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Antec Sonata III review

A case that gives you a good head start

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Our Verdict

A couple of small irritations can't hide the fact that this is a good all-round case

For

  • Great power supply

Against

  • Awkward to work inside

If you're setting up a new-build PC then the Sonata III is a good investment. It's got a 500W PSU pre-installed in the case, which comes with the requisite dual 6-pin PCI-E plugs needed if you're looking at fitting a whopper like the 8800GTX, or an SLI or Crossfire system.

The PSU is also certified by independent assessors (www.80plus.org), which ensures that at power loads between 20% and 100%, it operates at 80% or better efficiency. That's way better than the nasty 'grey box' PSUs which normally comes pre-bundled with a chassis. But then, this is Antec we're talking about, a firm renowned for producing great power supplies.

The chassis is well-appointed with screwless drive-bays and the requisite sound-dampening grommets to ensure the Sonata's quiet credentials are upheld. There's also a 120mm fan with three speed settings at the rear, with space for one at the front by the HD bays.

Unfortunately it's as awkward as a pensioner in a supermarket to get a screwdriver in to fix it in place. It's just as tough getting the HD caddies out as the bays are set too close to the front edge to gain easy purchase on the release catches.

Aside from these niggles, it's an attractive, well designed case, and you get a decent PSU for your money too. It's certainly worth a look unless you're the sort to be regularly fiddling around inside your case. Like us.