Lian Li O11 Air Mini Review
Published: 10th September 2021 | Source: OC3D Internal Testing | Price: £109.99 |
Thermal performance is an essential factor for any PC case. Your system may look fantastic and seem silent from the outside, but all of that is for nought if your PC has the internal temperature of an oven. Your PC case needs enough airflow for your components to remain cool under load and to prevent any form of thermal throttling. For our test, we used the following hardware using fixed fan speeds (so that only the case and its included fans can influence thermal performance).
Lian Li O11 Air Mini
Intel i9-9700K @4.8GHz at 1.2V
ASUS ROG Strix Z370-F Gaming @ 100% Current Capacity/ LL lvl16
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition @ 9V via Fan Speed Reducer
Nvidia GTX 980 Reference @ 60% Fixed Fan Speed
Corsair LP Vengiance LP (Grey) @ 3200MHz
Corsair MP500 M.2 NVMe SSD
Corsair RM550X Power Supply
The graph below showcases Delta temperatures with a controlled ambient temperature of 20 degrees Celsius.
Max Fan RPM Test
Lian Li's O11 Air Mini is a fairly quiet case, even when its stock fans are running at their highest RPMs. 1300 RPM isn't that fast in the world of fans, and that is great news for anyone who values silence. Too many cases make up for their poor airflow design with faster fan RPMs, with the most criminal of these manufacturers offering 2,000+ RPM fans.
Lian Li knows that they don't need crazy RPMs to deliver decent airflow. That said, the O11 Air Mini could benefit from having more fans added to it, as could most £100ish cases.
1000 RPM Fan Test
The cooling performance of the Lian Li O11 is not near the top of our charts, but it doesn't need to be. This case ships with three fans while many of the others below ship with many more. Add a few fans to the base of the O11 Air, and you will see some better results. It is that simple. Lian Li could have shipped this case with more fans, but that could make the case more expensive and would push users down certain cooling avenues, hurting the case's versatiliy.
600 RPM Fan Test
At 600 RPM, the Lian Li O11 Air Mini failed our cooling test. 600 RPM is a low RPM value, and we have deliberately set up our case test system to reach these thermals when inadequate airflow is achieved. We have seen many other cases fail this same test at this RPM, and while a fail is a fail, the fans with this case are incredibly quiet at higher RPMs, which means that most users will not need to run these fans at 600 RPM.
Again, adding fans to the bottom of this case will add to the system's overall airflow. Users of this case will need to think about their airflow to get the best thermal results from the O11 Air Mini, and that is not necessarily a bad thing.