NZXT FX120, FX140, & FS200-R Case Fan ReviewsThu, Sep 22, 2011 - 12:00 AM
Final Thoughts & Conclusions
On the bright side, the FX-140LB is fast and it is powerful. It has more than enough airflow and static pressure to handle just about any cooling solution you put it on. Combine that with the fact that it has a standard 140mm housing instead of any custom work, and you have a solution that’s brilliant for most users.
On the down side, these fans are noisy. The FX-140LB’s are spec’d to give off 37dB(A) of noise, which is louder than most home appliances like a coffee pot or running refrigerator. Truth be told, though, these fans also produce an awful lot of bearing noise when you compare them against the FN or FS Series of fans from NZXT which actually comes as a surprise.
The FX-140LB’s definitely have potential as fans, with plenty of options and almost no limitations; I wouldn’t be hard pressed to recommend them. Likewise, the FX-140LB’s come with a very complete accessories package & a 2 year warranty, which makes them more attractive at $16.99 + Shipping, but be warned, these are for your extreme guys as the pure noise level is high on this particular model.
When you look at the positive notes of this fan, you’ll easily see that it set out to do one mission, and that’s push more air then most other 25mm thick fans on the market while staying reasonably priced. Truth be told, NZXT’s FX-120LB did its job with flying colors. Airflow was matching its 140mm brother, as well as its sound profile, while surpassing it in static pressure due to the small frame design.
Things are not always so great, though, like its brother the FX-140LB; this model also suffers from loud bearing noise in its sound profile, even though it’s a Fluid Dynamic Bearing. This is usually the cause of the fan itself being pushed to its maximum output, and a larger impeller being needed to handle speeds so great. Considering it runs at 2600 RPM at full speed, this is a fair observation.
With all of that said, the FX-120LB does do its job well, as it’s not advertised as a quiet or silent cooling fan; it’s an enthusiast grade product meant to do enthusiast grade missions. At $14.99 + Shipping, I can’t say that this fan is a bad value, nor would I advise against it. I would suggest NZXT goes back to Dynatron and have them do a few design tweaks to the FX Series of fans and have them fine tuned to be only the sound of airflow.
The FS-200RB-RLED is meant to be a silent fan, and even at full operation it was able to push massive amounts of air while making little to no noise at all. Combine that with its huge impeller and its solid LED lighting, you’ve got one nice fan on your hands. The sound profile of this fan was very smooth in regards to most 200mm fans I’ve had across my bench or in my hands. Very little motor noise is present and most of the time you hear nothing but the rush of air through this guy. Even then, this really is a silent fan, as that makes very little noise.
Currently, the FS-200RB-RLED comes in at $15.00 plus $2.99 shipping. The Blue LED model is $29.99 w/ free shipping and the Green LED Model is $22.99 w/ free shipping. With an average price around $23.66 Shipped; you’re not looking at a cheap fan here. In fact, this is in your higher price brackets as far as fans are concerned. Though; NZXT’s offering is not far off the base mark, as most 200mm+ fans come in at $18-25. I can definitely say NZXT did a good job with this design, even though I may question the need to go custom on the housing. Their fan does perform well, and it does so quietly. That combination is hard to find in many of these larger diameter fans due to poor impeller designs.
Legit Bottom Line: NZXT’s new FX Enthusiast & FS Silent Fan Series definitely deliver on their promises, but still hold some minor design flaws. These are still all quality fans that are easily worth a consideration if they suit your needs.