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  • Saketai - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Very interesting times in the Mini-ITX world.

    Now if only these were on Newegg...
    Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    The best place to get BitFenix cases in the states right now is NCIXUS.com. NewEgg, for some reason, just refuses to carry BitFenix stuff. Reply
  • crimson117 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Probably can't agree on volume / pricing details. Reply
  • Taft12 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    When your stuff's not on Newegg, there *IS* no volume. Pressure from customers on both parties will get the deal done though.

    NCIXUS is a fine alternative in the meantime (a fine alternative all the time, actually). Does Tiger Direct carry Bitfenix?
    Reply
  • crimson117 - Tuesday, June 12, 2012 - link

    It's there now, fwiw: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8... Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Wow. That store slipped under the radar. I've been buying parts for years and had never heard of it. Reply
  • VoraciousGorak - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I'll probably be corrected here in a moment, but I *think* they were Canada only for a long time, only recently opening a United States-servicing website. They are definitely worth a look, I've bought a few things from there. Reply
  • randinspace - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    There's one issue with shopping from us.NCIX.com that's either a minor curiosity or an extreme annoyance depending on your perspective and/or situation: because they're a Canadian company doing business in America (even shipping out of California...) they SOMEHOW raise red flags with certain bank/credit card companies' anti-fraud units when you buy from them using a credit card. NCIX (hilariously) informs you of this snafu during the order process/on their site so I wasn't blindsided, and I think they take paypal which would presumably be a solution, but there's nothing like wrangling with the completely automated anti-fraud process of your bank at 10 in the morning when you're trying to get something else done.

    On the bright side they purport to be working on a solution to that issue (getting a US bank account? Having enough people tell their banks that they actually placed an order with them?), and from time to time they have sales on things people actually want (as opposed to Rosewill adaptor kits, items with MIRs that will never be fulfilled, and refurbished <320GB HDDs) that put Newegg to shame.
    Reply
  • Guspaz - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    They're one of if not the biggest online computer stores in Canada (been around since 1996). There are a bunch of sister companies that operate separate stores like DIrectCanada, BestDirect, etc.

    I can't speak to their US service, but they're not a small fly-by-night. They're basically the Canadian equivalent of NewEgg (other than NewEgg Canada, obviously).
    Reply
  • anactoraaron - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    In Newegg's defense, they are really trying to sell watches and power tools... wtf happened to the 'egg anyway?? Reply
  • Zoomer - Saturday, June 09, 2012 - link

    They got IPOed Reply
  • Norseman4 - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Currently it's nowhere, even us.ncix.com as listing the case as "not yet available", but you can pre-order. (Shipping mid June. 79.99 w/ free shipping)

    Additionally, NewEgg looks like they will carry it, since they have placeholders (out-of-stock, Image coming soon, that sort of thing) for both the blank and the white case. (Currently showing 79.99 w/ 15.88 shipping)

    Other retailers may also carry it since the BitFenix site shows 9 resellers, but does not include the 'Egg
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, June 03, 2012 - link

    While Newegg does a ton of enthusiast business, I'd say BitFenix would be happier to get their stuff on Amazon first. *Everyone* has heard of Amazon; Newegg is big, but not quite that big. Reply
  • Zoomer - Saturday, June 09, 2012 - link

    They could just do that themselves right now by shipping a bunch to amazon under the fulfilled by amazon program. Reply
  • oDii - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    As someone who regrets building a WHS box in an fully populated Lian Li PC-Q08, this looks like they were so close to getting it right! Just needed one more 3.5" drive bay. To be honest, it looks like there's a decent amount of room between the drive bays, so I'm surprised they didn't just reduce that and increase the available bays... Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    You need more than five? Theoretically you can pop another one in the 5.25" bay, or alternatively, switch to 2.5" drives depending on your capacity needs. Reply
  • Streetwind - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    There's actually a ton more drive bays in there than it looks like. If you wanted to go all out, you could mount, all at the same time:

    - Five 3.5" drives in the HDD cages
    - One 2.5" drive in a mounting bracket below the bottom HDD cage
    - Two 2.5" drives in mounting brackets between the bottom HDD cage and the power supply bay
    - Two 2.5" drives in mounting brackets on the right side panel
    - Four 2.5" drives in a (third party) 5.25-to-2.5 adapter in place of the optical drive

    So yeah, while you can't do a RAID with six 3.5" drives, that's still a hell of a lot of storage for a mini-ITX case.
    Reply
  • tjoynt - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Just curious: why do you regret using the Lian Li PC-Q08? Or do you regret using WHS? ;) Reply
  • oDii - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    WHS V1 is fine for slow, slightly protected storage.

