Fractal Design is a company that has been in the PC market for over 15 years. They offer some of the most diverse cases available on the market and have pioneered many new features and layouts with each generation to improve performance, aesthetics, and usability.
Fractal Design’s Define series has been one of the most competent, high-quality lines of cases I’ve seen for a few years. Fractal Design always seems to bring more to the table with each edition, and they are built with care and boast unequaled functionality in many situations. Today, we’ll look at the Fractal Design Define 7, which continues the tradition and is set to replace the highly-rated R6. Our version is called “Light Glass that has been tempered,” It comes in clear and dark hues, as well as a traditional variant with no glass at all.
This PC case was introduced in early 2020, giving a new style to a popular series. The Define 7 XL, which replaces the XL R2, was also introduced by Fractal, but we’ll be focusing on the mid-tower choice for the time being. Let’s explore what the Define 7 offers after the success of the R5 and R6 models.
- This is a high-end, high-quality casing.
- With E-ATX support, it’s roomy.
- A fantastic acoustic performance.
- Panels that do not need any tools
- Dust filters of excellent quality
- 5.25′′ bay is retained
- A new ultra-slim fan hub has been developed.
- Interior with two layouts
- Cable management that works
- The cable cover seems to be a bit of a waste of time.
- Paying for a top panel you won’t utilize is a waste of money.
|Measurements (mm)||547 x 240 x 475 pixels (L x W x H)|
|Materials||Steel, Glass that have been tempered, and plastic are all materials that may be used to make a product.|
|Colors that are available||Grey, black, and white|
|I/O panel in the front||USB 3.0 x 2, USB 2.0 x 2, Type-C (Universal Serial Bus), Audio jack x 1, Microphone Jack x 1; Power Button, Reset Button, RGB Button; USB 3.0 x 2, USB 2.0 x 2, Type-C (Universal Serial Bus);|
|Slots for Expansion||7+2|
|Bays for driving||6 x 3.5″/2.5″ + 2 dedicated 2.5″ spots are included in the 14 x 3.5″/2.5″ + 4 x 2.5″ positions.|
|Support for motherboards||Mini-ITX, MicroATX, ATX, and E-ATX are all types of motherboards.|
|Cooling (front, top, and back)||2 × Dynamic X2 GP-14 (2 x 120/140 mm included) / 3 x 120/140 mm / 1 x 120/140 mm (1 x Dynamic X2 GP-14 included)|
|GPU’s maximum length||315 mm storage arrangement – 491 mm open layout (467 mm with front fan)|
- The glass that has been tempered
- Operation Quiet
- Fan Hub Nexus+2
- Type-C (Universal Serial Bus)
Inside the Container:
- Define 7 PC Case by Fractal Design
- Accessory Container
First impressions of the case are very similar to the R6; this is simplistic in its aesthetics, even with the Glass that has been tempered panel. Again, this is built for stealth, but the uninterrupted glass panel is high quality and will add some style points to any build.
We notice a hinged door at the front once again, replete with that brushed metal aesthetic. However, with a new and better hinge mechanism and a snappy magnet to help, the door seems significantly thicker this time around. Aside from appearing considerably more solid, the door only opens 90 degrees and may be reversed, much like the R6.
The door directly impacts cooling, despite the side ventilation towards the front. If your primary concern is cooling, you will want to keep the door open, take it off, or go for a different case. This is built for silence, so the gate receives the sound dampening treatment, providing A fantastic acoustic performance.
The full-length fan filter may be removed for simple cleaning when the door is opened. The vent is divided, with a separate filter for the 5.25″ drive bay. These filters aren’t the simplest to remove and demand significant power, but don’t worry; perceive, and the filter will come off intact.
Two Dynamic X2 GP-14 140mm fans are preinstalled below the filter. This is something we see a lot with Fractal Design cases, but this time there’s enough for a third 140mm fan if that’s what you want. There’s still enough for three 120mm fans in the front, and a radiator up to 360mm may be installed. Installing an optical drive eliminates the option of three 140mm fans, leaving just two available.
The lowest dust filter is pulled out at the very bottom. Fractal’s full-length dust filter that emerges from the front is nothing new, and it does so without the need to open the door beforehand. This is an often-overlooked feature, but the fact that it can be removed from the front is unusual for some reason!
The whole ModuVent and fundamental usage of this case have been dramatically improved. The new method to release your side panels is on the rear, with two clips at the top of each side that you move to take the panels off. The meetings are securely fastened. Therefore there is no problem with this new method, which is much preferable to the thumbscrews.
At the rear of the PC case, we see the third and final Dynamic 140mm fan pre-installed, completing the airflow setup, which I think is pretty good out of the box, albeit not as good as a mesh front panel case. There are seven horizontal Slots for Expansion at the back, alongside two vertical slots for vertical GPU mounting if that’s your thing. The PSU attaches to a bracket which is always great for cases with a PSU shroud, but other than the panel mechanism, everything’s the same as the R6.
The top has some of the most significant modifications since the Fractal Design R6, including Fractal’s unique replaceable panel design. The ModuVent was always a fantastic concept and simple to use, but it’s evident from the Define 7 that the Fractal engineers have done their homework. With a little push to the front-most corners, the top now pops off. The top panel may be swapped out for the ventilation top panel and is pretty easy to remove/replace. Apart from acoustic performance, the top panel comprises the sound dampening materials found on all other boards (excluding the TG) and is featureless.
