In and Around the NZXT H630

The exterior of the NZXT H630 is a wonderfully simple, beautiful thing. They asked me if I wanted a black model or the two-toned white and black version; I think the white and black is beautiful, but at the end of the day, black goes with everything. Where I suspect users may take some issue with the H630 is in its use of a predominately plastic shell, but the plastic actually makes sense for the design from at least a practical perspective. Keep in mind that the chassis itself is built of sturdy steel (essential for producing a vibration-free and silent enclosure). My mistake, the outer shell is also steel.

Gallery: NZXT H630

As I mentioned in the introduction, NZXT eschews using a door for the H630; instead there are just two 5.25" bays on the front of the case, with the NZXT logo at the bottom and a dim white activity LED at the top right. The unusual contour at the top of the front fascia blends with the contour on the top of the case itself, creating a beautiful accent. Unfortunately, I feel like NZXT didn't quite capitalize on the opportunity to add a little bit of discreet ventilation here. On top of the case is the power button and a recessed reset button, and the ring around the power button glows a soft white when the system is powered on.

If you take a tour around the case you're going to see a lot of flat surfaces, but the way the case is vented is slightly unusual. The right side of the case sports the switch to toggle the I/O lighting along with the audio jacks, USB ports, and the integrated SD card reader. Beneath this cluster is a patch of fairly inconspicuous ventilation, but that ventilation is not mirrored on the opposite side. That's a tough judgment call to make; I understand why the opposite side isn't vented, but I do think it would've been a reasonable sacrifice to make for potentially superior airflow. Around the top rim of the H630 is more similarly discreet ventilation. Note that like the chimney on the Nanoxia Deep Silence 1, this ventilation does not correspond to headroom for fans or radiators.

The two side panels are held in place by thumbscrews, and mercy of mercies, they're hinged. The top and front panels are also designed to pop off, but on my pre-production review unit, the front panel is borderline impossible to remove. This is a recognized flaw in the review batch of cases and it's my understanding that it will be corrected in retail. I personally find the choice of dampening material particularly interesting; NZXT opted for 7mm thick sheets of closed cell foam on the insides of the side panels along with the interior of the top panel.

When you do reach the H630's interior, it's pretty traditional NZXT. There's a slight incline surrounding the motherboard tray to aid in cable routing, but I was disappointed to see the modular drive cage design doesn't inherit the brilliance of the Phantom 630's 1-2-3 stacking. Instead there's a 3-2-3 combination. Note that there are also two 2.5" trays docked behind the motherboard tray; this area gets toasty, but it's totally reasonable for SSDs and is a great way to free up space in the interior proper.

While I'm fond of the H630's design overall, and I believe the plastic shell was actually a smart design choice given the case is still 30 pounds, the interior isn't quite as progressive as the Phantom 630's was. I get the sense that NZXT definitely still has room for improvement here. Externally, though, I think it's absolutely stunning and breathes new life into the "black monolith" case aesthetic. That, and while I've never been a big fan of the "stormtrooper" look of NZXT's Phantom cases, the H630 is stunningly and wonderfully tasteful and sleek.

Introducing the NZXT H630 Assembling the NZXT H630
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  • Blibbax - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    How is it louder at load stock than it is overclocked? Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    Margin of error. Reply
  • hero1 - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    This is the case for me even though I already own the FDD XL R2 atm. I had posted on another site months ago asking for this exact type of case 3x120 front and top and 2x140 at the bottom, fewer front bays and sound dumping materials. Looks like NZXT listened and delivered. The acoustics are not a problem considering that I, and many others, will buy this case for water cooling builds. One thing I wish they did is have perforations on both sides of the door and get air from both directions. Reply
  • Trefugl - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    I'm also interested in this case for use with watercooling. I was having a hard time trying to figure out how much room there is for a 3x120 on the front though... Can anyone comment on radiator mounting in this case? Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    You can pull the drive cages and mounts entirely to install a 3x120. Reply
  • hero1 - Thursday, May 16, 2013 - link

    And that's what I intend to do with it. I wonder when we are going to see this beast in stock. Reply
  • hero1 - Thursday, May 16, 2013 - link

    One thing I don't like about the FDD XL R2 is the thin sound deadening materials. I want something like 5mm thick. That way I can use a 5mm thick acrylic panel for a window mod. I hope they have thicker materials for this one! Reply
  • JDG1980 - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    The Nanoxia DS1 would be a stronger competitor to the H630 if you could, you know, actually buy one.

    I understand that Anandtech can't test cases in every possible configuration, but I think results might have been better if the top drive cage had been removed (as was done on the Fractal Design Define R4 review), and the 200mm front fan moved from the bottom mount to the top. This would enable the intake airflow to cover a large portion of the motherboard, including the graphics card (if installed). In the configuration you use, the airflow mostly blows at the back end of the PSU. I have no idea why NZXT put the fan in the bottom mount by default; it doesn't make much sense to me.

    I'd love to see how this does with the top drive cage removed and a Silverstone 180mm Air Penetrator in the top mount. (You might need zip-ties or extra holes drilled for this one, though.) The AP182 has its own analog fan controller, which would also help with noise.
    Reply
  • Subyman - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    Did anyone else think the top of the front panel looked like a giant hinge for a door? I was surprised when the author noted that it did not have a door. I thought those two openings on the front folded down when the optical drive came out. I really like my 550D, door and all ;) Reply
  • angryblanket - Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - link

    Very subtle and not flashy, just how I like em. Out of my price point though. Reply

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