Lian-Li is making desks again but unlike the last round the new trio is quite affordable. As you would expect from the case maker, the new PK-01, -01, and Q1 are solid and well designed.
The three new computer desks are just that, desks that double as computer cases, not the other way around. Lian-Li makes really high quality cases and the desks reflect that ethos. They have really high quality bearings, the drawer slides nicely, and they are solidly built. The glass top is thick and heavy, lifts off but stays put, and nothing feels cheap.
Lian-Li PK-01 and -02 desk/cases
There are three fans on each side, a false back for cable routing, and removable washable filters on each side. In short the trio is everything you expect from a high-end Lian-Li case just in a slightly novel form factor. If you don’t get what we mean by this, just remember that most cases don’t have legs or a keyboard drawer, these do.
The PK-01 is the narrower one in front and it has lots of airflow, drive bays, and mounting spots to build almost any sane system. If you need more than eight slots for example, then this is not the desk for you, that would be the PK-02. The larger version is meant for two systems with mounting brackets to match. One will take a full-sized workstation board, the other a smaller system, but both have eight drive bays per side.
PK-Q1 is the coffee table HTPC Lian-Li desk case
If those are too big for your needs and you just want something to sit by your couch mining Bitcoins that you can also put your feet up on, take a look at the PK-Q1 ‘case’. It is a coffee table sized HTPC case with all the goodies of the larger duo, just smaller. And the legs are shorter. And there isn’t a keyboard tray either. Other than that, it is just as nicely built as the 01 and 02 and sized to put your feet on from the couch.
Two of the three new desk/cases are going to hit the market soon, those would be the PK-01 and -02. They will retail for about $989 and $1189 respectively, the -Q1 is going to follow in a few months so the MSRP hasn’t been set yet. Expect it to be a bit cheaper and make quite a few high-end HTPCs look a lot nicer at the same time.
These cases are really nice but I don’t expect to see very many at retail shops because of the odd form factor. These cases are high quality and high but not out of the ordinary for a premium case price, the Thermaltake Level 10 was $800 and while gorgeous, didn’t include a desk. If you price these Lian-Li cases against a decent desk of similar construction quality, they are downright cheap. I could easily see a PK-02 serving as the test bench in my lab, they are really nice.S|A