Case recommendations needed

primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' BoopinDetroit, MI Icrontian
edited September 2015 in Hardware

I'd like to re-case my PC. While I like the NZXT Phantom OMGHUEG9000 BIGGEST BOLDEST BADASS CASE IN THE UNIVERSE MEGA EDITION, it's just ridiculously and unnecessarily huge. I'd like something tasteful that doesn't conform to the aesthetic described in this article. I.e. a plain-ish, classy case that is also functional.

I'm probably leaning towards the Fractal Design sensibilities, but I haven't looked at cases in a few years. What's good, Icrontic?

My current hardware includes a full ATX motherboard and a Radeon R9-380. I have one SSD and one 3.5" HD. I have a huge tower-stack cooler but I'm perfectly willing to change that out with something AMD Bulldozer compatible. In fact, yeah, go ahead and recommend a cooler for me too.




  • SnarkasmSnarkasm Madison, WI Icrontian

    I went with a Raven RV-05 that I love. I've always loved the rotated design, though, and it's not for everybody. It's a very subtle-looking case, to me.

  • RequitRequit That one guy Somewhere over there, I don't know Icrontian
    edited September 2015

    I grabbed myself a HAF XB EVO a few years ago, and really enjoy it. It's distinct yet functional, and really easy to swap parts out of. I don't have pictures of mine handy, so here's some stock shots:

    Bonus if you're into it, it's also customizable with clear sides instead of mesh, if you want to show off your lighting super slick cable management.

  • GargGarg Purveyor of Lincoln Nightmares Icrontian

    I always look at Lian-Li first. My PC-A05 is pretty tight to work in, but is much higher quality and easier to work in than a Fractal Design case I bought. The Fractal Design case has a poorly designed hard drive tray that doesn't fit my drives right in any orientation, the fan controller died within a month, and one of the fans died within a year. The Lian-Li has held up well, is lightweight, and has OEM replacement panels and accessories available (which I used to get a vented top panel).

  • My adult case that I've been happily using for two years and I'll probably use for future builds:

    Is this too big for you? They make a smaller 450D that is likely also nice.

    I can't recommend a cooler too because not informed.

  • Another Obsidian owner here. I have the Obsidian 650D and I've been pretty happy with it.

  • ThraxThrax 🐌 Austin, TX Icrontian

    I have a Corsair 650D, super sleek and classy w/o the side window.

  • Corsair build quality in the Obsidian line is fantastic. The only thing negative I will say is that I have owned a couple in their Graphite line where the fan controllers fail continually. That said they have always been a pleasure to deal with, RMA process was pain free.

    I have also built in Fractal Design cases. Build quality is also very good. I would say Corsair has a mild edge in quality of materials but Dat stock fan. The Fractal Design stock fans are so quiet yet move a fair amount of air. If you want to please your ears as well as your eyes Fractal has a couple models that they design to be close to silent.

  • SonorousSonorous F@H Fanatic US Icrontian

    Put another vote in for Corsair. 750D is also available without the side window I believe.

  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian

    Corsair's Obsidian cases are awesome.

  • Honestly on the cooler I have a Corsair H100 and I don't think it drives its value. It is kinda cool looking but its stock fans are loud and I don't overclock enough to take advantage. I don't recommend unless you are going to overclock some bleeding edge chip.

    I'd stick with air, pick something that fits your design aesthetic. I actually like a couple inexpensive deepcool models that use the standard AMD clip.

  • ThraxThrax 🐌 Austin, TX Icrontian

    H100 is incredibly quiet if you press the center button that turns down the fan RPMs.

  • DontCallMeKelsoDontCallMeKelso Kelso 'The Great Asshole' San Jose, CA Icrontian

    I like the concept behind these cases that CM is doing now

    Also have their oldschool CM Storm Trooper

    Part of me wishes I went with the Corsair cases cause they look awesome.

