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Lian-Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Dragon Case E-mail
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Written by Bruce Normann   
Tuesday, 25 May 2010
Table of Contents: Page Index
Lian-Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Dragon Case
Closer Look: Exterior
Detailed Exterior Features
Closer Look: Interior
Detailed Interior Features
Build Notes
Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Testing
Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Final Thoughts
Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Conclusion

Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Dragon Case Review

The Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R is a mid-size tower with a sleek black exterior, and some serious red highlights. That is until you get past the colossal dragon figure on the side panel and look through the clear window. Taking advantage of the full aluminum construction, Lian Li let the anodizing team loose on the interior with a bucket of red die, and the result is stunning. The case also comes fully outfitted with four red LED fans, two 120mm front and back, and two 140mm on top that enhance the red theme of the interior. Lian Li has never been shy about dressing up its signature products. They've produced some of the most original and striking PC gaming cases that I can remember. Unlike the wild show cars that are never meant to turn a wheel, these chassis get pushed right into the mainstream retail channels. Lucky us! Benchmark Reviews is pleased to review this special AMD edition of the Lian Li PC-P50 series.

Special attention has been focused on the tool-free features of the case, including an impressive PSU clamp that will hold the largest units much more securely than the usual four small screws on the back panel. The slick expansion card clamps are not only tool-free, they are artfully designed, as well. The HDD cage and removable drive trays have a flexible mounting arrangement that allows the case to easily accept the largest graphics cards on the market. Dual 140mm fans on the top surface effectively extract hot air from inside the case, aided by the rear fan, which is also an exhaust. The case is lightweight, at 6.6 kg, and would be suitable for transport to LAN parties, even without a handle to make it easy to carry.

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Many of the features of the PC-P50R aid in getting a full gaming system built quickly, or reconfigured with different components in a short amount of time. The cable management is simple, yet effective. The drive cage is easily removed from the front of the case, as are all nine drive bay covers, all without tools. The drive cage can also be slid forward without removing it completely, so you can move it out of the way without disconnecting any of the drives. This provides unparalleled access to an area of the case where most of the system cables pass through, which is usually one of the choke points in component installation. Enough about what I think for now, let's take a look at the actual features and specifications, direct from Lian Li.

Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Features

  • The cutting edge tool-less design is an important mission in 2009 Lian Li cases.
  • It is convenient for those who are building systems faster, or swapping out components often. For example when installing the 5.25" optical drive, it just slide the drive into the 5.25" bay, and close the mounting bar to secure the optical drive, it is as simple as that not only for optical drive but also for:
  • The installation of the hard disk is very easy, and tool-less. It is only required to put the hard disk into the aluminum rack and closing it with special designed clip, then, slide it into HD cage. It is all secured with anti vibration rubber ring.
  • The installation of PCI add on card, it can be done as simply as open the aluminum arm holder, insert the add-on card to the motherboard slots, and close the aluminum arm holder. The additional rubber padding on the aluminum arm assists in gripping the card bracket and securing it firmly.
  • The new ARMORSUIT PC-P50R is special designed for the LAN party groups. It is a mid-tower case, but internally allows the latest graphics cards in combination with the best thermal dynamics. Again, all the internal installation can be done without tools, and is easily adjustable to optimize your hardware setup. Especially in the advent of adding in new graphics cards, or extra fans when adapting to various LAN party needs and environments.
  • ARMORSUIT PC-P50R uses large size cooling fans to remove the system heat faster and quieter as well as keeps the system more stable.
  • The both front and top cover are detachable without tool. It is just simply lift up cover then can be access for maintenance.
  • ARMORSUIT PC-P50R has no front door design; users can access the drive easier.
  • The fans on the top panel are mounted with Lian Li's new anti-vibration fan mounting system; the rubber ring grommet absorbs the vibration, keeping the case silent.
  • The ARMORSUIT PC-P50R new internal layout has the motherboard on top of the power supply, which creates more room for larger CPU cooler and easy access to the motherboard.
  • The new 5.25" bay equipped a tool-less mounting bar incorporates with rubber padding to holds the 5.25" device in position, secured, and absorbs vibration.
  • The aluminum PCI tool-less mounting module is equipped with a rubber pad which it is not only can hold the graphics card firmly, but also reduce noise as well as vibration while closing the gap.
  • The ARMORSUIT PC-P50R enhance Power Supply installation and support with rubber pads on to mounting clip, it is aligned as well as reduced vibrations, making power supply more secure and without scratching the power supply paint.
  • The power supply unit is at the bottom of the case. It can draw in cold air directly through the vent below the power supply. This cooler, fresh air will keep PS components cooler, stable and extend the PS life.
  • The intake fans are aligned with inlet holes on the bezels. These are equipped with air filters to stop the dust and keep the internals dust free and clean.
  • Special design for enthusiasts 2 water pipe inlets.
  • The solid main chassis was folded with 1.5mm thick aluminum sheeting to make a more sturdy structure which has less vibration.
  • There is an air filter at the base of the case to stop dust from entering the case. The filter is washable. The vents are specially designed to retard heat and fire crossover should a short circuit cause sparks and excessive heat within your system. This feature is designed to prevent the problem from spreading outside your case should the unlikely event occur with your components.

