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Fractal Design Define XL R2 Black Pearl Full-Tower Chassis Review

By: Chad Sebring | Full-Tower Cases in Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: Feb 7, 2013 10:29 am
TweakTown Rating: 99%Manufacturer: Fractal Design

Fractal Design Define XL R2 Black Pearl Full-Tower Chassis




From the front of the XL R2 you see only the thinnest of plastic trim around the edges and the right side is slightly inset to allow grip to open the front panel. What you are left to look at here is just the LED top center and a large expanse of black brushed aluminum.




Inside the door there is foam to deaden noises to the user. Behind the door you have four bay covers that are removable from the outside of the case. Below those bays you have another door that will sling left that is a dust filter for the pair of fan spots in the ray that you can pull out and clean.




In the original, Fractal Design sent a basic fan controller that you had to install. With the XL R2 you now just have to get in behind the door, and you can flip the switch mounted there to control up to three fans inside the case at 12V, 7V, and 5V for customizable cooling and noise level.




The front I/O is part of the front bezel, but since you don't have to remove the bezel, it is of little consequence. It does offer HD Audio on the left of the tiny reset button. Centered are the power button and LED and then you have a pair both of USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports to finish things off.




Further back on the top of the XL R2 you will find room for a pair of 120mm fans. Even with the honeycomb mesh cut into the steel, these are currently backed with sound proof panels as part of the ModuVent system.




Looking now at the left side of the XL R2, you get a lot of the familiar thick and heavy steel in this panel. It also offers a ModuVent opening at the video card level if you want to add a 140mm or 120mm fan there. You can now also see the venting I was describing in the side of the bezel.




In the back is room above the rear I/O to allow for water cooling up there. Next to the I/O is the rear exhaust fan, and below it are nine expansion slots to use. That leaves the opening at the bottom for a power supply.




The right side of the chassis looks almost exactly like the left side. Instead of offering room for a fan you are left with just more steel panel on this side.




Under the chassis you can see larger feet are used in the front, but to offset for the removable fan filter, smaller feet were needed in the back. There is nothing to worry about though; I assure you there is proper footing with this set up.

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