It would seem that many companies are trying to diversify towards computer cases lately. Most of them originally are manufacturers of power and cooling products, but there are companies that began as GPU and RAM manufacturers as well. However, marketing case products can be very tricky. Functionality and value might not as important as aesthetics, depending on who you talk to. Today we are going to have a look at a case from Phanteks, a Dutch company whose high performance cooling solutions quickly made them very popular.

The Phanteks Enthoo Pro

Phanteks made a successful entry into the case market with the Enthoo Primo that we reviewed a year and a half ago. The Enthoo Primo was an excellent high-end case, although it came with a very hefty price tag. After their first successful attempt the company released a few more designs aiming to move a greater number of customers. All of the cases share the same series name "Enthoo" - not an actual word or name in any language based on the Latin alphabet but actually half the pronunciation of the word "enthusiast" (en-thoo-zee-ast). Today we are going to have a thorough look at their currently most popular case, the Enthoo Pro. The Enthoo Pro is a case designed for maximum cooling and versatility but retails for $90 (solid side panel) / $100 (window side panel), less than half the retail price of the Primo.

11.2oz coke can for size comparison
 
Phanteks Enthoo Pro Specifications
Motherboard Size EATX, ATX, Micro-ATX, Mini-ITX, SSI EEB
Drive Bays External 3 x 5.25"
Internal 6 x 2.5"/3.5" (internal drive cages)
1 x 2.5" (SSD Bracket)
Cooling Front 1 x 200mm (included)
2 x 120mm/140mm (optional if stock fan is removed)
Rear 1 x 140/120mm (one 140mm included)
Top 3 x 140/120mm or 1 x 200mm (optional)
HDD 2 x 120mm (optional)
Bottom 1 x 140mm or 2 x 120mm (optional)
Radiator Support Front Up to 240mm
Rear 120mm/140mm
Top Up to 360mm/420mm
Side -
Bottom Up to 240mm/140mm
I/O Port 2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, 1x Headphone, 1x Mic
Power Supply Size ATX
Clearances HSF 193mm
PSU -
GPU 347mm (472mm if HDD cages are removed)
Dimensions 535 mm × 235 mm × 550 mm (H×W×D)
21.06 in × 9.25 in × 21.65 in (H×W×D)
Prominent Features - Extreme cooling capacity
- 2 included Phanteks’ premium fans
- The PWM hub makes it possible to control all the connected fans (also 3-pin fans) with PWM function through 1 PWM connector and create a better cable management.
- Extensive water cooling support. Provides up to 4 different installation areas for slim and thick radiators varying from single to triple (120mm and 140mm form factors). Clearance for push-pull fan configurations.
- Innovative liquid cooling mounting systems: radiator brackets for easy installation
- Closed HDD panel strengthens the chassis’ rigidity, even when both HDD cages are removed.
- Removable Drop-n-Lock SSD bracket that can be installed on 2 different locations. (1 bracket incl.)
- Removable dust filters for easy maintenance.
- Pre-installed cable management tools behind the motherboard tray that can be fastened and released.
- 2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, microphone, 3.5mm audio jack
Price $90 (solid side panel) / $100 (window side panel)
 

Packaging and bundle

The packaging of the Enthoo Pro is simple with just a basic schematic of the case printed on the brown cardboard box. Inside the box, a nylon bag and astonishingly thin polystyrene foam slabs provide protection. Although we believe the aesthetics of the packaging to be unimportant, the functionality is in contrast quite importiant. Unfortunately, the packaging is far too basic for a case of this size and weight. The sample for this review received significant damage on its way to us, as the thin foam slabs had crumpled and the case was literally floating inside the box. The purchaser should always check the condition of the case before accepting its delivery.

Phanteks did an excellent job with the bundle of the Enthoo Pro. It may not be overly rich but is very well presented, with the screws and mounting hardware in a compartmentalized box. There also is a plate for the mounting of cooling systems, a few cable ties, two cable straps of different length and a very good manual.

