Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Computer Cases › mini tower? Mid tower? Full tower? Whats the difference?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

mini tower? Mid tower? Full tower? Whats the difference?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Sup fellow overclockers!
Im planning on building my next rig as it will be my first time so please bare with me because Im really new to all this. Im looking at all sorts of parts and hardware but I'd like to get a good understanding of everything before I jump right into it. Is there a significant difference between mini, mid and full towers apart from their sizes?

FYI: I want to build an uber gaming rig so what kinda tower would you guys recommend?

THANKS IN ADVANCE!
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i5-750 GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD3 Sapphire 5870 2GB Eyefinity 6 edn. G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
x2 OCZ Agility 2 60GB FW1.1 + Seagate 640GB ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Windows 7 Home premium 64-bit DELL U2410 IPS rev. A01 1920x1200 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G11 CORSAIR 750TX HAF 932 DELL 
Mouse Pad
none 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i5-750 GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD3 Sapphire 5870 2GB Eyefinity 6 edn. G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
x2 OCZ Agility 2 60GB FW1.1 + Seagate 640GB ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Windows 7 Home premium 64-bit DELL U2410 IPS rev. A01 1920x1200 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G11 CORSAIR 750TX HAF 932 DELL 
Mouse Pad
none 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 10
The difference between them is size. Mini towers are very small and only microATX motherboard's will fit. Mid towers are the most common, and any motherboard will fit inside. Full towers are the biggest and in my opinion they're the best. You have the most room for working on the computer and you can get the best airflow. I'd go with a full tower if I were you. Look into the Thermaltake Armor, it's a very nice case!
Main Gaming Rig
(14 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
2500K 4.8ghz Asus P8P67 Deluxe Sapphire 7970 1200/1600 8GB GSKILL SNIPER 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
128GB OCZ Vertex 4 LG 24X SATA Windows 7 Pro x64 Dell 22/24/22 LCDs 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G110 Toughpower 1000watt 108A Corsair 800D Logitech G700 
Mouse PadAudio
SteelSeries QCK+ XFI XtremeMusic 
  hide details  
Reply
Main Gaming Rig
(14 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
2500K 4.8ghz Asus P8P67 Deluxe Sapphire 7970 1200/1600 8GB GSKILL SNIPER 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
128GB OCZ Vertex 4 LG 24X SATA Windows 7 Pro x64 Dell 22/24/22 LCDs 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G110 Toughpower 1000watt 108A Corsair 800D Logitech G700 
Mouse PadAudio
SteelSeries QCK+ XFI XtremeMusic 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 10
I havent seen a mid tower fit a eatx
I agree with val, full towers are your best bet unless your space concious in your home, they can get big
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AM2 5200+x2 EPoX MF570SLI ATI X1900XT 512mb 2x1gb G.Skill DDR2-800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD2500KS Windows XP pro 21'' Dell Trinitron P1130 Generic Micro innovations brand 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Sunbeam Nuuo 550W Cooler Master CM690 MX-518 Fellowes Microban Blackness 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AM2 5200+x2 EPoX MF570SLI ATI X1900XT 512mb 2x1gb G.Skill DDR2-800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD2500KS Windows XP pro 21'' Dell Trinitron P1130 Generic Micro innovations brand 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Sunbeam Nuuo 550W Cooler Master CM690 MX-518 Fellowes Microban Blackness 
  hide details  
Reply
post #4 of 10
A full tower is the best solution, as you have more space, they look cooler, and in some of them you can fit two CPUs.
However they're not reccomended for LAN parties...
15s
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Athlon II x4 640 Gigabyte 880GM-D2H AMD HD4250 4 GB 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
640GB Arch GNU/Linux i686 Fujitsu Siemens 4612 FA 350 W 
Mouse
Logitech G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
15s
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Athlon II x4 640 Gigabyte 880GM-D2H AMD HD4250 4 GB 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
640GB Arch GNU/Linux i686 Fujitsu Siemens 4612 FA 350 W 
Mouse
Logitech G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 10
Full tower is the best. But...a BIG mid-tower is alright too.

