The BMW M3 is the world’s most popular sports sedan. With driving performance and splendid design that cannot be experienced in existing sedans as weapons, it has continued its legacy as a representative vehicle of BMW for over 36 years.
Of course, due to its high popularity and excellent performance, the price is not cheap. The latest model, the 6th-generation BMW M3, is priced at more than 120 million won.
Because of the price range that no one can beat, many car enthusiasts had no choice but to turn around with tears in their eyes. Although the driving performance is somewhat lacking compared to the M3, the 3 series vehicle is clearly ahead of the M3, and the emotional element of the M3 is well reflected, and the price is relatively low, so it is attractive enough for car enthusiasts.
On the other hand, it is not uncommon in other industries to introduce a product with a relatively low price by changing some elements while maintaining the characteristics of a popular high-end product like BMW.
Fractal Design, which is famous as a manufacturer of high-end PC cases, is also introducing case products for that purpose.
‘Focus G’ successor model resembling the ‘Pop’ series
The Focus 2 series resembles the ‘Pop’ series released in Korea in June 2022. It feels similar in several places, including the two front-mounted ARGB cooling fans, the overall chassis shape, and the tempered glass side panel.
However, the product that actually became the basis of the Focus 2 series is the ‘Focus G’, a case that Fractal Design introduced about 5 years ago. Unlike the high-end case of Fractal Design, it is characterized by simplifying the internal structure and excluding additional elements that are not necessary when assembling or operating a PC as much as possible.
It can be seen as a practically designed product while maintaining the basic sensibility of the Fractal Design case. Of course, the price was also lower than the high-end cases of fractal design.
The Focus 2 RGB Clear removes the 5.25-inch and 3.5-inch drive bays from the Focus G to free up more interior space. By utilizing the increased space, a 360mm radiator can also be installed on the front, allowing various water-cooled CPU coolers to be used.
Like the Focus G, the number of front cooling fans is two, but the size has been increased from 120mm to 140mm. Since the air volume is greater that much, the heat inside the case can be cooled quickly.
The cooling fan is ‘Fractal Aspect 14’, and it has an ARGB (Addressable RGB) LED built-in, so it is more beautiful and more colorful than the Focus G’s cooling fan that only shines in white color. Rifle bearings with high durability and low noise are applied inside the cooling fan central shaft.
The side panels have been changed from acrylic to tempered glass. Although it is slightly heavier, it is highly durable, so it is not easily scratched and can withstand any kind of impact, so you can use it with confidence.
The Focus 2 RGB Clear has dense vents in the form of a mesh on the front and two 140mm cooling fans right behind it. Therefore, it is possible to keep the PC temperature at an appropriate level by quickly introducing cold air from the outside into the case.
There is also a ventilation hole on the back of the case, but a separate cooling fan is not provided. Basically, exhaust is done through the front cooling fan, so there is no big problem, but if you are using a high-end graphic card that generates extreme heat, it is recommended to add a 120mm size cooling fan at the rear.
The top of the product also has a large area of ventilation. A magnetic dust filter is provided, so when attached, the heat inside the PC can be discharged while preventing foreign substances from accumulating inside the case.
Next to the top vent, there are interfaces for connecting external devices, a power button, and an RGB controller button. The Type-C port is blocked, but you need to purchase ‘USB-C 10Gbps Cable MODEL-D’, which is sold separately.
Internal structure considering expandability and convenience
In Focus 2 RGB Clear, graphic cards up to 405mm in length can be installed. Even the highest-end graphics cards such as the GeForce RTX 3090 Ti or Radeon RX 6950 XT can be installed.
The air-cooled CPU cooler can be installed up to 170mm in height. Even for bulky tower-type air-cooled CPU coolers, most products are around 160mm in height, so compatibility is guaranteed.
The power supply can be installed up to a standard ATX standard with a length of up to 250mm. There is no cover that separates the space above the power supply mount. So, you might be worried that the various power cables of the power supply will be exposed through the tempered glass as they are and spoil the aesthetics, but there is a ‘shroud cover’ on the side panel that just hides the location, so there is no problem.
