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  • piroroadkill - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    What's the point? For the one person who has a Zalman Reserator still?
    That said, nice enough case, but my go-to case is still the Fractal Design Define R3. It just seems to do everything for everybody (as long as your graphics card fits), in a compact size, and sleek P180-esque design.
    Reply
  • cjs150 - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    I love watercooling my rig but have never used the water cooling holes on any case.

    Even if I were to use the holes, the positioning on the Antec is just weird. Because the Antec is not too tall you could place a radiator on top of the case with fans actually in the case either pulling cool outside air through the rad and into case or pushing slightly warmer air (not as good but good enough most of the time) from case through radiator and out. Either way you would want the water cooling holes to line up with the inlets on the radiator - and they do not so you would have to mod the top of this case.

    Is a bit of a shame because this could be a nice case to use for watercooling with a 240 radiator in front and on top - need to rip top off and remodel though.

    I guess I will go back to the Arc Midi
    Reply
  • bassetwrangler - Friday, January 27, 2012 - link

    As a regretful former owner of a Zalman Reserator, I find it an obvious fantasy that there still exists even one functional example. I dismembered the over complicated carcass of mine, recycling as much as possible, so that it might never reconstitute itself once again into a worthless beeping nightmare. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Saturday, January 28, 2012 - link

    I have a Silverstone TJ08-E and had to cut holes in the back myself (used the place above PCI brackets) because I use an external radiator mounted to the side of the case. A lot of people with high-end water cooling use external radiators with 3x3 120mm/140mm fans and need those holes. So there are good reasons for having them and usually they don't bother those who don't need them. However, here they are unfortunately placed very strangely and viewable. :-/ Reply
  • doctormonroe - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I am not a fan of having fan holes behind the motherboard, I used to own a Thermaltake V9, which had such a feature and all it did was allow dust to accumulate on the back of the motherboard. Reply
  • Arbie - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    A case vent behind the motherboard is actually a good idea. Even if you don't put a fan there, it is one of the few places where a simple hole makes sense. Being shielded from the main cavity, it won't let much noise leak out. But air will find its way, and will circulate around much of the mobo perimeter and rear surface to get there.

    This assumes, of course, that you are running at least a slight positive pressure, which I think is the only sensible thing to do (see other posts). Otherwise you will get dust, as you note.
    Reply
  • sajid - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    this is reply to "Fan behind the motherboard tray" by Sajid at 11:41 AM Reply
  • Boogaloo - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I managed to get an original 300 for $30 through a rebate and sale lining up. Didn't need it at the time but figured cases don't go bad. Then USB 3.0 came out :/ Reply
  • Taft12 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    Cases don't go bad thanks to devices like this!

    http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82...
    Reply
  • KineticHummus - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    How can that supply usb 3.0? it uses a usb 2.0 internal connection... Reply
  • TerdFerguson - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    It runs a cable from a USB3 port on the back of the machine. Reply
  • Ammaross - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    "It runs a cable from a USB3 port on the back of the machine."

    Which, NOTE TO ARTICLE AUTHOR, is an excellent use of those water-cooling holes in the back of cases. :)
    Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I'd be more inclined to agree if it wasn't for 20-30% of reviews being 1 or 2 egg wasn't the norm for almost all devices like that. That many unhappy customers means that something is definitely not being done right. Reply
  • bill4 - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    Well why dont you just look at the reviews? There's only 12 of them.

    It appears most of the poor reviews are whining that it doesnt add a USB 3.0 port it just reroutes from the back. Well DUH. The other thing is people whining that the card readers are only USB 2.0.

    Damn, Americans are whiny. If people focused 1/10 their energy on what our govt is doing as they do whining about corporations and products, we might be ok in this country.
    Reply
  • justaviking - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    "but anything sound of 40C"

    I expect you meant to say "anything SOUTH of 40C"
    Reply
  • Peroxyde - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    And how about ""anything below 40C"
    It's shorter and it says exactly what it means. Why use convoluted words which, in addition, could be misleading. South is interpreted differently between habitants in Northern and Southern hemispheres.
    Reply
  • justaviking - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    What am I missing? Airflow is airflow.