It's all about airflow, and room for stuff/working.
Desktop
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD FX 8120 Gigabyte XA990-UD3 Gigabyte GTX670 Windforce III G. Skill RipJaws 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Crucial M4 Western Digital Blue LG Dual Layer Sata Antec Kuhler 920 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 8 Dell 2007wfp 20.1" Logitech G710+ Corsair Professional HX650 
CaseMouseMouse Pad
Coolermaster Silencio Steelseries Sensei [RAW] Func F10.s 
  hide details  
Reply
Desktop
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD FX 8120 Gigabyte XA990-UD3 Gigabyte GTX670 Windforce III G. Skill RipJaws 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Crucial M4 Western Digital Blue LG Dual Layer Sata Antec Kuhler 920 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 8 Dell 2007wfp 20.1" Logitech G710+ Corsair Professional HX650 
CaseMouseMouse Pad
Coolermaster Silencio Steelseries Sensei [RAW] Func F10.s 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 10
Full towers are best if you need the space.
They are too big for me. To me they don't look good.
The most 5.5" external drives I have ever needed was 3.
I like Mids better. I get good airflow.
Minis are good if you aren't overclocking too much since they only take MATX boards.
Just make sure the case you want can handle ATX boards so you can get some choices in boards.
My Rig
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core2 Quad Q6600 @3.2Ghz Asus PK5 Deluxe WiFi Gigabyte Silencer 7600GT Geil 2 x1GB 1066 PC8500 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD 2x250GB Raid0 and 1 500Gb Samsung DVD RAM, lightscribe XP Pro SP3, Vista Home Premium SP1 Hanns G 22 LCD, Gateway 15 LCD 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech PC Power and Cooling Silencer 750 Thermaltake Armor Jr Logitech 
Mouse Pad
Belkin 
  hide details  
Reply
My Rig
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core2 Quad Q6600 @3.2Ghz Asus PK5 Deluxe WiFi Gigabyte Silencer 7600GT Geil 2 x1GB 1066 PC8500 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD 2x250GB Raid0 and 1 500Gb Samsung DVD RAM, lightscribe XP Pro SP3, Vista Home Premium SP1 Hanns G 22 LCD, Gateway 15 LCD 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech PC Power and Cooling Silencer 750 Thermaltake Armor Jr Logitech 
Mouse Pad
Belkin 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 10
Welcome!

As stated earlier, the difference is in size and what boards to fit. Mini's will not fit regular ATX, only micro ATX, and this is usually specified in the product description. Most frag boxes come with their own mobo (e.g. shuttle), but there are some that will fit micro boards (ASUS makes one my friend uses).

I would reccommend getting a Mid-Tower, most have (4) 5.25 bays, and (2) 2.5 bays (I believe that is the size, but 2 bays for floppy sized devices) On the outside, and even more on the inside for your HDD's.

I have a full tower, and just because it is huge does NOT mean it is effective.. my new case (Lian-Li PC60APLUSII) is actually on par with my ThermalTake XaserII case. For comparision, the Lian-Li boasts a 120mm intake, 120mm exhaust, 80mm intake and 80mm exhaust or four case fans and is relatively quiet. My TT has 7 total case fans, 3x intake and 4x exhaust, all 80mm, and is rather loud and heavy. Both are aluminum and while both are excellent cases (IMO) I would get a mid if you plan to LAN.

The other thing I dislike about full towers is the amount of cables that get messy. I had to start stretching my PSU cables diagnolally to fit, while in the mid I can hide them a lot easier. Look around at different cases, a good case is a good investment. I would highly recommend getting aluminum over steel because of heat dispertion and weight. Find a case that fits your budget and style, then google reviews on it. Get a couple and weigh them all out. Feel free to even ask questions here about different cases.

