Hardware manufacturer Cooler Master is well-known for its desktop PC cases, CPU coolers, and power supplies, but its latest case targets a much smaller computer: the Raspberry Pi 4.
It’s called the Cooler Master Pi Case 40, and described as a “travel case for Pi enthusiasts, by Pi enthusiasts.” A Kickstarter to help fund the case and figure out what Pi owners would like to see in terms of accessories and compatibility, reached its funding target in the first hour. It didn’t take long for the total to soar past $100,000, showing there’s a lot of interest for a versatile travel case.
The Pi Case 40 is manufactured from aluminum and fitted with a TPU bumper for additional protection. A heatsink forms part of the shell, which Cooler Master claims offers “4x times the amount of surface area compared to similarly sized competitors,” and allows the Pi boards to “run under load for much longer periods of time.” That’s especially important for the hot-running Raspberry Pi 4 while also allowing for completely silent operation and the potential for overclocking.
As well as being compatible with both VESA and wall mounting systems, Cooler Master integrated a power button so you don’t need to unplug the power cable to turn your Pi on and off. If you don’t want a power button, it can be remapped to do something else. The board connectors all remain accessible with the GPIO redirected to the side and protected under an opening side flap. Cooler Master is also promising unrestricted Wi-Fi and Bluetooth reception thanks to the unique design of the bottom panel, which “is raised higher in proximity of the antennas and it locks to the aluminum core at an angle, thus preventing signal losses.”
So why class this as a travel case? Cooler Master has focused on durability, with all the materials used not impacted by being left outside. The case uses a mix or powder coating and baking to give it a stronger surface finish, which means there’s much less chance of it picking up any scratches. You should be able to confidently throw the Pi Case 40 in a bag, or a pocket with your keys.
Pledging $52 on Kickstarter secures you a two-pack of Pi Case 40s, or you can get the case and a 4GB Raspberry Pi 4 board for $84. If you’d rather wait until this is a real, shipping product, there’s some potentially good news. Cooler Master intends to open source all the schematics and the 3D model for the case so anyone can download and use them. If you have the right tools, it will be possible to make one yourself. The Kickstarter is running for another 27 days, giving you ample time to decide whether to buy now or wait for the schematics.