Computer Case Price

A computer case, also known as a computer chassis, tower, system unit, cabinet, base unit, or simply case, is the enclosure that contains most of the components of a computer (usually excluding the display, keyboard and mouse). Computer case price is one of the lowest cost among the component for a custom pc.

Cases are usually constructed from steel (often SECC—Steel, electrogalvanized, cold-rolled, coil) or aluminum. Plastic is sometimes used, and other materials such as glass, wood and even Lego bricks have appeared in home-built cases.

Key terms: types of computer cases, case size, full tower, mid tower, mini tower, slim line, small form factor, motherboard form factors, atx, micro atx, mini atx, mini itx, btx, nlx, riser card.

Popular Computer Cases and price

Rosewill
Nighthawk 117

Rosewill
B2 Spirit

Thermaltake

View
71 TG

Azza
CSAZ-GT 1

Corsair
Carbide Air 740

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type : Full Tower

Type : Full Tower

Type : Full Tower

Type : Full Tower

Type : Mid Tower

 

 

 

 

 

Motherboard Support:

Motherboard Support

Motherboard Support

Motherboard Support

Motherboard Support

UltraATX,
XL-ATX, EATX, ATX, MicroATX, Mini-ITX

HPTX,
UltraATX, XL-ATX, EATX, ATX, MicroATX

XL-ATX,
EATX, ATX, MicroATX, Mini-ITX

XL-ATX,
ATX, MicroATX,           Mini-ITX

XL-ATX,
ATX, MicroATX,           Mini-ITX

 

 

 

 

 

Dimensions
(HxWxD)

Dimensions
(HxWxD)

Dimensions
(HxWxD)

Dimensions
(HxWxD)

Dimensions
(HxWxD)

23.3
x 9.2 x 22.5″

26.2
x 9.9 x 25.6″

23
x 11.6 x 23.6″

25.6
x 9.8 x 24.5″

20.0
x 13.3 x 16.9″

 

 

 

 

 

Space Above Motherboard

Space Above Motherboard

Space Above Motherboard

Space Above Motherboard

Space Above Motherboard

0.8″
(w/Fans)

3.5″
(2.5″ w/Fans)

2.3″
+1.1″ Split

2.2″

2.8″

 

 

 

 

 

Table of contents

  • Overview
  • Major component locations
  • Today’s Computer Case Options
  • The Features and Specifications to Consider

 

Overview

Computer cases usually include sheet metal enclosures for a power supply unit and drive bays, as well as a rear panel that can accommodate peripheral connectors protruding from the motherboard and expansion slots. Most cases also have a power button or switch, a reset button, and LEDs to indicate power, hard drive activity, and network activity in some models. Some cases include built-in I/O ports (such as USB and headphone ports) on the front of the case. Such a case will also (normally) include the wires needed to connect these ports, switches and indicators to the motherboard.

Major component locations

  • The motherboard is usually screwed to the case along its largest face, which could be the bottom or the side of the case depending on the form factor and orientation.
  • Form factors such as ATX provide a back panel with cut-out holes to expose I/O ports provided by integrated peripherals, as well as expansion slots which may optionally expose additional ports provided by expansion cards. Many larger ATX cases can also be used with motherboards of other form factors.
  • The power supply unit mounting point differs from case to case, but the most commonly used locations (both at the rear of the case) and their benefits/disadvantages are:
    • The top of the case, usually allowing the PSU’s built-in fan to act as an auxiliary exhaust fan, but causes the PSU to be fed air heated by the internal components of the case, thus causing PSU efficiency and lifespan degradation.
    • The bottom of the case, with a (often filtered) vent in the bottom of the case allowing the PSU to draw cool air from the outside.
  • Regardless of the mounting position, the PSU will usually be attached to the case with four screws to support its weight.
  • Most cases include drive bays on the front of the case; a typical ATX case includes 5.25″, 3.5″ and 2.5″ bays. In modern computers, the 5.25″ bays are used for optical drives, the 3.5″ bays are used for hard drives and card readers, and the 2.5″ bays are used for solid-state drives.
  • Buttons and LEDs are typically located on the front of the case; some cases include additional I/O ports, temperature and processor speed monitors in the same area.
  • Vents are often found on the front, back, top, left side panel, and sometimes on the right side panel of the case. Regardless of their placement, their purpose is either to let cool air into the case, or to let hot air out. Larger vents usually allow cooling fans to be mounted via surrounding threaded screw holes. Newer cases include mountings for larger 120mm or 140mm cooling fans for quieter operation than the 80mm fans formerly common.

