Case

Dec 11 2013

Review - Fractal Design ARC MINI R2 Micro-ATX Mid Tower Chassis

Fractal Design ARC MINI R2
Over the last few years Fractal Design has cultivated a reputation for delivering intelligent, quiet, and well-built PC cases that do not require breaking the bank. With solid steel construction, ample storage options, and three hydraulic bearing  Silent Series R2 fans (2x 120mm, 1x 140mm) included, we should expect the ARC MINI R2 Micro-ATX case to continue this tradition. However it is natural to wonder if Fractal Design can deliver the innovative features of its larger, more expensive, chassis at the smaller enclosure’s $99 price point. Let’s find out.

Jul 08 2012

Review - Wesena ITX5

Wesena ITX5Boasting clean lines, the right look, and solid construction for Mini-ITX based systems the Wesena ITX5 all-aluminum enclosure offers capabilities very similar to the ITX7; by removing optical drive support in a slightly lower cost ($80) package. Building a name for quality takes time and attention to feedback, so it was fantastic to examine the generational differences between the two small form-factor (SFF) home theater PC (HTPC) chassis from Wesena. As a refinement on the previous iteration we hope to see the niggles around fit-and-finish addressed.

Mar 06 2012

Review - nMEDIAPC HTPC 7000B Micro-ATX / Mini-ITX HTPC Case

nMEDIAPC HTPC 7000nMEDIAPC has made a name for itself in the home theater PC (HTPC) community for consistently delivering well-built, good-looking, and reasonably-priced chassis comfortable in the A/V stack. Offering a brushed aluminum front panel and a street price of $80, at first glance the HTPC 7000B seems to carry on this tradition. Coupled with two 120mm fans, we should expect excellent cooling from this full-height enclosure, but with a depth of just over twelve inches there are sure to be trade-offs where the form factor is both an asset and a liability; keep reading to find out how this case measures up.

Jan 26 2012

Review - Lian Li PC-90 HPTX Chassis

Whether you are building a gaming rig, a general purpose desktop, a home server, or even a home theater PC (HTPC), the case you choose will vary greatly depending on your personal needs and taste. Recently, I was given the opportunity to review the Lian Li PC-90 full tower desktop case. While this may not be the HTPC case for many, it has some unique qualities about it that make it a compelling choice for housing a full size HTPC or Windows Home Server.
Over the years, Lian Li has produced some of the most sleek, modern, high-quality computer cases I have seen to date, and the Lian Li lives up to all the previous builds and then some. One of the great things about the Lian Li PC-90 is its compact form factor that still allows for a full MTX, or even larger HPTX motherboards, while not sacrificing a large, over-sized case.
Jul 05 2011

Review - Fractal Designs Define R3

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When selecting the perfect chassis to serve content to the audio/video stack a different set of attributes is required than what is typically demanded from a home theater PC (HTPC) enclosure.  The ideal server must be able to scale to support multiple hard drives, keep everything cool and not sound like a shop-vac in the process.  With eight 3.5” hard drive trays, seven fan mounts, sound absorbing material included and a convenient layout Fractal Designs’ Define R3 enclosure looks good, and has the specifications to warrant consideration.

Jun 22 2011

Review - Habey EMC-600B SFF Chassis

The quest for the perfect home theater PC (HTPC) case is always a challenge even in today’s world where there is a healthy amount of chassis to choose from in all shapes and sizes. While some people prefer an HTPC chassis which stands out in their A/V stack there are plenty of people that want something quiet, subtle and most importantly--tiny. Fortunately for those fans there have been a number of small form factor (SFF) chassis which we have looked at recently which make the choice that much easier.

The Wesena ITX7, HDPlex H10.ODD and Vidabox vCase3 are all great cases with a direct focus on HTPC aesthetics and each has their pros and cons. The one con almost always present when discussing HTPC chassis is PRICE--SFF chassis with home theater A/V focused designs are frequently over the $100 price range, not including the power supply. What Habey is offering in their EMC-600B enclosure is a stylish aluminum SFF chassis for mini-ITX only that occupies a tiny footprint with a nice appearance to fit just as appropriately in your A/V stack as in your bedroom--and it includes a power supply, all for under $70.

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