Fractal Define 7/Define 7 XL Review
Published: 20th February 2020 | Source: Fractal Design | Price: |
Define 7 - The Special Features
A lot has changed since the release of Fractal's R6, and in this part of the review, we intend to highlight those changes. For starters, Fractal has opened up the top portion of their case by making their Define 7 enclosure easy to disassemble. Four pop mounts, and the top panel is off. A quick slide of the top dust filter, and it is now off the chassis and ready to be cleaned. A few screws unfastened, and the entire top plate of the case is removed for easy radiator and fan mounting.
While the whole case isn't designed in this way, Fractal's decision to make their case's top panel removable has undoubtedly improved the Define 7's building experience. The change has gifted PC builders more room to add their favourite motherboards, cooling solutions and more. The Define 7 XL features the same removable top plate design, a feature that's arguably more important on the XL due to the sheer scale of the EATX motherboards that that enclosure is designed to accommodate.
Next up is Fractal's movable HDD cover plate, a design feature which allows the Define 7 to accommodate a large number of HDDs or act as a read blocking plate for the enclosure. This contributes greatly to the Define 7's clean and sharp aesthetic and offers users a level of versatility that few enclosures can match. Fractal could have made another case with a water cooling focused front or another enclosure HDD focused enclosure. With the Define 7, Fractal has delivered both, and it is glorious.
Outside of the Define 7's 3.5/2.5-inch mounts, the case also features two dedicated 2.5-inch drive mounts behind the case's motherboard tray and two additional mounts on top of the case's PSU shroud.
Within the Define 7 and its XL variant comes a specialised mount which can be used to mount water cooling pumps, reservoirs, HDDs and more. While this mount is ugly, due to the need to support an insane number of components and their required mounting holes, it again adds to the versatility of the Define 7 and Define 7 XL and enables the mounting of more components without the need to drill holes into your system.
This mount can also be used to mount additional HDDs at the top of the enclosure, replacing the case's fan mounts. We don't recommend this solution for aesthetic reasons, but PC builders who simply need more HDD space may find this solution useful.
Fractal's Define 7 and Define 7 XL both feature integrated fan controllers, which feature support for up to six 3-pin fans and three PWM fans. This should be enough to accommodate the need of most systems, By default, Fractal's Define 7 ships with three 140mm Fractal Dynamic GP-14 fans.