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Budget Family PC

by james_sweatyman



Date Published

June 22, 2016

Date Built

June 22, 2016

CPU Clock Rate

3.2 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

985 MHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

5.6 GHz


Built for a friend who required: - Basic Photoshop capabilities - Some Video Editing - Light Gaming - Office Duties - Under AU$1300

Silence was reasonably important in choosing the parts, hence the Silverstone Fanless Power Supply. One of the (two included) fans in the Cooler Master Silencio 352 had some serious coil whine, so that was removed, and the other set to idle at low temperatures.

The R9 380 stays cool, while providing ample performance for video editing and some light gaming. A quiet fan profile helps minimise noise. Was going to go with a Strix 950, but the 380 was on sale for the same price. The i5-6500 complements the 380 - quad core and 'fast enough'. A cheap set of 16GB RAM, alongside the best value SSD this side of a 1TB skew. The 3TB HDD is at the insistence of my friend, again chosen for it's low cost. Added an old ODD I had lying around so his wife can use DVDs she gets from work.

The Cooler Master has barely enough room for even the most basic of cable management, and some strange locations for m/b standoffs. The entire right edge of the MSI board has NO standoff underneath - bit strange. However the case provides a number of storage options in a small form factor, and the SD card reader is a bonus. Good luck cable-managing a full build though.

Part Reviews


A cheap, basic, motherboard.

Running off the B150 chipset, so that's a thing. neither here nor there as far as I'm concerned while using a non-overclockable CPU. A decent number of SATA ports, which is a win. SATA-express never really took off, so that's a 'wasted' feature. The BIOS is VERY basic, and certainly does not compare to higher end (and more expensive) BIOS utilities. However, functions and does it's job. Only having three (albeit PWM) fan headers is disappointing, regardless of price-point. Splitters or extra fan controllers recommended for anybody rocking more than two fans.


Can't knock it at this price. Albeit not as quick as higher end SSDs... that would be a bit too good to be true. Nice and quick, and a decent size for a really low cost.


Cheap, traditional storage. Haven't had reliability concerns with the Barracudas, but haven't thrashed them either. If you're looking for a reliable drive for important data, you're looking in the wrong place - but if you're after a large, reasonably quick HDD - this does the job nicely


This is a good small case, with a few limitations.

There is BARELY enough room for even the most basic cable management. 24-pin Motherboard cable doesn't fit behind the m/b tray, without some serious squashing of the rear panel, and any non-ribbon cables will struggle to fit.

A lack of rubber mounts for mechanical drives makes this otherwise quiet case louder than it needs to be, and to add to the noise, one of the included fans had significant coil whine while operating.

But for the price, it does the job of being a relatively quiet mATX system

Power Supply

Really good power supply. Love that it's fanless, and although it gets warmer than a fanned power supply, it's completely silent ALL the time.

The included cables aren't fantastic however, particularly the bulked 24-pin.

Comments Sorted by:

Andzx02 7 Builds 3 points 30 months ago

Interesting build +1 going to put up some finished pics?

james_sweatyman submitter 2 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

Pictures up now, showing the rats nest of cables that had nowhere to hide ;P

Andzx02 7 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

Looks good!!

lkscmpbll 1 point 30 months ago

Not bad for the budget +1 for keeping it silent