Best Mini-ITX Cases

Last Updated on by Nicholas Frost

If you’re building a new rig, a mini-ITX case will give you all the functionality you need without a large footprint. You’ll need to ensure you’ve got the room for your chosen components, have proper ventilation and your required features, but it’s doable. If done correctly, you can have a PC that performs just as well as a bigger build but in a compact and stylish package. It makes it easy to transport if needed for LAN parties and generally takes up less space. You may not have a ton of expansion options and will need to assess each component’s relevance thoroughly. To help you out we’ve rated and reviewed the top ten mini-ITX cases on the market. It takes the guesswork out and saves you hours of online browsing.

BEST MINI-ITX CASES

Best Mini-ITX Cases – Reviews

There are a ton of Mini-ITX cases on the market, but only a handful that we’d consider worthy of making our top ten. On this list, you will find a case that will tick all your boxes. We’ve based our choices on the factors listed above, making a well-rounded list of the best Mini-ITX cases you can get.

1. BitFenix Prodigy

The BitFenix Prodigy has a unique and attractive design. It resembles an ATX tower but is much more compact. It’s composed of a combination of steel and plastic and offers a maximized use of the space provided.

For those who want the ability to expand their rig as they go, the BitFenix Prodigy can be hugely customized. It’s a larger size for a Mini-ITX, which means it will be able to house any components you need it to. It has the space for up to five 3.5” hard disks. Or if you want to go solid-state, it can fit 2.5” drives. There is also space for a 12.5” graphics card, as well.

It’s set up with optimum cooling power, with two fans included with the build. One is on the front and one on the back to give adequate air circulation. Since the case has space, you can also add additional fans if you need to. All the air is ventilated out through vents on both the side and on the bottom.

As an additional feature, it has two handles for maximum portability. It’s an excellent choice for gamers who have to transport their case a lot for LAN parties.

Pros:

  • Can fit a maximum of five cooling fans
  • Multiple color and style options
  • Room for large CPU coolers (up to 7.1”)
  • Lots of room for customization

Cons:

  • Airflow isn’t perfect

2. Riotoro CR280

At first glance, you may not think the Riotoro CR280 would be a gaming-centric case. The cube-like composition looks more like something you’d see on your TV shelf, but functions just as well for gaming capabilities. It’s red and black coloring is classic to gaming components, meant to give that hardcore look. It’s got a tempered glass window, allowing you to see inside the body, giving it a futuristic feel. It will also let you see any RGB components you might choose to invest in.

It’s got ventilation at the front and the back of the case, which provides active exit points for hot air building up inside. Its composition is steel and aluminum, which makes it extremely durable compared to other Mini-ITX models. For drive capacity, it can fit up to two 3.5” or 2.5” drives, so it’s a bit on the small side.

Where ports are concerned, it is a bit lacking. It only has two 3.0 USB ports, so just enough for your necessary peripherals, and there are limited audio ports. That said, there is a pair of expansion ports located on the back of the case.

The best part about this Mini-ITX case is the price. It is a great budget option without sacrificing quality, especially where the composition is concerned. You can’t always find steel cases for a price this low, so it’s a great reason to scoop one up.

Pros:

  • Great ventilation
  • Durable design
  • Inexpensive

Cons:

  • Not many ports

3. Thermaltake Core P1

It’s the first Mini-ITX case from Thermaltake on our list, and it won’t be the last. Thermaltake is the most well-known maker of Mini-ITX cases, so they have the expertise behind them. The Core P1 is the best Mini-ITX case that is entirely open-air. By open-air, we mean that four sides of the case are wholly exposed. They have metal posts that support the tempered glass panel. While it allows for the best ventilation, there is some question about having your components exposed.

Because it’s open, with a clear tempered glass side panel, it’s very aesthetically pleasing. You can see all the inner workings of the computer, and it would look amazing with RGB lighting features. It can fit four drives total; two 2.5” externally, one 3.5” and 2.5” internally. It also has five expansion slots that offer the potential to upgrade and expand your rig.

There are two 3.0 USD ports, which is pretty standard for most Mini-ITX and one audio port. Both fans for ventilation are on the left side of the case. For this setup, those two are probably enough, as there is no lack of airflow in this case.

