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  1. #1

    Need some assistance building a desktop! (Not a gaming one)

    Hey guys, you were a great help when I was building my desktop but now my friend wants a new desktop too. The requirements are:
    1. Needs to be as small as possible (Though they don't want a tablet)
    2. Need to be able to play basic games only so they don't need a dedicated graphics card (free cell, hearts, maybe a few flash games)
    3. Cheap $300-$400 max cheaper if possible
    4. Would like an SSD (A small one is fine since they will be running Ubuntu and won't have much else on it)
    5. Needs to be able to use the internet (Hard I know)

    I was thinking a Mirco ITX/ATX but I don't have any experience with them so any help would be great. If nothing else some basic tips to help lay the groundwork and I can do the leg work from there.

    Thanks in advance guys!

  2. #2

  3. #3

  4. #4
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($129.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.49 @ Outlet PC)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Sandisk 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
    Case: Inwin IW-BP655.200BL Mini ITX Tower Case w/200W Power Supply ($47.98 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $376.44
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-03 22:21 EDT-0400)

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($129.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.49 @ Outlet PC)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Sandisk 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
    Case: Inwin IW-BP655.200BL Mini ITX Tower Case w/200W Power Supply ($47.98 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $376.44
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-03 22:21 EDT-0400)
    Thanks for the reply! Why do you like the Intel CPU over the AMD APU? Price-wise they seem the same and AMD seems to offer better intergrated graphic solutions.

    Also would this motherboard/cpu be any good? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131843

  6. #6
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Pentium G870 3.1GHz Dual-Core Processor ($84.99 @ Amazon)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H61N-USB3 Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($73.99 @ NCIX US)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($92.99 @ Adorama)
    Case: Inwin BP655.200BL Mini ITX Desktop Case w/200W Power Supply ($53.56 @ Amazon)
    Total: $352.52
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-04 03:42 EDT-0400)

    The reason I favour the Intel over the AMD APUs is that the Motherboards for the ITX format are much more expensive for AMD.

  7. #7
    Dreadlord ItsRedd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($129.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.49 @ Outlet PC)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Sandisk 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
    Case: Inwin IW-BP655.200BL Mini ITX Tower Case w/200W Power Supply ($47.98 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $376.44
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-03 22:21 EDT-0400)
    I'd suggest finding out who the OEM is for that PSU. It's one thing you really don't want to skimp on. Also, wouldn't a B75 be a better choice with that cpu?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    Thanks for the reply! Why do you like the Intel CPU over the AMD APU? Price-wise they seem the same and AMD seems to offer better intergrated graphic solutions.
    If you want iGPU performance, you can spring $10 more for the i3-3225 with Intel HD 4000 which has graphics performance comparable to the A6-5400K listed earlier.

    For flash games, iGPU performance isn't critical. CPU performance is pretty important for flash games though.

    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    Also would this motherboard/cpu be any good? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131843
    The C-60 CPU is exceptionally weak, probably not much more powerful than a tablet CPU. Only enough if running a stripped/efficient OS (not Windows) and tablet-like applications.

    Quote Originally Posted by tenangrychickens View Post
    Ivy Bridge Celeron and Pentium CPUs

    Quote Originally Posted by Itsredd View Post
    I'd suggest finding out who the OEM is for that PSU. It's one thing you really don't want to skimp on.
    Without a GPU, power consumption at the wall isn't going to be more than 75W. Alternative: Seasonic TFX PSU (maybe wait for it to go on sale?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Itsredd View Post
    Also, wouldn't a B75 be a better choice with that cpu?
    H77 motherboard comes with WIFI. Assumed thats what the OP meant by needs to connect to the internet.

  9. #9
    Dreadlord ItsRedd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    H77 motherboard comes with WIFI. Assumed thats what the OP meant by needs to connect to the internet.
    I assume a B75 board with external wifi adapter can be much cheaper.

    If it needs to be small for portability, I understand wanting WiFi. But, if it'll be stationary, he should plug a cable in it anyway.

  10. #10
    Thanks for the replys everyone!

    Quote Originally Posted by Itsredd View Post
    I'd suggest finding out who the OEM is for that PSU. It's one thing you really don't want to skimp on. Also, wouldn't a B75 be a better choice with that cpu?
    I couldn't find out who OEM for the case was (Although I might not be looking in the right spot), but reviews on newegg were reasonable although a few cases had problems with the PSU. I think I'll take the risk because there don't seem to be many other alternatives for what I want.

    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($129.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.49 @ Outlet PC)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Sandisk 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
    Case: Inwin IW-BP655.200BL Mini ITX Tower Case w/200W Power Supply ($47.98 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $376.44
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-03 22:21 EDT-0400)
    If I upgrade the CPU to a 3225 in order to match the A6-5400K then it seems quite a bit more expensive than MB and APU combo:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboD...=Combo.1245455 = $238
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157357 + http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819113282 = $175

    Although the the built in WiFi is nice, is there something else that would justify the increased cost? Reliability, Performance, ect.

    Quote Originally Posted by tenangrychickens View Post
    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Pentium G870 3.1GHz Dual-Core Processor ($84.99 @ Amazon)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H61N-USB3 Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($73.99 @ NCIX US)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($92.99 @ Adorama)
    Case: Inwin BP655.200BL Mini ITX Desktop Case w/200W Power Supply ($53.56 @ Amazon)
    Total: $352.52
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-04 03:42 EDT-0400)

    The reason I favour the Intel over the AMD APUs is that the Motherboards for the ITX format are much more expensive for AMD.
    Unfortunately that motherboard is only eSATA 3Gb/s and I want to make full use of my SSD

    Quote Originally Posted by Itsredd View Post
    I assume a B75 board with external wifi adapter can be much cheaper.

