Subject: Cases and Cooling | November 23, 2015 - 10:04 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: pandora atx, Mid-Tower Case, enclosure, case, bitfenix pandora, bitfenix, atx case
BitFenix has released a larger follow up to the Pandora enclosure, previously a slim Micro-ATX tower. The new full ATX sized Pandora offers the same styling and optional customizable screen as the previous version, and now offers support for up to 360 mm radiators.
“The Pandora ATX offers the same much-loved unique styling as the original Pandora - but with housing capabilities for full-sized hardware and a 360mm radiator, either in the top or the front. Conceived as a versatile base for DIY projects, it is designed to show off your hardware in a tasteful manner through its large side window. The front panel is like no other, with the wrap-around side panels covering parts of it, leaving only a sober glossy black front panel housing the programmable 2.8" ICON color display visible through it. The ICON is a story in itself, allowing you to add any logo or picture you wish, for maximum personalization.”
I was impressed with the original Pandora when I reviewed it at the end of last year, but there were certainly concessions to size (beginning with the restriction to mATX or mITX motherboards) including limited cooler and taller GPU support. This was in fact a very narrow tower previously. With the new Pandora ATX you can have the same style including an optional LCD with ICON software that allows drag-and-drop customization with your own image. And while some might think ICON is a gimmick, and it arguably is, this is still a solid-looking enclosure.
So what exactly does this new Pandora ATX support? Here’s a rundown of the specs:
- 2.8" BitFenix ICON Display
- One-piece PSU cover and MB tray
- Top, Front and Bottom Dust Filters
- 360mm Radiator Support
- 20mm Cable Clearance
- Graphics Card Length up to 440mm
- Materials: Steel, ABS
- Colors (Interior/Exterior): Black/Black
- Supported Motherboards: ATX, Micro ATX, Mini-ITX
- LCD: 2.8" TFT, 240 x 320 (Pandora ATX only)
- I/O: 2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, 2x 3.5mm Audio (Line Out, Mic-in)
- 3.5” Drive Bays: x4, x3 (Pandora ATX Core)
- 2.5” Drive Bays: x4, 2x (Pandora ATX Core)
- Front Cooling: 1x 140mm (Included, Pandora ATX only), Max 3x 120mm OR 2x 140mm (Not Included)
- Rear Cooling: 1x 120mm FDB Fan (Included)
- Top Cooling: Max 3x 120mm OR 2x 140mm (Not Included)
- Expansion Slots: x7
- Power Supply: ATX & EPS, up to 220mm length
- Dimensions (WxHxD): 203 x 510 x 558 mm
- Weight: 9.92 kg (net), 11.4 kg (gross)
It seems that the only thing we don’t know about this new enclosure is pricing and availability, which have not yet been released.
Subject: General Tech | December 31, 2014 - 05:35 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: video, Samsung, podcast, nvidia, Lian Li, LG, Intel, gigabyte, g-sync, freesync, drobo, bitfenix, asus, amd, acer, 850 EVO
PC Perspective Podcast #331 - 12/31/2014
Join us this week as we discuss our Hardware Picks of the Year, Acer's 1080p G-SYNC Display, a new Drobo and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the Store
- RSS - Subscribe through your regular RSS reader
- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano, and Sebastian Peak
Program length: 1:54:53
Podcast topics of discussion:
Week in Review:
Ken is an idiot, don't try to use the Hyper 212 Evo in the Air 240.