It offers versatility in terms of setup options, as well. You can configure it both vertically and horizontally. The horizontal configuration is particularly neat since it’s almost like a glass table with the components inside. It means that you have more options in terms of where you want to put your case. The argument against this is that it exposes all your parts to dust and other environmental factors that can damage them over time.

Pros:

  • Compatible with 14.9” GPUS
  • Compatible with 6.9” CPU coolers
  • Cool and unique appearance
  • Quite large

Cons:

  • Leaves components exposed to the elements

4. Thermaltake Core V1

We are going to move straight on to the Thermaltake Core P1s little brother, the Thermaltake Core V1. Though the names are similar, they are very different. The Thermaltake Core V1 is a more compact design with a much smaller footprint.

It’s been specially designed to house a well-running gaming setup. It is made almost entirely from steel, which makes it quite heavy despite its size. For this reason, it is best suited for those who game in a specific location and don’t tend to transport it often. Thermaltake uses steel as it hugely reduces the noise compared to other materials like aluminum or plastic.

The case features two 3.0 USB ports and two audio ports to install a microphone and headphones separately. For drive capacity, it can fit four drives total, two 2.5” and two 3.5”. There are also dual expansion slots that can provide room for additional cards. It comes kitted with one 200mm fan installed to the front, but it has room for an extra fan on the front as well as two more 80mm fans at the back.

Both sides of the case have ventilation to allow for maximum airflow, and the top panel includes a tempered glass window to see inside the case. Another fun feature is that the side panels are interchangeable, so you can move them around as needed to suit your preferences.

Pros:

  • Has the space for additional fans
  • Steel for durability and noise reduction
  • Interchangeable side panels

Cons:

  • Could use more USB ports
  • Heavy

5. In Win A1

The In Win A1 takes the next spot on our list with its unique and funky design. The first thing you’re likely to notice about this mini-ITX case is its RGB base. While there is no practical use for this, it looks pretty cool. In Win is known for thinking outside of the box, literally, and launching some amazing case designs. Their newest model is A1.

The case comes already cable managed, which is an absolute lifesaver when you’re building your PC. The power supply included is 600W and can support most standard ITX components, including graphics cards. You may need to upgrade it, though, if you’re looking to run some more powerful GPUs.

The cube style case has a tempered glass side, which allows you to see the internal components of the computer. With some RGB components, coupled with the RGB base, you could have a pretty attractive rig.

It’s super compact and therefore doesn’t have much space for upgrading components. That said, it’s capable of running basic games and looks great while doing it. It even has a built-in wireless Qi charger on the top where you can charge your phone.

Where ports are concerned, it’s pretty standard with other mini-ITX. It’s got two 3.0 USB ports and one audio port. It can fit four drive bays: two 2.5” and two 3.5”.

Pros:

  • Wireless Qi charger
  • Extremely compact design
  • RGB light-up base

Cons:

  • Not much option for expansion

6. NZXT H200i

The NZXT H200i is an all-round great pick for a mini-ITX case. It couples compact design with the space to contain some high-quality components. It does run a bit on the pricey side, but for what you get with this case, it’s worth it.

Due to it’s expertly designed interior, it can fit up to a 12.8” graphics card, which will be able to provide you with some reliable graphics output. There are mini-ITX cases on the list that can support a larger graphics card, but it’s not necessary to go above 12.8”. For the CPU cooler, it has the space for one up to 6.5”.

It’s got a smart hub, which is exclusive to the NZHT cases. The feature offers digital fan control and expandable options for RGB upgrades. It’s got a funky RGB LED light strip for added visual aesthetic and a tempered glass side panel. The case comes pre-equipped with two internal fans and quality cable management, which makes dealing with the components much more manageable.

For a small but mighty case that offers a perfect balance of lightweight design and space for expansion, the NZXT H200i is one of the best mini-ITX cases.

