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Does anyone else miss the way computer cases used to be?

Zhalo

Rez the Wolfdog
I honestly don't like how high-end PC cases are today. There is a place for tempered glass and RGB, I thought glass side panels were really cool when they first started to be a thing I still do. Right now though there is no new mid-high end options coming out nowadays for purely functional cases with lots of drive bays and good thermals. I miss when the CM HAF and Silverstone Raven Series were cool. I will take a case with a metal side panel with an acrylic window any day over a glass panel. That way I won't be afraid I will accidentally break it taking it to a LAN party (back when the world was sans pandemic at least) or just kicking it by mistake. Right now I have a Rosewill Blackhawk (non-ultra) I got 5 years ago for $70. It has 4 USB2, 2 USB3, Mic/Headphone, a hot swap bay on top, lots of 3.5in and 5in drive bays and airflow wherever you could ever want it. They just don't make cases like that any more. I know why these cases went out of style, but I would think there would still be enough interest in a case like that for at least one or two case manufacturers to still make something similar.

I'm curious if anyone else feels the same way I do about modern PC cases.

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Kellan Meig'h

Kilted Luthier
Back when I built the computers for my business and home, I preferred the Antec "Server Series" case, particularly the one that had about a dozen internal bays for drives. Big side panel that was no-tools, cover that was no-tools, had the rails to mount your drives on so they would hot-swap. I used the short ones at home, the tall ones at work. always used a 1000W power supply, might have been Antec, too.

What I liked about the cases was the fact they held a butt-tonne of fans for cooling. I thought that was good until I built my first liquid-cooled system. Silence is bliss. Just a couple of tiny fans to regulate the airflow through the case to the radiator.

Anymore, the next computer I build will be more like assemble. One of those tiny systems that attach to the back of the monitor, wireless keyboard and mouse. No more mile of wire hanging off the edge of the desk.
 

FunniValentine

Valentine
Ehh? The designs I miss, but the luxury of building machines with pre-made switch pins all bundled up and molded together so I don't have to forget from last time I put one together and have to finger through the manual to get the config just right is too nice. If we go even further back, I would totally love if I could get a beige, sleeper case with modern internal layouts to make a retro machine.
 

Lucyfur

United forever in friendship and labour
Banned

I was hoping you would show a case that looked like it had a turbine on the front because, lol I do miss those XD
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
^ Those existed!? I've never seen one before!

I like the modern looks of the new cases, but I totally miss when they had built in SD readers. ): My USB SD reader just burnt out and it's such a pain. I want to upload photos of my cat. D:
 

FunniValentine

Valentine
^ Those existed!? I've never seen one before!

I like the modern looks of the new cases, but I totally miss when they had built in SD readers. ): My USB SD reader just burnt out and it's such a pain. I want to upload photos of my cat. D:
YES. Why the hell do cases not offer SD card ports while also cutting any ability for a CD/ROM slot that could be used for dedicated port expansion to add such a thing in the front of the case? Dumb dumb dumb.
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
YES. Why the hell do cases not offer SD card ports while also cutting any ability for a CD/ROM slot that could be used for dedicated port expansion to add such a thing in the front of the case? Dumb dumb dumb.
Right!? I like a lot of the new cases (totally don't window shop on pcpartpicker *cough* >~>) but I find lots of benefits for having SD readers. I'm sure they can make space for them. My current case just has empty space above the USB ports even! Seems like such a waste to not include them.
 

FunniValentine

Valentine
Nah, I don't need card readers or drive bays, so I can't wait when sff cases to become mainstream, just look at this beauty

View attachment 100540
I love ITX builds. I've always wanted one. Especially ever since Lian Li released this beauty of a case, with a handle built in making it a competent option for LAN parties.
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Pomorek

Antelope-Addicted Hyena
All depends on what you need and why, but I'm perfectly happy with my Zalman Z1 which I got a couple of years ago for maybe $50 equivalent. No-tools side panels, no-tools drive rails (SSDs do need mounting brackets, but that just shows the age of this design), front and rear fans included, basic dust filters included (and they work!), power supply at the bottom with its own air intake, some space under the panels to run at least some of the cables there, seemingly some basic provisions for liquid cooling (never tried, can't say more). Black, stylish, no weird stuff going on. Just checked, and it still seems to be available.

I seriously loathe this RGB shit they push these days, by the way. Makes everything look like a cheap toy for kindergarten kids. Also these damn blue LEDs seem to hurt my eyes.
 
Personally I do not miss them too much.

Design has generally improved on cases cases if you'd ask me. The average case from the bigger manufacturers are easier to work in, better quality to some extent and they look better(for most parts). OP has a valid point though that we are in a bit of a trend where a lot of cases slap on tempered glass panels and don't leave enough intake which is pretty stupid. But the trend of tempered glass as a whole I do enjoy since some of these cases look damn nice and easily is a main set piece in your room. A desktop was never meant to be moved around a lot. There's also some sweet plain cases out there without any tempered glass at all as well more suiting for people who'd go to a lan party every week. Things change with time and the old norm of "gamery curves", acrylic glass windows in weird shapes, plasticty shapes too I don't miss that much, I do feel like there's at least a tad bit more options out there nowadays as in the type of case and how it looks and what you get for your money.

