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Fractal Design Define S

Darksaber

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The Fractal Design Define S sports the same build quality and look as the Define family of enclosures, which we have come to love, but bears one very big difference: It is geared toward those building a custom liquid-cooling loop. With dedicated mounting possibilities for radiators, pump, and reservoir, the Define S shines where most other mid-tower cases fail by offering more than just a mounting possibility for pre-assembled liquid-cooling solutions.

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There's something wrong with the case.


There, I fixed it!
 
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There's something wrong with the case.


There, I fixed it!
That's better, it didn't look right before, all that wasted space.
 
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I love Fractal cases. So simple and functional
 
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now think what happen with HDD when shorter case !!!
Behind the motherboard and on the base of the case.
Plenty of room for SSD's and a PCI-e drive
 

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Benchmark Scores I once had +100 dorfs in DF, so yeah pretty great
I'm not a fan of vertically mounted HDD's like that. Three is better than the normal 2 though, but then there's no 5.25 bay... I usually love Fractal stuff, but this is not for me.

It looks really good though.
 
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That's better, it didn't look right before, all that wasted space.
It's wasted space for that particular reviewers-build. It's not wasted space when you want to use it to put a big reservoir or so there.
 
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It's wasted space for that particular reviewers-build. It's not wasted space when you want to use it to put a big reservoir or so there.
Exactly. That space is for thick rads with push-pull fans or mounting a vertical reservoir to the motherboard tray. This isn't designed for people running 1 GPU and an AIO CPU cooler in mind. This is Fractal's case for full custom liquid cooling loops with 3 or 4 radiators.
 

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There's something wrong with the case.


There, I fixed it!
That's better, it didn't look right before, all that wasted space.
Fail. There is a reason the front has so much extra space. its so people and run radiators + reservoir mounted to the back well with the brackets the case came with.
 
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Goddamnit, where was this case when I bought my CM690 III? Really wanted them hard drives out of the way of the airflow :(
 
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Wow, it feels like they read my mind wen i was looking at R5. (that is spooky). The only thing missing is the front door for better dust filter cleaning. If i can get this cheaper than the R5 it's going to be my next case for sure. Love it.
 
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Fail. There is a reason the front has so much extra space. its so people and run radiators + reservoir mounted to the back well with the brackets the case came with.
Yeeeaaah.... but no... The reason is that they used the same tooling from the R5, but with a different front and mid plate. You'd think it's built for complex custom water cooling loops, but it's not. In reality you can't fit triple front + triple top + single back radiators at the same time as they interfere with each other. You can have a triple on top + a dual in front, or a dual on top + a triple on front. And with that limitation in mind, most people will just ignore this case since they can do the exact same build in a Define R5 with minimal tweaking.

So Fractal disappoints this time as they've chosen to save money rather then actually design a water cooling friendly case. Fail indeed.
 

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Yeeeaaah.... but no... The reason is that they used the same tooling from the R5, but with a different front and mid plate. You'd think it's built for complex custom water cooling loops, but it's not. In reality you can't fit triple front + triple top + single back radiators at the same time as they interfere with each other. You can have a triple on top + a dual in front, or a dual on top + a triple on front. And with that limitation in mind, most people will just ignore this case since they can do the exact same build in a Define R5 with minimal tweaking.

So Fractal disappoints this time as they've chosen to save money rather then actually design a water cooling friendly case. Fail indeed.
You can definitely run a 360 in the front and 360 in the top, but the top one is limited in thickness. and who the hell would run 2 triples and a single rad.
 
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It's wasted space for that particular reviewers-build. It's not wasted space when you want to use it to put a big reservoir or so there.
This
+with 60mm rad @ push/pull, the space is gone :laugh:


Yeeeaaah.... but no... The reason is that they used the same tooling from the R5, but with a different front and mid plate. You'd think it's built for complex custom water cooling loops, but it's not. In reality you can't fit triple front + triple top + single back radiators at the same time as they interfere with each other. You can have a triple on top + a dual in front, or a dual on top + a triple on front. And with that limitation in mind, most people will just ignore this case since they can do the exact same build in a Define R5 with minimal tweaking.

So Fractal disappoints this time as they've chosen to save money rather then actually design a water cooling friendly case. Fail indeed.
I Would choose this over the R5 any day.
The clean front with no 5,25" bays alone is enough to make that choice
 
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You can definitely run a 360 in the front and 360 in the top, but the top one is limited in thickness.
you still won't have the space to mount a fan.
check: 23m35s

But It's still great value.
 
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you still won't have the space to mount a fan.
If you install a top radiator, then the fans can be mounted externally for a pull arrangement.
 
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you still won't have the space to mount a fan.
check: 23m35s

But It's still great value.
You would need to use a slim (~25mm) radiator in the top. There isn't enough room above the motherboard for a thick rad plus fans unless you mount the fans externally. They tried sticking a thick radiator in the top of the case. If they took the thin 360mm radiator that they put in the front and mounted it up top it would fit. They could then mount the thick 360mm radiator in the front with a single set of push or pull fans alongside the reservoir mounted on the motherboard tray. They could do push/pull on the thick radiator if they mounted the reservoir somewhere else like they demonstrated around 22m10s.

Here's what Fractal has posted on the product page showing the thin radiator up top:

 
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Could someone comment as to whether the Define S can fit a thick 420 rad in the front (without top radiator)? Or even better the clearence from the case floor to the ceiling?
 
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