Lian Li PC-A04 Features
With both hard drive racks installed, you get about 22.5cm/8.9in to accommodate a graphics card, not including space for PCI-E power cables. As such, you can still squeeze seven 3.5in hard drives into the case, as well as an 8in GeForce GTX 460, but not the more desirable 9in GeForce GTX 560 Ti, unless someone develops a shorter, custom PCB.
One 120mm fan comes fitted in the roof, but the rear 80mm fan slot remains empty
Still, we wouldn't want to pack the case with a powerful GPU and seven hard drives anyway, because there's no side panel cooling fan. In fact, you don't even have the option to fit one, but there's thankfully still a 120mm fan in the roof, as well as space for an 80mm fan in the back.
The tool-less 5.25in drive clips work well and are even removable if necessary. The PSU-mount is found in the base, and comes complete with anti-vibration foam and a fan filter underneath
Instead of a side panel fan, the PC-A04 instead includes two 120mm fans in the front. With a high-end (and longer) graphics card these fans provide Tyr-style
direct cooling akin to a side-panel fan. However, with drives fitted in front of the fans, the airflow is not just considerably hindered, but also pre-warmed.
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Meanwhile, the PSU sits in the base above a stamped-out grille that lets in the air from underneath. You'll be pleased to know that there's a fan filter included, but unclipping it requires you to tilt the case, and you can't simply slide it out the back as you would with other cases. The front fans feature the same kind of filters, and helpfully the front panel can be removed with just a simple tug.
The PSU fan grille has a filter, but unclipping it requires you to tilt the case
Behind this panel, you'll also find a sneaky space for Lian Li's own simple fan controller. We say 'space' because Lian Li didn't actually include it, which is pretty stingy considering it's a $1 switch, and you're already paying a premium for an aluminium case in the first place.
Finally, the front panel connectors can be found on the roof, including one USB 2, one USB 3 and one eSATA port, as well as 3.5mm headphone and microphone jacks, plus the usual Power and Reset switches. The USB 3 port uses the motherboard rear I/O ports rather than the newer internal header, but this could be the favoured choice of case manufacturers for a while, given the comparatively low number of motherboards featuring a USB 3 header.