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As the years go by, the tempered glass PC cases are becoming more and more popular with the PC enthusiasts. The primary reason behind this overwhelming popularity is undoubtedly their look – they look incredibly attractive, adding a nice touch of flair to one’s technology needs.
They’re manufactured in a way that prevents the glass from breaking or overheating, and they can also reduce the noise which occurs when the computer is working. When they’re combined with quality materials such as metal or mesh, these kinds of cases are simply your best choice.
But, unfortunately, many people who’d like to own one aren’t exactly sure what to look for. There are, in fact, some things one needs to consider before purchasing his very first tempered glass PC chassis, and here are some of them:
Tempered Glass Windows
The primary feature of every TG PC chassis is, of course, its glass panel, allowing the user to easily see the components, the water-cooling system, and the cable management of his computer. With the right windows and lighting, you can turn your PC into a thing of beauty, and something that’s certain to attract the attention of everyone in the room.
When searching for such a model online, make sure to look for photos with the built-in systems. In that way, you will be able to make sure that the overall management of components fits your needs and preferences.
Some models will have tempered glass panels that show only a part of the computer – such as the CPU area, for example. If you would, say, want to show off your SLI graphics solution, you will, in turn, have to look for the cases with more extensive glass panels. Those wanting a minimalistic look will have to search for tempered glass PC cases that hide the cooling systems and the cables.
One of the primary considerations when purchasing a TG PC case is its build quality. A good model will have to protect all of your components (including the motherboard) and keep them in place. And in order to achieve this, the case will need to have quality assembly hinges and a sturdy frame.
Aluminum is probably the best choice of material – it weighs far less than steel and dissipates heat better. Of course, aluminum is not as durable as the steel is, but that shouldn’t be too big of a concern if your new PC will spend all of its time under or on the table.
Water-Cooling and Radiator Support
If you’re planning to use liquid cooling, one particular thing you’ll have to look for is the specific support for the radiator. If you’d like to water-cool just your processor, a single-width radiator (whether it’s 120 or 140mm) should do the trick. For those with more aggressive configurations and for those who are planning to apply liquid cooling to their graphics cards, we advise purchasing a tempered glass PC case with the support for the 240/280/360mm radiators.
The thing with the radiators is that they’re thicker than your usual fans, which means that the clearance between them and the other components is an extra factor to take into consideration. Don’t assume that the case you’re considering will work well with radiators just because it has mounting points for them – there also needs to be some room for them.
The RGB integration shouldn’t be too much of a concern – a vast number of modern TG PC cases come with it. When combined with the glass panels, the RGB lights can make a real light show out of your computer and add to its overall attractiveness and beauty.
If you, however, don’t have a big budget, you can opt for a model without RGB integration and merely add some LED strips later. They’re quite cheap and can be bought literally everywhere.
Smart PC-building means hiding all those components that you don’t want to be seen. In our opinion, the PSU is one of the most boring-looking parts, as well as that empty space that’s usually in front of it (in case your PSU is at the bottom of the chassis). Many tempered glass PC cases come with integrated power supply shrouds, so go for such a model if you’d like to keep that boxy thing out of sight.
One important thing to remember is that it’s, actually, quite easy to make the PSU shroud yourself – you’ll just have to bend a piece of metal (or plastic) at 90 degrees.
The cable management is far more critical in PCs with glass panels than in those without them, for an obvious reason. Look for the models that sport some cut-outs in their motherboard trays, as these cut-outs will let you easily route the cables through the rear of the chassis.
Budget models will usually just have big holes punched in the tray, while the more expensive cases come with rubber grommets that make things even tidier and more organized. Some other integrated cable management features to look for are the tie-off points and the wire covers.
Front IO Connections
For those with a big number of external devices, the presence of enough front IO connections is another crucial consideration. Even the most inexpensive TG PC cases come with things like USB Type-A 2.0 or 3.0 ports, RGB controllers, as well as headphone and microphone jacks.
The more expensive models come with the USB Type-C ports or even the HDMI ports, which are to become quite relevant with the increasing popularity of the VR headsets, such as the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive.
As you already know, keeping the computer clean is very important. A PC that’s clogged with things like the pet hair and the standard dust is a PC that throttles and runs hot, which has a very adverse effect on its performance.
Make sure to buy a TG PC case with proper dust filters, as they will keep the dust from getting in contact with your fans and prevent the above mentioned issues.
Sound Dampening Materials
As they’re using sound-dampening materials, the soundproof TG PC cases are able to keep the computer running very quietly. However, they also come with a pretty specific issue – the above mentioned materials also impede airflow, which leads to higher temperatures in such models. Look for the models that can optimize the airflow and stay silent at the same time.
When it comes to tempered glass cases, there are a great number of trusted brands on today’s market, so choosing a quality model shouldn’t be a hard task. However, each of these models comes with its specific features, and they can make quite a big difference in the results – try to find the middle between the extremes and you’ll end up with a model that will serve you for years.