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Desktops & Components

Best Computer Case

Computer cases can come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, from bizarre custom models designed to look like spaceships, to more toned-down boxes intended for the average computer user. If the motherboard is the central nervous system of a computer, and the CPU is its heart, then the case is the body of the system, which has to protect and support all of the other pieces. That makes it every bit as important to carefully consider your computer case before you buy it, and choose the perfect one for your needs.

Whether you're interested in water cooling or optimal airflow, you will find the right model here for your needs. Consider towers designed to reduce noise output, as well as the best ones that go easy on your wallet. There's also a wide range of sizes based on the type of motherboard you're using, so consider if you need a mini-ITX case or a full tower capable of housing a dozen or more hard drives. Choosing the right case can seem deceptively simple, so take a look at the computer case buyer’s guide below to know exactly what to look for before making a choice.

Thermaltake Core X9 E-ATX Stackable Tt LCS Certified Cube Chassis Cases CA-1D8-00F6WN-00

This outstanding case was just introduced at the Consumer Electronics Show in Jan 2015. It is an exceptional design that offers cooling options and drive options that few cases can approach or match. It is also built extremely well and carries a three year warranty. It uses an innovative 'cube design' instead of the more conventional tower layout. The result is a case that is both compact and very spacious inside. This case is also stackable, meaning that you can also build a computer that utilizes two or more X9 chassis' placed on top each of other resulting in seemingly infinite expansion options. Even as a single chassis, it offers a 200 millimeter fan installed in the front of the case with an option to install a second.

All-in-all this case has mounting points for fifteen fans and multiple radiators up to 480 millimeters in length. It also offer three 5.25 inch drive bays and six 3.5/2.5 inch movable bays and another 5.25 bay and two 2.5 inch mounts on the motherboard tray. If you want a well built case that offers an astounding amount of options for cooling and drives, take a very serious look at this option. Best of all, it is priced reasonably, so it won't break the bank. The only downside I can find with this case is that the cube design might not be to everyone’s taste.

Cooler Master RC-942-KKN1 HAF X Full Tower

With its rugged looks, excellent build quality, accommodations for 200 and 230 millimeter fans, and ample room for 360 millimeter radiators, this case has a storied reputation among overclockers for any DIY or high-end AIO water cooling build. It offers nine expansions slots for three and four GPU setups and features excellent drive flexibility with six 5.25 inch bays in the front of the case., five hidden 3.5 inch bays, and two 5.5/2.5 inch bays in the front of the case which are hot-swappable. This i turn allows users to swap out SSD's and hard drives without opening the case. It carries a one year warranty which is less than some of the other cases on this list. However, it is the customary period for cases built by this company and case construction is very solid. For maximum airflow and good looks this case is worth every penny.

Corsair Obsidian Series 900D Super Tower Computer Case CC-9011022-WW

For many years, the reputation of two cases stood out among overclockers looking for high-end cooling capacity: the Cooler Master HAF X and the Corsair Obsidian 800D. The HAF X is still around and is present on this list while the 800D has been succeeded by an even better case, the Obsidian 900D. This case offers no less than fifteen mounts for fans and has accommodations for two 480 millimeter four-fan radiators in addition to space for smaller radiators. It also features three hot-swappable drive bays allowing SSD replacement without opening the case in addition to nine toolless 3.5 and 2.5 inch drive bays. As one would expect from a manufacturer like Corsair, build quality is exemplary and comes covered by a comprehensive two year warranty as well. Just about the only downside to this case is its very high retail price; however, if you're looking for the greatest in fan and radiator placement flexibility, then you need look no further than this case.

Antec Performance One Series P380 Full Tower

This is Antec's flagship offering. It is a very classy design that utilizes aluminum and steel construction resulting in a case that is both elegant and sturdy. It features nine expansion slots allowing installation of multiple GPU's for those who plan to use more than one graphics card as well as offering two 5.25 in drive bays and a slim 5.25 bays. While these bays will not mount external DVD's (as they're not open on the front of the case) they do offer mounting points for some water cooling components.

This case offers eight 3.5/2.5 inch removable bays for HDD's and SSD drives, allowing a range of options for drives. It also accommodates up to seven fans and 360 millimeter, three fan radiators and features a fan controller hub accommodating up to six fans so users can vary fan speed wit the flip of a switch. While this case may not offer the astounding range of options other cases on this list offer, it's a more traditional, elegant design with plenty of flexible airflow options.

Corsair Graphite Series 760T Full Tower Windowed Case - CC-9011074-WW

This is a nicely balanced case delivers classy looks, great airflow, classy looks, and solid construction. It ships with two powerful 140 millimeter fans installed in the front of the case and another installed in the rear with an option for up to three fans in the top of the case. This case can also accommodate radiators up to 360 millimeters in length in the top of the case and up to 280 millimeters in the front. It ships with a two-speed fan controller which is always a plus for those who want to adjust the speed of the case fans for either airflow or quietness.

The 760T offer three 5.25 inch external drive bays for DVD's and Blu-ray drives, It also ships with two movable drive cages for 3.5/2.5 inch SSD's and hard drives with an option for two more; mounts for four more 2.5 inch drives are included on the motherboard tray as well. While it's not cheap, overall this is a well rounded case that looks good as well as offering great cooling and drive options with few compromises.

Corsair Carbide Series Air 240 Mini Computer Case

This case is a striking and unique mid-tower cube designed with maximum cooling in mind which features feet that can be installed on any side of the case allowing even greater flexibility in your build. It also comes with a side window to display the case internals and is also compartmentalized internally to increase the number of cooling and drives options.

This case ships with three 120 millimeter fans with mounts for up to seven 120 millimeter fans and two 80 millimeter fans. It can also accommodate 240 millimeter radiators, resulting in some excellent cooling options. Drive options are also outstanding, with room for up to three 3.5 inch drives, two 2.5 inch SSD's or hard drives, and four expansion slots are also included for GPU's. Covered by a five year warranty, this is a great design that offers a lot of bang for the buck. The downside is that its cube design might not appeal to every system builder.

