CES 2008, Day 1: Antec, Arctic Cooling, and CoolIT

The Silent Front
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ANTEC (CONTINUED)

Twelve Hundred

Just when you think that it can’t get any bigger, it does. For those gamers for whom the Nine Hundred’s 9 drive bays just weren’t enough, Antec brings the super-sized 12-bay Twelve Hundred. The design is nearly identical to the Nine Hundred, with a few improvements. First, the 120mm fan on the windowed side panel now has a slide-out, removable dust filter to keep your expansion cards dust-free. Secondly, Antec has done away with the top mounted FireWire port and replaced it with an eSATA port, continuing a trend with other recent Antec product releases. Next, the hard drive cages have been upgraded in that they now have dust filters as well as built in fan controller knobs for the three 120mm fans mounted behind the mesh front. Behind the motherboard tray we find the usual fare of cable ties and pass through holes. Just like the Nine Hundred, there are fan control switches in the back for the rear and top fans, but now you can also independently control the fans’ LEDs as well.

Mini P180

Finally, we have the Mini P180, another case that debuted at Computex; it is now nearing retail availability. Again we have the eSATA front port instead of a FireWire port, and a few stylish vents implemented into the front panel. Everything about the Mini is nearly identical to the original P180, from the double removable HDD cages to the large 200mm top TriCool fan. What’s new is the mATX size. Because of the smaller size, Antec has decided to move the vertical HDD mounted rack upwards, leaving the space in front of the PSU for two 5.25” bays. That leaves one 5.25” bay at the top. Also, the Mini P180 is available not only in the classic Black color, but now White.

Signature

Outside of cases, we got to see was Antec’s new Signature series of premium power supplies. Planned as the new top-tier of Antec PSUs, the Signature series are 80-Plus certified, modular PSU’s that represent a couple of firsts for Antec PSU’s (and perhaps consumer-level PSU’s on general): The Signature Series will utilize a dual PCB layout that holds motherboard-esque DC to DC conversions in place of the conventional PSU step-down transformers, for improved stability during transient loading. Another first is the use of PWM control for the 80mm fan, as opposed to voltage ramping. Antec says that this will allow for lower fan speeds without fan stalling at idle than is possible with current designs.



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