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Does type of case make a difference

Discussion in 'CC Archive' started by Hatake, 30 Dec 2005.

  1. Hatake


    Joined: 7 Mar 2005

    Posts: 192

    Location: Glasgow, Scotland

    I've read very various things about cases. There are reviews that say cases will keep temperatures low, etc.

    The way I see it is that as long as the case is a decent size, has a fan for intake at the front and exhaust fan at the back, the air flow will be as good as it can be; air in the front, over all the components and out the back.

    Temps are not going to get lower than the ambient temperature no matter how "advanced" the airflow is cause inside the case will be a few degrees hotter than ambient even before anything is turned on and then get hotter when the components are fired up.

    Also, I don't see how the type of case can seriously affect noise. Fair enough, the case has to be sturdy enough not to have side panels resonating and stuff, but the main noise will be comming from fans. So a cheap sturdy case with a few extra pounds spent on better fans will have a bigger effect than expensive cases.

    So basically my opinion is buy a cheap sturdy case that you like the look of, buy good fans for the front, rear and CPU with the money you saved from the expensive case and PSU and still have money to spend on other stuff.

    No point in buying £100+ cases with no PSU, a usable case with a good PSU included can cost around £50. Is that 2 or 3 degrees of extra cooling worth the extra money?

    Does this sound like logical reasoning or do you just think I'm completely wrong?
  2. warnea1984


    Joined: 26 Jan 2005

    Posts: 826

    I think the main reason there are £100 + cases on the market is that there is a market for high end cases, people love quality and will pay for it, better cooling from your case is possible as many cheap cases have the front air intake blocked with a plastic front.

    A decent case can also mean room for watercooling and modding possibilites. The high end cases are also mainly made from aluminium which is of interest to people who go to lans as the pc will be lighter and easier to carry around.

    But mainly we buy the expensive cases because we like owning high end components its the whole upgrade bug thingy.
  3. Noni


    Joined: 4 Nov 2005

    Posts: 742

    Cheap cases suck.
  4. Insanity

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 5 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,747

    Location: Tasmania (Australia)

    Very informative.
  5. Malenko


    Joined: 4 Jun 2004

    Posts: 954

    Location: Leeds

    "Does type of case make a difference"

    You've kind of answered your own question..

    as long as the case is a decent size, has a fan for intake at the front and exhaust fan at the back.

    the case has to be sturdy enough not to have side panels resonating and stuff.

    Another thing to consider is build quality.. I used to have a cheapo case from a competitor.. It looked ok but was a nightmare to work in.. Poorly laid out inside, cluttered, razor sharp edges everywhere, poor quality materials.

    After buying an Akasa Eclipse I would now prefer to spend a bit more to get a quality product.
    Laid out very well inside, insanely simple to work in, not a single sharp edge anywhere etc... just the general attention to detail.
  6. SiriusB


    Joined: 16 Dec 2005

    Posts: 14,448

    Location: Manchester

    The Coolermaster Stacker I am getting soon is about £100 quid inc VAT and I quite happy to pay that.

    Firstly, the case is of very high quality construction so it will be sturdy, quiet and last a long long time. It is also HUGE, well it would be being a full tower case :D I will have zero problems fitting my components in at all.

    Recently I had the chance to have a poke about with a CM Stacker in person. Compared to my current Medion case it is a dream! I am more than happy to pay the £100 quid price tag :)

  7. Mark A


    Joined: 19 May 2005

    Posts: 18,015

    Location: Lancashire

    For £50 a case with a psu isn't going to be sturdy i wouldn't of thought, plus the psu included more than likely wont be up to much and is going to be quite loud compared to a decent psu.

