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Written by Steven Iglesias-Hearst   
Thursday, 14 February 2013
Table of Contents: Page Index
Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White Case
Closer Look: Exterior
Detailed Exterior Features
Closer Look: Interior
Detailed Interior Features
Final Thoughts
Conclusion

Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White Case Conclusion

Important: In this section I am going to write a brief five point summary on the following categories; Performance, Appearance, Construction, Functionality and Value. These views are my own and help me to give the Fractal Design Define R4 PC case a rating out of 10. A high or low score does not necessarily mean that it is better or worse than a similar PC case that has been reviewed by another writer here at Benchmark Reviews, which may have got a higher or lower score. It is however a good indicator of whether the Define R4 PC case is good or not. I would strongly urge you to read the entire review, if you have not already, so that you can make an educated decision for yourself.

Performance of the Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White PC Case is great. Temperatures of my overclocked system stay well within limits and the noise level is very low indeed. As standard the Define R4 is set up for silent performance and it serves this purpose well, and should you require more performance it has more than enough expansion capability to cater for your needs.

Appearance of the Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White PC case is minimal, the solid color and lack of real exterior styling suits the 'purist' hardware enthusiasts. Swapping the side panels over can minimize this look even further by hiding the vented side panel on the other side of the case out of view. If you want the Define style but would also like to show off your hardware, a windowed side panel version is also available. The Define R4 is also available in Titanium Grey and Black Pearl color schemes, each with their own windowed variants.

The construction of the Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White PC case is solid, even the plastic front door and grill unit feels high grade. The paint job is smooth and glossy and looks great but is not very durable, you will have to handle the Define R4 with care while building your system so as not to scuff or scratch and ruin the nice finish. The side panels could do with an upgraded fitting system, I just hate having to use excessive force to remove and install them and I worry about damaging the paintwork.

Functionality is very good. The Fractal Design Define R4 PC case has noise reducing foam installed as standard on the side panels, the front door and also on the roof fan mounting locations. There are two removable intake filters fitted although the front intake filter requires a few extra steps prior to removal. Cable routing is excellent thanks to the spacious area behind the motherboard tray and the well placed cable pass through locations. There are seven standard PCI expansion slots, plus one vertically orientated to cater for expansion hardware that doesn't need direct connection to a PCI slot on the motherboard. The fan speed control is simple in execution but gets the job done and allows you to control the speed of up to three fans. Four USB ports (2x USB 3.0 / 2 x USB 2.0) at the front of the case are much appreciated and mean you are less likely to need a hub. The hard drive caddies are configurable to suit your needs, the top caddy will rotate 45 degrees and the bottom caddy can be moved towards the PSU by 35mm.

Value for money has never been more pertinent with PC hardware with the current state of affairs our economy is in, you really don't want to be making any silly purchases right now as money isn't flowing as freely for everyone. It is my opinion that the Fractal Design Define R4 PC Case (Model# FD-CA-DEF-R4-WH) is worth its current $109.99 (NewEgg / Amazon) asking price. There are a lot of nice cases available right now that offer equal value, so you will have to be a savvy shopper and try to secure the best deal you can.

Pros:Benchmark Reviews Seal of Approval

+ Very functional case
+ Minimal noise
+ Fan speed control
+ 2 x USB 3.0/2 x USB 2.0 on front I/O panel
+ Plenty of room for expansion and future upgrades
+ Very spacious interior
+ Very sleek and stylish design
+ Big hardware supported
+ Hard Drive caddies are configurable
+ Supports up to 8 HDD/SSD
+ Excellent Build quality
+ Cable management is very good
+ Support for custom watercooling hardware
+ Plenty of ventilation
+ Locations for a further five 120/140mm fans

Cons:

- Very Heavy ATX PC Case
- Paint job not very durable - easy to scratch/mark
- Needs better side panel fitting
- Minimal looks may not cater for all

Ratings:

  • Performance: 8.00
  • Appearance: 8.75
  • Construction: 9.00
  • Functionality: 9.50
  • Value: 8.00

Final Score: 8.65 out of 10.

Recommended: Benchmark Reviews Seal of Approval.

COMMENT QUESTION: What do you think of the Define R4 computer case?

NewEgg.com

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Comments 

 
# RE: Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White CaseSkidmarks 2013-02-14 23:54
It's difficult to see pictures of a white case against a white background.
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# RE: RE: Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White CaseOlin Coles 2013-02-15 07:11
I think that they're almost all clear and easy to see, except for one side view photo that displays a flat side panel. It is an alpine white case, after all.
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# ComplimentsBruce 2013-02-15 08:32
I was going to compliment the photographer (Steven) for the quality of the images. I know how hard it is to get good images from all the shiny BLACK cases we normally feature, but over the years I've developed lighting techniques to make it work. I imagine the all white case provided a whole new set of challenges.

One possible tip, try turning down the contrast a bit on your monitor....
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# RE: ComplimentsSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2013-02-15 10:15
You are absolutely right there Bruce. I tried a couple of test shots at first, as I had a feeling the color would be hard to portray. Clever lighting and a bit of manipulation with Photoshop won the day in the end.
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# RE: ComplimentsSkidmarks 2013-04-01 06:58
May as well not have bothered with the pictures.
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# RE: RE: ComplimentsOlin Coles 2013-04-01 07:01
You're going to keep complaining about the pictures? We just covered this with you over a month ago. Find something new to gripe about.
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# RE: Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White CaseArgos 2013-04-01 05:27
I love the 'black pearl' version of this case.
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# RE: Fractal Design Define R4 Arctic White CaseArgos 2013-04-01 07:53
I think the pictures are fine. I have no trouble at all.
Perhaps some might want to change some of the settings of their monitor, or perhaps buy a new one alltogether.
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# beautiful caseazrael36 2013-04-05 23:28
IMO this case is a study in refined elegance. I have just purchased one and will begin modding it as soon as it arrives. I am going to bring out the dirty wild woman locked away in this cloak of purity!
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# brain stuttercreator 2013-07-23 04:34
"the top caddy will rotate 45 degrees "
:P
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