Page 2 - Physical Look - Outside
The NZXT H710i mid-tower is the largest of the H-series. Other cases in the lineup include the H510 Elite and H210i; both of which we have reviewed towards the end of 2019. Like its predecessor, the NZXT H700i, one could reasonably make the assertion that the H710i is yet another computer case designed by someone with a ruler. Furthermore, you would be hard pressed to identify the evolutionary changes between the two if you were not an owner of both models. Its sleek lines and mesh edges has every thread of boring eliminated in my opinion, even though I missed the sharp red-on-black color coordination on my H700i. Unfortunately, NZXT did not have that one in stock when I requested the review unit, so I ended up with the Matte Black version. As its name suggests, the front panel is a matte black flat piece of steel consistent with the design theme; where mesh openings on the side provide ventilation for the three Aer F120 120mm intake fans in front.
Taking off the front panel will reveal a large washable magnetic dust filter to keep the nasty stuff out, which is something I appreciate. Meanwhile, a tinted full-sized tempered glass panel on the left side of the H710i provides a full, unobstructed view inside. The glass side panel attachment mechanism is improved on the new model. While its predecessor has the it held on by four thumbscrews, the H710i's glass side panel is held on by two ball-and-socket joints at the top and a pair of clips at the bottom. It is locked in by a tab secured by a captive thumbscrew at the back of the case. This is mostly a well-designed mechanism, but I found the captive thumbscrew and the tab to not release as easily as intended. That said, it feels secure yet relatively easy to use. The rest of the chassis is made out of quality steel panels.
Measuring in at 230mm width, 494mm depth, and 516mm height with the feet installed, the NZXT H710i's dimensions are about right for a mid-tower chassis. It tips the scales at 27 lbs, which is also in line with other cases of the same caliber. All in all, I found the design to be clean and unique looking at the same time. Our particular version is in Matte Black, but the colors Matte Black/Red and Matte White are also available. The NZXT H710i is the right balance between conservatism and design risk. If you want something that is visually appealing and does not look ridiculous, this chassis will fit the description of an eye candy for many people.
The NZXT H710i's front panel connectors are located on top like many new chassis. It sits fully exposed all the time, which is convenient, but keep a can of compressed air around to clean the dust out once in a while. The layout configuration is pretty standard. Starting from the left, we have one 3.5mm audio jack, one USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C port, two vertically oriented USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A ports, and a power button. The circular power button has an illuminated perimeter that glows steady white when turned on. A second white LED hidden inside on the left flashes when there is HDD activity. It is nice a USB Type-C port is finally added, but I wonder why they took out the dedicated 3.5mm microphone jack. A splitter is included if you want to use it though.
Meanwhile, the top panel is a solid piece of plastic, but has accommodation for up to three 120mm or two 140mm fans or a radiator of equivalent size. Traditionally, case designers install top mounted fans to efficiently draw heat away from the processor and other heat generating internal components. This makes a lot of sense, since heat rises, so we are only adhering to the natural laws of physics. Unfortunately, this is a two-way street, as it is also very easy to get a lot of dust in the system that way when it is turned off. Some users really like it, but personally, I never install fans in this area, so usually I will be complaining at this point if I see an unrestricted opening. NZXT cleverly created edges that curve inwards on the sides enclosed by a mesh grille for airflow on the H710i. This is a design continuation of the same ventilation design as the front air intake. An additional opening protected by an integrated grille at the back -- more on this later -- ensure the chassis design's impact on thermal performance is minimized. I like this design.
Painted black to match the rest of the chassis, the back of NZXT's H710i is pretty much standard for a case with a bottom mounted power supply bay. We can expectantly spot an included black colored Aer F140 140mm fan placed adjacent to the motherboard I/O backplate. Normally, you will only get a 120mm fan here, but the fatness really pays off. Much to our surprise, there are no radiator pipe openings, but I think external water cooling systems are practically non-existent nowadays. Instead, we have a vertical slit in the adjacent ventilated area to mount reservoirs for custom loop water coolers. The right side panel can be removed by pressing a quick-release button near the top. The release mechanism is designed such that the panel can be unlatched by pressing a button at the upper left corner at the back. I am a big fan of this design, as it is convenient, easy to use, and works flawlessly. You can also have a clearer view of the purple tab for unlatching the tempered glass panel.
Meanwhile, the ventilated plates enclosing the seven expansion card slots are also painted black, as shown in our photo above. The eighth one is missing for some reason, so those planning to install a dual slot graphics card at the bottom motherboard slot is out of luck. New to the H710i are two vertical slots for those looking to install their graphics card vertically.
Medium-sized plastic brackets with small rubber pads can be seen at the bottom of the NZXT H710i. The legs provide the chassis about 2 cm rise over the surface it resides on. For those who have custom loop water cooling in their systems, the bottom panel has four additional slits for you to attach your equipment. The washable fan filter for the power supply intake fan can be seen in our photo above, which can be pulled out at the back for easy cleaning.
Overall, the NZXT H710i ATX case is one of the most solid cases I have seen with regards to build quality. All the panels fit together extremely well with minimal panel gaps -- in fact, it is pretty darn close to perfection in refinement. With that out of the way, nothing feels flimsy or cheap. Sharp edges are out of the question. The amount of attention to detail is very noticeable. Too bad there is no sound insulation material anywhere, but at no point did I doubt the manufacturing quality of this product. The H710i's small improvements over its predecessor are all welcomed changes so far.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Installation and Conclusion