NZXT is establishing itself as a brand with good and yet inexpensive cases. M59, for example, costs less than USD 60 and yet has several features traditionally found only on high-end models, like the interior painted black, 2.5” bays, eSATA port, meshed covers, place for installing fans on the top panel, screwless mechanisms for installing hard drives and more. Let’s see if M59 is a good pick.
The first thing we notice was that this is a very light case, weighting only 13.5 lbs (6.2 Kg), which is practically half of the weight of mid-tower cases we usually review.
The left side panel is transparent using a dark plastic sheet, giving it a different looks from the traditional clear transparent sheet that is normally used. It comes with a 120 mm fan installed on this panel (42 cfm, 23 dB) that glows blue when turned on. This fan has both the standard peripheral power plug and the small three-pin power connector, so you can either connect it directly to the power supply or to the motherboard and thus monitor its speed through your favorite monitoring program.
The front panel does not have a door. M59 has four external 5.25” bays, with the top bay coming with a black bezel for covering your optical drive, which is very useful if your optical drive isn’t black. The other three bays come with meshed covers to improve ventilation inside the case, featuring dust filters. M59 has a rim above the top 5.25” bay that glows blue when the computer is turned on. As you can see, this case does not have an external 3.5” bay, so no floppy disk drive or memory card reader is supported, and the case doesn’t come with an adapter for you to install this kind of peripheral on one of the 5.25” bays.
This case comes with two USB ports, which are too close to each other and thus can prevent you from installing two “fat” USB devices at the same time, and one eSATA port, which is a really nice addition and a feature not usually found on cases from this price range.
There is a big mesh on the lower portion of the front panel featuring a dust filter behind it, but there is no fan there.
[nextpage title=”Introduction (Cont’d)”]
On the top panel there are two places for installing two 120- or 140 mm fans, as shown in Figure 4. According to the manufacturer you can also install a water cooler radiator inside the case under this space.
On M59 the power supply is installed on the bottom of the case, another feature that is usually only available on more expensive cases. What is really nice about M59 is that it comes with a washable dust filter on the bottom of the case, right below where the power supply fan is located (if you use a power supply with a fan on the bottom part). This filter is easily accessible from outside the case.
In Figure 6, you can see the rear panel from M59. The rear panel and the interior from this case are painted black, which gives a very professional looks to this case. The slot covers are meshed, which helps increasing the internal airflow – another feature normally only found on more expensive units. There is also a mesh with big holes above the slots, also helping the internal airflow. The case comes with a 120 mm fan here (42 cfm, 23 dB, standard peripheral power connector and small three-pin connector) and as mentioned the power supply is installed on the bottom part. M59 comes with two holes for water cooling systems on the top part.
Now let’s take a look inside NZXT M59.[nextpage title=”Inside M59″]
Both panels are fastened to the case using thumbscrews, which is excellent. In Figure 7 we have an overall look from inside M59. The first thing that caught our attention was the presence of several big holes on the motherboard tray. The biggest one is used for having access to the CPU cooler backplate, allowing you to replace your CPU cooler with a more power model without the need of removing the motherboard from the chassis. The smaller ones are used for routing cables behind the tray. These holes are also usually only found on high-end products.
Daughter boards are fastened to the case using regular screws and we wouldn’t expect anything different on a case from this price range, even though it would be nice seeing at least thumbscrews here.
As already mentioned, according to the manufacturer you can install radiators from certain water cooling solutions on the holes available on the top panel.
[nextpage title=”The Disk Drive Bays”]
This case has four external 5.25” bays and seven internal 3.5” bays for hard disk drives. Even though we can see holes on the middle of the 5.25” bays for installing screwless retention mechanisms, this case doesn’t come with them. On the other hand, this case comes with several thumbscrews for fastening 5.25” devices, so you don’t need to use any tool to install them.
As for the 3.5” bays, two of them are located between the 5.25” cage and the main hard disk drive cage and they don’t use any kind of screwless retention mechanism. The five 3.5” bays present on the main hard disk drive cage use a screwless mechanism based on rulers that need to be installed on the sides of each drive.
M59 comes with an adapter for installing up to two 2.5” devices (most likely SSDs) on a 3.5” bay.
In Figure 14, you can see all accessories that come with this case.
[nextpage title=”Main Specifications”]
NZXT M59 case main specs include:
- Style: Mid-tower
- Application: ATX and smaller form factors derived from this one.
- Material: Zinc-coated steel (SECC), painted black inside.
- Power supply required: Doesn’t come with the product.
- Available colors: Black.
- Side panel: Transparent (dark).
- Dimensions: 17 3/4” x 7 1/2” x 20” (44.9 cm x 19.0 cm x 50.8 cm) (H x W x D).
- Net weight: 13.5 lbs (6.2 kg)
- Gross weight: 17.5 lbs (7.8 kg)
- Bays: Four external 5.25” bays and seven internal 3.5” bays.
- Expansion slots: Seven.
- Fans: One 120 mm on the side (blue) and one 120 mm fan on the rear (42 cfm, 23 dB).
- Optional fans: Two 120- or 140 mm fans on the top panel.
- More Information: https://www.nzxt.com
- Average price in the US*: USD 59.99 (USD 49.99 after a USD 10 mail-in rebate)
* Researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.[nextpage title=”Conclusions”]
NZXT M59 is a mid-tower case targeted to the user that wants an inexpensive good-quality mid-tower. Here is a summary of what we found about this product.
- Meshed bay covers.
- Meshed slot covers.
- Dust filters on the front panel.
- Dust filter on the bottom panel.
- Rear panel and interior are painted black.
- Hole in the motherboard tray for accessing the backplate of the CPU cooler.
- Holes for routing cables on the motherboard tray.
- eSATA port.
- Very light.
- No sharp edges where you could cut yourself while building your PC.
- Impressive number of hard disk drive bays (seven) that will please even the most demanding user.
- Screwless mechanisms for fastening the disk drives.
- Supports two 2.5” drives.
- Outstanding cost/benefit ratio.
- No external 3.5” bay (who uses floppies anyway?).
- Could have come with thumbscrews for fastening daughterboards.
- No noise absorbing mechanisms for the hard disk drives.
- The two USB ports are too close to each other, preventing you from installing two "fat" USB devices at the same time.
In summary, we think this is a terrific product for the user that is on a budget and is looking for a good product. Costing only USD 60 (USD 50 after a USD 10 mail-in rebate) this case is a no-brainer.