Removing the side panels to gain access to the Lian Li PCX-2000’s interior is brilliantly simple, with just a single thumbscrew at the top of the case attached to a sliding rail that locks the side panel into the place. However, because the side panels are so tall, one screw at the top just doesn’t seem to be enough to properly secure the panels, and while they’re secure enough, they rattle to the touch due to the lack of fastening points mid way up the panel.
This is a shame, as we can’t imagine one extra thumbscrew would have spoiled the look or feel of the case, and would have easily solved the problem.
Inside the case we see the result of the revolutionary new high and thin case design, with the shallow case design resulting in a three tier compartmentalised layout with hard disk, main board and power supply/drive bay sections.
We’re also presented with the very impressive cooling setup Lian Li has included – the PC-X2000 has no less than four 140mm fans, with three acting as front intakes supplying cool air to the main board and hard disk compartments, and one acting as an exhaust for the main board. Due to space requirements, Lian Li has included dual ultra low speed 80mm to act as exhaust fans for the hard disk compartment (although strangely they’re not wired together) rather than an additional 140mm.
Click to enlarge
With all these fans in the case, we’re pretty concerned about the noise all that spinning plastic is going to create, especially as triple 120mm intake cases are notoriously windy. The last thing you want from an HTPC case is for it to be audible over the high definition movie you’re watching, so we’ll be carefully looking into noise level performance in our testing.
However, the fan layout should hopefully prove to be very effective. As we saw when we reviewed the Zalman GS1000, closer proximity of the exhaust fans to the high heat output components produced very impressive thermal performance, so hopefully with the 140mm intakes moved so much closer to the motherboard components than on conventional cases thanks to the shallow design and with their unimpeded airflow, we should see some solid thermal performance.