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Thread: Antec Nine Hundred "Advanced Gaming Case" Review by afireinside

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    I am Xtreme afireinside's Avatar
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    Antec Nine Hundred "Advanced Gaming Case" Review by afireinside

    With heat output from recent components rising at a rapid rate (kentsfield and x1950 I'm looking at you) both gamers and overclockers alike are searching for the "coolest" case, both appearance and cooling wise. Antec seeks to solve this problem with the Nine Hundred "advanced gaming case" stuffed with up to FIVE 120MM FANS and a mammoth 200MM FAN at the top. Sounds pretty good, right?

    Lets look at the case:

    It comes in a nice black box with the typical Antec styling



    This case is made of steel, very sturdy construction, but also very heavy. I didn't get a chance to weigh it but it dwarfs my previous kingwin kt424 (PC65 knockoff) and super lanboy.



    First area of interest being the "mesh" front panel of NINE 5.25" drive bays and TWO 120MM fans. Both of these fans are blue LED "trispeed" fans by Antec rated for 79/56/39cfm at 30/28/25dba.



    Where's the power switch? Right here!



    Looking at the top we have the power and reset buttons, firewire, audio, and USB. There is also a tray for MP3 players, cameras, flash drives, etc to be stored. Looking back further we see the spotlight of the case, the massive 200MM blow hole. Rated for a very impressive 134/108/83fm at 30/28/24dba with a max power draw of 3.6w (.3A) at 12 volts, this is a real jaw dropper. This fan is also a "tricool" allowing you to switch fan speeds on the fly.

    Side panel



    The side panel features a small window and a 120mm intake with more mesh. Fan snaps into place easily. I chose a Yate Loon D12SL-12 for this as Antec does not include one. Also note that this window feels very flimsy and crackles when you hold the side by the windowed part.



    Included are all the screws you need, a manual, a rubber "floor" for the top tray, and a 5.25" -> 3.5" converter



    Inside shot of the beast



    The dual LED intakes along with the two 3x 5.25" -> 3x 3.5" converters



    One of the HDD converter bays along with the "wind tunnel" adapter allowing you to add ANOTHER 120mm fan (I chose another YL DS12SL-12) in lieu of putting drives in the bay to blow directly over your video cards. As you can see the front intake fan and mesh grills are attached to the HDD bays, so much for putting a radiator in the front.

    INSTALLATION

    First thing to PISS ME OFF was this:



    I don't know what retard decided it would be a good idea to make it so you have to put screws through a hole down 3/4 an inch then screw them in, but Antec needs to fire him ASAP. Luckily I use a magnetic screw driver so it wasn't THAT bad but if you don't have a magnetic screw driver, be prepared for a nightmare.





    Next there's the little 5.25" -> 3.5" external bay converter. I decided to use my fan bus. As you can see IT'S TO WIDE FOR MY FAN BUS. I can not screw both sides in. It uses the same "put screws through a hole into another hole" thing like the HDDs. Even with my magnetic screw driver this was hell. I ended up throwing the thing at the wall and giving up.

    Now the next problem, WIRING. Obviously with the PSU on the bottom this won't be fun. A picture is worth more than a thousand words in this case so I'll just give you one instead of talking.



    HDDs were hard to wire, hiding anything is impossible, and everything is super cramped. I'd never use this case again without a modular PSU. Antec apparently missed the note that putting space between the back of the mobo tray and the case wall to hide unneeded wires.



    Water cooling? DIDN'T THINK SO!



    Good luck hanging a radiator off the back. No room between fan screws and the side of the case.



    Sitting on my desk ready to rock...

    BUILD TIME: Took me over 3 hours to build. Very annoying case to work with.

