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What is the big difference between Antec 300 and DF series cases?

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April 11, 2011 5:08:33 AM

Hello

What are the big differences between the Antec 300 and DF series cases?

I might want to buy one or the other but want to know why one is better than the other.

I am building a SB computer. My gpu is a GTX 570 and might SLI in the future.
a b ) Power supply
April 11, 2011 5:43:52 AM

Antec 300 is a bit smaller than the DF series (even the smallest DF-10). I have the DF-30 case, and it's just that little bit extra space that makes it a more usable case. I'd get the DF-30 if you are planning on SLI, as the GTX570's aren't small and I wouldn't want to risk needing to buy a new case for the SLI possibility. Interestingly enough, the DF-30 is lighter than the 300, even though it is larger.

Now, in terms of features, the DF-30 has support for 2.5" Drives, which is a massive extra for the SB system as you can then use the cache service with an SSD in your system. It also has an external hot-swap SSD bay - which I think is quite awesome. The DF-30 also has much better cooling than the 300 - it comes standard with 3 x 120mm blue LED fans and one 140mm fan on top. All fans are speed-controllable. I installed another 120mm blue LED on the side panel (really awesome is that the case comes standard with anti-vibration silicone pins for the side fan already fitted - just screw it on and away you go!) and as such my Core 2 Quad, overclocked from 2.66GHz to 3.2GHz, runs at around 32'C idle and about 50'C under load. I have a Cooler Master Hyper 212+ installed with two 120mm fans giving a push-pull effect, blowing air directly out of the rear fan, and they line up as if the case was made for that cooler. It really is awesome. In terms of internal space, the 300 is a bit wider than the DF-30, but it is shorter and not as tall, making internal space for more than one GFX card limited. I have the MSI GTX460 1GB Cyclone GFX card, and even with this card's very high profile, there is more than enough space between its top-protruding heat pipes and the 120mm side intake fan, so the width of the case is more than enough. Lengthwise it is perfect as well - there is about 130mm of space between the edge of the GFX card and the drive bays, so even the biggest cards will fit with ease. Also, with the front access drive bays, struggling to install drives from behind the GFX card is a thing of the past. In terms of height - the case is so high I'm quite sure triple-SLI with three massive cards (like GTX 570's) will be easily possible.

It's a good case, and I'd pick it over the 300. It looks more "business" as well. The CONS of this case as I've found them (and that might influence your decision), is as follows:

* You have to open and close the little front grille-guards over the optical drives every time you want to change a CD/DVD. You get quite used to it though, and I've heard it looks awesome. Meh?

* The side access panel struggles to slide easily into place due to the locking mechanism at the rear. It's not problem once you get used to it, but for the first couple of times it irritates you a bit.

* There is no tool-free maintanence on the case. Bit of a no-no for modders, but I have no problem with it. Feels more secure to me.

* The fans can get a bit noisy once you turn them up. It's a purely windy noise, no rattling or vibration, so I got used to it easily.

* I'm not so sure about the cable management - it's a bit limited. Space behind the mobo is plenty, and it has a little rack with cable tie rings and everything (it even comes with it's own cable tie things that work OK), but I'd have liked some management for the fan cables. I tucked them away so they're not visible, but still... :/ 

Make up your mind - this is my view of the subject.

:) 
April 11, 2011 6:03:58 AM

Toxxyc said:
Antec 300 is a bit smaller than the DF series (even the smallest DF-10). I have the DF-30 case, and it's just that little bit extra space that makes it a more usable case. I'd get the DF-30 if you are planning on SLI, as the GTX570's aren't small and I wouldn't want to risk needing to buy a new case for the SLI possibility. Interestingly enough, the DF-30 is lighter than the 300, even though it is larger.

Now, in terms of features, the DF-30 has support for 2.5" Drives, which is a massive extra for the SB system as you can then use the cache service with an SSD in your system. It also has an external hot-swap SSD bay - which I think is quite awesome. The DF-30 also has much better cooling than the 300 - it comes standard with 3 x 120mm blue LED fans and one 140mm fan on top. All fans are speed-controllable. I installed another 120mm blue LED on the side panel (really awesome is that the case comes standard with anti-vibration silicone pins for the side fan already fitted - just screw it on and away you go!) and as such my Core 2 Quad, overclocked from 2.66GHz to 3.2GHz, runs at around 32'C idle and about 50'C under load. I have a Cooler Master Hyper 212+ installed with two 120mm fans giving a push-pull effect, blowing air directly out of the rear fan, and they line up as if the case was made for that cooler. It really is awesome. In terms of internal space, the 300 is a bit wider than the DF-30, but it is shorter and not as tall, making internal space for more than one GFX card limited. I have the MSI GTX460 1GB Cyclone GFX card, and even with this card's very high profile, there is more than enough space between its top-protruding heat pipes and the 120mm side intake fan, so the width of the case is more than enough. Lengthwise it is perfect as well - there is about 130mm of space between the edge of the GFX card and the drive bays, so even the biggest cards will fit with ease. Also, with the front access drive bays, struggling to install drives from behind the GFX card is a thing of the past. In terms of height - the case is so high I'm quite sure triple-SLI with three massive cards (like GTX 570's) will be easily possible.

