Fractal Design Node 605 HTPC Chassis Review

/ 4 years ago

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This week I’ve been able to spend time with the Node 605 HTPC chassis from Swedish manufacturer Fractal Design. We’ve had a few Fractal Design chassis in for review over the last couple of months, such as the Define R4 and the Node 304 M-ITX chassis, both of which are some of the best in class chassis for their respective sizes and earned our eTeknix Editors Choice Awards.

Fractal Design are well known for their slick styling, solid build quality and premium performance and I no doubt that the Node 605 will offer anything less. The chassis is priced at around £110, which isn’t cheap but it is in line with the competition for similar chassis solutions. Fractal aren’t known for their cheap prices but as we’ve seen in the Node 304 and the Define R4 you get great value for money in terms of the three big aspects of style, quality and performance.

“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.” –

There are plenty of choices when it comes to HTPC chassis design, with several manufacturers giving you tidy solutions that will allow you to fit a full PC system into your home entertainment system. Lets start with a quick look at the specification of the Node 605 then well move and and see just what it has to offer.

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  • Martin P

    So if you can only have a slimline ODD with an ITX build and there’s no 5 1/4 bay, this means the only way to install a BluRay drive is with an ITX board. Don’t get me wrong, I like Fractal Design but I think there’s a serious flaw here. The point of a media centre is that it’s a centre for all media. With no option for an optical drive with larger motherboards you become somwhat limited on it’s use.
    How about using it a a media server? Well, no, not really. A limit of 4 drives reduces it’s usefulness, plus you don’t need a full ATX motherboard for a media server, M-ATX or ITX would do just as well.
    It’s a good looking case and no doubt it’s quiet and easy to build but I have to question it’s usefulness for it’s target audience.

    • Sicofante

      ATX boards are VERY GOOD for media centers that will be used to receive satellite and terrestrial TV signals and will also be used for gaming and bluray (after all, the goal is to have everything in a single box, that’s the job of the word “center” in “media center”). You’ll see your PCIe and PCI slots rapidly taken once you add a few tuners and a serious audio card. So this case is an awful design IMO. If you plan on using an m-ITX motherboard, you have plenty of options out there that are much better than this case. If you want ordinary ATX, you’re better off with solutions from Antec, for instance.

      Really bad design IMO. Good looks, terrible functionality.

  • I Also wonder how Fractal Design became well known for their slick styling, when the styling of every one I’ve seen seems to be that of a featureless black box.

    • Minimalist

      It’s called minimalism. They’re known for it because it’s a rare quality given the obnoxious aesthetics that typify PC cases.

  • observist

    Hey look! It’s a Lian Li PC-C60 without all the annoying 3.5″ and 5.25″ drive capacity and ATX/GPU/ODD configuration options! Thumbs up!

  • Nils-H

    I believe you can have a micro-ATX motherboard and still be able to fit an optimal drive.

    • Nils-H

      optical drive, thank you for correctly me iPhone…

  • LookingForaCase

    This is great, except for trying to find a slim blu ray drive, and using said slim blu ray drive. Someone will break that flimsy thing in a home environment. Would have been nice to allow a normal drive that has its door and button integrated with the case, or a slot load as on some other nice cases.

  • No IR window makes this a no-go. It makes no sense to have this beautiful clean case and then have to plop an external IR receiver on top of it or leave the flip-down door open to install a IR dongle. I also don’t understand the decsion to leave off a 5.25″ drive bay. The Lian-Li PC-C50B comes closer to what I am looking for but it too has no IR window. The search continues…