Performance 1, 90 series
Note: this case is pretty much exactly the same as the P182B which I reviewed here, so excuse blatant copy and paste action.
To aide you in seeing how big the P190 box is, here is a little pic of it next to the P182 box. It’s massive, and weighs an absolute ton. The box is black with huge text saying P190 and Antec. As a result this case appears to have a massive ego with it.
Once out of the box, the case is large, but nothing to be blown away by. The weight however is ridiculous, thanks to the Japanese stainless steel, but most of this has gone into the two side panels and the twin power supplies at the bottom of the case. You get a box full of goodies, which include drive rails, cable ties, screws and fan brackets.
The front and the two side panels are made of the same stuff of the P182, which is noise absorbing thanks to the layers of plastic, metal and other trickery that Antec have invented. The left hand side panel has a massive grill on the side which allows air to get to the Big Boy 200mm fan behind. As with all the fans in this case, it’s a Tri-cool model meaning that you can choose between low, medium and high depending on how hot your computer is.
The front of the case is no different from the P182, and has the same number of 5.25” drive bays (four) and the two fan doors with removable and washable dust filters behind. And don’t forget the FDD bay squished between the two fan doors. The front IO ports are also the same, with two USB, a FireWire and audio in and out. To find the HDD LED, power and reset buttons, you’ll have to pop open the magnetically held door.
The top of the case is an improvement over the P182, as there are now two 140mm fans that extract air, rather than suck in. There is no spoiler that the P182 boosted (rightly or wrongly) and the fans now sit flush with the top panel.
The side panels look a lot different from the P182 which had an inset of ‘gun-metal’ coloured metal which looked sexy. This case however is just painted pressed metal which doesn’t have quite the same effect. It would have been nice to use the same design, as they have done with the front of this case. This is made worse by the 4 hexagonal screws in the corners of the side panel which are silver and obvious. The clean look of the P182 was what made it look good, this case looks mildly industrial and doesn’t have the same impact unfortunately.
Once the case is opened, you’ll find that the 200mm side fan has a removable, washable dust filter which stops the sucked in air spreading dust everywhere. This 200mm fan is powered by a molex as a normal fan header wouldn’t be sufficient to power this beast and would probably pull too much current and burn out the mobo header.
There are the same removable HDD bays and the top bay can fit a maximum of two HDD’s, while the lower bay can have a maximum of four drives. Both of the cages have the same vibration killing silicon grommets that the P182 had. In this case, the upper HDD cage has been given two other roles. The first is using the supplied clips to mount another 120mm fan, and the second is the included add-in card holder. The rather confusing information sheet regarding the installation of this holder only has diagrams which don’t really explain its usage. From what I can tell, it’s used to support your add-in card from the other side, so that it doesn’t sag. In the diagram there appears to be a graphics card used, but an 8800 Ultra is short by 3 inches. The diagram does show some kind of clip installed on the graphics card itself, which I’ve never seen before.