Lian Li PC-A05N
Written by Michael Larabel in Enclosures on 6 July 2009. Page 2 of 3. 7 Comments

Examination:

From the exterior, the Lian Li PC-A05N looks like a normal computer enclosure. This case is quite small with dimensions of just 210 x 381 x 490 mm and a net weight of merely four kilograms. Most of the magic about this product rests within the case itself. On the front of the case are the two 5.25" and one 3.5" drive bays. The LED indicators, power, and reset buttons are positioned below and to the left of the 3.5" drive bay. Towards the bottom of the case is Lian Li's logo. With this case's design, the warm air exits at the front of the computer rather than at the rear. The venting holes for this case are positioned along the left and right sides of the aluminum front bezel, which leaves the front of the case with a nice clean finish. On the top of the case there are two USB 2.0 ports and audio ports for a microphone and headphones. Sadly, there are no IEEE-1394 Firewire or eSATA ports at the front of this chassis.

On both sides of the case is just a plain finish with no side window, fan mounts, nor other attributes. Due to the back-to-front design of this case and with the motherboard being flipped 180 degrees, the main side panel that most users will need to open is the right side, not the left.

On the backside of the Lian Li PC-A05N are the power supply connector, 120mm intake fan, the I/O panel, and seven expansion slots. There are also some venting holes above and next to the expansion slots; the expansion slot covers are also vented. The ATX power supply mount for this case is actually positioned at the front of the enclosure, but the power supply connector at the rear is simply a power cable that extends around to the front side. This case is affixed with many vibration grommets and vibration reduction clips in an effort to silence this case and the hardware that it is housing.

When opening up the case the PC-A05N's unique internal layout can be easily grasped. Besides the motherboard being mounted against the opposite side of the case compared to most ATX enclosures, the motherboard is also flipped around 180 degrees so that the expansion slots are actually higher than the I/O panel area and CPU socket(s). This rotating of the motherboard is not the first time this has been done but can be seen previously in other models and those from SilverStone Technology. With this case's design of pulling in the air from the rear and exhausting at the front, the motherboard, CPU, and any installed graphics cards are to get the coolest air while the warmer air is pointed at the optical drive bays, hard drives, and power supply. While this case is small, an ATX motherboard can fit quite well inside.


At the front of the case are the tool-free 5.25" drive bays, the 3.5" drive bays with their unique mounting slots, and then the power supply mount. In order to install the power supply, the front bezel must first be removed. The fans used in this chassis are rated for 1500RPM and are very quiet. The top cover of this case can also be easily removed by just removing four screws.


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