News items of interest:
PC Perspective Hardware Picks of the Year
Graphics Card of 2014
Winner: GTX 970
GTX TITAN Z (lulz)
R9 295 X2
Runner-up: GTX 750 Ti
CPU of 2014
Winner: Core i7-4790K
Core M 5Y70 (Broadwell-Y)
AMD AM1 Athlon 5350
AMD A8-7600 Kaveri APU
Runner-up: Athlon X4 860K
Storage of 2014
Samsung 850 Pro
Winner: Samsung 850 EVO
Runner-up: Intel P3700
Intel SSD 730 Series
Silicon Motion SM2246EN (Force LX, Angelbird ssd wrk, Adata 610)
Case of 2014
Winner: NCASE M1
Runner-up: Corsair Carbide Air 240
Fractal Design Define R5
SilverStone Raven RVZ01
PHT Ultra Low-Profile HTPC Case
Motherboard of 2014
Runner-up: ASUS Crossblade Ranger FM2+
ASUS Z97 Deluxe
Gigabyte Z97X Gaming G1 Black Edition
Winner: Z97 Maximus VII Formula
Price Drop of 2014
Winner: AMD R9 290X/290
R9 295 X2
GTX Titan Z (lulz)
Runner-up: SSDs (again)
Best Trend of 2014
Variable Refresh Rate Monitors / Tear-free Gaming
Runner-up: PCIe/NVMe storage
Winner: 21:9 Monitors
Worst Trend of 2014
Locked GPU Voltages
Winner: 840 Evo Performance Issues
Runner-up: G-SYNC Monitor prices
GPU Mining BitCoins
Introduction, Specs, and First Impressions
BitFenix has been making enclosures for the PC market since 2010 (with the massive Colossus E-ATX case), and came to prominence a couple of years later with the introduction of the Prodigy enclosure. While the company has expanded to produce power supplies and peripherals they are still primarily a case manufacturer, as evidenced by the now 31 different models on their product page. Not content to iterate on their existing designs, BitFenix has consistently introduced new chassis ideas for different form-factors and needs.
We reviewed the Colossus Micro-ATX case back in March, and it is again an enclosure built for the venerable micro-ATX form-factor that we’re looking at here. Quite the opposite of the Colossus Micro-ATX's squat design, the Pandora is smooth and very slim.
In the world of computer cases there are many variations, but they are mostly boxes with splashes of style and the occasional window. Companies like In Win are at the opposite end of the spectrum, but the design choices for a case with commitment to artistic intent often entail a considerable price tag, and In Win consistently prices itself out of the mainstream market. So what about the middle ground? Enter the BitFenix Pandora. It boasts eye-catching looks, a slim design that seems even more so given the curved panels, and even has a color LCD screen that can be programmed with the image file of your choice!
The Pandora features a programmable color LCD display, to which I affixed this incredible logo
I don’t want to dissolve into meaningless superlatives, but the Pandora is a striking design. When it was shown at Computex earlier in 2014 it was listed as a mini-ITX enclosure, and while it definitely supports mini-ITX motherboards it is the final product’s micro-ATX support that we focus on in this review. And while it would have been large as a mini-ITX enclosure the Pandora is fairly small as an mini-ATX case, most notably due to that slim profile. This comes at a price, as there won’t be as much room for storage with such a narrow width (and those looking for any optical drive support must look elsewhere). And speaking of price, while the "core" version of the case starts at around $110, this version with programmable display is currently selling for just under $160. Steep, but not outrageous either.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | August 22, 2014 - 09:03 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: prodigy m, mATX, bitfenix
In response to customer feedback, BitFenix has announced new color options and optional windowed side panels for its Prodigy M chassis. New versions of the Micro ATX case will be available later this month in Fire Red, Atomic Orange, Vivid Green, and Cobalt Blue with or without a case window (which can also be available separately). The new color choices join the existing Arctic White and Midnight Black Prodigy M cases.
The Prodigy M (including the new color versions) is essentially a larger version of the Prodigy chassis intended to support Micro ATX motherboards and dual graphics cards. BitFenix's steel and plastic Prodigy M chassis measures 250mm x 404mm x 359mm (~9.8"x15.9"x14.1") and features the company's "FyberFlex" flexible carrying handles on the top and bottom (the bottom handles do double duty as case feet) and SofTouch exterior finish. Two audio jacks, two USB 3.0 ports, and a single externally-accessible 5.25" drive bay round out the external I/O.
The case comes bundled with two 120mm Spectre fans installed in the rear and bottom fan mounts. Beyond that, users can add a slim 240mm radiator (27mm thick with a single GPU installed) up top and swap out the included rear fan for a larger 140mm model.