Fractal Design Arc Mini R2 High Airflow Micro ATX Case

This is an outstanding case with a subdued and elegant exterior and a well thought-out interior designed with maximum flexibility in mind, with four expansion slots for GPU's. It ships with one 140 millimeter fan in the top of the case with an option for another, one 120 millimeter fan in the front, one 120 milliliter fan in the rear, and also includes a fan controller that can vary the speed of up to three fans. Radiators of up to 240 millimeters in length can also be accommodated. All together, the cooling options in this case are outstanding.

With regards to drive options, this case features two external 5.25 inch DVD drive bays, six 3.5 inch internal hard drive bays in two separate cages as well as mounts for two more 2.5 inch SSD's behind the motherboard; the result is a top notch case with excellent build quality and great flexibility. The downside is it comes at a price somewhat higher than many cases in this class. However, that doesn't you’re still getting a great deal which delivers a lot of value for what you’re paying.

Cooler Master Silencio 352 - Silent Mini Tower Computer Case SIL-352M-KKN1

This case brings a lot to the table without breaking the bank. Its appearance is subdued with a clean front panel which opens to reveal one exposed 5.25 inch and one 3.5 inch bays and vents for two fans. USB ports, power button and an included SD card reader run down the side of the case and are accessible without the need to open the door.

The case is designed for water cooling and features sound insulation material on the interior of the case for silent operation. It can accommodate radiators up to 240 millimeters in length and has mounts for up to five 120 millimeter fans resulting in very good cooling options. The case also features mounts for three 3.4 inch hard drives, four 2.5 inch SSD's, and is equipped with the industry norm four expansion slots.

For good quality construction, silent operation and good hardware flexibility this is a case that deserves a second look. The downside to the case is that it may run a little hotter due to the sound insulation than comparable cases not equipped with such a feature.

Silverstone Tek Micro-ATX Computer Cases - PS07B

This case is a less expensive alternative to the pricier Tmijin TJ08B, without sacrificing many features. Case construction is sturdy and up to the manufacturer usual high level of quality with a clean, understated appearance with two exposed 5.25 in drive bays for DVD's and the power button, USB, and audio ports running down the front of the case on the side. It ships with three excellent 120 millimeter fans although there are no accommodations for water cooling builds, nonetheless is provides good airflow for air cooling.

This case features a removable motherboard tray and top panel to help ease the installation of hardware. Drive flexibility is good with a removable drive cage that accommodates four 3.5 inch drives while another cage will hold two more drives with another mount for an additional 2.4 inch SSD's. Finally, you get four expansion slots which round out the cases build options. While this case won't support as many hardware configurations (such as water cooled build) it remains an excellent buy and takes a well-deserved place among the best of the best for the money.

Deepcool Steam Castle M Mini Computer Case

Deepcool Steam Castle M Mini Computer Case

I've built computers around this case before and found its high quality construction very easy to work with. This case has three 2.4/3.5 inch drive bays and another cage housing two more 2.5 inch drives but the downside to these is that they are non-removable which reduces drive flexibility somewhat. It also has one exposed 5.25 inch bay on the front of the case.

Cooling is handled by mounts for a 200/140/120 millimeter fan in the front of the case, two 120/140 millimeter fans on the top and one 120 millimeter fan in the rear (Two 120 millimeter fans are included from the factory). The top panel can accommodate radiators up to 240 millimeters in length. The result is a well-rounded amount of cooling options.

The front panel features a steam punk-look which includes sculpted corners on the front panel and four stylized, round air vents on the top of the case equipped with LED lights (which can be changed to glow red, green, or blue by turning a dial on the side of the case). USB ports, audio ports and the power button are also to be found on the side of the case. In the end, if the steam punk style is up to your personal tastes, you'll find using this case very satisfactory.

Silverstone Tek GD07B Aluminum Extended ATX / SSI-EEB / SSI-CEB HTPC Computer Case

This case is a stately, subdued, and very well built design large enough to accommodate the biggest dual CPU motherboards and most powerful components. It's well built with a brushed aluminum front panel that functions as a door with a lock for system security. Behind the door are the USB and audio ports, and a four exposed 5.25 inch drive bays. It has five 3.5 inch and 2 2.5 inch internal drive bays for plenty of drive options, a feature that is all important for this type of computer. For greater flexibility it is equipped with a removable drive cage as well. It has seven expansion slots that can accommodate the most powerful multi-GPU setups.

Cooling options are handled by two 80 millimeter fan amounts in the rear, one 120 millimeter fan mount on the left side of the case and two fan mounts of the same size on the right side of the case. It also has oversized vents on the top of the case and two more 120 millimeter fan mounts on the bottom of the case. All-in-all, this case will accommodate the most demanding HTPC builds with ease. While not a case to consider if you intend to build a small HTPC, but for the most demanding builds, this is an outstanding choice.

nMediaPC HTPC 8000B Computer Case

nMediaPC HTPC 8000B Computer Case

This computer case offers a unique, award winning design with an antique aesthetic meant to be proudly displayed in your media center. It's constructed of wood, plastic and steel to create a very pleasing appearance that looks right out of the thirties. As a concession to the size and appearance of this case, the drive and cooling options aren't up to the standards of some of the other cases in this line up, although they are adequate for all mainstream builds. The case is equipped with a single 140 millimeter fan that provides good cooling and quiet operation but lower profile CPU coolers must be used and there aren't accommodations for water-cooling although this isn't a huge factor for this sort of PC.

