|Lian Li PC-T60 PitStop ATX Test Bench Chassis|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cases|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Thursday, 24 June 2010|
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Lian Li PC-T60 Installation
The design of the PITSTOP T60 means that assembling your rig and the case go hand-in-hand. Specifically, you'll need to install any 5.25" devices in their brackets before attaching the motherboard tray to the vertical supports, since you won't be able to easily reach their securing screws once the case is assembled.
And there are a lot of screws. These days, even "normal" computer cases are moving towards tool-less installation, but the PC-T60 ATX / Micro-ATX Test Bench uses screws for everything. Drives and the power supply mount with screws, and the motherboard screws down to ordinary standoffs, and the backs of expansion cards are secured with large thumbscrews. Lian Li's decision to go with "screws for everything" seems odd in a case whose intended purpose is to make swapping components quick and easy; but the only components you can easily swap out are the 3.5" devices: the mounting cage slides out of the chassis with the removal of two thumbscrews, and the drives in the case are also secure with thumbscrews. At least Lian Li includes extras for most screws.
The open design of the case makes installing the motherboard, power supply, and 3.5" drives a quick and simple process. But as I mentioned above, if you need to add or remove a 5.25" device, you'll need to remove the motherboard tray. This is simple to do since it's secured to the vertical supports by four thumbscrews, but if you're working with an assembled system, you'll have to go to the trouble of unplugging all the power and interface cables connected to your motherboard and video card first. Re-installing a populated motherboard tray with a heavy CPU cooler in the case is a little clumsy; I found it easiest to position the case on its side while re-installing the tray. Removing the motherboard would require removing the same 12 screws (for an ATX motherboard) you'd remove in any other case, although you could always just use enough screws to secure the board rather than putting in all 12. I found that using only the four corner screws worked well.
The 8-slot backplane is nice, offering room for triple-card SLI or CrossFireX systems, and provides a much more secure mount for heavy video cards than other test bench systems. This is especially important since the T60's integrated handle makes it easy to carry around one-handed.
Once you've installed components in your case, it'll look something like this:
This photo shows the motherboard tray mounted in the middle of its three possible positions. As I mentioned earlier in this review, I found the case much more stable with the motherboard moved forward, although the CPU cooler you use might preclude this. While the handle at the top of the case makes it easy and convenient to carry an assembled system, it's only 168mm above the motherboard tray. This isn't much: in contrast, a large tower case like the Cooler Master HAF 932 AMD Edition offers over 200mm of clearance between the motherboard tray and the side of the case. The T60's 168mm clearance is too low for even moderately-size CPU coolers like the Titan Fenrir, which just touches the case handle with the motherboard tray in its middle position.
You can of course remove the handle's four securing thumbscrews quickly, and the structural inegrity of the case isn't affected with the handle removed, but the case looks funny without it. The case has cutouts in the vertical supports just above the motherboard tray attachment points that make it pretty easy to carry even a loaded case with two hands.