Silverstone Kublai KL05B-W Chassis Review

Today we will be looking at one of Silverstone’s Kublai Series chassis. The Kublai Series offers performance tower cases which are capable of accommodating enthusiast level builds such as those with multiple graphics card and watercooling. Let us see how well will Silverstone’s Kublai KL05B-W ATX tower chassis do with today’s typical enthusiast build.

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Features

  • Interference-free design for mounting 240mm or 280mm radiator
  • Highly flexible storage accommodation of up to 8 or 11 drives*
  • Quick access filters for easy cleaning
  • Motherboard back plate opening for quick CPU cooler assembly
  • Mesh front panel intake maximizes airflow with side window for viewing system innardsAll black painted interior for stylish look

Specifications

  • Model: SST-KL05B-W
  • Material: Mesh front panel, steel body
  • Motherboard: ATX, Micro-ATX
  • Drive bays:
    • External – 2 x 5.25″
    • Internal – 6 x 3.5″ or 2.5″ , 2 x 2.5″
  • Cooling:
    • Front – 2 x 120mm/140mm fan slot (1 x 120mm intake fan included)
    • Rear – 120mm fan slot x 1
    • Side – None
    • Top – 120mm / 140mm fan slot x 2
    • Bottom – 120mm fan slot x 2
    • Internal – None
  • Expansion Slot: 8
  • Front I/O Port: 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x Audio, 1 x MIC
  • Power Supply: Optional Standard PS2(ATX)
  • Expansion Card: Compatible up to 16”, 11” with optional drive cage (sold separately) installed
  • Limitation of CPU cooler: 165mm
  • Limitation of PSU: 225mm
  • Net Weight: 6.9Kg
  • Dimension: 200mm (W) x 525mm (H) x 494mm (D), 52 liters
  • Extra: Support Kensington locks

Official Product Page

Closer Look – Exterior: Kublai KL05B-W

 

 

The Kublai KL05B-W comes in a typical cardboard box packaging. You can read the features and a diagram of the chassis around the box.

The chassis itself is mostly black aluminum with a mesh front panel. The top is a plastic panel with mesh holes for ventilation. You can also see the huge clear window cutout on the left-face side panel.

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The front mesh hides two 120mm fan mounting locations. The chassis comes in with one 120mm blue LED fan installed in the front. The top of the front panel hosts the switches, audio ports and two USB 3.0 ports.

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The rear looks like a typical tower chassis; PSU bay at the bottom, 8 PCIe extension slots, 2 watercooling tubing holes on the right and 1 120mm fan mounting hole. You can also see the two thumb screws that lock the top panel in place.

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At the bottom, the case feet are plastic and there’s a huge filter as well that covers the PSU intake as well as two more 120mm fan mounting places which you’ll have a better look later when we take a look at the exteriors of the chassis.

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The top panel is removable and the rear end of it is littered with holes for ventilation. Beneath it are two 120mm fan mounting holes where you can also place a 240mm radiator for watercooling.

Closer Look – Interior: Kublai KL05B-W

 

Removing the top and front panels is very easy. There’s a latch that needs to be pressed to release the front panel while the top panel is secured by two visible thumb screws.

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Removing all the panels, installing hardware on the KL05B-W is very easy. The chassis weighs around 5 kilograms with all the panels removed which I find very lightweight for a chassis its size. From here, you can see the drive cages in front of the case, two 5.25″ bays at the top and a very huge motherboard cutout for easy access on the back of the motherboard for CPU cooler installation.

As mentioned earlier, the drive cages are removable and they can also go on top of the drive cage cavity, beneath the 5.25″ drive bays. The module where the cages go into can also be removed revealing the two 120mm fan mounting places at the bottom of the chassis. A 240mm radiator can also fit the bottom of the chassis.

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Here’s how the KL05B-W look without all the drive cages. This exposes the two options for 240mm radiator placements either at the front or at the bottom of the case.

