Antec Twelve Hundred Case Review
By Gabriel Torres on August 11, 2008
Antec Twelve Hundred is a full-tower case targeted to gamers, with an impressive number of cooling options (six fans with speed control for all of them and also a switch to turn the top fan LED on or off), twelve 5.25” bays with nine of them available for hard disk drives and several other minor features, like washable dust filters. Let’s take an in-depth look at this latest release by Antec.
Looking at the case for the first time we were impressed by its impeccable paint job.
In Figure 3, you can see the front panel from this case and, as you can see, this case doesn’t have a front door. This case has twelve external 5.25” bays and nine of them are used by three hard disk drive cages. As you can see, all covers are meshed for a better airflow and each cage has a washable dust filter. Each cage is also cooled by a 120 mm fan and on the front part of each cage you can find a potentiometer to control the fan speed. Of course we will talk more about the disk drive bays and possible configurations later.
Antec Twelve Hundred has a big 190 mm fan on its top (Antec claims that this case uses a top 200-mm fan, but if you measure it is actually a 190 mm fan), protected by a fancy mesh, as shown in Figure 5. This and all other fans available on this case glow blue when they are turned on, but you can switch off the top fan LED’s through a switch available on the rear panel. Unfortunately you can switch off the LED’s only from the top fan.
On the top part of the case you can also find a panel containing two USB ports, an eSATA port and mic in and headphone jacks, plus the power and reset switches. The two USB ports have a relatively good distance between them, allowing you to install two “fat” USB devices at the same time, like USB drives. We think that this case could have a FireWire port here and two more USB ports on a high-end case wouldn’t be bad.
Finally we have the rear panel in Figure 7. On this case the power supply is installed on the lower section of the case. This case has two 120 mm fans on its rear panel and you can control the speed of the top and rear fans through a small panel available on the top section of the rear panel (see Figure 8). Three speeds are available: low (400 rpm for the top fan and 1,200 rpm for the rear fans), medium (700 rpm for the top fan and 1,600 rpm for the rear fans) and high (1,000 rpm for the top fan and 2,000 rpm for the rear fans). As mentioned, you can also turn off the LED’s from the top fan through this panel. This case also has two holes for hoses from water cooling devices. These holes use a rubber cover, so you won’t need to break anything on your case to have them available. The side panels are attached to the case through thumbscrews, which is great.
Now let’s see how Twelve Hundred looks like inside.
In Figure 9 you have an overall look from the interior of this case. What immediately caught our attention was the fact that all interior parts also got an excellent black paint job, giving a terrific looks to the interior of the case, making it to look like an aluminum case, while it is a steel model.
On the left side panel there is a place for you to install an additional 120 mm fan that doesn’t come with the case. The case comes with a washable air filter for this spot, which is really nice.
Even though you can remove the right side panel, the motherboard tray is permanently attached to the chassis.
This case comes with regular screws for fastening daughterboards to the case. We think a case from this quality should have come with thumbscrews instead. In Figure 11, you can see the two rear 120 mm fans and the expansion slots.
All fans use a standard 4-pin peripheral power connector and thus you can’t monitor their speed.
As mentioned, this case has twelve external 5.25” bays. On the default configuration the case uses three hard disk drive cages, each one taking three 5.25” bays, so in fact we have three 5.25” bays and nine 3.5” bays for hard disk drives available. This case comes with a 5.25”-to-3.5” adapter, so if you won’t use a floppy disk drive you can have up to 10 hard disk drives installed, which is more than enough even for the most hardcore user.
If you need more 5.25” bays you can remove the hard disk drive cages. In fact you can remove all of them to make the twelve 5.25” bays available. In this extreme configuration you can use one of them to install your hard disk drive through the 5.25”-to-3.5” adapter, leaving eleven 5.25” bays to be used.
The cages are fastened to the 5.25” bays through the use of thumbscrews and even though on the factory configuration the cages come installed on the lowest nine bays nothing prevents you from moving them around. For example, you can move one of the cages to the top three 5.25” bays if you’d like to have this configuration for some reason.
Unfortunately this case doesn’t come with any screwless mechanism for installing optical or hard disk drives and it also doesn’t come with thumbscrews, so you have to use regular screws to install disk drives. Hard disk drives must use longer screws that come with the case.
Each hard disk drive cage comes with a 120 mm fan attached (each one with an individual speed control knob, as shown in Figure 4) but if you think you need even more ventilation on certain hard disk drives or simply more airflow inside the case one of the cages come with a plastic stand for you to install an extra 120 mm fan, which doesn’t come with the case.
Each cage also comes with a washable dust filter, which is great.
Twelve Hundred case main specs include:
* Researched at Shopping.com on the day we published this review.
Antec Twelve Hundred is a full tower case targeted to high-end gamers that want a good quality case full of features but don’t want to pay for an aluminum product. Here is a summary of what we found about this case.
In summary, this is a terrific case for users that want a high-end gaming case but don’t want to give an arm to buy a very high-end all-aluminum model.