Subject: General Tech | June 3, 2013 - 01:28 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: SFF, m8, Lan Box, computex 2013, case, bmw, asrock
New PC cases seem to be popular at Computex this year, and ASRock may have just blown away the small form factor competition with its compact BMW Group-designed “M8” chassis.
The new “M8” case was designed by a BMW Group consultancy firm called DesignworksUSA. They have created a compact metal case that will be right at home at a LAN party or on many enthusiasts' desks. The case is a large square with cut-off corners and indented side panels. It is designed to show off the PC internals with a large octagonal side window, and can be stood upright or laid out horizontally. Carrying handles are integrated into the corners as well, making it easier to carry to LAN parties. The front of the case includes the “A-Command” button which is basically a large home theater-style volume control dial with an integrated OLED screen. The dial can adjust audio volume and fan speeds while the OLED display reports on system temperature, time, and usage (presumably HDD or CPU activity indicators).
The case has a rather clean and sharp look that shows a bare metal side and a glossy black front panel. The BMW Group has added red accents to the front panel and side windows. In an interesting twist, according to the press release, the side panels are magnetic which enables easy access to the internals.
The small form factor (SFF) M8 case will be used by ASRock to create a custom gaming PC. The internal specifications have not yet been announced, however.
This is definitely a unique design that is likely to be popular among the enthusiast and gamer crowd. You can find more photos of the M8 case on the BMW Group website.
What do you think of this BMW-inspired PC chassis?
Subject: Cases and Cooling | June 2, 2013 - 12:07 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: nzxt, mid tower, h230, computex 2013, case
NZXT has kicked off the Computex 2013 coverage with the announcement of a new H230 mid-tower ATX case. Continuing the tradition of the H-series, the H230 is a minimalistic white or black design that incorporates sound dampening material and tool-free internal bays.
The outside of the case is simplistic, with vents and three 5.25” bays on the front. In keeping with the silent intentions, there is no case window here. Brushed aluminum case feet lift the case off of the floor. Two USB 3.0 ports and a single microphone audio jack are available as front IO.
The H230 is constructed of steel with some plastic parts. It measures 195mm x 447mm x 502mm and weighs 7.25kg (approximately 16 lbs.). There are two SKUs, CA-H230I-W1 in white and CA-H230I-B1 in black.
Internally, the H230 mid tower case features tool free drive bays that can accommodate up to 6 3.5” drives and 3 5.25” drives. It can fit GPUs up to 290mm in length with the hard drive cage installed or up to 400mm with the drive cage removed. Heatsinks up to 158mm in height are supported as are motherboards up to full ATX in size (with 7 PCI expansion slots). A bottom mounted PSU slot and cable management routed behind the motherboard tray are also features. Cooling options include up to two 120mm front intake fans, a single 120mm bottom intake fan, and a single 120mm rear exhaust fan. NZXT provides the 120mm exhaust fan with the case. In the press release, NZXT states that “Our designers had one goal in mind while crafting the H230: create an affordable, silent chassis with all of the necessary essentials for a clean, functional build. ”
The new H230 case comes with a 2-year warranty and has an MSRP of $69.99. More information is available on the H230 product page.
The full press release is below:
Subject: General Tech | May 22, 2013 - 06:27 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: fractal design, mini-itx, case, Node 304
Fractal Design is launching a new version of its existing Node 304 computer chassis. The new Node 304 White comes in white and supports Mini-ITX motherboards. The case measures 250 x 210 x 374mm and weighs 4.9kg.
The Node 304 is constructed of aluminum and has a white painted exterior. There are two mesh air vents on either side of the case as well as two 92mm Silent Series R2 fans working as front intakes behind filters to keep dust out of the case. Front IO includes two USB 3.0 ports and two audio jacks. The rear of the case features two expansion slots, a space for an ATX power supply, and a single 140mm Silent Series R2 exhaust fan.
Internally, the Node 304 White can fit standard ATX power supplies, a Mini-ITX motherboard, and up to six 3.5" or 2.5" hard drives. Alternatively, with two of the hard drive mounts removed, the case can accommodate graphics cards up to 310mm in length.
It is a minimalist design,but one that works well. Airflow should not be a problem even for high-end components, and the inclusion of the three fans, filters, and a fan controller is nice to see. The case will be available in July with an MSRP of $89.90 in the US and 69.90 EURO in Europe.
Subject: General Tech, Cases and Cooling | May 14, 2013 - 03:20 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Lian Li, PC -Q30, mini ITX, case
Lian Li has just released a very unique case for those who want to show off their internal components, the PC-Q30. The unique curved chassis will certainly make your system stand out as no other competitor is offering a case with this particular look. It is mini-ITX so their are some space constraints for the highest end systems but you can still fit a good system into the (W)223mm x (H)357mm x (D)300mm chassis.
