Case Build & Finished Product
With no optical drive bay, the front of the chassis does not change in its appearance fro0m beginning to end. With the ventilation, the way it is, what could dress the look of this chassis up a bit would be a pair of red LED fans.
Our GTX 970 we typically use is longer than OEM video cards, so we opted to go with a smaller card in this build. However, once we removed the HDD cage, we found plenty of room for everything we needed to install. While we did hide most of the SSD, we do like that we can use a fat radiator in the front and still have room for a pump and reservoir, if needed.
We did install a dust shield in the rear I/O and had no issues to discuss there. The video card is easy to install since it is done from the back of the case, and the PSU Riotoro sent to use with this chassis fits great.
Behind the motherboard tray; we were able to fit quite a bit in. Considering there is room for the thickness of a 3.5" drive here, there were no complications from the fat 24-pin wire or grouping the front I/O wires like we did. The panel slid right back into place without even a hint of resistance.
Stepping back to take it all in, we are pleased with the styling and appearance of the CR280. The side panel window is not so large that you see the PSU or the HDD cage, but even though it is slightly tinted, we can see our components inside no problem.
Once we powered up the system, we immediately noticed two things. First is the amount of noise coming from the fans, and the reading we took was 38 dB. The second thing we noticed is that under the bezel, there is a single red LED which adds a bit of a glow to the front of the chassis as light spills onto the desk.
PRICING: You can find the product discussed for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:
United States: The Riotoro CR280 Mini-ITX Tower Gaming Case, Window retails for $116.65 at Amazon.
United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at the Amazon UK website.