Phanteks NV5 Mid-Tower Review: Excellence in Design and Heat Dissipation

The Phanteks NV5 features an impressive dual-paneled panoramic glass in its mid-tower design. The absence of pillars enhances its clear and unobstructed look. For cooling, it can accommodate up to eight 120mm fans and boasts the capability for dual 360mm radiators both on the top and side. The back of the case includes a convenient cable management system, and it offers storage options for either three 3.5-inch HDDs or four 2.5-inch SSDs. This design prioritizes aesthetics, thermal efficiency, and flexibility.

NV5 Details:

  • Colors: Available in black and white.
  • Motherboard Compatibility: Fits E-ATX (up to 280mm width), ATX, M-ATX, and Mini-ATX.
  • Dimensions: 239mm x 477mm x 528mm.
  • Weights: Net – 11.28kg & Gross – 13.97kg.
  • Slots for Expansion: 7 available.
  • Cooling Options: Fans – Top (3 x 120mm), Side (3 x 120mm), Rear (1 x 120mm), Bottom (1 x 120mm); Radiators – Side (max 360mm), Top (max 360mm), Rear (max 120mm).
  • GPU Constraints: Maximum length of 440mm and width of 170mm.
  • CPU Cooler Maximum Height: 180mm.
  • Max Power Supply Length: 230mm.
  • Drive Bays: 3 slots for 3.5-inch drives and 4 for 2.5-inch drives.
  • Front Panel: Offers 1 x USB-C (10Gbps), 2 x USB-A ports, a 3.5mm audio jack, buttons for power, reset, and lighting control.
  • Warranty Period: 5 years.

Ocean View Room | Phanteks NV5 Unboxing

Earlier in the year, Phanteks introduced the NV7, a full-tower case characterized by its unique column-free dual-glass design. One distinctive feature was the positioning of the power supply at the top, making it taller than many of its counterparts. Now, with the release of the NV5, Phanteks has opted for a more conventional mid-tower framework, positioning the power supply at the bottom. This change significantly reduces the case’s size, yet it retains the hallmark features like the pillar-less dual-sided glass and slanted base, ensuring a consistent brand look.

In terms of compatibility, the NV5 can house the largest E-ATX motherboards, graphics cards up to 440mm in length, and CPU coolers with a maximum height of 170mm. It’s designed to support 360mm liquid cooling solutions both on the top and sides, ensuring compatibility with most contemporary components. For storage, the NV5 offers room for three 3.5-inch HDDs or four 2.5-inch SSDs, which is notably more generous than the dual 3.5-inch drive bays found in the majority of mid-tower cases.

NV5 outer box.
There are NV5 line outlines on both sides.
Mid-tower structure, bottom power supply.
Pillar-less double-sided glass.
Side air intake mesh.

The NV5 features two panels of solid tempered glass. The side panel is attached using screws from the back, while the front panel is a bit more intricate. To remove the front glass, one must first detach the side glass and then unscrew the two fasteners before pulling it out from the left side.

The side panels are fixed with hand screws.
There is one screw on the top and bottom of the front glass.
The inside of the glass is covered with foam to absorb shock and reduce noise.

The NV5 comes with support for the standard 7-slot PCIe. At its rear, there’s room to mount either a 120mm fan or a corresponding 120mm radiator. In alignment with its slanted base design, the power supply is positioned at an angle towards the bottom.

NV5 rear side.
The power supply is tilted at the bottom.

The NV5’s top can accommodate three 120mm fans or a 360mm radiator. It’s important to highlight that 140mm fans are not compatible with this setup.

Long vents on the top.
Supports 360mm radiator.

The I/O ports of the NV5 are situated at the top and include 1 USB-C with 10Gbps capability, 2 USB-A ports, a combined 3.5mm jack for both headphones and microphone, a power button, and a button to control the Storm Chaser D-RGB lighting.

Top IO.
IO cable.

The NV5 features a comprehensive dust filter at its base, which can be slid out either to the front or the back. However, to access it from the front, one has to take off the front side glass, a process that’s a bit more tedious.

Dust-proof net at the bottom.

Despite some space being occupied by the side fan, the NV5’s rear panel has a depth of 4cm. It comes equipped with numerous Velcro straps, simplifying the task of cable management. Behind the motherboard, there’s a shield that doubles as a hard drive bay. It can accommodate either three 3.5-inch hard drives or four 2.5-inch drives.

NV5 back space.
Hard drive “rack”.
4cm back panel depth.

Dual 360mm cold radiator, 440mm graphics card length | Phanteks NV5 Installed and measured

The NV5 can house the most expansive E-ATX motherboards, though it’s advised to keep the width under 280mm. Due to its more compact size in comparison to the NV7, it might not be optimal to utilize the graphics card bracket. In this context, an ATX motherboard would be a more fitting choice.

