Cooler Master has long been making cases that fit various needs, but the H500M is one of their most unique offerings yet. It’s shaped like an airplane and includes some exciting features to stand out from other case designs.
We’ll be looking at the CoolerMaster H500M PC case today. This chassis, which follows the H500P mesh and is one of the brand’s high-end options, was first shown at CES 2018. This is just a refresh with the occasionally added touch; it lies between the H500P and the H500P Mesh, with RGB as one of the key emphases.
This is CoolerMaster’s third attempt at the H500. However, this model is much more expensive. Old faults seem to have been resolved with this current upgrade, as many will recall that the earlier H500P’s construction quality and air intake were questioned but were subsequently resolved by the mesh version. Let’s see what the CoolerMaster H500M brings to the table, shall we? With a similar inside and a more aesthetically pleasing appearance, let’s see what the CoolerMaster H500M offers to the table.
- It’s a stunning case.
- Excellent cooling capacity
- Interior with plenty of space
- I/O connection in the modern era
- It is no longer falling apart.
- Excessively costly
- Materials of poor quality
- To open the side panels, you’ll need an extra tool.
- Covers for cable management are useless.
- The interface is not very user-friendly.
|Measurements (mm)||544 × 248 x 546 pixels (L x W x H)|
|Materials||The glass that has been tempered, Steel|
|Available colors||Iron Grey|
|I/O panel in the front||1x USB 3.1 Type-C, 4x USB 3.0 Type-A, Audio In & Out (supports HD audio)|
|Slots for Expansion||7+2|
|Bays for driving||6 x 2.5″, 2 x 3.5″, 2 x 2.5″, 2 x 3.5″, 2 x 2.5″, 2 x 2.5″, 2 x 2.5″, 2|
|Support for motherboards||ATX, E-ATX, Mini ITX, Micro ATX|
|Cooling (front, top, and back)||3x 120/140mm fan, 2x 200mm fan / 3x 120mm, 2x 140/200mm fan, 1x 120/140mm fan|
|GPU’s maximum length||412mm|
- Interchangeable front panel (glass & mesh)
- ARGB 200mm fans & controller
- The glass that has been tempered
- Excellent front-end I/O connection
- Support arm for GPUs
- Support for water cooling
Inside the Container:
- PC case MasterCase H500M
- The glass that has been tempered front panel
- User’s Guide
The H500M is a big mid-tower, and the first thing you notice about it is how good it looks. The complete mesh front with the massive 200mm fans behind it is a fantastic aesthetic addition that improves ventilation and interior temperatures.
The front panel is split into three sections, with mesh on all sides. However, with this model, you can swap out the mesh middle for the included Glass that has been tempered panel. The Glass that has been tempered front panel is more or less a waste of time, but it’s good to have options like this, as not everyone will prefer the mesh front like me.
Another reason to keep the front is the lessons we acquired with the H500P (and believed CoolerMaster had learned as well). For example, that model had air intake concerns, so when the “mesh” version was introduced later, it was like a breath of fresh air.
We can see the pre-installed fans at the front, which spin at 800 RPM and, as you would expect, are silent while pushing in a large volume of fresh air to the system.
The familiar-looking ports and power button are located at the top of the front panel. The first thing to notice about the front panel is that it is completely equipped with USB 3.0 Gen1 (four ports) and a single USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C connector, providing you with all of the contemporary connections you could want. Keep in mind that you’ll need to check that your motherboard contains the necessary components.
The power button is lighted with the CoolerMaster logo, and there are headphones and microphone connectors. However, the reset button has been repurposed as an RGB mode button. Oddly, they didn’t simply add some more controls, but there you have it.
Overall, the front looks nice; there’s plenty of connection, and, most significantly, the panel doesn’t come off in your hands.
At the rear, we see the third and final, pre-installed 140mm fan, which is as big as you can get at the back. Next, we see a thumbscrew towards the top, which keeps the top panel firmly in place, and lastly, you get your standard seven Slots for Expansion and two vertical slots.
The H500M comes with a PSU bracket and some oversized thumbscrews to go along with it. It was a little tricky to attach this bracket, and it looked to be a tight fit around the screws that hold the shroud in place, but I’m not sure whether it was just my model.
One of the main changes in this refresh is the inclusion of two Glass that has been tempered side panels. Unfortunately, like many aspects of this case, some excellent points are overshadowed by many questions. The Glass that has been tempered on the interior side is something I am always a fan of but for the love of God, CoolerMaster, why do I need to use an extra tool to get into the case?
Carrying on with this trend, The Panel on the Back now also features a Glass that has been tempered panel with the exact locking mechanism. Now, you can get over the tool requirement as you aren’t inside the case that often; it’s a minor gripe. What isn’t minor is the design at the back, which I will touch upon shortly!
The top, at first glance, is excellent; it follows the case’s design well, with a combination of mesh and Glass that has been tempered. Hang on, though, and the glass panel is glued on? So, it feels a bit cheaper than you’d like, but how often will you caress your top panel?
