[section_title title=Closer Look – Exterior]
Closer Look – Exterior
As per normal we will start with the front of the chassis. On this particular Lian Li there is not much of note. The front has a lockable door to keep noise down, I will touch on that later, but to also give the chassis a nice plain aesthetic. At the bottom there is a nice Lian Li badge.
Moving around to the rear of the case, we can see that there are the two standard PCI-e slots for an ITX board as well as the motherboard IO slot. To the right of this slot we have a small ventilated area, for any small tower coolers you may be using, then the bracket for the power supply. Much like the Prodigy, this bracket is removable by undoing the thumb screws. This allows you to attach the plate to the power supply and then slide it back into your chassis for an easier installation. We can also see the little slide-able plate to the right of the PCI slots which is used to hold the slot covers, or a PCI device in place.
Onto the side panel, we can see that Lian Li are keeping with their minimalist design. The side panel is relatively simple with a meshed area towards the back of the chassis to allow any power supply that you wish to install air to breathe. At the bottom of the chassis we can see the aluminium feat that they have decided to use. I think that they go well with the overall aesthetic of the case and give it that little bit of class. The roof again is relatively simple with the only feature of note being the 120mm fan mount. This has been placed off centre to allow for the use of a water cooling radiator or 120mm all in one cooler, primarily to stop any potential fouling with the power supply. This is covered by a relatively fine mesh but is not dust filtered. I do not consider this to be an issue as the front intake is dust filtered and nine times out of ten the roof fans will be used as an exhaust to aid the natural convection of air within the chassis.
With the back panel, one is completely blank bar the small IO panel in the bottom right corner. This consists of two USB 3.0 headers which are wired to a USB 3.0 internal header as well as the 3.5mm headphone and microphone jacks. Where is the power button you say? Well that will be coming up later. We also get a look at the lock for the front door which is a nice feature and I will explain why shortly.
Onto the bottom of the chassis, we can see the rubberised soles of the aluminium feet. These are extremely gripping and did not allow the chassis to move around the wooden floor even under some solid pressure. We can see a large dust filter for the bottom intake which is removable. This is primarily for any graphics cards that may be used, to give them a fresh, clean air supply. To the right of that we can see four holes. These are for an SSD to be mounted. You will need to place the rubber anti-vibration pads in them to be able to mount a SSD but again this is a nice feature as it frees up more cages to be used for hard drive storage. Lastly, on the very right of the floor there is another small dust filter. This is for the front fans intake. Yes this may be small but it is the only intake that the front fan will have when the front door is closed.
Now for a few snaps of what’s on the other side of the front door. As you can see, there are 5 ventilated 5.25 inch drive bay covers. Behind them is a removable hard drive cage which has a 120mm intake fan fitted to it. If this case is removed, you will lose the front intake, but you will be able to utilise all 5 bays for 5.25 inch devices. As this chassis is NAS orientated, I would kit these bays out with IcyDocks and maximize my storage options. This is why I feel the lockable front door is so nice. If you were top kit this out with IcyDock hot swaps, then it would give you easy access to your hard drives, but then the security to keep them safe when you are not around. This chassis is really looking good as a HTPC or a file server. The front bay covers are not dust filtered, which would have been nice to see as there is the potential to let a lot of dust into the system if you were to run the system with the front door open. However, I can see the reason for not doing this, as the air intake for when the door is closed is dust filtered.
Here we get a better look at the power button on the right hand side of the bezel and a closer look at the 5.25 inch bay covers. As you can see the ventilation holes are rather large and will allow a nice unrestricted flow of air through.