Hardware Installation & Test Configuration
Included accessories for the Silent Base 601 are various screws, zip ties, an extra removable 2.5-inch / 3.5-inch drive bay. The box also contains a printed manual.
Painted black to match the exterior, the interior of the Silent Base 601 is very spacious and features a clutter-free design. There are three large cable pass-through holes with rubber grommets (with the same color as the exterior accent trim) in the motherboard tray for cable management. The hole at the upper left-hand edge of the motherboard tray is specifically designed for routing fan cables and the ATX12V / EPS12V power cable.
The seven (plus two vertical) expansion slots will accommodate graphics cards up to 449mm, even in multi-GPU configurations. The vertical VGA GPU slots allow end users to install a PCIe x16 riser cable to show off their bright and shiny GPUs by mounting it vertically, but the riser cable is sold separately. You can use CPU air coolers up to 185mm tall.
The spec sheet lists support for "standard ATX PS2-Style PSUs." During testing, we fitted this chassis with power supplies up to 220mm in length without any issues. Those needing even more space have the option of removing the hard drive cage.
There are two mounting locations for 2.5-inch / 3.5-inch hard drives under the power supply tunnel closest to the front of the chassis. Additionally, you can mount up to six 2.5-inch hard drives under the PSU tunnel, behind the motherboard tray and in the hard drive cage included with the accessories.
Those needing more hard drive mounting locations can add four 3.5-inch or eight 2.5-inch drives by purchasing optional hard drive cages from the manufacturer. All drive caddies are made of metal and come with rubber grommets for vibration dampening.
In the past, the company included plastic block-off panels to cover the holes in the motherboard when not filled with an optional hard drive case. No block-off plates come with the Silent Base 601; since you can't see through the metal side panel, there is no need.
Even though this chassis is a targeting the quiet computing crowd, it's still a bit odd to only include a single 140mm Pure Wings 2 front intake fan. There is another 140mm Pure Wings 2 exhaust fan behind the CPU socket area. We'll see if this fan combination has an adverse impact on cooling later in this review.
There is a three speed fan control switch on the front of the chassis that allows you to adjust the fan speeds from 500 to 1,000 rpm.
Those of you that prefer liquid cooling will appreciate the fact that radiators and all-in-one coolers up to 360mm can be mounted in the top and front of this case. The mounting location in the front of the chassis can easily support radiators up to 360mm (280mm with the PSU tunnel in place) sandwiched between fans in a push-pull configuration. Radiators over 280mm require the removal of the plastic panel insert in the top of the PSU tunnel for clearance.
There is a total of 39mm of clearance for radiators and coolers in the space above the motherboard. Much like the removable fan/radiator brackets we've seen in other chassis, such as the Corsair Obsidian Series 500D and the Phanteks Enthoo Evolv, installing radiators and fans is a simple matter of removing two screws and sliding the unit out and away from the chassis. Once you've attached your cooling components to the bracket, you'll slide the entire setup back into your system and reinstall the screws. Generally speaking, if you want to install radiators and all-in-one coolers in a push-pull configuration in this location, you will need to utilize the outermost mounting slots to avoid clearance issues with motherboard components. The rear of the chassis supports 120 / 140mm radiators or all-in-one coolers in the exhaust fan location over the CPU socket area in single and dual-fan configurations.
Note that the sound dampening material and the limited airflow provided by the six slots in the top make this a less-than-ideal mounting location for dual / triple fan radiators and all-in-one coolers.
Drivers & Settings
|Chipset||Intel INF 10.1.1.42|
|CPU||4GHz (40x 100MHz) @ 1.1V core|
|Motherboard||Firmware 1.10 3/2/2018|
|Graphics||Maximum Fan for Thermal Tests | NVIDIA GeForce 398.36 WHQL Game Ready Driver|
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