One external 5.25 inch and four 3.5 inch drive bay provide good SSD and hard drive flexibility, although, once again it isn't as robust as some of the other cases on this list. Also of note is that the LCD panel shown in the illustrations of this case is an option and will cost you a little extra. In the end, the strong point of this case is its striking appearance while providing good but not great flexibility in the choice of components you use. For that reason it take a well deserved place on our list.

Silverstone Milo Series ML05B Computer Case

This is a very tiny, good looking case meant for use with the very small mini-ITX motherboard form factor. The front plate of the case is clear acrylic and lends an very attractive, elegant attractive appearance to the case. Despite its small size, this case is equipped with mounts for up to four 2.5 inch drives giving the case good drive flexibility. A four-in-one bracket also allow the installation of a slim-factor DVD drive an additional 3.5 inch hard drive or a 120 millimeter fan, again, adding to the adaptability of the case.

Cooling is handled by provisions for two 80 millimeter fans on the right side of the case and a mount for another 120 millimeter fan. These are acceptable cooling options of the type of hardware this case is intended to accommodate. A single expansion slot is provided for use with video cards. With little in downsides for a case this size and a price that is very reasonable, if you are seeking the ideal small case for your build, this is well worth a close look.

Akasa Euler S Fanless Solid Aluminum Thin Mini ITX Case

This tiny case offers am all aluminum, fanless design intended for silent operation and use with mini-ITX motherboards and low power CPU's. It weighs a substantial 2.2kg due to a massive aluminum heatsink built into the top of the case. Two USB 3..0 ports and a power button are the front plate. A VESA mount is provided with the case for attaching the case directly to displays or on wall mounts. Due to its small size, the case doesn't offer many drive options and is equipped with accommodations for a single 2.5 inch SSD or hard drive while another downside is the lack of expansion slots for video cards. However, for the type of silent, low power builds for which this case is interned, it offers a solidly built, attractive design well suited for its purpose.

Fractal Design Node 605 Silent Home Theater Computer Case FD-CA-NODE-605-BL

This case is intended for full size ATX style motherboards with exemplary build quality. It has an elegant faceplate with a flip-down door at the bottom of the case that opens to reveal USB, audio ports, a fire-wire port and a card reader to allow easier transfer of media. Cooling is well handled by two 80 millimeter fan mounts at the rear of the case and three 120 millimeter mount on the side of the case. It has one external slim 5.25 inch bay for optical drives and four internal 2.5/3.5 inch bays for SSD's and hard drives, giving it adequate but not outstanding drive options. Seven expansion slot provide plenty of options for video card installations. To ensure quite operation, it has acoustic material installed in the inside-top panel of the case. The downside to this case is it premium price, but you do get a lot for what you pay for.

Thermaltake Core V51 ATX Mid Tower Gaming Computer Case

This case offers the user an award winning design with a mesh front panel and rounded top and bottom corners to give it a simple and elegant presence in your computer room. The case construction is top notch with the power button, I/O, and two exposed 5.25 inch bays found at the top of the front panel. Removable drive cages house up to five 2.5/3.5 inch drives and the 5.25 inch bays are removable as well, yielding great SSD and HDD flexibility. This case also provides eight expansion slots for multi-GPU setups.

Cooling options are outstanding with accommodations for 120/140/200 millimeter fans in the front, 120/140/200 fans in the top, a 120/140 millimeter fan in the rear, and one more in the bottom of the case. Radiators up to 420 millimeters may be installed in the top and front of the case making exceptional options for water cooling. Downsides are essentially non-existent with this case, qualifying it as the best of the best among mid-tower offerings on the market today.

Corsair Vengeance Series Black C70 Mid Tower Computer Case

This case has a military-industrial, rugged appearance and is constructed to the highest standards. While this hardcore look may or may not be to your taste, the sheer number of available hardware options is outstanding.

It has eight expansion slots and can accommodate full length video cards allowing you to use high-end GPU's and multi-card setups. The downside is you'll need to remove at least one of the drive cages if you’re using full-length GPU's. It can house up to ten fans including two in the side panel and radiators up to 240 millimeters in length for an outstanding range of cooling options.

Drive flexibility is good as well with additional options including provisions for three external 5.25 inch optical drives and up to six 3.5/2.5 inch SSD's and hard drives in tool-less removable cages. The only downsides to this case is its premium price, but as so often happens when it comes to computer hardware, you tend to get what you are willing to pay for.

Fractal Design Arc Midi R2 with Solid Side Panel Computer Case

This case provides a minimalistic design along with a number of features that make it an excellent value given its price point. This case ships with a side window to display your hardware and also includes a built-in fan controller that allows you to tailor the speed of your fans for maximum airflow or silent operation.

Three fans are included and it has mounts for up to seven fans, although the included fans are not the best quality and you might want to replace them. There is room for radiators up to 240 millimeters in length in the top and the front of the case, so the number of cooling options is very good.

This case has two external 5.25 inch drive bays, two HDD cages that can house up to eight 2.5/3.5 inch drives, and two additional mounts for 2.5 inch drives behind the motherboard tray. It comes with seven expansion slots that allow high-end GPU's up to 430 millimeters to be used when you remove the upper drive cage. Overall this case is an excellent choice for your mid-tower, high performance build.

Rosewill Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case Star Predator

This flashy-looking case has a sculpted front panel lighted with blue LED fans that may or may not be to your liking. It ships with three 120 millimeter fans, mounts for up to six fans, and it can also house a 240 millimeter radiator in the front of the case. It includes eight expansion slots and can take GPU's up to 390 millimeters in length for multi-card setups and high-end GPU's.

The case ships with two removable drive cages for 2.5/3.5 inch SSD's and hard drives, two external 5.25 inch bays for DVD's, and an additional internal 2.5 inch bay; plainly put, you’ve got an abundance of drive options at your command with this case. It also has quite a low price especially considering what you get for your money. All-in-all it's hard to go wrong with this option for your next build.

