As I have mentioned before in a couple of the podcast, I believe in buying a good case and a good power supply and usually keep those for multiple builds. It has been a while since I have replaced the case on my main system. For the past 6+ years I have been using the Thermaltake Armor which in those days was one of the best cases a builder could use when you needed allot of room. After the successful port to a new Lian-Li case last month on my secondary system, it was now time to tackle the main system. It took a long time to find a successor to the Armor as many of the cases out do have all the key elements I was looking for. I have a specific set of requirements that I look for which I have listed below.
· Must be able to handle a full size ATX boards.
· Must have room for at least 4 internal hard drives and 3 5 1/4 inch devices.
· Must have support for water cooling either internal or external through grommets.
· Must have cooling and noise reduction for the hard drives.
· Hard drives must be easy to remove or to add.
· Must have good cable management.
· Good quality and easy to work on as I do many upgrades.
· Must have a side window.
· Must be very quiet.
· Must have good ventilation with dust protection on all the fans.
· And of course, I have to like the way it looks.
That is allot to ask for and during my research for a replacement case, only three really came up as worthy contenders, the Corsair 800D, the Corsair 600T, and the new Lian-Li PC-7FNWX. After careful research and going back and forth in my mind as to which one I wanted, I decided to go with the Lian-Li. The reason was because the 800D was a full tower and I sort of wanted to go with a slightly smaller case on this one, and the 600T did not have a side window which was a requirement since I like to show the goods.
I have always been a Lian-Li fan, but I can tell you that when I open the box and looked at this thing, I was in love. It looks better in person than I imagined, and the quality of construction is outstanding, which is something you grow to expect from a Lian-Li product. The real infatuation came when I began to work on it. The case is surprisingly easy to work on and almost all you need to put in and install has been made easy. For starters, the hard drives are completely tool-less (except for SSD’s), are tray mounted, and are rubber mounted, both inside the tray as well as the tray itself. Each tray will support both 3.5 and 2.5 inch devices allowing you to support various configurations.
The first thing I did before going to far was to mount the radiator for the water cooling. I looked at various options of mounting including mounting inside, but in the end I opted for the external mount which would allow for pull/push air flow over the radiator which would provide better cooling. Once the radiator was mounted, I mounted all the basic parts such as the motherboards, hard drives, BD writer and power supplies
Tubes show green after filling the system with UV solution
Media card reader did not come with the case and was bought as an accessory.
Temperatures for both idle and stress temps.
Overall I am thrilled with my new build both in the achieved results (see above) as well as the esthetics of the build. Working on this system is now a dream and very easy to replace most parts in the system which for me is important. I have always recommend buying a good case as well as recommended the Lian Li brand and this system just furthers my belief in both.