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Corsair Carbide Series 600Q Quiet Full-Tower Enclosure Review

Manufacturer: Corsair

Introduction and First Impressions

The new Corsair Carbide 600Q and 600C enclosures are the company's first inverted ATX designs, and the layout promises improved airflow for better cooling.

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The Carbide Series from Corsair has encompassed enclosures from the company's least expensive budget-friendly options such as the $59 Carbide 100R, to high-performance options like the $159 Carbide Air 540. This new Carbide 600 enclosure is available in two versions, the 600C and 600Q, which both carry an MSRP of $149. This positions the 600C/600Q enclosures near the Graphite and Obsidian series models, but this is only fitting as there is nothing "budget" about these new Carbide 600 models.

The Carbide Series 600Q in for review differs from the 600C most obviously in its lack of the latter's hinged, latching side-panel, which also contains a large window. But the differences extend to the internal makeup of the enclosure, as the 600Q includes significant noise damping inside the front, top, and side panels. We'll be taking a close look at the noise levels along with thermal performance with this "Q" version of the new enclosure in our review.

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Continue reading our review of the Corsair Carbide Series 600Q enclosure!!

Before we take our first look at the Carbide Series 600Q enclosure we'll first check out the specs from Corsair:


Specifications

  • Form Factor: Full-Tower
  • Material: Steel
  • Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, MicroATX, ATX, E-ATX (12
  • Expansion Slots: 8
  • Drive Bays
    • (x2) 5.25 in
    • (x2) 3.5 in 
    • (x3) 2.5 in
  • Maximum GPU Length: 370 mm
  • Maximum CPU Cooler Height: 200 mm
  • Maximum PSU Length: 210 mm
  • Power Supply: ATX (not included)
  • External Connections
    • 3-Speed Fan Controller 
    • (x2) USB 3.0
    • (x2) USB 2.0 
    • (x1) Headphone Port 
    • (x1) Microphone Port
  • Fan Mount Locations
    • Front: (x2) 120/140mm 
    • Bottom: (x3) 120mm or (x2) 140mm 
    • Rear: (x1) 120/140mm
  • Dust filters for front and bottom intakes
  • Fans Included (Corsair AF140L)
    • Front: (x2) 140mm 
    • Rear: (x1) 140mm
  • Radiator Mount Locations 
    • 360mm: Bottom
    • 280mm: Front or Bottom
    • 240mm: Front or Bottom
    • 140mm: Front, Bottom, or Rear
    • 120mm: Front, Bottom, or Rear
  • Compatible Corsair Liquid Coolers: H55, H60, H75, H80i, H90, H100i, H105, H110
  • Dimensions (LxWxH): 454 mm x 260 mm x 535 mm (17.87 x 10.24 x 21.06 inches)
  • Weight: 10 kg (22.05 lbs)
  • Warranty: Two years

Our thanks to Corsair for providing the Carbide Series 600Q for our review!

First Impressions

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Out of the box the Carbide 600Q is quite an unassuming design, and depending on your taste that could be a very good thing. It surprised me at first that this is a full tower design, as the width (10.24 inches) helps create the illusion that it isn't quite as tall as it is (21.06 inches).

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The Carbide 600Q is actually dark grey, not black as it appears in some stock photos. The sides of the enclosure are plain steel, but the front and top panels are more sophisticated, adding flush mounted inset panels with a subtle metallic finish, which provide a bit of contrast.

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I/O is along the left side of the top panel, and includes USB 3.0, 3.5 mm audio, and a 3-position speed controller for the included case fans.

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The door at the top of the front panel reveals a pair of 5.25-inch drive bays for optical drives or other devices.

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This door has a very nice, smooth feel with a double-hinged construction and magnetic closure.

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Around back we see the first sign that this is an inverted ATX design; motherboard I/O is on the bottom right, rather than the upper left, and the expansion slots are near the top, beginning under the top PSU mount.

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The enclosure sits on four plastic feet with rubber ends that provide grip and help with vibration.