    I can understand what your saying but alot of people myself included like to buy a case for its looks and quality and don't mind spending an extra £50 to get what we want. When i first decided to build my own PC i got a cheapo case from a competitor, its was a nightmare to get my motherboard in, especially with it being my first time :o , and every time i looked at it it just looked rubbish. The most worrying thing was that the chassis was out of twist and the side panel held it square when the thumb screws were tightened, this cant of been doing my gfx card any good :eek: . I got a new case the first week of building it and wished id of got a quality case from the outset, sure i spent £100 + (Akasa Eclipse with window) but this case is like a rock and will last me many upgrades to come, plus i think it looks great and it fits in with the rest of my kit perfectly.

  8. Hatake


    Joined: 7 Mar 2005

    Posts: 192

    Location: Glasgow, Scotland

    I was still asking cause this is just my own opinion, which seems to differ from everything on the internet. Most sites and forums have cases comming across as an overlooked important part.

    From what most people are saying, they're paying the extra money just for looks and ease of install, no-one has mentioned anything about a considerable cooling improvement.

    My computer isn't going to be a main attraction or feature in my house when guests visit so I still can't see the point in the £100+ cases, more so when they don't come with a PSU, and I'm also prepared to spend a lot of time when installing my computer as I will only do it once and the parts are expensive. Even if the case is well designed, I'd still take extra time over it. Plus, my computer is under my desk, so any amazing looks and side panels are going to work only if you get under the table, so basically useless.

    Although I do understand what warnea1984 is saying about the upgrade bug thingy, as I did think about buying an Antec P180 purely because I considered it to be one of the best cases on the market at the moment, and it doesn't look too bad. But after some logical thought of spending £150 on case and PSU or £60 for a good lookin cheaper case with a decent PSU included, I couldn't find a reason to justify it. A hotter computer will run slightly (so slight its unnoticable) faster as the electrons can move faster through the components and I doubt a few degrees of heat gained from a cheaper case will have any life shortening effect on other components, with technology these days, your components are likely to be out of date even before the warranty runs out.

    I can use that £90 saved to upgrade my GFX Card, CPU, or a night out; which is definitely more important than a case and will be used a lot more. A CPU or GFX Card will improve my computer much more than a case.
  9. The IPB


    Joined: 15 Jul 2005

    Posts: 3,390

    Location: In the cage

    Obviously from the outset you have some sort of vendetta against pricey cases, but it's the same as everything on these forums it's all about opinion.

    I bought my new setup AMD X2 4400+, 2 x &800 GTX etc and thought, I've bought all this expensive equipment, would be nice to keep the quality in the case and the PSU, so i bought a Seasonic 600W and an Akasa Eclipse.

    Im very happy with what Ive got and it looks good, air flow is good. Its all down to each person and if they have the money to spare.
  10. hogfather


    Joined: 8 Jun 2004

    Posts: 3,074

    Location: Sarrrf London

    I recently got an antec aria, the first expensive case I've bought. The quality difference between the aria and myu old cheapo one is just worlds apart! Everything *feels* solid, and looks great.

    Pity its idling at 60 degrees though :|
  11. noxidjkram@hotm

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 29 Oct 2005

    Posts: 2,447

    Location: Newcastle upon Toon

    One point i don't see mentioned is the higher efficiency of a good quality PSU.

    It will put less heat into the case (you dont need such good airflow now), and will use less electricity (save on your bills); it will also be quieter (a noisy PSU can really get on your wick).

    Those are 3 good reasons to go for a better PSU.

    The case - the arguments have all been made above i believe:
    -Airflow (better cooling with correct style of case)
    -Ease of working (no cuts while building & space to work)
    -Longer lifespan (maybe)
    -Noise levels (good dampening)

    I think thats about it.

    Advice on a case to look at is the Antec Sonata. I've had one of these for a couple of years - they come with a very good PSU, and have excellent build quality, usability, and noise levels. (There's one on the 'bay at the mo...)

    Last edited: 31 Dec 2005
  12. Hatake


    Joined: 7 Mar 2005

    Posts: 192

    Location: Glasgow, Scotland

    Its not that I have a grudge against pricey cases, I just think they're not worth it and I was wondering am I missing some blantantly obvious point that makes them shine in comparasion, but it just seems to be preference and if you've got money to spare for the tiny benifit.

