Page 1: Fractal Design Torrent Compact and Torrent Nano put to the test: The Airflow Dwarf Rebellion
Fractal Design builds an entire series with high airflow. For the two new models Torrent Compact and Torrent Nano also promise uncompromising cooling, but are space-saving alternatives to the complete Torrent. We tested the two Airflow dwarfs in doubles and can therefore well compare them with each other.
Hardly any Fractal Design case has strayed as far from the original corporate roots as the torrent. While the Define series in particular was known for Scandinavian understatement – both acoustically and visually – Torrent is the direct alternative. Its grooved airflow front is anything but subtle, but it makes work easier for the two large 180mm front fans. And there was even an RGB variant on the market.
They are now available again from Torrent Compact and Torrent Nano. And otherwise, Fractal Designs consistently brings features from the big torrent into the two smaller models. Torrent Compact is a space-saving alternative to the fully-fledged Torrent, but it can still hold SSI-CEB and E-ATX motherboards up to 274 mm wide. The two 180 mm front fans have also been taken into use. Overall, the cooling system has been slimmed down a bit compared to the big torrent. The Compact model lacks 140 mm floor fan and 420 mm radiator openings. A maximum of 360 mm heat exchanger is supported. Torrent Nano could be made even smaller as a Mini-ITX model. It still shows the distinctive ribbed front of the two larger models and houses a single 180 mm front fan from the factory.
The cheapest variants of the two new models are equipped with side parts in steel. Torrent Nano Black Solid will cost 115.99 euros and Torrent Compact Black Solid 136.99 euros. With a glass side panel (TG), the suitcases cost 125.99 euros and 147.99 euros, respectively. Only with these TG variants do you also have the choice between black color with tinted glass (Torrent Nano Black TG Dark Tint / Torrent Compact Black TG Dark Tint) or white color with almost clear glass (Torrent Nano White TG Clear Tint / Torrent Compact Nano White TG Clear Tint). In addition to the light strips on the power supply holder, the RGB variants also have A-RGB front fans. It is only available in black with clear glass. Torrent Nano RGB Black TG Light Tint costs 139.99 euros, while Torrent Compact RGB Black TG Light Tint costs 168.99 euros.
We received both test samples in the RGB variant. In addition, Fractal Design provided us with the Adjust 2 A-RGB hardware controller, which we used for light control. This is especially useful if you do not have a motherboard with an A-RGB connection, or if you do not want to use lighting control software. It is available in stores for around 13 euros.
The scope of delivery for both cases is quite extensive. Fractal Design contains not only instructions / warranty information, mounting material and cable ties, but also a cleaning cloth, a small graphics card support and covers for mounting front fans in 120 or 140 mm format. The Adjust-2 lighting control comes with a Y-adapter, instructions and warranty information.
Before we start with the test itself, here is the key data of the case in tabular form:
|Designation:||Fractal design torrent nano||Fractal design torrent compact|
|Material:||Steel, tempered glass, plastic||Steel, tempered glass, plastic|
|Dimensions:||222 x 374 x 417 mm (W x H x D)||222 x 467 x 450 mm (W x H x D)|
|form factor:||Mini ITX, Mini DTX||E-ATX (up to 274 mm wide), SSI-CEB, ATX, Micro-ATX, Mini-ITX|
|Drive:||1x 3.5 / 2.5 inch (inside), 2x 2.5 inch (inside)||1x 3.5 / 2.5 inch (inside), 3x 2.5 inch (inside)|
|Fan:||2x 120/140 or 1/180 mm (front, 1x 180 mm pre-installed), 1x 120 mm (rear panel, optional), 2x 120/140 mm (bottom, optional)||3x 120 or 2x 140/180 mm (front, 2x 180 mm pre-installed), 1x 120 mm (rear panel, optional), 3x 120 / 2×140 / 2x 180 mm (180 mm with Micro-ATX motherboard) (bottom, optional)|
|Radiators (maximum according to manufacturer):||Front: 240/140 mm, rear wall: 120 mm, bottom: 240/280 mm||Front: 360/280 mm, rear wall: 120 mm, bottom: 240/280 mm|
|CPU cooler height (maximum according to manufacturer):||16.5 cm||17.4 cm|
|Graphics card length (maximum according to manufacturer):||33.5 cm with 180 mm front fan, 31 cm with 120/140 mm front fan||33 cm with 180 mm front fan, 34.3 cm with 120/140 mm front bottom fan|
|Weight:||Black TG: 6.0 kg, White TG: 5.8 kg, Black solid: 5.5 kg||Black TG: 8.0 kg / White TG: 7.7 kg / Black solid: 7.4 kg|
|Price:||115.99 euros (Solid), 125.99 euros (TG) and 136.99 euros (TG RGB, each indicative price)||136.99 euros (Solid), 147.99 euros (TG) and 168.99 euros (TG RGB)|