NV5 internal configuration.
Install the ATX motherboard.
Video card bracket.
The threading hole is equipped with a rubber pad.

Unlike the NV7 which allows fans to be positioned throughout its bottom, the NV5 has its power supply located there. Even so, there’s space for a 120mm fan at the front, complete with a fan bracket. The angled cover at the power supply section’s front can also be detached to simplify cable management.

120mm fan position at the bottom.
The fan bracket and the front section of the power supply compartment are detachable.
Wind Chaser specially cut out a groove to avoid conflict with the motherboard when disassembling the cover.

During hard drive installation, it’s important to note that cables at the back of the case (as seen on the right in the referenced picture) should ideally be positioned close to the edge. Avoid routing an excessive number of cables in this area to prevent any obstructions when closing the hard drive bay cover. Generally, the space at the back is generous. Even with three 3.5-inch hard drives installed, cable management should remain relatively hassle-free.

Install the hard drive.

The case can accommodate power supplies with a length of up to 230mm, providing a generous amount of room.

Install the power supply.
Due to the shape of the bottom, the power supply is actually placed diagonally.

The NV5 can accommodate radiators of up to 360mm on both the sides and the top, with a suggested thickness of no more than 62mm. A conventional radiator paired with a D30-120 fan should fit comfortably. However, it’s important to note that, due to its width, the case does not support 140mm fans or 280mm radiators.

Install the side cooling radiator.
If the thickness is within 62mm, it will not conflict with the graphics card.
Install the top cooling radiator.

For optimal cooling in the NV5, it’s recommended to set up fans to intake air from the side and bottom, while exhausting air from the top and rear. The 4-intake and 4-exhaust configuration is the most effective for thermal performance. Installing the cooling radiator on the side is advisable so it can directly draw cooler air from outside. Placing it at the top might result in drawing warm air from the graphics card. For the best aesthetic, using reverse-blade fans is a great choice. Position the reverse-blade fans on the sides and bottom, while standard fans should be placed on the top and rear.

Four-in and four-out fan configurations.
Bottom reverse blade fan.

The NV5 can accommodate graphics cards up to 440mm in length, allowing them to span all the way to the front glass without issues. Additionally, a bracket is provided adjacent to the motherboard to help prevent the graphics card from sagging.

The length of the graphics card is limited to 440mm.
Video card bracket.
Devil’s felt is provided on the back of the case for easy cable management.
Lighting effect display.
The effect after covering it with glass.
The power supply compartment has a built-in light bar.
Displayed at a 45 degree angle.
Front display.

Four-in and four-out fan configuration | Phanteks NV5 heat dissipation test

For the thermal performance test, the setup as previously described was used: a side-mounted cold radiator for air intake, a bottom fan also for air intake, and fans at the top and rear for exhaust. The system ran on a high-end Intel Core i9-13900K CPU and NVIDIA RTX 4080 GPU.

Test Rig Components:

CPU: Intel Core i9-13900K
Motherboard: ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E GAMING WIFI
Graphics: NVIDIA RTX 4080 FE
OS: Windows 11 PRO 21H2
Cooling: Phanteks GLACIER ONE 360 D30
PSU: 1000W 80PLUS Gold

The thermal performance met expectations. The side-mounted cold radiator’s air intake performed comparably to an open platform setup. The temperature curve remained stable without any frequency throttling. Remarkably, the RTX 4080’s temperature never crossed 70 degrees, indicating efficient cooling. Note that the NV5 does not come with fans pre-installed. It’s advised to adopt the 4-intake and 4-exhaust fan configuration for the best cooling results.

In summary

The Phanteks NV5 continues the brand’s tradition of top-notch quality and ease of installation, a hallmark of the Wind Chaser series. Its mid-tower, dual-glass design makes efficient use of space while its pillar-free structure optimizes visual impact. The signature slanted base adds a familial aesthetic and also contributes subtly to better thermal performance, achieving two objectives simultaneously.

In terms of expandability, the NV5 excels. It outperforms most mainstream mid-tower cases with more storage options, dual 360mm radiator support, and room for graphics cards up to 440mm and CPU coolers up to 170mm. These features cater to a broad spectrum of gamers and cooling requirements, so there’s no need for concern on that front.

As for pricing, the NV5 is available at RMB 3,190 for the black version and RMB 3,490 for the white variant. This makes it considerably more budget-friendly than its larger sibling, the NV7. However, keep in mind that you’ll also need to factor in the cost of purchasing reverse-blade fans to optimize aesthetics. After all, if you’re investing in a case with such a distinctive visual appeal, equipping it with reverse-blade fans will further enhance its appearance.

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Title: Phanteks NV5 Mid-Tower Review: Excellence in Design and Heat Dissipation