May 14, 2013, Keelung, Taiwan - Lian-Li Industrial Co. Ltd, today announces a new brushed aluminum Mini-ITX chassis – PC-Q30. With its curve-shaped design and large acrylic front window the fully aluminum PC-Q30 allows users to show off their systems, and is sure to be the talking piece of any room.
Whether in the living room, bedroom, or office, the PC-Q30 with its curve-shape and brushed aluminium finish takes visual command without being ostentatious. Additionally, DIY builders can put their stylized internal components and intricate builds on full display – as they should not be hidden from sight.
Thanks to the two expansion slots on the top of the chassis, the PC-Q30 supports graphics cards up to 200mm (7.8”). For storage, up to four 2.5” hard drives or SSDs can be mounted in the removable hard drive cage at the bottom of the chassis.
A 140mm fan in the rear of the chassis expels hot air, while ventilation on the top and side allows for cool air to enter. A small form factor power supply up to 125mm (4.9”) is placed on rubber pads in order to reduce vibrations.
The front of the PC-Q30 is minimalistic in aesthetics and houses the dual LED illuminated power button that glows blue when on and red while loading. The I/O panel with two USB 3.0 ports and HD audio connections is located on the left side of the front of the chassis to not interrupt the elegant aesthetics.
Price and Availability
The PC-Q30 will be available in June in the US and Canada for the suggested retail price of US$149
Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 8, 2013 - 01:46 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ultra tower, nzxt, h630, grid hub, case
NZXT has unleashed a monstrous new PC case onto the tech world with the H630 Ultra Tower. The new chassis is constructed of powder coated steel and ABS plastic. It can accommodate XL-ATX motherboards, two 360mm radiators, 8 hard drives, and a bunch of fans within its sound dampened interior. The H630 case weighs approximately 31 pounds and measures 547 x 245 x 567mm (HxWxD).
On the outside, the NZXT features a glossy white or black powder coated finish. You will not find any case windows or bling, but the design is clean and simple. It offers filtered fan intakes and an IO panel located on the right side with two USB 2.0, two USB 3.0, and two audio ports as well as a SDXC card slot. Two 5.25” drive bays adorn the top-front of the case.
The inside of the case is rather spacious with an optical drive bay, three removable hard drive bays, an opening for a bottom mounted PSU, and a large motherboard tray that can hold boards up to XL-ATX in size. Water cooling enthusiasts will be pleased to know that they can mount a 360mm radiator in the top and front of the case, which is a pretty impressive feat without needing to use an externally-mounted rad (like I had to with my case). If you opt for additional air cooling, you can further fit two 140mm fans in the bottom of the case, one 140mm case in the HDD cage, and one 140mm case in the rear of the case. Needless to say, that’s a lot of cooling options!
NZXT has also outfitted the H630 with sound dampening material, which should help to soften the noise of all the hardware enthusiasts are likely to pack into the case--though I would wait for reviews to see how well the material works. Additionally, the H630 has 9 expansion slots, cable routing holes, the company's 10-port Grid fan hub, and two 2.5” SSD mounts hidden behind the motherboard tray.
The new H630 Ultra Tower should be available in the US for around $150 by the end of May and in the UK for £129.05 sometime in June. For the price, it seems like an impressive deal. I’m tempted, though I’m not sure if it will fit under my desk. You can find more photos and specifications on this NZXT product page.
Subject: General Tech, Cases and Cooling | March 21, 2013 - 01:52 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: galileo, newton, akasa, nuc, case, thin mini-itx
FanlessTech recently spotted two new fan-less and small form factor cases from Akasa ahead of the official launch. The Akasa Galileo and Akasa Newton are compatible with thin Mini-ITX and Intel's Next Unit of Computing (NUC) motherboards respectively.
Both cases are constructed of aluminum, have VESA mounting holes, and double as a fan-less heatsink for your components. The Galileo is 37mm thick and can cool processors rated up to a 35W TDP. The Newton is a small case with fins around the sides to increase surface area (for better cooling capability), and aesthetic flair.
According to Fanless Tech, the two PC cases will be officially unveiled at Computex in Taipei, Taiwan this summer. There is no word on pricing or when they will be available for purchase, however.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | March 3, 2013 - 10:53 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: thermaltake, mid tower, case, atx
Thermaltake has released a new mid tower chassis aimed at enthusiasts favoring minimalist designs. Constructed of SECC (Steel, Electrogalvanized, ColdRolled, Coil) steel, the Thermaltake Urban S21 supports ATX motherboards, high-end graphics cards, and both air and water cooling options. It measures 17.2” x 7.5” x 19.6”.
The new chassis is all black and features a brushed metal design on the front panel. The brushed metal front door hides the externally-accessible drives. At the top of the front panel, the case features two USB 3.0 ports and two audio jacks. A power LED along with both power and reset button adorns the top-edge of the case. The side panel has space for one 120mm fan as well as a clear window above it that is about the size of a 120mm fan. Four large case feet hold the mid tower above the floor, allowing the PSU intake and an (optional) additional 120mm fan to bring cool air into the case.
