NZXT Lexa S
Lexa S belongs to the Crafted series, just like Apollo, which means that production quality is top-notch and we have no remarks in that field whatsoever. The front panel door, characterised by high-quality plastic, opens from left to right. The left side contains speaker, microphone, eSATA and two USB connectors. This connector layout might present a problem if a larger device needs to be connected and your case meets your desk on that very side. A transparent side panel is obligatory and looks the same as in the previously reviewed models. The case comes with eight tracks for mounting 3.5” devices, and a separate 3.5”/2.5” adapter with its own tracks is in the bundle as well. You’ll also get a multi-language manual, a set of screws with a large head so as to ease the installation of 5.25” devices, as well as a few ordinary screws for the installation of additional cards on the motherboard.
Just like M95, Lexa S also contains water-cooling pipe openings and a replaceable dust filter, located near the PSU on the bottom of the case. The inside of the case is also painted in black, fitting with the outer looks perfectly. The HDD cage is rotated by 90 degrees in order to provide easier cabling, which seems to have become standard as far as this company is concerned. Although the somewhat cheaper M95 has all these features as well, the main differences lie in the number of preinstalled fans, four of which are present here – 12 cm ones on the transparent side panel, exhaust on the back of the case and intake on the front. Another 14 cm fan is installed at the top of the case. In the unlikely case that someone finds this insufficient, there is an additional slot for installing another 12/14 cm fan at the top.
The thing that took us by (a positive) surprise is the inclusion of a fan controller which can control up to 4 fans via 3-pin connectors, so that you can easily control the speed of installed fans. Speed control is performed via two potentiometers, positioned on the front of the case, with two fans assignable to each. The interiors are organised in such a way that they provide easier cabling (there are cable hiding holes), and in order to hide the cables even better, those holes are coated with rubber, so that the cables are both protected and well-hidden from sight. Tin quality is very high, just like with M95 and Apollo models.
Gamma is a more accessible model and possesses no transparent side panel as such, since it would only increase the overall cost. You won’t get the 3.5”/2.5” adapter either, so the bundle contains ten instead of eight 3.5” mounting tracks. As far as preinstalled fans are concerned, there is a 12 cm exhaust fan on the back, integrating a 3-pin connector. Fans can be added to all places where Lexa S has them, except for the side panel, where you can actually mount two fans, ranging from 8 to 12 cm in diameter. The front panel contains eSATA, microphone, speaker and two USB connectors. Plastic quality of the front panel pieces is satisfactory, but also noticeably worse than the one that top models such as M95 and Lexa S pride themselves on, which is to be expected bearing the designated price of this case in mind.
Tin quality is just as good as Lexa S’, which is certainly a major plus. The black interiors with easier cabling openings are also present, as well as the replaceable dust filter, positioned on the bottom of the case beneath the PSU space. The bundle that the case arrives with is exactly the same as the one we’ve seen on M95 and Lexa S, besides the difference in the number of 3.5” mounting tracks, as already stated.
Both cases are priced very objectively and we are glad that even the cheapest models are manufactured out of quality tin and contain the same 3.5” mounting tracks. If you’ve had M95 or Apollo on your mind, we suggest that you consider the Lexa S model well too, which is a very good choice, mostly because of its four preinstalled fans and the fan controller which can reduce their noise emission levels as low as you prefer.
|NZXT Gamma||NZXT Lexa S|
|Dimensions||190 x 449 x 508 mm||196 x 480 x 528 mm|
|Weight||6 kg||7 kg|
|Supported form factors||Micro ATX / ATX|
|Number of 5.25”/3.5” slots||4 / 7|
|I/O panel||2 x USB, 1 x e-SATA, front audio (mic in, spk out)|
|Price||about 40 EUR||about 73 EUR|