When you think that innovation in Computer chassis has ended, a designer sitting in some part of the world comes up with a new idea to get everyone spending bucks again. As technical experts, we put our best efforts to give our readers unique and unconventional product reviews. We thought we should introduce you to the horizontal PC case world. Evolution in the usage of technology has made desktop computers necessary in every household. Horizontal computers are more comfortable to build and aesthetically look pleasing in a room environment. The clean look and ample space inside the chassis will allow you to install high-end computer parts with ease. Horizontal PCs are server friendly, and we will try to include products that support rack mounting.
Every horizontal PC case may not essentially be restricted to being set horizontally; some PC cases allow the chassis to be placed horizontally or vertically, depending on the user. The majority of the housings in our list are for space-saving with high performance. In contrast, we have featured some chassis strictly designed to minimize the footprint on your desktop. We have carefully selected cases with good airflow, sufficient clearances for high-end components, strong material, value-added features, high connectivity on the front panel, and adequate space to allow cable management. We want your friends and family to come over and drool over the tech you own. We want you to possess a product that looks top-notch and performs like a beast, but first, let’s inform you about the essential tips before shopping:
Quick Shopping Tips:
Orientation: Some chassis allows the PC case to be placed horizontally or vertically on your desktop, while others support one direction, so be sure to select the one you desire.
Lightning: One of the most attractive value-added features is RGB lighting. They are sometimes capable of sync with the motherboard, while some are operated with a separate controller. Look for the one that is easy for you to manage.
Clearances: CPU, GPU, and PSU clearances are essential, so we recommend that you first select the PC configuration and then look for compatible clearances. If you already own components, check to see if they fit within the clearance a case offers.
Front Panel: The presence of the latest gen of USB port, headphone jack, mic, power button, and reset button might be significant to some users, so be sure you get the desired features on the front panel of your selected horizontal PC case.
Horizontal PC Cases at a glance:
- Cooler Master HAF XB EVO
- SilverStone Technology GD09B
- Thermaltake Core P5 V2
- Thermaltake Core G3
- SilverStone GD08
- Antec VSK2000
- SilverStone ML04
- Fractal Design Node 202
The Horizontal PC Cases You Can Buy Today
Cooler Master HAF XB EVO
Best Overall Horizontal PC Case
Brand: Cooler Master | Case Form Factor: Horizontal Full Size | Case Material: Steel + Polymer + mesh front bezel | Motherboard Support: ATX, Micro ATX, Mini ITX | Drive Bay: 2+4+4 | Expansion Slots: 7 | GPU Clearance: 334mm | CPU Clearance: 180mm | PSU Clearance: 180mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 18.1 pounds | Dimensions: 16.7 x 17.4 x 13 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Excellent Airflow with ample space for fans
✓ Front panel with USB 3.0 and HD Audio Support
✓ Gaming and Overclocking suitable chassis clearances
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ Hot-swap bay and motherboard plate fragile
✗ Airfilter and RGB not included with the package
If you are a gamer, an overclocker, or just a tech geek that wants a test bench that can take loads of constant plugging and unplug of hardware components, then Cooler Master HAF XB EVO is built for you. The airflow through the case is specifically designed for overclockers. It comes preinstalled with two 120mm XtraFlo fans on the front running at 1200RPM with 17dBA noise. If you are a hardcore overclocker, then there is space for 120mm fan installation on the back and the top, or you can replace the two 120mm pre-installed fans with two 140mm fans.
The horizontal chassis, despite being easy to handle, carry, and assemble, its compact size has its drawbacks. This chassis is meant for overclocking, but there is no space for a liquid reservoir and a 420mm radiator. You cannot install a distribution block due to tight space, and RGB lighting is not included in the package. The chassis is marketed as a test bench alternative, but the hot-swap bay and motherboard tray are fragile. It’s suitable for testing GPUs and RAMs, while you will not find it handy to frequently replace motherboards as cable management would be a difficult thing to handle.
