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So many budget cases to choose from

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September 17, 2010 8:43:38 AM

Hi all,
I am looking to get a decent budget case but there seems to be so many to choose from, also given price variance between UK and US, sometimes what is a good buy in the US is not a good buy in the UK, and of course some just are not available to us (like the Rosewill Challenger) which makes 'best buy' articles sometimes tricky to go by. The ones I am considering are as follows (ignore the price on the links, I just grab links to sites with details on each case):

Antec 300 - £41
This case is a popular amongst many buyers I know, good cooling and fairly quiet. The downside to it is its very boring look but I don't mind boring, the fact it only comes with 2 fans (not a huge issue as I beleive that still cools well) and that it may be too tight for a large GPU?

Antec 200 - £31
This case is a great price, but it only comes with 2 fans. The downside is I am trying to decide if I like its look or hate it, another possible problem is same as the 300 - is it big enough to fit the large GPUs?
At £10 cheaper, unless you really hate its look is there any reason to buy the 300 anymore?

Thermaltake M5 - £41
This case looks funkier than the above ones, though it only comes with one fan which seems a little tight. Again, not sure if it can fit large GPUs. Given its price I think I would sooner buy one of the Antecs.

Asus TA M11 - £41
This case has the coolest look, it also comes with 4 fans, it can fit big GPUs. It looks to me like a better buy to the Antec 300. Only downside to it is aside from store reviews I have not seen any actual sites review it, so I don't know how loud it may be compared to Antecs, or if the cooling is not as good as you would expect.

At the moment I am leaning more towards the Antec 200 and the Asus TA M11. I would be interested in hearing other peoples opinions on the cases and how you would rate each one. Also, if anyone has personal experience with the Asus case, I would love to hear your views!

More about : budget cases choose

September 17, 2010 10:19:53 AM

I believe the HAF 912 is expected to be around £65 (about $90) over here in the UK which is not what I consider budget .

The NZXT is a pretty good choice at £32 - any downside to it aside from being a little deformed looking? GPU size limitations?
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September 17, 2010 10:28:14 AM

^ Lolz I wouldnt say it as deformed looking...The pics at newegg, dont do justice to it...
And as for the GPU size, it would fit upto 11.1" long cards...

As for the HAF 912, I think it would be priced around ~£50
http://www.xsreviews.co.uk/reviews/cases/coolermaster-h...
Actually there are 3 different versions of it
912, 912 Plus, And not sure about this I think it is 912 Pro or something...
So the 912 should end up being cheaper...
September 17, 2010 11:33:58 AM

Ah, that may make sense - the 912 Plus was £65. I think even the normal HAF 912 at £50 will be a bit steep when the other budget cases seem pretty good.

Asus TA M11, Antec 200 and now the NZXT are the 3 top runners for me. Asus is the most expensive, but with 4 fans I wont need to buy more, it is also the best looking I think.

The Antec 200 and the NXZT are both a bargain at £30ish, the NZXT has only one fan so I will likely want to buy another couple, the Antec 200 I would probably just buy one extra fan. Neither of them are particularly pleasing to my eye, but if they cool significantly better and more silently than the Asus then I am willing to live with that
September 17, 2010 11:35:41 AM

:lol:  Deformed looking :lol:  Some would say that it's cutting edge though! (Not me. I'll go with asteldian on this one)

If you like Budget Asus cases, you might wanna take a look at these - advancetec.co.uk - You'll have to check out the lengths though if you're worried 'bout fitting in a 'large' GPU. BTW, does large mean you're looking at the 12'" 5970? Then you'll prolly need 22"+ IMO. (Of curse you can fit it into some 20" long cases, depending how the HDD bays are set up.)

Otherwise 'most all current generation ones will fit into anything that's 18.5+ without any modding whatsoever. (Dunno about the upcoming 6xxx series ones). In that case I'll definitely go with the Antec 200 (can't beat the price/performance ratio), or the HAF 912 seeing as it's got very good reviews - overclockersclub.com - & - hardwarecanucks.com - & - hardwaresecrets.com
September 17, 2010 12:11:09 PM

If you find it hard to choose between cases, I think you should just go to a physical shop near you and see it with your own eyes...than choose..
Basicaly I like Antec 200, 300 and the HAF912 for those prices, but NZXT gamma is also not bad.
Those cases have good airflow...now it comes only to one term :
Which one do you like? from the looks I mean.
September 17, 2010 12:15:47 PM

asteldian said:
I believe the HAF 912 is expected to be around £65 (about $90) over here in the UK which is not what I consider budget .

The NZXT is a pretty good choice at £32 - any downside to it aside from being a little deformed looking? GPU size limitations?



the NZXT is basically the same case as the Challenger. you just have to add fans
September 17, 2010 12:36:07 PM

The one I like the look of most is the Asus, but if it performs worse than the others whilst being £10 more then I am willing to lose looks for performance.

I think most likely the choice is between the Antec 200 and the Asus TA M11. While the NZXT case is a good price, I can get the Antec 200 for the same which doesn't look like the Elephant Man of the PC Case world
September 17, 2010 1:58:56 PM

how about:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B000Z2CN2G/ref=olp_p...
for a budget case? I built my Gf's system in one and it was great fun to work with, and it cost me £15 for two, now thats budget :) 
see the last link in my sig for better photo's of the case
they come with one 120mm fan but are great for modding or adding extra fans if you choose to,
hope this helps :) 
Moto
September 18, 2010 8:30:44 AM

Personally, I wouldn't touch that NZXT with a bargepole even if it came free, forget 'bout actually having to spend on it LAWL.

Amongst the ones discussed on this thread I'll personally go with the HAF 912 - Asus Vento - Antec 200 in that order.

Personally I use the COOLER MASTER Elite 310 (red) - great functionality, easy to build in, sophisticated, non-blingy with just a bit of color :) 

I like the look of motopsycho's case too, but at 44 cms, (under 18") I think it doesn't match one of your criteria.
September 18, 2010 9:03:09 AM

^I didn't notice any criteria in the post, although my brain now picks up the graphics card bit, was that it? I'm happy to do some measuring if you want Asteldian, just message me and I'll whip the other half's pc to bits and measure whatever you need man
Moto
September 18, 2010 10:10:53 AM

^ Yeah, it was the gfx card bit. Actually I had a Rosewill challenger in one of my builds with a 5970, and madadmiral pointed it out. I measured my own case and saw that it won't fit without some serious modding. Thankfully, the prices of that GPU fell & I upgraded my build to a 922 :) 
September 18, 2010 1:04:34 PM

My gf has a Sapphire 5770 in hers atm, comes up as 8.5 inches including the powerplug, everything after that is cable and will bend,
if Astel can post his intended gfx card details, I'll see how that would/wouldn't fit for him
Moto
September 21, 2010 9:54:44 AM

Apologies for the lack of replies - have been unable to get online for a few days.
Currently I am not actually using a very big card - just a 5850. I just want to make sure I have enough space for future GPUs - years ago I had a headache upgrading a friends computer to an 8800GTX as his case was too small - nothing worse than spending money on a new card ad then having to spend more on a case too. I think the biggest cards are 11.5 so ideally wouldlove to be able to fit such a size in, though in reality I don't see myself using a 5970 type card so I am guessing 10.5-11 would be enough.

I think I am still leaning towards the Asus tower unless others can convince me that the Antec is better
September 22, 2010 6:40:56 AM

From the back of the pci slot inside the back of the case to the hardrive cage at the front is exactly 11 inches on her case, room to fit a 10.5'' card easily I'd say :) 
my galaxyIII case has an extra inch on that measurement and I picked one up for £36ish iirc
Moto
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