Hands-on: NZXT’s new H7 lineup has an airflow-optimized case and lots of tempered glass

Today, NZXT is announcing an all-new H7 series of mid-tower PC cases. The H7 lineup replaces the previous H710 and H710i with an all-new set of options, including the H7, H7 Flow, and H7 Elite. I recently rebuilt my main PC in the H7 Elite, and have quite a few thoughts on the incoming replacement for one of NZXT’s staples in its custom case lineup. There’s a lot to unpack about the new H7 series from NZXT, so let’s take a closer look.

NZXT H7 series of cases offer a sleeker, tool-free design

We’ll start with getting all the specs out of the way here. To begin with, all panels and SSD trays are toolless now, meaning you won’t even have to remove a thumb screw to pull the side sheet of glass off any of the NZXT H7 cases. This is a welcomed change from the H710/i previously, and it was quite easy to do overall. One thing to note, the side panels don’t tilt as much as you’d expect, so just pop them off and lift up to remove.

All of the new NZXT cases have a tempered glass side panel and support for a vertical GPU mount, though the base H7 has a solid front, the H7 Flow is perforated, and the H7 Elite packs a tempered glass front panel. Speaking of the front, you’ll find support for up to 3x140mm fans there, with 3x120mm fan support on the top and 1x140mm fan around the rear. The front and side support up to 360mm radiators while the rear can hold a 140mm radiator. Around the top of all units you’ll find two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C connector, and a headset audio jack. Of course, all H7 cases have NZXT’s signature (though revamped) cable management bar.

One more thing that sets the H7 Elite apart from the other two cases here is the inclusion of three RGB fans as well as the RGB & Fan Controller v2 with three fan and six lighting channels that’s controllable via NZXT CAM. However, due to costs, NZXT doesn’t include in-case lighting anymore on its more premium H7 Elite case and sells it as a separate add-on. While I can understand why NZXT went this way, it would have been nice to see included in the package, though it’s only a $18 add-on if you want to pick it up when purchasing your case.

Which NZXT H7 case should you chose?

With three cases to pick from, you’ll likely be wondering which you should pick, especially since the base H7 and H7 Flow cost the same. So, NZXT has some pointers for why you’d pick one over the other.

H7 – $130

The base NZXT H7 is for those who want a sleek case that will “easily fit into any setup.” It boasts improved thermal design over the previous H710, and has all of the new featured that we talk about above, but that’s about it for this case. It’s sleek, minimal, and simple.

H7 Flow – $130

Those who value cooling over all else will want to check out the NZXT H7 Flow. It’s essentially the H7 above, but with the solid front panel swapped out for a perforated one. This allows for additional airflow from the front, as well as some ambient light passthrough if you have RGB fans mounted up there as well. Really though, that’s the only difference. Thankfully, NZXT isn’t charging any extra to swap the front panel, which is nice to see.

H7 Elite – $200

Stepping things up in price and features is the NZXT H7 Elite. This case is for those who prefer looks over thermals and want a more premium experience. You’ll find not only a tempered glass side panel like the H7 and H7 Flow, but also tempered glass around the front. It still has fairly good thermals, however, though my Ryzen 5 5600X does sit a few degrees warmer in this case than in my previous H710i.

9to5Toys’ Take

After spending a bit with the NZXT H7 Elite, I can say that it’s a gorgeous case. In fact, it’s the only case that I can recall where I said “that’s stunning” audibly after taking it out of the package. I love the new single-tone white color, which is a contrast to the previous H710i where it was white exterior with a black interior. The new cable management system is also quite nice and made it super simple to have an extremely clean build. However, there are a few omissions in the H7 Elite that the H710i had, which I do greatly miss.

For starters, NZXT has had a tray for the power supply for quite some time now. You’d screw a bracket onto the power supply and then slot it in from the back. It was super simple, and I loved it…and now that’s gone. It’s not a huge thing, and absolutely wouldn’t keep me from buying the case, but it’s something to note. Another thing that I wasn’t too thrilled about, but can understand, is the omission of an internal LED light bar, like the H710i it’s replacing had. After speaking with NZXT, it seems like the LED bar was omitted due to price so they could add the RGB fans and tempered glass front panel and stay at $200, but it doesn’t mean I don’t miss it. The RGB fans are valued way higher than the LED strip, so it wouldn’t be too hard to add it back, but I will say it’s something I was expecting coming from the H710i and will now be looking for a way to replace. However, if you already have some RGB fans, or plan to add RGB fans to the top/back, then you’ll have plenty of interior lighting and this is a moot point anyway, so do keep that in mind.

Overall, I’m very pleased with my experience so far with the NZXT H7 Elite. Outside of those two things mentioned above, and the fact that I run a degree or two warmer compared to my H710i, the new H7 lineup seems to be a great choice for your new PC. Honestly, if I was given the choice of an H710i or the H7 Elite, I would choose the H7 Elite. Sure, it has a few drawbacks, but the new all-white interior, upgraded controller, and included RGB fans make it an easy choice all around.

Buy the NZXT H7

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