First of all, we have to talk about the lengths Fractal Design have gone to offer acousting dampening without turning your case into an oven if you are using hotter components:
Both doors and the ‘ceiling’ of the Define R3 are covered in an extremely dense (and heavy! this case is 30 lbs before installation!) acoustic dampening material. It is quite thin, which keeps the space usage to a minimum. As you can see on one of the doors, there is a removable patch called “ModuVent” which allows you to install an extra fan on the door (and two in the ceiling) if you need to sacrifice some sound dampening for extra ventilation. Having the ability to choose is a nice feature, although I’m not sure it needed a fancy name…
As previously mentioned, this is a bottom-PSU-mount case, and this is where the power supply goes. The power supply is seated on four rubber pegs, with a rubber lining around the mounting bracket on the back of the case. Below the PSU mounting area is a removable filter – as you can guess, putting an air intake at the bottom of the case will make for a very dusty situation. It is recommended that you clean this filter regularly to keep your power supply clean and cool.
As you can see, lengths were taken to make the Define R3 as quiet as possible. There is room for one bottom-mounted fan intake, which can accommodate a 120mm or 140mm fan.
In addition to the two 5.25″ optical bays, there is room for eight hard drives. These drive trays can accommodate 2.5″ SSDs, but only one set of screws is included for those. You will need to source your own screws if you have more than one SSD. For those using mechanical drives, you will be happy to know that great lengths were taken to reduce vibration – anywhere metal meets metal is cushioned by rubber grommets.
Looking from this angle, you will see that there is a HUGE window on the motherboard mounting tray to accommodate CPU cooler installations that require access to the back of the motherboard. This is an absolute necessity for any case claiming to be for enthusiasts, so it’s great to see here.
Taking one last look at the inside of the case, you can see that it is just plain pretty. The two tone look is gorgeous in my opinion, and although you will rarely get to enjoy it, it is just one of those small details that I appreciate in a case.
Now let’s install a system in the Define R3, and see how it performs!