    Whether the flow is induced by pushing air in (which must exhaust somewhere), or by sucking air out (which much come in from somewhere), what's the difference? The two critical things are the amount of air that flows over your components, and if that air has already been warmed by flowing over other components first.

    It's not like we're significantly pressurizing the case and increasing the air density.

    Can someone please educate me?
    Reply
  • Arbie - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    With negative pressure - as you note - the air has to come from somewhere. It comes in through every opening in your case, no matter how small. So you get dust all over the internals. This impairs heat transfer from those elements, thus degrading the overall cooling. So you don't want it; simple as that. Why it keeps popping up as a good idea is beyond me.

    I don't know this case myself but imagine that it can just as well be arranged for a moderate amount of positive pressure, by changing fan directions and possibly adding filters. Or find a better-designed case. Unfortunately, not many manufacturers really think about what we need.

    And the situation isn't helped by niggling about $10 more or less in price, as this article does. That's down in the noise level for people designing and building their own PCs. I probably spent $200 experimenting with fans on my last build, until I got everything just right. An extra $50 spent on getting a properly designed case (lots of input fans with removable filters) would be well worth it.
    Reply
  • justaviking - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    That makes sense.

    Dust coming in "randomly" from all over, rather than being forced through filters (which can be cleaned) allows more dust to accumulate on the components.

    So it's less about the airflow and more about dust management. I never looked at it that way before.

    Thanks.
    Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    Don't forget that a lack of dust management can quickly come to impact long term airflow as well.

    While a case utilizing negative pressure might still perform adequately in reviews like this one (great review by the way!), long term performance might degrade appreciably if dust isn't regularly cleaned.
    Reply
  • Stuka87 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I own an original 300, and the filters up front do a VERY good job of keeping dust down inside the case. I get almost no dust build up after 2 years of running. I just clean the filters every 2-3 months. Reply
  • Ratman6161 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I've had my original 300 from (I think) about 2 years ago that I got for $39 at Microcenter. This case just can't be beat for the price.

    My experience with the filters is also very good. We have 4 cats in our house and once a week or so I just run my hand over the front of the case and wipe the accumulated hair off of it. None gets in the case through the front. Some cat hair and dust does get in via the side fan though.
    Reply
  • Montrey - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    Odd, my experience with my 300 is just the opposite. I have it on a stand about 18" off of the floor, and it is the only machine in the house that gets dust on the inside, despite the filters and a not particularly dusty house. I have the 120mm mounted on the front behind the filter, and the 140mm on the top exhausting, both set on low. I have to blow out the fins on my Arctic Freezer 7 at least every month or they get completely clogged. I suppose I could try upping the speed on the front intake fan, but I trade the convenience for quiet. Reply
  • MilwaukeeMike - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I experience this with my Antec P180. It uses negative pressure and I get dust build up on all the little cracks around my unused 5.25 drive covers. The filters do their job and get most of it, but i do have to spend a little extra time cleaning because of the setup.

    I should just move my fans and be done with it.
    Reply
  • rodrigu3 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    As I understand it, negative pressure systems work if you have a large filter that allows for low resistance airflow. The majority of air will flow through the path of least resistance and so will probably enter through the relatively large opening in the front of the case through the filter, rather than all the tiny little openings. So, the majority of air entering the case will be filtered, although some dusty air will still get through. You can minimize that on this chassis by putting high resistance filters on the side panels without any fans and just using the two fans that come with the case. Reply
  • 7Enigma - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    The original is a fantastic budget case that really is impossible to beat for the $30-40 on sale with free shipping you can regularly find on Newegg. Guess that will be coming to an end as its replacement is finally here but it was great while it lasted. Just starting to read the review but wanted to mention this before I forgot. Reply
  • 7Enigma - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    Wow I'm shocked you didn't give at least a silver award for this case!?!?! Similar to the original this case's performance is far beyond its pricetag. Reply
  • Stuka87 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I have an original 300, and i love it.

    However, I am looking at this case, and it looks like it only came with 2 fans, rather than the previous generations four fans? The first 300 had two intake fans on the front behind the filters. This case doesn't have those fans, or the filters?

    I am thinking it would have been a bit cooler if it had them, although possibly a bit louder. Although mine set to low is barely audible.

