A Good-Looking Case With A Little Room For Improvement
Aerocool's DS is a compact cube-shaped case that’s able to accommodate powerful gaming hardware, whether you use it in its stock form or add a couple of cooling fans. Its strengths include a nice-looking, lively design and good use of minimal space. Separating the interior into chambers, putting core components up top and everything else down below, helps keep the heat from certain parts from affecting others. In this way, very tall CPU coolers, long graphics cards, and even 240 mm radiators can fit.
The stock cooling solution consists of a 200 mm front fan and a 120 mm rear fan, both of which spin fairly slowly, but still manage to maintain reasonable temperatures. A stock closed top cover can be replaced with an optional mesh one to improve the Dead Silence's thermal performance (particularly if you then choose to utilize the two spaces for additional fans right underneath it).
Aerocool's DS is sturdily-built, relatively quiet, and covered in a nice soft-touch surface. Everything inside is easy to reach during installation, and cable routing (and hiding) works well too, in spite of the enclosure's small size.
There’s some room for improvement as well, though. We'd like to see the rear case fan replaced by something quieter. Aerocool could also have added a fan controller with two settings, the second of which would spin the fans faster, improving the stock configuration's cooling capabilities.
At the end of the day, Aerocool's Dead Silence is an attractive, well-designed, and versatile chassis with plenty of room for enthusiast-oriented hardware in a compact form factor. We liked its estimated price tag, but are less certain about the new MSRP of $120. The fact that it'll be available in so many color combinations is definitely nice, though. If you don't mind making some minor improvements (like replacing the rear case fan), you'll be happy with a small gaming machine based on this case.