    My problem with the PC-Q08 is that once you start loading it up - lots of disks, standard ATX sized PSU (maybe slightly longer due to modular cables) - there just isn't enough room for everything. At the moment after the last time I took everything out of it, I put the HDD activity cable around the wrong way - and still haven't corrected because of how much of a pain opening it and accessing even small things in it is.

    Perhaps to even slightly talk against my own argument of "needs more drive bays!"; the Q08 stacks the drives so close together that the cable between the SATA power connector leads becomes a major cable management problem - if it sticks out too much, you can't put the case back together. Similarly, you're pretty much forced to use 90 degrees rotated SATA data cables as standard cables would break the plastic supports of the drives they're attached to long before you managed to wrestle the side panel back on.

    The positive thing about the Prodigy is that it seems like they've really got that general accessibility down with the rotated motherboard tray, as Dustin mentions on page 3.

    I guess this case would be great for someone dabbling with ZFS - few disks, and a few locations for ZFS cache/ZIL.
    Reply
  • sheltem - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Too bad the Lian Li Q25 was released afterwards. It's a bit taller, but not as wide, because it ditches the dvd drives and has 5 hot swap hard drive bays. The side panels comes off easier. Reply
  • Guspaz - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    I ended up buying the Lian-Li LanCool PC-K12 and putting some hotswap bays in it; it holds 15x3.5" drives. I also have 2x2.5" drives in there for boot, but that's kind of a kludge, since they're not mounted to anything except a 2.5" to 3.5" adapter that is loose in the case. Still, that many SATA cables in a case, the drive sled isn't budging. Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I Don't know why he doesn't like it but I didn't use the Li PC-Q08 because I was building a WHS and didn't need a optical drive or a big fan in front. The LIAN LI PC-Q25B has 5 hot swop bays and allows you to install 2 or 3 at the bottom of the case. I'm currently running 5 drives in mine 5 3.5 drives and 1 SSD. Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Try the LIAN LI PC-Q25B Thats what I used for my WHS. Reply
  • Synomenon - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    So when are these going to be available for purchase in the US? Is it too late for Bitfenix to take recommendations and critiques from reviews to improve the case before making it available for purchase? Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    It's already available at NCIX's US site.

    http://us.ncix.com/search/?q=bitfenix+prodigy
    Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    My bad, that's just a preorder. Reply
  • LOUiECOG - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    If you click on it, it actually says they have some in stock. I'm not sure if they'll send it to you right away or not since it states preorder. But they do say they have it in stock. Reply
  • xbournex - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    It'll be available early July guys, and we're laying the eggs down pretty soon around that time as well! Reply
  • B3an - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    It's nice to see a case that doesn't look like a piece of shit, as if a 10 year old designed it or someone stuck some random plastic parts together with glue. Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Have you seen the Cubitek Mini Tank. Reply
  • B3an - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    LOL! Thats exactly what i'm talking about. Thats one seriously ugly case, but SO many PC cases often look like that. Reply
  • piroroadkill - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Very nice. I love the idea of a small machine being very powerful, yet fully DIY and standard. Lovely case.. Reply
  • EnzoFX - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    No pics with the card installed?

    This case's basic design is one I've been asking for a long time now. Glad someone finally did it. The great price just throws it over the top. Wish there was a silver version =P.
    Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Unfortunately, only black and white versions. :| It really is an awesome case, though. Reply
  • Daller - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I wish some of these "bigger" ITX cases would be tested with proper hardware.

    This case is obviously designed with bigger tower coolers in mind. Shove an i7-3770K in there at 4.5 GHz and a high-end GPU instead of this mainstream stuff.

    A SFX powersupply in a case designed for ATX PSU - who on earth would ever do that?

    'nuff said.
    Reply
  • Daller - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    They got the idea:
    http://www.caseking.de/shop/catalog/images/product...
    Reply
  • Menty - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    "A SFX powersupply in a case designed for ATX PSU - who on earth would ever do that?"