    I am also glad they made the opening behind the CPU larger, as I had to cut this area on mine to get the rear bracket for my CPU heatsink on there.
    Reply
  • ZekkPacus - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    The original stock 300 only came with 2 fans (top and rear), it was the Illusion that came with 4.

    Anyway, though I do think AnandTech does some of the best reviews on the net when it comes to cases, I'd love to see them start using the fanbays in these cases. For example I just swapped cases (from a 300 actually to an 1100), and instantly added two more fans to the stock two. That turns the case from a negative pressure design to a neutral or slightly positive pressure design, which improves dust and also lowers temperatures somewhat. Negative pressure is easiest to achieve when you're talking only stock fans, which is why these designs are so common, and when a manufacturer's making a sub$100 case, they need to cut corners to make a profit out of it. Getting positive or neutral pressure out of a stock design of only two fans would involve a high-RPM screamer in the front bays and the 140mm top fan. That config would likely please no one.

    But it's very very unlikely that anyone buying these cases will be using them with stock fan configuration, a little bit of sense from AT concerning where your fans would be best placed out of the many options (I agree with the earlier poster about the uselessness of behind-the-CPU fan bays) and what you can expect out of them would be great.
    Reply
  • SBTech86 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    looks okay but for $79, i would go for corsair 400R (64 ish when sale) Reply
  • Eridanus - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    The curves on the front edges simply don't fit the rest of the design. Reply
  • GuyIncognito_ - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    They are hideous. Reply
  • Azsen - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    The 2.5" slot at the bottom of the case does not work at all. I got the Antec 200 v2 recently and an Asus motherboard with SATA 6G cables that bend 90 degrees and look like this:
    http://techinstyle.tv/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/p...

    So you can't fit your 2.5" SSD in the bottom and use the 90 degree connector because there's no room because the bottom of the case gets in the way. Then you can't just swap the connector ends around and use the straight connector on the drive because on the Asus motherboard the system panel pins (PWR, HDD, LEDs etc) get in the way so you can't use the 90 degree connector there either.

    So my choices were
    a) Abandon the 2.5" slot down the bottom, or
    b) Buy a SATA 6G cable with two straight ends.

    In the end I ended up screwing it into a 3.5" slot from one side and it's suspended there. Probably going to snap off with the weight soon so I'll be forced to shell out for the 3.5 -> 2.5" converter.
    Reply
  • Burticus - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    At first I thought this was taking the original Three Hundred and changing what I consider to be the achilles heel.... the hard drive mounts. They re-oriented them to face outwards instead of inline which is awesome. USB 3 is nice.

    Front these pics and the ones on Newegg, it looks like they got rid of the front 2 120mm fans and the removable filter. The front filter is still there, and they added a power supply intake filter. But they did away with the front 2 120mm fans and made them "optional". So be prepared to pick up a couple extra fans. Honestly on my original Three Hundred I replaced the 120mm fans anyway because they were a little noisy.

    http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?id=NzA...

    FYI this is $69 at Newegg right now, so I think we might see some sub $50 sales in the future.
    Reply
  • bnolsen - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    Side mounted hard drives are vastly inferior for cooling. The brackets block half the air flow even if no hard drives are installed. Additionally it looks as if they got rid of the spacing between the drives.

    From the drive cooling and general airflow this case is a big thumbs down compared with the 300 which is an excellent case for small raid arrays.
    Reply
  • zero2dash - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I'm a fan of Antec and have been for years. Loved the P182 (even though it was too big), love my 300, loved building in a 100 a few months ago for a customer.

    That being said - why would anyone buy this over a 300 let alone a BitFenix Outlaw for $49?
    If I'm case shopping, the Outlaw is the case to buy in the sub-$100 market.

    Antec seems to have become fans of redundancy. Forgetting about the Outlaw for a minute - the 100 has a good feature set and a decent price point; the 300, slightly better in both regards. Is Antec's new objective to over-saturate the computer case market with Antec enclosures that are $10-$20 different in price than all their other enclosures, with a minor upgrade here or there? Has Antec really done anything sub-$100 other than take the same case frame, churn out a modified outside, and sell re-hash after re-hash?

