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Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact Review: Understated Excellence

A breath of fresh air

Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact
(Image: © Tom's Hardware)

We are using the following system for our case test bed:

CPUIntel Core i9-9900K
MotherboardAsus Maximus XI Hero WiFi
MemoryCorsair Vengeance LPX 3000 MHz, 16 GB (2x 8GB)
GraphicsNvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super Founder's Edition
CPU CoolingNoctua NH-U12S Chromax.Black
 Noctua NT-H2 Thermal Paste
StorageCorsair Force Series MP510 NVMe SSD, 480GB
Power SupplyCorsair HX750i
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Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Installing the motherboard into the Meshify 2 Compact is a breeze. The center standoff anchors the board in place, and because it’s longer than most, it easily held up our Asus motherboard with the Noctua cooler installed at the top. I like this, because it allows me to secure the board into place without having to lay the case on its side. The GPU installed just as easily, though I did need a screwdriver to undo the thumbscrews.

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Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Fractal Design Meshify 2 Compact

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Whereas a handful of ‘compact’ ATX cases have trouble with our large Corsair HX750i power supply, the Meshify 2 Compact didn’t struggle at all. To install the PSU, we first pre-installed all the modular cables, then screwed the rear shield onto the PSU, and slipped in into place and tightened the thumbscrews. With shorter PSUs you can opt to install the cables later on, but we find that it’s generally easier and much quicker to first plug the cables in and then install the power supply.

Cable Management

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

As mentioned earlier, cable management is a strong point of the Meshify 2 Compact. All but one of the access points between the motherboard compartment and the rear of the case have rubber grommets to keep things looking tidy. The case also comes with a neat cable management system with cable guides and tons of Velcro straps. The above picture is after we plugged all the cables in but before tidying them up, with the below picture taken after just 3 minutes of tidying up the slack. Of course, with a cable management system this good, the side panel went on without any fuss.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Build Complete

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

The build process in the Meshify 2 Compact is very straightforward. While some cases have a tendency to make the install process more complicated than it needs to be, that’s not an issue here. All the panels come off without any fuss. The parts all line up nicely on the pre-installed standoffs. The case fans are pre-installed exactly where you want them, and the cable management doesn’t require any forethought to get right. If you’re a first-time builder, you’ll have no trouble building a system in this chassis.

  • MoxNix
    Tom's and their love for RGB lighting... RGB lighting it isn't a plus it's a big minus. This case not having RGB is an important point in it's favor.
    Reply
  • eklipz330
    MoxNix said:
    Tom's and their love for RGB lighting... RGB lighting it isn't a plus it's a big minus. This case not having RGB is an important point in it's favor.
    some people like rgb.

    learn to accept other opinions. it really isn't a big deal.
    Reply
  • MarsISwaiting
    MoxNix said:
    Tom's and their love for RGB lighting... RGB lighting it isn't a plus it's a big minus. This case not having RGB is an important point in it's favor.

    +1 more over , for me tempered Glass is a minus as well , I prefer ventilation on doors for better cooling as well .
    Reply
  • GenericUser
    If anything the RGB should just be left out as far as pros/cons go.
    Reply
  • Colif
    Really, fact they think Fans are good despite not being pwm cancels out another con. Maybe they were stretching and didn't want just 2 negatives. None of the points against are really negative enough to stop people buying case. They likely have a non TG variant, they just send the tg variant around as I guess percentage of people who don't care if its there is higher than those who don't want it.

    RGB should be optional and not built into case as there are enough people around who will avoid the case if its got that. I know the proto stages of RGB 5 years ago made it hard for me to find a case I wanted.

    I like the changes to the front, I wish my Meshify S2 had the door filter system :(
    Reply
  • hushnecampus
    I’ve often wondered about cases like this and the big radiators at the front - are they blowing out or in? If in then you’re blowing hot air in to the case, if out then the filter is in the wrong place. How is this usually arranged?
    Reply
  • Colif
    if the rad is an aio on the front, its intake.

    its works better than you would think.
    having aio on roof of case means all the heat from gpu gets blown through the radiator on way out of case (depends where gpu blows its air, on blower type cards it makes little difference)
    I have my aio as intake
    xNAMxZgvves
    Reply
  • MarsISwaiting
    Colif said:
    if the rad is an aio on the front, its intake.

    its works better than you would think.
    having aio on roof of case means all the heat from gpu gets blown through the radiator on way out of case (depends where gpu blows its air, on blower type cards it makes little difference)
    I have my aio as intake
    xNAMxZgvves

    It depends on the case .. this needs a meshed front case and is better to remove the front filters.

    The roof mounting has a positive as well , no filters needed and better airflow out of the case .
    Reply
  • rluker5
    One thing to consider with cases is if you think you will still like them in a few years.
    I picked up a Fractal Design R4 when I built a rig with sli 780tis, an optical drive and a bunch of HDDs. It is still fine and looks ok, but is huge and has space for a lot of things that are basically obsolete.
    I replaced it with a Define C to get a more reasonably sized pc. It has newer components inside as well, but could still fit everything from the old pc but the optical drive and bunch of currently small capacity 3.5" HDDs.

    I think this Meshify 2 will still look good after life changes that happen over the time it is still useful.

    An angly, rgb case that shouts XTREEM in 2021 probably won't. Neither will gamer chairs or racecar beds.
    Reply