Thermaltake includes two 120mm fans, but the case itself can support a maximum of five 120mm fans. The Urban S21 case interior features tool-less drive bays for up to six hard drives and three optical drives. Further, it has cable management holes, water cooling grommets, a bottom-mounted power supply, and a CPU cutout.
Thermaltake’s Urban S21 case looks good and has a decent feature set. The case will reportedly go on sale sometime this month, but the company has not yet announced pricing. Here’s hoping the price is right as it is looking like a nice mid-tower case so far! You can find more specifications on the Urban S21 on this product page.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 3, 2013 - 06:14 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: tranquil, nuc, fanless, case
Tranquil PC, a case manufacturer and system integrator based in the UK, recently announced a new aluminum chassis for Intel’s NUC motherboards. The new chassis acts as a heatsink and will keep your NUC system running cool without needing case fans. Tranquil is offering two versions of the case – the NUC-BY and NUC-YE – which are compatible with both the D33217CK (Thunderbolt-equipped) and D33217GKE (Gigabit Ethernet-equipped) Intel NUC boards respectively.
The two Tranquil NUC cases are nearly identical, but they differ in the IO cutouts offered (naturally). The cases measure 110 x 164 x 47mm and resembles a black heatsink with its horizontal fins and brushed aluminum design. The chassis is reportedly able to keep the Next Unit of Computing (NUC) system 5 to 15 degrees centigrade cooler than the reference Intel NUC case that uses an active fan. Hopefully, the case-as-a-heatsink design will help to mitigate the overheating problems that many reviewers (including PC Perspective) have run into when performing network transfers to the SSD over Wi-Fi.
It is a streamlined design with port only the expected port cutouts and a rubberized power button on the rear of the device. No LED-lit logos or extra buttons to speak of. You can, however, have Tranquil laser-engrave a custom message onto the chassis for an additional fee.
The front of the case features a single USB port while the rear IO will depend on your particular NUC board. The D33217CK board includes one Thunderbolt, one HDMI, two USB 2.0 ports, and a 65W DC power input jack. On the other hand, the D33217GKE motherboard has a DC-in jack, two USB 2.0 ports, two HDMI outputs, and a single Gigabit LAN jack. Additionally, the Tranquil cases have a cutout for an externally-mounted Wi-Fi antenna (as the aluminum casing is not well-suited to housing an internal antenna).
Both Tranquil NUC cases are available now for a base price of £99. A VESA mount adds an additional £17. Further, VAT and shipping charges may apply depending on where you are ordering from. In USD, the Tranquil cases have a base price of $155.62. While I do not get charged VAT, I do have to pay shipping, and it is not cheap at approximately $33 to ship to the mid-west US. In my case, ordering one NUC case and having it shipped to Illinois would cost $207.41. Ouch.
The Tranquil PC NUC case with its brushed aluminum and fanless design is extremely nice. Unfortunately, that build quality does not come cheap, and will add to the overall cost of putting together your NUC system. If you have the money for it though, it looks to be one of the best cases available for the new 4” x 4” NUC motherboards.
More information is available on the Tranquil PC website.
Introduction and Technical Specifications
Courtesy of Thermaltake
As the newest member of Thermaltake's Armor Revo case line, the Armor Revo Gene mid-tower case features sleek looks and exudes the humble power that only the war-worn warrior's know. We decided to put the Armor Revo Gene to the test to see how well the case works under a variety of circumstances. At a base price of $129.99, the Armor Revo Gene seems to be a well priced steal for the features designed into it.
Courtesy of Thermaltake
Courtesy of Thermaltake
The Armor Revo Gene features a flat-black, scratch-resistant coating on all surfaces, giving it a sleek and uniformly menacing look. The case's right panel contains a window in it upper half to show off your case innards, bisected by a grilled space for up to a 200mm side fan to help cool your PCI-Express cards. A wing-shaped aluminum front bezel helps to direct air through the front of the case in an optimal manner.
Quick look at a low cost Carbide
Corsair continues its push into the case markets with yet another option, the Carbide 200R, bringing the price of entry down to sub-$50. Currently selling on Newegg.com for $45 with a coupon code, check out this quick video walkthrough of the latest case from Corsair!
After spending a bit more time with the case I can tell that for the price, the 200R is a pretty solid option. I am not a fan of the 2.5-in drive arrangement that puts the power and data cables out into the case rather than towards the back (like the 3.5-in drives have) just from a cleanliness point of view, but that's somewhat minor. Also worth noting is that even though we have a $50, and very light chassis, there aren't any sharp edges to cut you; Corsair did a good job rounding off the edges and having the metal fold back for a safe environment.
There are a TON of case options in the price range so it might be hard for the Carbide 200R to stand out with a simple Newegg/Amazon search, but I think the Corsair brand will help sift it to the top.