July 31, 2014

Unboxing & Review: Bitfenix Neos

When you're building a PC on a tight budget, some would disregard the type of chassis they'd get until the end after they have decided on the internal parts. Quite often, they'll be scratching their heads on which to buy with the little budget that's left that they would have to sacrifice quality and design. Well, thanks to the folks at BitFenix, the Neos is here to address those very issues.

A big thanks to the folks at BitFenix and Inter-Asia Technology for the star of today's article. Let's take a look at BitFenix's take at the budget chassis scene. SRP for the Neos is RM169 for the non-window version and additional RM10 for the window version.



The Neos is  packed in the usual brown cardboard box with a simple display of logo and the chassis name at the front.

At the back, you'll find diagrams of the chassis within, highlighting key points of the Neos.

Packaging is standard with polystyrene foam encasing the top and bottom of the Neos with a clear plastic wrapped around it for protection against dust and scratches during transport. As you all can see, this is the windowed version of the Neos.

Included Accessories

In terms of accessories, the Neos comes with a user manual, an expansion plate, some cable ties and a bag of screws.


Taking a step back after removing the protective layers, the Neos is really a looker with the bright coloured front panel and clean exterior. As this is BitFenix's budget line of chassis, the Neos doesn't come with the Softouch coating that we're so accustomed to relate with the brand. Yes they also shipped us a window-less version, but we'll get to that in a while.

At the front of the Neos is covered with the coloured mesh with dual external 5.25" bays and a BitFenix logo near the bottom.

A closer inspection reveals that the mesh is circular and has quite the big opening which should provide sufficient airflow for intake.

One thing to note is that the front panel of the Neos are interchangeable with one another and is available in 10 configurations to choose from.

BitFenix is also kind enough to ship us an extra windowed side panel. Just to show that you could easily get one via BitFenix should the two window versions (Black/Gold & White/Purple) doesn't suit your taste.

As seen here, now we have a White/Blue window version of the Neos ;) saves you from having to buy two chassis or mod just to get the windowed side panel ;) and yes as you might've guessed, the same sidepanel accessory will fit on the BitFenix Comrade as well.

Right at the top edge of the front panel are where you'll find the Power and Reset switches, Audio and Microphone ports, Power and HDD LEDs and a USB2.0 and USB3.0 port.

Nothing much at the top here, BitFenix went with a clean top instead of fan mounts and ventilations.

The back of the Neos are pretty standard with I/O knockout area, dual grometted holes for watercooling tubes, a 120mm exhaust fan mount, seven expanson slots and a bottom mounted PSU bay.

The 2 holes for external custom watercooling setup.

The expansion slots are covered by a plastic cover to make it look neat on the outside. Note that the slot covers are the breakaway type that are not reusable after it is removed except the first one which is present inside the accessory box. According to BitFenix, the reason for this implementation is because most  people will be using the first slot anyway.

Tilting the chassis to one side reveals a simple layout at the bottom as well with four feet and a dust filter over the PSU intake area.

The feet are plastic as opposed to rubber but that's to be expected from a budget chassis like this.

Dust filter for PSU air intake isn't something commonly seen on budget chassis, except for the BitFenix Neos.

Internal Features

Now here is what surprised us. Despite being a budget series the Neos still includes dust filters for dual 120mm fans and made the I/O separate from the front panel. This is a feature that's usually implemented on higher-end chassis.

All the openings on the meshed panels also have their own foam filters giving a dual-layered dust protection to the Neos.

The breakaway type optical drive bay covers are made reusable so that it can be screwed back in place in case if you feel like having them back.

The air filter is held on with four clips on the sides which eases the removal of the filter. Note that BitFenix didn't just slap a third party piece but instead went to the trouble of creating the dust filter just for the Neos.

Unlike most traditional budget chassis, these extra holes allows air to move through the chassis easier for better overall airflow and lower temperature.

A single 120mm LED fan is included at the front intake with the option to mount another 120mm fan. These are screwed right on the dust filter that allows easy access to the fans later on.