On the opposite side of the tempered glass side panel, there is a space for a 3.5-inch HDD and a 2.5-inch SSD. Both can be installed two at a time, but the 2.5-inch SSD is fixed with an ‘SSD quick clip’ instead of a screw, so it can be easily detached.
Water-cooled CPU cooler radiator is compatible up to 360mm
The Focus 2 RGB Clear can be equipped with a water-cooled CPU cooler radiator on the top, front, and rear of the product. It is compatible up to 240mm at the top, up to 360mm at the front, and up to 120mm at the rear.
When mounting the radiator on top, you must use the fixture that is a standard component of the Focus 2 RGB Clear. It consists of 4 metal plates with 4 screw holes and 8 screws. Refer to the picture in the instruction manual and fix it with screws.
A metal plate is needed to space the radiator and other hardware inside the Focus 2 RGB Clear. If you just try to attach the radiator to the screw hole on the top of the case, it will come in contact with the motherboard heat sink or memory, so you need a separate fixing device.
For reference, memory can be used with products with a maximum height of 45mm. The memory with the heat sink attached may not be able to mount the radiator due to its height, so it is necessary to check in advance.
When mounting the radiator on the front of the case, there is no need for a fixing device, but you need to remove the two pre-installed cooling fans to secure mounting space. The two separated cooling fans can be mounted on the top, so you can use it together with a water-cooled CPU cooler.
To see how good the basic cooling performance of the Focus 2 RGB Clear is, I assembled a PC and tested the temperature. The test system specifications are as follows.
CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900X
CPU Cooler: Lian Li GALAHAD AIO 240 ARGB
RAM: Gail DDR4-2666 CL19 PRISTINE 8GB x2
Motherboard: Asus TUF Gaming B550M-PLUS (Wi-Fi)
Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Founders Edition
SSD: Seagate Firecuda 510 M.2 NVMe 1TB
PSU: Micronics Classic II 750W 80PLUS GOLD 230V EU Full Modular White
To check the cooling performance in the state where the CPU and graphics card generate the most heat, the CPU usage rate was raised to close to 100% with the Prime95 test, and at the same time, the 3DMark ‘Time Spy Extreme’ benchmark was run to determine the GPU of the graphics card. The utilization rate has been increased as much as possible. While maintaining this state for more than 30 minutes, CPU and GPU temperatures were measured with Ryzen Master and GPU-Z.
As a result of the test, the CPU temperature was measured to be around 72℃ and the GPU temperature was measured to be around 76℃. Both CPU and GPU are guaranteed to operate normally at below 90℃, so it can be considered a sufficiently stable state. If you install a 120mm cooling fan on the back of the case, it seems that the temperature of the CPU and GPU can be lowered further.
Gorgeous ARGB LED Cooling Fan
When the Fractal Aspect 4 cooling fan of Focus 2 RGB Clear is connected to the 5V ARGB connector on the motherboard, the built-in ARGB LED is activated, which can be controlled by the LED software provided by the motherboard manufacturer.
And for power supply, you need to connect the SATA power cable of the power supply to the SATA power connector.
I tried controlling the ARGB LED lighting of the cooling fan using AURA Sync from ASUS. It is possible to change the lighting color and lighting mode in various ways, and if you know the RGB color table, you can directly input it and change it.
If there is no 5V ARGB connector on the motherboard or there is no place to plug in other devices, you can use the LED mode provided by Focus 2 RGB Clear. If you remove the red cover shown in the photo above, a 5V ARGB connector appears, which can be activated by plugging in a cooling fan cable.
The basic LED mode is controlled by the RGB controller button we saw on the top of the case earlier. Press and hold the button for more than 2 seconds to change the lighting mode. Static color mode in which one color is maintained, Slow breathing mode in which the RGB LED gradually brightens and then darkens repeatedly, Slow chase mode in which the RGB LED color changes continuously, Northern Lights Northern lights mode that mimics the , and Off mode that completely turns off the RGB LED.
Simple and practical PC case
So far, we have looked at the Focus 2 RGB Clear. Compared to the case of Fractal Design’s upper lineup, it looks simple and doesn’t have many additional functions, but it is a product that is practical enough because it is a product that has the basics.
The price range is also relatively low, so if you want to use a case with the sensibility of fractal design without burdening you with a large cost, please pay attention to the Focus 2 RGB Clear.