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What should you take into account when choosing a box for your PC?

Aesthetics or performance? We put a cable in the most subjective decision of your team

The box or Tower of our PC is a component with a very simple basic function: keep all our components in a safe and orderly manner. However, this goal enjoys many approaches ranging from the traditional drawer with fans to PC mounted on walls, through authentic displays with dynamic lighting and tempered glass or boxes that could fit on our shelf.

It is the component with the best offer to choose from and, naturally, it is also the most subjective decision when it comes to choosing our team. However, we must all take into account a number of features when choosing our PC box and these are some of the features that this special deals with.

Without further ado, let's look roughly at what we should look at when choosing the home that will shelter our PC.

Sizes to suit each user

The first stop is obvious, to be able to mount our equipment inside the box, we will have to choose a box according to the size of our components. Of the latter, we must pay special attention to those who occupy more space within our equipment, such as the motherboard, our GPU or the power supply.

The size of the plate

The motherboard is the main conditioning factor when choosing a box for our equipment, but it is also one that enjoys a greater variety in its size. Due to this variety, the base plates have an easily identifiable standardized dimension that they share between plates with the corresponding label, as we can see in the following image.

Another important feature is to observe the number of Slots occupied by the graph (that is, the bays on the back, where we put the graph and access its video connectors), although most of the boxes will not have limitations if we only use one graphic, it is important to look at it in smaller boxes.

Form factors and the three approximations

Once seen the two previous points we can talk about the denominations that receive the boxes for PC according to their size. Generally, they are related to the size of the base plate for which the box has been designed and its classification allows us to quickly differentiate between models. The most common of these denominations are:

Full-Tower: are the largest towers and are often used in workstations or teams enthusiastic for its expansion capacity and its cooling possibilities.

Mid-Tower: Most commercial boxes addressed to ATX boards have this format. They are of those that we find the bigger offer and have a good balance between expandability and size.

Micro-Tower: the Mini-Tower are aimed at the mATX and ITX motherboards, they have a reduced expandability in exchange for occupying a better space.

SFF (Small Form Factor): they are usually exclusive boxes with a specific purpose, such as mounting a living room PC the size of a player or console. Although there is currently a growing enthusiastic market for SFF boxes targeting complete small format equipment.

We can find boxes of all kinds with these four factors of form, although the most common is to see that the characteristics of these boxes have a preferred approach to one of these three sections. This is why we usually talk about boxes focused on the aesthetic section, the silence of this while using the equipment, or the performance or temperature of the components. Choosing which of these three sections we are most interested in is essential to correctly choose our favorite tower.

The 'Airflow' What should we look for?

The Airflow in the PC construction world is the term used to refer to the air flows inside a computer case, usually referring to how it takes and expels air (both hot and cold) in a circuit internal. The Airflow is one of the most important sections when choosing our PC box since all the components of our equipment generate heat that needs to be dissipated, Airflow being one of the best tools for this.

There are many ways to configure the way in which the air moves our PC, but in any case, we must find that our box has a good reception of air and ability to eject it efficiently.

A good example of this is found in the previous image, where the front grille contains two fans that introduce cold air, while two other parts help to expel the hot air that dissipates the fans of the CPU and GPU.

Regarding the latter, it is important to observe how the rear fan is aligned with the CPU's heatsink, while the GPU uses the fan from the source to move the air inside. Check the optimal airflow of the box of our choice is not as simple as the previous section, and this time we will have to check whether the manufacturer itself provides an option or, option B, verify that users have to say have already purchased the box we want.

In order to keep our fans functional, it is important to eliminate dust that may accumulate in these parts, so air filters are a very interesting addition to our purchase, which facilitates the maintenance and extends the life of our fans.

The Airflow is an extensive and essential theme to keep our equipment in optimal conditions, therefore, we will dedicate a special around it, its operation and the best fans that we can buy at our discretion.

Construction and accessories

Although Airflow, the factor of form and size are the two most important sections to take into account to choose our favorite box, there are other factors that, although smaller, can make a difference in the face of our purchase decision. Of all these characteristics, we give special importance to these:

Tool Free Design. Popular in current boxes, the models that allow us to operate with them using the least number of tools possible will always be a plus for us, for their convenience when working with the equipment and for cleaning.

Space for wiring management. If your team looks good on the outside you should look good on the inside and one of the sections that help the least is the amalgam of wires that usually appear on the side of the box. Models that allow us to order and manage these cables in an orderly manner and without the need to use external elements will always be welcome.

Mounts for fans. More mounts mean more fans, and more fans mean more flexibility to configure the air flows in our box.

Mounts for hard drives. Few more ridiculous situations must not be able to mount more storage in your equipment, being the possessor of the pertinent discs, for not having the necessary frames to carry out this task, check in the specifications of the manufacturer the number of 3.5 and 2 discs , 5 inches that we can put in our box.

Noise suppressors. For those who appreciate silence should check if the box they want has noise suppressors in the frames and closures of the box that reduce vibrations, as well as side panels that reduce the sound produced by the fans and components of our equipment. It is easy to find this in the manufacturer's specifications.

Support for radiators and similar. If we are going for a liquid cooling, whether pre-assembled or not, it is essential to check if our box can assemble the radiator that we want to acquire. In the case of a custom loop, details such as an exit to renew or empty the tank or maintenance outputs are points that we must take into account.

Construction of the tower. This section is usually related to the range of the tower itself, is common to find that the cheaper ones have plastic elements or metallic edges that are not very polished. Currently, except boxes of very low cost, we can enjoy towers with metal construction almost entirely and with rough finishes that allow us to build on our box without fear.

Taking into account these sections we can choose our favorite gaming tower or box. Do you want to know what our recommendations are? Soon we will publish a list of them. We hope to see you there soon!

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