    Someone who was unable to fit in an ATX PSU, as is the case here? :P
    Reply
  • Daller - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    He tried with a modular PSU - they require more space. High quality non-modular PSU are readily available - and better than any SFX unit i know of. Reply
  • xbournex - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    160mm PSU's will fit. As with all PSU's, each company will use different thickness cables. Some will use thin black cables with no color, some will use sleeving bundled together to make huge inflexible cables. Reply
  • DragonMantis - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Does installing the dedicated GPU require removal of the middle drive cage? How long a card can be accommodated? Reply
  • xbournex - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Yes. It can fit 330mm cards. Reply
  • 7amood - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I would love to see anandtech review of silverstone SG08 Reply
  • Termie - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    My problem right off the bat with this case is that its dimensions (9.84" x 15.9" x 14.1") are almost identical to the Temjin: 15.16" x 8.27" x 14.72". Sure, the handles make it taller than it really is, but ultimately, the case is just too big. It is both wider and deeper than the Temjin. I just can't see a reason for going with this case if you're trying to be compact. Reply
  • Termie - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Sorry - upon looking at the pictures again, it seems it's not deeper than the Temjin, but actually taller (hard to match up those dimensions). Either way, it sure is wide! Reply
  • Olaf van der Spek - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    How well is the Prodigy doing with the 560 Ti vs a regular mATX case?
    You just say: "Thermals for the Prodigy are still quite good, but the 560 Ti does push it a little." but some more words wouldn't hurt. The cooling in the Prodigy shouldn't be worse than in a mATX case IMO.
    Reply
  • Taft12 - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    On the contrary, I think the short depth with front/back 120mm fans and "tunnel" for air to travel through front-to-back will provide BETTER cooling than most mATX cases.

    A terrific design worthy of the Editor's Choice award!
    Reply
  • MichaelD - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Case is great except for the feet. They let the designer people overrule the engineering people, which is usually not a good idea. Yes; the top handles are symmetrical with the bottom feet. And the case will tip over if you try to set it down on carpet. The "feet" have rounded edges which will just encourage the case to fall on it's side should you accidentally bump it. I can work around every other "negative" or shortcoming this nice case has, except the feet. That makes it a failure in my book. Side note: All that mesh ventilation looks nice on paper. Two weeks after building your system you'll be vacuuming dust out of that mesh on a weekly basis if you want the thing to run cool. Reply
  • snajk138 - Sunday, June 03, 2012 - link

    It looks like you can take them off.

    http://i46.tinypic.com/2h8b9lv.jpg
    Reply
  • zcat - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    This BitFenix is a nice case that certainly would've been on my shortlist a few weeks ago, but I think I still would have gone with the slightly more expensive ($99) Lian Li PC-Q11A case that I did choose, as it's much prettier (all alluminum) and more minimal-looking.

    CPU: i7-3770S (65W)
    MB: Asus P8H77-I
    PSU: SeaSonic SS-300ET 300W 80+
    RAM: 16GB DDR3 1600
    SSD: 256GB Samsung 830
    HDDs: 2x 2TB 5900rpm in RAID1
    HSF: Xigmatek CAC-D9HH4-U02 PRAETON (one of the few that would fit, and quieter than stock)

    It went together quite easily, except for a few minor problems:
    1) Lian-li still uses a 3-pin connector for the power-led, so you have to re-pin it for 2.
    2) Had to order the rarer "left-angle" sata cables in order to connect the HDD sitting directly above the SSD on the drive cage.
    3) The side panel is attached with 8 tiny screws instead of 2 quick thumb screws like my previous full-ATX and micro-ATX LianLi's, but mini-itx cases are rarely opened anyway.

    Without the 2 HDDs, the system idles at just ~29W, and with at ~41W. Under full load it sucks ~118W so there's still headroom for me to add a 75W PCIe-powered card down the road (waiting on nvidia's more efficient mid/low-end kepler cards).

    If I had no plans to upgrade from intel's integrated HD4000 to a full-length/full-height/double-width card, I probably would've chosen the MUCH SMALLER Antec ISK110 case instead (same case used in pugetsystems 'overpriced' builds).

