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Discussion on Article:
Scandinavian Approach in Chinese Implementation: Fractal Design System Cases

Started by: nforce4max | Date 04/18/12 05:42:13 AM
Comments: 7 | Last Comment:  12/05/13 04:33:46 AM

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1. 
Once again another premium price case with a cheap plastic front panel. I wish there were more cases out there that were all metal construction and built very solid unlike most that are flimsy cheap plastic. Most cases do ok looks wise like this one but always left wanting more.
0 0 [Posted by: nforce4max  | Date: 04/18/12 05:42:13 AM]
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2. 
I have two Define R3 in black (blush aluminum) color. The HDD tray can be more friendly IMO, compared to say Cooler Master's design. I was not sure if I would like the front cover and the material it's made of, but as it turned out I find it quite pleasant. The front-door does not feel cheap, and is sturdy.

As far as the front and back legs being of different sizes, I find that hardly an issue or even qualifies a "negligence" as complained by the reviewer.

The temperature is a ted higher, but that is to be expected since it aims for quietness. One can always remove the padded side vent cover (which is a nice feature I don't see else where) and/or the two top vent covers if more air flow is needed. The key here is you can control how quiet or how much air flow you need.

The front door filters are great. I can see how much dust they trap. The easiest way to clean them is a hand-vac; it takes 10 seconds at most.

Edit: Overall, I like the R3 cases very much. Then again, I own two of these, so I can barely be considered objective.
0 0 [Posted by: gamoniac  | Date: 04/18/12 08:59:58 AM]
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3. 
Good overview reviews. I recently bought, but have not yet received, a Define XL. I am a little concerned that there is no contact process on the company website. But I bought through NE, which I am sure will help me if I need it. We will see.

Both the FRACTAL Arc (Midi, not Mini) & FRACTAL Define XL will permit usage of the taller air CPU heatsinks, such as the Thermalright Archon or Phanteks coolers. These two are very good options in a very limited field of RELATIVELY smaller inexpensive cases that will permit fully enclosed internal water-cooling (the latter with minor modding). This is my FUTURE interest.

Out of the box, the Arc Midi will allow an internal full depth (60mm) internal 240mm rad by off-setting it in the top away from the motherboard, allowing for some horizontal overlap of the motherboard but maintaining a vertical separation. Great for a mid-tower, but I could not get past that it has only two external 5.25" drive bays (DVD burner, Fan controller, but no space for reservoirs).

At NE this is going for $110 incl shipping, but recently was on special @ $70 with free shipping. I almost jumped at this as it does meet my current needs.


The FRACTAL Define XL is called by some a mid-tower, but is closer to a full tower. With a top fan(s) added in (easily modded, with or without water-cooling) & both front 140mm intake fans in, this case has the potential for a very cool very quiet case...and it has four 5.25" external bays available. I compared this with the HAF 932 Advanced, which has six of these external drive bays.

Appearance-wise, I prefer the elegant look of the Define XL over the more aggressive military look of the HAF 932.

The Define XL is a very heavy case a little less prone to flexing and vibration, and with the sound deadening material & no side openings used, a potentially quieter case. The HAF is what it says: High Air Flow, with more openings for sound to escape out.

Both cases have plenty of intake (front) fans. The HAF932 has a 230mm front, while the Define XL has two 140mm fans (plus a 120mm filtered fan optional in the drive bay).

Without modding, the HAF 932 has slightly better exhaust fans. Both cases have a 140mm rear fan. However, the HAF 932 has a 230mm top fan, whereas the Define XL has a 180mm top fan (vented rearward through a diverter).

The Define XL is fully filtered with easily removable air filters. The HAF 932 is filter challenged. Cheapest fix is to roll some screen and just stick them in. More expensive (partial) fix is somthing like the DEMCiflex magnetic screens ($60).

Both cases could house internally a 360mm x 60mm (deep) radiator, space-wise in the top of the case. In the HAF 932 the front 120mm fan (of a three fan rad) exhausts through the top in slots of an outlet cover. In the Define XL (which requires modded fan hole cut-outs) the top is flat.

Both "need" a "full" window side panel. The HAF panel is not an easy mod due to the contours of the 932's side panel, but one is (was?) available from Cooler Master ($37 delivered). The Define XL window must be self modded, but is not too difficult (or expensive).

On a recent sale @ NE, the Define XL was at $100 incl shipping (it has been @$150 incl shipping). The HAF 932 was recently @ $109 AR w/FS (Now $135 incl ship, no rebate). I went with the FRACTAL Define XL for a chance to experiment relatively (Yes, relatively) inexpensively and develop some modding skills.
0 0 [Posted by: ValueDriven  | Date: 04/19/12 07:10:31 AM]
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4. 
Scandavian approach is better than Chinese. I think the prices are bit higher but the quality is much much better. Like you can buy trendy dresses from http://www.thetrendystyle.com/ although the prices are higher but the quality is outstanding.
0 0 [Posted by: Barbara90  | Date: 09/10/13 10:11:19 AM]
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