OCUK Tech Labs Chameleon Hardline Review
The Enthoo is gigantic. 250mm wide, 650mm deep, 600mm high. It dwarfs my NZXT Switch 810, which is hardly a small case itself. It is a fantastic quality item too, with everything feeling exceptionally solid and plenty of cool design features which would help make building a system within it easier than it might otherwise be. Of course the Chameleon is pre-built, so that doesn't enter into it. It's reassuring though.
There is so much hardware inside the Chameleon that the quality of the cable management around the back has to be seen to be believed. You can tell a lot about the attention to detail of the builder by the state of the hidden bits and the back of the Chameleon shouts loudly. Excellent.
Just in case you doubted the sheer size of the Phanteks case, the pump and power supply are mounted around the back. Yes there is a small indent in the motherboard tray, but you certainly wont have any issues putting the back side panel on because of inflexible cables, unlike many cases we've seen.
There are many people on our forums who feel queasy when thinking about buying a pre-filled water-cooled system. We don't understand why as we've dealt with dozens of them and never had a single issue. If the concept of inflexible hardline tubing makes you even more fearful of any bumps the delivery van might encounter then the quality of the packing inside the Chameleon will reassure even the biggest chicken little amongst you. OcUK have done an exceptional job in keeping the tubing cushioned and supported throughout the delivery process.
Once all the packing has been carefully removed the sheer splendour of the Chameleon is revealed. If you had any doubts about the aesthetic benefits of hardline tubing they are immediately dispelled. It looks trouser-tentingly gorgeous. It's the kind of system that make you check if it's okay to marry inanimate objects. Although available in a multitude of colour options our review system was, rather obviously, white. Now of the team here at OC3D I'm very much a fan of the orange whilst our Führer is known for loving white more than P.W Botha, but there is no denying that the Chameleon looks sumptuous in its frosty tones. Helped by the excellent ASUS Sabertooth motherboard and the clarity of the coolant used.
It's difficult not to just sit in awe of the aesthetics, but there are also treats wherever you look. Who doesn't love the thought of 2GB/s data transfer on their OS drive thanks to the Samsung 950.
The star of the show though has to be the tubing. OcUK Tech Labs have done a masterful job.
With any water-cooling option from the cheapest AIO CPU Cooler all the way up to the hardline pipes of the Chameleon there is a little air in the system caused by the transit. This instantly goes away when you first fire the system up, never to return. It's why everything gurgles when you first turn on your new rig/H100/whatever. Serendipitously the air in the Chameleon allows us to show off the transparency of the tubing which in turn emphasises the quality of the opaque coolant. Wins all round.
The lighting when it's on is subtle rather than searing, and the mild blue cast that appears in our camera lens is purely white to the human eye. Until Sony send me a A7R ii then such chromatic aberrations will have to be tolerated.
It's a bonny thing indeed. You will never tire of looking at it, whichever of the colour options you choose.