If you are simply placing collectively a brand new gaming PC, likelihood is that you could’t keep away from that is festooned with RGB LEDs. With little to distinguish between merchandise, it appears motherboards, graphics playing cards, RAM, and now even SSDs are being blinged out lately. Some folks would possibly in fact bury these parts inside opaque containers beneath their desks and neglect about them, however others will certainly wish to present them off. Antec is concentrating on the latter demographic with its new Dark Fleet sequence of cupboards. They aren’t too costly, which signifies that even price range consumers can get in on the enjoyable.
At first look, the DF-500 and DF-500 RGB with their huge glass facet panels look like they may very well be the proper methods to place some vibrant on show. The distinction between them is that the marginally dearer DF-500 RGB comes with three 120mm RGB LED followers already screwed into its entrance panel. Frankly, given the emphasis on exhibiting off, we do not know why a non-RGB model of this case even exists. We have the DF-500 RGB in for assessment in the present day, and we will inform you whether or not it is ok to be a showpiece in your desk.
Antec Dark Fleet DF-500 RGB design
This is a surprisingly compact cupboard, fairly consistent with present low-end choices. Even although the entrance moulding is all plastic, it has a slick, futuristic visor-like design that is certain to enchantment to a variety of consumers. It’s neither too minimal nor too gaudy. The solely concern we had was the massive Antec brand on the underside, which is printed in vibrant white and cheapens the look.
The majority of the entrance face is translucent with a darkish tint, which makes the blades of all three entrance followers stand out. As good because it seems, there are solely tiny gaps on the perimeters for air consumption, so we will pay shut consideration to the noise this leads to. A mesh entrance panel would have been much better for airflow. Hopefully, a number of mud will not construct up over time, as a result of it could be practically unimaginable to achieve in and clear it.
The detachable left panel is a single sheet of tempered glass, additionally with a smoky black tint. It’s held in place by 4 thumbscrews and you will have to watch out when lifting it off, as a result of it is heavier than you would possibly anticipate. The corners are sharp and uncovered. The proper panel is customary steel, with two thumbscrews on the again to maintain it in place.
Antec has chosen to place the USB and audio ports on the highest. This retains the entrance face clean, at the price of usability. It would have made sense on a bigger cupboard that sits under your desk, however this one is supposed to be on show, so you will must stretch a bit. The ports are additionally uncovered to mud. There are two customary USB three.zero ports however no Type-C, which is a pity.
Speaking of mud, there are very neat magnetic mesh panels on the highest and on the within of the entrance that may be eliminated simply for cleansing. The one on high is particularly helpful if you happen to aren’t planning to have followers or a radiator there pushing air outwards. There’s additionally a detachable mesh panel for the facility provide’s consumption fan. However, there is no safety for the massive grille on the rear.
By ditching 5.25-inch drive bays altogether and transferring the three.5-inch drive cage to under the motherboard, Antec has managed to scale back the depth of this case. It measures 480mm tall, 470mm deep and 200mm extensive. The 6.7kg weight (with out parts) is a bit a lot, however is unavoidable due to the glass.
Antec Dark Fleet DF-500 RGB inside and efficiency
Looking by the tempered glass, you will see that the underside quarter of the cupboard is successfully blanked out. We’ve seen energy provide shrouds earlier than, however on this case it is a utterly separate chamber that may solely be accessed from the alternative facet. The remainder of the cavity is totally empty.
The energy provide chamber posed an enormous drawback for us when putting in parts. It’s extraordinarily slender and you’ll solely slide your PSU in a method. Antec claims that there is as much as 200mm of clearance for a PSU, however our trusty Corsair RM650 measures solely 160mm (170mm with modular cable plugs protruding of the again) and easily couldn’t match inside. The purpose for that is the relocated three.5-inch drive cage, which blocks off the one open facet of this sealed chamber and leaves no room in any way for thick PSU cables. The cage will be slid backwards and forwards a little bit, however there’s merely nowhere for cables to go.
