Beige computer cases

edited August 2017 in Hardware
Anybody know if there is a company out there that still makes the classic beige computer cases we all know and love? I'd like to build a computer into a classic-style case.

I thought about taking the guts out of an old PC from a flea market or something, but if there's something new out there, I think I'd rather just buy a new one so I know more about what I'm getting before I buy it.


  • I'd be interested in another good beige ATX case myself.

    The problems I have run in to:

    Even though new old stock ones turn up on eBay now and then, older cases usually have insufficient ventilation. Specifically they have no vent over the CPU, and usually only a puny vent on the back behind the CPU.

    Most of the ones I have seen also skimp on drive bays. I'd want at least 4 5.25" HH bays, plus a couple of 3.5" bays.

    On eBay they never say what the cases are made of. Personally, I prefer a good steel case. I should be able to hit it with my fist and not have it crumple like a soda can.

    Should accommodate full ATX, not some wimpy microscopic board.

    General no nonsense. No fucking blue/ultrawhite LEDs or back lights. No crazy compartments or access covers. USB ports and Reset right on the front. Case must accommodate securing/screwing in each expansion card individually (I have one that uses a bar to secure all at the same time or nothing, murder to use as a test machine)

    Honestly, I don't understand what the obsession is with making everything black - other than it matches the Chinese black sludge everything is made of.
  • Black is a neutral colour that ages pretty well and fits into most locations. It looks nice too. I built my dual P2 machine into a "modern" (read: 2003) black case and it looks nice.

    As for modern cases: Full ATX cases usually come with a shitload of bays, especially internal ones. (I prefer building micro-ATX size, and nowadays mini-ITX gives you pretty much everything you want since most stuff is on-board or USB.) Pretty much every case comes with 2xUSB, mic, speaker, and USB 3 ports on the front. Blue LEDs are indeed crazy, but easy to fix. Mostly anything above 99$ is guaranteed to be steel.
  • I'm sure something exists out there, but nothing I know of offhand. There's a lot of new silver cases and occasionally you see a few white ones, but not usually with a simple design like the computers of old. It's a pretty niche market.

    Best you can do is hit up eBay and see if you can find someone selling just a case. If you can't find that, then you'll probably need to do like you said and just get an old system and swap out the components.

    Also, you might want to check out local computer stores (assuming you have any still open near you). I used to see tons of old beige cases at stores like that, but that was about 13 years ago, so YMMV.
  • Maybe buy/find a white case and spray-paint it beige?

    @SomeGuy do older computer cases (mid to late 90s) support ATX motherboards?
  • Up where i live there a computer store that takes in recycling and he had a bin filled to the top whit computers from the mid 90's up. I ask him if will sell any of the cases and told me no. That's a shame for that. I have few socket 7 and socket 370 that need cases for them but he won't sell me any and told me to try eBay or get a new computer that i could do more with. I told him i will put dos or windows 98 on them to play old dos and windows games and he goes to me dos is dead. So i just told him ok and left. So that show you how hard it's getting to find older computer stuff.
  • told me to try eBay or get a new computer that i could do more with.
    ... he goes to me dos is dead.
    Typical consumeroid reaction. Incompletely incapable of seeing areas where current stuff actually does less or has taken things away.
    Erito17 wrote:
    @SomeGuy do older computer cases (mid to late 90s) support ATX motherboards?
    ATX was introduced in 1995. Those ATX cases should fit "modern" ATX boards with the above limitations I mentioned (insufficient venting, no front USB ports, and you would probably need a newer power supply, etc).

    Prior to that, generic cases were "AT" form - designed to fit the form factor of the AT or "baby" AT motherboards found in the IBM AT 5170.

    For a quite a while after 1995 there was a mix of AT and ATX cases, although with the right backplate and power adapter an ATX case could technically fit an AT motherboard.
  • My neighbor actually gave me a boatload of P2s and P3s, along with motherboards and a full tower beige ATX case that was pretty much brand new. If I recall correctly, it had only been used for a month or two, perhaps even less. I still have it, and it even has some decent ventilation and fan placements, but no front USB ports or audio ports (can be added with some not-too-difficult modding of one of the front 5.25" bay blanks though). I believe it is from the late 90s, but I can't remember what date was on the side panel. I'd look into finding something like that and using it. See what people around you have in old computers or whatever, and maybe you can get a good case out of something. You never know what you can find right around the corner. For me it was this big case and a crapload of CPUs (including two Pentium Pros).
  • I note there's front panel things for USB and audio if you must have them on an older case. There's also other things too, like SoundBlasters that had exposed pretty much every I/O line to the front panel or multiple memory card readers.
  • Erito17 wrote:
    Maybe buy/find a white case and spray-paint it beige?
    I think that would be doable, although you may want to spray-paint a black case because most modern white cases are gamer-oriented, I suppose spary-painting a basic-looking case like this into a beige case would be a good idea.

    Finding a good beige case is hit or miss for the most part, I've had a hard time finding an affordable case for my P1 rig and the one I've bought needed some work done to it in order to be usable with my components (the old motherboard stand-offs are a pain to insert without cutting a finger or two); I'd suggest an old Dell Dimension or Gateway tower if you plan on resorting to gutting another system for your build project.
  • I'd suggest an old Dell Dimension or Gateway tower if you plan on resorting to gutting another system for your build project.

    That's actually one I was considering gutting. I have a Gateway Select 1100 with NT Server on it that I don't really use much anymore. The reason I haven't is because it's a pretty powerful system for its time and it might be a good system for retro gaming if I put Windows 98 back on it.

    The one thing it's missing is a side vent for the CPU, but it does have a very large vent at the back that I added a big fan to, and I think it has a vent at the front. There might be some way to make it work if I do decide to gut it.
  • I'm a bit late to the party here, but I've not logged in here for weeks so fuck it.

    Found an eBay store ages ago that seems to be selling loads of new old stock stuff, including cases, hell I even found an ISA soundcard on there.
  • Thanks for the link! I'll have to take a closer look later on, but I see a few interesting things at first glance.
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