When Razer announced its Tomahawk ATX chassis, the first thing that stood out to me is that it appeared to carry the same internals as the Lian Li Lancool II Mesh, a case that we awarded full marks. As such, the Tomahawk ATX is off to a good start, but there’s one big elephant in the room that we must address before we continue: this Razer chassis, despite the same foundations, costs a mighty $200 – twice the price of Lian Li’s excellence.
Therefore, when Razer offered to send a sample, I was very curious to find out where the added $100 went. So without further ado, let's find out whether the Tomahawk ATX is actually worth its price tag and deserving of a spot on our Best PC Cases list, or whether you should save yourself some money and opt for the excellent Lancool II Mesh instead.
|Motherboard Support||Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, ATX, E-ATX (280 mm)|
|Dimensions (HxWxD)||18.7 x 9.3 x 19.5 inches (475 x 235 x 494 mm)|
|Max GPU Length||15.1 inches (384 mm)|
|CPU Cooler Height||6.9 inches (176 mm)|
|Max PSU Length||8.3 inches (210 mm)|
|Internal Bays||3x 3.5-inch|
|Row 8 - Cell 0||2x 2.5-inch|
|Front I/O||2x USB 3.0|
|Row 11 - Cell 0||3.5 mm Headphone|
|Row 12 - Cell 0||3.5mm Mic|
|Other||2x (Removable) Tempered Glass Panel|
|Row 14 - Cell 0||Chroma RGB Controller|
|Front Fans||None (Up to 2x 140mm, 3x 120mm)|
|Rear Fans||1x 120mm (Up to 1x 120mm)|
|Top Fans||None (Up to 2x 140mm)|
|Bottom Fans||None (Up to 2x 120 mm on PSU shroud)|
|RGB||Yes, Razer Chroma|
Circling around the outside of the chassis, it’s clear that Razer opted for a very clean and blocky style. It’s quite appealing really, as paired with the extremely dark-tinted glass panels, the chassis has a heft, power, and mystery to it. This thing does look like a $200 case.
But don’t miss me when I say heft – this is a chonky 30-pound (13.5 kg) boy. I’m not kidding when I say it was a challenge to take out of the box.
Okay, so maybe I’ve been away from the gym too much in this pandemic, but all the 0.8mm thick steel and oceans of tempered glass do give the case a quality feel. It’s built like an absolute tank and that goes a long way toward justifying the price point.
Both the tempered glass panels swing outwards to open up. First, you press them once to click them out, after which you can pull the door away from the magnet – or if you don’t want to get fingerprints on them, just grab the panels from below to pull them out. After opening all the way, you can lift both panels off their hinges.
And with the hinges, Razer went the extra mile. Whereas the Lancool II has hinges on the outside that kind of look a little cheap, Razer designed a hinge that sits on the inside of the case, giving a much cleaner appearance on the outside – even if it’s at the back of the case.
Front IO comprises USB-C (something that’s an optional extra on the Lancool II Mesh), two USB 3.0 ports, and discrete headphone and mic jacks.
Turning to the inside of the chassis, on the motherboard side we find space for up to 280 mm wide E-ATX motherboards, though you’ll have to remove the cable management cover to fit such boards. Standard-width ATX boards fit best. GPUs can be up to 15.1 inches (384 mm) long and CPU coolers up to 176mm tall.
The PSU shroud has a door that’s also magnetically held in place and can flip down for access. Here you’ll find a trio of 3.5-inch caddies that slide out toward you. There’s plenty of space here for large PSUs too, with supported lengths of up to 8.3 inches (210mm).
Behind the motherboard tray on the other side of the case you’ll find two 2.5-inch drive bays. These can be moved to the top of the PSU shroud if you want to show off pretty SATA SSDs. You’ll also find the cable management space here with three Velcro straps and the Chroma RGB hub. This hub connects to and is powered through an internal USB 2.0 header.
When it comes to cooling, I suspect things are going to get interesting with the Tomahawk ATX – and I don’t mean that in a good way.
Starting with the good stuff, the case has plenty of room for fans and radiators. You can fit up to two 140mm spinners at the top, two 140mm spinners at the front (or three 120mm units in both cases), two 120mm fans on top of the PSU shroud, and one 120mm spinner at the rear exhaust location. There’s also lots of radiator space in here.
Where things go sour is in the intake design and the included fans – or rather, lack thereof. From the factory, Razer only includes a single 120mm fan, and it isn’t even PWM controlled, nor does it feature any RGB. This isn’t the kind of skimping you expect to see on a $200 case.
That being said, we’ve proved in the past that cases can get away with a single fan, right? Well, yes, but only if the intake is open mesh – which it isn’t here. As you can see in the images above, the front intake for the Tomahawk ATX is severely restricted, with an attempt at filtration behind the already tight perforation on the front edges.
To make matters worse, the case also has a shortcut that air can take around this intake – at the bottom handhold to pull the front panel off. As such, the Tomahawk ATX doesn’t have any real airflow path, nor proper intake filtration – this system will get dirty on the inside faster than other cases.
Fortunately the power supply does have a good air filter, so you won’t need to tear it apart for cleanup jobs.