Hardware Guides stub

Case Manufacturers Inadvertently Worsening Framerate & Power Performance

Posted on October 19, 2017

Our newest video leverages years of data to make a point about the case industry: Thermal testing isn't just to find a potential item of nitpicking or discussion -- it has actual ramifications in frequency response, power consumption/leakage, and even gaming performance. The current trend of case design has frighteningly spiraled into design trends that are actively worsening performance of systems. This is a regular cycle, to some extent, where the industry experiments with new design elements and trends -- like tempered glass and RGB lights -- and then culls the worst of the implementations. It's time for the industry to make its scheduled, pendulous swing back toward performance, though, and better accommodate thermals that prevent frequency decay on modern GPUs (which are sensitive to temperature swings).

This is a video-only format, for today. Although the content starts with a joke, the video makes use of charts from the past year or two of case testing that we've done, highlighting the most egregious instances of a case impacting performance of the entire system. We hope that the case manufacturers consider thermals with greater importance moving forward. The video makes the point, but also highlights that resolving poor case design with faster fans will negate any "silent" advantage that a case claims to offer. Find all of that below:


This is just part of why we run noise and thermal tests. Sure, some problems can be solved with brute force -- like liquid -- but that still forces the brute force options to work harder than they should, and that begins impacting cooler longevity (coolant permeation), noise emissions from the case, and price of additional components.

We hope to see more manufacturers keeping airflow in mind.

Editorial: Steve Burke
Video: Andrew Coleman