Dust filters being more of a norm, HDD bays easier to take drives in and out from, included light with RGB so you can se the color you want instead of a set blue or red. SSD trays behind the mobo tray, PSU bays to hide away all your cables, extra grommets. Just quality of life improvements that a lot of cases didn't have. Your average case are more likely to have most of these nowadays.

Last two cases now has been a Fractal Design Define C tempered glass with one tempered side panel to my current Lian Li-011 Dynamic with both a front and side. Thing is built like a tank and has everything.

Don't get me wrong though, I have a soft spot for some of the cases because they were interesting and I still also have my Antec Nine hundered with some parts in it for an XP gaming machine:

Love that thing to bits as it was my first own gaming computer.

I also have a weird softspot for this case:

Freaking yellow wavemaster.
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
Last two cases now has been a Fractal Design Define C tempered glass with one tempered side panel to my current Lian Li-011 Dynamic with both a front and side. Thing is built like a tank and has everything.

I actually really love the Fractal cases. I plan to get a Meshify C sometime, probably after I finish saving for a monitor. I'm looking to build a whole new pc slowly and potentially give my current one to one of my siblings.
 

Yakamaru

Level 32 Knight
I miss those cases, yes.

My previous computer had an NZXT Big Tower in black and orange. Still is my backup computer, too.

 
I actually really love the Fractal cases. I plan to get a Meshify C sometime, probably after I finish saving for a monitor. I'm looking to build a whole new pc slowly and potentially give my current one to one of my siblings.
I'd say it's one of the better smaller cases that also looks good. In hindsight I'd get the Meshify C as well as the airflow is so much better in it. Cannot say I'm sold on the new fractal cases that came after however, but these ones were golden and very clean looking. Quite easy to build in as well.
 

Yakamaru

Level 32 Knight
I miss the 56k dial up tone:confused:
SKREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

goat gets murdered in the background. And Vanessa goes on a murder spree in Minecraft
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
I'd say it's one of the better smaller cases that also looks good. In hindsight I'd get the Meshify C as well as the airflow is so much better in it. Cannot say I'm sold on the new fractal cases that came after however, but these ones were golden and very clean looking. Quite easy to build in as well.

Oh for sure. After my GPU overheated a couple years ago I went crazy looking for cases that have excellent airflow to prevent anything like that happening again. Came across the Meshify C's and was sold. Love the design of the mesh, along with the TG. You can buy custom colored meshes for them now leaving lots of room for customizability with RGB fans and custom LED's. It's also more compact and not a full tower, which I love. My current case is a full tower (it's a pre-built Dell computer) and it's massive. I like the look of the more compact and clean cases.
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Oh for sure. After my GPU overheated a couple years ago I went crazy looking for cases that have excellent airflow to prevent anything like that happening again. Came across the Meshify C's and was sold. Love the design of the mesh, along with the TG. You can buy custom colored meshes for them now leaving lots of room for customizability with RGB fans and custom LED's. It's also more compact and not a full tower, which I love. My current case is a full tower (it's a pre-built Dell computer) and it's massive. I like the look of the more compact and clean cases. View attachment 100714
Makes sense. Are you fully set on the atx formfactor or have you considered ITX?
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
Makes sense. Are you fully set on the atx formfactor or have you considered ITX?
Ye I'll probably stick with the ATX. I checked out the ITX stuff a bit ago and decided it wasn't for me, but I've seen loads of people get really creative on how they set theirs up. Even seen a guy turn their desk into one!
 
Ye I'll probably stick with the ATX. I checked out the ITX stuff a bit ago and decided it wasn't for me, but I've seen loads of people get really creative on how they set theirs up. Even seen a guy turn their desk into one!
Probably the right call, you always get a little bit extra hassle as soon as you go smaller. If it weren't for the fact that I have so much storage drives I'd probably go with an ITX build myself. There's a lot of interesting small form factor cases, also get a lot more space on your desk(I prefer to have my computers off the floor or as a set piece in the room).
 

Lyrule

Warrior of the Sun
Probably the right call, you always get a little bit extra hassle as soon as you go smaller. If it weren't for the fact that I have so much storage drives I'd probably go with an ITX build myself. There's a lot of interesting small form factor cases, also get a lot more space on your desk(I prefer to have my computers off the floor or as a set piece in the room).
Fair points.
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I also prefer to keep my computers off the floor. Less dust and debris that way. I currently have mine up on a separate stand next to my desk.
 

Kellan Meig'h

Kilted Luthier
My work tower when I had my General Contracting company was one of those Antec server series towers that I did the liquid cooling thing. Ever so quiet. My brother wanted the same one, only no liquid cooling. Ended up putting something like eleven fans in it, filling every fan hole including the two in the clear side cover. Sounded like an F-4D Phantom taking off when the load would go up using a CAD material take-off program. He bought the CHEAP fan speed controller that was just really idle and wide open.

I miss those endless days at Frys Electronics, searching for the parts I needed. Now that Frys is gone, I don't know where to go look for computer parts where I can hold them before buying them.
 
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