MLC 2022 Best of Awards | View Winners

Best HTPC Cases Worth Buying

Best HTPC Cases Worth Buying

Make Life Click is reader-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. More details

Building a Home Theater PC or HTPC is similar to building a regular computer except that you need to think miles ahead of the parts you need, or else compatibility could be an issue.

One part that is of utmost importance is the case. It will serve as the enclosure of your build. Plus any other part will depend on it such as your motherboard, storage drives, and cooling.

Lucky for you, I’ve created this guide on the best HTPC cases available today, emphasizing different needs and part configurations. Let’s get to it!

How to choose an HTPC case?

Before we get to the list of the best HTPC cases worth buying, let me walk you through the different things to consider when choosing an HTPC case.

Size

The size of your HTPC case will determine the components that you can fit inside. The size of your living room or home theater setup will also be a factor when choosing a case.

For instance, a compact HTPC case is suitable if you have a small living room. A mini ITX tower will also suffice.

If you’re constantly moving from one place to another, you’d also be better off getting a smaller HTPC case that’s portable.

However, if you have a lot of space, then you can opt for a large PC case for your HTPC. This way, you can fit more storage devices in your media center.

Cooling

Although they’re not power-hungry, HTPCs still need adequate cooling and your case choice will affect that.

Choosing a good HTPC case with good airflow and cooling capabilities is better. If possible, choose a case with large fans or with mounting holes for extra fans. 

Good airflow is also needed if you’re going for an HTPC that is capable of gaming but for HTPC builds that use an APU or built-in graphics, a single fan will be enough. 

Just make sure that you’re cooling the CPU properly to prevent overheating or sudden shutdowns. This happens when the CPU reaches its thermal limit. It’s a protective measure to prevent your processor from getting toasted.

Noise

Computers generate noise and since you’re building a home theater PC, you should find a case that’s not too noisy. What I mean is that you have to choose a computer case that does not sound like a jet when the fans are on.

One cause of case noise is turbulence due to the proximity of the fans to the other components.  The solution is to choose a case with enough space.

Another cause of the noise is heat, which is related to our previous point about cooling. 

If your HTPC temps are high, then the fans will spin faster to eliminate heat. The high RPM of these fans leads to a noisier build.

You can prevent this by buying a case with passive cooling or opting for quiet fans like Noctua.

Aesthetic

How your Home Theater PC looks is also a factor to consider. You’re most likely going to place your HTPC in your living room, beside your television and sound setup, right? 

This is why you want to have a good-looking HTPC case. There are tons of cases out there with sleek and modern designs that will go well with your living room setup.

If you want a more retro look, then there are also retro cases available.

Ease of Use

Another important factor to consider would be the ease of use. Ask yourself these questions to see if the HTPC case you’re looking to buy is suitable for your needs.

  • Are the storage drives accessible?
  • How easy is it to replace components?
  • How can you organize the interior?
  • Is it maintenance-free?
  • Is the case accessible if you need to clean it?

These questions might sound trivial but these are questions you should be asking before buying an HTPC case. For example, cleaning and maintenance can be a pain if your HTPC has no proper accessibility.

Best HTPC Cases Worth Buying

Now that you know the things to consider when buying an HTPC case, let’s move forward to our round-up.

editorspick

Asrock Desk Mini X300W

The best compact barebones HTPC case kit. Just plug in your processor, memory, and storage, and you’re all set.

4.5/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: Asrock
Asrock Desk Mini X300W
See Price on Amazon
…and another 105 Reviews

The Download

The Asrock Desk Mini X300W is a compact barebones kit that’s just under $200. And for that price, it’s pretty hard to beat.

This kit already comes with a case, a motherboard, a CPU cooler, and a power supply. All you have to do is to get a processor, storage device, and memory. It also comes with a small WiFi kit.

Since this kit comes with its own motherboard, Asrock decided to go for SODIMM memory instead of the regular LODIMM kits found on common computers. SODIMM memory is usually used in laptops and is smaller than regular RAM kits.

Besides being small, the X300W looks inconspicuous. You can put it in your living room and no one would notice that you have a small computer right there.

Remember though that the Desk Mini X300W is made for APU builds. You can’t plug in a dedicated graphics card which puts high-end gaming out of the equation.

The Asrock Desk Mini X300W comes in an Intel LGA 1200 or AMD AM4 socket. The sockets are not interchangeable so make sure to choose carefully. 

