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Hardware Fractal Design Define R4 Review

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Baz, 20 Jul 2012.

  1. modd1uk

    modd1uk Well-Known Member

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    The case deserves 84% because of its overall features and price, yes its temps aint the best but then its not aimed to be a high airflow case..its designed to be a quiet case.
     
  2. MrTeal

    MrTeal Member

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    And the airflow can always be improved, quite easily, if the buyer needs better cooling. But surely most people who are seriously considering buying this case are as, if not more, interested in it's USP of being a 'silent' case, in which case you almost always have to take something of a hit when it comes to cooling/temps.

    For those wondering about cable management space, Fractal have mentioned this on their website.

    When they say wider they mean it as well; the R3 was 207mm wide, the R4 is 232mm wide.
     
  3. jrs77

    jrs77 Well-Known Member

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    I've got myself the Define Mini last week and my temps are waaaay better, just because I optes to install 4 fans instead of only usung the two the case was shipped with.

    Allthough I do understand that you test the cases with stock-fans delivered and all that, but please do us all a favour and test the case with two intakes and two vents, and then let's see where the case sits in the list.

    Even with four fans running at 800-1000RPM the case will be very silent, without sacrificing cooling.

    Oh, and the built-quality of Fractals cases is totally awesome imho.
     
  4. azrael-

    azrael- I'm special...

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    Four iterations of this case and they still haven't managed to use 4 identical case feet. TBH, it's my main gripe with the Define cases. Asymmetrical features like this just turn me off... :(
     
  5. jakobfrimmel

    jakobfrimmel New Member

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    hmm interesting… but I wouldn't wanna stick a high-end pc into that case just from the fear of heat....
     
  6. jrs77

    jrs77 Well-Known Member

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    Heat is no issue with this case when you use both front-intakes and atleast one of the top-vents. Using a full setup of fans will drop the delta T another 10°C at full speed.

    The problem with the method bit-tech is using in their case-reviews is, that they never use a full array, or atleast reasonable amount of fans, but only the little amount of fans delivered by the manufacturer - usually two.
    Imho bit-tech should test every case with the same amount of fans and with the same fan-model if possible to show the real capabilities of a case.

    The fans delivered by Fractal Design run at max 1200RPM and are low-noise-models. These fans are not ment for maximum cooling and are another factor for the rather mediochre review-result.

    So, I wouldn't really take this review into account, but rather ask people who actually use the case and ask about their experiences.
     
  7. salesman

    salesman New Member

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    The reason Bit-tech doesn't use other fans for the review, and I wish I could find where the first said this, is that there is added cost to the build.

    Doing a review this way shows what a buyer will get out of box, whereas, if they leveled the playing field and used the same number of fans per review some cases would need 2-3 additional fans increasing the price.

    IMO I feel this would skew the results and confuse people.

    That said I love this case. I would take the fans in the case out and put in Noctua fans. I have a P180 case right now and I love it. A quite case that keeps my components cooled just enough.

    When I upgrade this case would be in the top for my consideration. A good solid case. Thanks for the review.
     
  8. Hustler

    Hustler Well-Known Member

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    Nice, but i really cant put up with cases that have the inputs on top, fine if you sit the case on the floor, but if like me, the tower is sitting on your desk, having to stand up each time to plug something in gets old really quick...
     
  9. maximus09

    maximus09 Forever n00b

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    I'm glad they have improved a lot of the stuff that irritated me from the R2. Never bought the R3 as it didn't give enough improvements on the R2.

    The only thing I was hoping, like a lot of other users here, that there would be more space at the back of the MB tray for cables.

    No word of this though? Even with my R2 my side panel buldges simply due to the ATX power cable. I was hoping that the R4 with the added 22mm wider chasis would add a few mm to behind the MB tray :( I think there is only between 10mm-15mm as it is.

    Anyway AWESOME improvements, I'm still going to buy it!! If only just for the removeable HD chasis!! Put a couple of Silverstone Air Penatrators in there without the HD chasis in the way and your hardware will get blasted by air "all day long". ;)

    Oh on that note; I DEMAND A RE-TEST WITH ALL FAN MOUNTS FILLED!! NO ONE EVER USES ONLY THE STANDARD FANS SUPPLIED!!
     
