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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | System Case | Styles and Sizes ]

Comparison of Case Styles

The table below compares and summarizes the different case styles and their advantages and disadvantages.

Note: The number of bays depends on the case, but the numbers given are typical ranges based on what I usually see . For external bays, the first number is how many 3.5" bays the case typically will have, and the second is how many 5.25" bays. Internal bays are usually 3.5". Power supply ratings are measured in watts (W) and are just what is typical for the style. Getting a full tower case is no guarantee of a 300 watt power supply, but it's much more likely to find one in a full tower than a mini tower.

Case Style

Size

External Bays

Internal Bays

Cooling

Power Supply

Cost

Full Tower

Large

2 + 4 or more

3 to 5 or more

Best

250 to 375 +

High

Mid Tower

Med

2 + 3

2 to 4

Better

200 to 300

Med

"Midi" Tower

Small to Med

2 + 2 or
2 + 3

2 to 4

Good

170 to 300

Low to Med

Mini Tower

Small

2 + 2

2 or 3

Good

170 to 250

Low

Desktop

Small

2 + 2

1 or 2

OK

150 to 230

Low

Slimline

Very Small

1 + 2

1 or 2

Worse

90 to 200

Low

Next: Form Factors


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