Best Mini-ITX Cases 2021
Recently small form factor builds are becoming a trend and for all the best reasons. We all know as the technology advances, efficiency of products increases and their size decreases and this is exactly what happens with Mini-ITX cases. A lot of traditional ATX with mid-tower builds are planning to build a smaller but powerful system. Mini -ITX cases are small in size but they are as capable as any other system. Every day new companies are creating smaller and more capable mini-ITX systems because of their popularity.
These days a lot of gamers are buying the mini-ITX build cases and disposing of the bulky mid-tower build towers. They think that it is nice to a PC which is the same size as the Xbox OneX but is still as efficient as its bigger counterparts. Plus Gamers with a limited budget also go for mini-ITX since they are cheaper. We have listed the Best Mini-ITX Cases 2021 in the following table.
Our Recommendations for Best Mini-ITX Cases
LOUQE Ghost S1 MKII
DELL XPS 13 9360 is one of the last laptops on the list and the reason for the inclusion of this product is that XPS-series laptops are praised a lot due to their design and features. Since most XPS laptops are north of the $1000 price range, XPS 13 9360 remains one of those models which you can buy for less than $1000. The laptop is available in two colors, rose gold with black carbon fiber palm rest, and platinum silver with black carbon fiber palm rest. The laptop is although not as thin as the latest models, it still offers impressive design; especially the thin bezels of the screen look very beautiful.
There are three screen options in this laptop; 1080P IPS non-touch display, 1080P IPS touch display, and 3200 x 1800 IGZO IPS touch display with a peak brightness of 400 Nits, where the display size is 13.3 inches. The 4K panel allows you to take care of all tasks related to colors efficiently since the color reproduction of this 4K panel is really good. The laptop provides support for 7th and 8th generation Intel processors, up to Intel Core i7-8550U, providing four cores and eight threads. The stock RAM options are limited at 16 GB, although you might be able to increase the RAM capacity by custom RAM sticks. The laptop also allows a maximum of 2 TB of storage.
This laptop too, like the Lenovo X1 Yoga, does not provide a discrete graphics card and would suffer greatly in graphical tasks. As for the I/O, it offers 2 x USB Type-A ports, 1 x audio jack, 1 x full-sized SD card reader, and 1 x Noble lock slot. It offers a 60WHr battery that can provide up to 22 hours of battery timing with productivity applications and 13 hours of battery timing with video playback. Overall, DELL XPS 13 9360 is great for those people who want to get their hands on XPS-series laptops but still don’t want their bank balance to run out completely.
- Premium Quality.
- Best Cooling system.
- Compatible with advanced graphic cards etc.
- It is a little expensive.
- If you decide to install the larger radiator then the size of the case might increase too.
Fractal Node 202(10.2L) is the recommended case for console/HTPC style setups. The design of Fractal Node 202 (10.2L) is sleek and elegant. It is flat in shape so it can fit in any space. It can easily be kept under a TV console. You can choose to place it both vertically and horizontally as it suits you. Node 202 (10.2L) is a compact case mini-ITX PC with only 10.2L volumes. It has 3 slots for graphic cards of about 310mm in length. It also supports CPU coolers up to 56 mm in height.
Although the Scythe Bug Shuriken 2 rev.B is the recommended CPU cooler for Node 2020 as it will give the best thermal cooling. The main attraction of this case is its price. It is far cheaper as compared to the cases we have discussed so far. It costs only $80 which is totally appropriate according to its features. This is an even better choice than Sliger SM55 for those who are looking forward to buying a mini-ITX in a tight budget.
It is a beautifully designed compact case that can even be used for a gaming set-up and it will work as fine as any other ATX traditional builds mid-towers. This makes Node 202 (10.2 L) a great choice for gamers who are just starting gaming or gamers with a tight budget. However, one thing that you should keep in mind is that if you use CPU cooler with Node 202 (10.2 L) you will need to go for a low profile RAM so that the CPU cooler could fit in. If you are okay with it then you should go for Node 202 (10.2L) since it is a good mini motherboard with a small budget.
