The Silent Base 600 is one of the more expensive cases in our Labs, but the build quality reflects its price for the most part, and you can save a little cash by purchasing the non-windowed version too. The steel panels and structure are rigid, and all the parts, including the window, are neatly aligned, although the plastic on the front panel is a little too thin.
South of the generously equipped I/O panel is a half-height magnetic front door, which can be rehinged to open in either direction as needed. Behind this door sit the fan control switch and the covers for the three optical drive bays. The fan controller has three speed settings and can power up to three fans; by default this setup includes the 140mm front intake and 120mm rear exhaust
fans. In addition, there are four more fan mounts available to boost airflow.
With the door open, you can also slide up the dust filter guarding the front intake area. It’s a neat mechanism that’s complemented by the bottom slide-out dust filter for the PSU and fan mount in this area. The roof has a small series of vent slits too, but they’re not big enough for dust to be a pressing issue, so the absence of a filter there is unimportant.
It’s fairly easy to work with the side panels, but the roof and front panels require awkward unclipping from within the case. With the case open, you quickly see the focus on noise reduction. Sound-deadening material lines the back of multiple panels, while big rubber case feet, the double-layered window, a fully isolated PSU mounting area and the rubberised hard drive mounting arms all aim to quell noise and vibrations.
Any 5.25in drives are installed with simple tool-free clips but the cage itself is locked in place. Still, the single hard drive cage, accommodating three 3.5in drives and a single 2.5in drive, can be removed via three thumbscrews. It can then be hung off the 5.25in cage or installed inside it to clear out the lower front section for boosted airflow. Meanwhile, two dedicated trays behind the motherboard cater for SSDs.
However, there’s no official support for radiators in this lower front area. It shouldn’t be hard to install one with a few modifications, and slim 240mm and 280mm radiators (and possibly thicker 240mm radiators, depending on your other components) are supported in the roof, but this area is just begging for large radiator support.
On the plus side, the cable-routing system is good, with grommets covering suitably large holes and a decent amount of room behind the motherboard, although more anchor points would be useful. Another neat touch is the black sleeved internal cables, which provide a consistent look.
The maximum speed delta T result of 55°C for the CPU ((Core i7-870) ) isn’t bad at all either, although 58°C for the GPU (HD 5870) is more middle ground. Removing the hard drive cage has no effect on the CPU temperature, which is more reliant on the exhaust fan, but the GPU gets 1°C cooler. Both components are affected when you lower the fan speeds, but the CPU much more so, suggesting that the roof vents have limited impact. The case is definitely on the quiet side too, even at full speed.
The Silent Base 600 is far from a bad chassis, and it impresses in a number of areas, especially the attention to detail and focus when it comes to noise reduction. However, its comparatively high price makes it hard to recommend next to the feature-rich and cool NZXT H440.