Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Computer Cases › mATX case choice; narrowed down to 3
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

mATX case choice; narrowed down to 3

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Been doing research for a week now on different mATX cases. Originally wanted one of the Lian Li PC-V600F series, but reviews claim that the top fan blocks an 8-pin power and it has a high price tag.

What I want in a case (I am a bit picky): All black exterior (including rear), mostly black interior (at least the walls of the case), Full/mid tower cooling setup (intake bottom/front exhaust top/rear) would be preferred, fits a 160mm heatsink (getting a Noctua NH-D14, willing to swap with the C14 if it works better with the case), decent sleek look, low case weight (not a huge deal, but I would like to be able to carry it with one hand), finally I would like a price under $150

After too much research, I have narrowed my list of choices to 3:
Fractal Design Arc Mini
Pros:
+ Sleek
+ Mostly black
+ Neutral color fans
+ Lots of vents for fan additions
+ Removable hard drive bay to fit larger graphics cards
+ Fits up to 165mm heatsinks
+ Hard drive bay and expansions slots are actually painted white, not just bare metal
Cons:
- Weight
- Price

In Win Dragon Slater
Pros:
+ Tools free
+ Cable routing
+ Price
+ Full black interior
+ Fits full size graphics cards
+ Tons of fans
Cons:
- Does not fit a 160mm heatsink, would use the C14 with the side panel design anyway
- Not on their website
- Fans are nasty colors
- Design is a bit outlandish, but not terrible
- Too many protrusions leaving it lumpy to carry

Silverstone TJ08-e
Pros:
+ Heatsink fans act as exhaust
+ Wider than the other mATX cases
+ Weight
+ All black
+ Sleek design
+ Due to lack of vents, only 1 way for dust to get in which is the filter in the front
+ Fits 160mm heatsinks
Cons:
- Even though the front fan is an AP181, I fear that there would not be enough airflow, especially since there are no vents other than the PSU hole on the top (physics)
- RUMOR: I heard that top mount PSU's make cable management a pain
- Screws for side panel, can't tell if they are thumb screws or not
- Price
- Heard that graphics cards are choked for air with the single fan design
-/+ upside down design, still don't know if that is good or bad

Looking for opinions and experiences people have had with these cases. I will take other recommendations at this point if they fit my outline.
Edited by Chunkylad - 7/31/11 at 10:23am
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 25
Arc Mini is a great case. Im very happy with mine. The only thing to complain about is the tiny gap to route cables. And by the way. Screws for the side panels is actually thumb screws wink.gif
Updated Arc
(19 items)
 
Lenovo E330
(8 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Xeon E3-1270V3 GA-Z87X-UD4H Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC R2 Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC R2 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Corsiar Vengeance Pro 1866 - 2x8GB Samsung 840 EVO 250GB Plextor M3 Pro 128GB Western Digital Red 3TB 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
CPU: Corsair H100 w/ 2x GT AP-15's fans Windows 8.1 Pro w/ Start is Back BenQ XL2420T Samsung XL2730 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Duckie Shine 2 - MX Red Corsair AX750 Fractal Design - Arc Midi R2 Zowie AM 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Steelseries QCK Mass Fiio E09K + Beyer Dynamic DT-770 pro's + Antli... Speakers: Argon 7460  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3210m@2.5Ghz ~3.1Ghz Turbo Lenovo HM77 GT 610m Kingston value pc3-12800 cl11 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Crucial m4 - 128gb + Sandisk 16gb mSATA  Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 13.3 LED - 1366x768 90W 
  hide details  
Reply
Updated Arc
(19 items)
 
Lenovo E330
(8 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Xeon E3-1270V3 GA-Z87X-UD4H Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC R2 Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC R2 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Corsiar Vengeance Pro 1866 - 2x8GB Samsung 840 EVO 250GB Plextor M3 Pro 128GB Western Digital Red 3TB 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
CPU: Corsair H100 w/ 2x GT AP-15's fans Windows 8.1 Pro w/ Start is Back BenQ XL2420T Samsung XL2730 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Duckie Shine 2 - MX Red Corsair AX750 Fractal Design - Arc Midi R2 Zowie AM 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Steelseries QCK Mass Fiio E09K + Beyer Dynamic DT-770 pro's + Antli... Speakers: Argon 7460  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3210m@2.5Ghz ~3.1Ghz Turbo Lenovo HM77 GT 610m Kingston value pc3-12800 cl11 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Crucial m4 - 128gb + Sandisk 16gb mSATA  Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 13.3 LED - 1366x768 90W 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoctorNick;14413506 
Arc Mini is a great case. Im very happy with mine. The only thing to complain about is the tiny gap to route cables. And by the way. Screws for the side panels is actually thumb screws wink.gif

It looked like normal screws from the pics, thanks for the correction!
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
post #4 of 25
Thread Starter 
Bump as people are going to be useless and I need to get my new rig started.
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 25
Have you looked at the NZXT Vulcan?

