See our latest update to this buying guide: The Best Computer Cases

There's no point spending lots of money on PC hardware if you don't have a great case to put it in. But with so many options out there, how do you know what's best for you? There are plenty of factors to examine: looks, size, cost, features, thermals, etc. But we're here to make the process easier and narrow things down to a few excellent options for you to consider.

Our latest annual round up of the best cases covers various form factors, prices, and target audiences. We base our choices on expert and user reviews, buyers' comments, and our own impressions, separating the wheat from the chaff.

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Best Overall

Phanteks P600S Eclipse

Great | Differentiating Features
Front panels let users choose between performance or silent modes, all the advantages of the Enthoo Evolv X at a more affordable price, excellent airflow, versatile, great value, dual system support

Good | Most Have It
USB Type-C, supports E-ATX motherboards, roomy interior

Average | Competitors May Be Better
No RGB, design might be a bit plain for some

Phanteks has long been a favorite brand among PC builders, and for good reason. Its products regularly compete for 'case of the year' awards, and the P600S is no exception, combining high-performance and low-noise levels in an attractive case at a compelling price.

On the outside, users have the option of removing the sound-dampening front panels and revealing the fabric mesh filter, which allows for better airflow and improved performance. Alternatively, you can leave them in place for silent running. There's also a tempered glass magnetic side panel that's easy to open, and a neatly hidden I/O panel featuring USB Type-C and dual 3.0 ports

The interior of the P600S is based on Phanteks' Evolve X---a former winner of our Best Enthusiast category---meaning there's plenty of room inside this mid-tower, with support for up to E-ATX motherboards (up to 280mm wide) and dual-systems, along with plenty of cable routing features. It comes with a PSU shroud with a cutout to show off your power supply, sliding grommets, a fan hub, and three 140mm fans with room for three more.

Drive-wise, you get three tool-free SSD caddies at the back, and you can add the four included 3.5-inch drive enclosures at the bottom. While the P600S lacks some of the features found on the most expensive cases, including RGB, it's extremely versatile and comes with pretty much everything you need in a chassis.

A perfect choice for a variety of builds, its best element could be the price: at $159, Phanteks is offering a quality product far below the usual $200+ you'd expect to pay for a high-end option.

Three Amazing Alternatives

Lian Li 011 Dynamic XL

An update to the 011 Dynamic, this case looks stunning thanks to its removable front and side tempered glass and multiple RGB modes. The XL is more spacious than its predecessor, allowing for larger components while making it an excellent case to work inside. With its modular design, the Dynamic XL offers a huge amount of flexibility for different builds.

Highlights include the hot swappable bays, excellent cooling, capacity for up to ten storage drives, and support for vertical GPU mounting and E-ATX motherboards. There's also a Razer version so you can synchronize the lighting with the company's peripherals. The only problem might be the $200+ price tag.

Fractal Design Define 7

Looking a lot like the excellent Fractal Design Define R6, this feature-packed case is another versatile option that comes with a dual-layout interior. There's plenty of room for working inside, which is made easier by the tool-free panels. There's also a Nexus+ 2 PWM fan hub, great cable management, a dedicated fill port for refilling water loops, and a vented top panel that adds to its top thermal performance.

NZXT H710i

NZXT's latest smart case looks gorgeous and now comes with a faster microprocessor for its CAM software-powered Smart Device, which utilizes machine learning to find the perfect point between noise and performance for fans---it also controls the integrated RGB lighting.

The $170 H710i features four 120mm fans, USB Type-C, and support for vertically mounted GPUs. But its best feature could be the excellent cable routing, which uses built-in cable channels at the back to keep everything tidy.

Best for Enthusiasts

Cooler Master Cosmos C700M

Great | Differentiating Features
Modular design allows for multiple configurations, fantastic water- and air-cooling support, includes GPU riser cable and four 140mm fans, embedded ARGB

Good | Most Have It
USB Type-C, expandable, quiet

Average | Competitors May Be Better
Very expensive, not for newbies

Enthusiast cases usually have several elements in common: they're large, they're incredibly versatile, and they're expensive. Cooler Master's latest version of the Cosmos ticks all those boxes.

Following on from the excellent Cosmos II and Cosmos 700P, the 700M is huge, heavy, and gorgeous. It features addressable RGB in the form of two parallel strips that run from the top panel to the front panel, as well as ambient ARGB lighting on the bottom that reflects against the aluminum bars. You also get a tempered glass side panel with curved edges and a matte finish on the distinctive Cosmos handlebars.

The biggest draw for building enthusiasts is the C700M's versatility. Its modular layout allows builders to pick a standard, inverted, or a chimney-style motherboard tray (rotating the mobo 90 degrees).

