Fractal Design R4 Black Pearl review -
When we flip around the unit we can see the side panel a little better. Very simple with a mesh where you can install an additional fan. Right now there is sound dampening material there though, but you could move that out quite easily as these fan mount pads are removable.
There are a total of 7 fan positions (1x 120mm + 1x 140mm in front, 2x 120/140mm in top, 1x 120mm in bottom, 1x 120mm in rear, 1x 120/140mm in side panel). Two fans have been pre-installed, these are hydraulic bearing 140mm Silent Series R2 fan, 1000 RPM speed (included). As you can see the front bezel panel door also has sound dampening materials.
After you open up the front door at the top next to the 5.25" drive bays you'll notice a small switch, this is the three-speed fan controller and supports up to 3 fans. This is as simple as a fan controller can be really, but hey it works and realistically, how often do you change a fan RPM setting ?
The panel can be removed be removing two thumbnails at the back and then pull it towards you, it is the old traditional way of chassis panel removal. The size of the chassis by the way is is chassis is (WxHxD): 232 x 464 x 523mm with a Net weight of 12,3 kg, making it a rather heavy chassis.
Have a look at that thick sound-absorbing material optional one could mount and extra fan here as well as that 120/140mm sound dampening pad is secured with four screws.
The backside then. Next to the rear IO we spot a 140mm fan. All fans in this chassis can be PWM fan controlled as the Define R4 has that little fan controller delivered with it, so you can go really silent, normal or choose for maximum performance at the cost of noise. The chassis has 7+1 card slots. The vertical slot could be used for some extra USB connectors or something to that extend.
The matte black paint job is terrific a little sensitive to scratches though. But again, style wise you hardly can beat this chassis. Fractal Design offers the chassis in three color themes: Black Pearl, Titanium Grey, Arctic White.
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