I would reccomend it simply on the premise that it has a handle (It's incredible, dont doubt the usefulness of being able to carry around a computer like a breifcase)

It's fairly priced and has a unique apperance, not to mention decent cable management, plenty of fan slots, water cooling holes and all the goodies a case should have.
Lan Master 2.0
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570k ASUS P8Z77-M Asus GTX 670 Patriot 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
OZC Agility 4 WD Blue 500gb Coolermaster Hyper TX3 Win 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung S23700D Das Keyboard Ultimate Silent Corsair CX600 NZXT Vulcan 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX-518 Razer Goliathus Control Asus Essence ST 
  hide details  
Reply
Lan Master 2.0
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570k ASUS P8Z77-M Asus GTX 670 Patriot 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
OZC Agility 4 WD Blue 500gb Coolermaster Hyper TX3 Win 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung S23700D Das Keyboard Ultimate Silent Corsair CX600 NZXT Vulcan 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX-518 Razer Goliathus Control Asus Essence ST 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 25
The dragon slayer doesn't look as micro to me. Looks more like a mid tower.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Xeon e5520 DX58SO Radeon 7850 3x2gb OCZ Gold 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
1tb Hitachi Deskstar 7200rpm CoolerMaster N520 Windows 7 Home Premium x64 Westinghouse 22" 1680x1050 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Earthwatts EA-500 500w Thermaltake WingRS Steelseries Sensei RAW HT Omega Striker 7.1 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Xeon e5520 DX58SO Radeon 7850 3x2gb OCZ Gold 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
1tb Hitachi Deskstar 7200rpm CoolerMaster N520 Windows 7 Home Premium x64 Westinghouse 22" 1680x1050 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Earthwatts EA-500 500w Thermaltake WingRS Steelseries Sensei RAW HT Omega Striker 7.1 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 25
In the Arc Min.
If dumping one of the HDD bay is an easy no brainier wink.gif , that case seems to be one of the best designs overall in that size I've ever seen!

Multiple precut holes for cable routing
And I'm partial to the bottom PS config.


Simply a sweet looking and well laid out design IMHO.
Edited by The Duke - 7/31/11 at 11:32am
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
X4 965 ASUS M4A79 Deluxe 9800GTx2 2x2G OCZ Reapers 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
500G WD Black LiteOn CD/DVD R/W Win7 64 22'' ws Acer AL2223W 
KeyboardPowerMouse
MS KU462 Natural SS DA750 MS 5 button 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
X4 965 ASUS M4A79 Deluxe 9800GTx2 2x2G OCZ Reapers 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
500G WD Black LiteOn CD/DVD R/W Win7 64 22'' ws Acer AL2223W 
KeyboardPowerMouse
MS KU462 Natural SS DA750 MS 5 button 
  hide details  
Reply
post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThirtySixNights;14414631 
Have you looked at the NZXT Vulcan?

I would reccomend it simply on the premise that it has a handle (It's incredible, dont doubt the usefulness of being able to carry around a computer like a breifcase)

It's fairly priced and has a unique apperance, not to mention decent cable management, plenty of fan slots, water cooling holes and all the goodies a case should have.

I have indeed looked at the Vulcan and heard that it is a marvelous case for the price, but the design is just a bit clunky for me. A handle would be nice, but I feel that any case with a handle just looks a bit unprofessional. I love my 800D just because it is 100% black and it is so smooth. I am not big on my friend's Haf 932 since it has all the dips and juts and designs. I am making a trip to microcenter soon for my processor and they have a Vulcan so maybe I will check it out then to see if it looks different in person than it does in pictures.
Quote:
Originally Posted by daydream99;14414724 
The dragon slayer doesn't look as micro to me. Looks more like a mid tower.

It is large for a micro tower. It has an so many options with the face plate.
Quote:
Dragon Slayer supports up to three external 5.25” drive bays, one external 3.5” drive bay and one internal 2.5” drive bay or convert two 5.25” drive bays into three 3.5” drive bays via HDD bracket.

I am only using 1 hard drive so removing a bay is highly likely. Modular is good smile.gif
Edited by Chunkylad - 7/31/11 at 11:35am
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
post #9 of 25
I would go for the ARC mini in that case then.

i%20see%20what%20you%20did%20there%202.png?1299910878
Lan Master 2.0
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570k ASUS P8Z77-M Asus GTX 670 Patriot 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
OZC Agility 4 WD Blue 500gb Coolermaster Hyper TX3 Win 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung S23700D Das Keyboard Ultimate Silent Corsair CX600 NZXT Vulcan 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX-518 Razer Goliathus Control Asus Essence ST 
  hide details  
Reply
Lan Master 2.0
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 3570k ASUS P8Z77-M Asus GTX 670 Patriot 2133mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
OZC Agility 4 WD Blue 500gb Coolermaster Hyper TX3 Win 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung S23700D Das Keyboard Ultimate Silent Corsair CX600 NZXT Vulcan 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX-518 Razer Goliathus Control Asus Essence ST 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThirtySixNights;14414785 
I would go for the ARC mini in that case then.

i%20see%20what%20you%20did%20there%202.png?1299910878

img-thing?.out=jpg&size=l&tid=30926465


I had never heard of Fractal until I started researching cases, seems like they are more popular than I previously though. Although everyone does recommend the Vulcan first.
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
Project Purity
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750 EVGA P55 FTW 200 EVGA GTX 480 Corsair Dominator GT 4Gb x 2 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
2x500gb Spinpoint F3 (Raid 0)/1tb Spinpoint F3 Asus DRW Heatkiller 3.0 XSPC EX360 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Swiftech MCP655 EK GTX 480 Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Samsung UN32C6500 32" LED TV 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Steelseries Merc Stealth Corsair HX1000W Corsair Obsidian 800d Razer Mamba 
Mouse PadAudio
Razer Destructor Asus Xonar DX 
  hide details  
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Cases
Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Computer Cases › mATX case choice; narrowed down to 3