Thermaltake Element Q

Small case for mini-ITX motherboards
Author: Aki Korhonen
Published: 05.11.2009
Manufacturer: Thermaltake
Product Group: System enclosures
In English In English
Suomeksi Suomeksi


Mini-ITX motherboards are a good base for building small home theater computers, home servers or just small computers for basic use. New mini-ITX motherboards have low power consumption and you can get them with passively cooled CPU for quiet operation. This time we have a (almost) fanless case from Thermaltake's Element Q VL5000 series under some testing. It's a compact case designed mainly for mini-ITX boards with small heatsinks (Atom boards for example).

The case is the smallest case we've reviewed so far if we compare the reviewed cases by calculating their volume. SilverStone Sugo SG05 reviewed a bit over month ago measured 222 mm * 176 mm * 276 mm (10.8 liters), Shuttle SB62G2 XPC (well, it was a barebone but I'll include it here because of the size) reviewed in 2003 was 300 mm * 200 mm * 200 mm (12 liters) and Thermaltake Element Q reviewed now is 330 mm * 220 mm * 130 mm (9.4 liters).


Thermaltake Element Q

The case comes in a glossy surfaced cartboard box that has a photo of the case printed on the side and specifications on one side. On the back there are more smaller external and internal photos. The case is packed in a plastic bag and secured in place with usual styrofoam pieces as you might expect.



Model No.

VL52021N2U (200W PSU)
VL52021N2E (200W PSU with APFC)


Plastic front panel, SGCC body [Black]





 Drive Bay

5.25" x 1 / 3.5" x 1
3.5" x 1

 Cooling System

Air holes
Air holes

 Expansion Slot


 Front I/O Port

USB2.0 port x 2
HD Audio x 1
MIC x 1

 Power Supply

Thermaltake SL-8220SFX (220W)

 Expansion Card

1x Standard size

 Net Weight

2.89 kg


330 mm (D) x 220 mm (W) x 130 mm (H)



The case is available in two models where the case itself is the same but the other model comes with a PSU with APFC (Active Power Factor Correction). Judging by the markings on the PSU (doesn't say anything about APFC) that came with the case, the reviewed model is VL52021N2U (no APFC). Altho the PSU is marked as 200W in the specifications on the box, the PSU in the reviewed case is 220W.




Thermaltake Element Q

The case comes with a pretty usual bundle. You'll get a user manual and a warranty sheet, a power cable, four rubber feet (there are marked places for these on the bottom and on the left side of the case), a bag of screws for installation, one zip tie, small optional speaker for your motherboard and installation rails for a hard drive.


Thermaltake Element Q

The user manual has the pinouts for the USB and audio connectors so it's good to check them against the pinouts of your motherboard (you'll find them in the user manual). The pinouts should be quite standard but it's worth a check. In this case the pinouts were the same.

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