Lian Li PC-9N – The World’s First PC Case Sans Motherboard Tray

Posted on February 22, 2013 9:30 AM by Rob Williams

Lian Li has just announced its newest mid-tower case, the PC-9N. While it looks just as elegant and purposeful as most of Lian Li’s offerings, the company’s newest offering’s greatest feature lies inside its brushed aluminum structure: it’s the first mass-produced PC chassis that eschews the traditional motherboard tray. Instead, it has what the company calls a “railing mount design,” which is a series of strategically-positioned rails that conform to the locations of the mounting holes on ATX and MATX motherboards.

Lian Li PC-9N Chassis 01

Lian Li claims that its new motherboard mounting solution facilitates enhanced airflow under the motherboard. An additional benefit to this new mounting system is much-improved cable management possibilities. And although the company never mentions it, eliminating the traditional motherboard tray has one other user-friendly advantage: it enables virtually free access to the CPU socket’s backplate, which in turn facilitates easy CPU cooler mounting/dismounting.

Lian Li PC-9N Chassis 02

Aside from its revolutionary motherboard mounting system, the PC-9N also boasts other user-friendly features: toolless ODD mounting; a HDD rack that supports up to three 3.5″ HDDs and one 2.5″ SSD/HDD which can be rotated along the horizontal axis (to facilitate easy access, optimum airflow into and through the HDD rack, and optimize cable management per the end user’s specific needs); a 140mm front intake fan, with the option to mount a second 140mm fan for even more air intake capacity; eight vented expansion slots held in place by thumb screws; and an I/O panel at the top of the case that has two USB 3.0 connectors, HD audio jacks, and a door to protect the I/O connections from dust and to preserve the case’s elegant good looks.

Lian Li says the PC-9N will be available in the USA at the end of February. MSRP is $109.99. Two color options will be offered: silver and black.

  • Marfig

    Would be great to see a Ryan’s review on this one. I’m particularly curious as to how much this may affect cable management.

    • JD Kane

      I’m quite excited to see this evolution in case design, and am very curious to see whether or not other manufacturers follow this path.

      Just based on initial impressions, I think this is a homerun of an idea. It’s fairly easy to replace the motherboard tray’s contribution to a chassis’ structural integrity using strategically-positioned braces, which is what Lian Li looks to have done here. You get the same structural integrity using less material. That just tickles the wannabe structural engineer in me no end. :D

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