The removable motherboard tray is handy, and two dock bays for storage drives makes hardware upgradation a breeze. This chassis can easily fit a 331mm Nvidia RTX 3090 Ti, the best GPU available in the market. We believe that it’s the best overall horizontal PC case. Being a horizontal chassis, the problems of GPU sagging or PCIe cards sagging is long gone ensuring long-lasting components and no damage caused by creep. Latest gaming with high-end air-based CPU coolers will require significant CPU clearance. Heat dissipators like the 165 mm height Noctua NH-D15 need considerable space over the CPU; this chassis 180mm clearance to accommodate such tech.
SilverStone Technology GD09B
Best Runner-Up Horizontal PC Case
Brand: SilverStone Technology | Case Form Factor: Horizontal Mini ITX | Case Material: Plastic front panel with faux aluminum finish +0.8mm steel body | Motherboard Support: ATX, Micro-ATX, SSI-CEB | Drive Bay: 1+2+1 | Expansion Slots: 7+1 | GPU Clearance: 310mm | CPU Clearance: 138mm | PSU Clearance: 170mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 9.26 pounds | Dimensions: 17.32 x 14.09 x 6.69 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Enough clearance for GPU and PSU
✓ Compact with brushed metal aesthetics
✓ A filtered Air Positive Pressure to avoid dust accumulation
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No liquid cooling radiator support
✗ Only one fan included inbox for the price
Assuming you are into computer systems compact in size and yet get the job done acting as a small entertainment system or a mid-range gaming PC, Silverstone has a solution. The chassis that ensures all your hardware fits in confined space conveniently is SilverStone Technology GD09B. We consider it as the best runner-up horizontal PC case. A GPU like the Nvidia’s RTX 3080 can comfortably fit into the enclosure and boost the fps for mesmerizing graphics. You can also fit a Noctua NHC14s with ease with no height limitation, but any higher air-based cooler won’t fit.
The case will be an excellent replacement for your home theater system, but it cannot be used as a high-end gaming PC. The limitation is not having space for any liquid cooling radiator and enough clearance for a high-end CPU air-based cooler to fit in. The case comes with only one 120mm cooling fan, which is not enough for modern-day gaming PCs. If you are planning to overclock on this chassis, then you will be limited to small headspace. The chassis supports 7+1 expansion slots, which is more than enough for an ATX motherboard in a confined space. Being an HTPC case cable management is a bit tricky.
The company has included a filter to keep the dust-out. SilverStone has used positive pressure to allow dust or any other possible contamination outside the chassis, including filters. It reduces maintenance and improves component life. The front panel comes with a Type-C USB, which has become necessary for any modern-day computer PC case. The USB 3.0 port has also been included for peripheral connections. There is a separate vent for the GPU to dissipate heat efficiently and perform under OC conditions.
Thermaltake Core P5 V2
Best Premium Horizontal Case
Brand: Thermaltake | Case Form Factor: Mid Tower | Case Material: SGCC | Motherboard Support: ATX, Micro ATX, Mini ITX | Drive Bay: Two 3.5”/2.5” | Expansion Slots: 8 | GPU Clearance: 320mm | CPU Clearance: 180mm | PSU Clearance: 200mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 39.9 pounds | Dimensions: 23.9 x 13.1 x 22.4 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Supports extended 480mm radiator
✓ Fascinating Aesthetics with 5mm Clear Glass
✓ Excellent material quality with wall mounting capability
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No USB Type-C on the front panel
✗ No space for optical drive installation
Gamers and programmers who want to flaunt their rig with zero hesitation to expose their rig’s internal components, then Thermaltake Core P5 V2 has everything you can ask. The orientation of this case is not limited to being a horizontal PC case. Tilt the case utilize the two-way vertical GPU mounting, and you are good to go. It’s all in one exquisite beauty built to mesmerize their owners and guests. The chassis is an open frame design installed with a 5mm tempered glass side window. We believe this is the best premium horizontal case.
