Introducing the Nanoxia Deep Silence 2

Just recently we had a chance to review Nanoxia's Deep Silence 1, arguably the most impressive silent case we've ever tested. Nanoxia was able to produce an enclosure capable of delivering substantial air flow to components while still containing fan noise. In a market where silent cases usually lose a lot of their luster once overclocking enters the picture, the Deep Silence 1 was a breath of fresh air and proof that you could build a powerful system that you never had to hear.

In a bid to capture some of that sweet, sweet boutique volume, Nanoxia has refreshed the Deep Silence 1 into a slightly less expensive enclosure: the Deep Silence 2. The DS2 is an odd bird; it's a trimmed down DS1, but not heavily so, and in certain ways it can feel like a refinement. That all sounds incredibly promising, but did Nanoxia lose some of the potency of the original chassis in the process?

It's interesting testing the Deep Silence 2 so soon after the first one. This kind of refinement, starting with a top end product and gradually working things out as you make your way down the price ladder, is becoming less and less unusual. Corsair had a good thing going for a while, and NZXT just blew up their own top end with the Phantom 630. Yet when you look at the DS2, there isn't a whole lot that seems to differentiate it from its predecessor.

That's not a bad thing; the DS1 is one of the most attractive and functional cases I've tested. The DS2, by comparison, makes a few relatively safe trims: the bottom fan door is gone and replaced with just a solid fascia, the chimney is gone and replaced by a pair of 140mm fan mounts (with removable acoustic panels blocking them off, of course), and the flip-up I/O cluster on the top of the case has been eliminated in favor of just organizing the I/O around the power button.

Nanoxia Deep Silence 2 Specifications
Motherboard Form Factor Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX, E-ATX
Drive Bays External 3x 5.25" (plus included 5.25"-to-3.5" adapter plate)
Internal 7x 2.5"/3.5"
Cooling Front 2x 120mm intake fan (optional 2x 120mm fan mount behind drive cage)
Rear 1x 120mm exhaust fan
Top 2x 120mm/140mm fan mount
Side 1x 120mm/140mm fan mount
Bottom 1x 120mm/140mm fan mount
Expansion Slots 7
I/O Port 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic
Power Supply Size ATX
Clearances HSF 165mm
PSU 200mm
GPU 13.5" / 345mm
Dimensions 18.42" x 8.15" x 23.15"
468mm x 207mm x 588mm
Weight 24.2 lbs / 10.96 kg
Special Features Removable fan filter
USB 3.0 via internal header
Analog dual-channel fan controller (three fans per channel)
Acoustic padding on the interior and side panels
Price 89 EUR; expected US MSRP $99

I had the Deep Silence 2 sitting near the Deep Silence 1 on the floor of my apartment, and I actually had a little bit of trouble discerning the differences between the two. Amusingly, the spec sheets are extremely helpful in teasing out how different these cases actually are.

First, the Deep Silence 1 is, overall, slightly larger than the DS2. That's owing to a reduction in height; the DS2 loses a drive tray and expansion slot along with the chimney and XL-ATX compatibility. The DS2 is also thinner than the DS1, losing 20mm of CPU cooler clearance and trading down to a 120mm exhaust fan instead of 140mm. Yet the DS2 is actually deeper than the DS1, presumably a result of the added internal fan mounts. That increase in depth is enough to make up the difference in weight; the DS2 is nearly as heavy as the DS1, and to be clear, these are unusually heavy cases for this segment of the market. Nanoxia doesn't cheap out in building material: they use thick steel and fairly durable plastic for these cases.

Importantly, and thankfully, we do keep the dual-channel analog fan controller from the DS1. I've been pretty gung ho about integrated fan controllers as of late because they add a lot of value to a case for not much expense. If you want your case to run as cool as possible, you need not bother with them, but if you'd rather tune for a balance of silence and performance, they allow you to do that. Many fans have an inflection point where their noise level increases substantially compared to cooling performance, and being able to tune for that point is handy.

In and Around the Nanoxia Deep Silence 2
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  • Blibbax - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    The lack of intake filters is an absolute dealbreaker for me. You get front filters on cases that cost £30. Reply
  • Hrel - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    Agreed, really sad to see something that costs, for all intents and purposes, nothing be excluded. Hell, take away the bottom one. That's where the PSU goes, why would anyone even put fans there? So close, SO SO close. Happily I'm not building a new desktop until late summer to fall this year. Hopefully my ideal case has been released by someone by then.

    Haha, probably not though.
    Reply
  • kenyee - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    Seems to be roughly in the same size/cost/performance class IMHO.... Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Friday, February 15, 2013 - link

    No comparison with the R4 in this review because the R4 consistently performs worse than the DS1. The DS1 is a superior enclosure to the R4, and the DS2 performs roughly on par with the DS1. Reply
  • Hrel - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    You REALLY need to do something about your noise floor. 30db is crazy loud. Makes you sound testing only partially usable. Go to a basement with no other equipment. Go to a bedroom. Do SOMETHING to get that noise floor down to more realistic levels. Reply
  • Zoatebix - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    I'm pretty sure that's a product of the sensitivity of his equipment, not a noisy testing environment. Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Friday, February 15, 2013 - link

    Correct. 30dB is the noise floor of the majority of sound meters. If you want a sound meter that goes below that, you're looking at spending at least a grand if not two. Reply
  • Hrel - Monday, February 18, 2013 - link

    I see, perhaps the Anand Writers could pool their resourced to make it happen? Hm, yes yes! Probably wishful thinking but I'm gonna keep wishing. Reply
  • Dug - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    30db is not crazy loud. It is a whisper.
    Mine measure 30db at seating position and I can't hear it with normal house ambient noise.
    Even in the dead of night its barely noticeable. Typing and clicking the mouse is far louder than my computer. If you aren't typing or using your mouse, then what good is the computer?
    Reply
  • Dug - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - link

    Not to mention it rains here a lot. Rain on house is 50db so the computer doesn't even come into the equation. Reply

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