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Old September 10, 2012, 03:56 AM
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Default Recommended Value Gaming Case

Personally, I'm a quiet, 'sff' case kinda guy. that also tends to be a synonym for expensive.

I was trying to pick out a case for my friend's budget gaming build when I realized I was spending wayyyy too much for a fractal design define case. At the moment, I realized I have no idea what a practical case for a non-hardware enthusiast would be.

I took the time to list out some of the features I would like in a case. Please remember that I'm used to picking out M-ITX cases; ATX cases probably have useful features that I'm not used to considering. Please point out anything else you think I missed.

Must-Have Features:
  • Exactly ATX Form-Factor
  • Support for two 3.5" drives and one 2.5" drive
  • CPU Cutout
  • Support for the Noctua NH-D14
  • At least 2 USB ports, audio in/out, and a power button on the front panel
    • I'm not picky about them being USB 3 ports, but it is important that these ports are on the FRONT PANEL and not the TOP PANEL
  • Price must be under $100, preferably closer to $60, and $45 would be awesome
Want-To-Have Features:
  • Slider Rails/Sled for the HDDs
  • Tool-Less, External Fan Filters
  • Tall Case Feet
  • Silence-Oriented Case Design
  • Window to showoff the heatsink
I took a look at the Antec One and it seems pretty solid to me.


Do you guys have any other recommendations?
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Old September 10, 2012, 09:47 AM
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I would recommend the following cases:
Cooler Master Elite 370, Elite 430, HAF 912 or the HAF 912 Advanced

Both the Elite 430 and the HAF 912 Advanced have windowed side panels. All of these cases around $60 or less except the HAF 912 Advanced which is around $85.

The Cooler Master Elite 430 is my favourite of these cases.

I hope this helps.
Larry.
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Old September 10, 2012, 09:48 AM
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Antec 300 was on sale a bit ago at ncix, might still be.

Antec Three Hundred Mini Tower Gaming Case 300 ATX 3X5.25 6X3.5INT No PS Front USB & Audio - Antec - THREE HUNDRED
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Old September 10, 2012, 03:06 PM
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thanks for the recommendations guys.

any thoughts on the Antec One though?
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Old September 10, 2012, 03:24 PM
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Antec 300's have some pretty solid airflow if your a cable management genie, cant say for sure if it actually fits a huge cpu cooler. (great case for its price)

The HAF 912 is apparently amazing as well, haven't seen or used one myself but always hear great things about it.
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Old September 10, 2012, 09:38 PM
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I would second the antec 300. If you're willing to spend a little more the corsair 300r could be had for about $60 on sale.
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Old September 12, 2012, 03:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rovert View Post
I would second the antec 300. If you're willing to spend a little more the corsair 300r could be had for about $60 on sale.
Yeah I'd go with the Corsair 300r, looks a lot better with a lot more features (like cable management routes). But you can't beat the Antec 300 for the money.

NCIX was having the sale on the Antec 1100 for $59.99 a WHILE ago, haven't seen them done another sale of that price since.
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Old September 12, 2012, 06:18 AM
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The Antec 300 come at $ 39.99 free shipping quite often at NewEgg ....the Antec Gaming one is way better than the 300 for cable management and it's only at $ 49

Newegg.ca - Antec Gaming Series One Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

The Clio 320 don't look bad

Newegg.ca - XCLIO 320 Black Finish Steel & Plastic & Brushed Aluminum Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
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Old September 12, 2012, 11:46 AM
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I hate towers with side holes. It just makes sound escape out the case to annoy the user. I also quit building ATX. It is mATX (general and gaming use) and mITX (HTPC) for me.
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Old September 13, 2012, 05:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 486 View Post
I hate towers with side holes. It just makes sound escape out the case to annoy the user. I also quit building ATX. It is mATX (general and gaming use) and mITX (HTPC) for me.
And this helped the OP out how?

On topic for the OP:

I have not tried the new Antec versions of the 300 so I cannot really say (the old 300 was a love/hate relationship) but I hear they fixed some of its glaring issues.

I don't know how Zalman manages to keep it so cheap but this is a pretty decent option:

Zalman Z9 ATX Mid Tower Case Black 3X5.25 1X3.5 5X3.5INT No PS Front USB & Audio - ZALMAN TECH - Z9

The Elite 430 or even NZXT M59 if you can still find it are good viable options.
I have worked in them all and although you have to realize its a budget case, they do well for what they are.

Hope that helps,

-ST
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