BitFenix Pandora Window Review (Page 4 of 4)

Page 4 - Installation and Conclusion

The installation process is generally straightforward with the BitFenix Pandora Window. For the most part, it was easy to work with, but some areas were a bit tight to work around, even for a smaller form factor chassis. I first installed my motherboard and power supply, slotting in all my cables in the proper place, while keeping in mind where I want to place the rest of my hardware. This is to ensure I optimize the limited space that I am given. With the drive rack removed, I plugged in all the modular cables that I would need to use, then have all the respective case and radiator fans hooked up. This procedure would get a majority of the cabling work out of the way while ensuring best use of space.

I then installed my SSD on the drive rack, and mounted it in front of all the cables in its original spot to give it a clean look. I also mounted an additional HDD under the top panel where there was space for it. At this point, I connected as many cables as I can to the respective hardware. Following this process would probably simplify your installation process by quite a bit, as the only thing you have to deal with from this point on is the video card and any other accessories you want to connect. For users that are planning to use a 240mm radiator, it is possible to install, but the clearance between the radiator and the drive rack is minimal, so I would suggest installing the radiator first before mounting the drive rack in place.

On the other side, the CPU backplate opening is more than large enough to accommodate most motherboard sockets across different generations. However, I found it a bit tight when installing cooler. If BitFenix were to shimmer it a bit more, it will give more room for users to easily install aftermarket backplates. Once everything was in place, I found it quite difficult to keep the back panel on the case as there were quite a bit of cables to manage behind the motherboard tray. This is especially true for users that have more hardware in their systems that require more cables. If would have been nice if BitFenix were to provide an additional half a centimeter or so here as it will satisfy users such as Yours Truly in accommodating more cables, especially the 24-pin power cable. Other than that, the build was straightforward, as long as the end user is a cabling fanatic, which is what the BitFenix Pandora Window is originally designed for. Because of the limited space behind the motherboard tray, I found that the stiffness from my cables kept pushing the side panel off. I eventually opted to reroute my cables a bit more, while tightening my twist ties, in order to keep everything in check.

After plugging in everything, my system configured inside the BitFenix Pandora Window is ready to roll. I hit the quarter-circle shaped power button located on top, and my computer came to life. Your finished system should resemble what I have above, since there is nothing much you can change here anyway. The power button should light up and should flash on the reset switch to indicate HDD activity. With additional lights configured in your system, your configuration should look stunning, which is what the BitFenix Pandora Window is advertised for -- to show off all your goods behind the window. The big window is made for some sweet LED lighting. Do not go without it if you are planning to buy this chassis for your next build.

On a scale from 0.0 to 10.0 where 0.0 is silent and 10.0 is the loudest, the two fans would come in at 3.5/10 subjective sound rating at full blast, which is pretty decent for fans of this caliber. I am quite sensitive to perceived sound volume, and if you are a quiet PC enthusiast, the BitFenix Pandora Window will require some modifications to suit your needs. If you are not doing anything demanding, having just the top fan will cool the system more than sufficiently.

It does not take a whole lot of effort in rebranding a BitFenix Pandora Window into an APH Networks chassis. For those that are interested in this case simply for the fact that you can include your own custom logo, you may want to think twice. BitFenix has included software in which the end user can download from their website. To display your own logo on the front, make sure your logo is in the same folder as your software. Then, drag and drop your image onto the executable program, wait a couple of seconds, and your logo will be displayed. Be sure your logo fits the dimensions, as specified previously. Else, you may be left with a stretched image. Personally speaking, I wish BitFenix has put more effort into programming the software. Firstly, I would have preferred a GUI so end users have more control over the settings. Secondly, even if no GUI interface was provided, I do not like the fact that the logo gets distorted. It would have been nice if the program itself would proportionately add empty black space on the sides so the logo retains its aspect ratio. This way, the end user would not have to make a handful of calculations to get the dimensions of the logo correct before uploading it to the program itself.


The BitFenix Pandora Window is a very compact and slick looking case with a digital logo display to boot. The way I see it, the BitFenix Pandora Window is a step in the right direction in terms of looks. Its brushed aluminum panels give it a very clean and slick appearance. This is not to mention the windowed version displays your computer's hardware nicely, especially when integrated with LED lights. Its front panel features a cool digital display for your own custom logo, which definitely adds quite a bit of style, especially if you are going to show off your latest hardware to your friends. The side panels attach onto the case without the use of thumbscrews, and to top all this off is its compact design for bundling shorter cables. The Pandora Window's near tool-free design complements its overall slick looks. All these features must be given props to, as BitFenix has really done a good job in this area. It is also nice that the company has made a case that is as full featured as possible, while being as small as it can be. Yet, I find a number of issues that BitFenix can improve on. Firstly, sharp corners could be found on the back edge. One possible solution is to integrate the back panel for a more user friendly and consistent design. Secondly, the space behind the motherboard tray is very limited, thus, when lots of cables are bundled in that area, the side panel tends to pop off. This can easily be resolved by either providing slightly more space behind the motherboard tray, or by shortening the length of the entire case to reduce tension created by shorter cables. Again, it is nice BitFenix tried to make the Pandora as small as possible, but I think they have overdone it slightly that it ruins the overall experience in the end. Lastly, I found that the software was straightforward, but did not keep the end user in mind, as it had no GUI. All in all, the BitFenix Pandora Window is a decent case given the features that it offers, but if BitFenix could tweak the issues as aforementioned, the Pandora Window would be truly outstanding in many ways -- because it already is quite exceptional in many regards.

With all this in mind, it is now time to close off the year with our last review of 2014. Happy New Year, everyone!

BitFenix provided this product to APH Networks for the purpose of evaluation.

APH Review Focus Summary:
8/10 means Definitely a very good product with drawbacks that aren't likely going to matter to the end user.
7/10 means Great product with many advantages and certain insignificant drawbacks; but should be considered before purchasing.
-- Final APH Numeric Rating is 7.2/10
Please note that the APH Numeric Rating system is based off our proprietary guidelines in the Review Focus, and should not be compared to other sites.

The BitFenix Pandora Window is a compact and slick looking mATX case with a cool programmable logo display in front to boot.

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Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Installation and Conclusion