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Jonsbo N2 in the test, stylish housing for DIY NAS systems

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Jonsbo N2 in the test, stylish housing for DIY NAS systems

With the N2, Jonsbo offers an extremely unusual case. The N2 is a “NAS” or home server case.

It has 5 hot swap 3.5 inch hard drive bays in its belly. This is something extremely rare.

This is combined with a mini-ITX mainboard and an SFX power supply. Let’s take a look at the Jonsbo N2 in the test!

At this point, many thanks to CaseKing for providing the N2 for this test.

Jonsbo N2 im Test

The Jonsbo N2 is clearly a “NAS” case. This measures 222.5 x 224 x 222.5 mm, of which an estimated 80% of the space is taken up by the hard drive bays and the power supply area.

The housing is divided into two areas. We have a removable cover under which the mainboard can be installed.

The lower area, in which the hard drives and the power supply are installed, can be accessed via the removable front and back.

The exterior of the housing is made entirely of metal. The workmanship quality and feel is excellent!

Hot swap bays

The most important feature of the N2 are the hot swap slots. We have 5x 3.5 inch hot-swap slots with a corresponding backplane on the front under a magnetic cover.

To mount the hard drives, you have to screw on special rubber knobs that allow the drives to be inserted.

The backplane has 5x SATA ports on the back as well as two IDE power connections and a fan connection.

Inserting the hard drives works better than I would have expected given the very simple construction! The hard drives are also quite well decoupled from the case.

Front IO

In addition to a power switch, the Jonsbo N2 has a USB 3.0 port, a USB C port and a 3.5mm audio output on the front. So far so good, but the cables hang directly in the area of ​​the mainboard.

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Unfortunately, the cables cannot be removed “non-destructively” if you don’t need the front IO.

Mini-ITX motherboards and CPU coolers (max 65 mm)

The mainboard is installed in the upper area of ​​the N2. To do this you have to remove the cover (4 screws).

Only Mini-ITX motherboards fit into the Jonsbo N2. No problem so far, but we have a maximum radiator height of 65 mm! Accordingly, the upper area is very narrow, which severely limits cooler compatibility.

On the expansion card side there is 1x half-height PCIe slot.

SFX (L) power supplies

On the power supply side, the N2 supports SFX or SFX-L power supplies. In my case a be quiet! SFX-L Power 500W SFX-L can be easily installed.

However, depending on where the 24-pin connection is on your motherboard, the cable could be a bit short. I also noticed this problem with a Corsair power supply.

Good cooling for the hard drives, moderate for the mainboard

There is a 120 mm fan on the back to cool the hard drives. The included fan is “acceptable”, but comparatively loud.

I would probably replace this fan (although it is a slim fan, normal fans do NOT fit!), but in principle it is enough to cool the HDDs well. In my test, the HDDs only reached around 38 degrees under constant full load, which is completely ok.

What the Jonsbo N2 doesn’t have, however, is a fan in the upper area of ​​the case!

Although the lid of the case has some mesh elements, there is no fan inlet/outlet. If you have a CPU that produces a lot of waste heat, I could imagine that quite high temperatures could occur here.

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This is also my biggest criticism.

For this test I used a very simple mainboard with an integrated 10W CPU, so temperatures weren’t a problem, but with 45W or something similar I assume it will be different.

Conclusion

The Jonsbo N2 is an almost unique case! There are few alternatives in stores if you are looking for a compact case for a DIY NAS with hot swap 3.5 inch bays.

The case does what it promises. It’s really stylish and wonderfully compact. The hot swap system also works well and the cooling of the hard drives was sufficient.

However, this also has weak points.

There is no fan position in the upper part of the case! The fan for the HDDs must be slim. Front IO cables cannot be removed.

I combined the Jonsbo N2 with a very simple motherboard with an Intel Celeron CPU. Accordingly, the temperatures in the upper area of ​​the case were not a problem.

However, if you try to fit a more powerful CPU here, it could be problematic because there is no fan position here. All we have here are some passive air vents.

The “slim” fan for the HDDs is also a bit on the loud side. So I replaced it, but this led to slightly higher HDD temperatures.

However, functionally and from the point of view of workmanship and feel, there is nothing wrong with the Jonsbo N2! This is a beautiful and quality built case.

Unless you’re using a CPU that’s too extreme and want to build a small DIY NAS, the N2 is the nicest case currently on the market!

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