Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review

April 19, 2017 // 4:15 p.m.

Tags: #antec #mini-itx

Interior

The Cube's side panels tug off easily with no need for any screws, which is always nice. After this, you can unclip the front panel from inside, and it comes away clean without trying to drag any I/O port or button cables with it. Magnets are what hold the front dust filter in place, so again this is really easy to work with.

Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior
Click to enlarge

Inside we find an inverted tower layout and a built-in, matt black PSU cover. The internals are hewn from steel, but it feels of higher quality than usual and has a pleasant finish too. We also see the EKWB logo printed here – the first real sign of the company's involvement in the chassis.

Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior
Click to enlarge

Hardware installation is straightforward at every point thanks to you having ample space to work with and lots of clearance for components – practically any high-end build should fit without issue. Pre-installed motherboard standoffs also help you out, and we like that the PSU sits on top of some thick rubber feet. Having all the internal cables sleeved in black is likewise sensible given the number of windows the Cube has.

Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior
Click to enlarge

All internal drives are relegated to being installed out of the way behind the motherboard tray. High quality, removable, steel mounting trays are used for this – you have two smaller ones dedicated to SSDs/2.5” drives and one larger one that can support either a single 3.5” drive or another pair of 2.5” drives. Coupled with the one or even two M.2 ports that mini-ITX motherboard come with these days, that's plenty of storage potential.

Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior
Click to enlarge

Also behind the motherboard tray is a six-port fan hub. This accepts power through a SATA power connection and can then be used to switch up to six fans through four different settings: off, slow, medium, and full speed. The rear exhaust fan does not come pre-connected, but it's not exactly difficult to do this yourself. As this is an LED fan, the LEDs get brighter or dimmer depending on the selected speed setting.

Cable routing in the Cube is decent but not outstanding. Positives include routing holes that are large and thoughtfully positioned as well as lots of room behind the motherboard tray and in front of the PSU. However, Antec could certainly do more to help you hide the cables away. Grommets on the routing holes would be a start, and it would also be nice if the PSU cover extended all the way to the front (perhaps with a removable section in order to maintain front radiator support) as a better means of hiding cables in the lower cavity. We've also become accustomed to Velcro cable ties in high-end cases, so their absence here is noticeable.

Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review Antec Cube EKWB Edition Review - Interior
Click to enlarge

With EKWB certification, we were expecting a lot in terms of custom water-cooling support, but the Cube isn't really anything special here. Single radiators can be fitted in place of the rear fan, of course, but for anything larger your only option is the front, where 240mm radiators can be installed. The cutaway PSU cover at least means that very thick setups are supported, but there's no nod given to reservoir or pump support – you'll probably have to get creative to install these properly. For many water-coolers, this is just a given, but again this is a case certified by a water-cooling manufacturer. Unfortunately, this doesn't appear to mean all that much.
Discuss this in the forums

QUICK COMMENT

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER

WEEK IN REVIEW

TOP STORIES

SUGGESTED FOR YOU