The Exterior of the Phanteks Enthoo Pro
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  • Haravikk - Wednesday, April 01, 2015 - link

    Agreed. This case is incredibly unremarkable, and until more towers start ditching the obstructive and largely redundant up-front drive bays, we're not going to get much progress in the tower market.

    I don't know any gamers who really need more than two drives, or for whom 2.5" drives aren't sufficient. 4x 2.5" drive bays can squeeze in almost anywhere in a properly designed case, and would still let you have a pair of mirrored SSDs and mirrored HDDs (or striped if you prefer) which is about the most I expect anyone to have these days.

    In terms of optical bays; so few people really use them anymore, meanwhile a slot-loading (or at least low profile) drive takes up hardly any space. The focus really does need to be on big fans up front with as little obstruction as possible.

    Some people might mention fan controls, but any good pro case could include one with a custom fitting. But again, most people don't (or shouldn't) need a fan control, as any good motherboard can drive more than enough fans, so at most you might need a splitter cable, especially since most fans these days are pretty energy efficient, especially larger ones that don't need to spin very fast anyway.

    So yeah, we're stuck with towers constantly being released with an obsolete internal design, and it's really hurting the market. Only smaller designs are really innovating at the moment, and even then some of them are making really weird decisions.
    Reply
  • NLD - Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - link

    You don't know because you don't know anyone... I'm a member of a gaming community and know over 50 in our community alone..... Reply
  • NLD - Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - link

    get a laptop. Reply
  • Dug - Monday, March 30, 2015 - link

    Define R5 lets you take all of them out giving you many options for radiators.
    NZXT S340 has no bays at all making the case fairly small for an ATX design.
    Reply
  • nmm - Monday, March 30, 2015 - link

    I would usually agree with you, but I tend to agree with some that the sentiment is more appropriate with compact cases. I just can't imagine there being a realistic need for a tower case with the entire front surface covered with radiators in addition to the top/bottom or whatever else. Just the same, I'd get more use out of a mini-fridge on the front of my case than 5¼" bays. That's because I'm not a person who has any need for a tower case, though. I'd rather build an efficient mini-ITX system than a 3 foot tall air circulator disguised as a computer. Reply
  • WithoutWeakness - Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - link

    I think you're on to something with the mini fridge. Most cases with doors only have them to cover the ugly 5.25" bays. If we pull the 5.25" bays and replace them with a mini fridge that can hold a couple of cans then the door would actually have some functional purpose instead of just being for aesthetics. Reply
  • continuum - Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - link

    Two went be plenty. Heck, lots of times, agreed that one would be enough, and zero is okay.

    Given it's an E-ATX case for $100 I don't mind seeing one or two (it's certainly big enough!) but yeah, three seems silly...
    Reply
  • DanNeely - Wednesday, April 01, 2015 - link

    Once you have a single 5.25 bay, you might as well have several, and a mess of 3.5" bays below, since you've stretched your case forward enough to accommodate them.

    The compact (front to back) single 5.25 bay case died when the market decided to move the PSU to the bottom and to use the top of the case for ventilation.
    Reply
  • NLD - Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - link

    5.25 bays are essential , Fan controllers, lighting controllers, Card drives, audio bays.... if you don't like them use the 100's of cases with no 5.25 bays.... I really think new cases need them, maybe more ascetics and innovation on how you can disguise or hide them is a good idea.

    Needless to say, fans of external Blu-ray players and DVD-HD writers etc... will not care but they are with good cases, 5.25 drive bays will live on.
    Reply
  • nos024 - Monday, March 30, 2015 - link

    I like my 5.25 bays...there has to be at least two. I am not ready to give up my ODD and swappable HDD bay. At least for large towers like this, I want to have 5.25 bays. I can see a mid tower case not having it. The point of a full tower case is that you can put ANYTHING you want in it.

    The problem with these large towers case is that the 8pin CPU power cord is barely long enough (and sometimes won't even reach). Given that the majority of PSUs are mounted at the bottom, I think it's time the PSU manufacture give you a longer cord...or the Motherboard manufacturers change it's location, or the case give you a better path. I see that this case has an opening at the top to route the cable to so it won't be a problem.
    Reply

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