    I guess in Antec's world, there is no BitFenix Outlaw (or any other lower end, cheap, high feature-set case....Nzxt Gamma also comes to mind). I guess in their minds, Antec only competes with Antec.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    I'm pretty sure the Three Hundred will be discontinued now and Antec will only make the Three Hundred Two going forward. Reply
  • bnolsen - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    i bought all my antec 300's for $49. I haven't seen this case before, the door is bad, blocking proper air intake. It seems microcenter carries these, i'll probably go take a look since the 302 looks to be a major downgrade. Reply
  • rodrigu3 - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    Buying this case was cheaper than it would have been for me to replace my 6 case fans that have started to die after many years. Seems like a good build. Reply
  • Arbie - Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - link

    "Anyway, though I do think AnandTech does some of the best reviews on the net when it comes to cases, I'd love to see them start using the fanbays in these cases. "

    I agree with this. And it would be great to see more discussion of motherboard fan controls, which are the other part of the equation. Mobo reviewers almost always use an open test bed, and either ignore or only briefly mention the hardware and (BIOS) firmware supporting thermal sensors and fan speeds. Some companies (eg Asus) do a far better job of this than others (eg Gigabyte) but get no credit for it on the review sites.

    Personally, I'd much rather have a thorough set of sensors and controls (which I will absolutely use) than a second graphics slot which will just sit empty. And I think that in reality most DIY folks would be better served that way. But fans and cooling are a lot less glamorous than graphics boards, so any mobo built like that would get killed in the press.
    Reply
  • stren - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    I have actually drilled my own water cooling ports on my older Antec 300, PM me on the forums if you want to see it. So yes they're good to have. Unusually placed on the top, the rear is much more normal. Glad to see they fixed the major flaws with the old Antec 300, but really they could have gone a few steps further and painted the inside black as well as offering a windowed version. An improvement, but not worth paying $80 imo, there are other better cases out there. Reply
  • mbf - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    ...to take the original 300 and make it look like crap. I'm saying this purely from an aesthetic point of view and I'm specifically referring to the the curved front. It seems to be what Antec is best at these days considering the hideous DarkFleet series, the LanBoy Air and also the new P280. It's a shame.... Reply
  • GuyIncognito_ - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    That's exactly what I was thinking!

    The only thing I didn't really like on my 300 was the pair of protrusions on the front. So they made them even bigger! XD

    I hope that either the USB 3.0 panel fits the old 300 or the 300 plastic front fits 300-2.
    Reply
  • marc0871 - Sunday, February 12, 2012 - link

    yep.
    the curved front is my greatest issue with this case too.
    the rest of the case on the other hand, is to much of an improvement over the 300 to not put it on my shortlist.
    and pretty high on that too.

    still, i would like to see the 300 bezel on the 302.
    Reply
  • 8steve8 - Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - link

    why bother reviewing full-size atx cases?

    who buys these clunkers?

    what percentage of people need atx over microatx? why? and for the masses, mini-itx...
    Reply
  • Stuka87 - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    Are you being serious? Reply
  • bnolsen - Thursday, January 26, 2012 - link

    mostly agreed, but the old 300 is excellent for holding a small raid array excellent drive cooling, etc. I was hoping antec would release a microatx version of the 300 (same number of hard drive bays, dump the extra 5.25's). Reply
  • ZekkPacus - Sunday, January 29, 2012 - link

    The issue is that most hobbyist builders won't have great cable management skills, bigger cases are easier to tidy.

    Added to that, I'll always have full ATX cases. Granted I only run a GPU and a soundcard nowadays, but spacing them out makes me happy. Show me a MicroATX case that has thermals equivalent to an antec eleven hundred/p280/corsair carbide 500r, and as much cable management.

    The P180 mini isn't far off but have you seen the size of it? It's more or less a mid-tower case. Added to which it is now badly out of date.
    Reply
  • Cybertori - Saturday, February 11, 2012 - link

    I have a Three Hundred that I am very happy with. Only downside is the fan noise, which is kind of inherent in a well-ventilated steel case for gamers. Its nice they went to USB 3.0, and made the side panels easier to attach. Very solid case, easy to work with, and keeps a gaming rig cool and stable. Reply

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