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Here’s a look at the back of the chassis. You can find two 2.5″ drive mounting locations behind the motherboard area.

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The space behind the chassis is quite challenging with only 1.5cm.

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Here’s a look at the two 120mm fan mounting places on the top of the chassis. It can also accommodate two 140mm fans.

Build and Installation – Kublai KL05B-W

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First thing that I noticed with the KL05B-W as I was building with it are the screws that go with the standoff screws. It’s the larger screws that go with it.

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There’s a lavish space on top of the motherboard area and cable routing holes near the typical location of the 8-pin motherboard power sockets. Even if you install the top fans inside the chassis, it will have room to accommodate such orientation of the fans.

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Notice that small round hole directly on top of the cable routing hole, I believe those are routing holes for the top fan’s cables. Unfortunately they are too small to fit in the 4-pin PWM molex headers of the EKWB Vardar fans I used so I routed it elsewhere. Hence, you can use the holes to route the cable there but you need to remove the pin headers of the fan cable first and put it back after routing the cable there. I think it would a whole lot easier if Silverstone made those holes larger. There are ten of these holes on top, five on each side and I cannot think of any purpose of it other than cable routing holes.

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The bottom is quite spacious when the drive cages are removed. It will direct the air flow to the hardware components without it.

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Here’s a look at our build from the left-face of the chassis.

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At the back, it looks a bit tight but with careful cable management you can fairly do a neat build even with only 1.5cm of space.

 

 

Here’s a look at our final build. It’s a typical enthusiast build geared towards aircooling. The build used the following hardware below:

  • Motherboard: MSI 970 Gaming
  • Processor: AMD Vishera FX-8370 4.0 Ghz
  • CPU Cooler: Cryorig H7 Cooler
  • Memory: Kingston HyperX T1 2400Mhz 8GB
  • Graphics Card: Gigabyte GTX 770 OC
  • Power Supply: Be Quiet! Dark Power Pro 10 850w
  • Drives: OCZ Vector 150 120GB 2.5″ SSD, Western Digital 1TB Caviar Blue 3.5″ HDD
  • Cooling:
    • Front: 2 x Noiseblocker NB-Multiframe M12-P
    • Rear: 1 x EKWB Vardar F3-120
    • Top: 2 x EKWB Vardar F3-120

CONCLUSION

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The Silverstone Kublai KL05B-W chassis is a very capable ATX tower chassis, able to house entry-level to enthusiast-level builds. The windowed side panel is a huge plus for enthusiast builders nowadays to show off their prized hardware inside. Let us summarize our experience with the Kublai KL05B-W ATX chassis below:

Build Quality: The KL05B-W is lightweight compared to cases of the same category from Corsair and NZXT but there’s no hint of structural issues with the chassis. There’s no part where I find it flimsy or weak particularly the motherboard area which I find sturdy even with a huge cutout on it. The panels might not be as thick as those coming from premium cases like a RAVEN but it sure isn’t lacking in structural integrity. However, I cannot deny that the plastic top panel and the common-looking exterior cannot cut it as a premium-end chassis.

Functionality: This chassis clearly shows a lot of flexibility in terms of the variety of hardware you can put into the chassis. Custom watercooling would be very easy on this chassis with it having multiple radiator mounting places. Airflow is also great thanks to the lavish allocation of ventilation holes as well as fan mounting places. The KL05B-W can also house as much as 8 drives, 6 x 3.5″ drives and 2 x 2.5″ drives at the back.

Value: You can find the Silverstone KL05B-W with a standard retail price of $74.99 or Php3,300 which is reasonably priced for a mid-tower ATX chassis. It is a great value for a very flexible entry-level enthusiast chassis.

In conclusion, the Silverstone Kublai KL05B-W got everything for both entry-level to high-end gaming setups. It may not look as fancy as Silverstone’s RAVEN cases or Corsair’s Graphite series cases but it you are an enthusiast builder on a budget, this chassis might just be what you are looking for.

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