Antec unveiled one of its newest cases, the Antec P280. While still a prototype, the case already promises large potential. As you may have intuitively noticed, the case is a successor to one of Antec’s many famous cases, the Antec P180. And for good reason too, while the Antec P180 was one of the best cases on the market in its time, it hasn’t aged well and doesn’t feature some of the more standard qualities of today’s cases. Such as dust filters, numerous methods of cable management, effective intake and exposure of the PSU, and noise eliminating features.
Be forewarned, these types of cases provide a sleek and elegant look; hindering any aesthetics or design that provide a gaming case perception. Its design is basically what you’d see in an office environment.
Due to the immense popularity of the aesthetics and design of the Antec P180 and Antec’s failure to release a successor in due time, other companies have created their own imitations. However, these imitations aren’t up to par and have flaws. Take for example the Fractal Design R3, its appearance is an almost identical to the P180. It features a comparable air flow to the Antec P180, noise eliminating foam, dust filters, and unique cable management that will fit many different combinations of motherboards and parts. However, the inherent problem with this case is that it’s built from aluminum and plastic. While having great features, it suffers from an overall flimsy feel and doesn’t seem very strong. Don’t get me wrong though, for its price, it’s an excellent case, but there are minor flaws that the Antec P280 will pick up on.
Another imitator is the NZXT H2, although where the P180 excelled at certain features, this case suffered in those respective areas. This case lacks one of the most important features, airflow. To put it quite simply, this case isn’t very good; the architecture of the case prevents stable airflow and requires further installation of additional fans inside the case to provide sufficient cooling. Longer video cards aren’t supported; the interior is cramped. Alone, it’s not a good case and not worth your money. Sure, the cable management may be a little better than the P180, but overall it’s just not worth it and really is a poor successor to the P180.
Unveiled at Computex 2011, the Antec P280 is expecting a $130 price point with no officially announced release date. Judging from the progress and design of the prototype, I speculate that it will be released sometime in the 4th quarter of this year. The Antec P280, provides features such as:
* Noise eliminating plastic lined on the side and front panels.
* Convenient access to fans, dust filters, and hard drives without the need for screwdrivers.
* A sound proof grill engraved into the case for the top exhaust fans.
* Clever dust filter placement for the PSU. Dust filter is easily removed from the side of the case instead of the inconvenient back.
* Plenty of room and holes for cable management.
* Room for longer video cards.
It’s a large improvement over the Antec P180 to catch up with today’s cases of moving away from requiring the use of screwdrivers to install or remove hard drives, fans, and other hardware. They successfully implemented the effortless feel and added additional features to keep up with the pace of more modern cases. Like its predecessor, I think we’re going to see another definitive case in the making. Still in its prototype, expect to see more features and adjustments made until its release date.