The S340 is a mid-tower from NZXT and offers an array of handy features that not only make the case a joy to use in most PC builds, but also makes operating an overclocked system a breeze (quite literally). From the get-go you have a stunning chassis with a transparent side panel. This isn't glass and is easily scratched and smudged with fingerprints, but can be deployed to showcase all the LEDs in the world and RGB components. Just, you know, don't go fondling it.
It's not the largest case by any means, measuring in at 203mm x 474mm x 432mm. Up front you have a clean panel that's actually connected to the main unit via a few clips. This allows for ample airflow to be drawn from both the top and bottom of this pane. There's the NZXT logo towards the bottom and that's about it. Up top on the main body is the power button, two USB 3.0 ports and headphone and microphone jacks.
Behind the I/O panel is a 140mm fan grill (which also supports 120mm fans). This can be used to either draw in or exhaust air, depending on how you have everything else configured. On the back is a single 120mm fan grill along with an opening for a motherboard shield, PSU mount and a total of 7 PCI slots.You can easily run multiple graphics cards in this case in SLI and CrossFire modes.
Underneath there's a grill for the PSU. Unfortunately, if you happen to be one who enjoys having the PSU facing upwards and exhausting warm air from within the chassis, you'll need to install the unit facing down in the S340. This is due to the shroud that separates the PSU and messy cabling from the rest of the case. It's worth the switch and makes everything look tidy.
Speaking of grills and fan vents, there are two dust filters included with the S340 that should help keep the components free from dust. One attaches to the PSU grill, while another covers the entire length of the front panel and is held in place by a single clip and a few magnets. They're both easy to remove to clean and add to the overall presentation of your PC, because this is one of those cases you want to take to a LAN party to show off — ideally without everything inside being caked in dust.
The front panel can hold up to a 240mm radiator, ideal for all-in-one water-cooling solutions for the CPU or GPU. Alternatively, you can install a 120mm radiator on the rear vent. Due to the restriction of space, especially if you happen to install a GPU with a massive shroud, you'll be hard pressed to design a custom water-cooling solution for the S340.
It certainly is a compact platform to build in, but the available cut outs on the central panel make it easy to route cables and install various cable ties to avoid creating Spaghetti City. Full ATX motherboards and even the largest GPUs will be able to call the S340 a home. I really like how even though everything looks cramped inside, it's actually well ventilated with certain components, like the PSU and hard drives, hidden away.
If you're hunting down a case that not only looks the part, but can keep your components cool under load and is also easy to maintain, take a good look at the NZXT S340. Just be careful when placing things on the matte finish top. It can scratch real easy.
At the time of writing, the S340 is priced at $69.99, and is available in glossy white, black, matte black and blue, matte black and red, as well as a special Razer edition ($94.99).
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.