Question What's a good mid-size ATX case that can used in HORIZONTAL orientation?

Digitrax

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Like the question says... a horizontal case (or tower that can be laid on its side and doesn't look ridiculous) for a full-sized (not micro) ATX MoBo, preferably a mid-size w/tempered glass.

So far, I've come up with the Thermaltake P3 — okay, but not fully enclosed; (good test bench though), the Cooler Master HAF XB Evo — good airflow, but a little on the large side and not particularly stylish, and the Cooler Master Q500L — lousy airflow, plus I hate the front-mounted PSU and acrylic window.

I've been using a Phanteks P400 on its side (glass facing up) but would like something more symmetrical (horizontally), and with power/reset, audio/USB jacks on the front (or at the front of the top, like Q300L).
Outside of server/rack cases (and µATX/mini ITX) there doesn't seem to be much. 8- (

(I was thinking maybe the PC 011 Dynamic, but don't know what it would look like sideways with the feet off. Anyone ever tried it and got pix?)
 
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Digitrax

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Not 'horizontal' per se, but I feel like a Cube case would probably tick most of your boxes?

Unfortunately, very, very few support ATX boards. Best I can think of is the Thermaltake Level 20 XT?
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16811133378
I should probably explain what I'm looking for a little better. Ideally, it's a tower (with left side tempered glass) that can be laid on its "solid" side and is shaped horizontally symmetrical with its feet taken off.
The idea being that I put my monitor, keyboard, and mouse on top (which is what I'm doing now with the P400, except that it's face is asymmetrical and its audio/USB jacks & power/reset buttons are on (what is now) the side.

The problem with cube cases — (e.g., the Cooler Master HAF XB Evo I had alluded to as well) is that they're too "thick" (vertically) and don't have enough top surface area for this purpose.

I do appreciate the effort/response, though. Thank you.
 
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Karadjgne

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The issue I see with dropping a tower on its side is the bottom ventilation. There's always a grill or 3 on the bottom, many times with a full cover dust shield and will look nothing like the top (right side). That left side is almost always pretty ugly since towers sit on them and case designers didn't intend for you to stick a monitor on a tempered glass window.
 

Digitrax

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The issue I see with dropping a tower on its side is the bottom ventilation. There's always a grill or 3 on the bottom, many times with a full cover dust shield and will look nothing like the top (right side). That left side is almost always pretty ugly since towers sit on them and case designers didn't intend for you to stick a monitor on a tempered glass window.
I don't mind the bottom (/"left side") grill, as long as there's a grill at the top as well. With my current (Phantek P400) case, I just pulled the PSU filter off, flattened the tabs for it, and put the same (magnetic) filter over both the bottom and top (which are now the sides) and it looks good enough. Really, if my current case didn't have a sloping front (and the jacks and buttons were up front) I'd be perfectly happy with it.

Still, I figure there's gotta be a home theater case with a tempered glass top, or a tower that's uniform from top to bottom and has the USB jacks (oriented in "I" formation) on the front. Wouldn't ya figure?
 

Digitrax

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Yeah, I looked at that one. Apparently, front intake airflow is pretty bad – likewise, the Cooler Master Q500L, or that would work too – plus the "DIY PC" logo would be upside down.
Thanks for the suggestion, though.

I'm starting to think my best bet might be trying to build a "perimeter" enclosure around the Thermaltake Core P3.
 

Digitrax

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I think I've got it!
What if I were to put the Corsair Carbide Air 540 on it's side?
While it ends up being a "cube case" in that orientation, the tempered glass (that ends up on top) would still be big enough to put a monitor and keyboard on.
Anyone tried it?
 

Karadjgne

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No. I doubt anyone ever has a keyboard that close to a monitor means your head is also that close to the monitor, so the picture is going to be pixelated like crazy. Kinda like sitting arms length away from a TV, just looks like crap.
 

jeremyj_83

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Like the question says... a horizontal case (or tower that can be laid on its side and doesn't look ridiculous) for a full-sized (not micro) ATX MoBo, preferably a mid-size w/tempered glass.

