Fractal Design's Define Series Returns in its 7th Iteration

👤by Tim Harmer Comments 📅20.02.2020 16:25:21

Fractal Design are back, returning with a brand new update to their flagship case range that redefined what it meant to be a silent PC enclosure. The Define 7 series launches in both Standard and XL formats, building on a reputation of excellence in design while incorporating new features that suit the changing landscape of desktop PCs. Models start from 144.99 / $159.99 / 164.99, and are available today.

Adaptable Interior

The Define series has been comprehensively redesigned internally to make it more versatile and adaptable to the requirements of modern PC owners. A default Open layout is optimised to give users the most free volume for components, whereas the Storage layout incorporates a plethora of HDD mounting locations for use as a server or home NAS. Most notable for some will be support for up to 285mm EATX motherboard form factors, but the Define 7 also accommodates up to 14 mechanical HDDs, 4 SSDs and an optical bay within its deceptively capacious interior. Coupled to this is 420mm radiator support and nine fan positions for either air or water cooling, with new brackets that allow you to convert any fan position into an HDD, SSD or pump mounting location.

Two other features also add to the flexibility of the Define 7. The top panel can be removed, making installation of even bulky or awkwardly fitting components that much easier, and the front panel has been updated with an improved reversible hinge design with magnetic latch. They're minor features in the grand scheme of things, but can serve to greatly reduce the hassle of planning the assembly of and using your PC.

The Define 7 XL takes things a step further as a full tower case. Fractal claim it supports 'the largest E-ATX and enterprise boards', including SSI-CEB and SSI-EEB form factors, as well as multi-GPU configurations and over a dozen HDDs. 480mm radiators will fit in both top and front locations, while a 280mm radiator can be used in the base of the case. If you have an exotic system to assemble they want the 7 XL to accommodate it with room to spare.

Define 7 XL interior

Sound dampening continues to be a core aspect of the design. Both standard and XL models utilise silence-optimised construction with industrial sound-dampened top, side and front panels, an innovation that was a part of the Define series from the very beginning. Configurations that require improved air flow can take advantage of a top panel that can swap from fully covered to filtered ventilation.

For all the internal changes however, the Define 7 series maintains the same classic, uncomplicated look that was a hallmark of the original. At home in an office, home study or living room, it can be either the focus of attention or as unassuming as needed.

The Define 7 is available in White, Black and Dark Grey colours, or a contrasting White/Black mix. Models with Tempered Glass side panel (clear, light or dark tint) pre-installed can be picked up for a slight premium, and those with a more refined taste will be relieved to hear that RGB illumination doesn't make it to the list of finished specifications. The Define 7 XL is only available in Black, but does also optionally come with light or dark tint Tempered Glass side panels. Prices start from 144.99 for the Define 7 and 189.99 for the Define 7 XL, plus a wide variety of accessories such as replacement side panels and HDD mounting hardware are also on sale direct from Fractal.

Key Features: Define 7

- Spacious and adaptable dual-layout interior accommodates large motherboards up to and including 285 mm E-ATX
- Support for radiators up to 360 mm in front, 420 mm up top, or 280 mm in the base in the default Open Layout
- Convert to Storage Layout for up to 14 HDDs along with 4 dedicated SSD mounts and one ODD bay (6 HDD/SSD + 2 SSD brackets + 1 multi-bracket included)
- The single 5.25 ODD bay can be converted to an additional 140 mm front fan mount with filtered louver covering
- Silence-optimized construction with industrial sound-damped front, top, and side panels
- Top panel swaps from sound-damped solid steel to filtered ventilation
- Chassis opens up to fully expose the case interior for unhindered installation and cable routing
- Broad cooling capacity with a total of 9 x 120/140 mm fan mounts and three preinstalled Dynamic X2 GP-14 fans
- Multi-brackets convert any unused fan position to an HDD, SSD or pump mount
- Tool-less, top-latching panels allow quick access while preventing accidental drops

Key Features: Define 7 XL

- Spacious, adaptable dual-layout interior accommodates large motherboards up to E-ATX and SSI-EEB
- Mount up to 18 HDD/SSDs plus five SSDs in the Storage Layout (6 HDD/SSD trays + 2 SSD brackets + 2 multi-brackets included)
- Use the Open Layout for more headroom and water-cooling options with radiators up to 480 mm in front or top and 280 mm in the base
- Two 5.25 ODD bays can be converted to an additional front fan mount with filtered louver (angled slats) covering
- Silence-optimized construction with industrial sound-damped front, top, and side panels
- Broad cooling capacity with a total of 9 x 140 mm or 11 x 120 mm fan mounts and three preinstalled Dynamic X2 GP-14 fans
- Five front USB ports including one USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C with fast charging support and speeds up to 10Gbps
- Ultra-slim Nexus+ 2 fan hub connects up to three PWM fans and six 3-pin fans directly in line with cable channels along the edge of the case
- 13 pass-through holes with ten rubber grommets and two removable covers make for clean cable routing regardless of motherboard size
- Detachable PSU cable shield and integrated cable guides with Velcro straps further simplify cable management behind the board

Related Stories