Legit Case Reviews
Antec Sonata II ATX Case Review
|Product:||Antec SONATA II Piano Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Case|
|Date:||Mon, Jul 11, 2005 - 12:00 AM|
|Written By:||Rich Caporali|
The Power Supply
Antec's SmartPower 2.0 450W PSU
ATX12V version 2.0 Compliance
Dual 12V output circuitry provides added system stability and meets 240VA UL requirements and safety purpose: 12V1 for Motherboard and peripherals; 12V2 for processor
ATX12V v2.0 compliance allows SmartPower 2.0 to consume up to 25% less power than standard power supplies, saving you money on your electric bill. 24-pin power connector with detachable 4-pin section for backwards compatibility with ATX 20-pin motherboards.
4 SATA Connectors support Serial ATA optical drives
Flow-through dual 80mm fans (one intake and one exhaust)
Unique Dual Fans Technology: exhaust fan starts to spin when the power supply reaches certain temperatures to ensure proper airflow, the second fan spins on power up
Industrial grade protection prevents damage resulting from short circuits, power overloads, excessive current, low voltages and excessive voltages
Increased 12V output capability for system components that consume more power from 12V rail
PCI-E graphic connector
Safety approvals: UL, CUL, TUV, CB, FCC Class B, CE, CCC
Increased MTBF: 80,000 hours
Size: 6.1"(L) x 5.9" (D) x 3.4" (H)
Gold plated connector for superior conductivity
The biggest difference between the original Sonata and the Sonata II is the power supply that the case comes with. The Sonata came with a 380W power supply that offered 35A on the 5-volt rail and 18A on the 12-volt rail. The 450W power supply that comes with the Sonata II has 30A on the5-volt rail and an 32A when adding up the two independent 12-volt rails. These should be ample to power many of the current high end dual core processors that are coming out on the market today and is far better than the original Antec Sonata power supply.
The fact that Antec includes a high quality PSU with their enclosuers only makes them even more of a steal. The Sonata II includes a 450W SmatPower 2.0 power supply. With systems becoming more and more power hungry, 450W is adequate for most, and considering the ~$115 price tag of the Sonata II, the SmartPower 2.0 makes this enclosure a steal.
While I won't get into the Technical Data, I have found this power supply to work just fine during case testing. Antec PSU's have always featured rock solid rails and plenty of connectors for whatever I decided to install in my system. The 450W PSU included with my review sample had 4 SATA connections, as well as a PCI-E connection. Two features i really appreciate are the fan management system, which spins one fan up at startup, and the second only when the PSU needs it, and the Smartpower 2.0's backwards compatibility with 20 pin power connector motherboards by way of a detachable section of the power connector, meaning you don't have to buy a special adapter if you plan on using this enclosure or PSU with an older system.
A couple of things I'd like to see is a second PCI-E connector (for SLI systems) and a much better cable management system. My PSU's wiring was a mess as the wires left the housing, and the wires themselves were only managed by a handful of zip ties. I'd happily pay a little extra for a much cleaner wiring job and some sleeves over each wire.
That being said, the SmartPower 2.0 is about the same as every other Antec PSU I have used, a very good power supply. The complaints I had aren't deal breakers, and simply add a little work to a system setup for the end user.
Next Page - Final Thoughts
Page 1 - Making The Original Antec Sonata Better
Page 2 - External Impression
Page 3 - Internal Impression
Page 4 - The Power Supply
Page 5 - Final Thoughts