Shogun Thermal Testing
BitFenix ships the Shogun with three plain 120mm fans (max: 1260RPM), adequate for cooling but nowhere near the capacity of the case (all three slots can fit 140mm fans, for a start). The default positioning is one exhaust fan in the rear and two intake fans in the front. Bizarrely, although BitFenix claims to support three 120mm fans or two 140mm fans in the front, we found the opposite--mounting holes were provided for two 140 or 120mm fans with an additional 140mm slot at the top (120mm fan could conceivably be mounted in this spot instead, but it would only be attached by two bottom screws). We have informed BitFenix of this and they have acknowledged the listing error and corrected it.
BitFenix Shogun – GPU Thermals
Let’s start with GPU thermals.
In our tests, the intake fans kept the GPU well-supplied with cool air for a respectable temperature of just under 52C delta T, but this cool air continued flowing out of the back of the case without touching the CPU. Comparatively, the Corsair 270R and In NZXT S340 Elite are just behind this performance.
BitFenix Shogun CPU Thermals
At the maximum 1260 RPM fan speed for the case fans, our CPU was running 61.74 degrees Celsius above ambient; not especially impressive, but unsurprising given the size and speed of the fans. This puts the Shogun below the toasty 66.18 dT that our recently-reviewed Pure Base 600 managed.
Adding a Corsair 140mm fan to the front intake array drove CPU temperatures down to 55.7C delta T, landing it ahead of the S340 Elite, Cullinan, and behind the Corsair cases. This is because the 140mm fan lands straight across from the CPU, creating a tunnel of airflow into and out of the tower cooler.
BitFenix Shogun Noise Levels
Moving on to noise testing, we see the stock Shogun with three fans performs about where the Corsair 570X sits, another case with 3x 120mm fans, when configured to 1050RPM. At the quieter speed of 1000RPM, the Shogun measures at 32.6dBA when containing our standardized test bench.
BitFenix Shogun Conclusion
The BitFenix Shogun feels like it was designed with the intention of making it worth your money. The extra features like the RGB shroud, VGA supports, and E-ATX shield aren’t necessary, but it’s reassuring to know that they’re there. Buyers should budget for at least one additional 140mm fan, and perhaps replacements for the stock 120mm fans as well (as they’re essentially placeholders), bringing the total package up into the $170-$180 range. The thick aluminum dust cover arches at the top and bottom represent the enclosure pretty well: sturdy, good-looking, and functional. For a flashy, high-end system that could benefit from a pane of tempered glass, the Shogun is a good choice.
The Shogun includes several semi-modular and fully modular features, useful for tuning the case specifically to your needs. Granted, this also means that you’re paying more and receiving more hardware as a result, so if the modular bays, PSU shroud, and VGA holders aren’t interesting to you, you’re going to be shelling out money for unused parts.
At $160, it’s really not bad pricing given the high-quality materials used and the relative ease of installation for the build process. The LEDs aren’t that impressive, if that matters to you, and despite high tooling quality, several screws are over-torqued to the point of causing cosmetic damage to the video card holders, but that is a relatively minor complaint overall.
Editorial, Testing: Patrick Lathan
Host, Test Lead: Steve Burke
Video Production: Andrew Coleman