Fractal Design Define R4

Another strong showing from Fractal Design, this case offers a simple and elegant design with a stately appearance manufactured with both silent operation and hardware comparability in mind. At the front you have a door with acoustic material for sound deadening which opens to reveal two exposed 5.25 inch bays and mounts for two fans. The same sort of acoustic material is included with the side panel to ensure quiet operation.

Cooling options include mounts for two 120/140 millimeter fans in the top and front of the case and single fans of the same size in the bottom and rear of the case. A fan controller is included to vary the speed of up to three fans and radiators up to 240 millimeters can be accommodated. Overall the cooling options are good but they’re not particularly impressive either.

There are eight expansion slots and high-end GPU's up to 430 millimeters may be used if the top drive cages are removed. Two removable drive cages accommodate up to eight 2.5/3.5 inch HDD and SSD's while two more 2.5 inch drive may be mounted on the back of the motherboard tray, making for outstanding drive flexibility. At this price point it is hard to do anything but recommend this case for serious consideration since there’s so much to like about it

ThermalTake System Cabinet - Mid-tower - Black

This case brings a lot to the table considering its inexpensive price point. It features a classy-looking mesh front panel for improved airflow along with a small side window which contributes cases overall appearance. It also ships with a blue LED fan installed in the rear of the case lending some color to the build. It offers two fan mounts on the top, and one each on the bottom, and front of the case those interested in more cooling capacity. It has seven expansion slots for multi-GPU setups.

The case also offers one external 3.5 inch bay, four internal 3.5 inch bays, and four external 5.25 inch bays, all with a tool-less design for ease of use and plenty of drive flexibility. A downside is that no 2.5 inch bays are offered standard, so if you want to install 2.5 inch SSD's, you will have to purchase drive adapters. It comes with a comprehensive three year warranty which is very good given how inexpensive this unit is. For a good looking case from a respected manufacturer with plenty of flexibility considering its price point, you need look no further.

Cooler Master Elite 431 Plus Mid Tower Computer Case

This case begins by offering you an elegant appearance with a nicely sculpted front panel and a window in the side of the case so you can see the internals of your build. The front of the case is equipped with USB ports, audio ports, two 5.25 inch and two 3.5 bays. The case also includes a hot-swappable 3.5 inch bay (an excellent as well as rare feature at this price point) which allows changing out SSD's and hard drives without opening the case. Internally you get five 3.5 inch bays offering tool-less design for ease of use. Additionally it has seven expansions slots to provide  great flexibility when installing video cards.

The case comes with a blue LED 120 millimeter fan installed in the front of the case, giving the case come color and a flashier appearance. With regards to cooling, it has accommodations for a rear fan, a fan in the bottom of the case, and two fans in the top of the case; water-cooling radiators up to 280 millimeters in length may be installed in the top of the case. It offers a one year warranty. Covered by a one year warranty, is a well designed case that offers excellent value for putting together a budget build.

Enermax Ostrog ATX Computer Case - ECA3253

This case offers a very clean and functional appearance with the front panel ports for USB and audio on a raised section at the top front of the case. A colored accent line runs around the parameter of the case and is available in several colors, adding some flashiness to the cases elegant look. It's equipped with a side window that has vents for two 120/140 millimeter fans, which is a big plus for cooing. Additionally, there's accommodations for two additional 120/140 millimeter fans on top, an included rear fan, and an option for a front 120 millimeter fan and one on the bottom (although this last one isn't very usable with most builds)

For drive options it features two removable 3.5/2.5 inch bays that have total space for up to six drives with tool-less installation. It also has four external 5.25 in inch bays, one again with a tool-less design for ease of use. It has seven expansion slots and room for longer, high end video cards if you remove the upper 3.5 inch internal bay. This is a very well rounded design that should be on your short list of very good value for your dollar.

Thermaltake Versa H24 Computer Case CA-1C1-00M1NN-00

While not quite as versatile as some of the other cases in this lineup, nonetheless, it still offers a lot for the money.  It offers seven expansion slots for multiple video cards, two external 5.25 inch bays, three internal 3.5/2.5 inch bays and three additional 2.5 inch bays although a downside is that none of these are movable. With a mesh faceplate and subdued design, it's made by a top-tier manufacturer and given an excellent three year warranty, so you need not worry about build quality.

For cooling options it comes with a 120 millimeter exhaust fan in the rear of the case with options for two more fans in the top of the case and one more in the front. Water cooling options are limited to space for one 120 millimeter radiator in the top of the case, so it's flexibility in this area puts in behind some of the other cases in this lineup. Still, it remains a solid choice for good looks and a reasonable number of build options.

NZXT Technologies Mid Tower Case - Source 220 CA-SO220-01

This case features a mesh faceplate with asymmetrical placement of the front USB and audio ports that results in good looks and a bit of interesting variation from the norm. It offers three external 5.25 inch bays, eight 3.5/2.5 inch internals bays, all with a tool-less design for ease of construction, although a downside is that none of the bays are movable. Seven expansions slots round out the cases build options.

For cooling options, it ships with a 120 millimeter fan installed in the rear, and a 140 millimeter fan installed in the top of the case, with options for two fans in the front of the case and another in this top. A downside here is that because of the fan placement, it isn't possible to install and radiators larger the 120 millimeters in length, limiting the build to single fan water cooling. It carries a good two year warranty, and manufactured by a top-tier brand so construction quality isn't an issue. Given the price, this case is an excellent value so long as you're not looking for a great deal of water cooling options.

Phanteks Enthoo Series Primo ATX Ultimate Full Tower Computer Case

Three things really strike you about this case. First of all, its appearance is very elegant and very well made. Second, its offers numerous options for cooling with space for up to sixteen 120 millimeter fans or eleven 140 millimeter fans. Depending upon which positions you are looking at, the fan attachment points also allow for one, two, and three fan radiators. Attachment areas in both the top and bottom of the case allow space for radiators up to 480 millimeters in length, which is an option offered on very few cases. This is a big plus for users interested the best water cooling for their CPU or multiple video cards.

