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Antec shows off P280 prototype

Antec shows off P280 prototype

The P280 takes it's design cues from the P180, a case we liked very much

Today at Computex 2011 we were treated to a sneaky first look at Antec’s forthcoming P280 case which is billed as the spiritual successor to the near legendary P180.

The case clearly carries over some visual design elements from its predecessor, such as the large, metal door that can be opened a full 270 degrees to lie flat against the left-hand side of the case. The internal design of the chassis has been significantly changed however, with Antec opting for a single- rather than dual-chamber design.

This, Antec explained, was simply to make the cable routeing easier, as it’s no longer necessary to completely isolate the PSU in the way that the P180 did. This is because most PSUs use bottom-mounted fans these days so they can be easily isolated by placing them in the lower corner of a case with their own dedicated intake.

The drive bay focus of the case has also changed, with more 3.5in bays and fewer 5.25in bays now available. The cooling available has seen a revamp too with three of Antec’s new silicone-mounted fans acting as exhausts in the top and rear of the case. These are all powered by connections to a small PCB which requires a single Molex connection. In theory, this should lead to less cable clutter in the case.

The side panels of the case are lined with compressed polymer sheets which Antec claims offer the same amount of noise reduction as the triple-layer side panels found on the P100-series of cases.

The case we saw was only an engineering sample, but Antec said that it was ‘pushing hard' to have the case ready for release in time for Christmas. It also hinted that the MSRP was likely to be around the €100 mark which should mean the P280 hits UK shores at £70 to £80.

How did you get on with the original P180? Are you on the look out for a new, sleek-looking case? Let us know your thoughts in the forum.

Antec shows off P280 prototype Antec show off P280 prototype Antec shows off P280 prototype Antec show off P280 prototype

Antec shows off P280 prototype Antec show off P280 prototype Antec shows off P280 prototype Antec show off P280 prototype

45 Comments

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Tangster 3rd June 2011, 18:05 Quote
Do want.
l3v1ck 3rd June 2011, 18:09 Quote
Shame there's no built in mounts for 2.5" SSD's.
faugusztin 3rd June 2011, 18:16 Quote
Antec - the story of the company who screwed up their own core business with bad decisions.

Seriously. This is not Performance One series case. This is P-LanBoy. With this design change, it will be just one another case from some case manufacturer.
mclean007 3rd June 2011, 18:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Antec - the story of the company who screwed up their own core business with bad decisions.

Seriously. This is not Performance One series case. This is P-LanBoy. With this design change, it will be just one another case from some case manufacturer.
Expand. What are you talking about?!
mclean007 3rd June 2011, 18:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by l3v1ck
Shame there's no built in mounts for 2.5" SSD's.
Really? Just use an adaptor, like everyone else does. What is the advantage of a dedicated 2.5" mount in a full sized case? OK in a SFF case I can see the benefit, but there's not exactly a shortage of space in this thing!
Paradigm Shifter 3rd June 2011, 19:00 Quote
It's a bit more 'random angles' than the old P180, though. :(

The P180 wasn't 'triple layer' in a lot of places, either. The bottom was bare metal, the top was metal with a bit of plastic stuck on it with what amounted to Copydex, and the front was the traditional bare metal with plastic moulding popped on.

Having said that, if it fits the hardware I want inside it, keeps all the bits cool and is quiet while doing that, I'll be tempted.
Cobalt 3rd June 2011, 19:03 Quote
That looks sweet. If it follows on the pedigree of the P180 then this will probably house my sandy bridge system (damned rent getting in the way so far lol). Hopefully I'll have my new job by then.
faugusztin 3rd June 2011, 19:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclean007
Expand. What are you talking about?!

Expand ? What ?

