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  • jigglywiggly - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    I just bought a 30$ xigamatek pc case from newegg that craps all over this.

    This case is too small first of all.
    The xigamatek is fairly large, fits 3870x2 + 3870 in CF np, fits big heatsink.

    it has a hole to remove the heatsink from the tray so no need to take mobo out.

    Fits 630watt psu, totally tooless.

    30$!!
    This case is more than 3x the price and I would pick the xigamatek. It's also incredibly light so it's probably easier to transport.
    Reply
  • insurgent - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    The Xigmatek is also a boring steel case while this is made of brushed aluminum with superior build quality. The Xigmatek doesn't "crap" all over this, they belong in different market segments: those who are poor/cheap and those who appreciate nice things and have money to spare. Reply
  • james.jwb - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I had an A05nb that i cut a PSU 120mm hole for, and added a top panel identical to this one for a 140mm fan.

    It's a great looking case, there is no denying it, but it's quite flimsy. The aluminium is very thin, you get no extra features either. No good cable routing, no sound dampening. I just swapped it out for a Define R3 and it really shows how Lian Li seem to be falling behind on what is now standard on most cases.

    There is no other case like it though. If you what a great looks and a small footprint, it's as good as it gets, especially now it has those extra fan placements as standard, because my god, it needed it with my old 4890 installed :)

    With the right fans, it can definitely handle a 6970 setup fine, mine did.
    Reply
  • ckryan - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    The old version of this case is where it's at. I don't like the new version as much. Reply
  • Ben90 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I just found a piece of cardboard from the dumpster that craps all over the xigametek.

    That case is too small first of all.
    The cardboard is fairly large, fits Bitchin' Fast 3D 2000 in SLI np, fits autocascade.

    It has no fasteners anywhere so no need to take anything out.

    Fits a bin of extra computer parts, totally tooless.

    0$!!
    This case is more than infinite the price and I would pick the cardboard. It's also incredibly light so it's probably easier to transport.
    Reply
  • Gazziza - Sunday, December 18, 2011 - link

    "This case is too small first of all.
    The xigamatek is fairly large, fits 3870x2 + 3870 in CF np, fits big heatsink."

    You're obviously not the target market for this case then. The whole point is that this case is supposed to be smaller than most mid towers. Not everyone has the space to fit in a larger case. You're making an apples to orange comparison. This Lian-Li and your Xigmatek occupy different parts of the market.
    Reply
  • Iketh - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    Lian Li must have read my mind regarding HD temps. If you're using 5400-5900 rpm drives, they get far too cool with fans blowing directly on them (20-25C). The approach in this case alleviates that, but what happens to HD temps when you're running a full load on the cpu for several hours straight?? That heat is blowing right over the hard drives. I can't see how they won't reach at least 50C, especially if using 7200rpm. That front fan should just be an intake also and open the top cover. Reply
  • beginner99 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    plus with this design they are countering natural air flow (warm air is lighter) forcing it to flow down a bit. Inputs at the fronts bottom and top-rear exhaust makes more sense. Reply
  • Alecthar - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    The actual effect of convection for PC cases is usually overstated. Air, even warm air, is going to go where the fans draw it. There's also no reason to believe that "countering" the natural direction of air flow is in any way significant. Should you draw warm air over your HDDs? Maybe not, but that really has little to do with whether or not the case should be working with, or just ignoring, convection. Reply
  • Strunf - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Why do you say the HD get far too cool? as far as I know 25°C is the optimal temperature for all electronics devices. Reply
  • Iketh - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    http://static.googleusercontent.com/external_conte...

    Scroll down to figure 4 and 5. The sweet spot for hard drives is 35-45C, which makes sense since that's the temps they reach with very little air flow and probably the temps manufacturers tune their microscopic clearances.
    Reply
  • ckryan - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    I have the last revision of this case, and it's my favorite. It's sure as hell not for everyone, and maybe not even for many, but a few people such as myself love this case design. I love the aesthetic, and when fitted with the right components and some good case dampening material you get a quiet but good looking system. (It looks particularly good with the Samsung BD drives...). Some think of this case as a blank canvas, and I count myself among those.

