Antec ISK-600m Micro ATX Case
This is a small form factor 'cube' style case that is well built, contains good ventilation and has a decent amount of room for expansion and lab flexability. In its stock form it's quiet and all the LEDs inside can be disconnected. This allows the system to be placed in home locations where bright blue LEDs and 'flashing lights' would be undesirable. It's also tall enough to accomodate most tower style CPU coolers which means it can be one of the quietest, most flexible small cases for a lab build where being discrete is essential. Note: This is the bigger brother of the less flexible ISK-600 (which only takes Mini-ITX, costs roughly the same, and is a little less flexible).
- Small (29 x 27.3 x 34cm)
- Supports Micro-ATX motherboards and PSUs
- Optical bay available
- 3 x 3.5" drive bays
- 3+1 x 2.5" drive bays
- 4 x Expansion slots
Reasons To Consider For Your Lab
This case is very flexible and is most suitable for a home lab environment down so the following usefull features:
- Cheap: The case can be had for less than £50 at time of publication.
- M-ATX: Takes a common, small form factor allowing the use of inexpensive, common, proven parts with which to build the system.
- Flexible: Can be reourposed as a Media PC, Gaming Rig or whatever should you ever decide to change the lab.
- Detachable LEDs: You dont have to connect the LEDs for Power or access allowing placement in living room environments
- Quiet: included fans are silent under normal operation and the case is just big enough to all the instillation of Tower CPU coolers. Essentiall inaudible under load from 1m away in this configuration.
- Expansion slots: A BIG benifit of using a cube case is the PCIe expansion slots. This allows you the freedom to add multiple Network cards to ESXi or play about with more interesting stuff like Infiniband or even Nvidia GPUs for a View lab.,
- VSAN Capable: you've got a lot of internal HDD bays for 3.5" or 2.5" drives. Enough to have a small VSAN in a 'not faked' configuration.
- Desktop CPU Support: Will support any desktop CPU so you benifit from high performance without paying for the mobile 'tax'.
It's a relativly simple case to get a hold of. In the UK it can be purchased from Scan (usually the cheapest) or eBay (beware shipping charges). It's still a current model so thre should be no issues getting hold of one.