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Fractal Design Define 7 Compact Case Review

Accessing the interior of the Define 7 Compact is simple since all side, front and the top panels feature a tool-free solution. Behind the front panel is a pre-installed 140mm Dynamic X2 GP-14 fan. Alternatively, there is space here to install either three 120mm fans, two 140mm fans or up to a 360mm or 280mm radiator.

Located underneath the top panel is a nylon dust filter covering the whole top of the case which slides to the rear to remove. Below the filter is another area to install fans, with space for up to two 120mm/140mm fans or up to a 240mm radiator with size restrictions depending on the height of motherboard components.

Inside the right-hand side of the case is a full cover, vented power supply shroud at the bottom. Towards the front of the power supply shroud are two removable sections to aid large radiator installation and these panels simply clip into position so are tool-free to remove.

Since there is no 5.25-inch bay in the Define 7 Compact, the left-hand side has a very open feel to it. The majority of the cable management cutouts have rubber grommets which is very nice to see on a case of this price range and the cutouts are placed where you would expect.

The motherboard tray can accommodate ATX, micro-ATX and mini-ITX size motherboards as you would expect from a traditional mid-tower case. Motherboard standoffs come pre-installed in the standard ATX locations and pre-installed in the rear panel is a 120mm Dynamic X2 GP-12 fan in an exhaust orientation.

Around the right-hand side of the case, space looks a little tight at the bottom for power supply installation. However, with the removable PSU bracket, the power supply is inserted from the rear which will help. The position of the 3.5-inch HDD cage can be adjusted or removed to allow for more space at the front for radiator installation.

Located on the back of the motherboard tray are two 2.5-inch SSD brackets held in position by a single thumbscrew. These brackets can be removed and fitted in the alternate location on top of the power supply shroud if you want your SSDs to be on display.

 

Behind most of the motherboard tray, there is approximately 20mm of space for cable routing which may sound a little tight. However, to the left-hand side is a recessed section which increases cable routing space to approximately 25mm and we suspect that this is where most of the cable management will take place.

The interior of the Fractal Design Define 7 Compact has some interesting and innovative design features that should help when coming to the installation. The frame of the chassis feels sturdy and the tool-free panel removal is also a very handy feature. There are also plenty of cut-outs, tie-down points and Velcro straps for cable management and two pre-installed fans is a generous amount considering the price of the case.

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