When it comes to your gaming PC’s enclosure, some manufacturers put what seems to be excessive effort and “features” into the appearance of the chassis over the functionality. At the end of the day, most gamers want a system that just works, and works efficiently. Yes, wild looks can be cool and interesting, but they rarely result in higher scores or better performance. A newcomer to the PC chassis arena, Metallic Gear (powered by Phanteks) is taking a more minimalist approach to appearance with their new NEO series of chassis. Clean lines, sandblasted aluminum exterior panels and tempered glass left and right panels result in a gaming build that looks good and performs quite efficiently.
Today we have on hand for review Metallic Gear’s NEO MidTower PC chassis in black (also available in silver). We would like to extend a tip of the TechnologyX “cap” to Metallic Gear for providing the review sample. As far as specifications for the NEO MidTower chassis, we see external dimensions of 210mm (W) x 450mm (H) x 400mm (D) (and for the non-metric, 8.3″ x 17.7″ x 15.7″). It supports ATX, Micro ATX and Mini ITX motherboards. The front I/O panel features 2 x USB 3.0 ports, microphone and headphone jacks, a reset button and an RGB LED lighting switch. Also present are 7 PCI expansion slots, and 2 x 3.5″ drive trays and 2 x 2.5″ SSD brackets.
On the cooling side of things, the NEO MidTower’s front panel can handle a pair of either 120mm fans or 140mm fans, or either a 120mm, 140mm, 240mm or 280mm liquid cooling radiator. The rear of the NEO MidTower supports a single either 120mm fan or 120mm liquid cooling radiator (2 x Metallic Gear 120mm fans come pre-installed). Maximum CPU cooler height is stated as 170mm, with a maximum graphics card length of 360mm. The maximum power supply length supported is 195mm, and there is a healthy 36mm of cable management clearance between the right side panel and the rear of the motherboard tray. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the package and contents.
Metallic Gear ships the NEO ATX MidTower in a standard cardboard-brown carton, with the Metallic Gear logo and NEO name, along with a line drawing of the chassis itself and “Powered by Phanteks”. The rear sports only a Metallic Gear logo. The side panels both feature the same set of compliance icons in several languages.
Once we slide the exterior carton off, we see a standard-looking two-piece styrofoam shell that protects the case during shipping and warehousing, which is enclosed in a sturdy plastic bag. Once we remove these, we get our first glimpse of the NEO’s understated yet eye-appealing appearance (see first image above). Both the right and left tempered glass side panels are protected by static-cling clear sheets, which we will leave in place until system installation is complete.
To find the hardware package that is included with the NEO, one must remove the front panel and slide out one of the drive trays. The hardware box is sized to exactly fit the drive tray, even “latching” into place. The box contains half a dozen zip ties, and various mounting screws and standoffs for component installation.