Before we dive into the main chamber of the Neos, let us direct our attention to the windowed side-panel. It's a basic large window which is good but also means that the side-panel will be wobbly.

Good news for modders is that the window can be removed by undoing a couple of metal clips on the inside.

Back to the chassis, we see that BitFenix have opted for tool-less 2.5" and 3.5" drive cages. This will grant more clearance for long GPUs.

The front I/O connectors are black, a feature that's a rarity on most budget chassis.

A 120mm Spectre fan is also included at the rear exhaust.

An inside view of the ventilated expansion slots.

PSU bay is a little disappointing as it doesn't have rubber mounts to dampen any vibrations that may come from the PSU. We suppose that it is to be expected judging from the aggressive pricing of the Neos.

A large CPU cutout is present in the motherboard tray and some cable management holes near the drive cages. There is also not much need of motherboard stand-offs as these are built onto the motherboard tray, a nice feature that we last saw in the Corsair Carbide 330R reviewed a while back.

Tool-less mechanism for the dual 5.25" bays is also a nice addition, kudos to BitFenix for supplying them.

The 2.5" drive cage will house 3 drives via the plastic sleds provided.

These are not exactly tool-less so you will need to keep a screwdriver handy to secure the drives onto the sleds.

You'll also get to fit three 3.5" drives in the lower cage.

This time, it's tool-less, just expand the plastic caddys and snap the drives into place for a secure fit. Note that you'll be able to mount 2.5" here as well by securing them with screws.

Not a whole lot going on at the back of the motherboard tray.

There's hardly space behind the motherboard tray to route cables, maybe only the EPS 8-pin should be here.

Space behind the drive cages should be sufficient, thus it's advised to route the PSU cables from here.

The BitFenix Neos with all the essential parts installed.

Despite of being a little tiny in size, we're able to fit a whopping high end ASUS R9 290X Matrix Platinum and a be quiet! Shadow Rock Slim in the BitFenix Neos.

Performance Test 

Test Rig Configuration
CPU Cooler
be quiet! Shadow Rock Slim
I7 4790K 
ASUS Maximus Gene VI
Corsair Vengeance Pro 4GB x 2
Primary Hard Drive
Crucial M500 120GB
Power Supply
Silverstone ST60F-P 600W 80 Plus Bronze Certified
Bitfenix Neos
Graphics Card
ASUS R9 290X Matrix Platinum

Moving on with our performance test, we're using the CPU stress test utility Prime95 with the option 'In-place large FFTs' and GPU stress test utility FurMark with its Furry Donut stress test for maximum heat output from both the CPU and GPU. Our room temperature throughout the test is 30ÂșC in average and the stress test is repeated for several times in order to get a stable temperature reading. The final result is presented in the following graph:

Do note that it is very unlikely for both components to hit this temperature reading in most of real world usage (gaming, office work, music, video,etc) as both CPU/GPU are being stressed to the limit only for performance testing purposes.

Despite of having only one non-performance fan for each intake and exhaust, the temperatures we're getting here is pretty reasonable. Adding some extra fans or replacing the existing fans with high performance fans is recommended to improve the air circulation in the chassis for better results / lower temperatures.

Final Thoughts

Aside of its less solid construction, the BitFenix Neos beats a lot of budget oriented chassis when it comes to appearance and hardware compatibility - dust filters, high airflow design, good hardware compatibility, windowed side panel, etc. If you're looking for a rich featured budget chassis, the BitFenix Neos is a worthy chassis to consider for.

  • Good appearance and features 
  • Compatible with wide range of components
  • Good appearance
  • Good airflow
  • Dust filters included for PSU air intake and chassis front intake 
  • Tool-free drive bay
  • Windowed side panel is available to purchase from BitFenix Parts Store
  • Affordable
  • Limited space at the back of the motherboard for cable routing
  • PCIe expansion slot plastic cover is not compatible with non-reference graphics card
  • Less solid construction compared to other BitFenix budget chassis
With each and every aspect considered, the BitFenix Noes is no doubt worthy budget oriented chassis that scores our Tech Critter Silver award and Recommended award.