Epic Thanksgiving Giveaway: MSI GeForce RTX 3080 GAMING X TRIO!
TRENDING NOW: Here's our Top 10 best handpicked Amazon Black Friday tech deals!

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review

Chad tells us about Lian Li's full-tower PC-V1000L/B Special Edition computer case. It's expensive and looks great, but is it for you?

@chad_sebring
Published Mon, Apr 20 2015 9:10 AM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 6:59 PM CST
Rating: 88%Manufacturer: Lian Li

Introduction, Specifications and Pricing

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 99 | TweakTown.com
VIEW GALLERY - 39 IMAGES

Our look at this Lian Li chassis is a culmination of lots of years of trial and error within a specific series of cases, and it seems again that now Lian Li is even crossing over to mainstream chassis features, but in their own way design a unique way of dealing with things. While we personally never had any of the PC-V1000 iterations, looking around online, it is easy to see a few iterations over the years, and a defined evolution in how things are addressed and handled. It used to be that Lian Li cases really did not pay attention to wire management, and a few cases before this broke that mold, but this is one of the most water cooling friendly, yet still sticking with everything Lian Li is well known for.

When we think Lian Li, we think three things when it comes to tower chassis design. Usually they are huge, there is never a shortage of aluminum, and to obtain one, there is usually a cost premium to all of this high-end material and craftsmanship. While the original PC-V1000 was so well liked, it was even cloned by Rocketfish to try and get that chassis to the masses at a reduced price, which is how much the masses wanted that case. The thing is, looking back now, that design definitely shows its age, and this time around with what they have for us to show you, there is no doubt many changes have been made, and all for the better as far as we are concerned.

The chassis that has us all here together today is the last in the lineup to come from Lian Li with their PV-V1000L Special Edition chassis. Along with a plaque on the back of the chassis designating so, the additions of easily compatible fan layouts to accommodate water cooling, grommets for wiring and external water cooling, tons of aluminum both natural and anodized black, all within a modular full-tower chassis that can even house E-ATX motherboards if needed. Previous to this design we have seen small steps forward from Lian Li, but in this PC-V1000L, we find almost a perfect blend of what users today need in a chassis.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 01 | TweakTown.com

The PC-V1000L comes in three flavors. There is /A that is natural aluminum, or silver. Then you also have the /B version which is black outside and natural inside, with the /WX version being black inside and out, and all versions also offer a windowed side panel option as well. This is designated as a full-tower as backed by the 551mm of height, 220mm of width, and 661mm of depth this chassis is dimensionally. When it comes to the composition of this build, there is aluminum, aluminum, more aluminum, a few bits of plastic, and steel is used mainly for screws to hold things into the chassis.

The chassis offers a single 5.25" bay, and is sent with a stealth cover in place so you don't have to break up the solid aluminum front with cheap looking plastic drives. Under that there are nine individual drive trays that are mounted directly to the motherboard tray, no cages or supports needed. Each tray will fit either a 3.5" drive or a 2.5" drive. For additional storage, next to the PSU, in the motherboard tray, there are key holes to allow either a pair of 2.5" drives, or a single 3.5" drive on its side. Along with the eight expansions slots in the back of the chassis, with all the talk of the motherboard tray, we may as well address the Micro-ATX, ATX, and E-ATX form factors that will all fit comfortably inside this chassis.

Cooling is handled with a trio of 120mm fans in the front of the chassis, blowing air from front to back. In the rear of the chassis is a matching fan used as an exhaust, and just in case, all fans are covered with fan grills. The top of the chassis offers room for a pair of either 120mm or 140mm fans, but none are placed there currently. The floor of the chassis doesn't actually hold any fans, but under the drive bays there is a bracket attached to the floor. This bracket will allow you to add an additional pair of 120mm fans there if you wish to do so. Along with all of the fan locations, concessions like fan spacing and offsets are used to be sure that the fan locations will all support many water cooling options as well.

If you want to consider these restrictions in length, feel free, but the reality is things are not restrictive at all in this chassis. We have 170mm of room for a tower CPU cooler, but with so many water cooling options, many won't go that route anyways. Video cards can be no longer than 380mm with the drive trays in place. With them removed, there is then 520mm before you start to rub the fan grills in the front of the chassis. Lastly, they do mention a 240mm length for the PSU, but that is only if you plan to use the bracket for additional fans, without it screwed to the floor, the entire floor opens right up to house whatever you want.

