At CES this year I had an opportunity to do something I hadn't done before. We all get to run around and get maybe 20 minutes or so to chat with our company reps, but most of the time in the suites or on the floor are taken up explaining all of the new products. This year I actually got to sit down to lunch with the VP of Marketing from Fractal Design, Josh Smith, and we spent the better part of an hour and a half discussing other companies, as well as the future of Fractal Design. Here it was a light atmosphere, like two old friends having a beer at the bar. What we covered were things like videos of product testing where birdshot was shot from a shotgun at their door panels to see how tough they really were, and I believe I was told 12 shots were taken before the panel was penetrated. We also talked about some up and coming products, but most of that I am not at liberty to discuss at the moment.
What I am able to discuss is that Fractal Design is jumping into the HTPC segment now as well with their first such design. I know a lot of their previous designs may have very well worked in an HTPC environment, due to the way they incorporate sound proofing and noise management into their designs, but there has yet to be a component style design that would look right at home sitting next to your receiver and Blu-ray player. This time around Fractal looked at what they could do specifically for the HTPC crowd, and in my opinion, they didn't do all that bad as far as what this chassis looks like on paper, but at TweakTown, what is on paper is of little consequence, what matters here is the actual product, how it works, and does it do what it is intended for without cutting or frustrating its users.
This newest chassis is from the Node series, the same series that brought us the Node 304. Today we are looking at a chassis that has some resemblance to the 304, but is actually almost two 304's set side by side. This chassis is of course the Node 605 that I have been eluding to, and while keeping what made the 304 so sleek and appealing like the full aluminum front panel, and the black and white color scheme, the Node 605 definitely has a design all its own, and while I have seen similar designs, there is nothing exactly like this that I have seen before.
That in mind, I say we cover what is offered in the specifications, take a look at how it's packed, and dive right into what makes the Node 605 stand out from the others.