The Bottom Line
Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
It's been years since I have found myself writing a chassis review, but there is no form factor, in my mind, better than ITX. Of course, those ATX and Extended ATX boards will always have more features, but vendors are increasingly pushing the bar forward on ITX motherboard design.
Over the last few years, I've found myself falling into the niche ITX chassis market, building in cases like the NCase M1, Dan A4, and Louqe Ghost, all fantastic chassis but always hard to find with a price that will test how committed you are to the build.
Earlier this year, Cooler Master decided to flip the market on its head and release the NR200, the latest chassis in the Masterbox lineup. This solution, as you already know, is an ITX chassis offered in two colorways; black and white. An additional SKU was released separately as well, offering a tempered glass side panel, the NR200p.
Running through the specifications, the NR200 offers a full steel frame in either black or white, dimensions of the chassis come in at 360x185x275 with an internal volume around 18 Liters.
Motherboard form factors supported include; Mini DTX, Mini-ITX with a max size of 244x226mm. Expansion includes the ability to support a triple slot GPU and two 3.5" drives and three 2.5" drives. Front I/O is reserved for 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 connection using Type-A and combination audio in/out jack in 3.5mm.
Preinstalled fans include a rear-mounted 92mm SickleFlow with an operating range of 650 to 2300 RPM. The top-mounted fan, again a Sickle Flow design at 120mm has a similar range of 650-1800 RPM. Additional fan capacity includes two by 120mm at the top of the chassis, one by 92mm at the rear, and two by 120mm for the bottom, although you will likely want slim fans to clear the GPU. Side panel fan support includes both 120 and 140mm in a x2 configuration.
PSU support includes mounts for both SFX and SFX-L, and the chassis includes dust filters all around.
Currently, the Cooler Master NR200 carries an MSRP of $89.99 with a two-year warranty.
Packaging, Accessories and The Chassis
Packaging and Accessories
The NR200 came in an appropriate box, sketeched outline of the chassis on the box.
The back goes into more detail about the chassis along with a breakout image to the right.
On the left side, you will find the specifications.
Unboxing, the NR200 is protected by dense white foam and wrapped in a plastic bag.
Included with the chassis is a manual and brown box with accessories.
Inside that brown box, we find zip ties, fan grills, fan power splitter, and extra screws to set up the vertical GPU mount.
With our first look at the case outside of the packaging, we have quite a small box; full ventilation on five sides, the front is solid.
The front panel is the thickest panel and by far the heaviest on the chassis. To the back, we have power at the top left with I/O right below. To the right, you can mount a 92mm fan or punch out the area for vertical GPU mounting. Along the bottom, we have the three slot configuration for your GPU.
The bottom of the chassis is covered by a dust filter allowing two 120mm fans to be installed. Up top, we have the front I/O to the left consisting of dual USB ports and 3.5mm jack. The remainder of the panel is a finer mesh with support for two 120mm fans.
Removing all panels from the factory, the NR200 offers a 120/140 radiator mount for the left side opening.
On the backside of the motherboard tray, you will find a full cutout for accessing the cooler retention area and m.2 slots found on many ITX boards. Above, we have the power cord running inside to the power supply tray to the left.
The front of the chassis allows you to mount 2.5" SSDs along with water cooling pump with several patterns drilled out.
The PSU tray has plenty of room for SFX and SFX-L power supplies. On the side, we have retention slots for tying up the cables with zip ties.
You have a few options for mounting the PSU in your NR200. If you have a shorter GPU, you can go with this front mount offering more room around the motherboard area.
The other method is mounted next to the motherboard, as seen above in one of two slots notched on the back tray.
The Build and Final Thoughts
Cooler Master sent over its all-new MasterLiquid ML280 Mirror, a dual 140mm design with third-gen pump for this build.
For our build, I'm using the ASRock B550 Phantom Gaming that we will have in its own review coming up soon. I chose the PSU to be placed next to the motherboard so our three-slot GPU will fit later on. From this point, it was just all about keeping the power cables as tight as possible next to the PSU tray and routing the front panel connections behind it.
The front panel cutout on the NR200 allows for some amazing clearance for those of you installing three slots beasts like the RTX 2070 Super from MSI. You can see in this image the cutout on the back panel allowing for vertical GPU mounting.
At this point, our card is in, and its time to get our CPU installed, Ryzen 5 3600X, and the cooling.
Looking at the backside, you can see I ran the HD audio along the bottom rail of the motherboard tray, while power is wrapped up and tied back along the top.
I mounted the MasterLiquid to the side panel tray with four screws and placed it into the chassis.
You can see it's a pretty tight fit from this angle, but I could get the tubing moved up and run the fan cables down the opposite side.
Last, we have the top panel, which includes the ability to install two 120mm fans toolless. The brackets are included in the accessories box, with one fan coming premounted.
The NR200 was a great case to build in, but it's worthy to note you will want to plan everything out and make sure everything you chose for your build is compatible before you start. Build quality is pretty good, although I will say the side panels are a bit flimsy as is the top, and the plastic retainers that hold the side panels were popping out of place every so often, especially if you are in and out of the chassis a lot.
Overall, the NR200 is a fantastic solution for those wanting to build the ITX of their dreams without the often high price tag of niche chassis with similar designs.
What We Like
Value: At $89.99, this chassis does everything those niche models can do at half the cost.
Versatility: From the factory, the NR200 supports multiple configurations for the PSU and GPU, allowing consumers to customize their build.
Water Cooling: The NR200 offers several options for mounting AIO Water cooling or full custom setups with pre-drilled mounts for pumps and radiators.
What Needs Work
Thicker Panels I understand the NR200 is built to be cost-effective, but the panels are very thin and easy to bend if you set them down in the wrong place.
Fans: You will likely want to add fans to your purchase, as the included 120mm SickleFlow that CM has mounted to the top, doubles as a rattle, taking away from the silent operation of your build.
The NR200 was a pleasant experience to build in, offering several configurations and plenty of options for additional storage and water cooling!
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