Locating this chassis was a bit challenging, outside of Amazon that is. Funny thing about that though is that wherever we looked, once shipping and applicable taxes are applied, all of the other locations come in higher in price than the $338.99 plus $26.99 it takes to ship this chassis. Other listing apart from that Amazon listing with Lian Li as the seller was closer to $400 and some went a bit beyond that. It is super hard to justify this cost if we were looking at the average chassis, but this isn't a simple refresh of a simple steel box, this uses a mix of aluminum finishes, it finally appears to be a chassis for the everyman, and with new tooling to build this version over the aging original, none of that comes for free.

Does that mean we will pull out near $400 to own this, we are still partial to another case for a daily driver, but with all the fans of the original PC-V1000, this PC-V1000L Special Edition chassis will warm their hearts likely leading to a nostalgia purchase. For those of you not familiar at all with what the heritage of this chassis is, if you have deep pockets, this could very well interest you to.

PRICING: You can find the Lian Li PC-V1000L PC-V1000LB Black Aluminum E-ATX Full Tower Computer Case for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

United States: The Lian Li PC-V1000L PC-V1000LB Black Aluminum E-ATX Full Tower Computer Case retails for $413 at Amazon.

Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at PLE Computer's website.

Packaging

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 02 | TweakTown.com

With a long trip from Taiwan to our lab, the packaging did not fare so well, but we can still get the idea. On what looks like brushed aluminium as the backdrop, there is a large image of the PC-V1000L with USB 3.0 and the other eight features listed down the right side.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 03 | TweakTown.com

We move to a white backdrop for this side of the box, where at the top they offer the model to be found inside, where we have the PC-V1000L B. The rest of the panel is used to show a very basic specifications chart, six times over in various languages.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 04 | TweakTown.com

This side of the packaging looks worse than the first, but we see that the panel is an identical copy of what we found on the front. We are really hoping at this point that the inner packaging is up to handling what this box looks like it went through.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 05 | TweakTown.com

Just like with the front and back panels, the sides are repeats of each other as well. At least a lot of that cost didn't go into the box, considering it usually hits the bin within a day of getting the case.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 06 | TweakTown.com

On the inside, we find the PC-V1000L wrapped in a plastic liner first to keep the aluminum from being scratched. Outside of that, we find pretty average thickness to the end caps used at the top and bottom. While the top layer fared much better, we are disheartened to see the bottom layer is completely busted at all four corners. Going to prove how well this method works though, as bad as the box looks, and as broken as that foam is, the chassis inside is in terrific condition without a mark to be found.

Lian Li PC-V1000L Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 07 | TweakTown.com

The front of the PC-V1000L is entirely made of mesh with tiny round holes, that is where the stealth bay cover and the front I/O panel isn't poking through. The front also curves to meet the top as the bottom where we first see that this chassis is on rollers.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 08 | TweakTown.com

The front I/O panel is topped with a large power button, followed below with the headphone and microphone 3.5mm jacks. The rest of the panel is taken up with four USB 3.0 ports, and Lian Li also offers a way to make one of them USB 2.0 for older or less equipped motherboards.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 09 | TweakTown.com

Looking from where the front rolls over and becomes the top, there is no transition, as it is all one sheet of aluminum. While the majority of the top is solid, there is a removable panel near the back to allow access to fan screws.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 10 | TweakTown.com

Not only is the cover a tight mesh, but there is a dust filter layer in here as well, and could impede on outgoing air flow. The plate under the filter offers holes for a pair of 120mm fans or a pair of 140mm fans, the choice is yours as to what to use.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 11 | TweakTown.com

Without a window to break this left side up at all, what you are left with is a very large expanse of black brushed aluminium to stare at. The panel is rounded at the corners to match the chassis design, and not only does the front have rollers, but the back offers a similar set as well.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 12 | TweakTown.com

Behind the PC-V1000L, we find the rear I/O and the exhaust fan next to it, which is also cut to fit an AIO externally. Below that, we find the eight expansion slots left natural in color, and room for the PSU at the bottom.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 13 | TweakTown.com

Zooming in much closer to the right side of the expansion slots, we find this small plaque designation this chassis, the Lian Li PC-V1000L to be a Special Edition chassis securely screwed into the aluminium.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 14 | TweakTown.com

One last thing before we move away from the back has to do with the rear rollers. So the chassis will not glide across an uneven floor, the large slide lever engages a lock on the rear set. To easily move it around, you slide it out as we have it here, and the rear axle frees up.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 15 | TweakTown.com

Matching the left side in its massiveness, the right side of the chassis offers a mirror image of the panel used on the other side. With the universal shape to both panels, they can also be interchangeable.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 16 | TweakTown.com

Under the chassis, we find a long dust filter running inside of rails. With the mechanism for the rear rollers blocking the back, this filter then slides out the front for cleaning.