The most common system case type is the tower. Depending on the specific number of internal drive bays and the height of the tower, these cases can be further classified into mini-size, mid-size and full-size tower cases. One of the biggest considerations when choosing between case sizes beside computer case price is the number of slots and the number of devices we would like to add to those cases.

Full-tower cases are generally big with a height that is about or more than 30 inches (more than 76 cm). The number of internal drive bays inside these cases can be between 6 and 10.

Computer Case Options to Buy

Desktop Case: Considered the most classical version of computer cases, these are primarily designed for personal/business computers that are placed on top of a desk. The basic objective of these cases is to conserve the available desk space as the monitor is placed on top of the computer. Interestingly, it is beneficial for the users when a computer is placed in this position because it enables the computer screen to be present at an angle that is most convenient for viewing. Also, viewers can easily avoid sitting in uneven postures, thereby reducing instances of back pain and other related ailments. Another advantage of using a desktop case is that it is simple and compact. However, desktop cases might cause a real inconvenience in certain instances as they are really difficult to upgrade. Also, they cannot be kept on the floor.

One alternative is a slimline desktop case typically used for designing workstations. Slim line cases are simply tower cases turned on their sideways. They can hold a monitor on top of the case. This type of case is ideal for computers with a dedicated use and require no upgrading. Also, these cases are convenient in offices or locations that have space limitations.

Tower Cases: These cases are used in the manufacture of computers that can be kept on the floor or on top of a computer desk. Depending on the specific number of internal drive bays present inside and the height of the tower, these cases can be further classified into mini-size, mid-size, and full-size tower cases.

  • Mini-sized Tower Cases: These cases are slightly bigger than the desktop cases and usually have 3 internal drive bays. Expandability is again a problem with these cases. Mini-tower usually have up to 2 or sometimes 3 internal drive bays. Mini-cases normally stand at a height of 12-18inches.
  • Mid-sized Tower Cases: These cases are bigger than mini-towers and can be placed either below or above the computer desk without much inconvenience. In fact, mid-tower cases are the most widely used computer cases worldwide. They usually contain 4 internal drive ways and a similar number of external bays. These cases can be easily expanded or upgraded to higher versions depending on the need and requirement. Interestingly, these cases are ideally suitable for any type of computer irrespective of whether it is a simple, business, or any advanced system. The normal height of a mid-size tower is 24inches.
  • Full-sized Tower Cases: These cases are commonly employed in the design of servers, mainframes, and advanced workstations that can handle multiple applications. Full-sized cases are generally huge with a height that is equal to or more than 30 inches. The number of internal drive bays inside these cases can be anywhere between 6 and 10. Also, these cases contain a similar number of externally accessible drive bays. Additionally, a great amount of space is present inside these cases and can be used for placing any number of hard drives, CD ROMs, and PCI cards.

 

Small form factor or SFF cases are custom cases that are designed to minimize the spatial volume of a desktop computer. SFFs are available in a variety of sizes and shapes, including shoe boxes, cubes, and book-sized PCs. Computer case price sometime varies depending on the various SFF.

There’s one important consideration we need to be aware of when choosing the case size and that is the size of the Computer Case Pricemotherboard. They need to match. The size of the motherboard is often called the Form Factor and there are several standards. The form factor identifies the size of the circuit board, the location of the slots as well as the location of the faceplate that comes out the back of the computer. The form factor also identifies the location of the holes that are used to mount the motherboard into the system case. For example, the full tower has more than enough room to fit an ATX motherboard. Mid-tower case can also accommodate an ATX motherboard in most cases.

Probably the most common form factor for a motherboard is the ATX form factor. The board is approximately 12″ x 9.6″ (30cm x 24cm).

A mini-ATX motherboard is a slightly smaller variation of the full ATX size that measures 11.2″ x 8.2″ (28cm x 21cm). The main difference between ATX and mini-ATX is the number of buses and possibly memory slots on the motherboard. Mounting holes for both are located in the same place, making them interchangeable in most cases. A case that supports an ATX motherboard can also support mini-ATX motherboard.

The micro-ATX form factor is an even smaller version of the ATX standard, with a maximum size of 9.6″ x 9.6″ (24cm x 24cm). The faceplate line up to the exact same position as in all other versions of ATX. System case that can hold an ATX motherboard can also hold micro ATX motherboard. The smaller mid or mini tower cases would likely be too small for a full ATX motherboard but should accommodate micro ATX motherboard. The terms mini-ATX and micro-ATX are often used interchangeably.

