The fans proved to be fairly powerful, and while this meant a decent amount of airflow, it also resulted in there being a reasonable amount of noise too. That's worth bearing in mind given you can't alter the fan speed. With a powerful fan nestled so closely behind the CPU cooler, it wasn't surprising to see the CPU delta T being the second best we've seen at 50°C, no doubt helped by having three front fans, a partially ventilated front panel, and a large vent in the roof too.
The GPU delta T wasn't quite as good, probably due to the front vent only occupying around a third of the overall surface, plus the middle front fan sits more level and above the GPU rather than pointing airflow towards the area of the radial blower fan on our test card. Had it sat two or three inches lower, we'd perhaps have seen a sub-50°C result here. The lower fan is too low to be of great use, directing most of its airflow into the PSU cover. A result of 53°C is reasonable, but we expected better here, and the fixed front fan mounts mean you sadly can't adjust their position for better alignment.
The Kolink Phalanx definitely gives you a lot of case for your money, as it offers solid cooling - exceptional where CPU air coolers are concerned - plus attractive lighting, a glass side panel, four RGB fans, plenty of water-cooling possibilities, and solid build quality all for just £80.
There are niggles, though, such as meagre cable routing and tidying options, the flimsy PSU filter, and the front mesh potentially not dealing with dust quite as effectively as the denser filters in the roof and base. The kicker for us, however, is the inability to alter the fan speed, especially as they're not quiet. We would happily lose a few RGB colour options even just to have high and low speed settings.
If you're not too fussed about average noise levels, RGB lovers are getting a bit of a bargain here, and the Phalanx strikes a mostly good balance with the rest of its features and design too. Sadly, though, the fan control issue is a sticking point and means the Phalanx misses out on award territory.
January 24 2020 | 12:00