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Fractal Design Core 3300 Review


Fractal Design Core 3300: Working Components

Removing the side panels just requires two thumb screws to be removed before the panel comes off. Once removed, the interior is now fully exposed. Inside, the chassis is very spacey (length wise) with more than enough space for the components to fit. Installation of up to 430mm video cards is possible, which covers nearly all video cards currently on the market. unfortunately, anything over 255mm (10") will interfere with any traditional 3.5" hard drive installed (explained in detail later). Clearance for the CPU cooler limitation isn't as severe as the video card, clocking in at 185mm height limit, which allows practically any aftermarket CPU cooler on the market.



Next you can see two 5.25" bays that require screws. No tool-less setup in this chassis at all, which is a bit of a step back from most chassis I have seen, but not far from the rest of Fractal Design other chassis. Installation was basic with zero problems. Though just like many chassis, if the optical drive isn't long enough, you will have to use flat SATA connectors rather than the numerous 90-degree angled ones included with each motherboard.


Fractal Design has changed it up by removing the hard drive cages in the Core X3 chassis. Installation of either 2.5" or 3.5" hard drives require removing the bracket first before installing anything. The bracket itself is held in by two thumb screws on top and one below the chassis. Up to three drives can be installed, with 2.5" on the top and 3.5" behind the bracket. The downside of this setup is, any video card over 255mm (10") will interfere with at least one of the hard drives if installed. A small bonus that almost went unnoticed, is the fact at up to two 2.5" drives can be installed behind the motherboard tray. These must be installed before the motherboard as the mounts are directly underneath the tray.



Here it is! All assembled and ready to go. Installation of the components was basic and didn't require any deep thought or a quick read in the manual besides the hard drive bracket. I admit, the bracket stumped me for a minute as I peered in originally and didn't see any hard drive cages. Otherwise, the generous 22mm space behind the motherboard tray, made hiding leftover cables a snitch. It's too bad that without a window, all this wire management and interesting hard drive bracket will go unnoticed, though that's what other chassis are for as not everyone wants or for that window.

  1. Fractal Design Core 3300: Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Fractal Design Core 3300 Closer Look: The Case
  3. Fractal Design Core 3300 Closer Look: Working Components
  4. Fractal Design Core 3300: Specifications & Features
  5. Fractal Design Core 3300: Testing: Setup & Results
  6. Fractal Design Core 3300: Conclusion
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