BitFenix Shinobi

At $60 ($70 with a window), the smaller, lighter and less gaudy BitFenix Shinobi is bound to attract a broader audience. Compared to the Colossus, the mid-tower Shinobi is a featherweight pushing 14.8lb (6.75kg) and measuring only 490mm long, 460mm tall and 205mm wide.

Although the Shinobi is aimed at gamers, we can't see why the average system builder wouldn't appreciate its subtle styling. The façade features three external 5.25" bays which are accompanied by a brushed aluminum BitFenix logo and two tin parallel strips of mesh.

The top of the case reveals an I/O panel with four USB 2.0 ports, a pair of audio jacks and the power/reset buttons. Behind that is a large mesh grill to dismiss hot air from the case. Since we have the windowless version, both the left and right doors are completely bare.

As we mentioned, the Shinobi can house three 5.25" devices and one of these bays comes loaded with a 2.5" adapter, which could prove handy if your SSD doesn't ship with a conversion bracket. There are also eight 3.5" bays, offering a great deal of space for storage expansion.

In terms of cooling, the Shinobi comes with just a single rear mounted 120mm fan, which is rather limited considering most enthusiast cases in this price range ship with at least two fans: one intake and one exhaust. In fact, this can be found in various sub-$50 chassis.

If you're willing to part with the cash, a decent 120mm blower only runs about $10, but it's an inconvenience nonetheless. You can install five additional fans: two front-mounted 120mm intake fans, two top-mounted 140mm or 120mm fans, and a bottom-mounted 120mm fan.