1) NSK, ISK, Fusion, Skeleton, x Hundred series is OK for what it is. Some older cases are OK too.
2) P183 is a screwed up version of P182, because of those front openings. But it sort of acceptable.
3) When i first saw P193 my first reaction was "what the hell are they drinking, this is not a race car which needs extra wings". Yes, i talk about that thing on the side.
4) Sonata IV and Elite. Seriously ? The holes on the sides are horrible.
5) Lanboy Air is again in the "what the hell are they drinking" category. My feelings are best described by this Mod Men episode :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d55Qsxcogb8#t=0m52s
6) Dark Fleet - the only expression which can describe this series is "WTF".

In my opinion the last good ATX/mATX cases released by Antec were P182, Solo and Fusion Remote/Max. Since then, it's going downhill.

Or you mean the "P-Lanboy" comment ? Perfomance One series cases are quality products. Plastic hard drive holders ? Plastic and screwless 5,25" device mount ?
What is the point of having sound insulated side panels and front door, when you let all the noise escape through top fan mounts ? The difference between sound going out at back and at top is extreme.
PS: I hope the orange stuff is just because it's prototype.
Jack_Pepsi 3rd June 2011, 19:17 Quote
Gross.

Fractal Design FTW!
Instagib 3rd June 2011, 19:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by l3v1ck
Shame there's no built in mounts for 2.5" SSD's.

Actually, i think there's provision for two at the top of the hdd caddies. Take a look on hexus, they've a quick video peek of this case.
wuyanxu 3rd June 2011, 19:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
"P-Lanboy" comment

agree!

This is no successor to P1, this is a successor to Lanboy with covered up parts.

Isolated areas, and ability to use super long graphics cards (600T approach when not isolated bays).
KidMod-Southpaw 3rd June 2011, 21:55 Quote
The price seems good, but to me it just looks like another R3. We'll see.
azrael- 3rd June 2011, 22:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by KidMod-Southpaw
The price seems good, but to me it just looks like another R3. We'll see.
You DO know that, if anything, the R3 is a P18x rip-off?

That being said, the P280 looks just that bit too plasticky, although it's still better looking than most cases out there. What irks me are the new drive bays. I really liked the removable compartments in the P18x.

I'm wondering how the SPCR crowd will take to this updated version, though.
sleepygamer 3rd June 2011, 22:12 Quote
I kinda like it!

I wouldn't normally dig it, but this looks kinda nice. Will keep my eyes on that one.
jrs77 3rd June 2011, 22:28 Quote
I'd take a Fractal Define R3 instead.

However, Antec has still some good cases, like the ISK-100 or 300 for example, which is nice for low power miniITX-systems and the Antec Threehundred is still a real good budget-case at $50.
Technobod 3rd June 2011, 23:26 Quote
Can't really say I'm loving the orange bits on the fan mounts, It just looks funny when they've bothered to colour match the interior but there isn't anything else orange...
Pieface 4th June 2011, 01:54 Quote
I know it's off topic, but I can't get onto the forums o_O I asked on Twitter to no avail. Can anyone tell me whats going on through this article, or through twitter at @dominicpybus

It just won't load the content, either on Safari or Firefox.

EDIT: I write this post, then suddenly I can get on easily..
leslie 4th June 2011, 04:34 Quote
Just re-release the P182 (matx tower edition as well?).
That was such a great case.
Make the frame aluminum and you have pure heaven (it was awfully heavy).

I agree though, they have sort of lost their way. This looks more like a fusion of the 1200, and P183. While I have a 300, I don't like the 1200 and it's ilk. I want clean lines on a case, not this angular stuff with fans showing all over or those stupid orange clips. I get it, it's tooless, but seriously, some of this stuff is going too far. Screws are good! Besides, it's not like I swap fans daily or anything so who cares if I have to undo a screw or 4 to change one.
docodine 4th June 2011, 05:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by azrael-
I'm wondering how the SPCR crowd will take to this updated version, though.

IIRC the founder of SPCR was heavily involved in the design of the P180, wonder if this one went through the same process.
mp3manager 4th June 2011, 06:38 Quote
I've got a P180 & P182 and I love them both but both are let down by the same thing......the case feet. Stupid rubber things which are glued on but come off far too easily.