    The last previous revisions have had no out of box top vent for the GPU area. That's pretty much my major complaint (but I enjoy the lack of exterior openings for noise to leak out). With the airflow of the rear intake you can run a good tower cooler passively if you so desire. Cable management is a nightmare do to the PSU placement being way too close to power connections on the motherboard itself. But I like the upside down motherboard placement and think it's a great system. GPUs face up, and as long as it can cope with cooling itself, it's awesome.

    Thank you for obtaining the new version of this case. I have a Lian Li V351 uATX case, and it's a strange but beautiful design. If you're willing to work with the enclosure, I think they're most satisfying, attractive, and quirky.
    Reply
  • Alecthar - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    It's a generally held belief among the Lian Li enthusiasts I know that the earlier revisions of this case (A05NB) are superior to the slightly more orthodox layout of this newer model. I certainly agree in principle (I can't speak to practice, as I don't currently own one0. Reply
  • Hrel - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    I really like the brushed aluminum minimalist looks of this. But it's too loud and too small. I'd really like a Fractal R3 except with this brushed aluminum exterior and no side grate, smooth everywhere. Some sound dampening foam would go a long way too. Also the reverse design is weird and wouldn't work for how I build rigs.

    All in all I love the aesthetics of this thing. But a micro-ATX case is as small as I can go, and then things get cramped. Reverse design = no good. Too loud.

    With all that said, I think there will be people who will really want this. I think it'd make a really nice looking HTPC case. As I've never been a fan of paying 150+ for a horizontal case with a wimpy power supply just so it can "look" like a receiver and not a computer. I'll never understand the market for those cases. What's wrong with just a regular PC tower?
    Reply
  • ckryan - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    I added AcoustiPak material to all of the interior surfaces and the inside of the front bezel. With a Noctua U12 SE2 cooler and a midrange GPU everything is great. The new USB3.0 revision has the 140mm top fan mount to reign in the GPU area heat. So multi gpu configurations are out, but with the right card you can have low noise and good temps... but it's a little challenging. I'm using a Seasonic X650 PSU, and it's always running in passive cooling mode (as a 2500K doesn't suck much juice even with a healthy OC).

    But seriously, it's not for everyone. I liked the case enough that I was willing to choose components that would work in the case, and I think it's the most attractive mid tower case around. I recommend something like a GTX460/560 that runs cool to begin with, and some designs are going to work better than others. But you don't have to worry about CPU tems, so to a certain extent it's okay if the case gets warm elsewhere.
    Reply
  • S0me1X - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    Like the previous poster, I have the previous version of this case. It is actually superior in terms of cooling (provided you upgrade the fan-less top panel with the 140-mm fan one). This way, you get directed airflow from bottom (cpu) of the case to the top (gpu). Alternatively, you can use one of these kits: http://www.lian-li.com/v2/en/product/product06.php... , which integrates well with both cases. Also, if you use the PCI cooling bracket, you should use a GPU heatsink which has no built in fan (Prolimatech MK13 is a great match for this).

    Another thing is: this case cools a lot better without the hard drive bracket. I'm only using the 5.25 bays (4 120gb ssds in a single bay:) ). So remove the hard drive bracket (also remove the hard drive fan) and have the PSU fan pointing upwards. Finally, replacing the bay covers with these http://www.lian-li.com/v2/en/product/product06.php... actually has a dramatic impact.

    What I am getting at is this case requires some simple (tool-less) modifications to really shine. What you get is a compact (but fits full size mobo) all aluminum (light and elegant) case for a very good price.
    Reply
  • S0me1X - Wednesday, December 07, 2011 - link

    I'd like to add that I would probably try reversing the fans in the revision used in your review. In other words, have the back/top fans exhaust and don't use the front fan at all. Remove the hard drive bay and install the PCI cooling bracket. Reply
  • Stuka87 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I am not digging on this case. I love aluminum cases, but this case is too short. The video card goes into the hard drive area.

