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Fractal Design Define XL R2 Black Silent EATX Full Tower Computer Case

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  • Steel EATX Full Tower
  • Optimally designed for silent computing with high density noise-reducing material throughout
  • Patent pending ModuVent design, allowing the user to either have optimal silence or optimal airflow
  • Both HDD cages can be removed or repositioned
  • Supports up to 4 radiators (1 X 280/240mm, 1 X 240mm, 1 X120mm & 1 X 140/120mm)
  • Integrated 3 Speed Fan Controller
  • New tool-less front fan holder makes switching front fans a breeze
  • Removable Dust Filters
  • 2x USB3.0 2x USB 2.0, Audio In/Out Front Ports

  • Overview
  • Specifications
  • Warranty & Returns
  • Reviews
general information

The Define XL R2 is in a sleek and stylish Scandinavian form, capable of providing superb cooling and ventilation capabilities with exceptional expandability. Equipped with Fractal Design’s innovative ModuVent feature, this chassis has an updated internal layout that offers greater expandability, modularity and flexibility, including capacity for 9 PCI cards and two HDD cages that can be repositioned to provide more space for water cooling radiators.

Key features

Generous Interior Space for Your PC Components

With roomy interior space, the full-tower computer case gives you great flexibility to build your system. It can accommodate:

  • Graphics cards up to 330mm in length with the top HDD cage installed or up to 480mm in length when the top cage is removed
  • CPU coolers up to 170 mm tall when no fan is installed ion the side panel
  • ATX PSUs up to 190 mm deep when using the bottom fan location; when not using this fan location, longer PSUs (up to 345 mm deep) can be used
general information

Great Expandability

The case provides multiple drive bays to install your HDDs/SSDs and features a total of nine expansion slots, offering the perfect level of expandability you desire.

  • Two HDD cages provide up to eight 3.5” HDD trays which are also all compatible with SSDs.
  • Four external 5.25" drive bays
  • Up to nine expansion slots provide flexibility for multiple graphics cards solutions.
general information

Both HDD cages can be removed or repositioned. Top HDD cage can be removed or repositioned for increased airflow whereas bottom HDD cage can be repositioned further into the case to allow for front radiator mount.

Cooling System

Maximum Airflow Performance

With the ability to support up to seven fans (three fans included), the case can produce voluminous airflow to cool down even the most extreme system.

The Layout of Fans:

  • Front: two 120/140mm fans (included is a hydraulic bearing 140mm Silent Series R2 fan, 1000 RPM speed)
  • Rear: one 120/140mm fan (included is a hydraulic bearing 140mm Silent Series R2 fan, 1000 RPM speed)
  • Top: two 120/140mm fans (not included); positions also support 240/280mm slim radiators
  • Bottom: one 120/140mm fan (included is a hydraulic bearing 140mm Silent Series R2 fan, 1000 RPM speed)
  • Side: one 120/140mm fan (not included)
general information

Fan controller:

Three-speed fan controller is strategically integrated in the front panel and supports up to three fans, letting you manually adjust the fans’ speeds.

Long lifespan:

The preinstalled three Silent Series R2 140mm fans feature hydraulic bearings which contribute to a longer life expectancy.

general information

Water Cooling Compatibility

With the ability to support up to seven fans (three fans included), the case can produce voluminous airflow to cool down even the most extreme system.

  • Front: 240mm radiator when HDD cages are removed or repositioned
  • Top: 240 and 280mm slim radiators
  • Bottom: 120mm radiators
  • Rear: 120 and 140mm radiators

Thoughtful Designs

  • The case is constructed of high-density noise-reducing material, making an optimal silent case.
  • Exclusive ModuVent design allows you to choose between optimal silence and maximum airflow. If cooling becomes more of a priority than noise reduction, the ModuVent plates (three ModuVent plates - two in the top and one in the side) can be removed to expose additional air vents for optional fans.
  • New tool-less front fan holder makes switching front fans a breeze.
  • You can route the cables through the thick rubber grommets and keep them tucked away in the 26 mm routing space behind the motherboard plate.
  • The I/O ports are conveniently placed on the front edge of the top panel, providing you with added convenience. The I/O panel includes - two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, audio in/out jacks, power button with LED (blue), reset button, and fan controller (behind the door)
general information

Learn more about the Fractal Design FD-CA-DEF-XL-R2-BL

Warranty, Returns, And Additional Information
  • Warranty
  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year
  • Read full details
  • Return Policies
    • Return for refund within: 30 days
    • Return for replacement within: 30 days
  • This item is covered by's Standard Return Policy.
Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
Verified Owner
5/ 5
No issues here 5/2/2020 6:58:06 AM

Pros: -Tons of room inside.
-Quiet. Very quiet.
-Easy to maneuver in.
-The HDD mounts are maneuverable.
-Put together quite nice.
-Does not feel cheap.
-Lots of space for cooling options.

Cons: -Heavy as heck with everything inside. Take it slow.

