There’s just something about building a PC in a compact case that takes up little to no space. Depending on your build, you can make a compact powerhouse that runs every game out there, and it won’t take up too much desk space. That being said, picking one of the best mini ITX cases to use could be tricky in some situations.
You will absolutely find plenty of options, but which one should you go for? Do you go for a budget pick that won’t set you back too much, or do you go for a more premium model? And of course, with so many things to note when it comes to cases, it’s easy to buy the wrong one.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the best mini ITX cases out there. This way, you’ll know which ones to go for, depending on your specific needs. Before that, though …
Unless you’ve got money to burn, you should be careful about which case you pick. Not all of them will perform equally, and there’s just too much variety out there.
Airflow or silence is the first question you should answer. Cases tend to either be closed off in order to reduce noise, or they’re more open, to increase airflow. You can’t get both. And while smaller builds require better airflow to function well due to the tighter internal layout, you’ll get great airflow and temperatures with all cases on the list below. That being said, if you appreciate silence, get one of the more closed models, as they’re definitely quieter.
Then, consider just how big your case can be. All the cases below fit a mini ITX build. But some of them won’t have room for massive GPUs like some of the best graphics cards are. Some will just fit one of those one-fan designs, which could be very limiting for gaming.
Last but not least, you can’t not consider the design. One of the key things about the best mini ITX cases is the fact that they look really nice, so the design should be on your list of priorities. Not only can you pick colors, but you can even pick and choose shapes. Do you want a rectangle or a cube? Maybe an open case, or one with a handle? There’s something for everyone, so let’s take a look at the cases.
NZXT is a household name in the case industry, and their minimalist cases have been copied left and right. The H210i is their mini ITX option, and it checks a lot of boxes for a modern, powerful rig to be built in it.
To begin with, on the outside, you’ve got a very minimal design with a white (or black) panel at the front, top and right side, and tempered glass on the left. It’s in line with pretty much any other NZXT case out there, and it does look pretty good.
On the inside, not only do you have room for a pretty big GPU, but you also have plenty of cable management room at the front and rear. NZXT thought this through very well. Add to it the included Smart Device V2 and RGB lighting, and you see why this is at the top of the best mini ITX cases.
There’s no going around it – InWin’s A1 Plus is an expensive case. But it just screams premium no matter how you look at it. Therefore, the high price will actually be justified for many.
Not only does it look very premium, but the tinted transparent stand has RGB lights in it to create a stunning effect not a lot of cases can achieve. The left side has a tempered glass side panel, which shows what’s inside your case. Oh, and you get a 10W Qi wireless charger at the top for your smartphone, too!
You also get a preinstalled PSU, which is a 650W 80+ gold unit, and it adds to the price but makes it an even better pick value-wise. Yes, it’s very tight inside, and you might struggle a bit with cable management. But once you’ve built everything up, it’s going to be a stunning build.
Not everyone who wants to build a compact PC wants to spend a lot of money on a case. If that sounds like you, Thermaltake’s Core V21 is a great choice. This is a case that gets you a bit of versatility in terms of internal layout and has some great airflow thanks to the mesh design all around.
On the outside, you’ve got mesh at the front, bottom and top, with tempered glass at one side to showcase your internals. The I/O is at the front of the left side, which is rather convenient, too.
Inside, however, you get a flexible layout that lets you set up the motherboard both vertically and horizontally. To add to this, you can have a lot of fans keeping things cool inside, too. Overall, a great pick as far as the best mini ITX cases go for users on a budget.
Corsair’s Crystal 280X is our most versatile option for a couple of reasons, but most notably, the ability to manage cables on the inside. This is a case that’s divided into chambers, with a separate one for your cables in order for them not to be visible.
You have three tempered glass panels on the case, which give you the ability to showcase your build’s internals. And as we mentioned, the back chamber keeps cables out of sight. You also have the ability to add up to six fans, as well as a 240mm at the front, top, or bottom of the case.
