Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini – Flexible cube case with lots of glass
Lian Li is a Taiwan-based manufacturer of computer cases and computer accessories, which was established in 1983. The manufacturer has made a name for itself in the hardware industry, especially with its high-quality workmanship in aluminum cases. In 2016, Lian Li introduced a cube case with tempered glass for the first time. This was called Lian Li PC-O9 and could be purchased at a RRP of 449.90 €.
This case was followed by numerous changes and new developments in recent years. Probably the most famous offspring of the PC-O series is the PC-O11 Dynamic, which was introduced in 2018. This case was developed in cooperation with the professional overclocker Roman “der8bauer” Hartung and is still very popular today. The main reason is probably the high compatibility for air and water cooling components. But it also leaves quite a big footprint on the desk.
At the CES 2020, Lian Li then presented the PC-O11 Dynamic Mini. This is supposed to convince with significantly smaller dimensions but still with a high compatibility for hardware and space for different mainboard sizes. This should be made possible by a variable mainboard tray layout. How the Lian Li PC-O11D Mini performs in our test and for whom it is recommended, you can read in this review.
|Model:||Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini|
|Case type:||ATX with SFX power supply|
|Dimensions:||270 mm (W) x 380 mm (H) x 420 mm (D)|
|Material:||steel, aluminum, plastic, tempered glass|
|Color:||Black or white|
|Front connectors||1x USB 3.1 Type-C, 2x USB 3.0 Type-A, 1x headphone/ microphone|
|Drive bays:||2x 3,5″/ 2,5″ (internal)
2x 2,5″ (internal)
|Extension slots:||3x/5x/7x horizontal (depending on backpanel)|
|Form factors:||ATX, mATX, ITX|
|Ventilation:||cover: 3x 120 mm or 2x 140 mm
side: 3x 120 mm or 2x 140 mm
bottom: 3x 120 mm or 2x 140 mm
Back: 1x 120 mm
|Radiators:||cover: 1x 360 mm or 1x 280 mm or 1x 240 mm
side: 1x 280 mm or 1x 240 mm
bottom: 1x 360 mm or 1x 280 mm or 1x 240 mm
|Max. CPU cooler height:||170 mm|
|Max. graphic card length:||395 mm|
|Max. power supply unit length:||165mm (SFX or SFX-L)|
|Place for cable management:||70 mm|
|Specials:||dust filter, cable management, tempered glass, modular backpanel|
Scope of delivery
The Lian Li O11D Mini comes in an unobtrusively designed cardboard box. It is mainly printed in brown and partly in black. In addition to a picture of the case, numerous technical data are printed on the sides. Inside the cardboard box, the cube case is covered by normal styrofoam and a plastic foil. Considering the price range and the existence of Tempered Glass, we would have liked a slightly softer foam for protection.
The Lian Li O11D Mini comes with a wide range of accessories. It is located outside the case between the two polystyrene blocks. Packed in a brown box you will find another box with all necessary screws and cable ties, a detailed manual with pictures and numerous steel parts. These parts should later allow the variable modification of the back of the case. There are also special pump brackets for water cooling.
Externally, the PC-O11 Dynamic Mini cannot deny its relationship to the PC-O11. The front consists to a large extent of slightly tinted tempered glass and allows an unrestricted view of the interior. The small black stripe on the right side is also made of glass, but has been completely painted, thus covering the area behind the mainboard tray. There are no fan openings at the front. If you remove the lid, the glass window can be taken off towards the top.
The lid, on the other hand, is designed for a high airflow. The aluminium panel has a large fan grille under which a magnetic mesh filter is located. If you remove two knurled screws on the back, the lid can be removed. Corresponding to the front, the right part of the lid is also made of glass. There you can also find the longish I/O-panel. There are two USB 3.0 type A and one USB 3.1 type C connector. In addition, a power button (illuminated in blue) and a HD audio combo port can be found there.
The right side panel of the PC-O11D Mini is completely made of aluminum and has two ventilation grills for the power supply or possible fans. Features include a magnetic dust filter on the inside of both grilles. The connection to the body is made by two knurled screws. This feature does not apply to the left side panel. It is completely made of glass and can only be removed if the cover is removed first. Only then can the pane be pulled out of the holder at the top.
The PC-O11D Mini has four large plastic feet, which are covered with a thin layer of foam rubber for better noise insulation. Otherwise, there is a very large opening on the bottom for fans or radiators. This is covered by a fine dust filter frame ex works. To clean it, simply pull it out to the side.
At first glance, the rear panel shows a common layout for cube cases. On the left side you find the mounting place for the SFX or SFX-L power supply and underneath a removable panel behind which two HDD frames for 3.5″ HDDs are hidden. The right side offers space for a 120 millimeter fan, the I/O shield and for up to seven expansion cards. These are perforated and reusable. If you look a little closer, you can see numerous additional thumbscrews on the back. What this is all about, however, we will only reveal on the next page.
The first optical and haptic impression of the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini is very good. Due to the combination of aluminum and tempered glass, the case looks and feels very high quality. The manufacturing quality and lacquering are also on a high level.
As you would expect from a modern case, the interior is very spacious and typically a cube case is divided vertically into two areas. However, since the front area offers the larger features, we will take a look behind the mainboard tray in the first step.
If we remove the rear side panel, we are greeted directly by an HDD mount for two 2.5″ data carriers. In addition, a plate with the logos of the manufacturer and the professional overclocker Roman “der8auer” Hartung was attached to this mount. After removing these frames by means of a knurled screw, the mounting place for the SFX or SFX-L power supply and a solid HDD cage for two 3.5″ or 2.5″ HDDs appear behind it. Both the cage and the frames are completely made of steel and have decoupling elements. The chamber also offers plenty of space to hide superfluous cables and practical Velcro cable ties.
