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Help deciding on a case for my first build ($120 max)

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May 1, 2012 4:39:07 AM

I need help deciding on a case for my first build. I keep bouncing between multiple cases and cannot decide on which to get.

Here are the parts: http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...
-- I will be getting the 7850 graphics card or 660 ti (when it comes out) soon
Here are a some cases I keep looking at:
Corsair 300r: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Corsair 400r: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Zalman z9 plus: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CM 690 II advanced: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CM Haf XM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CM storm scout: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Rosewill challenger u3: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Rosewill ranger: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
NZXT 410 elite: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
NZXT temptest evo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Zalman z9 plus: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I am pretty sure the parts I want will all fit in each case. But I am not quite sure which case is the biggest bang for the buck. I just do not know which case will overall be more reliable, quite, and worth the money. Some features I want: black inside, side window (preferred), tool-less parts, lots of stock airflow(and upgradeable airflow), usb 3.0 header, and dust filtration. I am open to any suggestions on other cases as well. I hope you can help me decide, because I am stuck on picking a case for my build :)  , which I will be overclocking, and gaming.

Thanks!
a b ) Power supply
May 1, 2012 4:52:11 AM

If you like sober cases with minimal exterior distractions but nearly everything except the kitchen sink inside without breaking the bank, the Antec 302 would be another option for ~$80. It is my current first choice for my next PC.
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May 1, 2012 5:01:11 AM

What is the difference between the original and the two series? And between the 300 and 900? All I can tell is that the 302 or 902 have better cable management with more space. I love the simple look of that case though, it's just the inside of antec cases are kind of ugly
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a b ) Power supply
May 1, 2012 5:24:02 AM

seanmcd91 said:
What is the difference between the original and the two series?

The original 300 had no cut-out to access the Motherboard's backside to install HSF mounting backplates but a revision to the 300 added that.

Major changes between the 300 and 302:
- cable storage/management behind the motherboard
- 3.5" drive cage rotated 90 degrees for side-access for easier drive insertion/removal and cable routing away from airflow from the front fans
- tool-less drive bays
- USB3 front headers
- extra optional case fan location for the motherboard cut-out area
- filtered air intake under the PSU so the PSU can pull air almost directly from outside
- two mounting location for SSDs
- different front fan mounting, haven't seen the actual details on it other than they do not appear to be using the hinged steel cages they were using in the 300
- rear-protruding expansion slot brackets (screw brackets from outside rather than inside)
- cosmetic changes

That's all the changes I remember.

I haven't looked at the 6xx/9xx much, not a fan of case windows. No windows = I don't have to worry about internal decor, just need to keep things out of the airflow path as best as I can, which should be much easier in the 302 than the 300.

My current PC is in an original 300 without motherboard cut-out.
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May 1, 2012 7:26:55 AM

Dont waste time on deciding get the best...

Both of the NZXT are the best one's still
Plenty of room , Best Cooling with Six Fans ...Best design , Side Panel and the NZXT TEMPEST EVO Crafted Series is a Beast...


Hope this Helps
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May 1, 2012 2:50:32 PM

imranfarid99 said:
Dont waste time on deciding get the best...

Both of the NZXT are the best one's still
Plenty of room , Best Cooling with Six Fans ...Best design , Side Panel and the NZXT TEMPEST EVO Crafted Series is a Beast...


Hope this Helps


So for $100, how does it stack up to the lian li k62?(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

I always here how lian li make great cases, but I'm not for sure if the lancool line is as great and reliable. As for the antec 302, is the cooling better than the CM 690 II advanced?
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May 1, 2012 2:58:06 PM

Antec P280...120$ and is a great gaming case without the atrocious exterior of most NZXT cases. No side window but the case more than makes of for that with cooling prowess as well as it being a silent case. Has dust filtering and USB 3.0, as well .
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a b ) Power supply
May 1, 2012 3:29:44 PM

seanmcd91 said:
I always here how lian li make great cases, but I'm not for sure if the lancool line is as great and reliable. As for the antec 302, is the cooling better than the CM 690 II advanced?

The concept of reliability applied to a case sounds a little funny to me, how does a computer case 'fail' ?

As for cooling, I personally wouldn't worry much about it unless you plan to take things to extreme levels for air cooling. Nearly all cases have the same fan arrangement anyhow: two 120mm or one 140mm front intake fan(s), one rear exhaust fan in-line with the CPU area, one 140mm blow-hole fan aligned on top of the CPU area, one fan on left panel for the expansion slots area and (sometimes) an extra fan behind the motherboard. Not much difference in airflow configuration options between most cases, the 302 adds a filtered air intake directly below the PSU to the usual vent complement.
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a c 111 ) Power supply
May 1, 2012 3:30:47 PM

NZXT Phantom? Or the Phantom 410!
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a b ) Power supply
May 1, 2012 4:46:49 PM

i would suggest 400r(if you want rugged hardcore looks)-



OR phantom 410 if you want sleek and sexy looks-



you got links to both of them,take your pick!
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May 1, 2012 8:11:52 PM

As for reliability I mean, i read all the time about cases being bad, fans not working, usb headers not working, or static problems, etc. But yeah other than that a case really can't fail, i mean it's just metal. I like that 400r, it looks nice and simple too... Thanks for clearing up that they all have the same airflow. I will try to choose now between all of these.
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May 1, 2012 11:53:12 PM

Just wanted to say that the Arc Midi by Fractal Design is a very good case if you like simplistic styling. Also has very good quality parts and many good features including good airflow, good cable management, dust filters, removable hdd rack, just to name a few.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a c 111 ) Power supply
May 2, 2012 12:32:38 AM

Will you ever go custom water-cooling? If so, the cm 690 ii advanced will be the best choice.
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a b ) Power supply
May 2, 2012 3:10:08 AM

^how?
for custom watercooling,fractal arc midi or haf 922 are best choices.
here you can see the potential of arc midi-


haf 922-


BTW 500r can also fit some good watercooling loop-
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