The NZXT Beta arrives in very standard packaging, with two fitted Styrofoam blocks, one attached to the top of the case and one to the bottom, and a thick plastic bag. The case comes bundled with an accessory box and a thank you note, both located in the case's internal hard-drive rack. Inside the accessory box are the necessary drive mounting systems, screws, and a case speaker. The thank you note guides you to the NZXT website to download the case's manual because one is not included.
The Beta's front fašade seems to take after Darth Vader, with a gated black breathing hole and a simple black design. Behind the grill on the front is a 120mm blue LED fan with filtering. Above the fan, we find the power button (left) and the reset button (right), acting as the power LED and HDD LED, respectively. The power and HDD LEDs light up blue. On top of the case is the front IO panel. There is connectivity for headphones, microphone, two USB ports, and an eSATA port. No Firewire capability is included.
The left side of the case has the capacity to hold two 120mm fans, though none are included. The right side panel is pure black. As this is a budget case, there are no other unexpected or fancy features to be spoken about on the side panels. You might notice that there is no sort of grip on the left side panel to aid in its removal, which turned out to be a little bit frustrating. The fan mounts are a bit set in, though, and can be used for this purpose.
Around back, we find a typical top-mounted PSU layout. There are two soft rubber water cooling pass through holes. The expansion slot covers have a fine mesh texture to allow airflow without too much dust. The fan grill and expansion slot grill are both grids, which is less attractive but easier to cut out and mod if you wish. As you can see, the left side panel is affixed with large thumb-screws, and the right with regular screws. There is no rear fan included.
In the last picture you can see some dents at the bottom of the left side panel. The dents aren't too visible during use, but the significant curvature in the thin metal panel makes it difficult to put the panel back on. Hopefully this is an isolated incident, and this kind of damage is not common during shipping.
Continue on as we take a look at the inside of the Beta.