- It is cost-effective since it is cheap as compared to Sliger SM550 (9.7L).
- Sleek design.
- You need to have a low profile RAM for a CPU Cooler to fit in.
The Cougar QBX (19.9L) is regarded as the best budget mini-ITX case available in the market. It is available for just $50 which is such a good price. It is the best option for people who are looking for a small form factor build case but do not want to spend a lot on it. Because of its price, it is known as the best option for people with a tight budget. It also provides good airflow and thermal performance. Even though it is very cheap but it still functions as it is supposed to. It provides good thermal performance.
It also supports graphics cards up to 350mm in length and CPU cooler of about 105mm. These features are good enough for a case that costs this much. It is even compatible with ATX form factor PSUs. However, the recommended CPU cooler for the Cougar QBX case is the Cyrorig M9 which is also very cost-effective just like Cougar QBX itself. It is also compatible with the Core i5 or Ryzen 5 systems. Its layout is very similar to the Ncase M1 and it provides good airflow.
The cooling performance of this case is excellent for its reasonable price.However, its build quality is average. It’s not too bad but you cannot compare it to Ghost S1 or A4-SFX in terms of build quality. You can buy this mini case as long as you are ready to compromise on the build quality. But it’s still a good choice for gamers who are looking forward to setting a budget gaming set up. It costs only $50 and it provides decent thermal and very impressive airflow performance. It’s a great choice for someone who is looking forward to buying their first mini motherboard in a budget.
- Good airflow and cooling performance.
Thermaltake Core V1
Thermaltake Core V1 is cubed shaped case that provides optimized airflow and cooling performance. It has a tool-free drive bay design and it is known for providing maximum cooling. It’s a good option for both gamers and regular users if they are looking forward to getting a motherboard with an exceptional cooling setup. It has two chambers while the upper chamber is responsible for cooling performance and the lower chamber is responsible for PSU and cable management.
It provides optimum interior space so that you can install the additional cooling setup. It also has two hidden 2.5”/3.5” Drive Bays. Thermaltake Core V1 also provides advanced ventilation as it supports all types of cooling systems like air cooling units and DIY/AIO liquid cooling systems. It also comes with a large 200 mm fans preinstalled on the front side and two mm 80mm turbo fans at the rear side. Hence you can play any game you want on your PC but your motherboard will not heat up.
It has an interchangeable side Panel that allows you to adjust the panel to get your desired result i.e. you can arrange them to get the best visual presentation or cooling performance. There are also dust reduction filters and adjustable shockproof rubbers within the bottom panel of the Thermaltake Core V1 which help in prolonging the PSU usage. The list of good features does not stop here. Thermaltake Core V1 also supports handy I/O ports like 3.0 dual USB port along with HD audio connector with the reset and power button right on the side of the front panel.
- Good cost value.
- Excellent cooling system.
- Might not be suitable for everyone.
NZXT H200i is a premium quality case that is made of steel. It is available in four color combinations. It comes with RBG LED strips and several other modern smart features. Its weighs 6.0 Kg and its dimensions are W: 210mm H: 349mm D: 372mm. NZXT H200i has HUE+ and GRID+ with V3 digital controllers. Plus it has a beautiful and aesthetically pleasing all-steel build. It also has a tempered glass panel along with the PSU shroud showcase that adds to the graceful build of the case. It has two preinstalled fans and RBG strips.
It houses a smart device that performs several functions. The CAM-powered smart device that controls the RGB lighting and the performance of the fan. Plus it has many I/O ports. It has two USB 3.1 Gen 11 ports. NZXT H200i also has Adaptive noise reduction that optimizes cooling and balances the noises for the best gaming experience. It features new and better cable management so you do not have to scratch your head and worry about arranging cables so they don’t get entangled.
