Lian Li PC-V354 - Electric Screwdriver Recommended

Exterior Design

Exterior Design

Over the years, Lian Li has stuck with its boxy, aluminum designs and the V354 doesn't deviate from this formula. Some will no doubt find the design too bland, but at least the manufacturer has tried to jazz it up somewhat with LED fans that glow in either red or blue. As the V354 comes in three colors of black, red and silver, the front LED lights too will vary to complement the chassis color.

This full, anodized aluminum case comes with four stylish stands that would not be out of place besides your other home theater equipment. It is equipped with a single external 5.25-inch drive bay for a single optical drive. Given its target market, users are unlikely to feel the lack of any hot-swappable external 3.5-inch bays for hard drives. Considering how tightly packed this small case may end up, we rather go with the two included front 120mm fans in the enclosure than an external 3.5-inch bay(s).

The V354 may look like a plain box, but the brushed aluminum gives it a classy feel. Personally, we'll turn off those distracting LED lights if it's meant to be a home theater PC (HTPC), but those who intend to build a LAN gaming machine may have other ideas. The only problem we see here so far is the number of screws securing the side panels.

The huge air intake mesh for the dual 120mm LED fans just behind it dominates the front facade of this mini tower. Depending on the color of the case, there could be either red or blue LED lights. The fine layer of mesh at least keeps some dust out of the case.

There is just one external drive bay for an optical drive, but it should be enough for most users today.

The usual power and reset buttons. An SD card reader that supports MS and SD (up to SDHC standard) cards is also present.

The audio and headphone jacks are standard issue and it's nice to see that Lian Li is keeping up with the times with two front USB 3.0 ports.

This case comes with a top fan installed by default instead of a rear fan. It's a large but relatively quiet 140mm fan. Like the front fans, air filters are present to reduce dust buildup.

Our first major grouse with this case is with the side panels, which require removing EIGHT screws for each panel.

The limitation of the mini tower form factor means that Lian Li had to squeeze the power supply housing right next to the expansion slots.

A very handy fan controller at the back that supports up to four fans allows users to control their internal cooling, but of course only if those fans support this feature. Fan speed is depicted as a simple gradient from Low to High.

A screwdriver is required to install any expansion cards on this little casing.

The mounting plate for the power supply unit is held together by four thumb screws. You'll have to remove this plate and attach it to your power supply via four screw holes (two are shown here) before installing it to the case.

The Good
Lightweight aluminum casing
Able to fit long graphics cards
The Bad
Installation or maintenance process involves many screws