Antec Three Hundred Budget Gaming Case

Article Index

System Build and Conclusion

 

After working with the Nine Hundred last year, we expected that things would go rather smoothly as the construction of the Three Hundred is somewhat similar.  The oversized thumbscrews and pull tab handles allow quick access to the interior and every edge has been either rounded or folded inward making it safe for DIY builder's - no cut hands or forearms here.  Getting our Vantec Stealth PSU installed was a bit tricky, however, as it didn't settle in easily within the brackets.  Even after getting the placement correct, we found that the power plug didn't match up nicely with the cutout.  It was liveable for the time-being, and we did not encounter the same issue with two other units from Antec: a Neo 480 and a Trio 650.

System Installation Notes
Putting the pieces together

Unlike the hassle we ran into last year, there are no removable drive cages with hard-to-reach screw holes on the Three Hundred.  To install our drives, we had to remove the front bezel by releasing three clips along the front corner and swinging the bezel to the right.  Optical drive installing is easy enough as they slide directly in and get screwed directly to the cage on either side.  Hard drives, of which the Three Hundred seats up to six, require that an outer cage be unlatched first before installing the drives.  This outer cage is, of course, where the optional 120mm fans are installed.

The long front panel audio and USB cables should provide enough length to reach the far side of most motherboards where these pins are typically found.  We were able to get ours installed with just enough extra slack to run them alongside the edge of the board and out of the way of the drives and other components.  Ditto with the power cables from the PSU.  We were able to run cables around or under the back of the board to keep cable clutter to a minimum.  The space above the board remains almost entirely open, and with the ample exchange of airflow should allow for proper cooling of all components.



The Final Build

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Antec's Three Hundred isn't on the same level as the Nine Hundred, but it fits the bill as a budget gaming case quite well.  Sure, it's boxy and doesn't truly stand out aesthetically, but it has what really counts - ample fan mounts, an open-air design, and large, speed-adjustable fans to keep airflow moving about the PC.   It's also a good thing to see a company consider the feedback from reviewers and rethink their process.  Many complaints were made regarding the dust buildup within the Nine Hundred, and now we've got filters on both of their new models.  There was also some frustration noted with the installation of hard drives and that has been alleviated as well. 

That's not to say that we don't have a few gripes about the Three Hundred.  We'd like to see some kind of improvement with the hard drive bays, whether that be in the way of a toolless installation method, or perhaps rubber grommets to reduce noise chatter, especially with the thought of having up to six drives running in a single machine.  We also still harbor some concerns about the openness of the upper mounted fan, as the openings in the fan grate are large enough to allow small objects to fall through and contact components directly beneath.  Even with the minor faults, and the lack of additional components necessary to keep prices low (about $60-70), we still recommend the Three Hundred for those looking for an affordable, no-nonsense alternative to some of higher-priced PC cases out there.



  • Similar to Nine Hundred design but at half the price
  • Open front bezel for increased airtake
  • Lower PSU mount
  • Washable air filters for front bezel
  • Easily accessbile interior of chassis and front bezel
  • Only ships with two of the possible five fans
  • Lacks some of the stand-put features of the Nine Hundred
  • Would like to have the 3.5"-5.25" conversion kit come standard
  • Basic drive installation and no sound-dampening

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