Antec DF-85 Reviewairman - September 1, 2010
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As far as my expectations went with the Antec DF-85, every one of them was met. Antec did a great job with the engineering of the DF-85, as its design offers plenty of features, space, and cooling capabilities. Antec chose not to use tool-less drive bays in this case, and its reasoning for this is to cut down on noise and to ensure peace of mind as far as the security of users' components go. The wire management capabilities in the DF-85 are plentiful, and it has loads of cutouts and other accommodations just for wire management. There are small loops for attaching the included wire ties over the back of the motherboard and behind the hard drive cages. The hot swappable drive bays are a nice feature, and offer customization with the ability to swap their positions and even remove them if necessary. The top 2.5" SATA cradle is a unique feature, though may not be used by many. It could probably be removed if the user wishes, but it would probably be more trouble to remove it than to just leave it there. The included fans move plenty of air and do it relatively quietly. Antec thought of those who may be more sensitive to the noise and installed individual, variable fan speed controllers for the front 120mm intake fans, and individual two-speed controllers for the four top and rear exhaust fans.
As far as performance goes, the Antec DF-85 performed right on top with the other high end cases. With an additional 120mm side intake fan over the graphics card(s) and chipset, I am sure that the DF-85 would have been a top performer in every test. Unfortunately, however, as I find with just about every other case with a heatsink mounting bracket access hole, the cutout on the DF-85 is also not in the correct position for the MSI X58 SLI Platinum motherboard used in this test. I really hope manufacturers will catch onto this and start increasing the size or simply moving these cutouts to fit all common motherboards. Overall, for a high end case, the Antec DF-85 is a solid performer with plenty to offer. For computer enthusiasts with deep pockets in the market for a new case with plenty of space and loads of cooling capacity, the DF-85 is an excellent choice.
- Loads of space
- Cools very well - seven included variable speed fans
- Removable and washable fan filters
- Four removable/interchangeable hot swap SATA hard drive bays
- Grommets for external water cooling loop