The Guardian was designed with a little of everything in mind. It comes with modifications, like colored lighting and side panel window, but also includes functionality features like an almost completely screw-less/tool-less design using sliding devices for drive mountings and add-on cards.

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The front bezel brings back memories of the old Transformers cartoons. The face looks robotic and features a blue animated LED. The light serves as the power LED for the case, but connects directly to the power supply by a 4-pin adapter.

Click to enlarge.

Fading LED (in and out) (right click to save file)

Fading LED (left to right) (right click to save file)

At the lower part of the face are two sliding pieces, which reveal two USB ports (left) as well as Audio ports (right) for use with headphones or a microphone.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Upon opening the door, the five 5-1/4" bays as well as two out of the five of the 3-1/2" drive bays come into view. Five 5-1/4" drive bays may seem too much for typical uses, since many system rigs consist of, at most, 2 optical drives with the rest being hard drives.

Click to enlarge.

The Power and Reset buttons, which sit on either side of the first 3-1/2" drive bay, are well constructed and are flush to protect from accidental touches. Sitting behind the door instead of exposed when the door is closed also helps to protect from accidental shutdowns.

Click to enlarge.

The Guardian comes in a variety of colors, including orange, yellow, green, blue, black, and this silver that we reviewed. The paint is of high quality and adds to the overall value of the chassis.

The left side panel has an artistic design that goes well with the case's façade. The machined design looks like a horizontal shield with a fan opening towards the back. The window is a piece of plastic mounted to the panel on the inside by the 18 black snap-on clips. The panel is easily removable by pulling the handle-like formation at the back and is held in place by thumbscrews, keeping the tool-less design going inside and out. The right side panel has vent holes whose purpose might be to allow for the exhaust of warm air.

Click to enlarge.

Index Case Fans


View All Comments

  • segagenesis - Tuesday, July 06, 2004 - link

    OK design, terrible exterior (I wont say worst!). I think we dubbed this case the "Transformer Case" at the shop. Reply
  • firtol88 - Wednesday, April 07, 2004 - link

    :o :o :o OMFG ROLFMAO!!!!

    17'5 50 1337!!!

    :| ????????
  • TrogdorJW - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    The problem with case mods is that they just emphasize the geekiness of the owner/creator. At least when you do it yourself, you're being a true geek and not just some poser. Personally, I like my cases to have as few lights as possible and to be quiet. Of course, my computers are all in the living room, which has something to do with my tastes. If you're watching some show on TV, you don't want to hear the whine of the fans and power supplies. Even more important, when it's bed time and you're stuck sleeping on the couch (hey, it happens), its really hard to fall asleep with glowing cases illuminating the room, and the data-centeresque turbine whine doesn't help either.

    Basically, that Lian Li kicked ass over this.
  • GonzoDaGr8 - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    Icewind....Nice case pal. Nice case. Reply
  • Icewind - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    Yeah, if I was 10 years old, I might be going insane to have that for a case, but seeings how im pretty seasoned case modder, I must laugh. The thing just reaks of quality!


    I'll show you how its done right.....
  • Operandi - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    "NZXT incorporated good looks and performance in the Guardian."

    hahah, I'm sorry but this thing is anything but "good looking".. Am I the only one sick of these increadbly cheap and tacky looking cases? I used to think Thermaltake cases look like *&%@ till i saw this thing...

    Lets get some reviews of cooler masters, silverstones, or Lian Li's...
  • Praeludium - Monday, April 05, 2004 - link

    You know, I have a plain metallic grey Antec 1080 server case, and I game just fine.

    I do have a red neon fan in there, but I don't even see that because the door it's installed in is facing away from me. Am I just destined for prosaic attitudes already at the tender age of seventeen? Or am I just too unimaginative to case mod?

    I dunno anymore.
  • retrospooty - Monday, April 05, 2004 - link

    LOL !

    It looks like one of those old transformers from the 1980's ... Only uglier
  • medfly - Monday, April 05, 2004 - link


    yeah that thing is butt ugly!


  • Verdant - Monday, April 05, 2004 - link

    i'm going to go ahead and say it...

    its ugly

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