P180-General Comments/Suggestions

Enclosures and acoustic damping to help quiet them.

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Lubb
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Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2005 11:11 am
Location: IL-USA

P180-General Comments/Suggestions

Post by Lubb » Sun Sep 04, 2005 10:41 am

There are other various threads with fitting particular parts in the P180, so this is more of a general discussion of what hardware the case comes with as-is.
Overall the case is very good, but a couple things did work poorly IMO:

Firstly--I don't like the fans theselves. They only have two-wire tails (no speed monitoring) and only have 4-pin (IDE-type) power plugs--so they don't directly attach to most fan controller units. At least, they should have regular 3-wire, 3-pin plugs, and then have 4-pin IDE adaptors that fit onto that. Of course you can't please everyone and Antec could probably put any brand in there and somebody wouldn't like it--but if someone is picky enough to spend $140 for an empty ATX case, they are probably pretty picky about their cooling options as well. The included fans aren't particularly noisy, the problem is that they don't have the plugs to hook up to common fan-controller hardware.
If the OEM cost of the tri-cool fans is very low perhaps they could be considered as throw-aways, but I don't really like the idea of paying for a part I know I'm immediately going to swap out anyway. The situation might be better off with no fans included and the price dropped accordingly. I don't think I have read of anyone "complaining" that they had to pick a power supply because one wasn't included; I doubt you'd get much argument over picking fans as well.

Secondly--I don't like the fan grilles. Specifically--the lower one, that isn't there. When you mount hard-drives in the lower cage, the cables want to stick straight out and right into the fan blades. I put two hard drives there in the "outer" positions and left a big loop of cables and tied them out of the way in the center empty space. If I had to put four HD's down there I dunno what I'd do. The cables have to make a very tight turn sideways (up) to clear the fan, but if there was a grille on that fan, it would not be a problem. ....Of course many people just remove the fan and let the PS fan pull air--but in my circumstances that won't work, because I bought a fanless PSU, because I assumed I could monitor and control it with a fan controller panel.
........
But also some people have asked elsewhere why the two upper fans have grilles at all, when removing fan grilles is so common at the higher-performance cooling end of the market. So perhaps it is time to move to removable fan grilles. The existing grilles are suitable, it's one of the better/more-open ones out there--they just need to be stamped from a separate piece of metal and held on with four screws.
~

Vulcan
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Re: P180-General Comments/Suggestions

Post by Vulcan » Sun Sep 04, 2005 11:51 am

Lubb wrote:Firstly--I don't like the fans theselves. They only have two-wire tails (no speed monitoring) and only have 4-pin (IDE-type) power plugs--so they don't directly attach to most fan controller units. At least, they should have regular 3-wire, 3-pin plugs, and then have 4-pin IDE adaptors that fit onto that. Of course you can't please everyone and Antec could probably put any brand in there and somebody wouldn't like it--but if someone is picky enough to spend $140 for an empty ATX case, they are probably pretty picky about their cooling options as well. The included fans aren't particularly noisy, the problem is that they don't have the plugs to hook up to common fan-controller hardware.
If the OEM cost of the tri-cool fans is very low perhaps they could be considered as throw-aways, but I don't really like the idea of paying for a part I know I'm immediately going to swap out anyway. The situation might be better off with no fans included and the price dropped accordingly. I don't think I have read of anyone "complaining" that they had to pick a power supply because one wasn't included; I doubt you'd get much argument over picking fans as well.
You are in the minority, Antec designed the case to suit the majority of people. What I mean by that is that the majrity of people do not have fan controllers and they just plug their fans into the power supply. Also, the majority of people would complain about having to buy their own fans, just look at the prices for fans at newegg. Thats what the average buyer would see. The fans antec includes really aren't adding too much to the price of the case anyway.
Lubb wrote: Secondly--I don't like the fan grilles. Specifically--the lower one, that isn't there. When you mount hard-drives in the lower cage, the cables want to stick straight out and right into the fan blades. I put two hard drives there in the "outer" positions and left a big loop of cables and tied them out of the way in the center empty space. If I had to put four HD's down there I dunno what I'd do. The cables have to make a very tight turn sideways (up) to clear the fan, but if there was a grille on that fan, it would not be a problem. ....Of course many people just remove the fan and let the PS fan pull air--but in my circumstances that won't work, because I bought a fanless PSU, because I assumed I could monitor and control it with a fan controller panel.
........
But also some people have asked elsewhere why the two upper fans have grilles at all, when removing fan grilles is so common at the higher-performance cooling end of the market. So perhaps it is time to move to removable fan grilles. The existing grilles are suitable, it's one of the better/more-open ones out there--they just need to be stamped from a separate piece of metal and held on with four screws.
~
Well, I think you could add your own grlle pretty easily couldn't you? I havent used the case myself and this is really the first time I've heard that complant.

As far as removeable grilles go, I think the average P18 user isn't going to care too much about having the grilles there. This would be an additional expense to antec, and really I don't see a point fr it. You can remove all the grilles a half hour if they are a concern to you.

Devonavar
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Post by Devonavar » Mon Sep 05, 2005 12:53 pm

I would imagine that the fans are purposely designed to run off the PSU because of the number of users who are likely to try running two full speed 120mm fans off the motherboard connectors and end up frying the motherboard's fan circuit. Most motherboards aren't rated to deliver all that much power to the fans. Running the case fans off the motherboard seems like a recepie for trouble if you ask me. I realize that you would use a fan controller, but Vulcan is right: Most users don't, and they have to cater to the needs of most users.