The Prodigy M supports Mini ITX and Micro ATX motherboards, a bottom mounted power supply up to 160mm long, CPU coolers up to 160mm tall (with the storage rack installed), and graphics cards as long as 320mm (there are five PCI slots in total). Using the bottom case mounts, users can have two 3.5" drives and two 2.5" drives. Additionally, users can install the removable storage rack (which mounts above the motherboard for an extra two 3.5" drives and three 2.5" drives. There is also a 5.25" drive bay which could house additional storage drives with the right adapter.
BitFenix also announced the availability of windowed side panels that come in each of the six case colors. The windowed side panels will be sold along with windowed versions of the Prodigy M case or as a separate purchase that customers can add to their existing black or white Prodigy M.
The new Prodigy M Color cases will be available later this month for around $100. There is no word on pricing for the individual windowed side panels, however.
It is nice to see BitFenix responding to customer feedback, and the new colorful cases seem to be a welcome update to the series.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | June 13, 2014 - 11:31 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: enclosure, computex 2014, computex, cases, bitfenix pandora, bitfenix atlas, bitfenix aegis, bitfenix
Yes, Computex is over - and in its wake we’re still left with a ton of new product announcements. Three of these come from BitFenix, who unveiled new enclosures at their booth in Taipei last week.
The first is the BitFenix Atlas, which has incorporated some interesting design features including what they are calling “swappable chambers” and a “test-mode motherboard tray”. (Could this be an open test-bench feature?)
The design is very interesting (a bit along the lines of the Corsair Carbide Air 540), and the extra width allows for no less than ten 3.5” hard drive bays behind the motherboard tray! The Atlas also has six 2.5” bays for SSDs, and features a full array of dust filters and nifty RGB lighting.
Next we’ll look at the Aegis, a sleek minitower enclosure.
The Aegis supports micro-ATX and mini-ITX motherboards and features water cooling support and a built in fan controller. In addition to 240/280mm radiator support on the top, the Aegis also boasts 360mm radiator support up front.
Finally we have the Pandora, which in addition to streaming music (as I’ve been informed) is also apparently a PC case that looks like part of a stormtrooper’s armor.
Besides protecting imperial troops from rebel attacks, the Pandora offers a stylish take on a mini-ITX tower design and offers support for full-size ATX power supplies and (presumably) liquid cooling via two pairs of 120mm fan mounts.
No specifics on pricing or availability from BitFenix on these three new enclosures just yet, but expect them this year as they are part of the 2014 BitFenix catalog.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 30, 2014 - 12:16 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Power Supplies, modular psu, bitfenix
BitFenix, well known among system builders for their sizeable lineup of enclosures, today announces a new line of power supplies. The “Fury” PSU’s are will be offered in 550W, 650W, and 750W versons, and feature 80 PLUS Gold certification. What’s special about them? They come pre-sleeved with braided cables for a custom look.
TechPowerUp has a review of the 750 watt model up, and though the power supply performed respectably they had reservations on the reported MSRP of $169 (though no official prices have been released). BitFenix says the PSU’s will carry a 5-year warranty, which should make investing in the Fury a bit more palatable.
Not interested in shelling out for a fancy-looking PSU just yet? The folks at Performance-PCs.com are already offering a giveaway on their Facebook page.
The Fury line is set to be released in May, and we’ll see soon enough what kind of demand there is for a PSU with a premium on style in a very crowded market.
The BitFenix Fury Power Supply Series delivers a trifecta of performance, reliability, and aesthetics like no other PSU before it. From the brushed aluminum accents and stamped BitFenix logos, to the metallic fan grill and powder coated exterior, Fury is the first PSU designed to not be hidden away, but shown off. The semi-modular design allows for better cable management, and the cables themselves are sleeved with Alchemy sleeving for a premium look. Beyond good looks, Fury delivers the performance and reliability demanded by today's modern hardware with 80Plus Gold certification, single-rail power delivery, and active power factor correction. Equipped with exclusive BitShield™ Six-Point Protection and a five-year warranty, users can count on Fury to power their systems day-in and day-out.
