by William Kelley on May 27, 2009 in Mid-Tower
When building a PC on a budget, one of the most difficult components to pick out is the chassis. For many, $100 is the sweet-spot, as it usually gives a solid design and great aesthetics. With the help of the Beta, though, NZXT helps prove that even $50 chassis’ can handle the task at hand just fine, and after our look, we’re impressed.
I must say that overall, I am very pleased with the BETA. When I first removed it from the packaging, I had yet to research the retail pricing. I was taken back when I found out the cost is roughly $50US. I have yet to see another fully painted chassis in this price level. It is amazing how something as simple as paint can really dress up the inside.
The overall design also merits some praise. The optional dual 120mm side intakes are a nice feature and the grating is large so there will be little restriction. The rear panel is also grated for extra airflow and the addition of the mesh PCI slot covers is like the icing on the cake. I am just not used to seeing this level of attention to detail in this price range.
One feature that is usually underwhelming is tool-less drive devices. Here again I was greeted with a very simple yet extremely effective design that holds the drives as tight as screws. They are also easily adjustable and allow for the end user to set the depth of their ODD drives to their taste. The HDD rails are easy to use and effective and the addition of locking screws was a pleasant surprise.
I was somewhat disappointed with the lack of a rear exhaust fan. When you combine the heat load of the processor, graphics card, motherboard and memory there is just too much stagnant air inside. The front intake fan is forced to blow around the hard drive cage so it loses quite a bit of effectiveness as well. I would advise anyone purchasing this case to pick at least one extra fan up. It will definitely make a difference.
Overall I give this case a strong 8 out of 10. As I said before, I have never come across a chassis in this price range with so many features. The low-end market has a new benchmark to hit in my mind and it is not going to be easy for the competition to match it. I would humbly suggest the addition of the rear exhaust fan even if the price were to go up slightly, but the lack of it would not deter me for a second to just install my own as well. Make sure you give this one a thorough look if you just can’t cough up the dough for a high-end case.
- Fully painted interior is a high-end touch of class.
- Tool-less hardware very effective.
- High attention to detail.
- Good layout.
- Lack of included rear exhaust fan hurts performance.
- Would like more spots to tie down wiring.
- Included fan somewhat noisy.
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