Pros:

  • Can house up to four fans
  • Can accommodate 12.8” graphics cards
  • NZXT smart hub for added control

Cons:

  • Not the best airflow
  • A bit pricey

7. Phanteks Evolv Shift

The Phanteks Evolv Shift is a slim, vertically designed mini-ITX case that deserves a spot on our top 10. Considering how thin the design is, it can house some very high-performing components, even further significant than most others on our list. Also, though it’s a mini build, it can easily fit full-size graphics cards. So, if you’re a gamer or a graphics card guru, this will be an excellent option for you. Accommodating up to 13.8” graphics cards, you won’t have to make any sacrifices in power when going for a mini-ITX case. They can do this because there’s a reversible mount on which you can install the GPU behind the motherboard. Their innovative design gives allowance for full-size cards, which is a rarity in mini-ITX cases.

Where it does fall slightly behind is that it restricts you to only SFX power supplies. Fortunately, some decent SFX power supplies can keep up with some of the better GPUs. It also has minimal CPU cooler space. I can only fit one that is 3.2” tall or less. It’s due to the slim design of the case. You’ll have to find a cooler that is made specially to be low profile.

You can get the Phanteks Evolv Shift in either gray or black, and both its sides are made of tempered glass. Throw some RGB components in there, and you’ll have a super sleek case. You can stand it upright, or have it horizontally depending on where you are planning on setting it up.

For drive capacity, it can fit just one 3.5” hard drive but three 2.5”.

Pros:

  • Slim design
  • Can house full-size graphics cards up the 13.8.”

Cons:

 

  • Only fits a low-profile cooler

8. Cooler Master Elite 110

The Cooler Master Elite 110 is undoubtedly the cheapest mini-ITX you’re going to get. Its cute cube design can be easily mounted anywhere you need it. It makes a perfect option for those using the computer for a media box or at a kiosk. It has one of the smallest footprints and can efficiently perform basic tasks. Of course, because it’s so tiny, you will be limited to component upgrades. If you’re after something super high functioning, it may not be the best.

By small, we mean small. It weighs in at under six pounds and can transport as needed. The front construction has a mesh design that allows complete airflow through the case. You can also attach a radiator onto the front panel if you want to, as well. Both the side panels and the top have vents for maximum ventilation. There is one fan included in the case, which is 120mm. It is likely all you will need since the case is very compact, but it does have the space to add two additional 80mm fans on the side panels.

For components, it can fit an 8.3” GPU and 3.0” CPU cooler. While this may be limiting in terms of expansion, it will do excellent for those who want the bare bones. It’s got two 3.0 USB ports and audio ports as well, which is standard in mini-ITX anyways.

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • Extremely compact
  • Cute, cube design

Cons:

  • No space for expansion
  • Cannot accommodate larger components

9. SilverStone RVZ02B

We include an additional slim design mini-ITX with incredible graphics card potential. It’s another option for gamers who want a high-performing graphics card but a small build in general. The thin designed case is super slick and can fit up to 13” long graphic cards. Its capabilities are lightly less than the Phanteks Evolv Shift, where the graphics card is concerned.

Again, this slim design isn’t the best for the CPU cooler and the power supply. It’s limited to the SFX power supply. Even smaller than the Evolv Shift, it can only house a CPU cooler that is 2.3”. There’s no space available to install a radiator, so you’ll have to find a super low-profile cooler.

You’ll also notice that there are no fans installed in this case. They’ve done that intentionally and designed the component housings to maximize ventilation. Both the GPUs and the CPUs individual fans will mount against the vents, so new fans shouldn’t be necessary.

The frame is made partially of steel and somewhat of plastic, which gives it a balance of durability and lightweight composition. In the port department, the SilverStone RVZ02B has two 3.0 USB ports and two audio ports (one for headphones, one for the mic). It also has space for two 2.5” drives and one 3.5” drive. For a slim-framed compact gaming rig, the SilverStone RVZ02B is an affordable option.

Pros:

  • Can house full-size graphics cards up to 13”
  • Sleek and sophisticated design
  • No internal fans needed

Cons:

  • Limited options for CPU coolers
  • Limited to SFX power supply

10. Thermaltake Suppressor F1

We are going to finish off our list with one last mini-ITX from Thermaltake. It’s their take on the cube-like design, and they’ve done a great job of maximizing the space. Its matte black design looks quite basic but offers some great functional features. The case is extremely compact and weighs under seven pounds.