  • UPSLynxUPSLynx :KAPPA: Redwood City, CA Icrontian

    Thermaltake has some really strong chassis out right now. My current build is in the Urban T-81, but it's a full size chassis and absolutely massive. I was looking for a giant case, and I got it. Brushed aluminum on the front door, super sturdy build quality with lots of extras, ventilation on the roof for water cooling rad, filters on all fan intakes, amazingly easy to operate door paneling, etc etc etc. I love it so much.

    But I know you said you didn't want something OMGHEUG, so I'd recommend checking out the Core V71 series. Sleek, classy, with almost all of the sweet features I mentioned above.

  • drasnordrasnor Starship Operator Hawthorne, CA Icrontian
    edited September 2015

    Lian Li PC-7B Mk 2. Really anything Lian Li; I've tried other manufacturers (Antec, Silverstone, Thermaltake, Cooler Master) but I always come back to these rigid yet surprisingly light brushed aluminum chassis. My PC-8B is on its third computer and still looking excellent; PC-7B Mk 2 looks like the same case under a different name. If you need more drives then get an A series or a PC-9.

    My media PC shrank from Micro ATX to Mini ITX and now lives in a PC-Q08B with the stock fans replaced with high-flow, quiet, drab brown Noctuas. You should get decent fans regardless of what you end up buying.

    EDIT: PC-8B has a blowhole which is missing on the 7B; I don't consider this a loss.

  • Correction @Thrax I have the H100i. Still I'm not sure they drive their value as much as they have been effectively marketed. It's not bad, it cools effectively but I simply don't overclock enough to justify and mine is pretty loud under load and I have tried several things to tame it short of spending even more to replace the fans.

    That said Corsair is a really fantastic company. Everything about it was packaged well, built well, fairly easy to install. I'm just not sure I'd recommend a self contained water cooler for a more low key gorwn up kind of PC build especially if you are going to skip the side widow.

  • Cliff_ForsterCliff_Forster Icrontian
    edited September 2015

    I think if you are looking to go full ATX yet reduce size, The Define R4 should be on your short list. I have built in it and it is as quiet as they say. They come in variety too, you can go with black or white or with a little aluminum finish up front, window or not. And I can't stress how quiet those fractal stock fans are. Today the plain black version is on sale for $69 which pretty much puts it into impulse buy range.

    On the Corsair side is the 450D, that's a reasonable sized mid tower.

    I think you and I have a similar issue, I want to really shrink down my build, but like you are kind of AM3+ committed on the hardware. And since @Thrax started working for them they can't seem to figure out how to get their partners to produce one decent micro ATX let alone Mini ITX board for that socket ... and we could build Intel but that's freaking expensive so we just stick with our large cases. Shrinking the board even down to Micro ATX would give us a world of options that we don't have now though.

    Help us at Obi Wan @Thrax your'e our only hope. Call Gigabyte or something will ya. Tell them to make one AM3+ board in a smaller form factor that doesn't suck. There has to be a market for it.

  • @Cliff_Forster said:
    Corsair build quality in the Obsidian line is fantastic. The only thing negative I will say is that I have owned a couple in their Graphite line where the fan controllers fail continually. That said they have always been a pleasure to deal with, RMA process was pain free.

    I will add that the fan controller on my Obsidian 650D died after 2 years. Still would buy it again though.

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian

    The more I think about it, and now that the AMD Radeon R9 Nano seems to be pretty freakin' awesome, I might just consider going full mini-ITX.

    Are there good 990FX mini-ITX motherboards? I'd rather keep my CPU & Ram.

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian

    HAHAHA $650 NEVER MIND nope nope nope

  • ThraxThrax 🐌 Austin, TX Icrontian

    There are more mainstream GPUs in that FF. Consider the Sapphire 380 ITX, for example.

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian

    Ahh, that's much more approachable. Thanks!

  • Yeah but finding a mini itx AM3+ board is impossible as far as I know. Shame, wasted platform opportunity for AMD.

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian

    Damn :( I looked around and you appear to be right.

  • ThraxThrax 🐌 Austin, TX Icrontian
    edited September 2015

    The CPU architecture of AM3+ products does not include a south bridge, which takes up sufficient room on the mobo that mITX is not possible. MATX is feasible.

    Our next-gen CPU will remedy this.

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian


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