It's a good case, and I'd pick it over the 300. It looks more "business" as well. The CONS of this case as I've found them (and that might influence your decision), is as follows:

* You have to open and close the little front grille-guards over the optical drives every time you want to change a CD/DVD. You get quite used to it though, and I've heard it looks awesome. Meh?

* The side access panel struggles to slide easily into place due to the locking mechanism at the rear. It's not problem once you get used to it, but for the first couple of times it irritates you a bit.

* There is no tool-free maintanence on the case. Bit of a no-no for modders, but I have no problem with it. Feels more secure to me.

* The fans can get a bit noisy once you turn them up. It's a purely windy noise, no rattling or vibration, so I got used to it easily.

* I'm not so sure about the cable management - it's a bit limited. Space behind the mobo is plenty, and it has a little rack with cable tie rings and everything (it even comes with it's own cable tie things that work OK), but I'd have liked some management for the fan cables. I tucked them away so they're not visible, but still... :/ 

Make up your mind - this is my view of the subject.

:) 


Thanks, that helps!

With the DF series, what is the big differences between the DF-10, 30, 35?
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a b ) Power supply
April 11, 2011 6:22:29 AM

DF-30 and the DF-35 are exactly the same, but the DF-30 has blue LED fans and the DF-35 has white LED fans. Other than that they are exactly the same. The DF-10 is about the same as the other two - same weight and almost the same size, but it has less fans and no hot-swap bay (as far as I know) - just checking quick... Correct. No hot-swap bay on top. Fans can be fitted at the front, but doesn't come as factory standard.

Thus, the DF-10 isn't as feature rich, so it falls of the table. The DF-30 and DF-35 are the same, with the DF-35 being more expensive for having white LED's instead of blue LED's. Not much cause for a rise in the price IMHO. The DF-30 is looking more and more attractive right now isn't it...? :D 

Oh yes, pro-tip: To avoid a clutter in the thread, refrain from quoting messages as long as the one I typed first. It makes the thread easier to read if you don't. General "thread etiquette" states that you can just comment after the previous poster and it will be assumed that you answered to the previous post by default. :) 
a c 273 ) Power supply
April 11, 2011 8:48:27 AM

The 300 Illusion and 902V3 are much better cases imo..
For # of fans included and solid construction = very little plastic(that's why they weigh more).
On the cheap the Illusion is hard to ignore 4 fans and it's also wider.
Cable management isn't great but a bi-metal holesaw and 15min of your time can easily remedy that.
For $15 more then the DF the 902V3 offers better cooling and is much wider.
The width is important because it makes cpu cooler choices easier..
Both are great case i've owned a 300 and currently run a 902V1.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...
a b ) Power supply
April 11, 2011 10:28:13 AM

I agree with Davcon, as i have all of the above cases (all of which are good), and can honestly say the V3 of Antecs 902 offers the best all round solution for expandability, cooling performance, quality and price.
April 11, 2011 1:30:00 PM

Uther39 said:
I agree with Davcon, as i have all of the above cases (all of which are good), and can honestly say the V3 of Antecs 902 offers the best all round solution for expandability, cooling performance, quality and price.


So the 300 illusionist is different than the regular 300?

davcon said:
The 300 Illusion and 902V3 are much better cases imo..
For # of fans included and solid construction = very little plastic(that's why they weigh more).
On the cheap the Illusion is hard to ignore 4 fans and it's also wider.
Cable management isn't great but a bi-metal holesaw and 15min of your time can easily remedy that.
For $15 more then the DF the 902V3 offers better cooling and is much wider.
The width is important because it makes cpu cooler choices easier..
Both are great case i've owned a 300 and currently run a 902V1.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...


The 902 looks so big. I have seen it in person. That is a huge top fan.

I like the look of the DF and 300 illusionist better.

Hmm, the DFs are nice, well, have to see all of them in person so I can make a decision.
April 11, 2011 1:33:53 PM

Oh yes, pro-tip: To avoid a clutter in the thread, refrain from quoting messages as long as the one I typed first. It makes the thread easier to read if you don't. General "thread etiquette" states that you can just comment after the previous poster and it will be assumed that you answered to the previous post by default. :) [/quotemsg]

I will rememember that.
April 12, 2011 7:45:10 PM

the df series have this military theme
!