Nanosleeve™ Braided Cables
With an ultra-dense weave and superb flexibility, the Nanosleeve braiding found on our Alchemy cable extensions is the premier choice of the world's top modders. The cable that come with Fury are pre-sleeved with this exact sleeving - no more voiding your warranty and spending hours sleeving cables yourself. With Fury, you get that premium modded look straight out-of-the-box.
Introduction, Packaging, and Specifications
The BitFenix Colossus has grown into a family of enclosures, from the massive E-ATX original all the way down to their diminutive mini-ITX version. But somewhere in between there lies a case offering some impressive flexibility, while still retaining a small footprint.
As the PC industry has evolved over the last decade, the days of high-performance rigs requiring large towers and full-size ATX and E-ATX motherboards are gone. Of course there is still a market (and need) for full tower systems, and the majority of enthusiast motherboards available are still full ATX. But the evolution in process technology and platforms has allowed for more and more to be done within a smaller footprint, and the micro-ATX form factor has emerged as a solid option for anything from budget systems to extreme multi-GPU gaming powerhouses. Regardless of the path you choose, all of those sweet components need a home, and finding the right computer case has long been a very personal odyssey.
BitFenix entered the PC enclosure market in 2010 with the original Colossus, and since then they have grown into a respected brand with a large and differentiated product offering. From that first massive Colossus to the popular Prodigy mini-ITX, they have created an enclosure for just about any build. And while many cases specialize in one or two particular areas, once in a while you will find an enclosure that just begs for experimentation. The micro-ATX variant of the Colossus from BitFenix is just such a case. Every aspect of this small enclosure has been given a close look by BitFenix, and there are options galore for a variety of builds.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | June 27, 2013 - 04:23 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ronin, mid-tower, bitfenix
PC Chassis manufacturer BitFenix has launched its new Ronin mid-tower ATX case. It will be available in July and carries a clean matte black aesthetic with many of the useful features that enthusiasts expect to see in today’s cases.
The BitFenix Ronin measures 270 x 560 x 530mm (approximately 10.6 x 22 x 20.9-inches), and is constructed of steel and plastic. BitFenix uses its “SoftTouch” micro texture surface treatment to give the matte black exterior a unique look and feel. The exterior is all matte black with an acrylic side window. A mesh design is used along the top and front panels, and aids in ventilation. The case uses rounded corners. The front panel IO is actually on the top-front of the case and includes two USB 3.0, two USB 2.0, and two audio ports along with the requisite power button. Other than that, the case is rather simplistic in design, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
The case can accommodate ATX, Micro ATX, and Mini-ITX motherboards. Internal features include tool-less drive cages, filtered front and bottom intake fan filters, cable management and CPU backplate cut-outs, water cooling grommets, and a bottom mounted power supply. BitFenix is also offering a piece of material that will cover up the PSU and drive cages to hide the drives and cables from the side window view.
The case can host up to three 5.25” drives and six 2.5” or 3.5” hard drives. There are 7 PCI slots and plenty of ventilation spots for fans. Specifically, cooling options include two bundled 120mm Spectre fans. Users can further expand the air cooling by adding the following fan(s).
- Top: 2 x 140mm
- Front: 2 x 120mm
- Bottom: 1 x 120mm
- Rear: 1 x 120mm
Further, when removing a drive bay, users can use up to 420mm long graphics cards.
The BitFenix Ronin will be available next month for an as-yet-announced price. For reference, it's model number is BFC-RON-300-KKWSK-RP. More information can be found here.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | November 28, 2012 - 01:11 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: white, portable case, case, bitfenix, atx
BitFenix recently announced a new mid-tower computer chassis aimed at gamers and enthusiasts that want a portable PC that easily hosts a full ATX motherboard. Specifically, BitFenix has taken its Survivor case and made an edition clad in white that it has dubbed the Survivor White.
The case features a carrying handle that folds down into the top of the case when not in use, making it easier to carry to LAN parties. It is completely white minus a blue LED-lit BitFenix logo on the front, and features curved edges. There is space for two 200mm fans or three 120mm fans around the case. Also, the new Survivor has three 5.25” expansion bays, holes for passing water cooling tubes though the back panel, a bottom mounted power supply cutout, dust filters, and a hidden IO panel. The front IO includes the power and reset buttons, two USB 2.0 ports, two USB 3.0 ports, microphone and headphone jacks, and a single eSATA port. It also has on/off controls for the LED light for the BitFenix logo and for any BitFenix Spectre Pro LED fans (not included).