Inside the PC-V1000L Special Edition

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 17 | TweakTown.com

To remove the side panels, start at the back and pull them off the side first at the back, then move to release it along the front. Using a system of pegs and sockets means that there are no screws to lose, and there is simple access and easy closure.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 18 | TweakTown.com

The first look inside gives you an idea of its size and just what can fit inside, but it can get better than this too. The wiring is tended to with wire ties and laying it on the floor, and we see a small box of hardware strapped to the motherboard tray.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 19 | TweakTown.com

At the top, there is a single optical bay cage with a tool-free mechanism on the side to make everything much simpler when it comes to installation. Also, this cage is screwed into place so it is removable all together, and also makes placing the drive behind the stealth cover much easier.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 20 | TweakTown.com

Behind the trio of 120mm fans with grills, we find a set of nine free standing drive trays. There are all mounted with screws behind the motherboard tray, but each drive tray is all set for either a 3.5" drive, a 2.5" drive, or removable if not used.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 21 | TweakTown.com

Looking from the inside, out through the top of the chassis, it is easier to see the fan mounting holes. Also, while it is set close to the motherboard tray, there is a good offset to the top of the motherboard to allow plenty of water cooling here.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 22 | TweakTown.com

While the tray will accept both Micro-ATX and E-ATX motherboards, the standoffs are placed for ATX. We also see around it that there is an 8-pin hole, a large access hole for CPU coolers, and a few locations for larger wires that have grommets as well.

Inside the PC-V1000L Continued

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 23 | TweakTown.com

At the front of the chassis on the floor, Lian Li offers this fan mounting bracket. Of course, you can also mount a radiator, and screw it back down, or remove it all together to make room for the pump and reservoir.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 24 | TweakTown.com

At the back, there are two rubber padded rails to support the PSU up off the floor of the chassis. We can also see in the motherboard tray that there are key holes, and we mentioned earlier, you can slide in either a 3.5" drive or a pair of 2.5" drives on the other side of this using supplied grommets.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 25 | TweakTown.com

The rear fans as well as the rest all are powered with a 3-pin connection and this one gets a grill too. The expansion slots are all held in place with thumbscrews, but access to them is off angled as the rear rail does not offer straight on clearance to them.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 26 | TweakTown.com

With room to fit a 3.5" drive here, thicker wiring will be no issue fitting. The rails at the left to support the HDD trays do lessen the room to go to the right side, and there is very little to nothing built in for wire tie points.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 27 | TweakTown.com

Wiring from the front I/O is all black. The shorter wires are for the LEDs and power switch, and are long enough to get them where they need to go. The HD Audio and USB 3.0 leads are super long, and will need to be dealt with when managing them cleanly in place.

Accessories and Documentation

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 28 | TweakTown.com

Three bags contain all the screws you will need to fill out this chassis. At top left, we have screws for the drives to lock into the motherboard tray, the PSU screws and motherboard screws. At top right, we have a bag of screws specifically to lock drives into the standard HDD trays near the front. The bag at the bottom offers screws for 2.5" drive installation and extra thumbscrews.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 29 | TweakTown.com

As far as additional wiring is concerned, Lian Li also sends some adapters and a motherboard post beep speaker. On the left is a pair of Molex adapter to power two of the four fans, and at the top is a native USB 3.0 to USB 2.0 adapter for one of the two USB 3.0 leads from the front I/O panel.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 30 | TweakTown.com

For hanging drives on the back of the motherboard tray, these eight grommets are sent to fill the holes securely. We are also given three zip strips, and two larger loops that will stick anywhere you need them and contain the wiring within them.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 31 | TweakTown.com

There are two versions of the manual, but both offer the same thing outside of the language it is printed in. Using black and white imagery and simple text descriptions they do walk you through the entire build and point out features along the way you may have missed. These will get even the most novice builder finished with their build with ease.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 32 | TweakTown.com

While at each tray, the motherboard tray is cut out to accept the wiring, but due to the way it mounts, the drives will not sit back far enough to allow for ninety degree SATA cables to be used easily, if at all. On the flip side of that coin, there is plenty of room for a straight SATA cable to hang behind the tray.

