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PC Case Review: Corsair Carbide SPEC-04 Mid-Tower Gaming Case – Gameranx (blog)

Corsair’s budget hardware case offers a lot for the price.

A sleek, modern design makes Corsair’s Carbide SPEC-04 stand out. It has everything you’d be expecting for a case and it does so at a very affordable price: under $50 USD. It’s lightweight, roomy, and extremely stylish. It also comes with everything needed, including ample room for up to four harddrives and more.

Specifications

  • Dimensions (mm) 201 x 492 x 433 (W x D x H)
  • Material Steel, plastic
  • Available colours Black/grey, Black/red, Black/yellow
  • Weight 4.2kg
  • Front panel Power, reset, 1 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0
  • Drive bays 3 x 3.5″/2.5″, 2 x 2.5″
  • Form factor(s) ATX, micro-ATX, mini-ITX
  • Cooling 2 x 140mm/120mm front fan mounts (1 x 120mm LED fan included), 1 x 140mm/120mm rear fan mount, 2 x 120mm roof fan mounts (fans not included)
  • CPU cooler clearance 150mm
  • Maximum graphics card length 370mm
  • Extras Removable dust filters

The case is also easy to set up, it has a side window and good air filtering. It also has room for many things it doesn’t include, such as additional fans.

That’s right—this is a single fan case. With the SPEC-04, there is one fan located in the front. While rear cooling is massively superior and having more fans is ideal for running a high end machine, this is clearly a stylistic approach: it’s LED and the lights beam out. It looks good even if it’s not as effective as one would like, running hotter than is ideal for top of the line equipment right out of the box. You can (and should!) install additional fans and fans are very cheap to acquire, so it’s not too much of a sacrifice since the case itself is already very affordable.

 

The inside is a standard ATX layout with support for both micro-ATX and mini-ITX. There’s no optical drive bay, but it’s also 2017: you probably don’t need a DVD or blu-ray drive and if you insist on getting one, the external versions do the job. However, one place where it does fall short inside is cable management. Inside there’s limited space surrounding the motherboard and the CPU power cable gets obscured by the motherboard. It’s not extraordinarily compromised, but better design is expected from companies like Corsair despite the case’s affordability.

Still, at the end of the day, this is an aggressively stylish case. It’s also priced surprisingly cheap. This isn’t meant to be a top end case for an affluent gamer. This is a budget case that provides style to those who otherwise would have to sacrifice it. You can’t always have your cake and eat it, too—but with SPEC-04, you can at least have a few crumbs to enjoy.

The Carbide SPEC-04 is an amazing budget case for gaming rigs; it’s just not a total steal as its downsides are noticeable in both cooling quality and cable optimization. In other words, if you’re on a budget this is your savior. If you’re building a medium to high end gaming rig, go to a higher end case like Corsair’s 270R.

A case was provided for review by Corsair.


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