    And I dont case for the air intake. Far too much resistance which means that intake fan most likely ends up pulling in air from the case, rather than from outside the case.

    It needs to be about an inch longer, and have a larger air intake from that front fan.
    Reply
  • tzhu07 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Just read (skimmed) through this. I like the elegance of Lian Li, however their cases are not the best for noise control.

    I recently ordered parts for a build on Newegg, and I considered lots of Lian Li's for microATX, but in the end I chose the Fractal Design Define Mini. It's not too big and not too small, and most of all was built with silence in mind. Can't wait to assemble it together.
    Reply
  • Beenthere - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    ...poor design throughout. "Just because you can doesn't mean you should", sums up this design precisely. This is usually the result of looking for sales by being weird and it actually works sometimes. Reply
  • know of fence - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Every case I ever opened had this empty room in the lower front, where only tumble weeds of dusts are blowing, maybe you'll find a dropped drive screw there, or a stray cable. Sometimes you'll even spot a speaker (beeper) from the old days...

    It's the most logical and consequential thing to stick a power supply there, even if you have to reroute the power cable.
    Reply
  • Beenthere - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    PSUs are intentionally mounted in the upper back of a case as that's where the heat is that the PSU fan evacuates. Basic engineering 101. Reply
  • Luumpy - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Ya thats the worst possible place for a psu(Top of case) . It sucks in hot air from the rest of pc. Just dumb.
    Your clearly NOT an engineer.
    Most high end cases put psu at bottom of case, where its cool.
    Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Really splitting hairs here. The old ATX design says for the PSU to be in the top/back, because the air flow is from the lower/front, once over all components and then out the back . It was designed in old times when PCs used below 100W. Then came 100W CPUs and 300W graphics cards and things changed a bit.

    You cannot say that a PSU _must_ be at the top/back. However, you are just as wrong to say that it is a dumb place for it to be because of sucking in hot air. You can put it in the bottom. You can also put it in the top and turn it upside down (TJ08-E).

    Mostly, it doesn't matter nowadays as PSUs get ever more efficient, more and more becoming quieter and even semi-passive to the point where their exhaust ability is negligible and their need to be cooled also diminishes. And people with beefy hardware have one or two 120/140mm exhaust fans anyway.

    To the original poster: This design didn't really win any space by the positioning of the PSU. Also, a lot of modern designs use that space for HDDs, drives bays, larger fans and other interesting things. Depending on the usage scenario, dead space can be used quite effectively (water cooling, where you need space for a pump and a reservoir for example).
    Reply
  • crackedwiseman - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I made a build for a client of mine back in early 2009 using an earlier model of this case - the significant difference was the motherboard tray was "upside down", with the CPU being on the bottom and the GPU being on top. It performed spectacularly; the build was an overclocked i7-920 and a GTX 260, with a pair of 3.5" HDDs.

    Yes, it's cramped - thats the price of a small case. But (the older models at least) could handle pretty much any high-end single GPU system; this isn't made for gaming rigs, it's made to cram a powerful work machine into as little space as possible, which can be appealing depending on the availability of office space.
    Reply
  • johnsmith9875 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    It has a hot spot at the top of the case. I use a slot cooler to take the heat that the video card generates and get it out of the box, otherwise it would cook anything near the top of the case.
    Because the cover on the front obstructs airflow I keep it off in the summer. In winter it seems to be adequately ventilated.

    What it needs is a blowhole in the top.
    Reply
  • Chuck_NC - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Interesting to read the reviews. As an engineer, there are some obvious points to make. I doubt that the HDD temps going higher are intentional, but a byproduct of goofing the airflow around the front. With the PSU blowing out, the HDD fan just pulls the hot exhaust right back in again. The PSU and HDD fans end up recirculating the air. They should reverse the direction of the HDD fan to blow out, and provide positive pressure from other fans going *into* the case (side fan, back, etc.). Would drop all temps, especially those in the front of the case. Anyway you do this, the HDDs are going to be warmer though.

