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Best PC Cases 2019: Our Tested Picks for Your New Build

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There's far more to consider than attractive looks when choosing a case. Good airflow is key when it comes to keeping your components cool, and noise levels can be affected by everything from the number and type of fans you use to the shape of the fan mounts. Size is also important. You need a case that's big enough to accept the components you have today, as well as what you might want to add in the future.

Choose the right case and it could serve you well through multiple PC builds, thus saving you hundreds of dollars. Pick one that you don't really like to look at, or that doesn't fit the GPU you decide you want a few months down the line, and you might be looking to replace it before that new case smell starts to fade. But with hundreds of available options, from closet-like EATX chassis to tiny sub-shoebox-size Mini-ITX models, where do you start? You're in the right place.

Quick Shopping Tips

  • Figure out what parts you have/want first. Aesthetics are important, but before you get to that, you’ll want to know what motherboard, graphics card, and cooler you’ll be using, plus how many drives you’ll want to install. This will dictate the size and shape of the cases you should be considering.
  • You probably don’t need a huge tower. Multi-card setups seem to be on the wane, storage is always getting denser (plus with an M.2 SSD, your SSD is physically smaller than ever), and coolers are getting more efficient. So unless you are building a component-packed workstation or you just like the looks and upgradability of a full-sized tower, something smaller will probably serve you well.
  • Cooling is key, especially in small cases or with lots of components. Airflow is important, especially when it comes to high-end components in tight spaces. Check our cooler reviews for our cooling test results before buying, and remember that cases with tempered-glass fronts and tops often restrict airflow and may require additional fans.
  • Tiny cases are tougher to build in. This is especially important if you’re a novice builder, but even veterans can find it tough to fit components in a small Mini-ITX chassis. There’s no doubt that compact builds with powerful parts are impressive and space-saving. But remember to set aside extra time and patience—and double-check those key component dimensions—before attempting to build a tiny PC.
  • Choose a chassis that you like to look at. Unless you don’t care about aesthetics at all and are going to be shove your new system far under your desk, your case is likely to spend lots of time in your peripheral vision. Don’t forget to check airflow and that your parts will fit. But after that, find something that appeals to you visually, whether that be a glass-enclosed rainbow of RGB LEDs, or a simple black box with smooth lines and lots of top-mounted USB ports. There are tons of case options out there. You should take the time to find one that appeals to you visually.

Best PC Cases of 2019

Best High-End ATX Case

NXZT H710i

Best High-End ATX Case

Type: Mid-Tower ATX | Motherboard Support: E-ATX, ATX, Micro-ATX, ITX | Card Length Supported: 413mm (16.3 inches) | Storage Support: (7) 3.5", (2) 2.5" | Included Fans: (1) 140mm, (3) 120mm

Incredibly clean aesthetic
Vast array of construction aids
Strong GPU cooling support
Multitude of color combos
CPU cooling/top radiator config can a weak point
Front fans could be more impressive
Expensive
No NZXT Extension Riser

The refreshed H710i exudes a premium feel throughout and performs well, ushering in NZXT's new Smart Device v2 RGB/Fan controller with enhanced CAM2 software, and replacing two of the original version's Type A ports with a single Type-C. Buying it would be an absolute no-brainer if ever it reached the market's $150 sweet spot, yet its quality still overwhelms our reviewer at its original $200.

Read Review: NXZT H710i

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Best Mid-Range ATX Case

be quiet! Silent Base 601

be quiet! Silent Base 601

Best Mid-Range ATX Case

Type: Mid Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX (E-ATX support up to 12 x 10.7 inches) | Card Length Supported: 449mm (17.6 inches) without HDD cage | Storage Support: (3) 3.5” (+ 4x optional) (6) 2.5” (+ 8x optional) | Included Fans: (2) 140mm

Very quiet at idle / daily desktop use
Great dust filtrationBuild quality
Easily accommodates large system components
Poor thermal performance under load
Higher-than-expected acoustics under load
No USB Type-C

The Silent Base 601 isn’t perfect. But solid design, great features and quality craftsmanship make this ATX case an excellent option, so long as you're okay with the absence of tempered glass (in the base model) and RGB lighting. It’s extremely quiet in most use cases, has excellent dust filtering, and is roomy enough for large components.