I keep mine under the desk and because the case is that heavy (and I'm disabled), I can't lift it completely off the floor when moving it, so I have to drag it slightly....and the case feet come off.

Surely they must be able to design better feet for the case?
azrael- 4th June 2011, 10:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leslie
Just re-release the P182 (matx tower edition as well?).
That was such a great case.
Make the frame aluminum and you have pure heaven (it was awfully heavy).

I agree though, they have sort of lost their way. This looks more like a fusion of the 1200, and P183. While I have a 300, I don't like the 1200 and it's ilk. I want clean lines on a case, not this angular stuff with fans showing all over or those stupid orange clips. I get it, it's tooless, but seriously, some of this stuff is going too far. Screws are good! Besides, it's not like I swap fans daily or anything so who cares if I have to undo a screw or 4 to change one.
It was supposed to be heavy for a reason. More weight, less resonance. But I totally agree with you, there's room for a bit more aluminium. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by docodine
IIRC the founder of SPCR was heavily involved in the design of the P180, wonder if this one went through the same process.
In part that was why I mentioned SPCR. Took a quick glance at the SPCR forums (there's nothing on the main page) and people seem divided. Personally, I can't blame them. I'm wondering how close the release version will be to this prototype. The exterior looks good, but I hope they put more work into the interior.
WestHej 4th June 2011, 10:54 Quote
Personally I don't care how the interior looks in the slightest. I'd only open it if I need to change something otherwise it'll be shut 99.9% of the time. As long as it is cool and very quiet with a mid-high range system inside then I'll gladly take this for £70-80.
alpaca 4th June 2011, 10:57 Quote
i don't really like what they've done by opening it up (as in, no two chambers anymore). I have the P182 and one of the joys is that every dust filter is easily accesible from in front of the case.
At home my brother has a P182 mini, which has one of the filters on the bottom (like this one does) and its always a pain to get them out. luckily my mother keeps the house cleaner than i do my room...
Bakes 4th June 2011, 11:14 Quote
What happened to dividing the case for superior thermal and noise performance?
faugusztin 4th June 2011, 12:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by WestHej
Personally I don't care how the interior looks in the slightest. I'd only open it if I need to change something otherwise it'll be shut 99.9% of the time. As long as it is cool and very quiet with a mid-high range system inside then I'll gladly take this for £70-80.

With 2 fans on top, or 2 big holes if you remove them ? No, it won't be silent, nor quiet.
Jipa 4th June 2011, 15:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bakes
What happened to dividing the case for superior thermal and noise performance?

The noticed it's waste of space and make installation trickier? I've never understood how the damn dividing wall was supposed to REALLY help anything. With a passively cooled power supply and with the extra fan in the middle it made some sense, but other than that it was just stupid.

I like the looks, thank god they got rid of the P183 door vents. That said I don't like the orange bits, the vented expansion slot covers(just draws in dust) or the fixed drive cage with plastic HDD-holders.

Then again, the original P180 needed some modding to be really good as well. And while I like how Fractal Design blocks the unwanted fan vents, it's still better to have extra ones than not many enough. It's hardly a surprise that Antec can't - or doesn't want to - make a case just for the 2% (stats from my arse) of users that are the most enthusiastic about silence. They make a case for the 20%, many of which don't mind, or can live with the roof vents.

After all it's the stuff that's inside the case is always going to make the difference, not the case...
faugusztin 4th June 2011, 15:54 Quote
@Jipa: You know, the issue is - Perfomance One series case is about nothing else but silence. P280 belongs to Performance One series. And they do care about the silence, too bad that with P280 they stopped way too soon. Seriously, the front door, the soundproof side panels are not worth anything when all the noise escapes through roof.
HourBeforeDawn 4th June 2011, 19:34 Quote
this is in no way a P series case, I mean those fans in there are for silent HTPC like style systems as they push next to no air.