    Anyway... I guess this turned into a mini-itx mini-review of my own. Thanks Anandtech - looking forward to more mini & micro-ATX reviews as full-ATX fades to the fringes.
    Reply
  • mars2k - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Enter the poster child for Chinese plagiarism. All the positives aside, I would never buy a product that was a cheap copy of an iconic industrial design like a Mac Pro…and it’s blue.

    Take all the careful design in the world and wrap it in a blatant counterfeit skin..voila…worthless.
    Reply
  • Peter_s - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I bought in 2004 this case. Looks like a MacPro? Not realy. But it is keeps my stuff cool.
    I removed the lower handle (stand). The cas had not a good stand with it. As one posted the Bitfenix lacks stability too.

    P.S. I own a lot of Apple's hardware too. Simply for convenience ;-)

    But will I (you) buy a MacProCase and do all fiddling to fit a PC in? I will go this route.

    Probably I will buy th Bitfenix and remove the handle the plastic stand immediatly.
    Reply
  • Peter_s - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Oops
    got this case in 2004 (MacPro inspired)

    http://www.caseumbau.de/test263/bild002.jpg
    Reply
  • Guspaz - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I recently bought a Shuttle SZ77R5 (apparently one of the first Shuttle XPC units to support replacing the mobo with a mini ITX mobo). One of my friends kept insisting that it was, at $340, supremely overpriced. On the other hand, it's not just a case, it also comprises a motherboard, power supply, and CPU cooler (although I won't count that since Intel CPUs come with one free).

    So, how expensive is it, relatively speaking? I'll compare the cost of a similarly built BitFenix:

    BitFenix Prodigy: $79
    80+ bronze PSU: $65
    Asus Z77 mini-itx mobo: $200

    The mobo is expensive, but NewEgg only sells two mini ITX Z77 models. The other one is cheaper, but neither of these have as much connectivity options as the Shuttle (neither has 4 DIMM slots, a second 4x PCIe slot, a miniPCI slot, or an mSATA slot), so it's probably still a fair comparison.

    What do we get? A fully configured BitFenix would be $344 and still not match the featureset... Suddenly that Shuttle doesn't seem so expensive anymore, does it?

    I'm not knocking the Fenix, mind you, I'm just venting at my friend who will probably never see this.
    Reply
  • GotThumbs - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I really like the layout of this case. The quality seems to be very good and I personally don't care about the name on the case....as long as the build quality is good. Being able to add my choice of PS is a good feature. I'd be interested in getting this case if it was just a little smaller in size. I'm currently using a modified APEX MI-008 for my WHS. I pulled out the 5.25 drive cage and have four drives suspended in the front. I only need a box large enough to hold the ITX board and HD's. I rip my content on my main system and then load onto the server, so no need for an optical drive in the server. I'll be keeping my eye on this company and their case selection.

    Good article and appreciate the photos and not limiting reviews to only 'Big" name brands. Only a fool would accept limiting their options IMO.
    Reply
  • DesertCat - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    To be fair, many of the cases that are competitors to this unit also do best with ATX PSUs that are only 140mm long. I think some people with the Lian Li PC-Q11 have been able to use 150mm long PSUs but things start to get really crowded between the front intake fan and the back of the PSU. Having about half of your front intake fan blowing onto the back of the PSU at a distance of 1 cm isn't exactly ideal. With some of their other models, long PSUs will run into the drive cage. So... I think BitFenix is going with a PSU length that is typical for many of these cases (though people may still not like that).

    For those that don't mind having a non-modular PSU (and the associated cable tucking), an ideal solution for many of these little cases is the Nexus NX-5000 R3 (530W) or NX-6000 R3 (630W). They are only 125mm long. That is a model that doesn't show up at many of our favorite online retailers though, but a bit of search engine magic will allow people to find a U.S. retailer that carries them.
    Reply
  • versesuvius - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    The case is 25 cm thick? And this is supposed to house a micro ATX board? At 40 cm height, it is already an ATX case. So, what is the point of the micro ATX board? Who is this case trying to fool? Reply
  • LOUiECOG - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    Mini-ITX Reply
  • versesuvius - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Just the same. This case is just too big for the board. No point in using it for any purpose. BitFenix already produces cases that are cheaper than this, look a lot better and have the same volume, that can house boards and cards much larger than this case can accommodate, with the most important benefit that they have a %20 less footprint. When people are talking about small in workplace or home they are not usually talking about the height, it is mostly about width and depth. This case fails on both accounts. Reply
  • Sogekihei - Monday, June 04, 2012 - link