It offers some modification options, which make it an extremely versatile choice compared to other cube designs on the market. It has the capabilities of housing four data storage devices, depending on how you decide to configure the case. It includes modular device racks to mount them to. Two expansion slots can fit 255mm cards.

It comes equipped with three mounted fans, one 200mm one on the front of the case, and two 80mm on the back. There is the opportunity to modify it further and add a fan in the front. There is also enough room on the inside to house up to a 140mm CPU cooling unit, including liquid cooling systems.

There are two 3.0 USB ports and two audio jacks for mic and headphone capabilities. It can also fit two 2.5” and two 3.5” drives. For its size, this mini-ITX cooler offers a lot more than it looks like.

Aesthetically, it has a viewing window on the top panel so you can view the components. It offers the opportunity to kit your rig with some fun RGB components. Since it’s a cube design, all the side panels can be interchanged to suit your personal preference.

Pros:

  • Maximized space in a compact design
  • Comes with three pre-installed fans
  • Can support liquid cooling units

Cons:

  • Airflow is slightly restricted as the front panel doesn’t have mesh.

What is a Mini-ITX Case?

So, what exactly is a Mini-ITX case? It’s the container that holds all your computer components, including a Mini-ITX motherboard, graphics card, cooling fans, and more. Everything that makes your computer function is within the case. If you are building a computer within a Mini-ITX case, then you will need a Mini-ITX motherboard.

The most crucial component of your build is the Mini-ITX motherboard. Although it’s one of the smallest motherboards on the market, about 7” long, it’s incredibly useful. It acts as the base for the rest of your computer’s components. Complete with the best and newest technology, you can get all the functions of a more massive build within a small case.

You can get a Mini-ITX case as small as just one foot wide, with groundbreaking designs that allow them to house high-performing components. The best of them have incredible cooling options as well as a full range of ports, so you don’t need to sacrifice functionality for size.

Common Uses of a Mini-ITX Case

So, what are these compact cases used for? You may be surprised, but more and more people are opting for Mini-ITX options as they are huge space savers. Here are some common uses of Mini-ITX cases.

1. Compact Gaming Case

Probably the most notable, and most common, is using them for smaller gaming builds. Whether you’re building your first gaming computer, on a budget, or want something lightweight, a Mini-ITX case can provide a great foundation. It’s especially popular for those who participate in a lot of LAN parties. The case is easily portable and can be moved from an office into a living room to hook up to larger monitors. It’s able to house some pretty impressive graphics cards, so no worries about loss of quality.

2. Media Box

With streaming platforms becoming increasingly more popular for watching television and movies, we no longer use traditional methods. DVDs, cable, and even satellite tv are becoming outdated. Consumers want a way to stream directly through their televisions and are now opting for Smart TVs. Though they do the trick, the web experience is lacking. For this reason, Mini-ITX cases are a great option to offer the benefits of a full PC interface right through your TV. The compact size means it can fit comfortably on shelves and provide an upgraded viewing experience than any other media box on the market.

3. Emulation Machines

Mini-ITX builds are a common choice for those who make emulation machines. Emulation does not require more than what can be achieved by a Mini-ITX, and therefore there it is not necessary to have a full-scale build for this purpose. They can run similar to a console and don’t take up much space. Emulator builders love the ability to transport these and operate them like a set-top-box.

4. Kiosks

For those who run small stalls or shops, a Mini-ITX is a great option. They lack the space to house full-size cases, nor do they need them. Typically, kiosks will need a cash register or ATM, which can efficiently run through a Mini-ITX. They are durable and have a small footprint, so they are a great option.

5. Server

Mini-ITX is more than adequate for building a server. Many professionals will use a Mini-ITX case to make high-end servers and like the fact that it is so compact.

Benefits of Choosing a Mini-ITX Case

There are many perks to choosing a Mini-ITX case over their larger counterparts.

High performing: The design of a Mini-ITX includes high-performing features straight out of the box. Most will have pre-loaded cooling systems, power supplies, and I/O ports already when you purchase them.

