If you are looking for a more affordable Louqe Ghost or Dan A4 style case this is a great option, offering the same layout style with some additional features and customization options.
Nouvolo Steck CaseFrom $155
Every month it seems like we get another quality Mini-ITX case. This month it’s the Nouvolo Steck, a modular all metal minimalist case. This aluminum unit comes in either a base air cooled version, or with an add on radiator section.
Nouvolo Steck Specifications
|DIMENSIONS||Base: 215 x 315 x 145mm|
Stack: 275 x 315 x 145mm
|COOLER SUPPORT||Base: Up to 70mm Air Coolers|
Stack: 120mm or 240mm AIO
|DRIVE SUPPORT||Base: 3 x 2.5″ HDD|
Stack: 5 x 2.5″ HDD
|GPU SUPPORT||Dual Slot up to 295mm|
Packaging & Build Quality
The Steck comes well packaged. Each component group has its own thick Styrofoam section that ensures safe delivery. The case does require user assembly, luckily its a very simple 8 screw process.
The base unit case will come with everything you see pictured here. Unlike most cases, magnetic strips are used to secure the side and top panels. The metal used here is not very thick, the side panels and case spine have a decent amount of flex to them. This isn’t the type of case you can throw around, or safely put in a bag. I also found that there were some issues with panel alignment, particular the top panel and add on stack unit.
In addition to the components you see here, there is also an add on “Stack” unit that can accommodate up to 240mm AIO’s. There are also optional glass side panels that let you show off your CPU and GPU if you would like. Check back here next week. I will be doing a separate build with the stack unit and adding the info here.
For my test system I wanted to fill the Steck to the brim, and stress it as much as possible. The components I chose were the following.
|CPU||Intel Core i7-8700K|
|GPU||Gigabyte RTX 2070 Mini|
|SSD||2 x 1tb Samsung 860 EVO|
|RAM||Corsair Vengeance 3000|
Building in the Nouvolo Steck is relatively simple. Everything fits into its designated section like its supposed to. The only issue I had was finding a place for the motherboard power cables. For more information on the build process I would check out the video above.
Steck + Stack Add-on Unit
The Nouvolo Steck also has an add on Stack Unit. This allows you to use up to a 240mm AIO to cool your CPU or GPU. You could also use it for additional hard drives, or intake/exhaust fans. The CPU cooler and graphics card were updated for this section to the components listed below.
|GPU||Gigabyte G1 Gaming GTX 1060|
|COOLER||Cooler Master: Masterliquid 240|
Hard Drive Support
The Steck is very flexible when it comes to hard drive placement. Depending on your case configuration it supports up to 5 2.5″ hard drives.
- 1 under the PSU without the stack unit
- 3 with Compact GPU without the stack unit
- 1 with the Stack unit and 240mm AIO
- 3 with the Stack unit and a 120mm AIO
- 5 with the Stack unit and no AIO
Overall cooling performance of the Steck was very good in both case configurations. While the glass side panels certainly don’t do the cooling any favors, temperatures were still kept in check. If you go with a more powerful card like a 2080 or 2080ti, you may want to stick with the vented metal side panel to increase airflow.
|BASE: CPU||BASE: GPU||STACK: CPU||STACK: GPU|
Noise Levels (average)
In either configuration I found noise levels to be acceptable. If you are looking to build a gaming pc that is as quiet as possible, the stack unit and a full length multi fan GPU would be recommended.
|BASE STECK||STECK + STACK: CPU|
Nouvolo did a nice job with the Steck. It takes the layout and design of the Louqe Ghost S1 and expands on it, adding new features like riser feet and glass side panels.
If you are looking for a more affordable alternative to the DAN Case A4 or Louque Ghost S1 this is a great option.