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Light living room gaming PC

by jmclusky


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

July 12, 2014

CPU Clock Rate

3.5 GHz


I built this PC for my brother in law who has been using a bargain basement laptop for casual gaming (Minecraft etc.) and wanted something better. The brief was 720p gaming (on the living room PC) on something that was super small and compact - hence the choice of mini-ITX and possibly the smallest case I've ever seen that could take a full size GPU. It also has to last for a good while (no Celeron/Pentiums here).

Because price was a huge factor the GPU is actually an old one of mine - it should be fine for most games at 720p at high/ultra or even 1080p at medium settings, as was the hard drive which is big enough for the foreseeable future. Minecraft (the first and most important benchmark for Phil) is running at 60fps so that's all good. In a year or two the GPU can be upgraded to keep the machine running well on newer games. Likewise, there's a free slot for a future memory upgrade without wasting the stick that's already bought. The case was ex-display or a customer return (but not a mark on it) which is why it's so cheap compared to normal.

The case was surprisingly easy to work with - some bits (such as the front IO headers) were a bit tricky but even the cable management wasn't too bad. Unfortunately I forgot to upload a picture of the build with the GPU installed but still open but even all completed the cables tuck nicely out of the way.

Comments Sorted by:

OblivionXBA 4 Builds 5 points 57 months ago

You have a cupboard of parts? That's pretty badass.

mrsimplycrazy 13 points 57 months ago

I have a cupboard of parts too. Too bad that its empty.

POPTART2014 1 Build 1 point 57 months ago


AintScurr 3 points 57 months ago
OblivionXBA 4 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

Haha same here I guess. You got me there!

pegotico 2 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

+1, nice build, reusing old parts. Why didn't you buy 2X4gb to take advantage of dual channel?

jmclusky submitter 2 Builds 2 points 57 months ago

Everything I've read suggests that the performance penalty of not using dual channel is hardly noticeable, so I figure if an upgrade is needed in the future then I can just slot in another 8Gb with no extra waste.

pegotico 2 Builds 3 points 57 months ago

ok, but take this into consideration for future purchases, Corsair doesn't recommend buying even separate identical sticks as ppl have experience problems, but sticks that have been matched at factory. Not saying it wont work.

xBajamonsteRx 2 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

Mind giving me some parts from that cupboard of yours. I sure like PC parts :D:D:D +1

chare375 1 Build 1 point 57 months ago

+1 for the secret PC part stash!

doggybear 1 point 56 months ago

How's the wifi of the mobo?

jmclusky submitter 2 Builds 1 point 56 months ago

I only used it for a little while during the setup before sending it off but it seemed pretty fine. Same goes for the Asus on-board wifi in my previous build which uses the same chipset.

Trexxit 1 Build 1 point 52 months ago

Did the 4 pin reach the board without having to go over top of it? as in could it wrap around the top of the board to look neat and tidy?

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LegendaryLux 4 points 57 months ago

Just a little tip: Look at the parts list, he has one :)

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Vilioo 3 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

I'd assume he was leaving the extra slot for another dimm of 8GB as an performance upgrade down the road. Same reason he got a Z97 motherboard, for future upgrades.

jmclusky submitter 2 Builds 2 points 57 months ago

That's the plan. It's a H97 not a Z97, though.

Everything I've read suggests that dual channel adds so little performance benefit that I figured it'd be better to leave a slot free than have to discard two 4Gb sticks if an upgrade was needed later.