This chassis has everything an expert modder can wish for, but it could give beginners a headache. The front instruction manual is difficult to grasp. We recommend YouTube tutorials for beginners. The front panel is missing a Type-C USB port, slowly gaining popularity and becoming essential shortly. If you still use optical drives, be sure that this horizontal PC case does not support their installation. The open-frame design cannot restrict noise level, and dust is an unavoidable consequence of using this design.
Any latest game has no chance of lagging with high-end components installed in this chassis. It can house a great 480mm radiator with a liquid reservoir to boost your CPU to the maximum possible frequency, and the GPU has no restriction to airflow, thus performing best under OC condition. The case comes with four USB 3.0 ports for fast data transfer and HD audio connection. The ability to mount your chassis onto the wall is an added feature that can be used as a home improvement aspect. The customization level is bonkers; liquid tubes can be bent and placed as per liking to give an exclusive look.
Thermaltake Core G3
Best Slim Horizontal PC Case
Brand: Thermaltake | Case Form Factor: Slim ATX | Case Material: SPCC | Motherboard Support: ATX / Micro ATX / Mini ITX | Drive Bay: 2 | Expansion Slots: 2 | GPU Clearance: 310mm | CPU Clearance: 110mm | PSU Clearance: 130mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 9.3 pounds | Dimensions: 17.9 x 14.6 x 5.5 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Two pre-installed 120mm fans
✓ Offers Two-Way placement layout
✓ 4K virtual reality (VR) gaming support
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ Hard to manage cables
✗ No built-in RGB function
Having options is never wrong. Thermaltake Core G3 gives you the chance to place it horizontally or vertically as per your preference. It looks a lot better horizontally, with massive space being a slim ATX horizontal PC case. The chassis has enough perforated sheets to allow a high airflow rate over the components installed inside the chassis. Customizable water cooling kits can give this chassis a whole new look. The case can be easily kept clean with plenty of dust filters included in the package. The chassis comes with a PCI-e riser cable and removable dust filters.
This chassis is designed for people who are considering buying a slim horizontal PC case. The chassis is blunt looking with no RGB included. The cable management is a bit tricky as there is no dual-chamber set up to allow the cables to go around the back and hideaway with rubber grommets. The box is too narrow, so you cannot mount the GPU at a right angle to the motherboard; you will have to use a riser cable with your GPU and mount it parallel to the motherboard. You are posing a limit for heat transfer and liquid cooling for GPU. The windows are acrylic instead of glass; this makes it a scratch magnet.
The support for a 240mm radiator makes it an attractive deal for gamers looking to overclock their CPU or GPU to extract the maximum potential from their latest generation processor. The front panel offers full connectivity with four USB ports and HD audio jacks. It comes with two 120mm pre-installed fans on the chassis’s front to allow maximum cooling capacity. Indeed, the most compact ATX case that the market has to offer with flexibility. The decent-sized window allows your eye-catching hardware to fascinate your system. Considering our list of reviews, we believe that the case is the best slim horizontal PC case.
Best E-ATX Horizontal Case
Brand: SilverStone Technology | Case Form Factor: Horizontal | Case Material: Aluminum front panel, SECC body | Motherboard Support: E-ATX / ATX / Micro-ATX / SSI-EEB / SSI-CEB | Drive Bay: 2+8+2 | Expansion Slots: 7+1 | GPU Clearance: 345mm | CPU Clearance: 138mm | PSU Clearance: 220mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 15.4 pounds | Dimensions: 16.73 x 17.32 x 6.89 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Removable fan filters on left and right
✓ Smallest design with rack mounting option
✓ Two hot-swappable drive bays and USB 3.0 ports on the front
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No fan at the front side
✗ No screwless design incorporation
SilverStone has pushed their design towards server capability. SilverStone GD08 a horizontal PC case with the ability to house two processor-based server motherboards, i.e., the SSI-EEB and SSI-CEB. It is an excellent choice for professionals who want to create content with a high-end processing power for video editing or graphics work. The expansion cards have a substantial space of 345mm, allowing the installation of massive GPU sizes available in the market. The chassis comes with removable case filters on all openings of the computer case. Two External 3.5" hot-swap bays are an attractive option at this price.