    I completely agree with nox that a pricey PSU is worth the money, it has a large affect on heat and noise (much more so than a case), has better efficienty and the last thing you want is a unstable PSU and limited upgrade options due to lack of power.

    Fair enough, if I was going to be changing parts and mobo's regularly, I'd want a good one thats easy to install, but I don't mind taking extra time over it if its just one time only. Also, if I did spend as much as Dcore-dex on new components, the extra £50 for a pricer case dulls in comparasion.

    But going by what nox shortlisted, I believe that some cheap cases can and do look good, are sturdy to last, acceptably quiet, and if its got a fan on the front and back, airflow is as good as any case (+2 or 3 degrees max). So I don't see anything that makes them stand out from above the rest apart from a Brand Name.

    I just think that the exact same benifits from a pricey case can be found in many cheaper ones and the money can be better spent on things that actually matter such as the PSU, quiet fans, or a night out lol.
  13. Alu_ATC

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Jul 2005

    Posts: 1,097

    Ok, I understand what you are saying - but as it has already been said, its about opinion. For example, you think that spending the extra money you would have saved from not buying an expensive case would be better spent on a psu, fans, gfx card, or night out etc... But to me, a gfx card isnt as important as the case. You clearly want a computer that performs well, but doesnt nessisarily look great - which is fine. But I honestly can't see why anyone would spend loads of money on a top notch computer and then put it in an el cheapo case - other than to save money.

    If you are to spend £50 on a case with a PSU already in it etc, than its most probably not going to be a good case, as the PSU will have to have been factored in to the cost. And whats the pont anyway if your going to change the PSU out? You have already highlighted the advantages of changing PSU, and to then buy a case with a PSU inbuilt seems a bit of a waste of time to me - you might as well buy a better quality case without a PSU. This isnt the same for all cases, but it is true for quite alot of the budget cases.

    Personally, the case is my fravourite part of any build, and so Im going to spend more money on a case than say someone would do on a gfx card, which may be their pride and joy. Ok - so the gfx is going to look better on screen, but a case is something your going to see when your near your computer all the time.

    All the other advantages of good build quality, better cooling performance, aesthetics, life span and noise levels I appriciate. Ok, you may never change the system, but you wont need to worry about the case's lifetime. Also, not every high end case has better cooling performance, but it probably has the rest. Also, you are happy when you've used a case and your fingers arn't bandaged up as if you've had some kind of accident from all the cuts. :D

    Also - another bonus I dont think has been added - you can sell a case on without loosing too much money on it, and if its a desirable model (perhaps not made anymore), even get the same you payed for it - or make a profit. Gfx cards are eventually going to become worthless, and second hand well used PSU's are a bit dodgey on the reliability factor.

    So, you can save money on a case, but your comp isnt going to look that good (may not bother you) and it may need to be replaced sooner than you think.

    Having said that though, there are still plenty of good cases below £100 mark that are of good quality :) - the high end for those who want a top notch case.
    Last edited: 1 Jan 2006
  14. noxidjkram@hotm

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 29 Oct 2005

    Posts: 2,447

    Location: Newcastle upon Toon

    To add to the point i made previously, if you were to purchase a quality case with quality PSU (such as the mentioned Antec Sonata) - by the time you factor in the cost of the decent PSU that comes with it (at around £40), you find that you're not paying much more for the superb quality case than you would be for a cheap one.

    Following on, you can then sell the case as i am doing (as mentioned by Alu_ATC) at a later date and recoup most (if not all) of your money - it can be cheaper in the long run!

  15. Dennisthemenace


    Joined: 30 Nov 2005

    Posts: 160

    There are as many dud cheep cases as their are dud expensive ones. I'm building a system using the X-Blade case, cheap but outstandingly good. I just ordered another cheepo chinese thing for my own system. Both under £40. Both will stand up to the more expensive cases.

