Author: Bob Buskirk
Well first off let’s say it’s finally good to see a new series from Antec! I know many people have been waiting for a while for this. I know ever since CES in January we have been waiting to get our hands on this case!
The Dark Fleet series is something definitely new for Antec. Not only are they bringing a lot more style to this line of cases they have quite a lot of bling too with the 5 red LED fans! The 3 fans on the front really bring a lot of attention to this case and they are probably my favorite part. Now don’t think because this case is more stylish than previous Antec cases that it lacks the quality we are used to seeing in Antec cases. This case is quality made and will last.
Antec has done a lot to bring their internal design up to date. They were using the same internal design for quite some time. The biggest change is the hard drive setup. They took those large cages and replaced them with a very easy to install Fleet Swap system. This system not only is tool-less, but also makes swapping drive out extremely easy. This case also does not have those cooling isolation zones. While those are good for cooling, they really make installation hard and make it really hard to do good cable management. Just like all new cases the DF-85 also has a CPU cutout for installing after-market CPU coolers, cable routing holes and a 2.5-inch hard drive placement. Another great feature added to this case is the USB 3.0 connection on the front.
Just because this case does not have the cooling zones like some of the previous Antec cases does not mean that it lacks cooling. With a total a 7 fans and the option for 1 more there is more than enough cooling inside of this case! Also I like that the front fans have the fan controller knobs right on them for easy adjustments.
The only real problem I found with this case is that you cannot install an optical drive in the top 5.25-inch drive bay because the top 140mm fan gets in the way. So if for some reason you have 3 optical drives you are out of luck installing all of them in this case.
Right now this case sells for $189.99 from my favorite online retailed. This is what you would expect to pay for any new full tower case with all of the features that the DF-85 offers. Overall ThinkComputers gives the Antec Dark Fleet DF-85 Full Tower Case a 9 out of 10 score and our Recommended Award!
- Awesome new design
- Tons of cooling (7 included fans)
- External 2.5-inch SATA dock
- USB 3.0 front connection
- Room for 9 hard drives
- Fan blocks top 5.25-inch drive bay