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There is a large magnetic screen filter down here as well, and important detail given the inverse layout (in this design the lower fans assume the role of the upper fans in most enclosures).

It may look rather plain in these photos, but my impression of the Carbide 600Q was very positive in person. It just feels like a quality enclosure, and there is some subtle detail to the design (such as the insets in the top and front panels) the help give the 600Q a more refined look.

Next we'll check out the interior.

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January 25, 2016 | 03:07 PM - Posted by John H (not verified)

Thanks for the detail as always Sebastian!

Price wise - this looks like more of a competitor to the Define R5 than the Define S. I'm curious if the R5 would be quieter than this case..

January 25, 2016 | 07:30 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

You're welcome! I haven't been able to re-test the R5 with current hardware to tell you if it's quieter.  The R5 and Define S were pretty similar when I compared them originally, with the Define S actually a little better overall.

January 25, 2016 | 06:02 PM - Posted by shawnf77

I would love a standard version of this case! Wouldn't like my gear upside down!

January 25, 2016 | 07:19 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

You're in luck - the slightly smaller, non-inverted Carbide 400 cases are a more conventional alternative. We have the windowed version (Carbide 400C) in for review!

January 25, 2016 | 07:07 PM - Posted by Lance Ripplinger (not verified)

Thank you for the detailed review! I have built systems in the Micro ATX Silverstone Temjin you mentioned in the article, plus their slightly cheaper SST-PS70B. This looks much easier to build in. Good job Corsair. My question I have is about removing the front panel to get at the dust filter though. Does the plastic of that panel feel like it will hold up over time as you remove the panel to get at the filter? Or did it feel like that it will get brittle sooner than later, and one or more of the tabs that hold the panel on break? That was one of the things I did like about the both Silverstone cases. The SST-PS70B has a swinging door on the front (that model has a plastic front instead of the Temjin's aluminum), enabling easy access to the fan filter. Shame that Corsair didn't do a better job of making the filter accessible. I think they could have incorporated a door on the front for getting at the filter.

January 25, 2016 | 07:22 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

You're welcome - and. I'm with you on the door idea. I think the Define R5 is a great recent example of a door providing access to the front filter. The tabs on the Carbide 600Q's front panel feel like they'll hold up, but only time will tell. They are fairly thick as tabs go, but there's always going to be some weakening over time.

January 26, 2016 | 03:27 AM - Posted by Hakuren

I was so sold on this one, but in the end excitement turned into total disappointment.

I'm firmly in reverse-atx camp. You won't appreciate this until you have liquid cooled system. In a instant you see if there is anything wrong inside VGA blocks (unless it's POM LOL), full cover blocks are not as extreme at sagging VGAs as in normal atx and it provides good airflow for hot items like RAID cards (it doesn't trap hot air near RoC, just the opposite). And best of all it looks really bad-ass.

Unfortunately I can't proceed with this Corsair case. Storage space is woefully inadequate, it only supports well thinest radiators of 30mm ilk (there it goes multi-port-rad option) and for my particular purposes I require at least 3x 5.25" which is no-go with this little one. I sincerely hope that Corsair release bigger brother of it. This is basically designed for AIOs, not much else.

Still thanks Sebastian for your interesting input on the matter.

January 26, 2016 | 07:54 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

I added a photo of the upper part of the case interior, absent from the review previously. The plastic shroud poses no clearance issue, however the 3.5-inch drive bays do partially block the top expansion slot. These HDD bays can be removed, and very few applications will likely require this top slot, but the review now reflects this.

March 16, 2016 | 02:16 AM - Posted by jhon fery (not verified)

i like Corsair Carbide Series 600Q . thanks for this review

my web : http://www.a-homenet.net

March 23, 2016 | 09:15 AM - Posted by Chris Ah (not verified)

What we really need is to see the 600Q against the R5 blackout....that would be epic. Would really test the benefits of inverse vs regular too.

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