|Lian-Li LanCool Dragon Lord PC-K56W-B Case|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by Hank Tolman - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Wednesday, 30 December 2009|
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Closer Look: LanCool Exterior
To begin, let's take a close look at the exterior of the LanCool PC-K56W case. The case is made of almost completely of steel, with is a plastic front face plate. The plate is easily removed to give the user access to the features located on the outside of the case, but under the front face plate. One of the things that LanCool removed with the DragonLord series is the use of a door on the front of the case. While the hinged door provided a way to lock the case and a nice place for cool designs, it also hindered access to the external I/O ports and the optical drives. Removing the door also very likely aided LanCool in their quest to lower prices on their cases while protecting other important features.
The external I/O port on the PC-K56W case is pretty simple. The top of the face plate contains the panel which includes two USB ports place side by side and HD Audio ports for headphones/speakers and a microphone. The power button and the reset button are also located along the top of the front panel, the power button being the larger of the two (obviously), located on the right side of the panel. The front panel is rather easy to remove, and you have to do so to pop out one of the vents for an optical drive as well.
At the bottom of the front panel of the PC-K56W, LanCool has placed their logo. It is really the only purely aesthetic feature of the front panel. There is a blue LED power light at the top of the panel, near the reset switch, but other than that, there are no lights, no other logos, nothing. The appearance of the case from the front is very plain. This could appeal to an office environment, or someplace that flashy lights and looks just wouldn't fit in. The case does appeal to the more visually minded with the windowed side panel, however. The PC-K56W doesn't have a side panel fan, or LEDs on the window, but the motherboard lighting shines through it and gives the case a nice gaming feel.
At the back of the PC-K56W, where you would expect the PSU to be mounted in most mid-tower cases, is another 120mm fan. The fan doesn't have a filter affixed to it, just pushes the air through the meshed metal backing of the case. That's not a huge deal, however, considering this fan is intended to push air out of the case rather than bring it in. The placement of the fan is very nice; it fits in near the CPU fan, and will help expel the hot air coming off the motherboard.
Just looking at the outside of the PC-K56W we can see that it provides a lot of features for its relatively low price. I really enjoy the bottom mounting of the PSU, which appears to be an increasingly more common feature. Also, the PC-K56W comes with two 120mm fans while many mid-tower cases come with only one, or none at all. Of course, the two fans that the PC-K56W comes with are the only two that the case can use. There is no further expansion for fans, which may cause cooling issues for an overclocker.