On the inside of the Survivor-series chassis, you will find a removable hard drive cage, CPU cutout on the motherboard tray, and cable management grommets. The inside of the case is the same white color as the outside, and the hard drive cage features tool-less mounting brackets. These are all things that are coming standard on enthusiast cases these days, but are nice to see nonetheless (especially for the price). With the hard drive cage installed, the case can hold up to seven 2.5” SSDs or six 3.5” hard drives.
BitFenix has stated that the white colored Survivor case will be available at the end of November for $109 USD or 99€ (including 19% VAT).
What do you think about the new Survivor SKU?
Subject: Cases and Cooling | October 19, 2012 - 06:22 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: bitfenix, Hydra Pro, Recon, fan controller
One of the best ways to bring down the noise your system generates without switching to alternate cooling methods is to install a fan controller in your system so that you can control the speed your fans run at and slow them when you don't need the extra cooling. Hardware Canucks finished a video review of two fan controllers from BitFenix, the basic five channel Hydra Pro and the Internet enabled, touch screen Recon which offers far more control than the analog Hydra Pro. Neither controller costs more than $50, check out the review and see which would fit your system best.
"Fan controllers may not be a marquee item within many enthusiasts’ systems but the power they grant over airflow within a case cannot be underestimated. BitFenix's Hydra Pro and Recon controllers hail from very different ends of the spectrum but they both grant end users complete control over their system fans."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Cooler Master Hyper 412 PWM and Deepcool GAMMAXX 400 Coolers
- SilverStone Heligon Series HE01 CPU Cooler Review @ HardwareHeaven
- Be Quiet! Dark Rock 2 CPU Cooler Review @ eTeknix
- Reeven Kelveros (RC-1202) CPU Cooler Review @ eTeknix
- Zalman CNPS14X Lower Noise Heatsink Review @ Frostytech
- SilverStone HE02 CPU Cooler Review @ Hardware Secrets
- Xigmatek Dark Knight SD1283 Night Hawk Ed. Ceramic Coated Heatsink Review @ Frostytech
- Zalman CNPS9900DF Dual Fan Flower Heatsink @ Silent PC Review
- SilverStone Heligon HE02: Monster Fanless CPU Cooler @ Silent PC Review
- Cooler Master Hyper 412 Slim CPU Cooler Review @ eTeknix
- Zalman CNPS9900DF @ Frostytech
- Noctua NF-F12 PMW 120mm Fan @ lanOC Reviews
- Swiftech MCR240-QP "Quiet Series" Dual 140mm Radiator @ Tweaktown
- Swiftech Apogee Drive II Integrated Pump and Waterblock @ Tweaktown
- Cougar Challenger Mid Tower @ Kitguru
- Enermax Ostrog Mid-Tower PC Chassis Review @ eTeknix
- CM Storm Scout 2 Case Review @ OCC
- Nanoxia Deep Silence 1 @ Guru of 3D
- In-Win GRone Full Tower Chassis Review @ Legit Reviews
- Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced @ LanOC Reviews
- NZXT Phantom 820 Full Tower Case Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- NZXT Phantom 820 Full-Tower Chassis Review @ eTeknix
- Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced @ Kitguru
- NZXT Phantom 820 Case Review: Everything, Everything @ AnandTech
- Lian li PC-Q25 ITX Case @ XSReviews
- Nanoxia Deep Silence 1 @ techPowerUp
- Fractal Design Node 304 Mini-ITX PC Chassis Review @ eTeknix
- Cougar Challenger ATX @ SSD Review
- Cougar Challenger Mid-Tower ATX Gaming Case Review @ HCW
- In Win H-Frame Case Review @ Hardware Secrets
- Xigmatek Pure Black Asgard Pro Case Review @ Pro-Clockers
- BitFenix Prodigy @ Bjorn3D
- Nanoxia Deep Silence 1 Mid-Tower Chassis Review @ eTeknix