NZXT H200i features pre-installed channels and straps that have made installation and expansion of cables and components easy. It also supports excellent cooling functions. Plus t has made the installation easy for both AIO and custom loop configurations. It is available in the market for $69.83 which is a reasonable price for NZXT H200i. This case has CAM-powered smart device plus enhanced cable management.
It comes with RBG lighting and two Aer fans that provide aesthetics and good airflow respectively. NZXT H200i is worth its price tag. It’s a good mini motherboard that will run every game you play very smoothly. However, remember the smart device does not always work properly. A lot of users have complained about the malfunctioning of the smart device. You should keep this in mind while buying NZXT H200i. Overall this mini case is a good option in this price range.
- CAM-powered software device
- Good build quality
- The smart device might malfunction.
Corsair Crystal 280X RGB
The Corsair Crystal 280X RGB is a premium Micro-ATX case with three beautiful tempered glass panels. It comes with aesthetic iCUE software-controlled RGB lighting and with a clean look. It has a dual chamber that gives a neat look to the internal layout. It highlights the important component of your PC and keeps the cables and drives neatly tucked into the rear chamber. The dimensions of this case are 398mm x 276mm x 351mm.
It has rooms for about six 120mm fans or a 240 mm radiator in the roof, a 240mm radiator in the front and a 240mm radiator in the floor. Hence it was good thermal performance and airflow. Plus the Corsair Crystal 280X RGB case has an iCUE controller that will allow you to have complete control over your system with the help of CORSAIR iCUE software. The Corsair Crystal 280X RGB also has PSU dust filters in the front, floor and roof that protect your system against dust. It also has direct airflow that provides path cooling.
Cool air is directed towards hottest components to keep their temperature down. This makes Corsair crystal 280X RGB a great choice for gamers who might be into playing heavy games. With this mini motherboard, you can play any game you want but your system won’t heat up. It is compatible with 300mm GPU length and 180mm PSU length which is decent. The maximum CPU cooler length this case can support is 150mm. All these features are pretty decent and good enough to run a computer.
Plus it can adjust two o 3.5” drives and three 2.5” drives that will keep your system organized while giving you enough storage capacity. The price of this case is $169.98. It might be too much for some people since there are cheaper alternatives available. Gamers and other consumers can go and buy another mini-ITX case for the cheap price. However, if you want a motherboard with beautiful design and good features then you should go ahead and buy Corsair Crystal 280X RGB.
- Dual-chamber that enhanced the management of cables and components.
- Aesthetically pleasing.
- Some people might find the price tag to be unreasonable.
Summary for Best Mini-ITX Cases
Now you can evaluate the qualities of every case available on this list and decide which one you want according to your needs and budget. Every case listed here has some pros and cons so as long as you keep them in mind and make a decision according to your needs, you should be okay.
I tried to list premium products with high prices for those who are willing to spend on their case but I also tried to list some suitable low budget cases for those who might be buying them for the first time. Hopefully, you will be able to find the best Mini-ITX cases in this list.
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Frequently Asked Questions
1.Is Mini ITX good for gaming?
No! They are not a suitable option for gaming as they don’t have powerful motherboards and only possess 1 PCIe slot with limited RAM. Plus they are very expensive so small factors are not good choices for gaming.
2.Is Mini ITX the smallest?
Yes! Mini ITX is the smallest motherboard and is designed for those who do not want to cramp their desk because Mini ITX obviously does not require the space required by a normal computer.
3.Are mini ITX worth it?
Well! It depends; if you do not have a tight budget and you do not have a lot of space for your rig then mini ITX is certainly worth investing.
4.Why are mini ITX cases so expensive?
Mini ITX is relatively new and they are very much in demand so obviously, they are going to be expensive. And it takes a lot of effort and innovation to fit in all the working parts of a motherboard into a smaller Mini ITX case so they are expensive.