Thus, our PSU wouldn’t match. We needed to unscrew the drive cage utterly simply to get it into place, then disconnect all our modular cables, re-fit the cage, after which attain contained in the slender hole with two fingers to reconnect the cables one after the other. Things won’t have labored out in any respect with a non-modular PSU. We would merely have eliminated the shroud, however even that is not potential.
On high of all that, it was powerful to route cables by the 2 tiny openings within the chamber, or by the slender (non-rubber-lined) backplate holes. This is a large drawback, and PSUs do not get loads smaller. Antec can be exhibiting off promotional pictures with giant radiators and liquid cooling pumps, so there is no excuse for not having the ability to accommodate a standard-sized PSU.
With doubtlessly no three.5-inch drive bays accessible, consumers may need to make do with the 2 2.5-inch mounts on the again of the motherboard tray and two extra in the primary chamber the place a drive cage must be. We assume it is unreasonable for anybody to must ditch onerous drives utterly based mostly on cupboard design.
Luckily the remainder of our elements fitted simply advantageous, together with a Gigabyte Aorus X470 Gaming 7 Wifi motherboard, AMD Wraith Prism RGB cooler, and extra-long AMD Radeon RX Vega64 graphics card. There’s roughly 155mm of clearance for a CPU cooler so one thing tall, like our longtime favorite, the Cooler Master Hyper 212X, is not going to work. Our graphics card’s energy cables had been additionally pressed unflatteringly towards the glass facet panel.
Cable routing proved to be a giant problem, with slender backplate cutouts that had been partially lined by our motherboard and never spaced nicely sufficient. Antec contains its personal RGB LED controller which is a tiny circuit board screwed on to the again of the motherboard tray. It leads to a jumble of wires that have to be tucked away. A stiff little button on the highest panel permits you to cycle between seven strong colors and two colour-changing results. You also can plug every little thing into your personal controller or motherboard to sync the followers with the remainder of your parts.
Antec says that the three 120mm followers within the entrance will be changed with two 140mm followers. You can have the identical association on the highest, or mount a radiator there as an alternative. While the non-RGB model of this cupboard comes with a 120mm exhaust fan on the again, it is shocking that there is not one right here to assist direct airflow.
While we aren’t blissful in any respect with a few of Antec’s design choices, we do must say that this case is constructed very nicely. It would not bend or flex, and the inside is coated in black for optimum visible impact. There aren’t any sharp steel corners anyplace, and it is good to see thumbscrews and tool-free drive trays.
We intentionally selected a CPU cooler and graphics card that may get fairly loud, after which we ran a number of of our heavy benchmarks which might be recognized to emphasize any . We did not discover that the DF-500 RGB’s followers added a lot to the noise degree, however we might really feel that your complete case was getting heat. We would positively add a rear exhaust fan.
Our last concern was whether or not or not the tempered glass and plastic entrance panels would choose up scratches with extraordinary dealing with. Both appeared to outlive our dealing with over the course of per week, however we would nonetheless watch out with on a regular basis use. We would advise customers to not peel off the protecting plastic movie when first unpacking this cupboard – wait till you’re carried out constructing.
The Antec DF-500 RGB seems unimaginable in promo pictures and movies on-line, and it could be very tempting to purchase one based mostly on that alone. It guarantees high-end seems and options at an entry-level worth, however the inside design makes life very tough for PC builders and customers. We do not anticipate this sort of frustration from an organization as skilled as Antec. Ultimately, we won’t advocate this cupboard as whole-heartedly as we’d have favored. If you assume you will construct as soon as after which by no means tinker with the insides of your PC, you won’t thoughts a lot.
Price (MRP): Rs. four,750
- Looks nice
- Three 120mm RGB LED followers included
- Cramped energy provide chamber
- Insufficient cable routing provisions
- No rear exhaust fan
Ratings (Out of 5)
- Design: four
- Ease of use: 2.5
- Value for Money: three.5
- Overall: three.5
Adapted From: Gadgets360