NZXT halts sale of case that looks like an Xbox Series X because it can catch on fire

NZXT H1 Case
(Image credit: NZXT)

A pair of screws that attach the PCI Express riser cable inside NZXT's H1 chassis, a case that bears a strong resemblance to the Xbox Series X, can cause an electrical short and pose a fire hazard. As a result, NZXT has temporarily stopped selling the chassis and has advised its reseller partners to do the same.

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Incidentally, the issue came to light a couple of months ago, with a Reddit user claiming they saw smoke come from their H1 case when first powering up their PC. Then a few weeks ago, another Reddit user with the same chassis said they saw "flames come out of the case." For anyone new to PC building, seeing smoke billow from your system is bad, and fire is really bad.

These things are also rare. Anecdotally, in all my years of building PCs, I've only come close to setting my system ablaze twice. And by "close" I mean not really all that close, but they were hairy moments at the time. The first was when, as an inexperienced teenager, I dropped a screw into a running system. This caused a spark and a loud ZAP, and killed the motherboard. My folks weren't really happy about that. Then many years later, one of the Molex connectors on a cheap PSU I was using started to smoke and charred. I don't use generic PSUs anymore.

As for the H1, it's actually a really nice case, when it's not catching on fire, that is. We reviewed the H1 in May and found it to be "genuinely great," and not just because our test PC didn't burst into a ball of flames. At the time, we had no idea it was a potential fire hazard.

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The design calls for the graphic card to be install vertically in its own little compartment. That is where the PCIe riser cable comes into play, and where the problem exists.

According to NZXT, the issue has affected less than ten H1 cases so far. Having identified the problem, it is sending out repair kits to H1 owners, which contain "two new screws that address the issue along with instructions to replace them."

"While we have identified this issue as a low probability occurrence, the absolute safest approach is to power-down your H1 until a kit is sent out to you and the repair is made," NZXT said.

NZXT is also working with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), presumably on an official recall. 

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).