By: Jonathan Kwan
January 25, 2013
For that two decade or so I have spent living on this planet, there are two things I have learned over the years: One is to never eat at a Chinese restaurant that has an English only menu; the other being never to buy electronic devices with a translated Chinese phonetic name. A few years ago, we were visiting Ottawa, and came upon this restaurant sporting Shanghainese food. When we went inside, the only thing in Chinese were the decorations -- the menu was all English, the waiter could not understand Chinese, and needless to say, the food tastes like crap. Recently, my friend and I walked into a place that serves 'authentic Beijing cuisine'. Three things rang a bell when we walked in: Every customer there was not Chinese, the menu was all English, and all that was available were stuff like sweet and sour pork. All I can say is the best dish I had that evening was the bowl of rice in front of me. In the same way, it is probably a bad idea to buy a computer branded Ching Chong Ling Long Ting Tong, except, well, there are exceptions. For many years, Taiwanese manufacturer Lian Li consistently made the best aluminum cases in the market. Notice I am not saying one of the best, I am saying, the best. With brilliant material craftsmanship, unmatched manufacturing quality, peerless refinement and attention to detail, Lian Li is every true enthusiast's desire. Today, we will take a look at one of their latest chassis, the PC-B12. Is this a perfect combination of silence and classic Lian Li quality? Read on to find out!
Just like the Lian Li PC-Z60, our review unit of the Lian Li PC-B12 ATX computer case arrived in its retail box without any additional shipping material from one of the company's distributors in California, USA. From what we have seen in the past, every chassis retail boxes are built with shipping in mind, and the PC-B12's is no exception. Using UPS Standard, everything was handled appropriately, and it landed on our doorstep here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada in absolutely pristine condition. As far as the exterior look of the retail packaging is concerned, it is nothing out of the ordinary; it gets the job done right, and that is exactly what I am looking for. Actually, this it is the same deal as the company's entire product lineup for the last few years, so this is definitely what we have been expecting. With Lian Li's branding and chassis model number prominently displayed across the top, profile view of the PC-B12 in the middle, and an array of feature highlights along the right, everything is as straightforward as it can get. Further information such as the color and specifications of the case can be found on various sides of the box. There is no question that you will know exactly what to expect if you ever see this at your favorite local retail computer store.
Clipped between two large Styrofoam brackets at the top and bottom is the Lian Li PC-B12 aluminum computer case. The accessories are placed inside the case, just like every single one I have reviewed in the past. A large plastic bag is deemed sufficient to prevent its aluminum surfaces from being scratched during transport. As you can see in our photo above, our particular unit is black in color. This is the only color the PC-B12 is available in, and to be absolutely honest with you, I would not have wanted it any other way -- maybe unless it is red, haha.
Before we move on, let's take a look at the specifications of Lian Li's PC-B12 mid-tower, as obtained from the manufacturer's website:
Case Type: Mid tower chassis
Dimensions: (W) 210mm x (H) 472mm x (D) 498mm
Front bezel Material: Aluminum
Side Panel: Aluminum
Body Material: Aluminum
Net Weight: 6.4KG
5.25" drive bay (External): 2
3.5" drive bay (External): None
HDD bay: 3.5-Inch HDD x3 (Optional hotswap ) / 2.5-Inch HDD x1
Expansion Slot: 8
System Fan (Front): 140mm Fan x2
System Fan (Top): None
System Fan (Rear): 120mm Fan x1
I/O Ports: USB 3.0 x2 / HD Audio
Maximum Compatibility: VGA Card length: 360mm; PSU length: 240mm; CPU cooler height: 160mm
Package Dimensions: (W) 532mm x (H) 568mm x (D) 266mm
Gross Weight: 8.2KG