Four Unique ATX Cases Compared

Internal Construction

The PC-777 received severely rough treatment at some point during shipping, but since it had been shipped twice nobody knew who to blame. Rather than allow the damage to exclude it from today's review, I pulled out all the stops to make sure this case would be ready, including pounding the dents out of the side panel mesh. Speaking of "stops", the optical drive bezel had its stops broken off, a problem that I solved by installing the DVD drive before taking "empty" case shots.

Replacement brackets arrived two weeks following this review, which resolved the shipping damage issue. Notice the two small tabs that prevent the door from folding backwards from the vertical position, and the small spring hanger tab.

With the repair parts in place, the door springs into the upright position without needed the support of a drive from behind. This bracket design allows perfect door alignment even when used with imperfectly-matched drives.

Loosening the appropriate thumbscrew allows a sliding lock to unlatch each side panel. From inside, the PC-777 looks like most other cases, except that the power supply has been relocated to the bottom center.

A low-speed ADDA fan with oversized motor handles exhaust cooling. The oversized motor likely indicates oversized bearings for extended life, and personal experience has convinced me to expect longevity from this manufacturer's parts.

Lian-Li provides thumbscrews for its card slots, rather than the more modern screwless latches. Though these work, limited space makes the use of a screwdriver the easier option. Also notice the two screws along the rear bottom edge of the motherboard tray: Lian-Li is famous for its slide-out motherboard trays, but removal of this particular tray would be better described as a case-disassembly process, so the tray is best left in place.

External drives must be screwed in place, while internal drives can be installed or removed on sliding rails. A 120 mm mid-speed intake fan cools a maximum of five hard drives in the internal cage.

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.