Gigabyte Luxo M10
We try not to keep any vendor from participating in our round-ups. When we create a story angle, we set a limited number of strict rules, along with a broader array of general review guidelines. These rules and guidelines help vendors to determine the suitability of their own products and ensure our evaluations remain fair.
The rules for this series stated that each case had to support our test platform, including its standard front-panel USB 3.0 connector. Meanwhile, the guidelines made it clear that noisy cases would be at a significant disadvantage. Knowing this, Gigabyte decided to take a run for the value crown with its Luxo M20.
While noise measurements are typically taken at 45° out from the left front edge of each case, actual meter placement is determined by the side facing the component cavity. Most cases just happen to open on the left side. Since the Luxo M10 is a reverse-layout case (the right side exposes the component cavity), we placed the meter at 45° out from the right front edge.
We're not sure this matters, though, considering the case's 0.5 mm-thin steel, lack any noise dampening measures, and many ventilation holes. It's pretty clear that this thing wasn't designed to minimize noise, but rather to maximize airflow at low cost. Perhaps Gigabyte hopes to keep fan speeds low with ample cooling, and simultaneously win over our soft spot for value.
Regardless of whether the Luxo M10 is an ill fit for this series, it does have several very nice features for the low-cost market, such as a lighted power button and hard drive LEDs on both sides of the case. It also fits our minimum criteria for this round-up by sporting internally-connected USB 3.0 ports and enough room to house our barely-oversized motherboard.
The Luxo M10 even has a flip-down cover over its front intake fan to ease cleaning. A mesh sheet similarly covers the power supply intake on the bottom of the case. Unfortunately, the case must be tipped on its side to remove the PSU dust filter.
Being a reverse design, the Luxo M10 reflects the upside-down motherboard trend that was popular a few years back. Hopefully we see better results today, since the problem of hot chipsets paired to un-wicked heat pipes have been eliminated on most boards.
There are two grommets intended for external liquid-cooling lines on the rear of the case. That raised portion on the left side panel provides additional room for cable management.