    And yet this probably wouldn't exist if there wasn't some demand for such a product. Clearly somebody wants to build mini-ITX for whatever reason (lowered power consumption, integrated components such as Bluetooth and WiFi adapters) but still have a moderately powerful system, perhaps for home theatre purposes or as a game console/arcade game emulator. Considering all of the Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge-based mini-ITX boards available as well as the presence of moderately powerful single slot-width graphics cards such as some revisions of nVidia's GTS 450, this is not only possible but to some extent wanted by consumers, as such things would end production after their first iteration if they weren't commercially successful.

    As the article mentioned, mATX basically has the same features as ATX at this point with both offering multiple PCI-e slots and numerous slots for additional system memory. For purpose-built systems that don't need large quantities of RAM or multiple graphics cards, RAID controllers, dedicated sound cards, etc, mini-ITX might become the new low-end/mainstream form factor and replace mATX in that regard.

    I really feel like your complaints about this would have been equally applied back in the days when mid-tower and smaller case sizes first became prevalent, where you aren't seeing the full appeal of either the new mainboard form factor or you're under/over-estimating size differences; these days height can be a limiting factor with a lot of people wanting to have systems that they can place on a shelf of their entertainment center like a DVD player or video game console.
    Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Friday, June 01, 2012 - link

    I have a heavily modified Travala C138 2Din Mini-ITX enclosure.

    It began life as a Stock C138 enclosure with a Via C7 mini-ITX board. CPU and Case Fans were 40mm. Held a slimCD/DVD and one 3 1/2 drive. (Travala has modified this model recently and now there is the option for two 2 1/2 drives.)

    I drilled many, many ventalation holes, machined out extra metal inside that blocked airflow, machined custom rails to accept the 2.5" drives, but allow for airspace on all 4 sides of the drives, etc...

    Now it holds an 80mm Silenex 11dba Intake on the right side, 80mm Silenex 11dba Exhaust on the left side... and a 80mm Silexex 14dba Fan on the low profile heatpiped copper cpu cooler. Upgraded the powersupply to 120W.

    I shortened/soldered/etc.. all cables for minimum space/folding.

    It is equipped with the Gigabye H55N motherboard, two Seagate 2.5" 7200pm 500MB harddrives, A clarksdale I5 DualCore HT processor (655K) overclocked to 3.8Ghz, and a Sony slim BlueRay DVD, 8 GBs of Ram.

    It is whipser quiet. Temps are reasonable... at full load I have seen the temps climb above 60degC, but normally stay around 40degC....not bad for living in the mexican desert...

    Well now I want to go to IvyBridge..at 4Ghz with 16GB of Ram.. and I want to swap out the harddrives for SSD. And I want to stay mini-ITX... The Asus Z77 mini-ITX Deluxe board looks fantastic.. but it has that weird raised power daughter card that will get in the way of my 80mm Intake....

    So, I'm looking for a better case. How frustrated I am that I cannot find one that matches mine..... I don't mind going a little bigger... But it seems you go tiny and fanless... or huge with space for 4 to 6 harddrives?

    The search is frustrating..
    Reply
  • ggathagan - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    If you don't care about overclocking, go with the H77 based board:
    http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155...
    It doesn't have the daughter card.

    For an ITX system that cannot do CF or SLI, the only thing you give up with H77 is overclocking support., and I'm not sure if that means no multiplier *and* no BCLK adjustments, or simply no multiplier adjustments.

    If you must have Z77, there's the ASRock Z77E-ITX LGA:
    http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z77E-I...
    Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Really would like to get the Asus P8Z77-I Deluxe.

    Mini-ITX cases are just either too small or too big.

    What would be ideal is simply the following:

    Height: 16cm (~6.25")
    Width: 24cm (~9.5")
    Depth: 24cm (~9.5")

    1 x slim CD/DVD (external)
    2 x 2.5" HD (internal)
    150W internal mini-powersupply w/ external brick.
    2 x slim120cm (each side) silent fans.
    Front mount the following: LEDs, Switch, USB2/3, mic & headphone jacks, smartcard reader (look how small something like the dynex dx-cr6n1 is..that could be mounted vertically above or below usb ports).
    very short/thin cables for slim miniSATA, SATA data/power, ATXpower.

    just need a mini-ITX board with 2 case fan headers and a cpu fan header. Asus has that.

