique aspect to the Osiris. Instead of using a steel mesh for ventilation and EMF protection or a typical clear acrylic window for showing off the internals while keeping out dust, Hiper has employed both materials in a dust-free, mesh-looking side panel. At first, we were a bit skeptical of the approach, but using multiple materials in case panels seems to be rather commonplace now. This particular arrangement gains the benefit of some visibility into the guts while avoiding the problems associated with dust entering the computer from locations other than the fan intakes.

Our left side panel was dinged up a bit by the shipping company

Before we jump inside, let's take a quick look at the back of the Osiris. Note first how the increasingly popular bottom-mounted power supply bay makes an appearance, and also that we can already see how the bay is designed to supply the PSU with ample cool air. A filtered intake in the case's bottom plate allows even largest of PSU fans to draw all the cool air they need from directly outside the case rather than having to make do with warm air that's already flowed over hard drives, the processor, or other internal components. From here, we can also see hose holes for water-cooling rigs and an exhaust grill capable of supporting multiple fan sizes.

Unfortunately, this shot also reveals some damage that our review unit incurred during transit. There's no doubt in my mind that the side panel would fit fine if the case hadn't been manhandled, because the right side panel is the same size and uses the same mechanisms, and it sits perfectly flush.

Our right side panel was fine, and the hinges and latches worked well

As it arrived, the Osiris' frame was bent just out of square enough to keep the left side panel from fitting properly. The latches at the top were both in good working order, but one of the hinges on the bottom was broken off, further preventing the side panel from staying put.