Overall Review: This case is a beast. You can tell by the build that this was made to last. I'm going to enjoy this case for many years to come.

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Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
Verified Owner
5/ 5
Finally, lots of room 4/24/2020 10:07:10 AM

Pros: - solid construction
- lots and lots of room for fans
- lots of room for hard disks / ssd
- dont like windows and this case has no window
- lots of sound absorption material
- packaging for shipment perfect.

Cons: Wish I discovered the case long ago

Overall Review: Perfect for lots of gpu's and no taking window.

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Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
Verified Owner
5/ 5
Great full size tower and so quiet even with 4 spinning drives 4/2/2020 4:57:05 PM

Pros: The build quality is excellent and insulated on the inside. I recommend this case to anyone looking for plenty of room and silent operation. It is perfect for ESXi.

Cons: None

Overall Review: I highly recommend this case to anyone that needs room to install extra drives.

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Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
Verified Owner
1/ 5
What was once an excellent case by an excellent company is now a shoddy product by a careless company 3/6/2020 3:26:35 PM

Pros: I have an older model of this case. Excellent in every way. Quietest. Which is important. Spacious. Design is well thought out.

Cons: Extreme weight makes the plastic bit (face plate) prone to damage if the case is not packed well, protected well, and shipped well.
Company unresponsive to consumer issues.

Overall Review: I can't recommend Fractal Design anymore.
I just ordered the Fractal Design XL R2 and returned it.
The face plate was severely damaged, but the box was undamaged.
So we used up some of earth's resources to build this heavy thing so that careless people could throw it around then stuff it in a box thus wasting fuel / pollution / time / money shipping the stupid busted thing to me so I could waste fuel /pollution / time / money shipping it back. What a sad unnecessary wasted cycle repeated so many times for so many people. I emailed Fractal with photos and got a lackadaisical response a week later asking for a serial number. I provided it and never heard back, so I was forced to return it. So the employees don't care anymore ... not the ones building / packing / loading / emailing ... which of course means management must be in that group too. Sad. Sad that UPS works hard to get me a perfect looking very heavy box filled with useless junk that they get to haul back.

0 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Manufacturer Response:
Hello Clyfton,
I apologize for the delayed response you experienced. We're working hard to address customer concerns in a timely fashion. The request for the serial number is an important step in tracking the case for a variety of reasons, and a replacement part or case can't be issued without it. I see that you've already returned the case, but I'd like to encourage you to give us a call at 855-446-3722 so we can track down the problem. It is never acceptable for a case to arrive damaged, so I hope you take the opportunity to speak with us about your experience.
Best regards, Andrew Leibman, Fractal Design North America
3/ 5
It's ok. 2/20/2020 11:35:23 AM

Pros: Very plain looking. I'm not a fan of overembellished "gamer" computer cases that are so rampant in the market so the simple box does the trick. No RGB (unless you want that, no judging here), no bells and whistles except for some strange dust filters and a door at the front.
Lots of drive bays.
Very, very roomy in terms of the motherboard side of the case. Liquid cooling folks could get a kick out of this one, maybe.
Almost everything that can be mounted to it mounts as it should save for one (see below).
The front door appeases me.

Cons: It's HEAVY. I'm an older sort and I get scared whenever I have to open the case to replace thermal paste and I have to put the computer on it's side in fear of it toppling over... When I have to move it I have family members carry my computer for me and they'll complain of how heavy the thing is.
Top chassis panel only accommodates specific AIO sizes: my Corsair H110-i can't be fully mounted to it.
Cable management is a nightmare. The back panel behind the motherboard has zero room for any cabling, meaning your cables are going to be squished. Likewise, the holes you put the cables through are very stiff and hard to shove them in.
Built-in fans are a pain to replace, looking at you, bottom-of-the-case fan.
Not a fan of the dust filters, they can be a pain to remove, clean, and remount to the chassis.
Bottom bits holding it up broke off after a month of moving the thing around.
Front ports can be a hit or miss. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't.

Overall Review: I bought this case about two years ago as part of an upgrade build and I still use it to this day. It plays its roll as a chassis fairly okay but I still can't help but feel it has a lot of wasted potential. This is especially apparent in the abysmal cable management options - 24-pin power cables are thick.

At the very least, thieves won't try to steal your computer because of how absurdly heavy it is.

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Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
Verified Owner
3/ 5
A fairly basic, yet expandable case. Don't expect much. 12/7/2019 8:30:32 AM

Pros: 1: A useful number of 5.25 bays. People need to learn that those bays are extremely useful, and those of us who build more workstation-leaning machines appreciate a couple of optical drives, card readers, extra USB ports, hot swap bays... Honestly, I could use another one.

Optical drives are NOT dead. They're required in video and film production, as well as in data transfer in certain environments, and some of us still enjoy CDs, DVDs, and older software that we paid for and get to keep forever. Don't penalize us for your tempered glass fad, people...

