I intended this build to replace an aging work and general use PC, that my son was starting to use for some gaming by 9 year-old son.
I wanted to go for a smaller form factor to sit on my rather small desk, hence the Mini Tower. For it's intended use, it's fantastic.
As for the build there are some things I will do next time. I knew going in that the case has virtually no cable management so I should have been smarter and should have bought a semi-modular PSU to help with the number of cables and using only those that I need. Luckily I don't have a DVD/Blu-Ray drive so I am basically storing the wad of unused cables in the 5 1/4 drive bay. Not ideal but it works.
The case is actually solid and easy to build in, no one should expect high-end features or cable management in a budget mini-tower.
The motherboard is solid, and I'm a fan of MSI, and does the job I bought it to do. There are some quirks that annoyed like the placement of the case fan header. If you install any type of video card it becomes very tight but, again, this was a budget build so my expectations were generally met.
As for the video card, I know I can now get the RX 470 for $35-$45 (CAD $) now and would have been a better choice, but at the time I actually bought the card the spread was larger than that and I was under a strict budget. That being said, for the games that are being used on the PC, it's fantastic. PvZ: Garden Warfare 1 &2, Bioshock Infinite, WoW get 60 fps on high or med-high settings. Ark even gets a steady 30+ fps on med settings.
Overall, I'm happy with the build and it was my first opportunity to build a PC with my son. It scratched the itch to build a PC, now to start the saving to complete a gaming build for myself.
Photo was prior to any attempt at cable management. First time I powered it on to make sure everything was working. I admit, I kind of forgot about taking any pictures. I'll add more later.
Solid, cool, low cost and does the job I need it to do
Solid budget micro ATX board. There's really nothing wrong with it. I got a little frustrated with the placement of the case fan header and a few other quibbles but it was minor overall. I'm a fan of MSI and this is a solid board.
It's cheap DDR4 memory. I was happy it worked.
Seems a little faster than a standard spinner drive and has the space to store all my work on. It works. I do have a 240 GB SSD in the old system this replaced. I'll probably pull that out and use it in this build at a later date (haven't decided if I want to use it in one of the other systems yet).
Decent budget 1080p card for most mainstream PC games. It works fantastic for all the games I've thrown at it, mostly 60+ fps on high or med/high settings. RX 470 would probably be the better choice if you have a few extra bucks to throw into your build, but I have no regrets or complaints of this card.
Anyone should know going in that you are not going to get any cable management or any high-end features. There are some flimsy pieces on mine (the clips on the drive bays for example) but those were minor issues.
You do get 2 USB 3 ports along with 2 USB 2 ports on the front panel, and you do get 2 case fans included. Overall, I think it's a good value for it's price.
It does what it's supposed to do.