Test Results And Conclusion
We continue to use our reference PC with its reference overclock for case testing, apart from replacing the X99S XPower AC with the X99S Gaming 7. That replacement has allowed us to compare tighter "Standard ATX" cases, since the XPower motherboard is oversize.
Noise is measured .5m from the case's front corner, on the side that opens. The numbers are corrected to the 1m industry standard -- used by many loudspeaker and fan manufacturers -- by subtracting six decibels.
Drivers And Settings
|Chipset||Intel INF 188.8.131.529|
|CPU||4.2GHz (42x 100MHz) @ 1.2V Core|
|Motherboard||Firmware 17.8 (02/10/2015)|
|RAM||XMP CAS 16 Defaults (1.2V)|
|Graphics||Maximum Fan for Thermal Tests | Nvidia GeForce 347.52|
The Enthoo Evolv ATX Tempered Glass starts out with remarkably cool temperatures, given the relatively small size of our CPU cooler. Even when handicapped to a 50 percent duty cycle by the motherboard's PWM-based fan controller, it outpaces our two most closely-priced mid-tower review samples.
Tempered glass side panels help isolate internal component noise in the Evolv Tempered Glass case, though the close proximity between full-fan and 50 percent duty-cycle still indicates that internal components make up the bulk of the noise detected. Comparatively, the other two cases appear to get a larger portion of total noise from case fans.
An improved cooling-to-noise ratio results from better cooling at similar noise levels, as the Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ATX Tempered Glass takes a lead in overall performance.
Unfortunately, the Enthoo Evolv ATX Tempered Glass also costs about 25 percent more than the Carbide 600C, putting it at a competitive disadvantage in the value comparison.
Pitting a 12 percent performance advantage against a 6 percent value disadvantage could create a problem for our final analysis, but it doesn't need to. If you're willing to spend an extra $30 for the Enthoo Evolv ATX Tempered Glass's 3mm-thick aluminum face, top panel, and feet, and then another $10 for the tempered glass side panels, you're still left with that 12 percent performance advantage. Fussy buyers should have no problem making that justification.
On the other hand, the award contention remains contentious. Due to the value score, it's impossible to give this one our "Recommended" stamp of approval. And while it would qualify for our "Editors' Choice" award, the fact that it can't hold a 10.7inch-deep motherboard or a (double slot) graphics card in the motherboard's bottom slot means I probably wouldn't choose it for a premium system. You might. Better performance qualifies it for our "Approved" award, without forcing me to make any quality-based justifications.