And one thing you wouldn’t expect from a case this small, you can fit up to two 3.5” drives and three 2.5” drives in the dedicated storage compartment. Yes, it might be expensive, but if you’re looking for flexibility, this is it.
The NR200 is a subtle looking case. With mesh panels at both sides and the top, you have plenty of room for airflow, and the front panel is a simple black panel with nothing but the logo. But if you don’t want to compromise with your components, this is the best mini ITX case for an SFF build that’s also pretty powerful.
Inside the NR200, you can fit up to a 330mm GPU, both horizontally and vertically. There’s also room for up to a 280mm radiator, and even a custom water cooling loop. As we said – best for a compact, no-compromise build.
Add to this the fact that you can front mount the PSU and get extra clearance on the motherboard, and this becomes a rather versatile choice, too. Oh, and did we mention you can disassemble the entire case with no tools? That’s neat, too.
Not everyone builds a PC for gaming – some people just want a good choice for media streaming in the living room. If that sounds like you, one of the best mini ITX cases is Fractal Design’s Node 202. It comes with a rather slim layout and elegant design, and while expensive, is worth every penny.
This is one of the smallest cases out there, with a volume of only 10.2 liters. However, it fits a mini ITX motherboard and an SFX power supply (an Integra 450W unit is included), and you can even fit a GPU that’s up to 310mm long.
The outside is pretty simple, but it does somewhat restrict airflow. You don’t want to pack components with a high TDP inside it, because it can’t handle too much heat. But if you only need an HTPC, this is one of the best mini ITX cases you can go for.
Not all of those LAN party fans want to go for a laptop – sometimes you want a desktop PC that’s compact, and you can grab and take along with you. If that’s the case, you should build it in Lian Li’s TU-150WX case. This is a compact aluminum case with a handle at the top, something that not many other cases have.
The entire case is built really well, using only durable materials. Well, except for the tempered glass side panel – you’ll have to be a bit more careful with that. The I/O is at the top, and you have a great port selection that includes a Type-C port as well.
On the inside, you can only fit an SFX or SFX-L power supply, and you’re limited (is that the right term?) to a 320mm GPU at most. But if these are two things you can work with, this is a great portable choice.
If your compact PC is one you want to showcase as much as possible, Thermaltake’s Core P1 is a great pick for you. This is an open case that has one big panel that holds the motherboard, and tempered glass on the other side, with pretty much nothing in between.
The case does look stunning, and while open, it gives you a fair amount of room for cable management in that back panel. The tempered glass is tinted and comes with a thickness of 5mm to add a bit of durability. We love the versatility of the Core P1, because not only can you mount it both horizontally and vertically, but you even have the option to wall mount it if you want, too!
If you don’t mind spending a bit extra on a PC case, you’ll be getting one of the best mini ITX cases that allow you to showcase your system.
Vertical cases weren’t too popular up until a few years ago, but today, they’re a great way to save some space in your setup. The Phanteks Evolv Shift Air is a great choice that gets you plenty of airflow, and easily removable panels all around.
The case comes with mesh fabric panels on both sides, which can be used to get some pretty great airflow for your components. You can add two 120mm AIOs if you want, and there’s plenty of room for larger GPUs.
The best thing about the Evolv Shift Air? You can place it both vertically and horizontally, depending on how much room you have. Oh, and it also comes with an integrated RGB controller, as well as quite a lot of room for cable management. A great choice if you like vertical cases.
When you look at Fractal Design’s Nano S case, you might think that it’s a cheap case due to the lack of “things” on the outside. It just looks boring, and there’s not much to it. Bland panels on all sides, and a bit of room for airflow at the front, and that’s it.
But look deeper, and you’ll see a case that has sound dampening all around and gives you the ability to build an incredibly silent compact PC in it. It also has surprisingly good airflow and a lot of room for cooling. You can even fit a custom water cooling loop if you want to.
Factor in things like excellent cable management room, compatibility with full-size components, and you’re looking at one of the best mini ITX cases that allow you to build a no-compromise system that’s as quiet as they come.
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