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Written by Austin Downing   
Saturday, 24 March 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Closer Look: Exterior
Closer Look: Interior
Detailed Interior Features
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Antec P280 Final Thoughts

Much like two of my favorite cars the BMW M3, and the Nissan GT-R, I found the Antec P280 with its subtle looks, mute colors, and gunmetal grey front to be very beautiful. However, underneath its rather conventional exterior lies a great amount of power. In the case of the cars, it can propel the driver to great speeds or in the case of the Antec P280 hold a processing powerhouse that can be used for any number of purposes. Even better, like the BMW the Antec P280 is a comfortable daily driver that when not being run at 100%, maintains its silence and composure until the moment that the power is needed. The only thing that I would like to see in the P280 is that Antec would include two more 120mm fans in front rather than forcing the user to buy two more fans if they would like to get the best cooling potential out of the P280.

Antec_P280_Finished.jpg

Antec P280 Conclusion

The Antec P280's performance is exactly as it claims to be, providing users with adequate cooling at an extremely low noise level. I found that with the fans on low the Antec P280 was near silent and even on high, the Antec P280 stayed quiet. Thankfully, the tone given off by the included TwoCool fans allowed them to easily blend into the background. Users in need of extreme cooling performance may need to look elsewhere but for those need lots of space and a quiet computing environment they need not look further.

Although appearance is very subjective, I found the Antec P280 with its subtle looks, mute colors, and gunmetal grey front to be very beautiful. The combinations of colors means that the Antec P280 could easily be used in as a workstation in an office or as a gaming rig at home without look out of place in either.

The Antec P280 is extremely well built with its steel exterior, dual layer sides, and triple layers door make for a very solid feeling case. Unfortunately, although I feel the Antec P280 could stand up to much abuse and last for a very long time Antec has only included a three-year warranty on the P280.

The Antec P280 is about as functional as they come. For a moderate price enthusiasts are given a case that can hold almost any imaginable combination hardware including a 3-way SLI/CFX setup and a large tower cooler. At the same time if users would like to utilize a large number of hard drives, and a low power system the Antec P280 could provide a very quiet home server.

At $139.99 the Antec P280 provides a fantastic deal to an enthusiast. Combine this with a quiet performance, a beautiful design, Antec's legendary build quality, and all of the different options that the Antec P280 provides enthusiast and it appears that Antec may have created a real home run with the P280.

Although the Antec P280 is near perfect especially for our readers who would like their computers to be silent it would be nice to see two more 120mm fans added to the front as it could help drop temperatures a little and give our readers a little more headroom for overclocking. None-the-less the Antec P280 provides a great level of customizability, quiet performance, and a beautiful design without breaking the bank. Because of that, I am glad to award the Antec P280 with Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.

Pros:Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award

+ Sleek design
+ Triple layer front helps prevent internal system noise from escaping
+ Solid construction will allow for years of faithful service
+ Large amounts of space for almost any combination of hardware
+ Nine expansion slots allow for users to effectively use a 3-way SLI or CFX setup

Cons:

- 1-year warrenty
- Very heavy
- Door could get in the way if the 5.25" drive bays a frequently used.

Ratings:

  • Performance: 9.00
  • Appearance: 9.00
  • Construction: 9.50
  • Functionality: 9.00
  • Value: 9.50

Final Score: 9.2 out of 10.

Benchmark Reviews invites you to leave constructive feedback below, or ask questions in our Discussion Forum.


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Comments 

 
# I Like HeavyChris 2012-04-03 08:27
There is a reason why Antec cases seem to always weigh more than their completion's. It's because they are built to a higher quality. I owned a lot of cases from all kinds of other manufactures and Antec always seemed to have a build better design and with better materials. I've own a mini p180 and a P182SE and a 800D from Corsair. I was NOT impressed with the 800D at all. Antec builds some of the highest quality cases. To be so bold, I would even say that they are better than LianLi's cases.
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# RE: I Like HeavyAustin Downing 2012-04-03 09:25
What it actually comes down to is building materials. I wish more companies would use aircraft grade aluminum. It is strong enough but much, much lighter than the steel designs of other companies. Just look at the Lian Li PC-90 case. It only weighed 14.7Lbs. Weight is a very superficial way of looking at build quality.
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# RE: RE: I Like HeavyChris 2012-04-03 09:41
That is very true, but I current have a LIAN LI PC-A05B and it is one REALLY flimsy case. Sure it does not weight a lot, but it seems quite fragile.
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# antec=good casesresere 2012-04-05 16:47
i do own, compare and recomend 'em. most of P1 series. i'm not a fanboy. others do also good cases.