No case manufacturer will ever ship a case without grills because they wouldn't be able to pass EMI testing.

Freelancer77
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Post by Freelancer77 » Mon Sep 05, 2005 11:46 pm

No case manufacturer will ever ship a case without grills because they wouldn't be able to pass EMI testing.
Or UL Labs. Grilles are required until out of the door from the manufacturer.

On the fans, since they are TriCools they are self-controlled (I know, 3 position switches aren't as accomodating as a rheo-knob), with 5, 7, and 12v choices. You won't find a fan that has a selection switch and also has a 3-pin header. Antec isn't unique in that regard. And from the other perspective, exactly which retail case is available today with the choice of fan(s) most of us would prefer?

As for the lower cage, I've got 4 drives in there AND the Antec 38mm wide fan, and not one worry about clearance.

Image

Now, if you're using IDE drives in the lower cage, you might have to think twice, or get the new Roundcable2-FX, which has a short section of flat ribbon cable between the master and slave IDE plug in place of the large, ugly loop of round cable. I've only found them at performance-pcs.com, but they are slick.
Antec P-180, Athlon64 3700+ San Diego, AC Freezer64, Seasonic S12-500, OCZ EL Platinum Rev.2 PC3200 2x512
ASUS: A8N SLI Dx, EN6600GT/TOP, DRW1608-PB, E616-P3B
Western Digital: WD740GD x2 RAID0, WD360GD x2 RAID0, WD1600JB
Zalman: VF700-CU, NB47J, ZM-OP1 Fan

Lubb
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Location: IL-USA

Post by Lubb » Tue Sep 06, 2005 12:07 am

My problem with the lower drive area is the cables want to stick straight out of the plugs. I was using SATA drives with 4-pin power. It appears that your SATA cables are pre-bent, did you hit them with a heat gun or something? As stiff as they are, I didn't know how tight they could be bent without breaking. I got 4 HD's to hook up and 4 red and 2 long-orange cables, I guess I could risk a couple....
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...No case manufacturer will ever ship a case without grills because they wouldn't be able to pass EMI testing....
-I would have guessed that (in the US anyway) it would have to do with product liability of an external fan with no protective grille. Someone elsewhere noted that Lian-Li was shipping a case with no external grilles, but I suppose the difference might be if it comes with fans or not? Do Lian-Li cases include fans? They're nice cases but cost too much for my sensabilities. (-what that means is, maybe next time around, heh-)

As far as EMI goes, lots of cases now come with side windows; do those pass EMI tests somehow or are they just not rated? I've not had any interest in cases with side windows, but it seems like I have read people's stories of their mobile and cordless phones doing odd things when used near their PC case windows.
~

Freelancer77
Posts: 194
Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2005 3:10 pm

Post by Freelancer77 » Wed Sep 07, 2005 1:12 am

My problem with the lower drive area is the cables want to stick straight out of the plugs. I was using SATA drives with 4-pin power. It appears that your SATA cables are pre-bent, did you hit them with a heat gun or something?
I'll accept that as a compliment. No, those data cables were not pre-bent, they were bent by hand, gently but quite easily. They can be virtually folded without any risk of internal damage as long as you don't apply mechanical force.

I had just finished Ralf Hutter's P180 build article when I started putting mine together, so I had to try and make it look neat. :shock: In your case, I'd recommend getting Molex-SATA adapters for the power cables, they are pretty easy to find, and come with many motherboards nowadays, and would ease the clearance issue greatly.
Antec P-180, Athlon64 3700+ San Diego, AC Freezer64, Seasonic S12-500, OCZ EL Platinum Rev.2 PC3200 2x512
ASUS: A8N SLI Dx, EN6600GT/TOP, DRW1608-PB, E616-P3B
Western Digital: WD740GD x2 RAID0, WD360GD x2 RAID0, WD1600JB
Zalman: VF700-CU, NB47J, ZM-OP1 Fan

vine-au
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Post by vine-au » Wed Sep 07, 2005 10:49 pm

Ive had no problems at all with my P180. In fact it's the best case ive ever owned.
The problem of fans is a minor one. i ordered 2 SilenX 120mm fans with my case just in case i wanted to swap some around, but ended up keeping the Antec TriSpeed fans and adding one of the SilenX to the front intake (wired to 7v).
The lower drive cage is tricky to install with a full rack, but is do-able (this is not a beginners case). Ive got 2 IDE and 1 SATA drive installed there and they never get above 31 oC under load. routing the cables is tricky (even with round IDE) but i havnt bothered replacing them with SATA yet so...
My SilenX 520 PSU fits perfectly with with lower fan installed, but check compatability with your PSU before u buy this case
As far as fan grilles go, if you have such an issue with them, cut them off, dont bitch about them - they are there for a reason. I keep them and the filters on because in my opinion the excess dust inside your case is going to clog components and increase temps a lot more than the reduced airflow (also keeps the dog hair out ;)
The VGA duct is a null point - useless and needs to be removed to provide good airflow through the case.
The accoustic and vibration dampening achieved by this case is incredible. has to be (not heard) to be believed.

10/10 for this case.

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