Fractal Design Arc Midi Black Case ReviewTue, Dec 27, 2011 - 12:00 AM
Final Thoughts and Conclusion
As mentioned, I am big fan of a lot of things Swedish that have come out over the last few years. Now, is this case the “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” of Mid-tower cases? I would not go as far as to say that, but it is a nice case that is available for $99.99 plus shipping at Newegg.
The Arc Midi easily does its job. It also is very much a good value of features in a minimalistic look of a mid-tower case. I do like how the case is aesthetically clean from the outside. This continued inside by just looking out how the internal wiring was routed through the case. The case had more than enough accessories that came in the accessory box. I like how the fan controller was a separate component that could be installed as well as how it has a screw driver in the box. I love how the internal components were painted white to create a nice contrast to the black chassis. I am a huge fan of the eight white metal drive caddies that support SSD if needed. The 90 degree rotating and removable cage is also a nice feature for longer video cards that I am sure most PC enthusiasts will take advantage of. Of course, USB 3.0 is also included and can link directly up to the motherboard. I also like the removable filter that goes below the power supply. Finally, the fact that it came pre loaded with three case fans can get you started without worrying about extra cooling unless you are looking to over clock immediately. Overall, I would certainly use this case — not only for a gaming case, but it could work in a corporate environment.
The Less Favorable Parts
There are very few things that I dislike about the Arc Midi. I am a fan of the faux brushed metal look. My laptop happens to be brushed metal. The picture of the case on the box looks fine as a bushed metal look. What a builder should know beforehand is that this is faux brushed metal. It is plastic and designed to look like brushed metal. Although I like the look of the case but I have a hard time describing it as brushed metal. To me it almost looks like black lacquer wood grain. I would have liked to have seen real brushed metal or plating on the front panel. But that is just my opinion. On the inside the only issues I had was with the controls for the fans. Once installed, when I connected the Molex power connector the pins bent. This certainly could be user error and not a manufacturer issue. I would advise a builder to be careful when connecting the Molex connectors to this piece.
I recently did a review on the Corsair Carbide 400R. These two cases are similar in style and function for around the $100 range for mid-tower cases. I have done a couple of Corsair case reviews and know what to expect. In regards to Fractal Design this is my first review of them and I am very happy with the end results. Much like the Corsair I feel the components are solid and are not going to break down as soon as the case is used. So, is this case the work of art that is the story of Lisbeth in “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”? Not quite, but it is still a solid entry into the mid-tower case field. I believe Fractal Design is well on its way to making a great foothold of quality in computer components.
Legit Bottom Line: Fractal Design has a winning chassis with the Arc Midi Computer Case. The Swedish company produces a quality product in the grand fashion of many things Swede today.