    By moving the PSU from the typical top over the CPU area over to the front bottom, there is much less air being drawn out of the top back of the case, causing a hot spot area. Again, a side intake fan would help that but at the expense of noise and an added fan, which also adds less reliability (fans fail faster than any other PC part).

    I would guess that whoever designed this was looking more at aesthetics and less at airflow, but some minor changes fixes the airflow problems. And the blowhole idea is great - but add some air going into the case somewhere else.
    Reply
  • Kepe - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    You didn't read the article. Air is sucked in by the rear fan, and exhausted by the front fan. Also, the typical place for the PSU has changed from the top back position to the bottom back position over the last, say, five years. I haven't seen cases with the PSU in the top back position for years. Reply
  • Iketh - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Warmer HDD temps are good up to about 45-50C. The problem is HDs running too cool with intakes blowing right on them (below 30C). Reply
  • TwistedKestrel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I pulled the trigger on this case when there weren't too many reviews out there. I laughed at the picture of the mess of cables - it made me feel better about not being able to figure out a good way to route pretty much everything.

    I still like it though. The cooling idea may not have paid off, but it hasn't seriously impacted my ability to overclock. The finish is nice, it's reasonably quiet ... better than a fork in the eye. Would I have bought if I'd seen this review first? Probably not!
    Reply
  • MadMan007 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Lian-Li cases always seem to have too large dimensions. I know for this example the depth is because of the front-mounted PSU and the height is short for being able to fit a full ATX motherboard, but this observation holds for many Lian-Li cases. Theyt always seem to be rediculous in one dimension which throws off much of the appeal.

    What I would love to see is the same case in an mATX version. Place the PSU below or above the motherboard and reduce the excessive length from 20" to about 16". That would be a nice-looking and functional mATX case.
    Reply
  • renosablast - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    What is the point of reviewing a product assembled with components that it is clearly not designed to handle? Your testbed is obviously not a one-size-fits all proposition either. You cannot pass judgement on a particular design when you start off deviating from that design. How about a re-review assembled with the components it is designed for? Reply
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    If we take a lesser setup (maybe a 6870 GPU, a smaller PSU, and change out the CPU while we're at it), power and heat and noise all go down. That doesn't necessarily tell us much about cases other than that lower end equipment doesn't require as much cooling. Our rationale with the test configuration was to put together a reasonably high-end setup without going overkill. The GTX 580 is a fast GPU and more than what a lot of users need, but at the same time I know I wasn't happy with my single HD 5870 and I'm doing much better with a 580.

    Even without testing lower end hardware, the inclusion of both stock and overclocked testing gives us a good idea of how a solution scales. The idle noise, temps, and power will only drop marginally while load will be somewhere in between. The PSU will have better clearance, which we don't even need to test. Basically, the point of a standardized testbed is exactly that: to have a standard. Changing the standard would change the results, but you can compare the cases regardless. It doesn't "invalidate" anything.
    Reply
  • renosablast - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Sorry, Jarred, I beg to differ. What a reviewer has to remember is that the perception of the READER of the review is what is important. A READER looks at a review to decide if a product performs AS IT IS DESIGNED and FOR THE PURPOSE IT IS DESIGNED; not for a comparison of how well it works with obviously above-the-design-level components.

    No computer builder or enthusiast in their right mind is going to consider stuffing a case such as this with components the likes of the test bed used. To do so to satisfy your own curiosity is one thing; to consider it a "review" of the product is quite a stretch and lacks VALIDITY.

    That's my story and I am sticking to it!
    Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Except that knowing that it CAN handle these components (albeit with work) suggests that it should perform much better with a component selection much more appropriate to it. I've given you the information you need by going above it.