It’s worth noting that the AMD built-in graphics are more powerful than the Intel. If you want to game a little then you might want to go that route instead.

The Specs

  • Max RAM:  64 GB DDR4 SODIMM
  • RAM Speed:  2666 MHz
  • CPU Socket:  AMD AM4 or Intel LGA 1200
  • Weight:  4.75 pounds
  • Size:  9 x 8.5 x 7.5 inches
  • USB:  3.2 interface

What’s in the Box?

  • Case
  • Motherboard
  • Power Supply Brick
  • WiFi Kit
  • CPU Cooler
  • User Manual
  • Driver CD

Stuff I like

  • Compact Size
  • Barebones kit – motherboard, cooler, and PSU included
  • Sleek design

Stuff I like less

  • AM5 support in the next version
  • Add-ons like extra USB ports are hard to find
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

contender

InWin Chopin Pro

The InWin Chopin Pro is worth considering for HTPC APU builds. It looks great, is minimal, and is compatible with small form factor PC parts. The included power supply is more than enough for most processors with built-in graphics.

4.5/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: InWin
InWin Chopin Pro
See Price on Amazon
…and another 84 Reviews

The Download

The InWin Chopin Pro is a staple when it comes to APU builds because of its design, size, and price. The Chopin Pro already includes a 200W 80+ Gold power supply – perfect for APUs such as the Ryzen 7 5700G.

The Chopin Pro has a perforated mesh panel for ventilation. You can also fit CPU coolers that are under 43mm. The air will come in through the mesh panel and go directly on top of the CPU.

It only comes in a Titanium Grey color but you can customize the look through colored I/O stripes.

For an HTPC, the Chopin Pro can be oriented horizontally or vertically to match your home theater space. 

This case has better storage options compared to the X300W because it has a 2.5-inch drive support at the back.

If you’re looking for a more affordable option, the regular InWin Chopin might be for you. The only difference is the included power supply.

The Chopin Pro has a 200W 80+ Gold PSU while the regular Chopin has a 150W 80+ Bronze unit. Both power supplies are great and will work with most APUs available today.

Lastly, the regular Chopin comes in Silver and Black

The Specs

  • Color:  Titanium Grey
  • Case Type:  Mini-ITX Tower
  • Materials:  SECC and Aluminum
  • Motherboard Type:  Mini ITX
  • CPU Cooler Height:  43mm Max
  • I/O Ports:  2 x USB 3.0 and HD Audio
  • Drive Bays:  2 x 2.5-inch drive bays
  • Power Supply:  InWin 200W 80+ Gold PSU
  • Case Size:  9.6 x 3.3 x 8.6 inches
  • Weight:  4.8 lbs

What’s in the Box?

  • Case
  • Power Supply

Stuff I like

  • Compact Size
  • Cooler compatibility
  • 200W 80+ Gold PSU
  • Modern Design

Stuff I like less

  • More color options (white perhaps)
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

budgetpick

Silverstone SG13

The Silverstone SG13 is an affordable mini ITX cube case with different versions to choose from. It’s affordable, yet packs a lot of space for storage and a dedicated graphics card. All of these features are for around $75, which makes it a no-brainer.

4.5/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Silverstone
Silverstone SG13
See Price on Amazon
…and another 1,198 Reviews

The Download

The Silverstone SG13 has been around for quite some time. Now, it has a lot of versions available but, the one worth considering is the version with a mesh front. 

Since HTPC cases are compact but need adequate cooling, the mesh front SG13 has an advantage over the solid front panel version. You can even install a 120mm or 140mm all-in-one liquid CPU cooler in the front. If not, an extra fan is appreciated for better cooling.

Another great thing about the SG13 is its support for an ATX power supply. SFX power supplies are more expensive compared to their ATX counterparts. So the ability to use an ATX PSU in a case this size is well-appreciated.

The problem with using an ATX PSU in this case though is CPU cooler height restrictions. You’ll be restricted to coolers that are 61mm tall. Shifting to an SFX PSU will give you an extra 21mm of space to work with.

Storage is not a problem with the SG13. You can mount a single 3.5-inch storage drive and a 2.5-inch drive at the same time. You can also go for three 2.5-inch drives instead.