    It costs very little to make a case, and most get made in some far flung third world country. I have a set limit of £50, and am more than happy with what i got. I treat buying cases like i treat buying trainers, i refuse to pay a premium for the name while there are a lot of unknown brands making them to equal quality, at half the price.
  16. Raikiri


    Joined: 5 Jul 2005

    Posts: 17,312

    Location: Brighton

    That just simply isnt true though... comparing my cheap case to my Super lanboy and there are clear advantages to have the more expensive case (although i only payed £40, they are £60 most places). The lanboy comes with 2 good quality 120mm fans, it is quieter, better build quality, lighter, has more features and IMO looks better.
  17. WJA96


    Joined: 13 Jul 2005

    Posts: 15,278

    Location: Norfolk, South Scotland

    I see what you are saying about the type of case making no difference to cooling, but there are cases out there that try and do just that eg. the Lian-Li V1xxx have the hot PSU in an air-tunnel at the bottom of the case, physically walled off from eveything else. That makes sense to me. On top of that they funnel the coolest air directly to the CPU cooler then that can be vented out the top.

    Also - the Aspire X-QPack has designed cooling. With the cover off the cooling is terrible, but put the cover on and air is drawn across the hard disks keeping them cool and a funnel of air is created over the graphics card and processor cooler.
  18. Alu_ATC

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Jul 2005

    Posts: 1,097

    Just wanted to know what high end 'dud' cases you have owned? Cant imagine you would have bought one considering what you have said in the above quote, so how do you know? Cases and trainers are different. With an expensive case -you ARNT just paying for brand name, they ARE better.

    I dont know what you mean 'will stand up to the more expensive cases', and how is the X-Blade 'outstandingly good'? No offence, but I have seen the case for myself and its just a generic steel case with a cheap paint job, flimsy plastic door and tacky fans. I can understand a 10 year old liking this, but with a name like X-Blade, do I need say anymore?

    Your right that the profit margins with cases are quite large, but this isnt the always the case (no pun intended :p ). For example, CM stopped producing their ATC line (one of the reasons) as they were simply costing too much to manufacture! To this day these cases are still amongst the best.
    Last edited: 1 Jan 2006
  19. Dennisthemenace


    Joined: 30 Nov 2005

    Posts: 160

    CustomPC did a group review of 19 cases, it contained cases like the CoolerMaster Centurian 530 for £50, CustomPC gave it their gold stamp of approval. Included in that review was the Jeantech Phong for £35, it was awarded their blue stamp of approval. In the same round up was the Cooler Master Stacker for £118, the Silverstone Temjin TJ105 for £105 as well the Akasa Eclipse 62 for £88. All picked up Custompc's stamp of approval. All of them are good quality cases that do the job well, but the £83 difference between the cheapest and dearest shouts it loud and clear, shopping around will get you a high end case at low end prices without losing the quality or the performance.

    The case i bought for the regular shelf price of £40

    It's comparable to any high end computer, and not at a rip off price. They even chucked in a tool kit. (warning, don't buy the version by Advance).
  20. Alu_ATC

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Jul 2005

    Posts: 1,097

    Sure, they all recieved the seal of approval, Custom PC approves of them, but the Akasa 62 and CM Stacker are better built cases with better features, not to mention styling. I think your just getting too hung up on the performance of the cooling, its not the only reason to buy a high end case.

    Not sure what you meant about the shopping around bit, we all want to get the case we want for the cheapest amount of money, so yes, we shop around. But if you mean you can get a £35 case that is a as good as a £115 case, then thats not the same thing. That isnt shopping around, thats selecting a totally different case.

    There is nothing wrong with cases below £100, infact, if you want a budget case like your X-Blade, then go for it! The arguement here isnt whether or not cheap cases are good, but I can't believe you actually think a Jeantech Phong is going to be as good as a Silverstone TJ05 - they are a different range of cases - its like cars on a smaller scale, and some are going to want something that is just fuctional, like yourself.

    Personally though, Ill stick to the high-end as far as cases go.

    Plus, you should shop around, found your case for £35 ;)