Antec Two Hundred Case Review
By Gabriel Torres on October 23, 2009


Introduction

Hardware Secrets Silver Award

Two Hundred is an inexpensive case from Antec, costing only USD 50 in the US. Is it a good choice? Let’s see.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 1: Antec Two Hundred case.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 2: Antec Two Hundred case.

Two Hundred has a small mesh on the left side panel allowing you to install a 120 mm fan there.

The front panel does not come with a door. Two Hundred has three external 5.25” bays and one external 3.5” bay, which is in fact a hot-swap bay for hard disk drives and solid state drives, as we will show you later. The covers used on these bays are not meshed. The bottom part of the front panel, however, is completely meshed, and you can install one or two 120 mm fans behind this mesh.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 3: Front panel.

This case comes with two USB ports and audio jacks on the top part from the front panel.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 4: Connectors.

Introduction (Contíd)

The top panel features a 140 mm fan with a switch available on the rear panel to select between high and low speeds. At low speed it rotates at 800 rpm, producing an airflow of 33.6 cfm and a noise level of 21.8 dBA; at high speed it rotates at 1,200 rpm, producing an airflow of 58.9 cfm and a noise level of 26 dBA. This fan must be connected directly to the power supply, so you can’t monitor its speed through your motherboard.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 5: Top panel.

In Figure 6, you can see the rear panel from Two Hundred. As you can see, the rear panel isn’t painted. The power supply is installed on the bottom of the case, a feature that is usually only available on more expensive cases. There is a 120 mm fan on the rear panel also with a switch for you to select between two speeds.  At low speed it rotates at 900 rpm, producing an airflow of 30.1 cfm and a noise level of 16.9 dBA; at high speed it rotates at 1,500 rpm, producing an airflow of 51.2 cfm and a noise level of 27.9 dBA.

This case has two holes for you to pass hoses from water cooling devices, but these holes must be broken to be used: no rubber protection is available. Also the slot covers used are from that type that needs to be broken, usually found on low-end cases.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 6: Rear panel.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 7: Switches for selecting the speed of the rear and top fans (low/high).

The right panel features a tab for installing a padlock or a warranty seal, if you want to restrict people from opening the case.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 8: Tab for installing a padlock or warranty seal.

Now let’s take a look inside Two Hundred from Antec.

Inside Two Hundred

Both panels are fastened to the case using thumbscrews, which is excellent. In Figure 9 we have an overall look from inside Two Hundred. As you can see, the interior isn’t painted. This first thing that caught our attention was the presence of a big hole on the motherboard tray to give you access to the CPU cooler back plate, allowing you to replace your CPU cooler with a more powerful model without the need of removing the motherboard from the chassis. No holes for routing cables behind the motherboard tray is available.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 9: Overall look.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 10: A view from behind the motherboard tray.

Daughter boards are fastened to the case using regular screws.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 11: Rear and top panels viewed from inside the case.

This case does not have an air intake mesh on its bottom panel. Usually on cases where the power supply goes on the bottom part, the power supply must be installed with its fan facing down, and thus the case must have a mesh matching the position of this fan so air can flow. On Two Hundred, however, the power supply must be installed with its fan facing up, eliminating the need for this mesh.

The Disk Drive Bays

This case has three external 5.25” bays, one external 3.5” bay and six internal 3.5” bays for hard disk drives. This case does not provide any kind of screwless mechanism for the drives.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 12: Drive bays.

The external 3.5” bay is not targeted to floppy disk drives but to 3.5” hard disk drives or solid state drives (SSD’s): it comes with hot swap connectors (see Figure 13). The cover for this external bay is in fact a door with a spring, which you can easily push down while installing a drive. When a drive is installed on this bay, around ½” (1 cm) of the front part of the drive is kept outside the case. To remove the drive, you must first press a release button available on the front panel.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 13: Hot swap connectors on external 3.5” bay.

Antec Two Hundred case
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Figure 14: Accessories.

Main Specifications

Antec Two Hundred case main specs include:

* Researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.

Conclusions

Antec Two Hundred is a mid-tower case targeted to the user that wants an inexpensive mid-tower case with some interesting features. Here is a summary of what we found about this product.

Strong Points

  • Hot swap external bay for one 3.5” hard drive or solid state drive.
  • Good mesh on the front panel in front of the hard disk drives.
  • Hole in the motherboard tray for accessing the backplate of the CPU cooler.
  • No sharp edges where you could cut yourself while building your PC.
  • Good number of hard disk drive bays (six, plus the hot swap bay).
  • Two-speed controller for the top and rear fans.
  • Excellent price.

Weak Points

  • Bay covers could be meshed.
  • Slot covers could be meshed.
  • No eSATA port.
  • No noise absorbing mechanisms for the hard disk drives.
  • No screwless mechanisms for installing drives.
  • No support for floppy disk drives (who still uses a floppy anyway?).

Although very well priced, other products on the same price range may offer a better selection of features for the average user, like Cooler Master Gladiator 600 and NZXT M59 – unless, of course, you can’t live without the external hot-swap bay.

Originally at http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/Antec-Two-Hundred-Case-Review/847


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