Author: Bob Buskirk
Dark Fleet DF-85 Overview
As I said the DF-85 is a full tower case so it is larger than many of the other cases we have taken a look at lately. The DF-85 comes in all black and currently that is the only color available. I really don’t think they will be coming out with any other colors for this case. The case is made of SECC steel so it is not the lightest case coming in at 24.2lbs without any hardware in it at all.
Starting at the front of the case it looks like nothing you have seen from Antec before. There are 3 5.25-inch external drive bays that are covered with these lever handles. They really do not do much; they are just there for show. They easily unlatch from the front of the case and slide out. You will need to slide them out every time you need to use your optical drive or other 5.25-inch device. This may be an issue for some people but I rarely use my optical drive.
At the top of the case you will notice the front panel connections. They include headphone and microphone jacks, 3 USB 2.0 ports and 1 USB 3.0 port. Also on the sides you have the power and reset buttons, which are not that big at all. It is interesting that there is no eSATA on the front of the case as they were starting to include that on some of their other cases. Above all of the connections is a 2.5-inch hot-swappable SATA bay. This is obviously designed for solid state drive. There is a clear cover on the bay, which is pretty cool.
Moving down below the 3 5.25-inch drive bays you have 3 120mm intake fans. Each of these fans has their own fan controller located right on the front, which means you can easily adjust the speed of the fan at any time. Each of these fans is actually a door that opens to make installing your hard drives easy, but we will get into that later in the review. Each fan has an easily removable fan filter on it as well.
On the side of the case you have 2 case windows. These show most of what is inside of your case. On the smaller window there is a mount for another 120mm fan.
Moving around to the back of the case there are 2 more 120mm fans. These fans along with the 2 on the top of the case are TwoCool fans which mean they have 2 settings high and low. They are all controlled by a control panel on the back of the case. There are also 2 large holes on the back of the case with rubber fittings for water-cooling. This case also is a case that will support the CP-Series power supplies from Antec like the CP-850 that we recently reviewed.
Usually most opposite side panels on cases are plain but Antec decided to put a small “Antec Design” on the opposite side panel on the DF-85.
As we said there are 2 fans on the top of the case. These are 140mm fans and are covered with a honeycomb design. Just like all cases you have thumbscrews on each side panel so getting inside is very easy.