If you’re building an HTPC for gaming, the Silverstone SG13 is worth considering because of its graphics card support.Dual slot graphics cards up to 10.6 inches long will fit in this case. But if you’re going to install a 140mm fan up front, your graphics card space will be reduced to 9.6 inches. This isn’t bad because you can still fit powerful graphics cards, such as the RTX 3060, or mid-range cards like the GTX 1660 Super.

The Specs

  • Colors:  Black, White, Pink
  • I/O:  2 x USB 3.0 Type-A or 1 x USB 3.0 Type-A and 1 x USB 3.2 Type-C
  • Front pane:  Mesh or Solid
  • Power Supply:  ATX or SFX (Needs an ATX to SFX bracket)
  • Dimensions:  8.74 x 7.13 x 11.22 inches
  • Weight:  4.41 pounds

Stuff I like

  • Graphics Card Support
  • Fits ATX or SFX Power Supply
  • 120mm or 140mm fan support
  • Minimalist design

Stuff I like less

  • Build quality
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

budgetpick

Cooler Master NR200P

The Coolermaster NR200P is an excellent beginner-friendly SFF case that won’t break the bank. It’s easy to use and has a lot of color options, which is perfect if you have a themed home theater setup.

4.5/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Cooler Master
Cooler Master NR200P
See Price on Amazon
…and another 2,978 Reviews

The Download

The Coolermaster NR200P is a small form factor tower that can house a mini ITX motherboard, SFX power supply, storage drives, and seven (yes, seven) case fans for your cooling needs.

It’s such a small case yet packs a lot of features. 

One of the strengths of the NR200P is cooling since it has several fan mounts. It can also support 280mm radiators or air coolers that are 155mm tall.

Triple-slot GPUs fit right in as long as they are under 330mm. You can also mount your GPU vertically for aesthetic reasons.

The NR200P is also easy to build on. The panels can be removed without using tools and this gives you the freedom to move around cables and other parts.

To top it all, there are 7 colorways to choose from, including black, black/grey, teal, pink, purple, orange, or white. There’s also an option for a vented side panel or a tempered glass side panel if you want to showcase your build.

Ultimately, it’s a great HTPC case that checks all the right boxes mentioned in how to choose an HTPC case section above.

The Specs

  • Colors:  Black, Black/Grey, Teal, Pink, Purple, Orange, White
  • I/O:  2 x USB Type-A, audio jack
  • Power Supply:  SFX
  • Motherboard:  mini-ITX or mini-DTX
  • Graphics Card:  Triple slot (330mm)
  • CPU Cooler:  155mm air cooler
  • Liquid Cooler support:  Yes up to 280mm radiators

What’s in the Box?

  • Cooler Master NR200P
  • 1x PCIe 3.0 x16 riser cable

Stuff I like

  • Affordable price
  • Full of features
  • Great color options

Stuff I like less

  • Better 3.5-inch drive support
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

bestvalue

Fractal Design Ridge

The Fractal Design Ridge is a clean-looking console-type small form factor case that’s perfect for a home theater setup. It takes all the great things from its predecessor Node 202 into a stylish package.

4.5/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Fractal Design
Fractal Design Ridge
See Price on Amazon
…and another

The Download

Fractal Design ended 2022 on a high note as it released the Ridge – a new console-type computer case that’s perfect for a home theater. Banking on the great feedback of the Node 202, the Ridge features an aesthetic design without sacrificing usability.

The Ridge can fit a mini ITX motherboard and an SFX power supply. There’s also support for a 120mm radiator or a 280mm radiator if there’s no graphics card installed.

For gamers, the Ridge supports video cards of up to 335mm in length and 137mm in height. Coolers under 70mm will work well too.

There are four 2.5-inch drive mounts but there’s no space for a 3.5-inch drive. There are a lot of affordable 2.5-inch SSDs out there, so storage is not a problem.

The Ridge comes with a horizontal or vertical stand, and you can place it in whatever orientation you prefer without sacrificing performance or cooling.

The Specs

  • Colors:  Black, White
  • I/O:  1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C | 2 x USB 3.0 Type-A, Combo jack
  • Front panel:  Fine Mesh
  • Power Supply:  SFX or SFX-L
  • Motherboard:  mini-ITX
  • Graphics Card:  Tripe Slot cards up to 335mm in length
  • CPU Cooler:  70mm Max Height
  • Liquid Cooler support:  Yes (120mm radiator or 280mm radiator without GPU)

What’s in the Box?

