Our NZXT H2 review sample came in a plain brown box, not the typical glossy coated full color retail container we're used to, however this could easily be pre-production packaging. The case is suspended by hard Styrofoam caps on top and bottom, wrapped in plastic and with a further sheet protecting the glossy finish of the front door panel. While removing the case from the box I noted the sound of loose objects rattling around inside, and after taking it out of the plastic bag I collected a handful of thumbscrews that fell out. With several more still inside the case, I eventually discovered a dozen screws total that had not been secured during shipping. After examining the chassis inside and out, I can conclude that the finish must be pretty durable to have survived this completely unscathed. A top panel cover was also slightly askew.
Aside from the raised, ribbed panels on top of the H2, the exterior appears mostly smooth and featureless. There are no slots or vents in the front or side surfaces, other than a small gap at the very bottom of the door. Also on the bottom of the case is an attached stand that raises the case up off the floor by more than an inch, leaving gaps on either side for airflow.
Moving around to the rear of the case reveals that the entire chassis has been painted black, and that the power supply opening has been placed at the bottom, as has become typical of most tower designs. Here we find stamped openings for a rear 120mm exhaust fan as well as passive venting from the riser covers and adjacent space. Two rubber grommets are present to allow for routing of liquid tubing, as well as a smaller opening at the top for a pass-through USB 3.0 cable. Four thumbscrews still secure both side panels in place, so our loose ones must have come from somewhere else.
The front door seems to be held shut with magnets, and a slight tug at the side opens it to reveal two 120mm fan intakes and three 5¼" drive bays. Sound-deadening foam has been applied to the rear side of the door panel, and we can confirm that only the bottom slot allows for airflow to these intake fans. Both of the fans feature quick-release tabs as well as the 5¼" bay covers to allow for easy removal, although the wireless hot-swap feature of the fans may make finding replacements difficult.
The top of the case houses all of the buttons and connection ports, featuring on/off and reset switches, headphone and microphone jacks, three USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 ports and a three-way (40/70/100%) fan speed selector switch. The top panel cover immediately to the rear of the ports hides a hot-swap SATA hard drive dock, while the panel at the rear covers an empty 140mm fan spot.
Next let's get a look at the interior.