The case also comes with a graphics card mounting bracket and riser cable, allowing users to mount the GPU vertically or horizontally in several positions, and you can even rotate the card up to 90 degrees to better show it off.

The C700M is perfect for those who love watercooling, with two included brackets that can each support 420mm radiators and mounting locations for water pumps and reservoirs. The cable management design, meanwhile, was inspired by server racks, with plastic strips organizing cables into channels, Velcro strips, and cable covers to keep everything looking clean.

With four pre-installed fans (up to nine are supported), ten drive bays, USB Type-C, and excellent thermal performance, the C700M is a great option for experienced builders. The only problem might be the price, which can range from $450 to $600.

A Great Alternative

BeQuiet Dark Base Pro 900 rev 2.

The successor to the excellent Dark Base Pro 900, the rev. 2 comes with all the original's features, including the modular interior, Qi wireless charging, capacity for a huge number of drives, and fantastic water-cooling support. The new version features a USB 3.1 Type-C gen2, a fan controller that supports 8 PWM fans, new plastic drive slot covers, and improved Silent Wings fans. At $269, it's a lot cheaper than many enthusiast-class rivals.

Just As Good

Corsair Obsidian 1000D

If size matters, then Corsair's Obsidian 1000D really, really matters. Thirty percent bigger than the gargantuan 900D, this monster can hold two systems, 8 fans, four 480mm radiators, and a family sedan (possibly). It's also over $500.

Phanteks Enthoo Elite

Does money have little meaning to you? Do you think there's no such thing as a case being TOO expensive? Then Phanteks' Enthoo Elite is for you. Priced at a jaw-dropping $900, this 30-inch tall, two-foot wide beast of a rig comes with all the brackets and mounts (including a GPU one) you'd expect in something this expensive. There's dual system support, six SSD and 13 HDD mounts, and it's another enthusiast case that's perfect for extreme water cooling setups and custom loops.

Phanteks Evolv X

A much cheaper option from Phanteks than the Enthoo Elite, this successor to the excellent Evolv ATX supports not only E-ATX, ATX, Micro-ATX, and Mini-ITX motherboards, but also dual-systems, thanks to the optional ITX upgrade kit---though this will also require Phantek's Revolt X PSU. Cable management is top quality, the fan hub design is great, and it can hold a massive 19 drives. Last year's winner of this category is now available for under $200.

Best Mini-ITX Case

Lian Li TU150 Mini ITX

Great | Differentiating Features
Handle is a piece of design, can fit larger air coolers and GPUs

Good | Most Have It
USB Type-C

Average | Competitors May Be Better
SFX/SFX-L power supplies only, no bottom dust filters

It's no longer the rule that powerful components equal massive sizes. With some PC owners preferring a console-sized case, there are some very attractive Mini-ITX options available, and one of the best is the Lian Li TU150.

Like all of Lian Li's cases, the TU150 oozes style, especially the brushed Aluminum version. There's a tempered glass side panel with a blacked-out section that hides the PSU, four rubber-tipped feet that provide clearance airflow, and the case's highlight: a fully retractable handle in the roof that blends into the chassis when in the down position.

The TU150 is slightly larger than some other ITX cases, meaning it can fit larger components, though its form-factor is still recognizable. Connectivity demands, meanwhile, are met with the USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port and dual USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A connectors.

Accessing Lian Li's case is simple, thanks to the pin-based, push-to-lock panel mechanism that makes stripping it down a quick and simple affair. On the inside, there's support for either two SSDs or a single SSD and HDD, along with four fans. You can even stick a 120mm radiator at the back. Cable management, often an issue in ITX cases, is excellent as you can route cables behind the motherboard tray and through the roof section.

The only issue some might have with this case is that it doesn't support ATX power supplies, only SFX/SFX-L, but that does mean there's more interior space. Apart from that, the TU150 is a great choice for those wanting a mini-ITX with enough room for sizable components (air coolers up to 165 mm). It's also under $120, which is excellent value for money.

Worthy Alternatives

NZXT H210i

An update of the NZXT H200i---our previous 'Best mini-ITX case' winner---the H210i features everything that made its predecessor so good, along with a few upgrades. Buyers get the latest Smart Device V2 for controlling the RGB lighting and fans, and we finally get a USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port. There's plenty of room for liquid cooling setups, great thermal performance, and plenty of cable management features. You can grab this attractive case for under $100.

Best Micro-ATX Case

NZXT H400i

Great | Differentiating Features
Comes with integrated fan and RGB controller. Great build quality combined with stunning looks. Roomy, lots of cooling options for an mATX case

Good | Most Have It
Good thermals and cable management, competitive price

Average | Competitors May Be Better
Lacks USB Type-C

NZXT's H400i follows the same design language found in its other H-series cases; the cable bar, PSU shroud, tempered glass, removable air filters, and tempered glass are all housed in the solid, all-steel chassis.