Case Build and Finished Product

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 33 | TweakTown.com

We removed the tray we did not need, and even with them in, they do not impede on the air flow much at all. Making this ATX build look tiny, there is plenty of room at the top, the front, and even on the floor for thick radiators and push/pull fan setups. Maybe even using a HDD tray lower for the pump.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 34 | TweakTown.com

As far as the dust shield goes, that went in just fine. As to the video card, we did find ourselves flexing the chassis to align the screws properly, and due to the curve at the bottom, the PSU isn't exactly flush, but is securely in place.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 35 | TweakTown.com

Of course, we could have gone and used the plastic loops Lian Li gave us, but since the 8-pin lead was traveling right across the middle, we just zip tied everything to that. We fit the 24-pin lead for show mostly to prove it fit without issue and it does. With such little wiring back here, it leaves the storage area wide open as well.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 36 | TweakTown.com

With this version of the PC-V1000L all closed up and ready for testing, the cleanliness of our build quickly becomes irrelevant. Of course, you may pop off the panel for a buddy or two to see, but day to day, nobody will ever see a mess inside either.

Lian Li PC-V1000L/B Special Edition Full-Tower Chassis Review 37 | TweakTown.com

Once powered up, noise levels do not exactly lead you to believe it is on. If not for the blue LED for the power indicator, until we got within a foot, the fans were not heard at all. In all honestly, the way both panels match, and since the I/O panel is on the right, this also makes a good left side of the desk choice as well.

Final Thoughts

As we cruise around the chassis, there are a lot of things we like. The resemblance to the original, while taking the design to that next level on the outside, streamlining everything to what the market wants now. On the inside, we saw the HDD trays, which are very cool in their design, and without all the other material to block off air flow with most HDD cages, inside of this chassis stays much cooler than others we have seen from Lian Li. We really like all of the water cooling readiness, where fans are spaced properly, and you aren't stuck to just using thin radiators and fans on one side only, there is room in here for just about anything you can dream up. The additional drive locations and amount of room behind the motherboard tray are also big pluses in our checklist as well.

While Lian Li is definitely on the right path with their newer ideas in case design, for almost everything we liked about this chassis, there is also an issue to match it. While the front offers the right spacing, and the cooling options are nice, there is an odd offset from the fans and the front panel that shows the natural aluminum and looks like someone made a math error in design. While the trays for the HDDs are cool and all, the front I/O wiring is directly over a few of them, and if the wiring is tied down, it will complicate things. The back of the chassis is not cut right to allow proper access to the expansion slots, but is still doable, just tough. While Lian Li leave all the room for wiring, the one place the design to run a lot of leads with nine storage racks, the system is supported in the back with rails the encroaches on the room for the wiring, where the biggest bulk would be, and offering nothing more than a couple of stick on wire management points at this price is almost laughable. As much as we liked what this chassis had to offer, the list of issues isn't short.

As much as we want to be able to say that this chassis is worth every penny of the investment, the list of oversights in a case of this price point makes it an almost impossible task. Is this a much better chassis than the original version? Hell yes, it is one of the better cases we have seen from Lian Li in the many years of looking at their products; indeed it is, no doubt about that. Just at near $400, you are really raising the expectations of the elitists who shop for such cases in the first place. Most of the people that would want this type of chassis also have a propensity to things being in their place and it all making sense.

Looking into this chassis and seeing the fans are offset from center and you get odd quarter moon shaped views of natural aluminum through the front may drive most of them nuts to see day to day. While exotic materials and tooling do have their inherent costs, and does explain a fair bit of the money it takes to get the PC-V1000L Special Edition chassis, we still cannot overlook all of the missed finer details with something noted as a "special edition".

PRICING: You can find the Lian Li PC-V1000L PC-V1000LB Black Aluminum E-ATX Full Tower Computer Case for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

United States: The Lian Li PC-V1000L PC-V1000LB Black Aluminum E-ATX Full Tower Computer Case retails for $413 at Amazon.

Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at PLE Computer's website.

Performance90%
Quality including Design and Build80%
General Features96%
Bundle and Packaging99%
Value for Money75%
Overall88%

The Bottom Line: For Lian Li, the PC-V1000L is a great evolution on the original, and a fine chassis for most who can afford it. For the discerning eye and near $400 pricing, it isn't long before wiring gets messy and issues start to point themselves out.

PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.

USUnited States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com

UKUnited Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.co.uk

AUAustralia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au

CACanada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca

DEDeutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de

After a year of gaming, Chad caught the OC bug. With overclocking comes the need for better cooling, and Chad has had many air and water setups. With a few years of abusing computer parts, he decided to take his chances and try to get a review job. As an avid overclocker, Chad is always looking for the next leg up in RAM, cooling, as well as peripherals.

Newsletter Subscription
We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

Related Tags

Newsletter Subscription
Latest News
View More News
Latest Reviews
View More Reviews
Latest Articles
View More Articles