I always like companies that listen to customer feedback and improve existing products. Now I myself never had the opportunity to check out the original Define XL I have gone and looked at reviews and information on the case. The Define XL R2 addresses some issues that were present in the original case. The two biggest were the lack of top fan mounts and very poor watercooling support. Other additions include the fan controller, new internal design, more expansion slots and the hard drive bay configuration.
Starting off with cooling Fractal Design does include three 140mm fans. That should be more than adequate for most systems out there. If you need more cooling there is room for 4 more fans. The three fans can be easily controlled by the included fan controller. If you decide to go the watercooling route you can fit a 240mm radiator in the front and a 240mm or 280mm slim radiator at the top.
This case is designed to be silent and it really is. During operation with the fans on medium or low you could not really hear that much at all. Although when you had they on high they were audible. Helping aid in silent operation is sound dampening material on both side panels and the front door of the case. You have the ModuVent system on the top fan mounts and the side panel fan mount. There are vibration dampening rubber grommets on the hard drive bays and on the power supply mount. So if you want a quiet system this is a great choice for it.
Let’s talk about what all you can fit inside this case. First off this case supports larger motherboard like E-ATX and XL-ATX. While XL-ATX motherboard support has grown over the past year the list of XL-ATX cases is still not very large at all. There is room for four optical drives and up to 8 hard drives (2.5-inch or 3.5-inch). Have a long video card or large CPU cooler? This case can handle it no problem at all! Working in a large case means your installation should be quite simple because there is a lot of room to work with. This is very true with this case and I did not encounter a single issue during installation.
There really is nothing I can say bad about this case. If you want a sleek case with lots of room inside and is quality-made then the Fractal Design Define XL R2 is the right case for you! Right now it is selling at my favorite online retailer for $129.99, which is a great price for a full tower case. Overall ThinkComputers gives the Fractal Design Define XL R2 case a 10 out of 10 score and our Recommended Award!
- Lots of room inside
- Support for XL-ATX motherboards
- Easy installation
- Many “quiet” case features
- Watercooling support
- None that I found