The best PC cases 2021: Stylish and functional boxes for your next gaming rig

© Provided by GamesRadar Razer Tomahawk

The best PC cases are those that strike that essential balance between functionality and style. It’s important to keep those core components nice and cool with effective airflow to ensure that they perform at their best at all times – no one wants high idle temps because you’ve built in a cramped space. 

On that note, there are a few things to consider when buying your next PC case, most notably, the size. There are four main variants of PC cases that correspond to different motherboard sizes for a form factor that suits your use best: SFF, Mini-Tower, Mid Tower, and Full Tower – with the latter two options being the most popular for the majority of PC gamers. 

Of course, a well-ventilated gaming PC case is just the start of things, think of it as the shell that protects all the other vital parts. For what to look for next, ensure you’re clued up on the best CPU for gaming as well as the best RAM for gaming and the best graphics cards for gaming so that you can be sure you’ve got a stellar rig that will last the ages. 

Building a gaming PC in 2021 is a very different proposition from years prior, and NZXT seems to agree with its line of understated cases that still feature RGB lighting as well as modern innovations such as USB-C and vertical GPU mounting for an encompassing next-gen shell for your build. 

Tempered glass is going to be hit and miss for some people, but personally, we found that the commitment to aesthetics here really works in the case’s favour without compromising the airflow, especially with a case as spacious as this. The included cable-routing kit allows for easy management so it will look just as good as it performs at a competitive price for its size. 

Let’s be real, when you want to make a high-end gaming rig, you’re going to need some serious space. Fortunately, this particular Full Tower is comparatively massive with more than enough space – with its modular nature – to build as insane of a battle station as your money – or imagination – can come up with. 

Hyperbole aside, the tool-free drive bay cages are a genuine game-changer, meaning that you can hot-swap storage drives to suit your usage without having to mess around with unscrewing things, so you won’t have to fret about buying another SSD or HDD again. 

Razer has been making sleek gaming laptops and peripherals for a long time, and the company has channelled its knowledge – and lighting – into this Mid Tower gaming PC case which features some neat inclusions, most notably the built-in cable management and forwards opening doors for easy building. 

That’s not to mention the Chroma lightning – which some people may find excessive – though it’s only underneath as opposed to be being hooked up to any included fans and what have you. Even better is the support for a a 360mm radiator size, so you can keep high-end CPUs ice-cold with ease. 

If there’s one thing to know about Cooler Master, it’s that the company always tends to live up to its name, and that’s due to its spacious design which makes it prime real estate for building into as you go. 

Those dual 200mm ARGB fans aren’t going to be everyone’s proverbial cup of tea, but they are bound to keep your rig chilled – and with easy fan controls – you can be sure that you can tailor the speeds easily to keep those temps down at all times. Personally, we’re fans of the angular, thick tank-like shell, too.

There’s no accounting for taste – of course – but this has to be one of the cleanest looking gaming PC cases we’ve seen in a long time. As with other NZXT cases in our list, this model is built with convenience in mind – especially the included cable routing kit complete with pre-installed straps and channels – so you can get things up and running without breaking out so many damn cable ties. 

Bringing its looks back into the equation, this is a truly next-generation looking case with modern sensibilities in mind with regards to the front ports that, while a little sparse, include USB-C for an elegant solution for controllers, external SSDs/HDDs, and more. 

There’s no reason why a high-quality gaming PC case should cost a crazy amount of money. MSI seems to agree with its line of MAG Series cases, with the 100R being great for any budget builder ensuring that your money can be better spent on core components without conceding on class. 

The concessions made to keep the costs low aren’t likely to be a deal-breaker – the lack of support for 360mm radiators and only two drive bays comes to mind, but if these omissions don’t matter much to you, then this is still a great case for the money. 

If you’ve wanted to build something a little smaller than usual, but never knew of any high-quality, but affordable, Micro-ATX cases for gaming PCs, then the MasterBox Q300L could have the missing piece of the puzzle to complete your setup in style. 

One of the most exciting elements about this particular PC case is how the I/O can be orientated either horizontally or vertically and in six different places on the box, meaning you can set it up to your preference. What’s more, the 28mm of extra routing space is sure to allow for tidy cable management between the SATA III bay and the side panel.

Now that you’ve had a chance to see some fantastic gaming PC cases, ensure that you’ve got your peripherals covered with our picks for the best gaming keyboards as well as the best gaming mouse and the best gaming monitors – that way you’ll be set to have a behemoth of a battle station in no time! 

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