From a simple glance at the case a seasoned enthusiast can tell what the P280 is all about. Antec designed a very simple and yet particularly elegant chassis, granting the product a serious, majestic appearance. It is interesting to note that the P280 is not black like most of Antec’s Performance One cases but the chassis is sprayed with a dark grey color while the faceplate is aluminum silver. Despite the inconspicuous design the P280 is a sizable case, measuring 52.5cm high, 56cm deep and 23cm wide.
The silvery faceplate of the P280 is almost entirely plain, with the exception of the company’s logo subtly engraved towards the bottom of the case. Even though the front side of the door is covered by an aluminum sheet, the main body of the door is made out of hard plastic. There are no ventilation holes or any openings, obviously in order to maximize the case’s thermal performance. What is interesting however is that there are no ventilation holes at the sides of the faceplate either; Antec’s engineers designed the front panel so that the front intake fan will draw in air from the bottom of the case.
Antec placed the power on and reset buttons at the top of the case, near the faceplate. The otherwise simplistic round buttons appear to be well made and of high quality. Near the top of the faceplate the company installed all of the front I/O connectors; the standard headphone 3.5mm jacks, two USB 2.0 ports and two USB 3.0 ports. There is no eSATA or a firewire port, an omission most users will not care about since USB 3.0 is by far the most common interface for high speed transfers today, yet it might trouble users who already own a sensible number of eSATA and/or firewire based hardware.
Opening up the front panel door reveals the three 5.25” device slots and a massive dust filter. The dust filter is easily removable and cleanable for regular maintenance. A quality sound dampening material (foam) can be seen covering every inch of the door’s inside.