BitFenix Ghost Case Review: Begging for the Premium Treatmentby Dustin Sklavos on November 10, 2012 12:01 AM EST
- Posted in
Introducing the BitFenix Ghost
In the short time that they've been around, BitFenix has consistently proven an interest and willingness to design cases that are at the feature curve while being price competitive and offering a distinctive aesthetic and features. It sounds like a PR line, but it's true: the Merc series are among the best budget cases on the market, the Shinobi is a solid case in its own right, and the Prodigy was actually selling out for months after its release. In many ways they remind me of Corsair and Fractal Design; in the enclosure business for a short time, but continually making strides and ensuring each release is worth some attention.
That's true again today with the launch of BitFenix's first case tuned for silence, the Ghost. It eschews some of the design language that's become de rigeur for BitFenix (specifically the soft-touch plastic surface), but has some smart new design choices and more importantly, it hits a price point silent cases very rarely hit (outside of NZXT's H2): $99. So does the Ghost live up to its potential, or does it just leave us begging for more?
While I'm always on the lookout for a case to replace my venerable SilverStone FT02, very few promising candidates have ever come through that struck my tastes specifically. Yet the Ghost threatened to do exactly that, with its sleek, boxy design, ample watercooling support, and acoustic dampening materials. I'd been looking forward to reviewing the Ghost since I first saw it online. As you'll see the further we get into the review, this is a case I really wanted to succeed, not just for consumers everywhere but for myself as well.
|BitFenix Ghost Specifications|
|Motherboard Form Factor||ATX, Micro-ATX, Mini-ITX|
|Drive Bays||External||3x 5.25", 1x 3.5"|
|Internal||4x 3.5"/2.5", 3x 2.5"|
|Cooling||Front||1x 120mm intake fan, 1x 120mm fan mount|
|Rear||1x 120mm exhaust fan|
|Top||1x 230mm/200mm fan mount or 2x 120mm/140mm fan mounts|
|Bottom||1x 120mm/140mm fan mount|
|I/O Port||2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic, hotswap SATA bay|
|Power Supply Size||ATX|
|GPU||12.5" / 318mm|
8.3" x 20.6" x 20.1"
210mm x 522mm x 510mm
Removable fan filters
Hotswap SATA bay
Noise dampening padding
Support for 240mm/280mm radiator in top of case
The Ghost also features a door that's hinged on both sides similar to the design Corsair employed on their fancier (and pricier) Obsidian 550D. While it's not the smallest case, it does feel a bit smaller than the norm while also making exceptionally smart use of its dimensions. The hotswap bay in the top of the enclosure fits perfectly with allowing for increased height for installing a radiator in the top fan mounts. Many cases that advertise being able to support a 240mm radiator will actually run into trouble if you try to install one due to limited clearance. It's all well and good to be able to get a radiator in, but you do need to actually install fans on it, too.
With all that said, I think Fractal Design hit the mark and BitFenix missed it by supporting a 140mm exhaust fan as well as dual 140mm intakes in the Define R4. 120mm may be the standard, but 140mm fans are becoming increasingly common and they're often more efficient for the noise than the smaller fans are. I personally would've loved to have seen a 140mm exhaust fan or at least support for one on the Ghost, even if it meant slightly widening the case.
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Dustin Sklavos - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - linkNanoxia actually contacted me; I initially declined because their cases aren't available stateside.
However, BitFenix wasn't exactly easy to come by when I started reviewing their stuff either. Between your request and the potential for press to help them get a foothold out here, I went ahead and contacted them again to see if they're willing to shoot me one of the Deep Silence enclosures.
Grok42 - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - linkThis is REALLY great! I had never heard of this case and while it isn't a case I'm personally interested in purchasing because of its size, it looks like a very interesting case that I can't wait to read about. This case looks like it has the potential to be the best in class case for it's category.
roberta - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - link@Dustin
I am looking forward to the review of the Nanoxia Deep Silence 1
Thank You Very Much for All the Superb reviews,
LarryDan - Sunday, November 11, 2012 - linkAccording to the review in LegitReviews.com:
"Nanoxia will begin selling cases on Newegg at the end of November or early December, so they will be available in North America very soon! Right now they are shipping the cases and they have to clear customs, so that is what is issue at hand!"
I'm really glad you're going to review the Nanoxia DS1. So far, it's received quite a few excellent reviews and competes favorably with the FD Define R4 and Antec P280; however, I'm waiting for your analysis for the final word. Based on the other reviews, it appears to be the class winner and it may be the one you've been looking for.
jabber - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - link...most people over the age of 18 could handle having in their home.
JohnMD1022 - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - linkPut a door on the front and you lose me.
Grok42 - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - linkMy current workstation has a door. I obviously used to really like cases with a door design. They allowed me to close the door and achieve a clean look, reduce noise and still have external drives. Now that there is no reason to have external bays doors are noting but negative for me. The reason this case has a door is that it has 4 external bays. Either they put a door on it or they are not going to achieve a low noise case.
JohnMD1022 - Sunday, November 11, 2012 - linkI do a lot of work for seniors.
Since we can't hear as well as younger people perhaps noise is less of a factor.
I advise older people to place their computer on a table next to their work area to make access easier. We don't like getting down on our hands and knees and groping around behind things to disconnect cables.
And here is the problem with doors.
They get in the way and they are a hazard. Walk by an open door enough times, and sooner or later you get a broken door or a computer knocked on the floor.
Olaf van der Spek - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - link> The addition of the BitFenix fans
Didn't you add BQ fans?
Dustin Sklavos - Saturday, November 10, 2012 - linkAgh, yes.