ReviewsReview of the Fractal Design Array R2 Mini-ITX Case

Review of the Fractal Design Array R2 Mini-ITX Case


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Back in January at CES, I met up with Fractal Design to talk about some of the cases, including the Array R2 Mini-ITX case. Well now it is time for our review of it.

UWHS Review - Fractal Design Array R2 Mini-ITX Case

The Array R2 Case

Here is how Fractal Design describe the Array R2:

The Array R2 Mini ITX NAS case is setting new standards for the Home Server/DIY NAS market. With it’s whopping six(!) hard drive bays in a very small enclosure, hardly bigger than your average bread toaster, it’s certainly creating a new niche.

Built in high quality aluminium straight through with a nice touch for details, the Array R2 case provides a very exclusive way to store all your important data. The hard drive cage with room for six 3,5-inch HDD and one SSD, is removable and fitted with silicone anti-vibration grommets to minimise noise from the hard drives. In the front our award winning Silent Series 140mm is fitted, together with a washable filter. It takes in air from the side ventilation holes in the front panel. This ensures an efficient, but yet silent, cooling over the hard drives.

Furthermore, there is a SFX 300W PSU included, rated at more than 80% efficiency, with a silent temperature controlled fan. We have decided to include this PSU in the package, since it’s fairly hard to find quality SFX PSU’s in the market that is also silent, and not too expensive.

You can fit a Mini ITX or a Mini DTX motherboard into the case and there’s also room for two expansion cards, for example a RAID card which you’d typically want to get the most out of your six hard drives. All necessary components and software naturally needs to be purchased separately, but we can recommend to use specialised NAS/Home Server software such as FreeNAS or Windows Home Server. Please note that there is no room for a 5,25-inch drive, we deliberately left this out since you don’t generally use that in a NAS/Home Server environment, and it saved us a lot of space which we could use for fitting hard drives instead.

Who Are Fractal Design?

This is how Fractal Design describe themselves:

The concept – Design

The concept of Fractal Design is to provide products with an extraordinary design level, without compromising the important factors of quality, functionality and pricing. The computer of today has come to play a central role in most people’s home, creating a demand for appealing design of the computer itself and its accessories.
Our main product areas are computer enclosures, power supplies, cooling, and Media Center-products, such as Home Theatre-enclosures, keyboards and remote controls.

Designed and engineered in Sweden

All Fractal Design products have been thoroughly designed, tested and specified in our Swedish head quarter. The well known ideas of Scandinavian design can be found through all of our products; a minimalistic but yet striking design – less is more.

Visions and goals

Our vision is to have a constant, healthy growth together with our partners worldwide. Our goal is to be widely recognized for our designed products and to have them available in all major market regions within EU and US. We should be a good alternative to the already established retail brands of today. It’s of great importance for us that our partners understand the values of Fractal Design, therefore we are putting great effort into choosing the right partners from the start. We will work actively to maintain sales territories and profitable business for our partners.

The way to reach our goals

In the competitive market of today, it’s not enough to just provide excellent products. Regular and well planned marketing activities in close cooperation with the channel and the available media, are key points to succeed. We are well experienced in marketing brands in the IT business, and we will use this to create efficient marketing tools – to gain a bigger market share and good earning possibilities for our channel.


Case Specifications
  • Built in high quality aluminium
  • Silent, efficient 300W SFX PSU included
  • Room for six silicone mounted 3,5-inch HDD
  • Room for one SSD
  • Removable HDD cage for easy mounting
  • Silent Series 140mm fan included in front, with washable filter
  • Space available for CPU cooler: circa 90mm height
  • Space available for expansion card: circa 140mm length
  • Fits Mini ITX and Mini DTX motherboards
  • Two expansion slots
  • Case dimensions (WxHxD): 250x200x350mm
  • Net weight: 4.1kg
PSU Specifications
  • 80 PLUS rated SFX 300W PSU
  • Silent, temperature controlled fan
  • 7x SATA-connectors, 1x Molex, 1x 4-pin and 1x 20/24pin
  • Meets CE, TUV safety requirementsDC Output
    Max load
    Max output+3.3V
    125W (combined +3.3V and +5V) 

    125W (combined +3.3V and +5V)

    216W combined 12V1 and 12V2

    216W combined 12V1 and 12V2



    Total combined power

Andrew Edney
I am the owner and editor of this site. I have been interested in gadgets and tech since I was a little kid. I have also written a number of books on various tech subjects. I also blog for The Huffington Post and for FHM. And I am honoured to be a Microsoft MVP since January 2008 - again this year as an Xbox MVP.


  1. Very nice case indeed. I build a server for a client using the Lian-Li PC-Q08 case, that one gives you the DVD drive and can hold 6 HDD.

    This case shares a lot of simularities. If I were choosing a 6 drive case without a DVD bay, I would choose this one. I like the internal power supply, Lian-Li cases support the larger power supplies and I find that excessive in the smaller case.

    Room for a DTX motherboard is a nice touch. Even if you use a M-ITX motherboard, you can still use the extra rear slot to add a backplate with some USB slots.

    I like that the front is clean and without USB or audio inputs. If this box is on display in your AV system, it’s not pretty having stuff hang off the front.

    Also it looks like this case can handle a i3/i5 motherboard, some case can only accomadate Atom boards.

  2. If you get a chance Andrew can you post some side by side photo’s with the HP Microserver & your Tranquil SQA-5H ? I would like to see how they differ.

  3. I have been looking closely at this case for a project later this year. Unfortunately, it falls into the category of ‘good but could do better’.

    I picked up on the lack of front USB ports, but would also have liked to see a fitting for a slimline DVD drive, directly in front of the motherboard, underneath the drive cage.

    But it’s the drive cage where I think immediate improvements are needed: a lay-flat handle to facilitate placement and removal, and something to keep the cables tidy at the back – a backplane would be the best solution, of course.

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