Skip to main content

Take The Train: Lian Li PC-CK101, Built, Tested, And...Driven?

Unboxing And Initial Thoughts

Packaging and Contents

The PC-CK101L makes it possible for us to get this locomotive case moving. Its box contains six track segments that are about 20” each. As you might expect, they can all be attached to each other. The box also contains a battery-powered motor kit.

The battery compartment holds four 1.5 V AA batteries. However, I recommend that you use a rechargeable power source. There is no way to connect the battery box to the PC's power supply, which is annoying. If you want to run the train while the PC is on, like me, you're going to quickly tire of replacing batteries otherwise.

You'd think that Lian Li would include a switch and a charger with this $300+ kit. Fortunately, you can retrofit it yourself if you want. The locomotive’s motor works from 5 V, making it possible to connect it directly to the power supply's 5 V rail.

Ready to get the motor kit installed? First, we have to remove all of the components from the locomotive compartment and move our SSD to the tender. Again, this is annoying, but it's an unavoidable step.

The SSD Winds up on the Floor

Right about now, we're happy that the FSP power supply has two separate SATA leads. One stays in the case, powering the optical drive. The other has to be run into the tender, since Lian Li's motor kit forces the relocation of our SSD. This doesn't help the enclosures looks any, but it simply cannot be avoided. If you want to get meticulous, use some black cable ties, which unfortunately don't come bundled with the case's accessories.

Finally, there is enough room inside the locomotive to install the motor and axles.

  • Trueno07
    I am so jealous right now, this looked like it was a blast to put together!
    Reply
  • slomo4sho
    I am surprised you didn't use the model with the moving train!
    Reply
  • bit_user
    Not the first time I've seen it, but I still think this case is just an exercise in sheer ridiculousness.

    But since the PC era is coming to an end, who can blame Lian Li for having a little fun while they still can?
    Reply
  • edogawa
    This thing is so awesome...if it wasn't for the noise I would get one...I love trains...
    Reply
  • ASHISH65
    awesome! i want to drive that train
    Reply
  • JOSHSKORN
    The Little Engine That Could...
    Reply
  • g-unit1111
    *Ozzy Osbourne Voice* ALL ABOARD!!! HA HA HA HA....
    Reply
  • bambiboom
    Just brilliant. Finally, a computer case with a bit of style suitable for grownups.

    Taking the mobile computing theme further, and addressing the limitations on computing power, if you had a Dell Precision M6600 or 6700 laptop with a broken screen, how about mounting the components, motherboard , PSU, batteries, drives, Wifi and all? Then, there could be an i7 CPU and a Quadro 4000M, all very quiet and still getting more air than it's used to. And, appropriately, no power cord!

    The idea of a serious, self- propelled workstation steam train model seems the best use possible of this fantastic enclosure idea. That the computer is itself the game is on the borderline of being art.

    And congratulations to Igor Wallossek for an excellent description of something so wonderfully out of the ordinary.
    Reply
  • shikamaru31789
    I remember when I first saw this on Newegg. I thought I'd lost my mind for a moment. It's definitely a unique case.
    Reply
  • ojas
    Tom's Hardware's German team has a lot of fun, i can see :D

    Really enjoyable read, Igor! Also got to know about that Gigabyte wireless streamer, should prove useful!

    Nice house btw :)
    Reply