    And as far as I'm concerned, the individual perceptions of the readers (which can vary wildly) isn't important to me. What is important is producing a review that is fair, understands what the hardware being reviewed is intended for, and as factual as possible. I can't tell everyone what they want to know, but I can tell most of you what you NEED to know.
    Reply
  • 996GT2 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    This case is one of the smallest ATX cases you can buy, and you can really fit a whole lot in there if you do some research beforehand. Of course it's not for everyone, but then again, not everyone is a case enthusiast.

    With regard to GPUs: you can mount any GPU you want to in there if you remove the hard drive bay. I am using a 11.5" Gigabyte GTX 570 Windforce without any issues. I have a DVD drive, 3.5" HDD, and 2.5" SSD in the 5.25" bays.

    All of your concerns about GPU cooling would be alleviated if Lian Li included a side intake by default. I cut a side intake on my A05NB (the last revision of this case, with the inverted design), and GPU temperatures are excellent.

    Lastly, I wish Lian Li didn't ditch the inverted ATX design with this new revision. The older inverted design had a number of benefits, such as:

    1) No chance of PSU blocking any SATA ports
    2) Intake fan at the rear is placed lower than exhaust fan in the front, allowing hot air to rise
    3) Room for a radiator at the top or bottom of the case.
    4) If you have a liquid cooling system on the CPU and it leaks, it won't leak onto the GPU because the GPU is located above the CPU in the A05NB.
    Reply
  • cjs150 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    The old design resulted is some truly beautiful water-cooled mods - I only wish I was half as talented.

    The inverted ATX design worked really well.

    Lian Li go back to the old design but with the following changes:

    1. More room behind the motherboard tray
    2. Bit more space (as per Fractal Arc mini) up top so radiator fits comfortably
    3. I like the front mounted PSU concept but experiment with it being across width of case not the normal way, there are two ways of doing that, intake fan on bottom or intake fan facing front of case. Big advantages are, much cleaner cable routing and much more space at bottom of case (ideal for pumps, SSDs
    4. Not sure we really need 2x 5.1/4 and a 3.5 external bay. Any chance of cutting one out and increasing size of front fan (nice location for front mounted radiator)
    Reply
  • Stas - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Used it on 3 or 4 builds. Very nice case. It is a bit thin for my liking. However, I wouldn't hesitate to use it on my own rig, if I didn't have 5 HDDs, 2 optical drives and 4 expansion cards in the mobo. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I have to say that reading the reviews of small enclousures on AT is always something. You manage to point out the difficulties of those cases, but i often get the feeling that Most people who choose a small case for potent hardware already know the limitations anderen build around them. still, great to see reviews of more normal (read : sub-150) cases, since i dont think you need to spend a lot on a case even if you use expensive components . :-) Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Typing on a smartphone with German dictionary in the background messes things up. Hope it's still readable. :D Reply
  • ShieTar - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    This is a strange thermal design indeed. It seems the engineers at Lian Li were trying to get the best CPU cooling possible, without too much care about what that will do to the GPU.

    Sounds as if it could give you a nice, silent workstation with a high-power CPU and On-Chip graphics. Sadly, in my personal experience, most business buyers don't seem to care too much about the noise that their employees will have to suffer from their machienes, and just go straight for the cheapest offer.

    Still, it would be interesting too see a comparison of this box and a more classical competitor when filled with this kind of business setup instead of your standard, more gaming centered, testbed.
    Reply
  • Touche - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Aluminum cases have a big drawback. They tend to hum due to HDD vibrations. It'not (as) noticable if you have loud fans, but it's terrible with quiet computers. Reply
  • bji - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I have this case and this doesn't happen to mine. No humming. Also my fans are almost never running; it's a quiet computer.