The size of Flex ATX is 9” x 7.5” (22,9 cm x 19,1 cm). It is derived from Micro ATX and is used in small computer cases.

Going down in size we have a mini ITX motherboard with a maximum size of 6.7″ x 6.7″ (17cm x 17cm). Notice that there is a single expansion slot and the motherboard itself is considerably smaller than the ATX and even the micro ATX. Also notice that the faceplate still line up and the hole positions still match the ATX hole positions. Theoretically we could take this micro ITX motherboard and place it inside a full tower case. However we usually use a small form factor case for this motherboard.

Em ITX dimensions are 17 cm x 12 cm.

Measures of Nano ITX are 4.7″ x 4.7″ (12 cm x 12 cm). It is used with smaller devices like set-top boxes, car PCs, media centers, and other embedded devices.

The size of the Pico ITX is 3.9” x 2.8” (10 cm X 7,2 cm).

Mobile ITX is the smallest form factor with the size of 2.4” x 2.4” (6 cm x 6 cm).

The ATX form factor and its variations are the most common motherboard form factors.

DTX form factor is intended for small form factor PCs, and is backward compatible with ATX form factor cases. Dimensions are 8” x 9.6” (20,3 cm x 24,4 cm).

Mini DTX is a shorter version of DTX form factor. Dimensions are 8” x 6.7” (20,3 cm x 170 cm).

SSI form factors were developed by SSI (Server System Infrastructure) forum, and are intended for dual or multi processor motherboards used in servers and or even workstations. SSI form factors were derived from ATX specification, so they have the same rear panel, IO connector area, and mounting holes. But, SSI form factors are larger than ATX, so SSI motherboards will not fit cases designed for standard ATX. The computer case has to be designed for larger than standard ATX form factor.

Three SSI form factors are CEB (Compact Electronics Bay), EEB (Enterprise Electronics Bay), and MEB (Midrange Electronics Bay). The smallest of them is SSI CEB, and the size is 12” x 10.5” (30,5 cm x 26,7cm).

SSI EEB dimensions are 12” x 13” (30,5 cm x 33 cm).

The SSI MEB size is 16.2” x 13” (41,1 cm x 33 cm). It is longer in order to provide space for two additional CPU sockets.

There are a few main differences with the BTX form factor. Notice that the faceplate is on the opposite end. Another difference is that the hole positions are different. Also, the processor socket is slightly rotated so that it is at an angle to the system board. This rotation is to aid in the airflow across the processor to assist in cooling the processor. The BTX motherboard will only fit within a system case that is designed for a BTX motherboard. In many cases this means that an ATX system case will not work with a BTX system board, although there are system cases that are able to accommodate both the ATX and the BTX form factors. The BTX form factor has not been widely adopted despite its improvements over ATX and related standards. As a result, the availability and variety of BTX-compatible components is limited.

The NLX is an older style form factor that is not used very often anymore. We might see it in some older motherboards but it’s not likely to encounter it with newer motherboards.

NLX is an older form factor used for slimline desktop-style computers. NLX is an improvement over an even earlier LPX form factor. Notice that this motherboard has no expansion slots for the PCI or ISA bus. The NLX form factor is used in slim line cases that are very short.

In order to accommodate expansion cards we use a tab on the edge of the motherboard. We insert a Riser Card on the end of the motherboard. Riser Card is then used for expansion cards like sound cards, so that now expansion cards lay flat rather than being perpendicular to the motherboard. The riser card does not have built-in ports for audio, joystick, USB, network or modem.

When choosing a system case, other than considering the size of the computer that we want, the most important thing is to match the motherboard form factor with the form factor supported by the computer case. The most common system case type is the tower. Tower cases are: Full tower, Mid tower and Mini tower. Slim line cases are simply tower cases turned on their sideways. Small form factor or SFF cases are custom cases that are designed to minimize the spatial volume of a desktop computer. The size of the motherboard is often called the Form Factor. The most common form factor for a motherboard is the ATX form factor. When considering the size of ATX we differentiate Full ATX, Mini ATX, Micro ATX, Flex ATX, Mini ITX, Em ITX, Nano ITX, Pico ITX, Mobile ITX. SSI CEB, SSI EEB, SSI MEB form factors are larger than ATX. When comparing with ATX, BTX form factor has the faceplate on the opposite side, hole positions are different and the processor socket is slightly rotated. The BTX motherboard will only fit within a computer case that is designed for a BTX motherboard. The NLX is an older style form factor that is not used very often anymore.

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