Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Review - Media Center Case: Antec Fusion

I recently embarked on a project to build my own Windows Media Center. Thanks to Antec (thanks Susie!), they sent me the Antec Fusion for review.

The Antec Fusion ($219) is the newest member of the LifeStyle family of enclosures from Antec. It is a very solid and beautifully crafted enclosure designed for those who want to integrate their media center with the audio systems. It features the following:
  • Aluminum plate front bezel with Vacuum Fluorescent Display (VFD) and Volume Control to work with media center applications. The VFD displays useful information (controlled by an application shipped with the Antec Fusion), such as RSS feeds, system information, graphic equalizer, email, etc. The Volume Control directly controls the volume of your Windows XP operating system.
  • Triple chamber structure to separate heat and noise of power supply, hard drives and motherboard for cooler and quieter operation.
  • Quiet high-efficiency 430 Watt ATX12V v2.0 power supply with universal input and active PFC.
    Removable HDD brackets with extra soft silicone grommets to reduce vibrational noise. The silicone grommets effectively quiet down my noisy Seagate hard drive and make it virtually silent.
  • Advanced cooling system: 2 x side-mounted 120mm TriCool™ 3-speed fans. The two fans have variable speeds and their speeds can be adjusted using the attached switch – low, medium, and high.
  • 3 Drive Bays
    Front Accessible: 1 x 5.25" (for a DVD drive)
    Internal 2 x 3.5" (for HDDs)
  • 4 Expansion Slots
  • Supports Micro ATX form factor motherboards(9.6" x 9.6")
  • Front-mounted ports for easy multimedia connections – 2 x USB 2.0, 1 x IEEE 1394, Audio In and Out
Due to the design of the Antec Fusion, adding or removing drives (DVD or HDD) is very easy. However, do note that only micro-ATX motherboards are supported.

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