Hope that helps.
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardOSMonitor
PIII 450MHZ IBM Stock WinXP SP2 BenQ FP91G+ 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
MS Keyboard w/ USB Hub Stock IBM Micro ATX Logitech..Optical, Corded 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardOSMonitor
PIII 450MHZ IBM Stock WinXP SP2 BenQ FP91G+ 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
MS Keyboard w/ USB Hub Stock IBM Micro ATX Logitech..Optical, Corded 
  hide details  
Reply
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by idiq
Welcome!

As stated earlier, the difference is in size and what boards to fit. Mini's will not fit regular ATX, only micro ATX, and this is usually specified in the product description. Most frag boxes come with their own mobo (e.g. shuttle), but there are some that will fit micro boards (ASUS makes one my friend uses).

I would reccommend getting a Mid-Tower, most have (4) 5.25 bays, and (2) 2.5 bays (I believe that is the size, but 2 bays for floppy sized devices) On the outside, and even more on the inside for your HDD's.

I have a full tower, and just because it is huge does NOT mean it is effective.. my new case (Lian-Li PC60APLUSII) is actually on par with my ThermalTake XaserII case. For comparision, the Lian-Li boasts a 120mm intake, 120mm exhaust, 80mm intake and 80mm exhaust or four case fans and is relatively quiet. My TT has 7 total case fans, 3x intake and 4x exhaust, all 80mm, and is rather loud and heavy. Both are aluminum and while both are excellent cases (IMO) I would get a mid if you plan to LAN.

The other thing I dislike about full towers is the amount of cables that get messy. I had to start stretching my PSU cables diagnolally to fit, while in the mid I can hide them a lot easier. Look around at different cases, a good case is a good investment. I would highly recommend getting aluminum over steel because of heat dispertion and weight. Find a case that fits your budget and style, then google reviews on it. Get a couple and weigh them all out. Feel free to even ask questions here about different cases.

Hope that helps.
Well that's because the Xaser II is kinda old and outdated. I used a nice Lian Li for my dad's build, and my Armor is bigger, tougher, quieter, moves more air, and I think it's higher quality.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Namrac
Well that's because the Xaser II is kinda old and outdated. I used a nice Lian Li for my dad's build, and my Armor is bigger, tougher, quieter, moves more air, and I think it's higher quality.
I was trying to make the point more along the lines that bigger isn't always better. That's why I suggested finding a case that you like, googling some reviews and asking opinions of it on here.

I still say get a mid if you're going to transport it a lot.
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardOSMonitor
PIII 450MHZ IBM Stock WinXP SP2 BenQ FP91G+ 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
MS Keyboard w/ USB Hub Stock IBM Micro ATX Logitech..Optical, Corded 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardOSMonitor
PIII 450MHZ IBM Stock WinXP SP2 BenQ FP91G+ 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
MS Keyboard w/ USB Hub Stock IBM Micro ATX Logitech..Optical, Corded 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for everyones input. I will not be transporting my case a lot and will be water cooling the rig so I think it's best that I go with a full tower case. This rig is gonna be strictly for gaming and I am aiming to install the latest and greatest hardware for DX10. That's what I am really waiting for. Even though the PERFECT(after service packs n updates) VISTA may be a year away, I like to hear everyones suggestions. It let's me think "outside the box"

THANKS AGAIN MY FELLOW OVERCLOCKERS!
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i5-750 GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD3 Sapphire 5870 2GB Eyefinity 6 edn. G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
x2 OCZ Agility 2 60GB FW1.1 + Seagate 640GB ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Windows 7 Home premium 64-bit DELL U2410 IPS rev. A01 1920x1200 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G11 CORSAIR 750TX HAF 932 DELL 
Mouse Pad
none 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i5-750 GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD3 Sapphire 5870 2GB Eyefinity 6 edn. G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
x2 OCZ Agility 2 60GB FW1.1 + Seagate 640GB ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Windows 7 Home premium 64-bit DELL U2410 IPS rev. A01 1920x1200 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G11 CORSAIR 750TX HAF 932 DELL 
Mouse Pad
none 
  hide details  
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Cases
Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Computer Cases › mini tower? Mid tower? Full tower? Whats the difference?