- Aluminium front
- three 5.25in drive mounts
- Red LED fan
In Win is arguably the king of bling when it comes to PC cases, with it having produced some of the most stunning-looking, lavish designs of recent years. These include: models sporting mirrored glass; motorised, self-opening mechanisms; and masses of brushed aluminium.
The In Win 703, though, is a much more modest affair. And, in fact, it’s something of a disappointment. You still get a touch of aluminium in the shape of the front panel, but the rest of the case looks and feels every bit the £50 case that it is.
The biggest problem is that the styling is just awkward. The bulging side panels and aggressive red highlights just don’t work, especially with that big In Win logo that sits smack-bang in the centre of the side window.
A further sign of this case trying to aim stylistically higher than it can manage is the presence of an LED-lit, red-glowing fan at the rear. It’s such a token effort to jazz up the interior of a build, and feels very much like the sort of thing case-modders were adding to their cases 10 years ago.
Before I get too down on this case, however, I’ll concede that of course style is subjective, and actually in most other regards this is a very capable case for the money.
Those bulging side panels do aid practicality when it comes to cable routing round the back and fitting in giant CPU coolers round the front.
There are also plenty of little improvements over a case such as the BitFenix Nova. Sturdy steel is used in the construction; it has a more convenient front-facing 4-bay, 3.5in hard drive section; and there’s space between the 5.25in and 3.5in bays that allows for even the largest graphics card to fit in this case with ease.
Cooling options are also better, with the rear 120mm fan joined by space for two further fans at the front. The Nova, too, has such mounts – but they’re easier to access on the 703, airflow to them is better and there’s an integrated dust filter as well. The case isn’t capacious enough to house our Corsair H100i water-cooler radiator, though.
In another nod to rather old-school case design, there are a couple of rubber-shrouded holes above the rear fan intended for water-cooling pipes to exit and enter the case. Next to no-one does water-cooling in such as manner anymore, and so feel a little pointless on a case in this price range.
In terms of more general features, there are three 5.25in drive bays, with one accessible from the front, and one fairly basic plastic tool-less holder for said drives – any extra 5.25in additions will have to be screwed into place.
There’s no ventilation on top of the case, but you do get a power button – actually, it’s at the top of the right-hand side – plus a USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports and headphone and microphone jacks.
Like the Nova, the expansion card slots are tear-off style, with only one replaceable cover included, but otherwise installation is easy. There are no holes above the motherboard through which to thread power supply cables, but on all other sides there’s ample room. Add in the bulging rear panel and it’s easy to hide most of your power supply’s cables out of sight.
As for cooling performance, that single fan struggled as you might expect, but nowhere near as much as the Nova. The CPU topped out at 81 degrees and the GPU at 78 degrees. These certainly aren’t good results, but sufficiently below the point where there’s a chance either will be throttling back performance.
Similarly, noise levels were higher than some but still way below the Nova, with the front registering 41.1dB and the side hitting 41.0dB. As with most of the cases on test, it’s the GPU’s fan that creates most of this noise as it ramps ever higher to try to keep cool.
I’ve been a bit down on the In Win 703 since its styling really isn’t my thing, plus a couple of its features feel pretty out of place in this day and age. However, when all is said and done, the In WIn 703 gets the job done. It’s easy to use, has a reasonable selection of features and does okay when it comes to cooling and noise. It just doesn’t feel like the best case for the money, though.