NZXT Guardian Black

Aron Schatz
July 13, 2004
NZXT Guardian Black
The Guardian is NZXT first case design. In a market that is swamped with premodded cases, can NZXT stand out and be good enough to earn your hard earned money? Let's find out.
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<a href="">NZXT</a> is one of the newest in the premodded case field. With so many different competing manufactures, NZXT will have to stand out of the crowd for people to even consider purchasing their cases. Their first case is on the review bench today; The Guardian.

<B>The Case</B>:

<center>Case 1</center>

This case looks amazing in black and red. Both are my favorite colors. In the first 2.5 years of the site, the color scheme was red and black. Anyway, the Guardian has a retro look to it. It looks like a shield of armor. The front shiny part is metallic paint on plastic. Some people like a totally metal case, but the plastic is lighter and easier to handle.

<center>Front Shot</center>

The front of the case is very unique looking. I've never seen a design that resembles this one. NZXT has done a great job to set themselves apart on their very first case. The front of the case also has ports for USB on the bottom left and sound on the bottom right. The clear plastic part houses a few LEDs that really make the case shine when you turn it on. We'll get to that later.

<center>Front Bolt</center>

The screws on the front of the case are for show only. They are painting plastic again. It gives the case a nice touch, though.

<center>Front Open</center>

The top front opens up to reveal the drive bays and the power and reset switch. Personally, I don't like cases that swing open, hiding the drive bays. I know it leads to a nicer looking case, but it isn't my personal preference. Regardless, the hinges are loose, but not too loose. By the way, the entire case is black, my camera has a hard time taking pictures inside of black.

<center>Window Side</center>

And here is a shot of the windowed side. Notice the laser cut design, looks like flames... or something to that nature. It is unique again. The entire thing is air brushed.

<center>Side Again</center>

Here is a back shot of the case and included is the tri-led lighted fan.

<center>Fan Guard</center>

The fan guard is also included. I think it is a bird or something.

<center>Iso 2</center>

The remaining two sides are pretty standard for any case. There are some light differences that you'll notice on the back.


You'll notice some purple things near the PCI slots. Most things on this case are screwless, and the PCI card locks are no different. They work great.
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The interior of the case yields a power supply. This is included with the case. It is an Orion 400 watt power supply. It is enough to handle most systems. For large and powerful system, a better power supply is recommended. There is no removable motherboard tray, that is fine for me. I don't like them.

<center>Optical Area</center>

The optical drive area. NZXT has a great locking mechanism for drives. It is the best screwless lock I've ever encountered. All you need to do is slide the lock to one side and put it in the locked position. The screwless design is amazing.

<center>HDD Area</center>

This is the hard drive area. The same locks apply to this one. Screwless all the way. This is the way to go. The locks are great. There is nothing more to say other than that about them.

<center>Fan holders</center>

This is the back fan area, Two fit in it. One is included when you buy the case. I would not say this is adequate airflow for high heat systems. Another fan for two would be better, you can add them if you want. By themselves, the airflow was fine for my 3GHz system with a 5950 Ultra. The case is also very quiet compared to ones that have a bunch of fans. I could hear the sound of my CPU fan over the case fans. Pretty quiet.


This is the parts that come with the case. It also came with a nice shirt, but I don't know if that's standard or not. You get the basic screws and stuff, manual and all. Let's see how the case looks when powered.

<center>Lighted Fan</center>

The first thing we have is the lighted fan. It has a nice effect. The case lighting included is minimal, you'll need a cold cathode or something to spruce up the lighting.

<center>Front Lights</center>

The front lighting is awesome. It is a sequential LED pattern. If you go to NZXT's site you'll see it in action.


NZXT's first case is a winner, no doubts about it. You can get this <a href="">case for around $80</a>. This is an amazing deal considering you get the case, two fans, and a power supply. With all this on their first case design, I can't wait till NZXT next case design. I really recommend this case to all that want a premodded case. Its ease of use and sleek design makes this a recommended buy.

I'd like to thank John from <a href="">NZXT</a> for sending this case for review.


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