The case also ships with five 140 millimeter fans which is more than most cases offer as standard equipment. Finally, this case offers great flexibility with movable hard drive bays offering space for up to six 5.5 inch or 2.5 inch SSD's or hard drives. Additionally there are five fixed bays for 5.2 inch drives such as DVD's. Behind the motherboard tray there also are two 2.5 inch bays that can be mounted in three different positions.

All-in-all, this case offers flexibility that’s second to none. While the cost of this case is quite high, you are getting optimum cooling and drive options in a well built case that’s very pleasing to the eye; it’s an outstanding value.

NZXT Technologies H630 Glossy White Computer Case CA-H630F-W1

This is another case that with a very stunning and elegant appearance and high construction quality. It also offers that added benefit of being designed with quiet operations in mind. To that end, it’s equipped with a 200 millimeter fan in the front and a 140mm fan in the rear. For silent operation, bigger fans are a big plus because they offer both high airflow and quiet operation at the same time. Mounts are also provided for an additional 200 millimeter fan, or alternately, two 140 millimeter fans or up to three 120 millimeter fans in the front and two 200 millimeter fans or three 120 millimeter fans in the top of the case. Accommodations are also made for two 140 millimeter or 120 millimeter fans in the bottom of the case, and space is available for radiators in the top, bottom, front and rear of the case. This ensures exceptional cooling for powerful CPU's, multiple video cards and water cooling setups.

Drive flexibility has also been taken into consideration in this design. It offers two movable bays for three 5.5 inch or 2.5 inch drives and a movable bay for two 5.5 inch or 2.5 inch SSD's and hard drives along with two 2.5 inch mounts behind the motherboard tray. Two DVD drives may be mounted in the front of the case.The only downside is in that compromises were made for silent operation combined with the need for good thermal performance. While this case is very good at both, it’s also not the absolute best in-class at either. That being said, for good cooling, great appearance, silent operation and good flexibility you need to look no further than this case.

Cooler Master RC-942-KKN1 HAF X Full Tower

With its rugged looks, excellent build quality, accommodations for 200 and 230 millimeter fans, and ample room for 360 millimeter radiators, this case has a storied reputation among overclockers for any DIY or high-end AIO water cooling build. It offers nine expansions slots for three and four GPU setups and features excellent drive flexibility with six 5.25 inch bays in the front of the case., five hidden 3.5 inch bays, and two 5.5/2.5 inch bays in the front of the case which are hot-swappable. This i turn allows users to swap out SSD's and hard drives without opening the case. It carries a one year warranty which is less than some of the other cases on this list. However, it is the customary period for cases built by this company and case construction is very solid. For maximum airflow and good looks this case is worth every penny.

ThermalTake VN10001W2N Level 10 GT Black Full Tower

No list of top cases would be complete without a look at this selection offering an appearance which is unique and absolutely stunning. However, it’s extravagant exterior design sacrifices a little in flexibility and ease of construction. It ships with three 200 millimeter fans in the front, top, and side of the case and one 140 millimeter fan in the rear to ensure very good airflow. However, the flexibility of accommodations for water cooling setups is not up to the same standard as some of the other cases in this list.

This case has ample room for drives with four 5.25 inch drive bays in the front and one 3.5 inch hot-swappable bay, also in the front. Internally it has five 2.5/5.5 inch bays, but a downside to this is that none of the drive bays are movable. It’s priced near the upper end of the spectrum but for a sheer in-your-face appearance, nothing beats this case. When considering this selection you must weigh its considerable appeal against the sacrifices made in favor of its awesome appearance.

NZXT Source 530 Full Tower Chassis, Black Mesh CA-SO530-M1

This case doesn’t skimp on features and is a good choice for those on a budget. It has a simple, elegant appearance, and offers more than enough drive and fan options. It can accommodate a 20 millimeter or smaller fan in the front, a 140 millimeter fan in the rear, a 120 millimeter fan in the bottom and up to three 120 millimeter fans in the top of the case. It can take up to 360 millimeter radiators in the top, allowing for many water cooling options.

This case has three 5.25 inch drive bays in the front of the case, six internal 5.5/2.5 inch drive bays in removable assemblies, and one 2.5 inch bay behind the motherboard tray; these options allow good flexibility for installing hard drives and SSD's. The case also comes with a fan controller that allows up to ten fans to be attached to it. Although the build quality isn't quite as good as some of the more expensive cases, and it does skimp on a couple of features, this case is still an excellent value for its price point.

Fractal Design Define S Gaming Case with Window FD-CA-DEF-S-BK-W

This is an award winning design from Fractal Design that brings a lot to the table. First of all, it has sound insulation in the side panels to help ensure quiet operation and cooling is handled by two 140 millimeter fan installed at the factory for quiet operation. It has an option for up to nine 120/140 millimeter fan positions and the top fan mount will also accept a 180 millimeter fan. It can accept radiators up to 420 millimeters long in the top of the case and 360 millimeters long in the front, giving it plenty of cooling compatibility.

Drive options are plentiful as well with accommodations for three 2.5/3.5 inch drive with two more 2.5 inch drive mounts behind the motherboard tray. It features seven expansion slots and will accept GPU's up to 425 millimeters in length allowing the installation of high-end graphics cards. The result of all this is a very quiet case that will accept the highest performance hardware. Best of all, it comes at a price that won’t break the bank.

NZXT H440 Mid Tower Case

This case is a mid-tower design with a very clean appearance with nothing in the way of exposed drive bays and a stylish painted steel front panel. HDD and SSD accommodations are plentiful with mounts for up to eleven 3.5 inch drives or nine 2.5 inch drives internally; however, there are no 5.25 inch bays included with the design, so users may not install optical drives. To ensure quiet operation, the case is lined sound absorption foam and it is equipped with three 120 millimeters fans in the front of the case and one 140 millimeter fan in the rear.

