Those 5.25-inch drive bays may usually be used for holding optical disk drives, but there are some other things that can be placed inside them, like a certain device that Scythe just unleashed.
When buying any desktop case, one might start to wonder what all those 5.25-inch ODD bays are really for if most everyone can make do with just one such drive.
The easiest explanation is that the manufacturers decided to put them there just in case, because the case had to be large enough to house motherboards anyway.
Then again, if one knows what to look for, there are definitely other uses for those 5.35-inch bays than holding onto a DVD or Blu-ray disk drive.
While fan controllers are one of the possibilities, Scythe has a series of products called Kama Panel, which have a much wider functionality.
What the company did was create a multifunctional 5.25-inch device, where multifunctional means that users will be able to have it perform many sorts of tasks at once, some of them not usually associated with anything except a PC's I/O panel.
The fan controller can be seen as the least surprising of the inputs (it is of the two-channel variety). Things really start to get unusual when the drive rack is noticed.
Indeed, the Kama Panel 3, as it is called (it is the third generation) has a drive rack that can act much the same as an HDD docking station, as long as the storage unit is of the 2.5-inch variety (thickness of up to 9.5mm).
That said, Scythe did not stop there, having gone to the trouble of also implementing a pair of USB 2.0 ports, Power eSATA and support for SD and microSD cards, plus memory Stick, Memory Stick Micro and MMC (multimedia cards).
Finally, to complete the range of I/O, headphone and microphone jacks exist as well, essentially turning this into a full-blown front I/O panel.
Scythe Europe has already set up the official product page of the Kama Panel 3 and should start shipping it next month (users will have to pay 32 Euro for it).