The chassis is spacious with lots of room for experimentation, yet the cable management is difficult for a cleaned-up interior. The SSI-EEB compatibility is mentioned for this chassis; it has ample space to include an E-ATX motherboard, but it’s still tricky to fit an SSI-EEB motherboard. The reliability and long term operation design makes it a bit expensive. If you are a streamer, we would recommend you go for this chassis.
The brushed aluminum metal on the front is as rigid as a PC can get. It is suitable for data centers as well. A simple removal of case feet and installing a standard RA02 handle with four screws will let you install your PC into the rack. The positive pressure ensures that the chassis does not build up dust over time, and the equipment operates reliably as a server PC should. It can possess a 7+1 expansion card at the back and a two USB 3.0 Type-A connection on the front, which is essential to building a high-end PC. This chassis is built for reliability in a small package, and we believe it’s the best E-ATX horizontal case in the market.
Best Budget Horizontal PC Case
Brand: Antec | Case Form Factor: Micro-ATX | Case Material: Sheet Metal | Motherboard Support: Micro-ATX / Mini-ITX | Drive Bay: 1+1+1 | Expansion Slots: 4 | GPU Clearance: 200mm | CPU Clearance: 65mm | PSU Clearance: PSX only | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 5.28 pounds | Dimensions: 18.6 x 15.9 x 7 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Optical drive included
✓ Enough space for HTPC components
✓ Aesthetically pleasing and compact footprint
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No pre-installed power supply
✗ No support for the latest GPU and high-end coolers
This PC Case is also an addition to the list because of the vertical and horizontal orientation options. The chassis comes with an included base to allow vertical operation. We consider Antec VSK2000 as the best budget horizontal PC case. The chassis is compact and suitable for desk work. It’s a simple design with a tool-less ODD/HDD housing system for fast installation. The computer can provide a bare essential capability for productive work by supporting motherboards of Micro-ATX and Mini-ITX size.
The small desk footprint is an excellent deal, but some things require special attention to such close quarters inside a chassis. Antec decided to go for a TFX PSU. It’s a rare form of power supply that is hard to replace and costly if it gets damaged. Using a motherboard that supports OC RAMs won’t be a wise choice for this chassis. The clearance is pretty low using a Micro-ATX motherboard with high profile rams is not possible. Some users had to trim some parts of the case to adjust. It also doesn’t have a filter, which can lead to dust accumulation with time.
This PC case, surprisingly with an SFF, has a slot for an optical drive, which is a rare sight for this form factor. The build quality is clean, and the material used is rigid to give the overall package a solid feel. The sharp edges inside the case are mild and would not cause a cut or lead to bleeding. The horizontal PC case lid is easy to release with the press of a button. The support for USB 3.0 on the front is amongst the latest tech you can own. This chassis can easily be used as an HTPC in your living room. A low profile CPU cooler will easily fit under the roof.
Best Horizontal Micro-ATX Case
Brand: SilverStone Technology | Case Form Factor: Horizontal Micro-ATX | Case Material: Aluminum front door and plastic front panel + steel body | Motherboard Support: Micro-ATX, Mini-DTX, Mini-ITX | Drive Bay: 1+2+1 | Expansion Slots: 4+1 | GPU Clearance: 74mm | CPU Clearance: 70mm | PSU Clearance: 140mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 11 pounds | Dimensions: 13.78 x 17.32 x 4.13 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Lockable front door and power button
✓ It offers perfect 350mm depth for HTPC
✓ LED indicator with adjustable brightness
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ Sharp edges inside the chassis
✗ No USB type-a port on the front panel
SilverStone has their specific touch to aesthetics that they add to all their products. The brushed metal looks on the front door usually made from aluminum. SilverStone ML04 is another compact functional and horizontal PC case that this company has to offer. The size is suitable for small tabletops and office work. This PC Case is the best horizontal Micro-ATX Case. You can also use it as an HTPC with enough power to keep your home theatre up and running smoothly. The chassis can house a Micro-ATX motherboard and is small.