Up to seven fans may be installed and accommodations are present for radiators up to 360 millimeters long. The rear I/O area is illuminated with LED lights and it includes a fan controller for varying the speeds of installed fans for quiet operation of maximum airflow. It features seven expansion slots and can accept top of the line GPU's up to 406 millimeters long if you remove some of the drive cages. This case is well deserving of its accolades with several innovative features that make it well worth its price.

Corsair Obsidian Series Black 550D Mid Tower Computer Case (CC-9011015-WW)

This computer case offers a very clean design with a number of features catering to builders who want a quiet, yet high performance computer with front and side panels equipped with sound insulation along with the top and side vent covers. It also has eight expansion slots and can accommodate high-end video cards up to 420 millimeters long. Cooling is well handled by mounts for up to six 120/140 millimeter fans and four 120 millimeter fans along with a mount for a 200 millimeter fan located in the side door.

Drive compatibility is plentiful with removable 2/5/3.5 inch drive bays which can accommodate up to six drives and there are also four 5.25 inch exposed bays for inclusion of optical drives. The result is a very capable case offering both quite operation and high performance hardware compatibility. The only downside is the price, which remains at the upper end of the scale.

AeroCool MicroATX and Mini-ITX Dead Silence Series DS Cube

This is a very attractive cube design for micro-ATX mini-ITX boards which is equipped with two interior chambers for hardware to maximize quiet operation and cooling effective. The exterior front and the top panel are covered with a soft-touch material that lends a unique appearance and feel to the enclosure while providing a degree of sound deadening.

Inside, the motherboard is installed horizontally instead of vertically to increase airflow and the case also ships with a 200 millimeter low speed fan in the front and a 120 millimeter low speed fan in the rear for quiet operation. Mounts are provided for two additional 120/140 millimeter fans in the top of the case and provisions are made for radiators up to 240 millimeters long, so it has very good cooling options for a silent case this size.

Drive options provide mounts for single exposed 5.25 and 3.5 inch drives with internal bays for up to four 2.5 inch SSD's or two 3.5 inch and two 2.5 inch drives. Once again, the result is a case with good hardware compatibility for its size. All-in-all, this is quite a well-designed case providing both quiet operations and provide room for high performance hardware. The downside is that all this comes at a premium price.

Fractal Design Define R4

Another strong showing from Fractal Design, this case offers a simple and elegant design with a stately appearance manufactured with both silent operation and hardware comparability in mind. At the front you have a door with acoustic material for sound deadening which opens to reveal two exposed 5.25 inch bays and mounts for two fans. The same sort of acoustic material is included with the side panel to ensure quiet operation.

Cooling options include mounts for two 120/140 millimeter fans in the top and front of the case and single fans of the same size in the bottom and rear of the case. A fan controller is included to vary the speed of up to three fans and radiators up to 240 millimeters can be accommodated. Overall the cooling options are good but they’re not particularly impressive either.

There are eight expansion slots and high-end GPU's up to 430 millimeters may be used if the top drive cages are removed. Two removable drive cages accommodate up to eight 2.5/3.5 inch HDD and SSD's while two more 2.5 inch drive may be mounted on the back of the motherboard tray, making for outstanding drive flexibility. At this price point it is hard to do anything but recommend this case for serious consideration since there’s so much to like about it

Thermaltake Core X1 Black Mini ITX Case

This is an amazing case with absolutely top-notch hardware options with a stackable design, meaning builders can assemble two or more of these cases stacked on top of one another to dramatically increase the amount of space available for hardware. Even without stacking them, this case offers excellent build flexibility. Cooling options are outstanding with mounts for 200/140/120 millimeter fans in the top and front of the case. There are mounts for one 120 millimeter fan in the rear and in the bottom of the case. Radiators up to 360 millimeters can be used resulting superior cooling compatibility.

Drive options are also excellent with two 5.25 inch exposed bay are provided along with an internal HDD cage housing up to four 3.5/2.5 inch HDD's and SSD's with another 2.5 inch mount found behind the motherboard tray. Two expansion slots for GPU's are provided which is the industry standard for Mini-ITZ motherboards and to top it all off, a three year manufacturer’s warranty is included. In sum, this case provides an absolutely outstanding array of hardware options.

Phanteks Enthoo Evolv Mini ITX Case

Phanteks Enthoo Evolv Mini ITX Case

Frankly, we’re astounded at what the manufacturer has managed to fit in this case. Since this case may also house micro-ATX motherboards, four expansions slots are included although for ITX builds you will need only two slots. Drive options are good with one external 5.25 inch drive bay, three internal 3.5 inch bays and five 2.5 inch bays. Cooling options are also very good with space for 200/140/120 millimeter fans in the front of the case and mounts for 120/140 millimeter fans in the rear and top of the case. You also get water cooling radiators up to 280 millimeters in the top of the case and up to 240 millimeters round out the cooling options. The exterior of the case is restrained and finished with black aluminum front and side panels. A five year warranty covers this case which boasts top notch hardware in a well built, good looking package.

Corsair Graphite Series 380T Mini-ITX Portable PC Case

This case offer a good looking, efficient cube design with a carrying handle at the top of the enclosure, plenty of interior space, and removable mesh grills on the front and both side of the case for ease of hardware assembly and maintenance. It has two expansion slots and can accept high-end graphics cards up to 290 millimeters in length.

Cooling is handled by mounts for 200/140/120 millimeter fans in the front, a 120 millimeter fan in the rear and two 120 millimeters side fans. A three speed fan controller is included allowing the user to tailor fan speeds for maximum cooling or silent operation. Radiators up to 240 millimeters may be installed in the side of the case.