    Why is aluminum more susceptible than steel anyway? What's the science behind your statement?
    Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Mass (weight) is a great noise insulator. And steel has a greater mass than alu. So usually, steel has better acoustic qualities. Using that to translate "all alu cases are worse than others" is not right. Reply
  • ckryan - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I put a lot of mass on the panels with the acoustic dampening material, and it's totally worth it. But I didn't have any humming or vibrations beforehand. Reply
  • piroroadkill - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Sideways 3.5" drive bays. Having them facing the board is just way too cluttered. With the immense width of this case, you'd think they'd have much better cable routing options behind the motherboard tray, too. Reply
  • darkhawk1980 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I don't have the case, and it's difficult to really know if it would fit or work, but would it be possible to modify the side panel and add in a 80mm or 120mm fan that could blow air in near the air inlet on the GPU? Specifically, perhaps, placing one right near the back (or front, depending on your viewpoint) of the GPU, and placing it between the end of the GPU and the HDD caddy's? This might improve both the GPU temperatures and the SSD temperatures, although I'm not sure if it would help or hinder the other temperatures inside the case. This would also help to provide a positive internal pressure (looks like 1 inlet fan at the back, and 2 outlet fans [power supply exhaust + front 120mm fan exhaust]) which is definitely a good thing. Reply
  • MadAd - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Ive given up giving up on these cases with creative item rearrangements. It never works, weve had ATX for 10+ years and if there was a good configuration to be found, wed have it already.

    Why dont the manufacturers start calling for a smaller redesign? Optical Disks and Power Supplies are limiting shrinking the box atm, but ask for a smaller power supply atm and people grimace with the mutterings of 1U on their lips. Mobos can always be smaller, all electronics can, but no one seems to have any will to do it.

    If consoles pads and laptops are 'taking over' standard pcs, then its time to do it...most home users dont need more than a slim client, with space usually going to ppl with many HDD (nas box anyone?) or large gfx arrays.

    IM sure atx wont just disappear tho, enthusiasts that need the space can use it, but we really need to deal with this size thing to move the PC into the living room.
    Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I don't see the shortage of small enclosures, be they ITX or mATX, in the last few years. There are quite a lot of cases that offer what you describe, with SFX PSUs for moderately powerful gaming rigs or external pico PSUs for mid to high-end CPU+iGPU configurations.
    And there there is also the AIO becoming increasingly powerful and cheap.

    ATX will always be around because a lot of people don't want to pay the premium for the smaller size and they just hide the case. Or they actually need the space. I don't see how anything huge has to change though, as there are products for everyones purposes. :-)
    Reply
  • MadAd - Sunday, December 11, 2011 - link

    "a lot of people don't want to pay the premium for the smaller size"

    exactly!

    so until the market moves to a new standard, anything that isnt atx is going to have a premium on it..its dragging the platform as a whole down
    Reply
  • ArteTetra - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I think this case was designed to be put in a piece of furniture. Hot air is expelled from the front because furniture is usually closed on the back. The compact size also fits this role.
    I guess there are people who could be very interested in this.
    Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    If the back is closed, where would the case get the cool air it needed? You need 2 sides to be relatively unobstructed in order to ensure good temperatures and noise. It really doesn't matter if it's front to back or vice versa if the rest is similar. :-) Reply
  • geniekid - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    "the overarching theme is that people want an enclosure that reminds them of the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey."

    Lol! So true. Myself included.
    Reply
  • NINaudio - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    we could get a review of the lancool PC-K9? That looks like a very interesting case and I'd love to see how it stacks up. Reply
  • bji - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    This case is not for everyone. It is smaller and has weaker cooling characteristics than other cases. It works perfectly for my setup, which is a Phenom II 1075T, SSD drives, a high-end aftermarket heatsink and 120mm fan CPU cooler, a singe low-speed quiet 120 mm case fan at the back, motherboard, and nothing else (no dedicated GPU, I just use the crappy one on the motherboard, I don't do any gaming whatsoever). My whole system stays as cool as I could want.

    So if your cooling needs are moderate, this case is fine.

