Fractal Design Ridge: A small puzzle for adults

Exterior

The latest hardware from the Swedish company is a case for Mini-ITX boards. However, thanks to the sensible interior layout, it is also possible to mount larger components. Their cooling is taken care of by the ubiquitous perforation of the outer plates and two 140 mm fans. With or without them? You’ll have to decide what you want to cool more effectively. We measured four different scenarios in our tests.

Basic parameters


Exterior

In a small box, the case is filled not with polystyrene, as is customary, but with cardboard stuffing. The first thing you’ll pull out from inside is the accessories. There is quite a lot of them considering the small size, but without most of them you would not be able to use the case to its full potential. You will find a large stand, a small stand, an extension for the PCI Express connector, screws and of course a detailed illustrated manual.

As everywhere, you have to start by demounting both side panels. These have a slightly modified latching mechanism as we know from other Fractal Design model lines. There is a screw at the back and a locking latch at the front. The side panels flex slightly even at their 0.85mm thickness.But this is probably due to the large area on them with holes.

Even though the entire case will be disassembled prior to installation, you can start by mounting a stand on the bottom. A case that has good stability is better to work with. You need to first unscrew and unclick the bottom part as well as the side panels. You can then mount the stand on it, the larger of the two in the accessories.

   

In addition to the vertical position of the case, you also have a second option, the horizontal position. This is created by screwing the two stands onto the right side panel. The large one at the front and the small one at the back or they can also be on the sides of the side panel (top and bottom). Now you can position the case according to your preference and available space.

   

An elegant impression of completeness is created by the grey textile on the front panel. I have to admit that it is not so pronounced in the black version of the case. It stands out more in white. In addition to making the front panel more solid, it also serves as an exhaust where warm air can escape through the fabric.

There are three USB connectors on the bottom (or the side, depending on how you position the case). One of them is also type C. Then there is also a combined 3.5 mm jack, for headphones or a microphone. Between the USB connectors is a smaller power button with a recess for better tactile orientation. This is quite sensitive and it doesn’t take much to activate the button.

   

The panel can be removed very easily for better access to the insides. It is attached to the structure by four strong magnets. In addition to the fact that the front is made up of metal, there’s a screwed-in plastic perforation on the back. Its main purpose is to protect the fabric from unwanted pressure and thus damage.

   


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One comment Add comment

  1. I wonder how the thermals of an exhaust only setup will look like. So three 80mm exhaust fans, with the two 140mm fans removed. That would be a negative pressure setup which I think will provide the best balance of CPU and GPU thermals, though it will severely limit GPU options.

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