Outside the Prodigy M MicroATX Case
The new Prodigy M doesn’t really look much different than the older Prodigy original. BitFenix knew they had a classic case style from the beginning so changing the outside was not very difficult. Leave it along but give it a bigger window since it uses a bigger motherboard and the configuration of the motherboard is like standard cases so making a bigger window for it was a given for them and did not take away from the looks of the Prodigy M at all.
In my opinion the size of the window is picture perfect. Some people may have a problem with the power and reset switches being at the bottom of the side panel but that is something that can be easily adjusted to and the USB 3.0 position is great for using in everyday situations so the control panel is in my opinion a nicely configured placement.
Just so you understand, the black edition is the only one with the remaining front metallic mesh grill in front. The other colored versions have a solid front cover since there is really no way to put fans in the front of this Prodigy M and the front mesh is just something to be modded at a later date. There are many people that have made them from Plexiglas and covered even the original that way, but if you want the full front solid covered type get one of the colored options.
A look at the first view of the windowed side version shows the SSD and Mechanical drive mounts that is standard with the Prodigy M, but most people will not use this part as it takes up almost 40% of the viewing for the front and there are plenty of other places to attach a drive in this case without the use of this obstructive piece of hardware. This was probably a useful item for the first generation case with no window to help with easy wiring and storage in the front but I like the other placements better.
The control side of the case has plenty of distance between buttons and plugs so there is not a problem with filling this side with external devices and still have plenty of room to get to the power and reset buttons.
Taking a closer look at the control panel I have taken the liberty to diagram the layout of the available USB 3.0 x 2, Microphone and Headphone jack, both hard drive activity lights and the reset and Power button at the bottom. As you can see here BitFenix has reoriented the side panel switches to read in the correct way. Actually the reasoning of this is that the first Prodigy M was set up for this side to be on the windowed side with no windowed versions but since they have decided to go with the windowed version on the controls have been permanently setup for the back side of the case.
The top view is front on top. The Filter cover is very tight fitting with two teeth that holds the front part of the filter into place and the back part fits mechanically into a slot that locks with the sliding button on top. Once it is locked in it fits surely and is a great washable filter made of a plastic structure with the metal mesh that acts as the dust filtration. There is no micro dust element to wash and the mesh is the only filter that is used with this intake area.
Here is a picture of the bottom of the Prodigy M case. Power supplies can create a lot of heat and the heat is forced out the bottom so the heat shield is magnetically fastened to the bottom of the case if you want to mount drives in the bottom of the case. It is very easy to remove this shield from the bottom and there is a placement for a 120mm stock fan included and a 140mm, 200mm and a 230 mm exhaust fan. With the raised cube design it is possible to fit a large fan under the case and use drives if you are careful to mount your drives on the inside first before the building begins then mount the larger 200mm fan on the bottom. While this configuration is not suggested by BitFenix in it’s fitting procedures I have found that this can work if you are careful to make sure that the screws of the drive does not interfere with the movement of the outer placement of the fan.
I have taken the liberty to detail the placement of the fans and drives by different colors. The blue holes are made for securing the larger 200mm or 230mm fan the white holes are for 2 x 120mm fans. The rear holes are not seen in this picture due to the placement of these screw holes are under the bottom sleds of the case. Finally the red marked holes are for two mechanical hard
Here is a detailed look at the back of the cubed Prodigy M. The design is the bottoms up motherboard design and 5 PCI slots. Why five? Well if you plan on using some really beastly video cards in your build the Prodigy M can handle two dual slotted video cards into the case without having problems with fit. The exhausts fan can be builders choice with either a 120mm or 140mm fan options. The bottom shows the power plug for the power supply but this plug is really an extension cord that routes the wall outlet power to front mounted power supply. One of the most interesting parts in the back is the all in one PCI slot holder that uses a single rubber coated screw to hold all the video and other cards into place all at once but it holds in two ways. The screw only pulls the protrusion part of the mechanism into its slot and that protrusion of metal holds all the cards with the same amount of force no matter where the card is located. It’s a really good idea that is not new but the way they did it was really safe solid and very ingenious.