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Can a bad PC case really degrade performance?

Last response: in Components
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October 27, 2013 7:29:20 AM

I just ordered all parts needed for my first build (600€,arond 800$), but as my budget was tight (since I was focused mostly on the GPU and Haswell i5), I decided to go with the cheapest case available in my store.
It happens to be an Aerocool V3X (Black Edition, not Advance)(around 28€). After ordering it, I read around the internet and some people say that this brand is really bad with cases.
And a few minutes after that, I saw that adding just 30€ more would get me a Zalman Z9 (which I read is awesome for airflow and features), and I regret my mistake the second I saw the Zalman.
The guys at the store say that it's already been ordered (I order via them and they order from somewhere in Germany) and is being shipped, so cancelling the order is a no-go.
I can't return it and I find it stupid to sell a brand new case, so I'm wondering;
Can a bad case (better yet, this case specifically) degrade system performance?

I know CPU and GPU temps are risky stuff, but does a bad case really show in performance? Would leaving the side panel open help?

EDIT: Also, in a bad-airflow-case, how much better would a closed-loop water cooler be compared to the stock LGA1150 one? (Corsair H55 or H60, Antec Kuhler H2O 620 or the Cooler Master Seidon 120M being my main options.)
And in that, would it be better to get a sub-60€ air-cooler? (I hear Schyte make air coolers good enough to beat some closed-loop-WCs. Would a Mugen 4 do?)
October 27, 2013 7:43:48 AM

A crappy case is not just a matter of bad airflow or cooling. Sharp edges, bad cable management, misaligned mount holes....all are possible.
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October 27, 2013 7:49:34 AM

Cable managment isn't even an option, so I'll have to use some old tricks. ;) 
I tend to keep everything away from edges, so even if they're razor-sharp, it wouldn't be a problem.
And I've not ever seen a case with misaligned mount holes. Even the cheap 15$ cases on Ebay have them right.

I'm just worried about how much it impacts performance, besides the obvious temperature increase. It only has a 80mm fan in the back, though I do plan getting at least a front intake fan.

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October 27, 2013 8:07:18 AM

as USAFRet said, the potential for things being/going wrong is always there. However, I would not be too concerned at this point since you don't even have the case yet. Just be careful when working with the case as it may be flimsy and have sharp areas. Take your time with the build and if you find areas of concern, they can be addressed as they come up.

edit: You can always add more/better fans if you have airflow issues, but a quick look at what I could find on the case in question left me little doubt that it will be an ok case.
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October 27, 2013 8:15:04 AM

Thanks for the quick answers, appreciated! :D 
I'm just wondering why I hadn't registered here earlier, you people are awesome!

Though I am still worried a ton. :I (Can't help it, I always am xD)
The PSU is top-mounted (which, by my knowledge of physics, is better) and having an EVGA GTX 660 (non Ti, not OC'd) definitely won't help with the heat (since the thing is said to get quite warm with only one fan).
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Best solution

October 27, 2013 8:18:33 AM

Get it, build it. Use it.
If it sucks in the cooling scene, add a fan or two.
If it still sucks, then and only then look to getting a new case.
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October 27, 2013 8:25:02 AM

From the previous answers and your comments, there should be no serious surprises. It sees you're capable of dealing with less-than-perfect cases so, I'd say, just be sure the case cooling is sufficient and you're good to go. You can always upgrade later to eliminate the shortcomings of the new case (and ALL cases fall short somewhere). Enjoy your new rig and keep us posted from time-to-time.
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October 27, 2013 8:25:09 AM

+1 to what USAFRet said
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October 27, 2013 8:31:24 AM

Do not worry.
The case will have adequate cooling for a build in your budget range.
If you have any doubts, take the side cover off and see what it does to your temperatures.
If it makes a significant difference, then you can do something about it.
80mm fans are noisy, and do not push much air. but, they may well be ok if your parts are not particularly hot.
See how you do first.

As to cable management, just route the psu cables away from the main airflow as best you can.
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October 27, 2013 8:33:22 AM

Thanks, guys.
Felt like you told me all I needed to hear, so best answer (-er) was selected.
And @rpjkw11, you'll soon wish you never said that :p  I can be quite a pain with my questions. :3
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