Introduction, Specifications and Pricing
There are many companies out there trying to innovate when it comes to case designs, but at the same time, it is few and far between that we get something that doesn't resemble the usual "box" when it is finished. In the past few years, things have really stepped up in the interior game, and things like ODD bay removal, water cooling readiness, wire management already being done, the list really goes on and on here, but it seems that only a select few companies aren't afraid to tinker around with the exterior layout, but yet some are, and one of those happens to be NZXT.
While some may argue that plastic components on a steel square chassis may be the same thing, the Phantom series of cases proved one thing: many users really like the idea of curves and body lines when it comes to chassis design. Not to say that others are not doing things similarly to this, but there is no denying that the Phantom was the first to take the market by storm and sell really well. Keeping in a similar trend, but this time going into the Concepts series rather than the Phantom series, NZXT has put a new spin on what chassis exteriors should look like.
Now don't get your heart set on looking at a new mid-tower Phantom, as it only takes some of the design aspects on the exterior, yet is able to still be a product that will stand on its own and be easily recognized as a one off, not part of another group. However, when it comes to the interior, we find things inside that are part of other designs we have seen in the past, and at the same time meeting, if not exceeding, all of the trendy modifications users want. If you are into unique looks, and have no room for compromises with no room or need for a full-tower chassis, read on.
The Noctis 450 is available in a matte black finish as well as a glossy white option, and both variations sport zero 5.25" bays as not to detract from the exterior design, but still offer room for six 3.5" or 2.5" drives, and additional pair of brackets specific to 2.5" drives only. Cooling this chassis we are given a trio of 120mm FN V2 fans that are preinstalled, but there is also room for a pair of 140mm fans as an optional cooling solution. The top of this design will allow for the same layout with the same 120mm and 140mm fan placements the front offers. Then the rear of the chassis offers the last option for cooling with a 140mm fan pre-installed from the factory, and if you jump further down the chart, you will find the specifications for each fan.
To help to keep the interior of the chassis clean, there is a magnetic dust filter behind the bezel, and to keep the PSU interior and fan clean, there is also a filter under the chassis. Next, we see the clearances on the Noctis, and we see that the GPUs are listed first. There is 294mm of room with the HDD trays in the chassis and will fit most cards on the market. However, if you remove the HDD trays, the room vastly increases to 406.2mm at that point. There is also room for 185mm of CPU cooler height on top of the motherboard, and we are even shown that the minimum spacing for wiring is 17.7mm in some areas, while there is up to 32.5mm in others. Although, since this design offers a PSU cover at the bottom, it offers a huge cavity to bundle any excess wiring, and leaves unlimited room for long power supplies.
About midway on the chart we see that this chassis is 544mm in depth, it stands 567mm in height, and is 220mm in width while weighing in at 9.5kg. The frame and the side panels of the chassis are made of steel, but the use of ABS plastic on the top and front of this chassis is what gives it all of the design flair we think you will appreciate. Inside of the chassis, you can fit a Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, or ATX motherboard, and at the back there are seven expansion slots to fill with needed GPUs and so on. We see they mentioned external electronic which of course covers the pair of 3.5mm jack in the front I/O panel. We also see though, with this design, at the rear of the chassis is a button for the lighting system that comes in this design. That's right, built-in LED lighting. That leaves us with just the three rows at the bottom of the chart where we find out the front I/O also offers a pair of USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports, and that the Noctis 450 comes with a two-year warranty.
Looking around for pricing and availability, the big name e-tailers have listings, so obtaining one should be pretty easy at this point. We cross checked pricing as well to see if the black on black version runs the same as the white on black version of the Noctis 450, and whichever you like more will cost you the exact same. Now, you can go directly to the NZXT store and buy this chassis for the MSRP of $139.99, and you can locate it at Newegg for the same price, but shipping listed there is another $13.99. At this time it is then our advice to opt for the third choice. Venture over to Amazon.com where the chassis is sold with NZXT listed as the seller, but the chassis can be had there for $134.99 and comes with free shipping.
While we do still think that $99 is the sweet spot for a fully loaded mid-tower chassis, we also appreciate that new case designs take new tooling, not to mention the design phase with engineering time and model making. So while the price may off put some, we can see why there is an increase in cost, and we feel that NZXT stopped at nothing to pack the most bang for the buck in this design as they could.
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