It might be a compact case, but the H400i is a great choice for those wanting to pack a lot of cooling hardware into an mATX. It can hold two fans in the front and roof along with one 120mm fan in the rear. You can also pack a 280mm radiator in the front with a 120mm rad in the rear. Custom loops are possible, too, thanks to the roomy interior.

Like the other H-series cases, the H400i features NZXT's smart device that's powered by its CAM software. This lets you control the built-in RGB lighting and fans, while its Adaptive Noise Reduction uses machine learning to optimize acoustics by finding the perfect settings.

Cable management is another strong area, with plenty of channels and Velcro strips to keep everything clean. There's support for four 2.5-inch drives and one 3.5-inch, and it comes with two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports---no Type-C, sadly. Add to all this a thermal performance that's several degrees cooler than similar cases, and the NZXT H400i with its competitive $149 price stands out in the mATX category.


Corsair Crystal 280X RGB

Based on its Air240, Corsair's Crystal cube design boast three tempered glass panels and a dual-chamber interior, meaning you can hide the PSU, storage drives and all the cables in the second portion. The RGB variant features two fans with rainbow lighting, and there's support for radiators up to 280mm in length. Versatile, roomy, quiet, and it looks great.

Elsewhere, the Phanteks Enthoo EVOLV mATX TG (below) remains an excellent option, especially for watercooling setups, as does the Bitfenix Phenom mATX, which features space for ten hard drives and five motherboard expansion slots.

Best Case Under $100

Lian Li LanCool II

Great | Differentiating Features
Fantastic case for under $100, includes three fans, great cooling support, rear covers keep things tidy

Good | Most Have It
RGB lighting, tempered glass

Average | Competitors May Be Better
Some features require the optional extras

One might expect a lot of compromises in a case under $100, but Lian Li's Lancool II proves that there are some excellent options at this price range. You still get features that are standard in more expensive products, such as hinged and magnetically secured tempered glass panels on both sides, RGB lighting, and a PSU shroud, making this a value-for-money winner.

The case comes with two USB 3.0 ports, and there's even a Type-C, but that requires an optional $12 cable that would push the price above $100. Still, it's a good price for what you get.

The interior boasts a tool-free sliding drive cage that can be made hot-swappable if you buy the optional HDD mount. The PSU shroud is easily accessible from either side, and as there are two glass panels, Lian Li has added a series of cable covers on the rear to give it a clean look---only the two removable SSD drive caddies are on display.

Cooling support is great for a case of this size, with a removable radiator bracket and removable panel on the PSU cover that allows the installation of rad and fan combinations up to 110mm thick. There's also space to mount a 240mm radiator at the top, and it comes with three 120mm fans as standard.

Finding a sub-$100 case with this many features is difficult, if not impossible. And those willing to spend a little more on the optional extras can get even more out of this top-quality chassis.

Editor's note: As of writing, several cases are out of stock or selling for a higher price tag than usual. This may be due to higher than usual demand and slower supply due to the COVID crisis. Throughout the article we're quoting MSRP/regular street prices, which we hope will be effective in a short time.


Phanteks Eclipse P400A (Digital)

Phanteks' case puts a focus on airflow with a full-mesh front panel in front of its three RGB fans and an integrated 3-speed fan controller. The company certainly achieved its aim---the case was Gamers Nexus' Best Overall (thermals and design) winner last year. It also comes with integrated digital RGB lighting, tempered glass, plenty of velcro straps for cable management, and four drive bays with space for four more using the optional bracket. And all for around $90.

Fractal Design Meshify-C

Like the Phanteks P400A, this case uses a full mesh front panel to improve airflow. It's smaller than many ATX cases, so would suit someone looking for a case that doesn't dominate the desk. With its tempered glass panel, solid build, two pre-installed fans, sound dampening features, and space for five drives, there's plenty here to satisfy builders. You can grab this case for as low as $89, making it a bargain buy.

Corsair Carbide 275R

If you're after a clean, stylish, minimalist case under $100, take a look at Corsair's Carbide 275R. It's probably the best budget case you can buy in terms of cooling features-both water and air. There's support for a 360mm radiator at the front, a 240mm cooler in the roof, a 120mm rad in the rear, and six 120mm fans. You also get a tempered glass window and excellent cable routing inside the spacious case, making this a great option for PC-builders of all skill levels.

Image credit: Nag (Cooler Master C700M), TechRadar (Enthoo Elite), Tom's Hardware (Corsair Crystal 280X), MastersOfTech / PCpartpicker (Lian Li Lancool II)