|Antec Mini P180 mATX Computer Case|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Bruce Normann - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Sunday, 28 September 2008|
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Antec Mini P180
Antec is a major player in the computer chassis market, with a long history of providing solid solutions to computer builders looking for something a cut above the norm. They are the number one most popular case manufacturer for readers of Benchmark Reviews, so they must be doing something right. Today Benchmark Reviews is going to look at a new offering from Antec that is aimed at a narrower market niche than most of their other products. The Antec Mini P180 is a mini tower case that builds on the designs of the original P180 and P182, and puts those lessons to work in a smaller format. The smaller format comes at a price; only microATX motherboards are supported, but as we'll see, that's not too much of a penalty in the intended market segment.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I have to admit that I have an Antec Sonata II that I bought several years ago and it has survived various upgrades and overhauls of the components inside. It's been a faithful partner, and I've not had any reason to consider an upgrade. I still like the way it looks, with its high gloss black paint job and clean design for the front panel. Every now and then I forget, and crash the DVD disk caddy into the front door, but I've done dumber things that have had far worse consequences. Like the time I gave my IBM Model M keyboard to the Salvation Army...
The main thing that sets this case apart from every other desktop case we have reviewed on Benchmark Reviews is the fact that it will only accept microATX motherboards. For most PC enthusiasts, this would be the death knell, except for one thing. All of us end up building PCs for other people; people who don't share our love of gaming, over clocking, massive heat sinks, LEDs, side windows, cold cathode lamps and cable jackets that glow in the dark. These people just want a box that rocks, reliably, without the headaches of learning everything from scratch, and so they turn to you. They want performance, upgradability, and reliability, at a reasonable price. This is known as the bang for the buck, or value market segment, and in this instance a uATX motherboard makes a lot of sense. There's another market segment where uATX rules and that's HTPC, but that's not the subject of today's review.
About the company: Antec Inc.
Antec, Inc. is the leading global brand of high-performance computer components and accessories for the gaming, PC upgrade and Do-It-Yourself (DIY) markets. Founded in 1986, Antec is recognized as a pioneer in these industries and has maintained its position as a worldwide market leader and international provider of efficient, quiet, and reliable products. Antec has also achieved great success in the distribution channel, meeting the demands of quality-conscious system builders, VARs and integrators.
Antec's offering of enclosures includes a large range of cases, such as its technically advanced Performance One Series, cost-effective New Solution Series and server grade cases designed for the needs of all workstation and server markets. Antec's products also include front line power supplies such as its TruePower Trio series, Quattro series, and EarthWatts, the most environmentally friendly power supplies available. PC gamers are an increasingly significant consumer of performance components, and many Antec products are geared toward the gaming demographic, like the Nine Hundred, the premier gamer enclosure. Antec also offers a computing accessories line comprised of many original products, including its patented LED Fans and Notebook Cooling solutions.
Antec is headquartered in Fremont, California, with additional offices in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The company's products are sold in more than 30 countries throughout the world.