This is overall a fail in my book... what happened Antec???
DbD 4th June 2011, 22:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
@Jipa: You know, the issue is - Perfomance One series case is about nothing else but silence. P280 belongs to Performance One series. And they do care about the silence, too bad that with P280 they stopped way too soon. Seriously, the front door, the soundproof side panels are not worth anything when all the noise escapes through roof.

There not all about silence, they are about balancing low noise with high performance. If you want silence you want one of those fan-less radiator cases.

I still use a modded P180 - been very happy with it - not sure why I need to replace it tbh.
faugusztin 4th June 2011, 22:50 Quote
Well, with two top mounted fans, you can forget low noise too. You don't even need fans there, simply having a hole in the top equals it's not low noise.
adidan 4th June 2011, 22:51 Quote
I like my P183. Door quiet and closed for web/films, open the door for gaming as I can't hear it.

Don't like the looks of this personally.
Fod 4th June 2011, 23:00 Quote
Routing. Not routeing. Sorry, seen this in a couple articles now. /grammarnazi
Spreadie 4th June 2011, 23:48 Quote
I had the P182se a few years ago - lovely quiet, understated case, though not a lot of space inside TBH.

I got bored of the looks, which is why I'm no fan of the P280 or the Fractal R3 (be original ffs). Theres plenty of middle ground between the P180 and something fugly like the Darkfleet or HAF cases, surely someone can try?
Jipa 5th June 2011, 10:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
@Jipa: You know, the issue is - Perfomance One series case is about nothing else but silence. P280 belongs to Performance One series. And they do care about the silence, too bad that with P280 they stopped way too soon. Seriously, the front door, the soundproof side panels are not worth anything when all the noise escapes through roof.

You do realize the original had a roof fan as well - and a fugly one at that. So what exactly is the big deal? If you don't want a roof fan, just block it, just like you had to with the original. Again, it's much easier to block unwanted holes than drill new ones when you need extra airflow.
MiNiMaL_FuSS 5th June 2011, 11:59 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
@Jipa: You know, the issue is - Perfomance One series case is about nothing else but silence. P280 belongs to Performance One series. And they do care about the silence, too bad that with P280 they stopped way too soon. Seriously, the front door, the soundproof side panels are not worth anything when all the noise escapes through roof.

somebody didnt pay attention in physics. Just a single strip of sound absorbant material tactially placed can help dampen sounds, sounds 'bounces' and the more it reverbirates the more audiable it is. it's not about sealing it in by covering all the holes to stop it escaping, it's about absorbing it with materials placed near sources of sound.
faugusztin 5th June 2011, 12:58 Quote
@MiNiMaL_Fuss: No offense, but i know how big difference it makes for example in Define R3 when i just remove the Moduvent from just one of the top fan positions. same with PC-A05N. With Moduvent installed, you can't hear anything with my fans running at 600RPM. Open it up, and you will hear them.
MiNiMaL_FuSS 5th June 2011, 23:47 Quote
Yes but the R3 uses lesser damperning tech than the p180/2 do. In-fact if you read most fo the very early reviews of the R3 it's often described as a budget verion p182.

I'm not saying adding dampening to the other areas dosn't help, it does of course. What I'm objecting to is your earlier notion that having sound absorbent side panels is pointless if the roof of the case isn't also done, simply put, it dosn't work like that, it would help yes, but just having one side panel would also help alot.
rv88uk 5th June 2011, 23:55 Quote
Whilst the silent aspect was a great selling point, it was the looks that got me to buy the p180. Finally a case that didn't look like it was designed by/for teenagers. Now there are quite a few options for those who prefer more discrete cases, fractal design is the obvious choice in the same broad price category. I'm going for a Silverstone FT02 which offers premium features (kind of sounds like a sales pitch) without the need for 'aggressive angles' or other such 'features'/monstrosities. Antec is going to have to make one hell of a case to stand out from the market like the original p180 did.
leslie 6th June 2011, 01:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiNiMaL_FuSS

I'm not saying adding dampening to the other areas dosn't help, it does of course. What I'm objecting to is your earlier notion that having sound absorbent side panels is pointless if the roof of the case isn't also done, simply put, it dosn't work like that, it would help yes, but just having one side panel would also help alot.