2: Plenty of brackets for hard drives, but there are some negatives involved with those. They wasted space for quite a few more by using those stupid "tool-less" mounts. That said, while I don't appreciate the orientation, in the real world, it doesn't really affect cooling.

3: Cavernous space with a few negatives. There's too much of it, honestly, and it's not used efficiently, but it's there. You're not going to run out of space any time soon if you've got a bunch of cards or a water reservoir.

Cons: 1: There isn't as much space on the back side for cable management as you'd expect. There's too much room on the business side, and not enough behind the motherboard tray. Fractal is a little bad for wasting that space, and I don't know why. They're so close to having the perfect "build it in an hour and be done with it" case, but not quite there.

2: Finish quality isn't where it needs to be. That's a very cheap powder job. It's not much better than the satin black on a cheap winch bumper. Maybe PC-exclusive builders will get over it, but if you're into cars or have spent more than five minutes in a Harbor Freight, you KNOW this finish.

If they'd dropped the tool-less nonsense, they could have afforded a better finish.

3: Few of the features you expect when buying anything called "Define" are present. I was at least hoping for a "backup" SSD mount and those quick release cable brackets, but no such luck. It seems strange, because that makes more sense on this case than a mid tower.

4: No USB Type C 3.1 header connector. This is getting pretty ridiculous. I'd be happy to buy their expansion kit, but it's made for the Define R6, and not indicated for this case. At least give me the option, to save me trouble. We buy Fractal cases for fast builds we need running yesterday, and for the 5.25 bays; not modding. Know your customer base.

5: The 5.25 bay covers are still flimsy, and break easily upon removal. Good design, bad implementation. I like the looks, the functionality, and the positive retention, but the plastic hinges are too small to support the force required to remove them sometimes.

6: HDD bay is oriented improperly out of the box. I don't care how hard it is to keep cables clean, not even I swap drives enough to need them facing straight out like that instead of leaving a duct for the air. Get good with your cables, people.

7: This isn't Fractal exclusive (the white paint is, though...), but I'm tired of this "tool-less" nonsense. Four screws are all that's needed, and everything would be MUCH cleaner, and you'd have MUCH more space to work with.

Stop this. If you can't spin a screwdriver, maybe computers aren't for you... It takes only seconds longer than a tool-less arrangement. Again, get good with your cables, people. Nobody needs this stuff, it adds cost to the case, and it gets in the way.

8: No built-in HDD activity light. We have these for a reason, Fractal.

9: It didn't come with a PC speaker. Come on. That's about the most useful thing in the world, nice to hear for us old-school builders who want that audible confirmation, and it's only a few cents. Sure, I can wire up my own or just buy one, but it should be included here.

10: Personal beef: I don't like those grommets, and usually pull them for U channel.

11: With three motherboards, I found the cable routing holes to be offset an annoying amount. It's like they deliberately missed every location by about a centimeter, and didn't put one where they really should have. I'm not so sure they really did too many test builds with this case.

12: A couple front panel connectors could stand to be a bit longer, but overall they can be routed well without a headache. This is that universal "another two inches makes everything better" scenario.

Overall Review: I don't want people to think this is a bad case. It's not. It's just a half-baked case. They weren't finished when they stopped designing it. It needed at least one more prototype iteration and to be updated with the rest of their connectivity lineup.

Overall, this is a basic, acceptable case for general purpose building.

There is a segment of the population, of which I am a part, that spends a lot of time building very expensive dedicated, tailored machines. That generally means our own stuff just needs to be done quickly and easily. The mechanic usually isn't interested in spending much time on his daily driver, after all.

So, for the higher end integrator who doesn't feel like building his own fancy rig, the person who just wants their machine running "right now", people who need multiple 5.25" bays, or even the guy that can't make a decision... It's a good option.

This would have been a much nicer case in 1998, but now, it's... Acceptable. Think of it as a mini van. The mid-size Defines are FAR superior cases, and this one should match their quality. That's what I was expecting.

This case either needs to be updated, or they need to find more space for bays in their smaller units. It's simply out of date in just as many ways as it is notably useful.

I'm fine with the case, and it would be a good platform for a little modding to make it better, but that's not the point of this thing, and it's obvious. This case shouldn't need modding to build a relatively clean professional machine. It's so close... Finish the job on the next revision.

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
Verified Owner
5/ 5
Quiet and roomy! 12/4/2019 8:07:07 PM

Pros: - Lots of room
- Good cable management
- Quiet stock fans

Cons: - Not enough to dock an egg, but if you're filling up the 3.5" cages with HDDs, you're not going to have a good spot to mount an SSD. I can't find any mounting point on the back of the mobo mount.

Overall Review: I would definitely recommend this to someone looking for a nice looking server case.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
Verified Owner
5/ 5
Large quiet case. 8/2/2019 8:23:20 PM

Pros: Very quiet and large. You can fit any card in it.

Cons: It’s also heavy.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you?
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