Read Review: be quiet! Silent Base 601

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Best Budget ATX Case

DIYPC Trio-GT-RGB

Best Budget ATX Case

Type: Mid Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX | Card Length Supported: 383mm (15.07 inches) | Storage Support: (2) 3.5” (3) 2.5” | Included Fans: (4) 120mm ARGB

Low price
Four LED-Lit fans
Great cooling performance
Triple TG panels
No USB 3.1 Gen Type-C
Only one dust filter

The DIYPC Trio-GT-RGB combines a trio of tempered glass panels with four ARGB fans and its own ARGB controller to deliver solid performance and great overall value for as little as $70. Its poor dust filtration and lack of USB 3 Gen2 front-panel connection are common to this price class, which allows its other improvements to tower over competitors.

Read Review: DIYPC Trio-GT-RGB

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Best MicroATX Case

NZXT H400i

NZXT H400i

Best MicroATX Case

Type: Mini Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX | Card Length Supported: 411mm (16.2 inches) | Storage Support: (1) 3.5", (4) 2.5" | Included Fans: (3) 120mm

Good-looking tempered-glass design
Strong thermal performance
Included RGB lighting and fan control
Reasonable price
Slightly noisy at full fan speed
No front-panel USB-C ports

Excellent performance, good-looking design, included RGB and fan control, and competitive price tag come together to make the H400i an excellent choice for MicroATX builders. The case gets a little noisy with fans running at top speed, and there’s no USB-C ports on the front panel. But if those shortcomings sound reasonable to you and your motherboard is smaller than full-size ATX, this case should be on your short list.

Read Review: NZXT H400i

Best Budget MicroATX Case

Cooler Master Silencio S400

Best Budget MicroATX Case

Type: Mid Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX | Card Length Supported: 319mm (12.56 inches) | Storage Support: (4) 3.5", (4) 2.5" | Included Fans: (3) 120mm

Whisper quiet operation
Sleek design
Solid build quality
Reversible front door
SD card slot
5.25-inch ODD slot
Below average thermal performance
No USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
Front radiator support may require hard drive rack removal

We don't often find a case that's lined with sound damping sheets for under $100, let alone one that has a damped front panel door with reversible swing. The Silencio 400 offers these, plus a hidden front panel device bay and adequate dust filtration, along with a classic look. Despite its slightly higher-than-average temperatures, the case's exceptionally reduced noise gave it a great performance balance that could be perfect for your low-noise environment.

Read Review: Cooler Master Silencio S400

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Best Mini-ITX Case

NZXT H200i

NZXT H200i

Best Mini-ITX Case

Type: Mini Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX | Card Length Supported: 325mm (12.8 inches) | Storage Support: (1) 3.5", (4) 2.5" | Included Fans: (2) 120mm

Good looking tempered glass and steel design
Strong thermal performance
Included RGB lighting and fan control
Reasonable price
Top fan placement may conflict with some configurations
Slightly noisy at full fan speed
No front panel USB-C ports

Despite its small size, the H200i the commands a strong lead in our thermal benchmark, running several degrees cooler than competing chassis. Its $130 price tag isn’t cheap, but it’s one of the best-performing Mini-ITX cases we tested in well over two years.

The H200i’s strong performance-per-dollar value, coupled with its good-looking steel and tempered glass design and its included RGB lighting and fan control make it an excellent product for those considering a compact build.

Read Review: NZXT H200i

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Best High-End Showcase PC Case

Cooler Master Cosmos C700M

Cooler Master Cosmos C700M

Best High-End Showcase PC Case

Type: Full Tower | Motherboard Support: Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX, (E-ATX support up to 12 x 10.7 inches) | Card Length Supported: 490mm (19.3 inches) | Storage Support: (5) 3.5” (4) 2.5” (+ 5x converted from 3.5) | Included Fans: (4) 140mm

Excellent thermal performance, liquid cooling support and cable management
Quiet under full load
Expandability
Modular design allows for a variety of configurations
USB-C port
Multiple GPU configurations
Includes GPU riser cable and four 140mm fans
Price
Heavy
Requires two USB 3.0 headers or a 20-pin splitter cable for all four front panel USB 3.0 ports
Reconfiguring the motherboard layout may be tough for beginners

You couldn't ask for a more full-featured, future-proof chassis than the Cooler Master Cosmos C700M. Even with the higher than average price tag, the case's thermal performance, integrated ARGB lighting, multi-layout design and laundry list of features definitely justifies the asking price.

