Boutique builders like AVADirect, iBUYPOWER, and Maingear have introduced some killer Mini-ITX gaming systems this year, and Lian Li now has some sharp-looking new Mini-ITX cases for us DIYers. Starting in May, the popular PC chassis maker will be launching the fanless PC-Q27 and the fan-bearing PC-Q28, which has a larger footprint. Both cases are constructed with Lian Li’s hallmark brushed aluminum.
Aimed at everything from office use to gaming and being a home theater PC (HTPC), the PC-Q27 is tiny. It’s only 7.8 inches wide x 11.8 inches tall x 9.4 inches deep, and relies on vents in the back and bottom of the chassis. The PC-Q27 is pretty flexible, as far as stocking it goes, but you’re in for a game of compromises, due to its size. Want three hard drives? Sure, but you’ll have to use the 5.25-inch slot for one of them, which means no optical drive in your system. Want a fan at the bottom of the chassis? No problem, but you’ve just lost a 3.5-inch drive slot (which could have alternatively held a 2.5-inch SSD, though there’s another place to store a 2.5-inch SSD, if necessary).
The Lian Li PC-Q27 Mini-ITX Chassis.
The PC-Q28 is a little deeper than its sibling and has a 140mm intake fan at the front and a 120mm exhaust fan at the top. The intake fan has an air filter. Lian Li is billing the chassis as more modder friendly, thanks to a removable hard drive cage. Depending on how you handle the hard drive cage and the types of drives you want to install, you can add up to seven drives (3.5-inch and 2.5-inch). The deep design allows for graphics cards up to 11.4-inches long.
The Lian Li PC-Q28.
Both systems have a dual red/blue LED power button, and both have I/O ports at the right side of the chassis (near the front) to keep the front of the system clean. The PC-Q27 will ring in at $78.99, while the PC-Q28 will be available for $188.99. If your budget is closer to free than those prices, head over to Lian Li’s Facebook page and give it some love. (Well, a Like.)