The top panel no longer falls off with the slightest provocation and looks fantastic from above, particularly with an RGB-filled inside.
From the Inside
The H500interior M’s is large, much like its predecessor. This mid-tower is on the bigger side, and it shows on the interior. This was extremely simple, and even those knuckleheads that install a GPU and AIO before wiring anything shouldn’t have a problem.
The rear of the case has rubber grommets, but they aren’t as user-friendly as Fractal Design’s Define series, and I found it difficult to get heavy wires through them. There is a lot of space at the top since this will be the primary location for mounting an AIO or water-cooling rad, so compliments there. At the top, the case can house three 120mm or two 140/200mm fans and a radiator up to 360mm.
The CoolerMaster H500M can accommodate motherboards as large as E-ATX. The cutout holes may be limited if you use an E-ATX board, but the reservoir mounting bracket does a beautiful job of concealing wires. Although you could install a board as small as mini-ITX, ATX is the best option for a clean interior.
The backplate inside features the reservoir bracket as mentioned above. This bracket, of course, has other uses and can be used to mount a couple of extra 2.5” SSDs. Unfortunately, the stand also includes the Support arm for GPUs, which I used, and I’m still not convinced it did anything, but better to be safe than sorry.
One of those PSU/HDD shrouds, which are pretty awful-looking plastic slabs, may be found near the bottom. Regardless, it’s better than having no shroud at all, and there are two more mounting slots for 2.5″ SSDs here. The shroud’s most prominent feature is the specialized water pump bracket, which further increases the case’s water-cooling capacity. A radiator lid is also included on the blanket to allow larger radiators.
The most challenging part of the inside is getting to the HDD cage under the shroud. So if you choose the H500M, keep in mind that you’ll have to fiddle with removing the veil to install the HDD drives.
The Panel on the Back
There isn’t usually a lot to chat about regarding The Panel on the Back of a PC case, but CoolerMaster has managed to buck that trend. The back is solid with two different 2.5” SSD mounting spots and enough tie spots for cable management. Unfortunately, they have included these steel plates to cover the cables then. If you wonder why this is a big deal, it isn’t, but remember the fact there is a glass panel on top of it, so what was the point?
After you’ve unscrewed everything and let the cable management shine through the glass panel, you can quickly leave things off, but they’re simply bad design decisions, in my view. There is plenty of space for cables; otherwise, items become a little tight back there.
We can see the accompanying ARGB controller at the bottom, where the reset button has been repurposed and relocated. I don’t mind if it rests uncomfortably on the back of these steel panels, but why the most inconvenient one? Was this something CoolerMaster considered before going into production? This layout looks beautiful in any direction, but it simply feels ridiculous.
The MasterCase H500M comes packed with premium features and delivers thermal performance as expected. If you can get past a few design choices that seem to make little sense, there is still a lot on offer here from CoolerMaster. So for a moment, let’s take the price out of the equation and go over the Main Characteristics of this mid-tower.
The cooling performance is comparable to its older “Mesh” brother, the H500P. Temperature performance was also close to the heavy Thermaltake View 71 and Fractal Design Define R6, so you can’t knock CoolerMaster’s ability in the temp department. Those 200mm fans have a big say in the matter and aren’t just a pair of pretty lights plus; they run at a low speed with a high CfM, so the acoustics aren’t deafening.
This is designed to look fantastic, and it does a great job of that. The materials may not be the best, but the mesh front and glass panels go a long way to making anything you put inside this look visually epic.
Support for water cooling
Plenty of Support for water cooling is always lovely, giving even novice modders excellent options. Also, the included res and pump brackets aren’t something you know a lot of from other manufacturers, cheers CoolerMaster.
Overall, the CoolerMaster H500M is jam-packed with features, and you can’t help but think that if they had done it with a little more consideration, the hefty price tag would have been justified.
If you like the design but not the price, look into the H500P; at the very least, you’ll receive a better price-to-performance ratio with that model. However, let’s get one thing clear about performance: this is fantastic with the temperatures, but I’m not sure where the additional expense is coming from.
Why can’t I suggest the H500M when it delivers the contemporary connection and a lot of it, has enough functions to suit virtually anybody, and looks great? The cost. Also, this isn’t the most user-friendly experience I’ve had, and you should spend your money elsewhere if you consider the more premium-feel materials in NZXT’s H-series, Phanteks P-series, and Fractal Design Define-series.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the Cooler Master case good?
A: Cooler Master is a reputable case manufacturer, and their cases are typically outstanding. They offer various types that suit the needs of many users, whether you’re looking for something sleek or sturdy.
Is Cooler Master H500M good?
A: The Cooler Master H500M is a highly regarded case, but it’s not the best. Many reviewers praise its performance, and its design looks sleek. It also has excellent value for money, so if you’re on a budget, then this would be your choice of the case to buy.
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