Drive accommodations include mounts for two 2.5 inch drives and a combo cage housing two more 2.5/3.5 inch SSD's or HDD's. This is an inspired design that offers a great deal of room for a mini-ITX case. They downside is that it comes at a premium price, but if you are willing to pay the cost, you'll get a lot for your money.

Cooler Master Elite 130 - Mini-ITX Computer Case with Mesh Front Panel and Water Cooling Support

With a small and attractive design, this case feature a lot of room and adequate flexibility at a very attractive price point. The front panel is mesh that lends itself well to the stately, subdued appearance of the case. USB and audio ports are found one side of the case front panel, while the power and reset buttons are one the other side.

It can accommodate up to one 5.25 inch DVD, three 3.5 inch hard drives and four 2.5 inch SSD's through use of innovative drive cages. The downside is that not all of these drives can be housed at the same time, just different combinations of them such as one optical drive, two hard drives and one SSD. This case also includes two expansion slots and mounts GPU's up to 343 millimeters in length allowing the user to install high-end video cards.

It has mounts for an 80 millimeter fan in the side and one 120 millimeter fan in the front and 120 millimeter radiators can be installed in the front. Thus, while adequate, the cooling options are just not up to the same standards as some of the other cases on this list. In the end, this case is a good, inexpensive alternative to more capable and costly solutions.

Cougar Case QBX Mini ITX Case

This is a very good looking case with a number of innovative features and a price that won't break the bank. The front panel is devoid of slots or features with USB and audio ports and recessed air exhaust slots running down each side. An exposed 5.25 inch bay that accepts only slot loading slim optical drives can be found on the top of the case.

Cooling is handled by accommodations for an 80 millimeter fan in the front, one 90 millimeter fan in the rear, two 120 millimeter fans in the top, a 120 millimeter fan in the side and another in the bottom. It can also accept 240 millimeter radiators in the side although it may only have one fan. So, cooling options are good but not top-of-class.

This case can accept top-end GPU's up to 350 millimeters long and has two expansion slots. Drive options include mounts for one 3.5 inch drive and four 2.5 inch drives internally in addition to the slim optical drive. The result is a competent and inexpensive case well suited for a budget Mini-ITX build.

Thermaltake Core X9 E-ATX Stackable Tt LCS Certified Cube Chassis Cases CA-1D8-00F6WN-00

This outstanding case was just introduced at the Consumer Electronics Show in Jan 2015. It is an exceptional design that offers cooling options and drive options that few cases can approach or match. It is also built extremely well and carries a three year warranty. It uses an innovative 'cube design' instead of the more conventional tower layout. The result is a case that is both compact and very spacious inside. This case is also stackable, meaning that you can also build a computer that utilizes two or more X9 chassis' placed on top each of other resulting in seemingly infinite expansion options. Even as a single chassis, it offers a 200 millimeter fan installed in the front of the case with an option to install a second.

All-in-all this case has mounting points for fifteen fans and multiple radiators up to 480 millimeters in length. It also offer three 5.25 inch drive bays and six 3.5/2.5 inch movable bays and another 5.25 bay and two 2.5 inch mounts on the motherboard tray. If you want a well built case that offers an astounding amount of options for cooling and drives, take a very serious look at this option. Best of all, it is priced reasonably, so it won't break the bank. The only downside I can find with this case is that the cube design might not be to everyone’s taste.

Phanteks Enthoo Series Primo ATX Ultimate Full Tower Computer Case

Three things really strike you about this case. First of all, its appearance is very elegant and very well made. Second, its offers numerous options for cooling with space for up to sixteen 120 millimeter fans or eleven 140 millimeter fans. Depending upon which positions you are looking at, the fan attachment points also allow for one, two, and three fan radiators. Attachment areas in both the top and bottom of the case allow space for radiators up to 480 millimeters in length, which is an option offered on very few cases. This is a big plus for users interested the best water cooling for their CPU or multiple video cards.

The case also ships with five 140 millimeter fans which is more than most cases offer as standard equipment. Finally, this case offers great flexibility with movable hard drive bays offering space for up to six 5.5 inch or 2.5 inch SSD's or hard drives. Additionally there are five fixed bays for 5.2 inch drives such as DVD's. Behind the motherboard tray there also are two 2.5 inch bays that can be mounted in three different positions.

All-in-all, this case offers flexibility that’s second to none. While the cost of this case is quite high, you are getting optimum cooling and drive options in a well built case that’s very pleasing to the eye; it’s an outstanding value.

Corsair Obsidian Series 900D Super Tower Computer Case CC-9011022-WW

For many years, the reputation of two cases stood out among overclockers looking for high-end cooling capacity: the Cooler Master HAF X and the Corsair Obsidian 800D. The HAF X is still around and is present on this list while the 800D has been succeeded by an even better case, the Obsidian 900D. This case offers no less than fifteen mounts for fans and has accommodations for two 480 millimeter four-fan radiators in addition to space for smaller radiators. It also features three hot-swappable drive bays allowing SSD replacement without opening the case in addition to nine toolless 3.5 and 2.5 inch drive bays. As one would expect from a manufacturer like Corsair, build quality is exemplary and comes covered by a comprehensive two year warranty as well. Just about the only downside to this case is its very high retail price; however, if you're looking for the greatest in fan and radiator placement flexibility, then you need look no further than this case.

Thermaltake Core V71 E-ATX Full Tower Gaming Computer Case CA-1B6-00F1WN-00

This is a very well designed case that offers very good hardware options. Dive compatibility is excellent with removable drive cages that allow up to eight 2.5/3.5 inch hard drives and SSD's to be used. Two exposed 5.25 inch bays for DVD's top of drive options.

Cooling options are excellent as well with provisions for 200/140/120 millimeter fans in the front and top of the case and 120/140 millimeter fans in the rear and bottom of the case. It will also accommodate radiators up to 420 millimeters long, allowing the best water cooling solutions to be used.

