This is a very nice case and is well worth the money... but i think you're paying more for the name rather than performance... does anybody know here i can get a cheap Lian Li pc case? or a generic aluminum case with fans?
I saw a Lian Li at a trade show, and decided I really wanted an aluminum case. I searched pretty hard to see what was out there. I only found a few: Lian Li, Sky Hawk and Cooler Master. I ended up with the Cooler Master ATC 201. It's pricey (an extravagance, I'll admit) but I love it. It's easy to work on, beautifully crafted, has great air flow, and looks terrific on my desk. I'd be willing to bet you'll see more aluminum cases coming out soon at lower prices. You'll probably have to live with a little lower quality, though.
The top is not necessarily the best place for a fan, despite the fact that heat rises. A computer case is so small that there is little to no air movement caused by heated air rising above cooler air. Without fans, the entire case would be hot, top to bottom. The most important thing by far is proper air movement.
A computer case has so many passages, air restrictions, dead pockets, etc. that trying to pull air straight out the top leaves most of the case uncooled and full of hot air pockets. The most effective cooling designs I've seen have multiple exhaust points which work together to eliminate these dead spots. My PC-60 with the three stock fans turned on "high" along with a dual-fan Enermax keep it very cool.
The other porblem with a top fan is that it robs air movement from the rear exhaust fans which are the most imortant. Their main purpose is to pull as much air as possible from the main air flow across the cpu, motherboard and video card and get it out of the case before it runs across anything else.
Of course every case design is different and those which acually have air flow high on their list of importance (very few it seems) place fans where they work best for the paticular case. The power supply's position and size is a huge turbulance-maker when using a top fan. If the PSU were outside of the case, then the best design would be multiple angles of intake at the bottom and the same for exhaust at the top. For some designs, a top fan may work, but for most it's inefficient and can hurt the case's cooling capabilities.
OLO!!! Sorry! Hehe! It hurt when I spend around $150 on my Lian-Li, but now that it's in the past I'm glad it's sitting here instead of some cheap, beige half-plastic thing. If you need a good review of the Lian-Li, <A HREF="http://www.dansdata.com/pc60.htm" target="_new">CLICK HERE</A>
I took the plunge and ordered a Lian-Li PC 65 aluminum case. It arrived today, and I am ecstatic!! The pictures do not begin to do this gorgeous case justice. I must have spent 10 minutes just fondling this case, feeling the extruded aluminum, the nice rounded edges, and admiring the workmanship. I cannot describe (well ok, I could, heh) how happy I am about my decision to build my system based on this case. This will undoubtedly be the last case I ever buy!
Thanks again for your help, and your recommendations