  10. Saivert

    Saivert Member

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    If it was not for the fact that I already got the Define R3 I would buy this in an instant. No hesitation.
    I too dislike the fact that the R3 has so little space for radiator in the top. The R4 seems to fix most of what is wrong with the R3.
     
  11. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    R4 has 26mm space behind the tray according to OC3D.

    And even less with all fan mounts filled :D. Majority has 1 or 2 at front and 1 at back and that is it.
     
  12. fdbh96

    fdbh96 New Member

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    I don't about anyone else with their R3s, but my hardware never gets what I would call too hot, while keeping really quiet. I also only use the stock fans with it so I assume that is the same with this case

    Shame they couldn't give more room round the motherboard tray as the 24pin makes the side panel extrememely hard to put on.
     
  13. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    10mm@R3->22mm@R4 is not big enough change for you ?
     
  14. fdbh96

    fdbh96 New Member

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    Doubt it, my side panel wouldn't even nearly fit on. I think I would need more than 1cm, but I am a really lazy cable tidyer :D
     
  15. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    You will have to stack various power cables on each other for ~1 inch not to be enough.
     
  16. loftie

    loftie Well-Known Member

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    Maybe if Bit-Tech case reviews included tests with the included fans, and then another test with all possible fans? That way you see what performance you get out of the box, and then maximum possible cooling with all fans
     
  17. Valinor

    Valinor New Member

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    So if they were going to do a review with all the fan mounts filled.. what fans do they use? Should they use the same type of fans as the rest of the case, or the same type of fans across all reviews? How would this affect the noise and ease of construction?

    Unless there's a solid slab of metal in front of the spare fan mounts then more fans = more cooling in almost all scenarios. No need to test it to show that.
     
  18. loftie

    loftie Well-Known Member

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    Fans would be decided on, so long as they are consistent between different cases, otherwise the test would be unfair.

    As far as noise and construction, surely that's part of what's to be reviewed. As in this case, it's trying to be a quiet case. If filling out all fan slots makes it quite noisy, they surely it's failing at what it's attempting to be - and yes more fans equal more noise. Same with ease of construction. If the fans are located in poor positions, or difficult to attach, surely we'd what this to show in the review?

    And it's pretty obvious that more fans equal better cooling, what the aim would be is to test how much better. Some cases might perform better than others, having extra fans aiming at different locations.

    The mains reason I think this is it seems that this case is pretty hot on the GFX card. Now I know adding a side fan will help this, but I'm curious to see how much it'll help. Since it's unrealistic to test every case with 1,2,3,4,5 etc fans, having an idea of what you get out of the box to the best, everything else will fall inbetween.
     
  19. John_T

    John_T Member

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    I think loftie's idea is good in principal: Choosing to replace all fans with 'x' brand, and to do the same across all case reviews, that's a pretty easy thing for readers to compare and understand. Test 'A' is case out of the box, test 'B' is maximum potential of case. (A bit like the 'idle' and 'load' tests).

    I can't see how changing fans would affect ease of construction, and noise differences would be relative across all cases. To say there's no point in testing it, well, you may as well say there's no point testing cases at all.

    I think the only problem comes with the time involved. Doing testing that way would double the amount of time it takes to test a case, so in an environment with limited resources that would lead to half the amount of cases being tested.

    It may not prove to be a practical idea, but I wouldn't suggest it was pointless.
     
  20. Valinor

    Valinor New Member

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    Yeah, rushing off the last bit of that post because I needed to leave meant I left it a little short. There is a potential issue with swapping out all the fans though; case manufacturers who have invested in better fans, or fans suited to a particular case, will be unfairly penalised if the fans were swapped out (I'm thinking of Silverstone RV02, RV03, FT02 as my first thoughts). I seem to remember they did a fan test at some point (it could have been ages ago though), so I suppose they could try a test as-is, and then do another test with all fan mounts filled with their fans.

    But again, it depends really on how much time they have and how useful it would be. I clearly can't speak for everyone, but I've only once bought a case and added extra fans to it, and that was for a friend and because the case only came with 1 fan. Then again, the cases I've owned (P180, 1200, RV02) have been either nearly filled or full of fans anyway...
     

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