The I/O panel in the front is the same as the R6, with two USB Type-A 2.0 and 3.0. Again, we see a single Type-C (Universal Serial Bus) port and separate headphone and mic jacks. The top vent is now completely uninterrupted and looks like part of the front I/O, which was always a visual issue with previous Fractal cases.
For those wishing to add more cooling assistance to this PC box, the ventilation top panel can be swapped out, and Fractal Design has you covered with a full-length dust filter. In addition, a cutout fill port for growing water-coolers is included in the bracket for installing your radiators or fans. This saves you the trouble of filling the res from awkward angles within the case, and it’s another excellent addition from Fractal Design.
From the Inside
While I like the Phanteks Enthoo 719’s hinged door, Fractal Designs’ invention of side panels is still outstanding. As previously noted, this pops off owing to the back clip, which contains those little clips that pop in and out with a bit of power. Because there are some additional clips around the bottom, the panel will only fall to the ground if you drop it.
The internal layout is open by default; however, it may be changed to allow a more storage-oriented configuration. Fractal Design has come up with yet another fantastic piece of modularity. I didn’t need any HDD/SSD brackets for my construction, so I went with open. This is an ample, open space with a really logical structure. The box can accommodate motherboards up to 285mm in length; however, E-ATX may not be the best fit for the Define 7. I chose an ATX board since it fits well and leaves enough area for cable management with the grommets.
You can place a radiator up to 420mm long inside the case if you use the top bracket. If you use the top, you’ll need the vented top panel and sacrifice some acoustic performance, but it’s good to have choices.
Rubber grommets aren’t unique to Fractal or cases in this price range, but it’s a feature I like. The Fractal Design grommets are less likely to move than those from other manufacturers, and they didn’t come out once throughout the installation of my PSU cables.
The full-length plastic PSU cover entirely encases the bottom. Because the basement can hold a radiator up to 280mm, the PSU shroud has some ventilation. Tiny plastic bits on the front end of the PSU shroud will spring out as required. They may be removed if you want to place a passive radiator on the front panel or if you want to add a reservoir.
By switching to a storage-oriented structure, you’ll be able to fit many more disks into this case. Along with the accompanying “multi” bracket, you receive six SSD/HDD brackets and two SSD-only brackets. Up to 14 HDDs and four specialized SSD mounts are available in total.
This handy multibracket may convert any vacant fan location into an HDD, SSD, or pump mount. This feature is unlikely to be utilized by the general public, but it’s nice to see Fractal Design adding new features without removing anything important.
The Panel on the Back
The Panel on the Back of the Define 7 brings about some exciting changes. You’ll first notice the repositioning of the Nexus+ 2 fan hub. We now get a slim horizontal fan hub rather than the square one we are all used to. This is a significant change, and the fan hub no longer gets in the way as it did when cable manages the older R6.
Another feature is the “Integrated cable guides,” which I typically wouldn’t bother with but tried anyhow. They were easy to use, much as the NZXT H510, with the center readily fitting the giant 24-pin cable and the velcro straps completing the job.
The cables are nothing out of the ordinary, all as high quality as you would expect, with the front I/O braided. There is a secondary “shroud” at the back to aid with cable management but isn’t it all a bit pointless unless you plan on having The Panel on the Backoff? Well, maybe, but it’s easy to remove and doesn’t get in the way as they did with the Cooler Master H500M.
In this situation, cable management was exceedingly simple and user-friendly, with 30mm of space being more than adequate. Whether or whether you utilize cable guides, the pliable cables make cable management a breeze.
It’s challenging to find Fractal Design examples with a sufficient number of characteristics. As a result, the Define 7 is a follow-up to the R6, with the primary emphasis being on acoustic performance while still including a slew of useful accessories.
Sound Performance – Acoustically, this performs similarly to the older R6, with both cases being optimized for Operation Quiet. The high-density padding on the panels works well at keeping those decibels low.
Modularity – The new and improved ModuVent system (interchangeable top panels) is a great addition. While many users will pay for a discussion that they may never use, it’s great for those looking to add extra cooling support. In addition, you can take advantage of Fractal Design’s “dual-layout” feature and change the “open” layout to a more storage-friendly one. The case, in general, seems to make your life easier at every turn, with easy-to-pop-out cable management clips, slots for water-cooling, and side panels.
Fan Hub Nexus+2 – The new preinstalled fan hub is now ultra-slim while still able to connect three PWM fans and six 3-pin fans. Fan hubs make systems with multiple fans much more accessible to cable management, and this lean approach no longer gets in the way at the back.
Fractal Design cases are one of the finest solutions for a stress-free construction because of these added features. With what is a faultless PC casing, the Define 7 has been built with care and brings the typical superb build quality to the table.
The Define 7 is the series’ most recent accomplishment, and it’s more than capable of succeeding the highly respected Fractal Design R6. Although this case is comparable to its predecessor, each enhancement may be considered a quality-of-life increase, making it one of the most exemplary premium cases available.
While this is reasonably Expensive, it ships with many premium features. Additionally, this is a versatile case, with the modular nature of the dual layout and interchangeable top panels making this great for almost any build. This performs similarly acoustically to the R6 and is an excellent choice for a quieter PC build but beware of airflow as this is limited due to the thick hinged door. Either way, forgetting for a minute that this is one of the most well-constructed cases I have used, it’s a PC case that will please any enthusiast looking to achieve Operation Quiet in style.
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