    NOISE: With Antecs impressive "30dba" specs on high speed, I expected a quiet case. Especially considering I consider my DS12SL-12s "dead silent" and they're rated 28dba. WRONG. I was greeted with a very loud and deep WOOOOSH sound. I'd put the sound level on par with a 48dba delta, just not as high pitched or annoying. And that was BEFORE my 7900GTX coolers kicked in. After turning all the 120MM tri cools down to "low" and the 200MM to "medium" and booting into windows so that the nvidia drivers would spin down the cards, it was quiet. I'm not much of a silent freak, I've run 3x 48dba deltas in an open case before, 2 at 12v and 1 at 7v, but I'd say this is pretty quiet. If you're an absolute nut about noise you might want to look elsewhere though.

    For reference I'm running 11 fans:
    3x Antec tricool @ "low"
    1x Antec tricool 200MM @ "medium"
    2x Yate Loon DS12SL-12 @ 12v
    AMD stock fan
    2x Nvidia 7900GTX coolers
    Foxconn C51XEM2AA stock cooler
    OCZ 700 watt gameXstream PSU

    Conclusion: This case sucks. Easily the WORST CASE I HAVE EVER WORKED WITH. Between the nightmare drive bays, the cable routing hell, 3hr+ build time, and all the other annoyances I can safely say I'd never buy, use, or recommend this case under any circumstances even though the cooling IS AMAZING. As far as a FRUSTRATION FACTOR I'd give this a 10/10 in that category.

    Cooling: Airflow through the case is superb. The 200mm fan really helps to keep the the mobo cool while the 120mm "wind tunnel" and 120mm side intake keep your graphics cards nice and chilly, great for SLI. My GTOs temps are slightly better now than they were sitting on my desk with a 130cfm delta @ 7v blowing over them! 10/10 for cooling.

    Aesthetics: With a sleek black appearance, an all mesh front, blue LED fans, and a 200mm blow hole, this thing SCREAMS badass. The tacky side window/fan combo, stupid looking "tray" at the top, and lack of ANY way to route wires kill anything the case had going for it though. 4/10.

    Value: Well it's a case, you can put a computer in it, it keeps that computer VERY cool. I guess that scores it some points. I picked this case up for $98 dollars at Provantage.com (great site) and for 98 dollars, I was expecting something that I wouldn't have to throw across the room in anger. If you can put up with the long list of flaws it may or may not be worth the price tag. 6/10.

    Final score: 20/30 - 10/10 frustration factor = 10/30 or 33%. Come on Antec, I do better than that on math tests. Bottom line is this case has great potential but Antec dropped the ball. If they made a new revision that was longer so that the damn drives didn't cramp and wider with room behind mobo tray for wire managment, maybe it would be good. In it's current state, the Antec Nine Hundred is "meh" at best.
    Last edited by afireinside; 10-28-2006 at 10:26 PM.
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  2. #2
    I am Xtreme NickS's Avatar
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    Great review man. Very enjoyable to read. I'm sure with 30+ zipties you could get wiring under control, but it shouldn't have to go to that extent.

    You're right, it seems like a "meh," case.
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    Xtreme Enthusiast Noob-ftw's Avatar
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    Great review, thanks for being the guinea pig =-)

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    Xtreme Enthusiast Sheik's Avatar
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    Also the NVIDIA 8800GTX is rumoured to be 28CM long so I'm guessing there is no way it's going to fit in there either ?

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    I am Xtreme afireinside's Avatar
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    G80 should fit IF you don't have the "wind tunnel" in the HDD bays or any HDDs.
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  6. #6
    Xtreme Enthusiast Sheik's Avatar
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    I almost sold my Antec P160 and got this case last week. Really glad I didn't now even though I love Antec cases.

    Thanks for your honest review. Good one.

  7. #7
    Xtreme Cruncher WesM63's Avatar
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    Thanks for the good review AFI! What a ty case, i'll stick with my Ultra Aluminus that the only downfall i see with it is the shotty aluminum. (changing hardware often results in stripped screw holes)
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    Xtreme Member dig412's Avatar
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    Thanks for a review where you actually review it, not just spout out stats and say its great
    Check out my benchmarking program here.

