MSI Gaming Nightblade ITX (1)

MSI has launched a new desktop PC chassis and this time, it’s for the ITX market. ITX is picking up speed as the spec of choice for enthusiasts who want a rig to be quieter, more efficient and use less space. MSI says they’ll sell the Nightblade as part of a barebones configuration and it’ll come with MSI’s Z87I GAMING AC mini-ITX motherboard as well as a 80Plus Gold rated 600W power supply and it won’t be cheap – MSI set the RRP for the base package at US $599 (approx. R6400) with a free set of Steelseries Siberia headphones thrown into the package. No release date has been announced for South Africa as yet.

The Nightblade as a whole package weighs just 7.8kg and has enough space for quite a lot of hardware. Along with the mini-ITX motherboard inside as well as the power supply, there’s space for a 120mm CPU tower cooler, 92mm and 120mm fans front and back, a slot-loading DVD drive, a pair of 2.5-inch drives and one 3.5-inch hard drive in the front of the chassis.

Picking out a GPU might be a bit of an issue because although there’s a whopping 290mm of free space to wedge one in, you don’t want to pick one that has too much of an overhang or else the fan blades might bump against the bottom of the chassis. There might also be a great incentive for using custom PSU cables and MSI could have spent some time thickening the chassis a tiny bit to accommodate some holes for cable management. As it stands, the chassis might be easy to build into, but it won’t look pretty inside. 

MSI Gaming Nightblade ITX (5)

The handle on the front is made of steel and is used to prop up the chassis to draw air from underneath for the GPU as well as to serve for carrying the chassis when you’re on the go. MSI seems to think that most gamers buying one of these kits will be using it to attend LANs, but I’m not sure many would considering there’s no way to show off what’s inside. MSI’s Gaming branding looks pretty cool, but it’s what underneath that people would want to ogle at, especially if you keep the red and black theme going on inside.

MSI may be onto something here, though. I’ve said before that PC gamers who pay attention to what goes into their rigs and what they look like spend a lot of time picking out components that look good together and compliment an overall theme or colour scheme. MSI, though, makes it pretty easy to pick out a board, a GPU, memory and a chassis that all share an overall theme and look really impressive.

So would you go for a chassis like this one? Do you build up your computers with an overall theme in mind, or does function come before form? Let us know in the comments below and in our forums!

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