Small footprint: Mini-ITX cases are the best choice for those looking to build a compact computer. It’s great for entertainment and media systems or a portable gaming PC. In general, many people look for a smaller setup merely to reduce bulk for a streamlined appearance.

Affordability: Mini-ITX cases will typically cost less than a full-size case. They are an affordable option for anyone looking for a good quality build at a lower price. They can perform just as well as larger builds in a variety of different tasks.

Progressive design: Technology is moving fast; that’s for sure. New hardware continues to grow stronger with more capabilities. At the same time, we are finding out how to pack more power into smaller packages. We know that components will continue to shrink, so having a Mini-ITX case will allow you to stay current with the tech trends. It will also allow you to upgrade your components as new and more powerful ones come out since you’ll have the proper size case to house them.

Things to Consider When Purchasing and Mini-ITX Case

When you start browsing for the best Mini-ITX cases, there are a few main factors to consider. These include functional features that will enhance your experience, and others will be personal preference features.

1. Compatibility

If you’re considering a Mini-ITX case, then likely you are building a compact PC system. If you have specific components in mind for this build, it is vital to consider if they will be compatible with the case or not. When you look at the parts, they will list their form factors. Ensure that it’s going to fit inside the case. If it’s not compatible, then you’ll have to decide which is the most important to you.

Beyond ensuring the components fit into their slots, you also need to consider the physical space they will take up. They may be compatible, but if your cooler has a substantial heatsink, for example, then you may not be able to jam everything inside.

2. Cable Management

Many people often overlook cable management, but it’s imperative to consider. There is nothing worse than tangled up cables, and it can happen quickly without proper cable management. You will have a lot of stuff going on inside your case, and your life is much easier when everything is in its place. On top of that, Mini-ITX cases will usually have less airflow inside due to a high component-to-space ratio. It means that properly routing your cables can help reduce the heat by maximizing your fans’ performance capabilities.

3. Ventilation

It ties in with the above, but ventilation is essential in a Mini-ITX case. As previously stated, Mini-ITX cases are prone to reduced airflow. When you’re building the PC, you need to consider the ventilation path within the case and how the hot air will leave it. It will keep everything running smoothly and ensure your components stay healthier longer.

4. USB Ports

USB ports are a crucial factor to consider when purchasing a Mini-ITX case. First of all, all your peripherals will hook up via a USB. Your mouse and keyboard will need ports to plug into. On top of that, you’ll need extra USB ports for additional memory and to plug-in hard drives or USB sticks. You will want a minimum of two USB ports on a case. If possible, always opt for more.

5. GPU Space

With the most common purpose for a Mini-ITX build being gaming and media, you’ll likely want the best GPU you can get. You’ll need to consider which type of GPU you ultimately want to have and whether or not it will fit inside a Mini-ITX. There are possibilities for powerful options that are compatible. If there is a specific GPU, you are after, then just double check it’s going to work with a Mini-ITX case.

6. Location

The location you plan to put your mini-ITX will determine the size and shape you will want to buy. If you plan on having your Mini-ITX case on display, such as in your living room as a media box, then you may wish to have a flatter design. If it needs to fit on a specific shelf or area, then you will have to consider that as well. There are many different designs available in all sorts of shapes and sizes.

7. Drive Space

Even if your motherboard has enough hookup points, there needs to be the physical space to fit all your drives. You may end up grabbing some 2.5” drives so that they will squeeze in. They are typically for laptops, so you may find they run slightly hotter and slower than you’d like. Make sure to consider which drives you’re looking to get as you don’t want to overload the case.

8. Price

You’ll also need to consider your budget. How much do you have to spend on your Mini-ITX case? The more budget you have, the more features you can get. That said, in general, Mini-ITX cases are less costly then full-size builds anyway. And you can get a high-quality case even if you’re on a budget. Identify your budget before beginning your search, so you know which parameters you have and avoid looking at something that is out of budget.

If you’re looking to build a compact, yet functional PC system, a mini-ITX case is a must-have. With options available for everyone’s individual needs, there’s no reason why you can’t find a case you’re 100% happy with. You know what to consider when purchasing your case and are armed with ten of the best mini-ITX cases on the market to get you started.

 

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