Thermaltake Armor A30 Mini Tower Case Evaluation

Thermaltake seems to be adding new models to its extensive range almost every week, and we have one of their latest models for review. Announced last month, the Armor A30 is the eighth member of the Armor family and features one of the most aggressive designs we've seen on a compact chassis.

Most mini towers like the Lian Li Mini Q PC-V354 are said to be designed for both gaming and HTPC, but the Thermaltake Armor A30 doesn't make such a promise. Instead, it is exclusively a gaming chassis that was developed for LAN partygoers.

If your home theater setup doesn't look like something out of the bat den, the Armor A30 will stick out like a sore thumb. The case has a unique "bulletproof" armor design in which many straight edges are mixed with metal grille elements. The end result is a bold looking little chassis.

Thermaltake believes this design will appeal to gamers and enthusiasts. Personally, I prefer the subtle lines of the Mini Q PC-V354, but then again, I'm not a hardcore gamer. We believe gamers will be drawn to the Armor A30's almost shoebox-size design, which can accommodate high-end hardware like the AMD Radeon HD 5970, today's largest consumer graphics card.

Case weight also plays a role in how you can move your PC comfortably. While the Armor A30 is slightly heavier than we expected at 14.7 pounds, it's still a lot lighter than most medium and full tower chassis. For example, the A90 armor weighs 22% more while the armor + is two and a half times heavier.

The Armor A30's offering becomes even more compelling when you consider how many high-performance microATX motherboards are available today that support high-end Core i5, Core i7, and Phenom II X6 processors. Continue reading.

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