Lian Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Specifications

  • Color: Red
  • Material: Hard anodized aluminum
  • Dimensions: 210 x 495 x 490 mm(W, H, D)
  • Dimensions: 8.27 x 19.49 x 19.48 inch (W,H,D)
  • Net Weight: 6.6 kg / 15 lb
  • 5.25 inch drive bay (External): 9
  • 3.5 inch drive bay (External): 0
  • 3.5 inch drive bay (Internal): 3 ( using 6 x 5.25)
  • Motherboard Type: E-ATX, ATX, M-ATX
  • Motherboard Tray: Yes, Removable
  • System Fan (Front): 1 x 12cm LED Fan @1200 RPM
  • System Fan (Top): 2 x 14cm LED Fan @1000 RPM
  • System Fan (Rear): 1 x 12cm Fan @1500RPM
  • I/O Ports: USB 2.0 x 4; HD+AC97 Audio
  • Expansion Slots: PCI x 8

Lian-Li_Logo_250px.png

About the company: Lian Li

Lian Li Industrial Co., LTD was founded in 1983. We are the one of the largest and most reputable manufacturer of aluminum PC case in Taiwan. With over twenty years of experience in the computer products field, our dedicated team of engineers, production specialists and administrative staff provide the finest quality accessories available on the market.

In 1993, Lian-Li Introduced the new lines of computer hardware, including bracket (for case & interfaces), Mobile rack (for H.D.D.), mounting kit (for FDD & HDD), aluminum PC cases, IPC, external cases, server cases and more. We also provide OEM & ODM services, you are assured of designs that will meet your exact specifications, and innovative ideas in manufacturing that will give your products an essential market edge.

Our outstanding quality has earned us ISO 9001 certification for all of our products. In addition, we back up our quality assurance with a two-year guarantee on most of our products. R&D is one of the reasons why Lian Li is able to offer quality products to the market. Whether it is for OEM or ODM projects, our experienced mechanical and electrical engineers are capable of providing our customers with the best solutions in product design.



 

Comments 

 
# 5.25 drive brackets are terribleArt Woosley 2011-02-04 14:23
The Lian Li optical drive brackets are a poor sloppy design. The brackets come with the pins in the wrong location and the instructions say nothing about moving them. With a pliers, I was able to carefully dislodge the pins and relocate them in the correct alternate holes. This is Lian Li "tooless" design???? This is UNACCEPTABLE! Furthermore, the drives are NOT held firmly and required screws on the opposite side (bracket is only on one side). All the reviews pour over the cosmetics of Lian Li but the inside guts of the case are not very good.
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# No problem for me....BruceBruce 2011-02-04 16:22
I didn't remember having an issue, so I just pulled the case out and tried it again. N problems....... I actuall like how they have provided an option for the location of the retaining pins, but every ODD I've tried in it used the front set of holes. I don't know of any other cases that allow you to switch the pin location.

I admit the drive can wiggle a tiny bit when the OP Side screws are not used, but that's just cosmetic. The drive isn't going anywhere.