  • Case
  • Accessory box
  • Manual

Stuff I like

  • Excellent looking design
  • Lots of space to work with
  • Great GPU support and thermals

Stuff I like less

  • Average CPU thermals
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

alsoconsider

Fractal Node 202

Minimalist and modern is the motto of the Fractal Node 202. It’s the perfect alternative to the Fractal Ridge if you want a clean-looking HTPC case that can house a capable gaming build.

4.5/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: Fractal Design
Fractal Node 202
See Price on Amazon
…and another 455 Reviews

The Download

The Fractal Node 202 is the predecessor of the Fractal Ridge and they share a lot of similarities such as the layout and compatibility.

The Node 202 has a small footprint of around 10.2 liters and it doesn’t look like a computer at all when oriented vertically or horizontally.

This case fits a mini ITX case and an SFX or SFX-L power supply comfortably. It also fits graphics cards that are up to 310mm in length.

There’s enough ventilation through the mesh grills on the side – one for the graphics card and one for the CPU. Because of its size, you can’t expect the thermals to be at par with a full-size computer. It’s not great but manageable.

The Specs

  • Colors:  Black
  • I/O:  2 x USB Type-A
  • Power Supply:  SFX
  • Motherboard:  mini-ITX
  • Graphics Card:  Up to 310mm in length

What’s in the Box?

  • Node 202 computer case
  • Accessory box
  • Vertical stand
  • Riser card for graphics card
  • User Manual

Stuff I like

  • Minimalist design
  • Routed cables
  • GPU support

Stuff I like less

  • Thermals
  • Thin drive mounts
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

bestvalue

SSUPD Meshroom S

The SSUPD Meshroom S is a compact ATX case with fine mesh panels for great airflow. It’s perfect for an HTPC setup without diving into the small form factor parts such as an ITX motherboard.

4.5/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: SSUPD
SSUPD Meshroom S
See Price on Amazon
…and another 1 Reviews

The Download

The SSUPD Meshroom S is a no-compromise small form factor case that works with an ATX motherboard and a regular ATX power supply.

Going for a small HTPC usually means that you need to spend more for SFF-specific parts, such as the motherboard and power supply. This also means you need to compromise with cooling since you’ll have limited choices.

Luckily, that’s not the case with the Meshroom S. You can use regular computer parts including two 3.5-inch hard drives. Space is also abundant if you want to have seven 2.5-inch drives in your system.

The mesh panels provide excellent cooling. You can also use a 280mm all-in-one liquid cooler or go all out with a custom loop.

Graphics card support is great too since you can use cards that are four slots thick and up to 336mm in length.

There are different configurations for the Meshroom S depending on the parts that you plan to use. But if you want to stick with ATX parts, you need to purchase the needed PCIe riser cable.

The Specs

  • Colors:  Charcoal Black, Peacock Blue, Sage Green, Fossil Grey, Fusion Yellow
  • I/O:  2 x USB Type-A
  • Power Supply:  SFX or ATX
  • Motherboard:  mini-ITX, mATX, or ATX
  • Graphics Card:  Up to 342mm in length
  • Liquid Cooling Support:  Yes

What’s in the Box?

  • Case
  • 1 x PCIe riser cable
  • 1 x HDMI 2.0 cable

Stuff I like

  • Excellent Design
  • Great ventilation all around
  • Standard parts support

Stuff I like less

  • Tight clearance on some part combinations
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars

The Bottomline

Choosing the best HTPC case depends on the type of HTPC you’re building. There are cases for gamers and there are also options for basic HTPC cases for APU builds.

It’s all about compromises too since you have to prioritize one aspect over another, such as cooling oversize or size over GPU compatibility.

Ultimately, the choice is yours. The options mentioned above are the ones worth considering since they provide great features for their price.

Feel free to let us know in the comment section if you have another case in mind. Have fun building!

Aim is a tech and gaming content writer who loves playing Apex Legends, Valorant, and Dota 2. He also plays casual games such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons and Pokemon titles on his Nintendo Switch too. He also builds gaming computers and does tech troubleshooting on the side.

This post was last updated on 2022-12-11 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.


Helpful? Sign up and get more interesting posts like this. No Spam.

Get access to insights, deals, competitions and giveaways. Unsubscribe anytime.

* indicates required

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.

Scroll to Top