View Poll Results: Does it matter if thermaltake copies other manufacturers designs?

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Thread: Thermaltake controversy

  1. #1
    Ryzen Master race outwar6010's Avatar
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    Thermaltake controversy



    What are peoples thoughts on this?

  2. #2
    Token 'murican GuidoLS's Avatar
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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    Poll needs another option - that being something to the effect of

    One cannot lay claim to a unique black box with a piece of plexiglass pressed on the left side of the case.

    The only thing really differentiating cases these days (other than the tie-fighter looking things, the Lego looking things, and the new origami looking thing) is what's offered on the interior, and actual material. Is it cheap, thin aluminum, or slightly more substantial aluminum, or is it high quality, pressed steel? Is it tool-less? Does it offer good air flow? Good wire routing options? If not, who cares? The guy in the video is, IMO, disqualified from making any kind of 'objective' commentary simply because he claims a close working relationship with Fractal. That, and he's running his lip at high speed over items he's only seen pictures of. I mean, I've seen pictures of the the new HBM cards from AMD, right here on Hexus, and they look like junk... oh wait.. that's right.. they weren't real.

    FF to 5:53 - you'll note that the case on the left (in glorious B&W) has the plexi on the bottom, and the vents up top, while the one on the right has no plexi, and even if it did, it would be on the top of the case. And the one in technicolor is from a 3rd company altogether. So yea, they're obviously twins... kind of like Danny DiVito and Arnold...

    For Pete's sake, next thing you know, some idiot is going to patent rounded corners... oh wait...

    Edit - add

    Oh good - you don't even have to click on the video - the picture I described at 5:53 is right there behind the play arrow. Shows plainly how all 3 of those boxes are identical...

  3. #3
    Senior Member SUMMONER's Avatar
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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

    Thermaltake can do unique designs, my new super modular Thermaltake Core V71 is proof of that. Why they would want to copy other companies designs like for like, instead of doing their own, is beyond me.
    Also I do have to admit that the Fractal Design Define S and NZXT S340/H440 are truly awesome and all manufacturers should release "their own spin" on the design.
    Last edited by SUMMONER; 10-06-2015 at 06:36 AM.

  4. #4
    No-one's Fanboi Thorsson's Avatar
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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    Just going by looks doesn't tell you much about a case.

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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    Sigh. Heavily borrowing from other's ideas is hardly new in any industry.

    The Vauxhall Tigra was basically a Ford Puma knock off. Occasionally I find myself parked next to a SEAT Leon mk2 in my Alfa 147, and whilst pictures don't really convey it parked side by side it is kind of spooky, it is like SEAT took an Alfa and hit it with an ugly stick until they could get away with it but I think copying the rear door handles make it too obvious. But does it actually matter? Well personally I wouldn't bother with a SEAT so they can clone as close as they like, it won't change my buying habits. The Tigra? Well my mum has a Tigra, her second in fact. She wouldn't have considered buying the Ford for some reason I can't fathom, if the Tigra wasn't available she probably would have bought another Astra like she has in the past. So, I don't see it changing people's buying habits. I find the new black and white Skoda badge hard to tell apart from a Vauxhall badge at a distance, and that is just funny if slightly sad.

    If he recorded that video on a 64 bit Windows machine, I hope he was using an AMD processor and not one that runs an instruction set that just happens to be remarkably similar

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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    I'm pretty much in agreement with Guido, bar one point which I'll come back to.

    My overall view is rwo-fold.

    1) If it's too much of a copy, that's what copyright courts are for. And I leave them to it. Life's too short for me to care.

    2) Personally, what I expect from a case is

    - neutral appearance
    - decent manufacturing quality
    - value for money.

    Note - "value for money" does not mean cheap.

    But I'm not an enthusiast. Not any more, anyway. I care about what my PCs do, and not much what they look like. I have boring beige blobs, fancy aluminium artworks, and modern black and windowed Antec, Fractal, etc, cases, and as long as they are pretty plain and don't scream "look at me", I don't much care what they look like. I prefer no window, because I have zero interest in looking at the insides unless I'm working on them. About the first thing I do with coloured illumination, if I can, is disable it.

    Visually, a case is a box to hold PC components, and parodying the old saying about kids, it should be rarely seen and heard less.

    I DO care about construction quality, having sliced fingers open on cheap cases in the past, where they leave razor-sharp edges. And, airflow has to work. And the easier the case is to build into, or modify, the better. Hence, "value for money".

    But appearance? Plain as possible, IMHO. Beyond that, DILLIGAD.

    Here's the bit where I disagree with Guido.

    The guy in the video is, IMO, disqualified from making any kind of 'objective' commentary simply because he claims a close working relationship with Fractal.
    Not necessarily.

    As a reviewer, if you are professional, having a close working relationship does not mean your opinions are biased. But it may well mean you have access to staff, and information, you otherwise would not. But you are still paid to be objective. It's just that a close working relationship means you are likely to be better informed.

