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I found the best (and only sensible) PC case for the RTX 4090

The Hyte Y40 PC case sitting on a coffee table.
Hyte Y40
MSRP $150.00
“Tailor-made for massive GPUs like the RTX 4090, the Hyte Y40 case is an obvious choice for high-end PC builds.”
Pros
  • Tool-less entry
  • Fantastic building experience
  • Two included 120mm fans
  • Included PCIe 4.0 riser cable
  • Easily supports the RTX 4090
  • Excellent thermal management
Cons
  • Vertical GPU mount isn't for everyone
  • Limited cable-management options
  • No 360mm support on the side

Finding a proper PC case for extra-large GPUs like the RTX 4090 has become damn near impossible. We’ve all seen this monstrous graphics card being haphazardly stuffed into PC cases left and right, resulting in melted power cables and potential fires.

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So, when I came across the Hyte’s new Y40 case, I immediately identified it as uniquely suited to house a large graphics card, and I decided to base my next PC build around how well it could manage the RTX 4090 in particular. As I discovered, the combination of its signature “fish tank” design (borrowed from the wildly popular Y60 case) and its manageable $150 price make it really the only sensible PC case if you own an RTX 4090.

Hyte Y40 specs

  Hyte Y40
Dimensions (LxWxH) 439mm x 240mm x 472mm
Motherboard support ATX, mATX, ITX
Power supply support ATX, up to 224mm in length
GPU support Up to 422mm length, 94mm height (80mm or less recommended)
Fan support 2x 120mm/140mm (side), 3x 120mm (top), 1x 120mm (rear), 1x 120mm (bottom)
Included fans 2x 120mm
Radiator  120mm, 240mm, or 360mm (top), 120mm, 140mm, 240mm, or 280mm (side), 120mm (rear)
Max CPU cooler height 183mm
Storage support 1x 3.5-inch HDD or 2x 2.5-inch SDD
Expansion slots Four slots (vertical), six half-height (horizontal)
PCIe riser cable  4.0, included
Dust filters Non-removeable top and side, 2x removable bottom
Front panel connections 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB-C 3.2, 1x 3.5mm mic/audio (splitter included)

Built for the RTX 4090

The Hyte Y60 with an RTX 4090 installed.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The connective tissue to the Y40 is the vertical GPU mount that’s purpose-built for massive graphics cards like the RTX 4090. Like the Y60, this case is designed for a vertical GPU mount. In fact, you can only mount the GPU vertically using the included PCIe 4.0 riser.

The standard PCIe slots for horizontal mounts are only half height. It’s a firm design choice, one that may turn away some builders. But endless expansion cards isn’t the status quo for a gaming PC in 2023. You install a single GPU, one that normally blocks access to other PCIe connections regardless, and rely on your motherboard for sound, Bluetooth, and other connections.

There are some folks who need more space, and for that bunch, the Hyte Y40 isn’t for you. The compromise here opens up a lot of possibilities, though, namely four vertical GPU slots. The RTX 4090 is no longer pressed up against the side of the case as it is in the Y60, giving the card plenty of room to breath.

More important, this vertical design gives the card plenty of space to not burn up. In my previous Lian Li PC-011 Dynamic, I had to stuff the RTX 4090’s power connector against the side panel and hope that it wouldn’t melt up. Not in the Hyte Y40, where you’re afforded ample room to let the cable hang out.

Of course, the Hyte Y40 didn’t suddenly invent the concept of a vertical GPU mount. Dozens of cases, including the Corsair 5000D and Fractal Design Meshify 2, come with vertical GPU brackets. Still, these mounts are usually limited to two slots, you have to shop for a PCIe riser cable that can cost $50 or more, and you have to figure out a way to mount the cable to your case. Not everyone wants a vertical GPU, but for those who do, the Hyte Y40 comes tailor-made.