BTW, what drive wereyou installing that neede to use the rear set of pins?
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# RE: Lian-Li Armorsuit PC-P50R Dragon CaseArron Arntzen 2011-10-17 10:22
Hi Bruce
Having built numerous computers over the years, including about 40 Lian Li's for various clients, I would offer the following comments.
1) I have never, ever cut myself (or a wire) on a Lian Li - all the likely competitors should hang their heads in shame on this one. Blood sacrifices to the machine god are wearisome after a few hundred occasions.
2) Everything fits well - I have recently built 3 PC50 machines and their snap in 5.25 drives work well. Of course, showing my age here I guess, I still use the screws as well.
3) Using a gigabyte UD-7 motherboard (inbuilt passive air cooling), two gigabyte silent cell 5770 graphic cards and a Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler (quietest fan speed), 16Gb Kingston RAM, Corsair 950 watt non-modular PSU (less connections) in a non-airconditioned, bare brick environment in Australia, the client can sleep in the same room with the machine on. Further, I cannot hear it until I am literally at the keyboard. Highest temperature - AMD-1100BE CPU 48 Celsius, Intel i7-960 CPU (12 Gb RAM) 63 Celsius, case AMD - 58 Celsius, Intel - 61 Celsius, ambient - often over 30 Celsius. Yes, I checked it several times - the AMD with the Noctua runs at a lower temp than the case - even when she played Crysis at the top settings for a whole day... (the Intel was actually being built for a different client, however she tested it in the same room because she wanted to see if it was faster). Client's previous system - three quarter height steel tower (expensive, famous gamer brand) usin!
g the AMD CPU and AMD heatsink/fan. It sounded like a loosely mounted jet engine and ran over 10 Celsius hotter case temperature. Lian Li's don't resonate!
4) The plastic strap across the top of the 3.5 hard disk drives gave me a hot spot on a server system, so I removed it & went back to the screws - gamers beware... my only criticism of the PC-P50 may be disk threatening. The PC-P80 or PC-A77F are a much better, cooler cradle IMHO.
5) I am picking up another PC50 later today - this time a "dragon" - and will be placing more in less the same bits in it. Unless the fans are a lot noisier than the "black" case, it should be very close to silent.
6) This is being written on my workhorse - a (1999?) Lian Li PC62, my other is a (2009?) PC-P80 - which is quieter and cooler than either the PC-P50 or the PC62.
7) A very thorough review - well done.
Arron, Western Australia.
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# Good FeedbackBruce Bruce 2011-10-17 10:46
Thanks for the informative post, Arron. The more I work on some things, the less I'm willing to sacrifice on the basic quality of the thing. Features yes, quality no..... BTW, when I'm building for real, I also use the screws. I HATE having slightly crooked drives, with uneven gaps. The screws allow me to line up all the pieces and lock it all into place.

Thanks for sharing all this excellent info, based on real world experience. I'm curious how you detected the hot spot(s) on the drive. Thermal imaging, or low-level environmental reporting from the drive itself?

Thanks, Bruce.
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# Temperature measurementsArron Arntzen 2011-10-18 01:31
Hi Bruce

I sent the first email in because your review was so thorough - some gamer type hardware reviews are so poor I would not waste my time. I commend you on your approach, and wish there were more like you in your profession.
I share your view on quality vs features. Pity some coders out there clearly don't...
My digital "instant read" thermometer plus thermal sensing strips are my essential friends in these days of massive "so far over the top I am stunned" power consumption. The original pentium 100 CPU pulled 4 (well, 3.9 actually) watts average - count 'em, one hand. Last year an nvidia graphics card pulled nearly 1000 watts - scary or obscene?
Anyway, back to the PC-P50 - I intended to hammer it the next day, however after only two hours of reasonably hard use just getting a feel for the machine, the drive's sound changed a little. I measured 85 celsius under the strap, 67 near it, both readings where the disk platter would be spinning. A temperature variance of zero to +18C to zero in less than three inches across a high precision device spinning faster than an angle grinder - shudder. Clearly HDD internal frame warping and / or platter shattering is a no cost option. I repeated it with temperature strips the next day - 86 and 67C after two hours.
Result - bin the strap, use those old obsolete things called spare aluminium screws from another Lian Li case. FWIW, that strap is probably the only thing Lian Li have ever come up with that makes no sense at all to me - fashion over function I guess. Even the individual disk cradle runs noticeably warmer than the PC-P80 or PC-A77F's older, lighter and more ventilated "3 drives at a time predecessors".
Oh, and yes, aluminium screws do make a small difference, especially in aluminium frames, conducting heat away a little quicker as well as avoiding hot spots compared to their steel cousins. Screws and closing all gaps also prevents clients losing expensive software - like a Novell server 50 licence disk that disappeared for 4 years until we scrapped the previous assembler's machine ? a technician originally installed it and it had vanished when they needed to reinstall it ? it was between the CD drive and the hard disk, scratched beyond use and already replaced by a not happy insurance company.

More than enough for now, please keep up the good work.
Thanks for your feedback.
Arron.
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