The right side of the rear panel offers plenty of space and mounting rails for fans or radiators. The maximum space here is for a 280 millimeter radiator. Air is supplied through the filtered opening in the side panel.
But now let’s turn to the large main chamber. This chamber has a lot of space for hardware. The mainboard tray on the left side is made of steel and in its standard form offers space for ATX mainboards. However, the mainboard tray is not of normal size ex works and therefore has only six instead of nine spacers. But three more spacers can be added via a rail included in the delivery. The right end of the tray is angled to the back and has two large and rubberized cable management openings.
But a special feature of the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini is its modularity. By adapting the back of the case, mainboards with different form factors can be installed without the case looking empty. A configuration with seven slots for ATX mainboards, one with five slots for micro ATX mainboards and a last one with three slots for mini-ITX mainboards are possible. Depending on the constellation there is then more space for radiators under or above the mainboard. This solution looks very well thought-out and offers maximum flexibility.
Overall, we like the internal structure of the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini very much. The manufacturing quality is very high and especially the flexibility has impressed us. However, we find it a bit of a pity that the maximum SFX-L power supply is supported. Many prospective buyers probably only own one ATX power supply in most cases and would have to spend additional money.
System construction in the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini
Now we come to the system installation. As hardware we use a AMD Ryzen 5 1400* on a MSI B350 PC Mate with 16GB Crucial Ballistix Sport LT grey DDR4-2666. The Ryzen is cooled by an EKL Alpenföhn Matterhorn Pure and is overclocked to 3.8 GHz (1.25V). For the image output a GTX 1060 6GB from Gigabyte AORUS is responsible. Power is supplied by the fully modular Corsair SF Series SF450 with an efficiency of 80 Plus Gold.
The installation and cabling of all components was done very quickly. Due to the generous space available, there is enough room for large hands to work. Due to the 70 millimetre space behind the mainboard tray, all superfluous cables can be sensibly hidden. However, since our power supply is fully modular, we were able to do without many cables from the outset. The fact that SFX power supplies usually only have quite short cables at their disposal did not bother us during installation. Due to the upper position of the power supply, all components could be reached without problems even with the short cables. It should also be pointed out that the cables for the I/O panel were designed very thin and filigree. This serves mainly to improve the optics.
The PC-O11D Mini also performs very well in terms of hardware compatibility. If you rely on air cooling, the CPU cooler must not be larger than 175 millimeters and the graphics card must not be longer than 395 millimeters. The power supply must not exceed the SFX-L form factor and a length of 165 millimeters. However, the PC-O11D Mini is also optimally designed for the installation of a water cooling system. There is room for up to three radiators in the interior and there are special accessories and mounting points for corresponding pumps.
In any case, mounting the hard drives requires the use of tools. Large hard disks are screwed to the steel frame and pushed back into the cage. The decoupling should be done with thin plastic or rubber rails. 2.5″ devices are pushed into the corresponding holder on the vertical HDD frame via rubber rings.
Finally we come to the temperatures reached in the Lian Li O11D Mini. During the stress test, Prime95 and FurMark were run at a room temperature of 20°C for 15 minutes. In addition, the test was performed with two different fan constellations (series, 3x 120 millimeter fans).
|CPU: 50% PWM (1050 rpm)
GPU: 50% PWM (1650 rpm)
1x 120 mm(standard equipment)
|CPU: 88 °C
GPU: 73 °C
|CPU: 50% (1050 rpm)
GPU: 50% PWM (1650 rpm)
3x Arctic P12 to 50% PWM (1050 rpm)
|CPU: 73 °C
GPU: 64 °C
As expected, it does get quite warm in the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini without a fan. However, if you install two or three fans, the temperatures can be drastically reduced and we achieve acceptable values for an overclocked system. If you install fans or a radiator on the side, you should take care to decouple them. In our case the fans have transmitted slight vibrations to the whole body due to their screw connection.
Conclusion on the Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini
Lian Li created it together with novel “the8bauer” Hartung created a very interesting and most flexible Cube case. The PC-O11 Dynamic Mini could convince us in many places. First of all, there is the reasonable combination of aluminum, tempered glass and steel, which creates a very beautiful look. Even though we didn’t use any RGB elements in our test, this case is clearly suitable as a show case to showcase the hardware perfectly.
We were also convinced by the generous space and the high flexibility of the mainboard tray. So it doesn’t matter if you want to install an ATX, micro-ATX or mini-ATX mainboard in the PC-O11 Dynamic Mini. The accessories included in the scope of delivery always offer the right components for every solution and therefore the interior never looks empty or unfinished.
Like its bigger brother, the Mini also offers a high compatibility for water cooling. The interior can accommodate up to three large radiators at the same time without colliding with each other. In addition, Lian Li also includes several mounting frames for the installation of the pump and expansion tank.
There are only a few things that are not so good. Due to the narrower footprint the case unfortunately loses the compatibility to the normal ATX power supplies and even if there is a very good selection of SFX and SFX-L power supplies available in the meantime, owners of an ATX power supply have to dig a little deeper into their pockets. Also it would have been nice if you could change the color of the LED on the power button.
But all in all Lian Li can convince us with the PC-O11 Dynamic Mini and therefore gets a clear recommendation to buy.
Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini
Value for money
The Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic Mini is a highly flexible show case with plenty of space for a custom water cooling system. Optics, workmanship and the general features are also convincing.