Less is better

Hyte Y40 case sitting on a coffee table.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

It’s clear that Hyte took the opportunity to expand on the design of the Y60, and in many ways, the Y40 is less of a younger sibling and more of an evolution. After having built two PCs in the Y60 over the holidays for friends, I realized how the Y40 streamlines the build process and enhances the original design.

Gone are the two thumbscrews that held on the side panel, and in their place are a series of clips to hold each of the panels on. Taking apart the case is completely tool-less — snap off the top panel, the two side panels, and enjoy unfettered access to your PC in less than 30 seconds. This is something you only see on prebuilt desktops like the HP Omen 45L.

A hand removing the side panel on the Hyte Y40.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

It’s a joy to build in, not only because of the minimal number of screws you have to handle, but also because of the internal design of the case. For instance, the top portion of the case where you can mount up to a 360mm all-in-one liquid cooler blocks access to critical motherboard connections like your 8-pin CPU power and CPU fan header. In a case like the NZXT H510 (and most mid-tower designs, for that matter), you have to juggle a shifting order of operations to ensure you don’t lock yourself out of putting the finishing touches on your build. Not with the Y40.

There’s a cutout specifically for these headers, allowing me to slip my fingers in and access these cables even after my cooler has been installed. Similarly, routing front panel and USB connections to the bottom of the motherboard is usually a tedious process, but the Y40 provides generous cutouts to pass the cables through, as well as a unified front panel connector rather than the disparate mess you traditionally find for the audio jack, power button, and LED.

Room for improvement

The Hyte Y40 is the case to beat in 2023, but that’s despite it still having some clear issues. Chief among them is cable management. There are various tie-down points to clean up cables once your build is done, as well as generous routing channels. They don’t come with the rubber covering featured in the Y60 and cases like the NZXT H510, though, and end up rather aimlessly hanging out no matter how good your cable management is.

Fan support is a bit off as well. Unlike the Y60 that has dual 120mm intakes at the bottom, you can only mount a single 120mm fan in the bottom of the Y40. Hyte includes a preinstalled fan in this slot, along with a 120mm exhaust in the rear.

On the side, you can install two 120mm or 140mm fans, either alone or as part of a liquid-cooling setup, and up top, you have space for up to three 120mm fans or a 360mm radiator. More space under the case or on the side would go a long way, both for mounting a 360mm on the side and ensuring you can have clear airflow paths throughout the case.

As it stands, it’s hard to think of another configuration that has two intakes on the side and three exhausts up top.

CPU cooler installed in the Hyte Y40 case.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

You could throw a fan into every spot and hope for the best, but you probably shouldn’t. Every inch of the Hyte Y40 that isn’t covered in tempered glass is ventilated, leading to an audible hum of fans even when your PC is idle.

The upside is that you don’t get a big ramp-up in noise when all of your fans decide to spin up. Compared to my open-air Praxis Wetbench, the RTX 4090 and Intel Core i9-13900K installed in the Hyte Y40 didn’t get any hotter. The case deals with thermals exceptionally well despite having two glass panels; it’s just a bit noisier as a result.

SSD bracket for the Hyte Y40 case.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Finally, there’s storage space. The Y40 includes a bracket in the rear that supports either a single 3.5-inch HDD or two 2.5-inch SSDs. There’s a missed opportunity on the top of the PSU basement for more 2.5-inch SSD support, but it’s not a big deal. Between space for two SSDs and M.2 slots on your motherboard, I don’t imagine most builds will run into storage issues.

The Hyte Y40 PC case sitting on a table.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

There are some downsides to the Hyte Y40, but they’re vastly outweighed by how much the case has to offer. It provides the Instagram aesthetic that PC builders salivate over, and without sacrificing thermals or the building experience in the process. PC cases are a dime a dozen, but in the 2023 of endless tempered glass and massive graphics cards, the Hyte Y40 is one of the only cases that manages to make a splash.

Jacob Roach
Lead Reporter, PC Hardware
Jacob Roach is the lead reporter for PC hardware at Digital Trends. In addition to covering the latest PC components, from…
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