This week's release roundup is all about cases and cooling. We have announcements from BitFenix, Lian Li, NZXT, Raidmax, and Scythe.
- BitFenix announces Shinobi/Colossus Window USB 3.0 upgrades. No new cases here, just upgrades to BitFenix's existing Shinobi, Shinobi Windows, and Colossus Window. From now on, all three of those enclosures will feature two USB 3.0 ports in addition to a pair of USB 2.0 ports. You can check out our review of the Shinobi Window here.
- Lian Li expands data storage chassis with the PC-Q12 & PC-Q18. Both of these Lian Li cases are intended as Mini-ITX storage hubs, but they're quite different, physically speaking. The PC-Q12 measures only 3.5" x 14.4" x 8.2", lacks room for a discrete graphics card, and is cooled by a single 80-mm fan. It can, however, accommodate four 2.5" hard drives, and Lian Li ships it with a 300W 80 Plus-certified power supply. Meanwhile, the PC-Q18 is a larger 7.8" x 11.4" x 14.4" enclosure with a more conventional cube-shaped design. It has a 5.25" front optical drive bay, four hot-swappable 3.5" bays, and a bottom bay that can hold either two 3.5" drives or three 2.5" drives. It also sports two 140-mm fans and, unlike its little brother, has room for discrete graphics. Both cases have the same price tag: $159.
- NZXT announces Phantom 410 Special Edition. We covered the original Phantom 410 in one of our earlier roundups, so you might already be familiar with it. NZXT says it has whipped up four new variants of the enclosure with different paint jobs: "Black with Orange Trim, Black with White Trim, White with Blue Trim, and a surprise Gunmetal black edition with a gunmetal interior and exterior matte finish." See the photo below. All four new models should be available this month for $89.99.
- Raidmax announces new chassis incorporating luxurious car themes – Raptor. No, I'm not making up the "luxurious car themes" part. The Raidmax Raptor may only have a passing resemblance to a sports car, but for $99.99, it doesn't sound like too bad a deal. It has a modular hard-drive cage, fan speed and LED fan controls on the front panel, "pre-routed cable management," and room for graphics cards as long as 16.9" (if you can find any that size). I'm not too crazy about those wedge-like things at the front, though.
- Scythe Grand Kama Cross goes Rev. B. Scythe says its Grand Kama Cross cooler has gained support for Intel's LGA2011 socket, a change that apparently warranted the "Rev. B" label. (The firm says the new cooler "comes with reliable quality and performance for the same price as prior version," but I'm not too sure what that means.) In any case, the cooler has the same v-shaped fin arrangement and 140-mm PWM fan as the original, and it supports most sockets in addition to LGA2011. The original model seems to sell for just under $40, so I'd expect the Rev. B to go for about the same.
That PC-Q12 enclosure does look rather handsome. I think it'd make an elegant small-form-factor PC, provided the user doesn't mind being stuck with integrated graphics... or spending $159 for a tiny case and matching PSU.