    As someone writing reviews for ... yikes, about 25 years, .... my "close working relationship" has included trips all over the world, like HP manufacturing plants in Europe, Lexmark manufacturing in Kentucky, and Epson HQ and (small scale) manufacturing in Japan. It might involve anything from dinner with the CEO, to a formal interview with him/her, to "confidential" briefings with marketing managers or design engineers. I've had tours round factories, clean rooms, and design labs. I've had hands-on with equipment kept behind locked doors even in company HQs, like Apple, to physically having pre-release hardware for 'preview' purposes, 6 months before public availability.

    The ONLY way you get access like that, either to personnel or equipment, is a close working relationship.

    Here's the thing.

    In all that 25 years, I've not once had an .... ummm ... inappropriate suggestion, from one of these companies. That 'close' relationship builds from trust, developed over time, that anything I say about them will be fair and objective, AND competent. If I criticise something, it's based on a fair criticism. If I praise something, it's similarly fair, and that any review will be, above all, objective and competent.

    Oh, and that NDAs are honoured, and "off the record" information stays that way. It's about developing a "relationship" that includes two-way trust,

    And for the record, I'm not saying all "close working relationships" are like that, or not open to abuse. Hence not "necessarily".

  7. #7
    Ryzen Master race outwar6010's Avatar
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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    I trust this guy because regardless of who's sponsoring him, his reviews are always incredibly holistic and he has gotten into trouble with companies in the past for pointing out flaws in his 40+ min reviews.

    In this video he shows that thermaltake did want pictures of a competitors case and because they weren't allowed to, they ended buying one of their own, which does seem dodgy.

    As a consumer, who likes case labs cases but doesn't want to pay to import them. I like that there's going to be a wider release of a similar design but all of this does seem quite off-putting. Also in the video thermal take are nicking entire lines of products from fractal and case labs.

  8. #8
    Token 'murican GuidoLS's Avatar
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    Re: Thermaltake controversy

    If CaseLabs was so put out, the proper place to handle this would have been in court, and not on Facebook. The mom and pop angle is all good, until it's further exposed that it's been a "mom and pop" since 1971, and they've been doing multi-million dollar contracts for the government and military, and didn't get into the enthusiast line of computer cases until late 2010. This isn't some David vs Goliath thing. This is a large metal fab company that's doing cases as a sideline. That's not to say it's a bad thing. That's saying they know how to do business, and they're playing a (very dangerous) game of trying a case in the public - one that has the potential to seriously backfire. The courts have already ruled that one car company cannot sue another because they look alike - it's what's under the skin that matters. It's even more blatantly the same thing here. A black box with holes in it is a black box with holes in it. And funnily enough, you know who ISN'T complaining? Antec - and both cases in question look like blatant copies of their Performance One series.

    You can trust whoever you choose - I don't trust commentary from third parties when the affected company(ies) have yet to make any official comment, other than a blurb on Facebook. America is the land of the free, home of the brave, and domicile of the litigious. *IF* this is a copyright issue, court is where it needs to be tried - Apple sued Samsung over rounded corners. It wouldn't be the first time an American company sued a foreign entity. And he's not being 'neutral' to be nice, or polite. He's being 'neutral' so he won't get sued for slander. You don't put your name and face to accusations of theft without trying to have some kind of disclaimer.

    As for the "dodgy" purchase of a case, that's 2013 - think 2 years is a bit long to let an accusation like this stew? Yeah - PDXLan 22. And he's using invoices from Sept of 2013 as 'evidence' of theft of design of not one, but 3 different series of cases, one of which was just introduced at this Computex. So Tt is also psychic?

    As for the 'infamous' Facebook picture? Other than shape, it's obvious they're 2 different cases. One has plexiglass. One doesn't. Even *IF* the CaseLabs version DID have plexiglass, it would be in a different position, because what I'm guessing is the radiator compartment is on the bottom of the CaseLabs version, and on the top of the Tt version.
    Personally, I find it necessary to get past the headlines, and find as much of the background on the story as I can on my own - especially when so much of the background has been omitted. As others have mentioned, not only is imitation the sincerest form of flattery, it's been a way of life in the PC business ever since the first 8086 clones came out back in the 80's, when all the cases were beige, and the only difference between floppy drives was if the latch on front flipped up and down, or rotated 90degrees. I can come up with at least 10 other situations of 'imitation/copying' that make this seem like what it is - trivial.

    And it's interesting to me that none of the other 'serious' tech sites have picked this story up. And no, PCWorld/Maximum PC and the rest of the used to be magazines but are now Facebook leftovers don't count. Even Fudzilla, the National Enquirer of tech sites, hasn't posted a story on this - and they're convinced that Apple is helping IS take over the world. Or so their sources tell them.

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