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Bitfenix Neos review

Andrew Unsworth
4 Nov 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
30
inc VAT

The Neos is a bargain case that’s ideal for budget-to-mid-range gaming or home office builds

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Specifications

Case type: ATX, Motherboard compatibility: ATX, microATX, Mini-ITX, Supplied fans: 1x 120mm, Max 3 1/2in drive bays: 3, Max 5 1/4in drive bays: 2, Size: 185x429x470mm, Weight: 6kg, Warranty: one-year RTB

Even though it’s fairly compact, the Bitfenix Neos can accommodate an ATX motherboard, three 2.5in drives, three 3.5in drives and two external 5.25in drives. It’s also rather pretty despite its cheap price, and it can be bought in many different colour configurations. Our review sample is mostly black, save for the front panel which is comprised of a red mesh, for example.

The Neos is also largely tool-free. External 5.25in drives can be slid into the case and locked in place, while 3.5in mechanical drives can simply be pressed into a drive rail to be held in place by four studs. Sadly, 2.5in drives must be screwed in position. The drive bays are conveniently side-facing, and the drive rails can be pinched out; there’s no need to unscrew them.

All this means that the Bitfenix Neos is easy to use and work in. It’s not perfect, however, as our SilverStone Argon AR03 air cooler was slightly too tall for the Neos, which meant there was a slight bump in the side panel when we put it back on. It’s something you could live with, but we think you’d be better off using a stock Intel or AMD cooler with the Neos, or a low-profile third-party cooler. There are also only a few millimetres between an installed power supply and an ATX motherboard, which could make working with and connecting things to a motherboard a bit awkward. We found it a bit difficult to connect certain things to that side of the board, but it won’t be a problem if you only plan on installing your board in the Neos once. The Neos only takes standard PS2 ATX power supplies, but that suits the type of fairly modest build for which the Neos is intended.

Of course, a PC case at this price will have some annoyances, and the Neos has cheap feeling power and reset buttons on the top panel, for example. There’s also too much flex in the 5.25in drive bay covers on the front panel, which means they’re easily bent out of shape if you accidentally pop them out. A further annoyance is that to install 5.25in drives, you must remove two further internal covers that are located just before the external drive bay covers, and this requires the use of force because they’re attached to the case itself. We really didn’t like the way the blanks for the PCI slots were also attached to the case either, as it made them hard to remove with a motherboard installed. We’d much prefer to have separate blanks that must be unscrewed to be removed, even if such things add a couple more pounds to the Neos’s price.

Although there are three mounting points for 120mm fans, only one is supplied with the case and this acts as a rear exhaust. The other two mounts are located just behind the front panel. There’s room for a graphics card up to around 300mm in the first card slot, but only up to around 270mm in any other slot.

The Bitfenix Neos is a bargain PC case for a modest PC build, but we weren’t keen on flimsy drive bay covers, disposable expansion port blanks and cheap-feeling power and reset buttons. If you have limited funds available, however, or simply don’t want to spend more than you must, the fairly attractive Bitfenix Neos is a good choice. 

Hardware
USB ports1
USB3 ports1
eSATA ports0
Front panel extras1x 3.5mm headphone jack, 1x 3.5mm microphone jack
Case typeATX
Motherboard compatibilityATX, microATX, Mini-ITX
Fan mounts3x 120mm
Supplied fans1x 120mm
Max 2 1/2in drive bays3
Max 3 1/2in drive bays3
Max 5 1/4in drive bays2
Other drive baysNone
Max graphics card length300mm
Size185x429x470mm
Weight6kg
Buying information
Price including VAT£30
Warrantyone-year RTB
Supplierwww.overclockers.co.uk
Detailswww.bitfenix.com
Part codeBFC-NEO-100-KKXSK-RPÂ

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