Last year, we looked at Fractal Design’s Core 1000, their entry level chassis that can be had for under $40. It performed “okay”, which is about all you can expect from a budget case. The newly redesigned Core 3000 looks to change more than a few elements of the Core 1000, and in fact other than the “Core” branding it bears little in common with the Core 1000. It’s bigger and heavier for one, measuring 200mm x 444mm x 480mm (7.87” x 17.48” x 18.90”), so this is no longer intended as a small PC box. It also comes with three fans standard: a 140mm fan in front, 120mm fan in back, and 120mm fan up top. Here’s the full list of specifications.

Fractal Design Core 3000 USB 3.0 Specifications
Motherboard Form Factor Micro ATX, ATX, DTX
Drive Bays External 2 x 5.25” (one adapter for external 3.5”)
Internal 6 x 3.5"/2.5"
Cooling Front 1 x 140mm (provided)
1 x 120mm
Rear 1 x 120mm fan mount (provided)
Top 2 x 120mm (one provided)
Side 1 x 120/140mm
Bottom 1 x 120mm
Expansion Slots 7 (ventilated covers)
I/O Port 2 x USB 3.0 (with internal connector)
2 x USB 2.0
1 x Headphone
1 x Microphone
Power Supply Size 160mm with bottom fan
250mm without bottom fan
Weight 17.4 lbs.
Dimensions 7.87” x 17.48” x 18.90”
200mm x 444mm x 480mm
Special Features Silicone grommets for drive cage
Adaptor plate and cage for mounting a 3.5" drive in a 5.25" bay
Price $75 MSRP

Other items not specifically listed in the above table include an upper HDD cage that can be rotated or removed, allowing the installation of even the largest GPUs (Fractal Design lists GPU clearance as 270mm with the cage or 420mm without—I’m not sure any GPU will ever need 420mm of clearance again, or at least I hope not). Dust covers are also included for the PSU and front fan positions, and the HDD/SSD trays are equipped with silicon vibration dampening grommets.

The Core 3000 USB 3.0 is currently available in some markets, but the US does not appear to be among them. We expect that to change within the coming weeks, and given the popularity of Fractal Design that will likely be sooner rather than later. Of course, the other big change is the doubling of the MSRP, which was inevitable given the improved features, but it looks like the Core 3000 should be competitive with other similarly priced offerings.

Source: Fractal Design PR

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  • StraightPipe - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    I expect alot more from least a single picture of the inside of the case...
  • SilthDraeth - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    I am pretty sure this is a teaser of a review to come, if they can get their hands on a sample.
  • JarredWalton - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    This is Pipeline, which is where we can post short stories about things we find interesting. I thought enough people liked Fractal Design that a note about a new case was worthwhile.
  • Bob Todd - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    I'm glad for the heads up. I built two budget machines for family members with the Core 1000 and was very happy with it for the price. This one looks decent for the money as well.
  • adrianlegg - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    For me it seemed obvious, but I'm constantly surprised, so I have to ask:

    Is there any difference between on chassis usb.3.0/2.0 outputs?
    Since it's all digital and backward compatible, isn't it just the marketing stuff, and if I would connect usb2.0 from chassis to 3.0 on mobo, it would work as 3.0?
  • Kepe - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    It doesn't work that way. USB 3 cables have four more wires andcontacts than USB 2. So the USB 2 header on the front of your chassis doesn't have the necessary contacts to operate as a USB 3 port.
  • adrianlegg - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

  • Galatian - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    I recently builds my first custom gaming rig and was going with the Core 3000, which was recommended in the Midrange Guide. Since I really have to point of comparison: how are the fans? Are they any good. Are there more quiet yet equally powerful fans out there?
  • lever_age - Friday, February 1, 2013 - link

    Strangely enough, the Core 3000 USB 3.0 seems to be missing the cheap PCI-slot fan controller that was included on the original Core 3000. Or at least, they make no mention of it. All the key features other than USB 3.0, like top rotateable HDD drive cage, silicone grommets, 3 fans, etc., were available in the original.
  • Olaf van der Spek - Monday, February 4, 2013 - link

    Comparing this to the mATX Core 1000 doesn't make sense, this is a ATX case.
    I'd love to see an update Core 1000 though.

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