Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced Mini-ITX Case

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Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced Mini-ITX Case

December 6, 2012 by Lawrence Lee

Cooler Master
Elite 120 Advanced
Mini-ITX Case
Street Price

Cooler Master is one of the biggest players in the PC case market and has been for as long as we can remember. Their catalogue is dominated by towers of various sizes and price ranges from the affordable Elite/Centurion series to the massive Cosmos. They've dabbled in smaller mini-ITX cases like the fanless TC-100 we examined in 2009 but nothing with mainstream appeal has ever matriculated until now. The rising popularity of the mini-ITX form factor is difficult to ignore when the position of the desktop PC as the dominant species among computing devices is in question.

The box.

The Elite 120 Advanced.

The Elite 120 Advanced is one of the biggest mini-ITX breadbox style cases we've seen, close in size — at first glance — to the 14.6 liter SilverStone Sugo SG07 reviewed two years ago. At 20 liters, however, the Elite 120 displaces 25% more volume. In comparison, the classic Shuttle systems which kicked off the breadbox PC trend a decade ago and SilverStone look-alikes (the SG05/06) were typically 11~12 liters. These earlier boxes were not really meant to house hot video cards and could handle hot CPUs only with fairly noisy CPU coolers. Like the SG07, the Elite 120 Advanced provides enough room for a powerful discrete graphics card and aims at satisfying gamers seeking a smaller PC without compromising performance.

The chassis has an unassuming appearance, a long and boxy breadbox sized case with a matte black finish and ventilation slits riddled along the sides and top of the case. It stands only about 8 inches tall but that's enough for a SFF gaming machine, which clearly was Cooler Master's intention. The Elite 120 Advanced supports graphics cards up to 34.3 cm long and CPU coolers up to 6.5 cm tall (actually 7.6 cm by our measurements), an ATX power supply, a standard 5.25 inch optical drive, and up to three 3.5 inch hard drives. Cooling is comes in the form of a 120 mm intake fan and a low profile 80 mm side fan. It's a very affordable case, with current street price as low as US$45.


The case ships with a short manual, a PC speaker, a small bag of screws, a nut-driver to tighten the motherboard standoffs, four fan bolts for a second 120 mm fan, zip-ties, and a pair of drive sleds with two more inside pre-installed to a pair of 2.5 inch drive trays.

Specifications: Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced
(from the product web page)
Model RC-120A-KKN1
Color Black
Material Appearance: Aluminum & Polymer front
Case body: Steel Alloy
Dimension 240 x 207.4 x 401.4mm - 20 liters
9.4 x 8.2 x 15.8 inch
Weight 3.3 kg / 7.3 lb
M/B Type Mini-ITX
5.25" Drive Bay 1
3.5" Drive Bay 3 (internal)
2.5" Drive Bay 4 (internal, converted from two 3.5” bays)
I/O Panel USB 3.0 x 1 (internal), USB 2.0 x 2, Mic x 1,
Audio x 1 (supports AC97 / HD Audio)
Expansion Slots 2
Cooling System Front: 120mm fan x 1, 1200 RPM, 19dBA
Side: 80x15mm fan x 1, 2000 RPM, 20dBA
HDD: 120x25mm fan x 1 (optional)
Power Supply Standard ATX PS2
Maximum Compatibility VGA card length: 343.0 mm / 13.5"
CPU cooler height: 65.0 mm / 2.5"
Warranty 2 years

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