Hello, I'm looking to buy a new case, because I cheaped out on one and I'm regreting it now. I bought a $30 case thinking "it's just a box that holds all my stuff". Now I know I was dead wrong. It only has 2 spot for fans and they are tiny as hell.
My rig is hot as it is and I'm looking to update my graphics card to something along the lines of a GTX 560 (If you guys could give me some advice on a good video card for around $100 that would be great). So I need a new case with good fans.
My question is, would you guys recommend me getting a full sized case or a mid sized case? My case is mid and it is the definition of cramped.
Mid Tower sized cases are enough for most people that only put the standard amount of hardware in a case (1-2 GPU, few HDDs) and go without dedicated watercooling. Cheap cases are badly laid out and/or as tiny as possible to save as much as possible on production costs. Which means you can not really compare a ~60-70$+ mid tower with one for ~30$.
The mid sized cases you choosed are good, the Shinobi is good value and large enough for your needs.
Anyway, a very good ~100$ card is the HD 6770, next best card for the money is a HD6870 for around 160$. If you want to buy a new GPU, I'd go with the 6870 it will last you a longer and allow for maxed out settings at 1920x1080 for most games.
Appearance is a personal preference but there are a lot of other things that go into a good quality case:
1. Made of quality materials,
2. Good thermal design/layout,
3. Ease of access to the case's interior
4. Sufficient room for ease of working inside the case
5. Cable routing designed into the case and rubber grommets to protect cabling
As the OP found out the hard way....not all cases are equal and that's why he's asking on these forums.
@OP: Whichever cases you are considering, you need to find some reviews that discuss some of the items that I listed above. Appearance is a personal preference but the rest can be evaluated by experienced reviewers. I tend to stay away from cases with a lot of plastic. Plastic is good for mfrs (cheap) to make interesting designs but it tends to crack easily. Full towers are nice beacuse there is a ton of room to work inside, but mid-towers are sufficient for almost any build. I have mongloid hands and can work inside well-designed mid-tower cases with ease most of the time. In the end if you want a case to last for years and multiple builds, then get one that is made of quality materials and is well designed/engineered. Take a look at the Corsair 400R/500R, the Fractal Design Define R3, and the Antec 1200.