good review.
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# DimensionsDrop 2012-05-28 16:57
According to the manual, the case dimensions should only be 20.7" x 9.1" x 22.1".
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# RE: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseWill 2012-07-20 14:29
The only great thing about this case is the 3.5, easy acces hard drive cage.

The Antec P193 is quieter and cools much better than the P280. If Antec had put 140mm fans in the top and the 200mm fan on the side, this would have been a great case. And if they had also put two 140mm fans in the front, it would have been the best case in the world.
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# RE: RE: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseArron 2012-09-06 11:21
Will: Moving the air in straight lines is thermally efficient and inherently quieter than any other type of airflow. As soon as you add any extra fans to the (front of the) top and especially on the sides, you get turbulence, vortexes and pressure ridges. The cooling performance then plummets. Even side vents or the late, non lamented (at least by me), CPU funnels take away a degree Celsius or two by fouling up the airstream. That is why any decent CPU cooler blows air across the CPU, not directly ?upwards? away from it ? the two benefits are better CPU cooling and (potentially, if not stuffed up by someone) better airstream management within the case. It is also a major factor in a number of (expensive, name brand) so-called high performance steel cases adding these things (side fans, extra fans in the wrong places) to remain fashionable and then they can only get adequate cooling by sounding like a jet engine because the airstream is inherently so poorly managed. I guess they keep your legs warm on that side and keep power station owners happy.
I really wish that BMR readers would stop suggesting this - it is the least effective method I know of for cooling a case.
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# RE: RE: RE: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseChris 2012-09-06 19:56
so a single fan pulling all the air in straight lines through the case would decrease temperatures? That's what I got from your post. And my video cards disagree. They say that the side panel fan keeps them cooler.
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# RE: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseArron 2012-09-08 10:52
Chris: I tried to keep it brief in the first post. This is still a short & semi munted version, however it is a truly complex subject. Caveat: The following only applies to tower cases.

Single fan: I did not say a single front fan, although over the years I have installed hundreds of high powered CAD & CAM or video workstations with only one front and one rear fan, and I am currently experimenting with another video editing / rendering system in a Lian Li PC6 case ? one front and one rear fan. Tricky site, they have no computer real estate at their site ? all taken up with monitors, cameras, capture gear etc. etc., while they want it quiet enough to record sound in the room! Often two lower fronts & two rear tops are needed if the machine is being hammered. My extreme machines have three in each position (plus 2 CPU fans plus a PSU fan).

Video cards: A lot also depends on the design & orientation of the components - a lot of video cards have fans which push their own hot air either downwards, which is crazy (heat rises) or through the back of the case. Some video cards actually have frontal shrouds which block the case fans from doing their job. I use oversize heatsink video cards without fans for two reasons ? they are quiet, and they are designed to allow case fans to do their job. Current system(s), 2 * gigabyte GV-R677SL-1GD silent cell graphic cards (dual slot full length & height cards - the fastest cards I could get at the time without fans) which are driving 5 * 1080P monitors ? I am not a shoot'em up gamer, this is for video editing and rendering, ERPS reporting, research and writing. During initial (brutal) system testing, they stayed well below 50C (Celsius) in controlled 30C ambient. During my actual use their rear heatsinks are always warm when running hard, however they haven't ever reached close to that temp again (25C ambient helps). Another under-appreciated issue is the necessity for vented backplanes above and below the video cards, and preferably vents in the rear of the case to the left of the video cards as well.
In short ? futz the orientation of your components or vents up, and your system may well need an ever increasing number of fans running in all directions at ever increasing speeds to keep it cooler (and always relatively noisier).
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# RE: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseArron 2012-09-08 10:59
Quick explanation, being in Australia and using an Australian English character set, my dashes are turning into question marks on this site. Arron
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