  9. #9
    Xtreme Enthusiast DTU_XaVier's Avatar
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    I was also considering this case, mainly because of the many 120mm fan spots as well as the 200mm... What stopped me was, like you, the wierd positioning of the PSU, which would make it impossible for me to even plug in my P4 connecter...
    Also, you complain that watercooling isn't possible... The case definitely isn't built for watercooling in the first place, so that's not a minus IMHO

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    Great Review. The case looks very promising.
    Thanks

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    Xtreme Addict eddieate's Avatar
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    Good review, thanks :thumbsup:
    I want that 200mm for my stacker
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  12. #12
    Xtreme Addict Nazu's Avatar
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    That's one crappy case Didn't expect this kind of quality from Antec, who has done many great cases before this like P150, P160 and P180.
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  13. #13
    I am Xtreme NickS's Avatar
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    Welp, theres always a hump in the road somewhere with manufacturers product lines. I guess this ones it.
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    Xtreme Member LordofDoom's Avatar
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    Is it Full Tower? A full tower version could possibly be easier to work with.

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    I am Xtreme NickS's Avatar
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    Well it has 9x 5.25" bays, so I think it's inbetween a full tower & a mid tower tbh.
    Core i3-550 Clarkdale @ 4.2GHz, 1.36v (Corsair A50 HS/F) LinX Stable
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    Xtreme Member LordofDoom's Avatar
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    Maybe they should make it the size of the 2000B or TJ-07

  17. #17
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    Thank you for the extremely honest review. I looked up a few reviews for the case and so far all the reviewers like it. I guess it is always better to get a review from a user than just a reviewer.
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    I am Xtreme Revv23's Avatar
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    AFI, i was thinking the same stuff when i was looking at it, sorry you have to bite the bullet.

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    really good review,thanks for letting us know about it.

  20. #20
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    nice review. but my experiences with the box is a little different.

    1. as i was able to tuck the wiring away pretty decently. and i am using the same psu as the above. but the bottom mounts psus can be a pain.

    2. only thing i did different is i didnt use as many hdds as i have a home server for that. dont like the added heat in my main rig.

    3. and i didnt need the hdd cages either because i was only using a single hdd. and the two front fans were enough for good air circulation.

    4. only about one hour assembly time for me. but i did only using a single hdd, dual dvdr's and one gpu.

    but some things that i do agree on is the mounting screws for the drives. a magnetic screwdrive is needed.

    and the fan speeds are only controlled from inside the case.

    will add some pics in a few of my set up.

  21. #21
    I am Xtreme afireinside's Avatar
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    I'd like to see where you tucked your wires. Then again having a single HDD, 1 gfx, and no molex on the mobo makes it a lot easier. I'm sure I could have done a bit better but I got to the point where I didn't care and that it would suck no matter what. With a modular PSU it wouldn't be as bad. I'd never use a single HDD though, NEED RAID.
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    Xtreme X.I.P. irev210's Avatar
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    The build quality of this case sucks. It seems to be made in a different factory from where the P180 is made.

    I received the case and a screw was jamed in a hole, threads stripped... metal is thinner than P180, just overall lower quality.

    I recommend waiting for the P190 guys, this thing could have ROCKED, but just falls short.


    Thanks ANTEC... I bought your fusion for my media center, you had me buy the P180... it rocked, and the nine hundred... you lost me. Please do better guys! dont take those short cuts.

  23. #23
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    Thanks for the honest review. The only "good" thing is that I'm sure Antec will perfect something with this kind of air cooling capability by the time I get ready to build my next computer.

    I really like the 200mm on the top rather than the side (like with the Armor)

  24. #24
    Xtreme Addict thunderstruck!'s Avatar
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    Very nice and thorough review AFI. I hope to read more reviews from you. I think antec should release a nice full tower. I'm sick of these cramped, non-w/c friendly cases. I think I will still get a Stacker 810/STC-01 (w/e it's called ).
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  25. #25
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    Nice review there AFI. Seems as if my predictions for this case are quite true, it doesn't appear to be nice to work with at all, and it looks quite "cheap" as well.

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