Date: September 16th, 2010
Article by: Joe Anderson (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited By: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Antec
<--CLICK FOR PRICES ON AN ANTEC DF-85 DARK FLEET CASE IN THE UNITED STATES
<--CLICK FOR PRICES ON AN ANTEC CASE IN CANADA
PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS AND FEATURES
As one might expect, the DF-85 is a big, heavy chassis that will hold a huge amount of hardware. Supporting Mini-ITX mobos as well as the more common mATX and ATX boards and graphics cards up to 12.5-inches in length, the DF-85 will satisfy the needs of the vast majority of power users. Up to 14 drive bays and hot-swap features, along with USB 3.0 support give the chassis modern functionality and the enhanced cable management and dust control features add convenience while the blacked-out interior, side window and LED fans add some style. Seven included fans (with room for another on the side panel,) and liquid cooling features will serve to keep even the most demanding hardware set cool and happy. We'll go over all this as we progress through the review, but I like what I see so far.
The heavy cardboard carton has a glossy finish and Antec uses the large areas of the front and rear to illustrate some of the innovative features and specifications that the DF-85 offers, relegating the full image of the case to one side panel. Inside, the Dark Fleet is protected by a heavy plastic bag and sandwiched between two large, sturdy foam blocks. This example arrived at the lab inside another brown cardboard box for increased security and protection, but may not come this way from your retailer. The side window is further protected by plastic film and the product overview sheet and hardware are shipped outside the case in their own plastic bag, and Antec includes some plastic wire ties as well.
With the packing materials removed, you can see that the DF-85 has a unique, updated look while still retaining the chevron detail on the side window, reminiscent of the earlier Nine Hundred and Twelve Hundred cases. The black monochrome finish gives the case a unified look and relies on the side window and front panel accents for its visual impact. There is also a placement on the side window for adding an optional 120mm fan to enhance graphics card cooling should the user find it necessary.