Not everyone can or should spend $440 on a case, but but this is a specialized, high-end chassis specifically built for enthusiasts willing to spend their hard earned money to have the best. And make no mistake about it, the Cooler Master Cosmos C700M is one of the best.

Read Review: Cooler Master Cosmos C700M

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Best XL/EATX Case

be quiet! Dark Base 700

be quiet! Dark Base 700

Best XL/EATX Case

Type: Mid Tower | Motherboard Support: E-ATX, ATX, Micro ATX, Mini ITX | Card Length Supported: 286mm (11.2 inches)/430mm (16.9 inches with HD cage removed) | Storage Support: (7) 3.5, (9) 2.5" | Included Fans: (2) 140mm

Good thermal performance
Great looking chassis
Embedded lighting
Tempered-glass side panel
Low noise
Excellent filtration system
Price
Only two 140mm fans (three would be ideal at this price)

The be quiet! Dark Base 700 is in a class of its own. At first glance it may seem like just another case with a tempered-glass side panel. But upon further inspection, it’s clear how much time and effort went into the design. You'd be hard-pressed to find a more versatile, high-performance enclosure.

It’s clear that be quiet! put a great deal of thought into the design of this chassis’ filtration system. Every intake fan mounting location in the Dark Base 700 is equipped with a washable nylon fan filter. Gaining access to filters requires removing the front panel, but even though the front and bottom filters are extremely long, maintenance and cleaning is a snap.

Read Review: be quiet! Dark Base 700

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All Case Content

  • abryant
    Archived comments are found here: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-3761873/cases.html
    Reply
  • Peter Martin
    Lol. No thanks. Lian-Li for me
    Reply
  • 1_rick
    In the info block at the top, the "review" link for the H200i goes to the Define R6 review; it's correct at the page bottom.
    Reply
  • Scrotus
    Why are front panel USB ports, power switches, activity lights, etc. placed on top of cases? If I interpret correctly a desktop computer indicates it is placed on your desktop. My last 3 or 4 cases had everything on top and I couldn't see them without standing up and the hard drive activity light was out of sight while I'm sitting in my normal position. I wish they would start putting front panel stuff on the front panel and not on top of the case.
    Reply
  • joedavies87
    Why isn’t Phanteks on this list?
    Reply
  • Lucky_SLS
    The pc O11 dynamic will get a 2/5 in Tom's review cuz they test it at stock fan configuration. Maybe that's why it's not in the list XD.

    But you still have the pc o11 air and Lan cool one to test! Reviews for the lancool one digital asap plz!
    Reply
  • invisiblezombie
    A lot of cases aren't available in this part of the world and computer parts are priced at 50% or higher premium against US prices. Amongst those that were, I found Corsair Obsidian and Corsair Carbide cases generally good but overpriced. Personally I liked the Corsair Obsidian 750D most, but purchased what I consider the next best case and much better value for money - the Antec 1100 V2. Being the first desktop I assembled myself, the Antec 1100 made the job a lot easier.
    Reply
  • kep55
    Why do so many of the top cases have glass panels? Glass is a bit of a thermal insulator, add unnecessary weight, and serves no practical purpose in a PC case. If you want to see all your gear, don't bother putting it a case.
    Reply
  • fredfinks
    21359713 said:
    Lol. No thanks. Lian-Li for me

    I had the Lian Li A20. It was an expensive beast, and a damn good case, but i find Fractal Design's cases to be more practical, same build quality - if not better, and definitely quieter.

    The thin aluminium of the Lian Li was prone to vibration.
    Reply
  • fredfinks
    21360113 said:
    Why are front panel USB ports, power switches, activity lights, etc. placed on top of cases? If I interpret correctly a desktop computer indicates it is placed on your desktop. My last 3 or 4 cases had everything on top and I couldn't see them without standing up and the hard drive activity light was out of sight while I'm sitting in my normal position. I wish they would start putting front panel stuff on the front panel and not on top of the case.

    It's a legacy name thing from a time when your CRT monitor sat upon a PC case that was designed to be laid flat & sit on a desk. It then served as a distinction between laptops & other equipment.

    If you have your mid-tower case on your desk you are doing it wrong.
    Its noisier and it eats up valuable desk real estate. Its a big stupid box on a desk - F it off.

    'But how else can we look at the purty lights?!' they might ask. That's where it all went wrong.
    Reply