I have to agree here.

While Antec separated everything for cooling reasons, it also helps contain the noise from each area. Stand in an empty warehouse and every noise is heard throughout. Put up a few walls, or impediments to the sound and it quiets down fast, even if they don't reach the ceiling. An empty case is like a big acoustic chamber just waiting to echo anything inside. If the sound is stopped before it ever gets to the roof, you won't hear it no matter how open the roof is.

For example, the separate drive chamber helped dampen the noise from reaching the main chamber, any noise that did make it through, was further dampened by the main chamber before it had a chance to exit the top. Every bit of damping adds another level before the sound gets out. You can add as much damping as you want to an R3, and it will be hard pressed to equal the noise damping of a 180 because you are dealing with a single larger chamber.


As for roof vents, I'm a bit opposed to them pointing straight out. No matter what you do, any grill there is going to create noise (fans blowing against anything creates some noise). It may be low, but it at least has the potential. Which was part of the reason for the "snorkel" on the 180. It deflected that noise towards the rear of the case. I didn't like the look of it, but it was effective.
kenco_uk 6th June 2011, 01:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3manager
I've got a P180 & P182 and I love them both but both are let down by the same thing......the case feet. Stupid rubber things which are glued on but come off far too easily.

I keep mine under the desk and because the case is that heavy (and I'm disabled), I can't lift it completely off the floor when moving it, so I have to drag it slightly....and the case feet come off.

Surely they must be able to design better feet for the case?

This is the reason why I'm sticking to my Coolermaster Cosmos as it's so much easier to slide in and out from under my desk, despite it's size and weight. I'd urge you to have a look at it, or its successors.
The_Beast 6th June 2011, 01:59 Quote
I'm not sure if I like it. I loved the P180 but now there are so many cases that have the P180 fridge look that it would have to stand out someplace else for me to even consider buying this.
leslie 6th June 2011, 02:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenco_uk
This is the reason why I'm sticking to my Coolermaster Cosmos as it's so much easier to slide in and out from under my desk, despite it's size and weight. I'd urge you to have a look at it, or its successors.

Feet are easily changed.
slothy89 6th June 2011, 04:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
PS: I hope the orange stuff is just because it's prototype.
Sorry to disappoint, but those fans are real existing retail fans, colours and all:
http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=9_510&products_id=16642
delriogw 6th June 2011, 16:53 Quote
i have to say i'm failing to see how this is a successor to the p180, i had the p180 for 4 years and loved it.. and this seems to have done away with everything that made it notable in the first place.

the ultra clean lines have been replaced with bevelling and glowing things, it no longer has the 'wind tunnel' for the PSU unit, and no longer has the removable HDD bays.

it's good to see they've gotten rid of the slatted mini doors that covered the front fans as they just restriced airflow and even the case designer recommended they be removed, and i'm glad they've thought about access to the back of the CPU area, meaning easier cooler changing, but (and i know they can't stay the same for ever) i can't help but wonder why not just go with a dramatic change or keep the stuff they know was popular?

for me, there are other cases on the market that match the look and feel of the p180 much more than antec seem to have managed here
Kralnor 12th June 2011, 14:37 Quote
I still use the P180 for my main desktop and honestly I haven't been too happy with it. I thought the HDD trays were stupid and the horrible cabling made upgrading a chore. I even broke the pins of an HDD because the lower HDD cage got stuck and I had to apply too much force to pull it out. And let's not talk about the completely cramped lower chassis - why on earth is there a fan down there? The PSU cables can barely fit in.

It is very quiet and does provide great cooling, but working with it has been a bad experience.

I'm going to be making a new build soon and have my eyes on the Fractal Design Define R3.
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