Tower Cases: Antec Performance One P183

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antec_p183_quarterThe Performance One range of Antec cases is widely recognised as a collection of some of the best tower cases available for system builders, providing excellent noise reduction systems, quality system build and excellent optimised airflow for cooling components.  We have previously reviewed the P190 + 1200W and the Mini P190, both of which we thought were excellent designed, and we were very pleased to be offered the chance to review the new P183 the successor to the excellent P180 range.

The P183 has dimensions of 51.4 cm (Height) x 20.5 cm (Width) x 50.7 cm (Depth) and is very similar externally to the original P180 except for a change in the fan vents on the top surface on the case.  With the P183, the original top fan vent that sat above the top of the case has been lost in favour of a simple perforated design that is flush with the top surface.  In addition, the front door has been modified to include more air vents and also wider vents have been incorporated along the sides of the doorframe to provide improved airflow.  The door itself opens up to 270 degrees for full access to any installed drives.  In order to access the case, Antec have used thumbscrews for quick and easy access.

The side panels themselves are very well made with a triple layer design.  Each panel comprises a layer of plastic sandwiched between two aluminium panels that helps insulate the system and prevent excessive acoustical noise.  The chassis is manufactured from 0.8mm cold rolled steel that provides a very robust structure.

antec_p183_openInside the case there is the same dual chamber design, with the PSU located in the lower chamber and the mainboard and other components located in the larger upper chamber, helping to reduce system noise and heat.  In contract with the P180 and P182, the lower chamber fan has been moved so that is located in front of the lower hard drive chamber.  This in turn allows the installation of larger PSUs and the upcoming range of Antec CP Series power supplies.

The case provides space for 11 drive bays (Four external 5.25" drives and one 3.5" drive as well as six internal 3.5" bays within the two hard drive chambers) and can house motherboards up to standard ATX form factor with room for seven expansion cards.  5.25" drives are simply installed by screwing rails to their sides and sliding, and clicking, them into place, whereas 3.5" hard drives are screwed into their chosen hard drive tray, which in turn are held in place with a thumbscrew for easy maintenance. Housed underneath the motherboard tray is also a basic cable management system with room to route all cables and therefore reduce clutter in the main body of the case.

The all important cooling system comprises one rear 120mm x 25mm TriCool™ fan and one top 120mm x 25mm TriCool™ fan with the option to install three further fans (upper and lower front chamber and one middle chamber (120mm fans)).  The two front fan mounting points are hidden behind filter doors with integrated filters and the doors themselves have been modified to provide greater airflow into the chassis.

antec_p183_frontAs with other Antec cases there are two USB 2.0 ports, one eSATA, audio in and out (HDA and AC'97 compatible) ports as well as the power button conveniently mounted on the front of the case.

The P183 provides is an excellent option for those users wanting a quiet computing experience, with everything designed to reduce vibrational and acoustic noise.  Although the P183 only utilises two Tri-Cool fans as standard, previous tests we have conducted with the Antec dual chamber design has educated us as to how efficient this design is at maintaining a cool PC.  The overall finish of the case is fantastic, with no sharp edges, and installation of components is very simple with no real experience of system builds needed.   It even comes with Antec's three year warranty (AQ3) for peace of mind, however, from our observations and previous experience, the case will surely last far longer than that.  In our mind the P183 is certainly worth every penny.

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Amazon: Antec Performance One P183 - Mid tower - ATX - no power supply - black - USB/Audio/E-SATA