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Fractal Design Define XL R2 Review

For our tests we will be using a Noctua NH-D14  to cool the Intel Core i7-3930K CPU in the Fractal Design Define XL R2. Our test system also features an AMD Radeon HD 7950 graphics card.

We manually overclocked the i7-3930K to 4.7 GHz by increasing the multiplier to 47x, leaving the baseclock set at 100 MHz. We set Load Line Calibration to ‘High’, and increased the CPU Current Capability to 120% with a minor voltage increase. Speed stepping was disabled for both stock and overclocked tests.

Test System:

  • Processor: Intel Core i7-3930K
  • Motherboard: Asus P9X79
  • Cooler: Phanteks Noctua NH-D14
  • Thermal Paste: Arctic Cooling MX-2.
  • Memory: 16GB (4x 4GB) Mushkin Blackline 1600 MHz
  • Graphics Card: AMD Radeon HD 7950.
  • Power Supply: Seasonic Platinum 1000W
  • System Drive: Corsair Force GT 120 GB
  • Monitor: Viewsonic VX2260WM.


  • Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit).
  • CPUID Hardware Monitor.
  • Prime95 64-bit.
  • Furmark V1.10.6

To test the thermal performance of the Fractal Design Define XL R2 we loaded our test system for 15 minutes using Prime95 and Furmark and recorded the maximum temperatures reached using CPUID Hardware Monitor. We then restarted the system and left it for 15 minutes before recording idle temperatures.

Room temperature was maintained at 18 degrees C for the duration of our tests.


The temperatures are about what we would expect from this case considering the specific focus on acoustics rather than airflow.

To conduct our noise level tests, we replaced the graphics card in our system with a AMD Radeon HD 5550 Silence which was passively cooled. We also momentarily disconnected the fans on the CPU cooler so we were only taking into account the noise generated by the fans in the case.


These results are very impressive and really showcase the stellar acoustic performance of this case.

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  1. great cases, have a fractal and am very happy with the sound proofing. only thing is the door is quite flimsy 🙁

  2. I took delivery of my XL R2 case yesterday. One thing I was in awe of is it’s sheer size. It dwarves my old CM 690 II Advanced based system, being about 3″ taller and 1″ wider. Build quality was brilliant, with only one (important) complaint. The supplied motherboard stand-offs were 6.5mm high, should be 8.5mm so the PCIe cards can sit in their slots properly. A quick enquiry led to the correct ones being sent out with a bonus fan for my troubles. I used washers in the meantime to get my system up and running. Apart from that one small issue, I would highly recommend the case (or it’s smaller brother the R4)