The CPU clearance is small and will require a low profile cooler such as the Noctua NH-L9i. This feature is an added cost as some processors come with preinstalled coolers and usually have higher profiles. The GPU clearance is also low due to the tight corners SilverStone had to make for component adjustment in SFF. Users have reported that the light indicator on the front is too bright for a room set up and sometimes nonadjustable. The chassis supports PS2(ATX) supplies, but the wires are a bit tricky to handle.
Not many chassis include a USB Type-C connection, which is the requirement for modern peripherals, but this chassis has Type-C and Type-A connection with HD audio jacks. The support for up to four 80mm fans in this form factor is above all others. The front door and power button are lockable to avoid an operation, which helps kids around the house. LED light is bright, but it is adjustable to the desired value. The chassis comes with a magnetic filter on top to avoid dust.
Fractal Design Node 202
Best Horizontal Mini-ITX PC Case
Brand: Fractal Design | Case Form Factor: Mini Tower | Case Material: SPCC | Motherboard Support: Mini ITX | Drive Bay: 0+0+2 | Expansion Slots: 2 | GPU Clearance: 310mm | CPU Clearance: 56mm | PSU Clearance: 130mm | USB Version: 3.0 | Weight: 7.72 pounds | Dimensions: 13.07 x 14.84 x 3.46 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Provides dual-chamber setup
✓ SFX power supplies available
✓ Sleek, versatile, and elegant design
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No Built-in RGB
✗ No Ion SFX-L support
Fractal is known to give the most aesthetically pleasing computer PC cases. They are reasonably priced and well built. Fractal Design Node 202 is no exception to the fact, and it is the best horizontal Mini-ITX PC Case. The chassis supports PCIe 3.0 riser cards that can be made into a mid-range gaming PC with ease. Along with this, it offers enough airflow to draw away the heat produced by the components. The simple design can be placed vertically or horizontally. Horizontal placement makes a lot of sense.
There is no RGB on the chassis, and neither is any window to spot the inside hardware. You can save money by buying non-RGB components that are functional rather than aesthetic. Some people are not pleased with the logo being horizontal, but for this review, we think you wouldn’t mind placing your chassis horizontal as it’s meant to be that way. The filters are not easily accessible and require the dismantling of the chassis.
There are two USB 3.0 ports, and the dust filters have been strategically placed to avoid the accumulation of dust. The price is reasonable for any small gaming PC. The dual-chamber chassis allows heat transfer to be confined to specific chambers and keep the other components cool. It is helpful to have a high-end GPU or CPU that can cause heat transfer to each other during operation. The cable management is also relatively easy as fractal ensures premium cable management.
Chassis are essential to the aesthetics of your workplace, battle station, or gaming station. A horizontal PC case will not only make your tabletop look clean and minimalist, but the amount of power you can extract from some well-designed chassis is unparalleled.
If you are a mellow user and do not put your system under intense processing loads, then go for chassis compact and suitable for HTPC. Gamers should go for a relatively larger chassis with dual-chamber options for ease in cable management and efficient heat transfer. Filters are also critical to avoid dust accumulation. Some chassis offer positive pressure that allows improvement in dust accumulation.
If you live in a dusty environment, it’s better to have a chassis with easily accessible and replaceable filters. Connectivity is critical for peripherals to ensure that your chassis offers Type-C connectivity if you own equipment that uses this type of port. USB 3.0 can also improve your data transfer speeds, so a presence on the front panel provides easy and faster performance. Audio jack has equal importance HD audio jacks featured in some of our chassis to provide high-end sound. It’s utterly dependent on the requirement of the user. We hope you find the product you would like to pick for your smart PC installation.