Enermax Phoenix Neo
Enermax power supplies have long earned our respect and we use one of them as part of our test configuration but we have not yet tested any system cases from this brand. It’s high time for us to do that.
The Phoenix Neo has a highly original appearance of the front panel which is bracketed within two protruding arcs made from 3mm aluminum. Coupled with the matching style of the 250mm side-panel fan, the arcs look good even though have no functional worth.
The buttons and I/O connectors are settled on a small excrescence in the front part of the top panel, indicating that the Phoenix Neo should be put under rather than on a desk. There are four USB ports placed wide apart from each other, two audio connectors, and an eSATA port. The buttons are responsive and have nice-looking shiny rims.
The back panel indicates that the PSU compartment is at the top. The fan seat is universal, supporting 80mm, 92mm and 120mm models. At the bottom of the panel, there are two rubberized openings for the pipes of a liquid cooling system.
The cheap feet are made from rigid plastic.
A large part of the left panel is occupied by a 250mm fan powered from a 4-pin connector. There are three controls to it: a button to turn its highlighting on and off, a 2-way switch to change the direction of the airflow, and a small wheel for adjusting the fan’s speed.
Alas, the Phoenix Neo has nothing to surprise us with in its interior. It has a standard chassis with a transversely positioned HDD rack. Devices are secured in the external bays with screwless plastic fasteners. HDDs are installed into the rack using the same guides as in the above-discussed AeroCool Syclone.
The expansion-slot brackets are reusable. They are fastened with small plastic locks but you can also fasten your expansion cards with screws if you want to.
No fan is preinstalled on the back panel.
On the front panel, before the HDD rack, there is a preinstalled 120mm fan with 4-pin connector.
The assembly procedure is just the same as with many other system cases based on such or a similar chassis. There is a large heap of cables that have to be bunched up between the CPU cooler and the 5.25-inch bays. The graphics card may hit against the HDD rack, and L-shaped SATA cables are desirable to reduce the risk of damaging the HDDs’ connectors. I want to be more specific about graphics cards, though. The system case accommodates 270mm models but only if they don’t have power connectors at the butt end. You can fit in a graphics card of the latter kind, too, but only if the mainboard’s graphics slot is high enough to be opposite the external 3.5-inch bays.
The working system case looks nice. Its soft red highlighting doesn’t irritate the eye.