Best mini-ITX PC cases for 2023.

Best mini-ITX PC cases for 2023.

The Best Mini-ITX Cases for Building a Great ITX PC

When it comes to building a powerful and compact ITX PC, one of the most important components to consider is the PC case. A mini-ITX case offers numerous advantages over traditional mid-tower or full-tower cabinets. Not only do they occupy less desk space, allowing for more room to accommodate additional peripherals and accessories, but they also offer enhanced portability, making them convenient for transportation to LAN parties or a friend’s residence.

In this article, we will explore some of the best mini-ITX cases available on the market, highlighting their features, benefits, and why they are a top choice for building a great ITX PC.

Cooler Master Masterbox NR200

Cooler Master Masterbox NR200

Value for money mini-ITX case

The Cooler Master Masterbox NR200 is one of the highest-rated mini-ITX cases available, offering excellent performance at an affordable price. Starting at $100, this 18.25-liter case is available in standard black or white color options, as well as cyan blue, orange, pink, and purple colors for a slightly higher cost. It also has a variant called NR200P, which features a tempered glass side panel in addition to the standard mesh panel.

The NR200 can accommodate mini-ITX or mini-DTX motherboards with an SFX or SFX-L power supply and up to a triple-slot GPU. It supports various fan configurations, including two 120mm fans on the top and bottom, a 92mm fan on the rear, and two 120mm or 140mm fans on the side panel bracket. The case is also compatible with air coolers up to 155mm tall and supports water-cooling radiators up to 280mm on the side or 240mm on the bottom.

For storage, the NR200 offers decent mounting options, allowing for the installation of three 2.5-inch drives or two 2.5-inch drives and one 3.5-inch drive. It comes bundled with two 120mm fans for mounting on top and a rear 92mm fan, depending on the model purchased. There is also the option to upgrade to the NR200P Max, which includes a pre-installed 280mm AIO cooler, an 850W SFX Gold PSU, and a PCIe Gen 4 riser cable.

SSUPD Meshlicious

SSUPD Meshlicious

Premium full-mesh mini-ITX case

The SSUPD Meshlicious, from Sunny Side Up Designs (a sub-brand of Lian Li), stands out as an excellent tower-style mini-ITX case with robust expandability options. Featuring high-quality powder-coated steel mesh panels on all sides, including the front, sides, and top, the Meshlicious is available in white or black color options. Users can choose between a full-mesh version or a single tempered glass side panel version to showcase their components.

With a sandwich-style layout, the Meshlicious offers a unique design that allows for the mounting of up to a 280mm AIO liquid cooler on the front, which is impressive for a sub-15-liter case. It also has a special bracket for mounting three 2.5-inch drives or two 3.5-inch drives (if using a small-form-factor GPU). The case supports graphics cards with up to a 336mm length and four slots in a standing orientation, or up to 211mm in a vertical orientation (without a radiator). It is compatible with SFX or SFX-L power supplies, with limited space for cable management when using an ATX PSU.

The Meshlicious offers excellent thermal performance and can accommodate a surprising number of components for its size. However, the build process can be tricky, and the bottom placement of the GPU I/O may be inconvenient for some users.

Fractal Design Terra

Fractal Design Terra

High-quality aluminum mini-ITX case

The Fractal Design Terra is a tasteful mini-ITX case that stands out from the crowd with its elegant aluminum finish and unique wood accent on the front. With a sandwich layout featuring an adjustable spine, this case offers flexibility in internal configuration to provide more space for either the GPU or the CPU cooler.

Cooling options in the Terra are limited, with only a single 120mm fan mount at the bottom. The case supports air coolers with a maximum height of 77mm when configured for maximum CPU-cooler clearance or 48mm when configured for maximum GPU clearance. Liquid cooling options are not available, limiting the case to CPUs that are less power-hungry. GPUs with a length of up to 322mm, a width of 72mm, and a height of 145mm (depending on the spine configuration) can be installed. The Terra accommodates only mini-ITX motherboards and is limited to SFX and SFX-L power supplies.

Available in graphite (black) and silver color options, the Terra is also offered in a unique jade green hue, making it one of the most distinctive cases available. However, with a price tag of $180 and limited availability, it may not be the most accessible option for everyone.

Phanteks Evolv Shift XT

Phanteks Evolv Shift XT

A unique extendable mini-ITX case

The Phanteks Evolv Shift XT is one of the most innovative and versatile mini-ITX cases on the market. Its standout feature is its unique top section, which allows for easy customization to accommodate different cooling solutions. Users can opt for a single air cooler with up to 72mm clearance, add two additional 120mm fans on top, or even install a full-size 240mm AIO radiator and fans for optimal thermal performance.

Featuring a premium aluminum exterior with removable panels on the front, top, and bottom, the Evolv Shift XT offers a traditional sandwich-style layout. It supports mini-ITX motherboards, SFX/SFX-L power supplies, and up to a triple-slot 342mm GPU. The case provides three-level mounting options, allowing users to adjust the configuration as needed. Additionally, an infinity mirror with ARGB lighting on the front adds a touch of flair for RGB enthusiasts.

Corsair 2000D Airflow

Corsair 2000D Airflow

Best vertical mini-ITX case

The Corsair 2000D Airflow is an excellent option for those with limited desk space who prefer a vertical mini-ITX case. This compact chassis offers versatile cooling options, including the ability to install a large air cooler for the CPU and up to a 360mm AIO cooler on the side. The front can accommodate three 120mm fans, and there is also the option to install two slim fans at the back for additional GPU cooling.

The 2000D Airflow supports GPUs with up to a 365mm length, and unlike many other mini-ITX cases, it does not require riser cables as the GPU can directly slot into the motherboard at the rear. For storage, it can accommodate up to three 2.5-inch SSDs, but there is no provision for larger hard drives.

With support limited to SFX or SFX-L power supplies, cable management can be a challenge, particularly with the power supply cables. Another potential drawback is the placement of the motherboard rear I/O at the bottom, which can be inconvenient in everyday use. However, the front I/O is well-equipped, featuring a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port, two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, and an audio jack. The case is available in white or black and incorporates mesh panels for optimal airflow. Pricing starts at $139, although it is currently available for $119 on Amazon.

Conclusion

Choosing the right mini-ITX case is crucial when building a compact and powerful ITX PC. The Cooler Master Masterbox NR200, SSUPD Meshlicious, Fractal Design Terra, Phanteks Evolv Shift XT, and Corsair 2000D Airflow are all standout cases that offer unique features and benefits.

Whether you prioritize value for money, premium design, expandability options, or versatility in cooling solutions, there is a mini-ITX case on this list that fits your needs. Consider the form factor, available space, cooling requirements, and aesthetic preferences to make an informed decision. With the right case, you can build a great ITX PC that combines power and portability in a compact package.