The front of the case is meshed with a mesh grill, power switch and I/O posts on the top. The case also features blue-lit LED fans and blue accents on the hard drive cages which are visible through the clear side window lending some flashy color to the case. The price is very reasonable considering what you get for your money and it’s backed by an excellent three year warranty on top of that.

Fractal Design Arc XL Case FDCAARCXLBLW

This case offers good construction with a clean front panel that has a rectangular intake grill on the lower front of the case and four exposed 5.25 inch bays for optical drives can be found near the top of the front panel. Drive options are fleshed out well with eight 2.5/3/5 inch HDD and SSD mounts and two additional 2.5 inch mounts behind the motherboard tray. Nine expansion slots room for GPU's up to 480 millimeters in length provide exceptional compatibility for high-end video card setups.

Three fans are included with the case as is a fan controller that can vary the speed of up to three fans. Mounts are included for up to eight 120/140 millimeters fans and radiators up to 360 millimeters long. However, a downside here is that this case will only accept slim radiators if they are of the longest type. All-in-all, this is a very competent design that allows very good hardware options but it’s not up to the same standards as some of the other cases on this list.

Buyer's Guide

Computer Case Buyer's Guide

While computer cases might not have as many technical specifications as a motherboard or video card, there are quite a few important factors to consider. The form factor you choose depends on the motherboard you plan on using, and consider whether you want one that includes a power supply. Proper cooling is very important, so look at included fans plus mounts for more and filters, while you consider physical options like what the case is made from as well as the ports, drive bays, and expansion slots available.

Form Factor and Size

Also referred to as the type of case, the size or form factor is based around the type of motherboard that can fit into it, as well as how much additional room you have within the case. The most common type is ATX with sizes that include Full, Mid, and Mini, as well as MicroATX and Mini-ITX.

No case size is particularly better than another, it all depends on the type of computer you are building and the associated motherboard. Just be sure to pick a case with proper mounting for the motherboard and is large enough to accommodate your other components, especially if you’re looking to include a very large video card.

Power Supply Options

This is a pretty simple consideration but still one you should keep in mind before making a choice. If you need a power supply, then look at computer cases that include a PSU to save yourself some money and time in picking a separate power supply and installing it. If you already have a power supply, or want a very specific one, choose a computer case without one, but look at whether the case has top or bottom mounts for the PSU. Keep in mind, any included power supply can easily be removed and swapped out with a different PSU, but there’s no reason to pay for a power supply included with a case you don’t intend to use.

Fans, Mountings, and Removable Filters

Cooling within a case is very important so look at the fans that are included and the potential to add more of your own. What you want to look at is fan locations on the front, side, and rear panel. Some cases include fan mounts or fans on the bottom and top of the case, though this is not strictly necessary. Included fans are great, but since fans are fairly inexpensive it’s more important to look at the mounts for fans on the case; this way you can add or replace any fans in the future.

You want mounts for at least 140mm fans, but 160mm or up to 200mm are really ideal. At least one fan mount at each location is important, but you should look for a case with two mounts on the front and back for optimal ventilation. While you can choose fans that include filters, it’s worth considering a case which includes fan filters you can easily slide out for easy cleaning to ensure proper air flow.

Front Ports

While the usability of front ports depends a lot on your motherboard and the connections that it has, it is still worth considering what ports are available to you on the case itself. You probably want at least a pair of USB ports, preferably 2.0 or 3.0, though audio ports on the front of a case can be very convenient. If you have a motherboard already or one in mind you plan on purchasing, look at how many USB ports and similar connections it has mid-board and choose a computer case which takes advantage of these connectors.

Size and Number of Drive Bays

Looking inside a computer case, you want to be sure to consider how many drive bays are available as well as the sizes of each one. At the very least, you should choose a case with three or four 5.25 inch bays, a pair of 3.5 inch bays, and at least one 2.5 inch bay. This gives you a lot of freedom for how you want to set up your system as well as options for future expansion as you may want to add more drives.

Much of this will depend on the size of the case you choose, however, which is why it is important to look at every aspect of a case altogether. Plan out your system ahead of time and decide on how many drives you want and of what sizes, so you can then choose a case that gives you the options you need. However, pick a model with a few more drive bays then you plan on using so you always leave room for additions and future expansion.

Expansion Slots

You also need to pick a computer case with the right number of rear expansion slots to work with your motherboard and configured to match where your cards will be. Figure out what motherboard you want to use and your expansion cards (especially video cards) so you know how many expansion slots you need on the rear of the case. Your motherboard’s rear panel should work fine with any computer case, as long as you choose a tower that’s the right form factor for your motherboard.

Case Material

Computer cases are prone to taking quite a bit of abuse, so be sure to pick a model that can hold up to anything you throw at it. Look for cases which include as much metal in their construction as possible in order to resist most damage and protect the vital components within. While some plastic components are acceptable, the bulk of the case should be metal.

If you’re building a smaller case you intend to be portable, such as taking to conventions or LAN parties, then plastic materials might be ideal to keep the overall unit weight low. Just keep in mind that a plastic case will be more prone to breaks and cracks, so you will need to be more careful with it during transportation.

Manufacturer and Warranty

Although you are less likely to have manufacturing issues with a computer case compared to complex components like processors and graphics cards, it is still important to choose a good company with a reputation for reliability and durability. Look at manufacturers like Antec, Raidmax, NZXT, and Enermax for solid cases that are built well. Companies that are known for other peripherals like CoolMaster, Corsair, and ThermalTake also construct excellent computer cases. While a one-year warranty is the bare minimum you should except, there are quite a few manufacturers that cover their cases for two or three years, so keep that in mind as you consider your options.

Bestcovery Staff
Our research team searches out the best of everything so that you can confidently pick the perfect products and services for your needs.
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