Shrinking the new Phantom layout from what was the Phantom 630 super-tower down to what we see in the Phantom 530 was a good move in my opinion. While not as roomy as the larger version, the Phantom 530 took every advantage it could with the layout and what is offered. At first, I had not checked the specs of this chassis, when I opened the box; it really was my first look at this design. It was then that I was constantly being impressed at almost every turn. Externally, well it is a Phantom, you either love it or hate it, and there is a defined line in the sand there. Internally, the chassis really stays true to what has made all of the latest submissions since the Switch 810 release, such a huge deal in the realm of any cases on the market.
There really is nothing dysfunctional, or anything about this chassis that I would change. If I were to complain about something, I would have liked a fan in the top, more to the point, I would have liked a 200mm one there. Looking at it from the perspective of NZXT, even if one were included, with all the AIO users, and the guys that are crazy for water cooling, it would likely spend its life in the box after its removal for your own ideas of the perfect cooling solution. I will say that the two fan arrangement works pretty well, but I also know that the open concept of the mesh side panel, the ventilation for the front, and the natural convective flow of air out the top of this chassis play into the cooling efficiency that it displays out of the box. On top of that, the choice of fans here are almost silent, where just a slight hum could be heard from a foot or two away from the chassis.
The layout and options given in this case are what really sold me. The hard drive bays, everyone is offering them not, but not the way NZXT does. You can completely re-arrange them, hang what you want, where you want, and you even get a place to mount another fan if you keep the triple bay section in the chassis. The wire management is top notch as well, and even with the SSD in the back, and all the wiring sans the two PCI power leads, the right panel is no issue to place back on. I mean it when I say that NZXT gave you their all in this design, solid construction, tons of options, great cable management, all in a chassis that looks this cool.
This chassis is very stiff competition to any chassis in the full-tower lineup, I don't care who made it. I know I just raved about how much I liked the S71, but all Phantom cases hit you in a different way aesthetically. You honestly do get your money's worth in this chassis, and the only thing missing in comparison to the S71 is the HDD dock, but in most other aspects, it beats the Thermaltake Urban chassis. With the sweet and gentle pricing of just less than $140 to get this chassis to your door, I only have one question at this point. Why are you not shopping for yours right now?
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