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Thread: And it's one more DEFINE S review - kind of...

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    And it's one more DEFINE S review - kind of...

    One more Define S review to digest:

    However, before we begin a slight apology as I had to post this in an incorrect section of the forum to circumvent my lack of ability to post in the Readers Review section of the forum (which I cannot explain and have reported). If a mod could be kind enough to move the thread to the correct collection that would be great.

    I’d like to thank Hexus for the competition, I really appreciate it, I enter most times but never expect to win (to the extreme that I can categorically state I did not think it was a scam at first). Imagine an embarrassed emoticon thingy.

    Not only did I win, but it kick-started a new build for me. Let me rephrase that. It kick-started the seed of belief that a new build could be shoehorned to the list of priorities for the family, this belief has grown into a reality of sorts as the new build has been okayed and will fall in line with Xmas gifting. So although my review will be on the case (first impressions only) and the fans (in more depth) I will not actually build with them until later this year (Build project to follow). This is balanced out by the fact I will not be getting socks and/or slippers from Santa this year.

    Lastly, before beginning, please if you haven’t yet, seek out the more interesting posts on the Define S from: =assassin=, Pleiades, big_hairy_rob and Sumanji who have already done this, only better. See the Readers Review area.

    Let’s start with the fans.
    Fractal Design Venturi HF-14

    The Box:
    Nice, there are three of them. The packaging is as you would expect, a standard picture of the fan on the front of the box with a minimalistic summary of fan size (140MM), RPM (1200) and Flow Rate (High).
    The back of the box provides more information, making me wonder how I will register a receipt for this prize after seeing the 3 year Warranty listed and puzzling over the static pressure rating’s value of ‘0.95 mm H2O’. I briefly wonder why they were measuring water levels and what that would do to the wiring before placing it the mental folder marked ‘things I will call magic’ and putting the quandary out of my mind.
    The ratings given for noise and airflow are relatively impressive at both high and low speeds with the almost silent running at low speed being very in-stream for my festive build.
    Additionally the outer box provides us with three images; two are comparing images of the interchanging rubber corners which transform the fan into the smaller 120MM form factor. This is a great feature which we’ll explore once we get hands-on, but initial thoughts conclude this should really be standard for any premium 140MM fan. The last picture is somewhat of a misnomer as it states ‘Premium materials’ and the picture can’t really convey that statement suitably much like a picture of Halitosis doesn’t provide deep insight. Let’s get hands-on with the fan and see if the statement stands.

    Just about to open up and see what’s inside and Fractal throws an added wow factor to me (like an unexpected double rainbow) as I discover the Velcro sealed front of the box which swings open to allow a view of the fan through a plastic window (the materials do look premium from this angle) and diagrams of the replaceable 120MM rubber corners, the Low speed adapter and the fan screws. On the inside cover I find more detailed information on the inner workings including Trip Wire Technology, Blade design, Counterpull Magnet and FDB Bearing (the materials are now also sounding premium and my halitosis reference becomes odorous)

    The Opening:
    On opening the top of the box the fan comes in I find a small compartment containing the add-on items nicely packaged in plastic baggies in the case of the screws and the corners. Also in this compartment via a small hole in the base of the section is the wiring of the fan.
    After pulling out the folded card to reveal the fan itself, I make an attempt to slide the fan out, however the fan would not budge with the Fractal Design packaging team having designed the dimensions of the box to tightly mould to the edges of the fan. In order to extract the fan without damaging the box I opened the base of the box and using my hands in a push/pull configuration I worked the fan through. I damaged the box.
    But the fan is out. It looks good and the materials do now feel, look and sound premium. I pause to go and brush my teeth in a bout of self doubt/paranoia.

    Laid out with the pieces the fan looks great. The rubber corners can be interchanged with each other very easily and my original thought continues to be that all premium 140MM fans should come with this feature. The low speed adaptor is about three inches long and significantly reduces the noise output sacrificing about a third of the total airflow. The screws are standard fare and are jet black matching the majority of cases.

    All sounding pretty positive so far and it is. My only negatives would probably be due to my own preferences:
    I prefer the rubber type fixing you can use instead of screws but these are very much one time use after you cut the leading thread off of them, so it’s not a given that these would suit all.
    I also notice that the colour scheme dark grey/light grey does not match with the fans that came with the Define S (White) so I may get OCD about that when I build.
    All in all, a great fan.

    The Case
    Define S thoughts:

    I own a very budget case for my current PC which is pretty old so the DEFINE S on extraction from the box was like getting bumped to first class on a plane by chance. Very Exciting.

    It looks good and feels well built. I like the plain architecture – rather than the flashy fins and grills of some cases, suits my needs. The insides are spacious, very spacious without the ladder of drives common in these cases and there is room in the back for three hard drives and two SSD’s or up to five SSD’s by sacrificing a mechanical drive for each SSD. The wiring that most of us would hide in the front of the case within empty mechanical drive bays will fit nicely behind the motherboard as there is sufficient space, but with the window I’d definitely only want a modular PSU to limit the mess.

    I’ve always liked the idea of a window and this one is big. Big enough to show all the top 2/3’s of the case including the front portion. As I’m aiming to go the silent route I’d probably have preferred, in this case, to have the solid side instead but I’m hopeful the audible difference would be minimal.
    The packaged fans come pre-fitted in the one space in the back of the case and the middle position of the three possible front positions.
    In addition, there is one floor fan space and three spaces in the ceiling. The case is specced out to accommodate water-cooling builds (with quite an accommodating number of layouts) but I’ll be sticking with air-cooling. As a result the top of the case will remain closed off for me, but it comes away quite easily in three separate sections.

    I will be adding the three Venturi fans to the front of the case and moving the fan at the front of the case to the base mainly for aesthetic reasons as the case fans are white/black but the Venturi fans are grey/dark grey.

    All in all I’m very impressed with, and thankful for, this prize and would recommend the fans for any build, and the case if it fits your needs as it’s certainly got a specific focus on what it does so I imagine it would depend upon the individual's needs. I don't need a huge amount of storage and see the open nature of the case as an aide to air flow so I'll see what the final result will be. I'm expecting this to air-cool better than many cases without a focus on water cooling. I see myself having a great time building into this over the new year and will bring a log of that build back to this thread.
    Hope you gained something from that which my esteemed fellow Hexus reviewers did not already provide.


    P.S. I have pictures, but I need to work all that out.
    I do not go all voodoo on cuddly toys.

  2. Received thanks from:

    =assassin= (08-11-2015),Bagnaj97 (10-11-2015),peterb (08-11-2015)

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    Re: And it's one more DEFINE S review - kind of...

    Great review! Thank you. (Thread moved)

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