Corsair Carbide Spec-05 case melds style and affordability

Despite my gauche and unstylish taste, I don't like to spend a lot of money on a case. In fact, I usually end up building PCs in boring black boxes. It's a habit from my younger years when I needed to pour every penny into performance-enhancing parts. These days, though, you don't have to pay out the nose to get a nice-looking chassis. Check out Corsair's latest, the Carbide Series Spec-05. This is an ATX mid-tower case with a stylish front fascia, a full-size acrylic side window, and a reasonable price.

Corsair has produced some Spec-series cases in the past with rather aggressive aesthetics. In comparison, the Spec-05 is downright quiet. Besides having a simple and stylish shape, the Spec-05 is also practical. It'll take full-sized ATX motherboards, and while it skips the power supply shroud commonly found in current cases, it uses a now-common layout with the PSU at the bottom. You get three spots for 3.5″ disks and two spaces for 2.5″ drives.

For a case of its size, the Spec-05 can take a fair few fans. You can mount two 120-mm fans in the top and three in the front. Either location can also take a pair of 140-mm spinners. The front of the case can take a 240-mm liquid-cooling radiator, and a 120-mm fan or radiator can go in the back. The Spec-05 comes from the factory fitted with a single 120-mm fan with red LED lighting. Corsair notes that you'll have to remove the 3.5″ drive cage to use a third 120-mm fan, a second 140-mm fan, or a 240-mm radiator in the front of the case.

Unlike a lot of low-end cases, the Spec-05 offers solid allotment of cable routing holes in the backplate. You also get removable and reusable filters on the intake grilles. Folks building new machines can pick up Corsair's Carbide Spec-05 for just $50 at Newegg.

Comments closed
    • Thresher
    • 2 years ago

    Corsair cases get uglier and uglier.

    Their early designs were models of the “less is more” school. Lately, it’s been more of the “garish and ridiculous” school.

    I guess they’re going where the market is and I suspect these cases aren’t really designed for Western tastes anymore. The OEM is in Taiwan and China and cases like these sell very well over there. I am surprised they haven’t made a rose gold version, since that’s another thing that sells very well in the East.

    I prefer the old subdued and classy monoliths to these neon monstrosities.

      • Growler
      • 2 years ago

      Compared to a lot of other recent offerings, this [i<]is[/i<] subdued. It doesn't have a ton of weird bulges or unnecessary lights. If it wasn't for that curve on the front, it would almost be boring. I get what you're saying, though. Sometimes a "boring" case is the perfect case. I want something to put my parts in, not an eyesore.

    • Takeshi7
    • 2 years ago

    And here I am just waiting for them to update the 450D with tempered glass and a PSU shroud (and maybe a USB type-C port).

    That’s all I want from Corsair: an evolutionary upgrade to the 450D

    • Chrispy_
    • 2 years ago

    The insides of the Spec-05 are based on the ancient Carbide 100R frame and they are neither high-quality nor nice to look at.

    I can’t help but feel that a smaller, acrylic window in a steel panel would look much better – hiding all the ugly rolled steel, exposed and riveted tabs where different panels meet, and of course the awkward rectangular shapes stamped into the flimsy steel to improve its rigidity.

    All of these things are acceptable in a low-budget case, they’re just NOT the sort of thing you’d want to show off in a full-coverage window. Let’s face it, if you can’t afford to spend an extra $25 on a higher-end case, you also can’t afford to colour-match your components, splurge on RGBLED everything, or buy a modular PSU with fully-sleeved cables. None of the low-cost alternatives would matter if the window was only big enough to show just the motherboard.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 2 years ago

    I just hate seeing a single USB 3.0 and a single 2.0 port up front. Instead of spending the money to run a second line for the USB 2.0 port, why not just toss in a header that converts the 3.0 ports to USB 2.0 for people with what is surely an ancient motherboard at this point to not have an internal USB 3.0 header?

    That’s a serious nitpick, though. This looks like a nice and compact case for the price.

    • uni-mitation
    • 2 years ago

    Practical with an air of style & frugality, just like how i like my ladies.


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