    I personally appreciate the fact that it doesn't look like a big plastic piece of crap with weird angles, holes, and plastic extrusions everywhere. It looks classy and understated. The aluminum is thin like someone said but I find it to be strong and durable enough.

    The *only* quibble I have is that the lid for the top USB ports/audio ports is kind of cheaply made. It has sharp edges and the hinge protrudes out of the top surface. It would be nicer if it was flush somehow, it would fit the smooth surfaces of the case better.
    Reply
  • 8steve8 - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    who needs a full size atx motherboard anymore???

    ... and by that, almost no one needs a full size atx case.

    this case might be worth looking at if it was microatx
    Reply
  • Death666Angel - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Pretty much my thoughts these days. Only reason to go full ATX these days is insane enthusiast builds or shaving off a few bucks. Reply
  • zhadlp - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    for that size, its more suited for an matx build... and I'd still prefer my A04 compared to this one, they both have belong to the same price point I think.

    easy to mod too... :)
    http://www.techpowerup.com/gallery/2983.html
    Reply
  • CZroe - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    Not one single shot of the front with a PSU installed with the faceplate removed? I was curious about how far the thing protruded and wondered if the PSU was inset a bit to compensate for that. Reply
  • shakyone - Thursday, December 08, 2011 - link

    I purchased the original one of these, four years ago. It has been sitting in my kitchen, quietly humming away, always on.

    The beauty of this thing is that it just looks "classy" and simple. It is very tiny, yet it fits a full size ATX motherboard! Seriously people, this baby can fit a fully loaded system, and look petite doing it. If you want to put a PC out where it doesn't need to draw attention, this is the case to do it. It doesn't draw any attention to itself in the process, that was the goal.

    As reported, yes it runs hot. I scaled back from a high end graphics card for a Radeon 5770, that ran cool. I also have to be careful when picking parts, because it is small.

    I'm waiting for the price to drop on this version, and I'm pulling the trigger, as an upgrade. The Lian-Li quality, really closed the deal. I was able to get all matching Lian-Li accessories, and it keeps it diminutive appearance. I get that they are not the best of the best, but they work very well, and look like the belonged there all along. They have more matching case accessories than I think any other manufacturer, and it is worth it, for me.

    You can do a lot with this one, that is its secret!
    Reply
  • nubie - Saturday, December 10, 2011 - link

    I would rather have a case that is smaller in the front-to-back dimension, even at the cost of a little height.

    Actually, a dream would be the GTR3 (it can hold a full-atx motherboard and a dual-slot video card, and it is as small as many an ITX case.)

    If only the GTR3 was easier to install and work with, but you can't have everything.
    Reply
  • owdi - Saturday, December 10, 2011 - link

    The author missed an key feature of this case - it is one of the shortest ATX cases on the market.

    I bought the previous version of this case because it fits inside the center channel compartment of a http://detonator.dynamitedata.com/cgi-bin/redirect...">Techcraft SWP60 TV stand. Just barely. You have to install it through the back and it does stick out by 3 inches.
    Reply
  • owdi - Saturday, December 10, 2011 - link

    That link to amazon didn't work an I can't figure out how to edit my post. blah Reply
  • MadAd - Sunday, December 11, 2011 - link

    short, long, when the area is about the same its all fiddling around the edges of a tired market long overdue an overhaul Reply
  • Tigashark - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    Agree with the other commentors... the Inverted design worked far better with the old A05N which I happen to own. The old design has the motherboard mounted in a way that the CPU is on the bottom, airflow is from the rear to front and the system keeps plenty cool .

    It *will* fit a full 11.5 inch graphics card in it which ends up sitting behind the bottom optical bays which are rarely used.

    Im not sure why LianLi changed this design.. its main advantage is it was a very small formfactor that can fit any graphics card, while remaining light and portable (and looking GREAT) .

    They should have changed the model number to avoid customer confusion as the "Old" A05N is far better...
    Reply

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