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be quiet! Shadow Base 800 FX review — Impressive optimization at a lower price

The hardware components needed to operate a top-of-the-line gaming PC keep getting bigger and bigger, like GPUs and cooling units. As I started to shop around for upgrades to take my gaming to the next level, I noticed that my current PC case just wasn’t going to make the cut anymore, I needed a bigger case. The folks over at be quiet! were kind enough to send one of their latest specimens over for review, the Shadow Base 800 FX, and it offers an impressive set of features that suffice for virtually all your gaming hardware needs.

I’m upgrading from the NZXT H510 to the Shadow Base 800 FX, which is a more than generous jump in size, so much so that I had to find a completely new home for the PC once it was fully assembled. The Shadow Base 800 FX is almost 73% bigger than the H510, standing at 522mm high, 247mm wide, and 550mm deep (compared to the H510’s 460 x 210 x 428 respectively). Thankfully, I was well prepared and it now sits atop my desk to the side of my monitors. Assembly was fairly easy, even for someone who has only ever assembled a PC once before, and I had everything up and running in no time.

The size difference is already making a huge difference as cables now have more space, no longer pressing against the side glass like they did in the H510. On top of that, the case’s size coupled with how it has been designed to optimize airflow means that the PC can breathe better, even when pushed to its absolute limits. And, as I start to look into upgrading my GPU, it’s a comfort to know that I can fit anything into this case that my heart desires, as well as accommodate whatever the future holds for PC hardware.

I also appreciate how well the cable management is handled. All the cables in your Shadow Base 800 FX case are pre-ran, attached to the case with velcro ties and flowing naturally through. There’s also an RGB controller board on the other side of where your motherboard goes, with your fans and other functions connected to it. There are even a few free ports to run additional fans to, further improving your ability to manage your cables. It’s simply expert-level design, done by people who understand how frustrating cable management can be.

The airflow capabilities are all thanks to the case’s open mesh design. The top, bottom, and front of the case all have mesh paneling to allow air to move freely through the case, helped along by the 4 included Light Wings 140mm PWM fans. More fans are able to be attached inside to the top of the case if you need additional airflow. Some would be concerned about the design also meaning that dust, pet dander, and whatever else lingers in the air can easily get inside the case, but it’s a tight mesh design that allows the air to freely flow through while keeping everything else out. However, if after some time your PC does require some cleaning, the side glass is very easy to remove for access to the interior.

Of course, some of the details are in the name. Manufacturer be quiet! have designed their components not only to optimize airflow, but to also mitigate noise. We’ve all heard it before, the sound of the fans as they spin up, sounding like the PC is about to take flight. The Light Wings fans are built in a way to reduce how much noise they make, even in more demanding configurations. Now the loudest thing in my PC is the GPU (don’t be too concerned, it’s a little older). So, not only is the Shadow Base 800 FX flexible and cool, it’s also silent, like a shadow.

If you’re going to build something fast, it has to have RGB lighting, and the case is loaded with it. The Light Wings fans have RGB and there are strips going down the front of the case. If that wasn’t enough, the ARGB hub allows for an additional 4 more devices to be connected. Unfortunately, there’s no remote for easy customizations or pattern changes. Instead, there’s a button on the front of the case that you can use to click through the different options.

The team at be quiet! also sent over the Dark Rock Elite CPU cooling unit as well as the Straight Power 12 1000W power supply. The Dark Rock Elite is an absolute brick of a cooling unit with aluminum heatsink material and a few fans to keep the CPU cool. The power supply does exactly what the name implies, straight up powering the beast of a computer this is sure to become. And, to keep with the theme, they’re both silent and the cooler even has its own pretty lights that show through the side glass.

When it comes to PC cases, size does matter, and the be quiet! Shadow Base 800 FX delivers on that front and more. The case is backed by a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty that covers the standard wear and tear issues that come with usage. As far as the cost goes, it retails around the $220 USD mark, making it one of the more affordable cases on the market for this level of quality.

Cassie Peterson is an Editor for Gaming Trend but also a sporadic content creator and exceedingly average Rainbow Six Siege player. She goes by MzPanik on Twitter and Twitch and all of the gaming platforms.

be quiet! Shadow Base 800 FX review — Impressive optimization at a lower price
95

Excellent

be quiet! Shadow Base 800 FX

Review Guidelines

The be quiet! Shadow Base 800 FX case delivers on all fronts, from how spacious it is to how quiet it is. Surely, you’ll be able to accommodate all of your PC internals needs and run them at top notch without burning up.

Cassie Peterson

Unless otherwise stated, the product in this article was provided for review purposes.

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