Questions 11 Through 15
Q. How and where did you manufacture?
A. We are based in Los Angeles, CA and all manufacturing is done in house. Aluminum sheets come in and cases come out! This machine punches out the parts in aluminum sheet. It has a large rotating head with I think around 30 or so tool stations. Here is a video of one in use (not ours). Once punched they get bent in a press brake. Here is another video of one in use, and again, not ours. There is a lot more involved, but these machines are the heart of the shop.
Q. Are there plans to move towards other products than cases? Pre-built computers like iBuyPower? Peripherals? Other expansions?
A. We'll likely stick with cases for the foreseeable future although we could enter into strategic partnerships to distribute compatible products. We'll continue to focus on the high-end enthusiast market as well as government/military and industrial applications as well as OEM accounts. I don't see us ever getting into the mass production market - competition in that sector is going to get very bloody over the next 5 years as the overall desktop PC market shrinks.I'd rather see us provide even more customization options (at lower cost) and get our "concept to ship" time down to 8-12 weeks to take advantage of emerging trends. Our strategy will be to implement ever-higher levels of automation (possibly with distributed manufacturing facilities in Europe and Asia) to reduce shipping times, improve quality, lower cost and provide more options.
Q. Does the emergence of living room PC's spark CaseLab's interest (see the Alienware Alpha)? Do you have plans for smaller cases?
A. I don't see us entering the SFF (Small Form Factor - sub 22 liters) market anytime soon if ever.
Q. I want to build my first computer. I don't think I'm experienced enough for water cooling yet. What size case would you suggest?
A. Basic water cooling is really not that complicated, but what makes it confusing is all the options. If you start with a single 240 rad (or similar), pump/res combo and some soft tubing you may find is pretty straight forward. Companies even makeso you know everything will work together. The only thing to be aware of is making sure your case can fit the rad. You know our cases will! For a basic single GPU system you really can't beat mITX. It has come a long way over the years. Currently the Mercury S3 is our only mITX case, but the X2 (which may be better for you) should be released in the next couple of months.
Q. Do you guys ever see entry into the space occupied by Raspberry Pi and others to offer handsome cases to appeal to a bit more 'contemporary' tastes?
A. The raspberry pi cases really are not our area of focus. We would also probably need to outsource the manufacturing just to be competitive. So I would have to say no on that one.