So far, I've come up with the Thermaltake P3 — okay, but not fully enclosed; (good test bench though), the Cooler Master HAF XB Evo — good airflow, but a little on the large side and not particularly stylish, and the Cooler Master Q500L — lousy airflow, plus I hate the front-mounted PSU and acrylic window.

I've been using a Phanteks P400 on its side (glass facing up) but would like something more symmetrical (horizontally), and with power/reset, audio/USB jacks on the front (or at the front of the top, like Q300L).
Outside of server/rack cases (and µATX/mini ITX) there doesn't seem to be much. 8- (

(I was thinking maybe the PC 011 Dynamic, but don't know what it would look like sideways with the feet off. Anyone ever tried it and got pix?)
Look into HTPC cases.
 

Digitrax

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No. I doubt anyone ever has a keyboard that close to a monitor means your head is also that close to the monitor, so the picture is going to be pixelated like crazy. Kinda like sitting arms length away from a TV, just looks like crap.
I didn't ask if anyone has put their keyboard atop it, just whether anyone had tried the the Air 540 on it's side ('cuz it looks like an intended use-case scenario).

Actually, at 32" — the distance I currently sit from my monitor, with both it and my keyboard atop my Phanteks P400 (on its side) — my monitor is "retina"* (i.e., you can't distinguish individual pixels). I probably type with my arms a little more outstretched than most (16-18" keyboard to chest) but not uncomfortably so, and if I'm writing for an extended period, I'll often put it in front of it; (I just want the ability to "store" it there).
Is the Air 540 that much shorter than the P400?

*According to https://www.designcompaniesranked.com/resources/is-this-retina/; (bear in mind, I'm at 1440p).
 
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Digitrax

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Look into HTPC cases.
You don't seriously think I didn't think of that, do you?
I've looked at dozens! They're virtually all for µATX or Mini ITX, and none (that I've seen) have tempered glass on top.

Incidentally, I used to have the exact same MoBo – (Gigagbyte Z87X-UD4H) – as you. Good little board — rock solid.
 

USAFRet

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I didn't ask if anyone has put their keyboard atop it, just whether anyone had tried the the Air 540 on it's side ('cuz it looks like an intended use-case scenario).

Actually, at 32" — the distance I currently sit from my monitor, with both it and my keyboard atop my Phanteks P400 (on its side) — my monitor is "retina"* (i.e., you can't distinguish individual pixels). I probably type with my arms a little more outstretched than most (16-18" keyboard to chest) but not uncomfortably so, and if I'm writing for an extended period, I'll often put it in front of it; (I just want the ability to "store" it there).
Is the Air 540 that much shorter than the P400?

*According to https://www.designcompaniesranked.com/resources/is-this-retina/; (bear in mind, I'm at 1440p).
An AIR 540 can indeed be put on its side. I've not done it with mine, but no reason you couldn't.

Standing upright, the 540 is 18" tall.
Laid on its side (PSU side down), it would be approx 13.5", once you put some rubber feet on that bottom side.


http://forum.corsair.com/v3/showthread.php?t=140858
https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/240974-laying-the-carbide-air-540-on-its-side/

(scroll down for such a useage)
https://www.overclock.net/forum/161-computer-cases/1404897-official-corsair-carbide-air-540-owner-s-club-gallery-14.html
 

jeremyj_83

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You don't seriously think I didn't think of that, do you?
I've looked at dozens! They're virtually all for µATX or Mini ITX, and none (that I've seen) have tempered glass on top.

Incidentally, I used to have the exact same MoBo – (Gigagbyte Z87X-UD4H) – as you. Good little board — rock solid.
I have found one HTPC case that has tempered glass and is ATX https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00UPIPYMG/?tag=pcpapi-20. If you were to forgo the tempered glass there are quite a few that are full ATX. I built my HTPC with the SilverStone GD09B which is a full ATX case.
 
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