    Honestly, can't see why Travala won't modify the C138 to be something like this!

    The added depth would give a little more space between the case powersupply and memory modules of the mainboard.

    The added height would allow for a little taller heatsink...and a bit more space around the 2.5" SSD drives which would mount below the slimBlueRayDVD.

    The added width would make the side mounted intake and exhaust fans (blow across the whole system...so that heat from power supply and system board never run into each other...rather it's a laminar air flow. And if you wanted a monster video card i lieu of one of the fans, you'd have space for that..
    Reply
  • randinspace - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Anybody else wondering what Anand would've chosen to stick in one of these for his home theater if it had been on the market? Personally, I've been extremely tempted to gut a cheap HP I bought last year and stick its innards into one of these babies ever since they launched. The only thing that's held me back is indecision regarding what mini-itx board to buy for it... Either way, great review, as usual.

    ... Ah looks like other people were indeed asking themselves "what would Anand do?" if Twitter is any indication.
    Reply
  • nashville - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    im liking this very much! Reply
  • zlandar - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    This case has a height of 16". I use a Silverstone GD6 which has a height of 6". Measuring my entertainment console (Z-line with two lower shelves below the TV) the clearance is 9-10".

    Too bad because the biggest drawbacks of the Silverstone are the poor height clearance for cpu coolers and pain in the ass assembly. All the desktop-style HTPC cases seem to suffer from the cpu cooler height limitation.
    Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Mini-ITX cases are just either too small or too big.

    What would be ideal is simply the following:

    Height: 16cm (~6.25")
    Width: 24cm (~9.5")
    Depth: 24cm (~9.5")

    1 x slim CD/DVD (external)
    2 x 2.5" HD (internal)
    150W internal mini-powersupply w/ external brick.
    2 x slim120cm (each side) silent fans.
    Front mount the following: LEDs, Switch, USB2/3, mic & headphone jacks, smartcard reader (look how small something like the dynex dx-cr6n1 is..that could be mounted vertically above or below usb ports).
    very short/thin cables for slim miniSATA, SATA data/power, ATXpower.

    just need a mini-ITX board with 2 case fan headers and a cpu fan header. Asus has that.

    Honestly, can't see why Travala won't modify the C138 to be something like this!

    The added depth would give a little more space between the case powersupply and memory modules of the mainboard.

    The added height would allow for a little taller heatsink...and a bit more space around the 2.5" SSD drives which would mount below the slimBlueRayDVD.

    The added width would make the side mounted intake and exhaust fans (blow across the whole system...so that heat from power supply and system board never run into each other...rather it's a laminar air flow. And if you wanted a monster video card i lieu of one of the fans, you'd have space for that..

    Really would like to get the Asus P8Z77-I Deluxe. so a case with these parameters would help me accomodate the odd daughter board and not have fan clearance issue (I would have that with my present setup).
    Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Saturday, June 02, 2012 - link

    Actually, i wouldnt even mind a slight stretch of the height to 20cm... (~7.75") then you could fit a SilverStone SFX ST45SF 450 watt Power Supply Review in the bottom of the case below the motherboard and move the SSDs under the motherboard as well.

    This would remove some hot stuff from the front of the case and give you a more standard power supply.

    Thinking I need to do a drawing eventually...
    So, I'd take:
    Height: 20cm (~7.75")
    Width: 24cm (~9.5")
    Depth: 24cm (~9.5")

    Not allot of wasted space when you consider the cross airflow objectives. And in this design..surely there is room if someone wanted an additional couple of spaces for additonal 2.5" drives...but I think anyone wanting more than 2 harddrives is not the audience for this style/shape of mini-ITX anyway..
    Reply
  • Laststop311 - Sunday, June 03, 2012 - link

    Getting ready to build an awesome lan party mini itx box. Asus has a really special mini itx board out for Z77 chipset. Since there isn't enough room for a large phase cpu power supply a board for the power phases actually plugs into the itx board, giving you equal overclocking abilities as the large atx board. Asus basically eliminated the one negative plaguing every other itx board.

    I'll be removing the drive cage to fit a full size GTX 690 GPU. Have to go dual card gpu since only 2 expansion slots on the case and I need to run 2560x1440.