    If it needs to be small for portability, I understand wanting WiFi. But, if it'll be stationary, he should plug a cable in it anyway.
    I was planning on using a USB WiFi adapter but if the MB comes with WiFi then that's fine too.
    Last edited by coolman298; 2013-04-04 at 06:26 PM.

  11. #11
    Dreadlord ItsRedd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    I was planning on using a USB WiFi adapter but if the MB comes with WiFi then that's fine too.
    It's more expensive most likely. USB stick + b75 board is probably cheaper.

  12. #12
    If I go for a b75 then these are the only mini-ITX boards Newegg has.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...x=-1025&y=-112

    The thin mini-ITX doesn't seem like a good idea especially for a novice PC builder like me. The other one looks good though. However, the total cost does seem to be greater than the AMD solution. What benefits to do I pick up with B75 and a 3225 over the A6-5400k and the A85X?

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    If I go for a b75 then these are the only mini-ITX boards Newegg has.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...x=-1025&y=-112

    The thin mini-ITX doesn't seem like a good idea especially for a novice PC builder like me. The other one looks good though. However, the total cost does seem to be greater than the AMD solution. What benefits to do I pick up with B75 and a 3225 over the A6-5400k and the A85X?
    Lower temps, due to the lower wattage on the CPU - in addition, the B75 ITX boards seem to come with in-built Wi-Fi. And for the level of budget that you're showing, there's really not that much choice.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by tenangrychickens View Post
    Lower temps, due to the lower wattage on the CPU - in addition, the B75 ITX boards seem to come with in-built Wi-Fi. And for the level of budget that you're showing, there's really not that much choice.
    Well the one B75 board that I found (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157310) doesn't seem to have built-in WiFi and as for price it seems like it's $170 for the AMD combo vs. $240 for the Intel combo. Is the 10W difference that large?

    EDIT:
    Alternatively, http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819106001 + http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157273 seems pretty good for only a $10 increase. Though the wattage goes up to 100W. Any thoughts?
    Last edited by coolman298; 2013-04-04 at 07:31 PM. Reason: Another AMD solution

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    If I upgrade the CPU to a 3225 in order to match the A6-5400K then it seems quite a bit more expensive than MB and APU combo:

    Although the the built in WiFi is nice, is there something else that would justify the increased cost? Reliability, Performance, ect.
    You get significantly improved CPU performance, reduced power consumption and better thermals when going Intel.

    A cheap no-name brand USB Wireless Adapter is $10-15 at least, which brings the price comparison to $238 vs $190. A brand name USB Wireless Adapter is some $30.

    If graphics is unimportant, then you really don't need to bump up to Intel HD 4000.

    If both CPU and GPU performance are unimportant, you could drop to a $60-70 Ivy Bridge Pentium.

    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    Alternatively, http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819106001 + http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157273 seems pretty good for only a $10 increase. Though the wattage goes up to 100W. Any thoughts?
    A8-3870K is last generation.

  16. #16
    Almost done with my getting stuff together for my computer. Just need some help with the RAM. I was looking at http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820231422 but it's not listed on compatibility list on ASRock's website for this MB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157357
    Do I need to find RAM off that list or should most things be alright?

    EDIT: I was looking for a 8gb soulution through G.Skill but there don't seem to be any on the compatibility list
    Last edited by coolman298; 2013-04-08 at 02:44 PM.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    Almost done with my getting stuff together for my computer. Just need some help with the RAM. I was looking at http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820231422 but it's not listed on compatibility list on ASRock's website for this MB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157357
    Do I need to find RAM off that list or should most things be alright?

    EDIT: I was looking for a 8gb soulution through G.Skill but there don't seem to be any on the compatibility list
    Don't worry too much about the list. If you pick a kit with standard specs from a reputable brand, you should be good to go. 1333 C9 @ 1.5V is pretty standard specs and G. Skill is a reputable brand.

    Any reason why you're going with 1333 Mhz for an APU? I assume you went APU for the graphics performance, but RAM speed highly affects APU performance. Although, you shouldn't bother with RAM speeds unless you're getting an A10.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    Don't worry too much about the list. If you pick a kit with standard specs from a reputable brand, you should be good to go. 1333 C9 @ 1.5V is pretty standard specs and G. Skill is a reputable brand.

    Any reason why you're going with 1333 Mhz for an APU? I assume you went APU for the graphics performance, but RAM speed highly affects APU performance. Although, you shouldn't bother with RAM speeds unless you're getting an A10.
    I did indeed go with a APU for the graphics performance without the need for a GPU. I didn't know that RAM speed was more important for APUs. I was under the assumption that the performance gains are something like 1-2%, but I am only getting a A6 since it's cost effective. So I'll just pick up http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820231550 instead since the price is very similar.

    Also my friend wanted to find another case since the current one seems to be iffy about the PSU, but they want a case that is as small as possible. Although, they may still go for the case if anyone here has any good experience with it. Lastly they wanted no external components.
    Last edited by coolman298; 2013-04-08 at 03:51 PM.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by coolman298 View Post
    Also my friend wanted to find another case since the current one seems to be iffy about the PSU, but they want a case that is as small as possible. Although, they may still go for the case if anyone here has any good experience with it. Lastly they wanted no external components.
    There aren't many cost effective solutions for small miniITX cases.

    Maybe replace the Inwin PSU with a Seasonic TFX 300W when it goes on sale? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817151090

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    There aren't many cost effective solutions for small miniITX cases.

    Maybe replace the Inwin PSU with a Seasonic TFX 300W when it goes on sale? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817151090
    I am willing to go with something a bit more expensive if it means a more reliable PSU and same or smaller size case.

    EDIT: List of possible cases http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...=1&srchInDesc=
    Last edited by coolman298; 2013-04-08 at 04:32 PM. Reason: List of possible cases

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