Xilence Interceptor Review
Performance, Testing and Conclusion
It's a cliche, but beauty is most definitely in the eye of the beholder. What appeals to one may not appeal to the other. If you like the looks of this case, and others do not, it doesn't make you wrong, or your opinion less valid, it simply means you have different taste. Personally although I like the gloss black mesh, i'm not a big fan of the chunky plastic edging. The variable geometry roof venting does appeal, as although it's functionality is questionable it does enable you to opt for a variation in the looks of your case. If you're a big fan of meshed side panels then again this case is going to appeal. if you like big windows then i'm afraid it's dremel time. With regards to the rest of the looks, the black and red may have a certain appeal if you're a fan of the "red team", that said it's subtle enough not to intrude if red really isn't your thing. What really confuses me though is the choice of green PCB for the HDD fast swap circuitry. I'd really love to know whether this was a deliberate design choice or an oversight. Either way it's pretty unforgivable.
Having mentioned the fast swap circuitry above it's worth reflecting on the impact these PCBs have on the airflow through the case. With only 2x120mm fans on intake at the front and 1x140mm extracting at the rear, airflow is low to say the least. Factor in the baffle effect that these PCBs have on the airflow and you've got the makings of a really hot and stuffy interior on your hands. Sure you can add in some fans to the side panel and some fans to the roof, but you're going to be adding to the cost of your build, and with the dubious functionality of the roof extract system you're still going to struggle to get the hot air out of your case.
Quality wise there's nothing actually bad about the Interceptor, but then neither does it scream the same level of quality as a Lian Li or a Silverstone. That said, it's not priced like wither of those cases either so you get what you pay for I guess. Don't get me wrong, this case isn't going to fall apart over night, or at any point soon, it's just that it doesn't have the "oooh" factor when you start to dig into it's detail points.
For a case that's trying to cut it with the big boys there are a few noticable ommisions that I can't think would have pushed the cost of the case up too much. For beginners a fan controller would have been a great addition, especially with all the additional fan power points provided by the HDD PCBs. Additional cable tie points wouldn't have broken the bank, neither can I think that perhaps a single 140mm roof fan to go with the one on the rear. And if you're going to throw in some zip ties, at least be generous and give us more than three.
It's not all bad though. You are getting quite a bit for your money here. The fast swap HDD and SSD bays are a real win for the Interceptor, as is the ability to take a 360 rad in the roof without the need for modification. And for an HPTX capable case although it's by no means small it isn't going to totally dominate your desk to the extent that you feel afraid it might crush you if it falls.
And so to the competition. It's fair to say there are getting to be quite a few HPTX capable cases on the market. It's also fair to say that most of them cost a little bit more than the Interceptor, and some, quite a lot more. So if we're going to be fair, (and when aren't we), we have to mention the Xigmatek Elysium. Coming in at £20 less then the £150 Interceptor the Elysium offers just as much, if not more, and has arguably more agreeable aesthetics.
And so to the awards. The Interceptor isn't bad, it's a good case, however, i'm afraid it's not a great case because of this I think a Bronze is fair.