    2x4GB 1866Mhz Cas 9 Ram seems to be the sweet spot for price performance ratio. Ram above 1866Mhz is just a rip off price

    256GB Crucial m4's are just a steal now and will make a nice sized boot/app/game install drive installed on right side panel

    Won't have room for a soundcard, I hope the integrated sound is ok.

    14x Blu Ray RW combo drive

    3TB WD AV-GP on bottom

    Corsair H80 rad in push pull attatched to exhause area

    i7-3770k OC'd to 4.3Ghz

    Seasonic X650 Gold PSU hybrid fan

    upgraded 230mm front fan

    upgraded 140mm exhaust fan

    2x high static pressure noctua 120mm fans in push pull to replace default corsair fans

    psu installed upside down for fresh supply of cold air direct to psu

    indigo extreme thermal interface.

    What I love about this build is the fact it will be a nice tiny easy to carry light lan gaming box but the great part is it will totally smoke anything my friends got, even full atx towers it will leave in the dust. I think this is the dawning of new champion in the desktop space. Mini ITX is the future of most desktops. I guarantee the system will run faster than most peoples full size rigs here
    Reply
  • Guges - Monday, September 03, 2012 - link

    Any chance you could post a picture of your set up...curious to see how everything fits in there...considering building something similar...not sure if we really need the radiator...I think the 4 upgraded fans would be good. Reply
  • wiz329 - Wednesday, June 19, 2013 - link

    I'm new to computer building, and i'm thinking of building this case. Did you put the 2x nocturna fans on the ceiling of the case, or how do you have those configured? Reply
  • SquareOFortune - Sunday, June 03, 2012 - link

    Where on earth could they ever have gotten the inspiration for that external design? ;) Reply
  • Mumrik - Monday, June 04, 2012 - link

    Finally an ITX case that comes loaded with storage bays. That means it has some pretty great NAS/server potential for a lot of people. I'd really like to have seen it tested with those bays filled with 3½" HDDs. Reply
  • araczynski - Tuesday, June 05, 2012 - link

    we just threw out a bunch of ancient apple towers that looked like this.

    little late to the game?
    Reply
  • SeanFL - Friday, June 08, 2012 - link

    Just realized this case is about the same size as the mini atx builds I've done.

    Here's a m-itx that is really small if needed. built it a few times, it works well.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...
    Reply
  • GED2 - Thursday, July 26, 2012 - link

    Did you find the Easter Egg they left in the case that enables you to have BOTH a full-size GPU AND the middle bay for a total of seven drives?

    http://www.tonymacx86.com/user-builds/60362-geds-p...
    Reply
  • Narg - Thursday, August 23, 2012 - link

    Love this case. If they made it for Micro ATX I'd be all over it! ITX still doesn't fill the needs for my computer. But Micro ATX is perfect. Anyone know of a similar case in the Micro ATX sizes? Reply
  • n13L5 - Sunday, August 26, 2012 - link

    For one thing, it looks like a cheap copy of an old power mac.

    For another, I can't understand how they can be so wasteful with space for an mITX case.

    A counter productive box, I can find ATX cases that take up less room...
    Reply
  • jansteytt - Sunday, September 23, 2012 - link

    HardwareDufus,
    Want a 23 liter case that is 22x30x34 cm? Want 5 or more 120mm+ case fans? 1000 watt power supply? Full sized CPU cooler? And Narg wants a mATX case. Perhaps smaller than the BitFenix. Room for three 3.5 in and four 2.5" drives? Both prayers have been answered.

    The Silverstone SG09 has been released in Japan. Supposed to be $99. in the USA, where it will be released in October. But costs $125 in Japan now. I was inspired by HardwareDufus and tempted to mod one of my Shuttle form factor cases (yes, the "S" in SFF was originally "Shuttle), but Silverstone has ticked every box except price. But the extra fans make it worthwhile for me; especially since fans can be ADDED!! The low temps may not be optimal for your hard drives, but everything else will rejoice.

    And did I mention, room for full sized cards?

    I don't need one, but I will buy one at $99.00
    Reply
  • BlueReason - Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - link

    Not sure if this was pointed out yet, but it appears you accidentally forgot to change the details when you copied and pasted the first paragraph of the Testing Methodology section, as it seems to be from the review of a different case. Reply

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