The GraVT photography system uses an off the shelf Lian Li PC-8FIR red spider edition red mid-tower PC case that features a see-thru side panel with red lighting. The PC-8FI case was released in 2010 and aimed at PC gaming enthusiasts, and gaming professionals who want a high quality product with a unique look. Lian Li’s case is made from high quality aluminum and all the sharp edges have been removed for safety. Nearly everything involved with installing components on this case is tool-less, from the 5.25″ drive bays and 3.5″ HDDs to the expansion cards and power supply.
The only modification that GraVT did to this case was to place their website decal (The3DShop.com) on the front with some double sided tape, so this case is covered with logos on all sides.
Taking a look at the left side of the case you can see that the
side panel has window that is in the shape of a spider.
The opposite side of the case features the the GraVT logo and website address on the solid side panel.
Looking down at the top of the LIAN LI PC-8FIR case you can see that there is a spot for an optional 140mm fan to help exhaust hot air up and out of the case. GraVT didn’t install any fans here, but you have the ability to if you wanted to increase the airflow of this case. The chassis is ventilated using dual 120 mm intake fans and a 120 mm exhaust fan, so adding a 140mm top fan for extra cooling might not be a bad idea for some. GraVT does include the mesh fan grill with the purchase of the system.
Flipping the case over we can see that it has four hard plastic feet that have felt pads on them to keep the your desk surface from being scratched. The feet pads are nice, but we noticed that they did leave black smudges on our white test bench.
The power supply unit sits at the bottom of the case and there are air intake slits for fresh air intake. Lian Li even put a fan filter here to keep your power supply from sucking dust in. This design is nice as it allows for clean fresh cool air to be sucked in from outside of the case, instead of pre-heated air from within. This will bring down the core temperatures and extend the lifespan of the PSU significantly.
The back of the case has a 120mm fan on the with a spider themed fan grill to help exhaust hot air out. This fan doesn’t have red LED lights on it. The Lian Li PC-8FIR has two pre-cut holes with grommets for external water cooling systems, so you are covered if you ever wanted to go water cooling in the future. The power supply is mounted on the bottom, which is pretty much standard now.
When it comes to connectivity the ASUS GeForce GTX 570 DirectCU II video card has dual DVI, Display Port and HDMI ports for your display monitor. The Intel DZ68BC motherboard has six USB 2.0/1.1 ports, two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports, a single IEEE 1394a & eSATA port, one Gigabit RJ-45 LAN port, 5 x audio jacks (Line In/Line Out/Microphone) and a S/PDIF out. The motherboard also has DVI-I, DisplayPort and HDMI video outputs.
The Lian Li PC-8FIR spider is a mid-tower case that features three 5.25″ drive bays. GraVT placed a Vantec 58 in 1 memory card reader in the bottom drive bay and in the top drive bay they installed a Lite-On 16x DVD-RW with LightScribe in the top 5.25″ bay slot. The other one is left open for future expansion.
On the very top of the case you’ll find a eSATA port, two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports along with the audio and microphone ports. To the right of these are the power and reset buttons.