Description

Two parents frustrated with their current Mac who haven't used Windows since XP wanted something quiet, inconspicuous, fast and built to last, with a budget of $1k. This build was my solution to that, and they've been super pleased with the results.

I used Win7 to re-acquaint them back into the Windows environment for a few months rather than confuse them with 8, and then later quietly upgraded the machine to Win10 in September - as I had hoped, it ended up being a pretty seamless transition.

I absolutely adore the tiny little tower - it's so cute.


Edit: Just wanna clarify that the gutsy motherboard was actually a specific request - and I figured it couldn't hurt, since I did want to future-proof it a little, and providing an unusually strong foundation to an otherwise simpler machine probably wouldn't be a bad thing. But I do admit I probably should have spent the extra money on an SSD instead, though, since I was concerned with longevity, after all.

Edit 2: Thanks for the feedback y'all. It's already been done for a while, but I made some hypothetical adjustments to this build based on what I heard: http://pcpartpicker.com/user/robohipster/saved/rK7NnQ

Comments

  • 42 months ago
  • 5 points

Why was this downvoted? It seems overpriced at a glance, but the price includes the OS, Microsoft Office, the monitor and the keyboard. Subtract all that and you end up with a $550 system. This is a pretty reasonable build for that price point.

Personally, I think the motherboard could have definitely been cheaper, though. Why Z97, since it's clearly not a gaming machine? A cheaper board would either mean money saved, or money that could have been put into a better GPU.

  • 42 months ago
  • 2 points

My goal was to put something together that would be deceptively tough and last a while, so I figured overcompensating a bit with the motherboard would help future-proof it a little.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Hm, gotcha. That's definitely not the mentality I would have gone with, but if it works for you, I don't see any problem. At any rate, it's surely cheaper than the Mac was. :D

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  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

HE USED THE F WORD... OH MY GAWD

  • 42 months ago
  • 0 points

Still not that great. At least for now, a 6100 would be much better than a 4150 + GT 720. Also, the SG13 is a superior case, albeit really the "shoebox"

  • 42 months ago
  • 3 points

Took me a while to get it l0l

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Why Z97?

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

They specifically requested a beefy motherboard, and this one in particular was recommended to me. I knew I wanted to go mini ITX, and my main goal with the machine was longevity, so I wanted to make sure I picked up something powerful to use as a foundation for the rest of the machine. This seemed like a good option.

  • 42 months ago
  • 3 points

H97 is exactly the same but without overclocking unless your parents want to ;)

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Oops. Yeah that uh, probably would have been fine. >.> Too late now though. haha

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Haha no worries, maybe your dad overclocks in future... :D

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Made some hypothetical adjustments to this setup based on feedback: http://pcpartpicker.com/user/robohipster/saved/rK7NnQ

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build. I'm impressed that your parents requested "a beefy motherboard". My mother wouldn't know a beefy motherboard from a T-bone surfboard (whatever one of those is).

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

+1 for the fact that you're helping out your parents. Good build, you could probably add an unlocked Haswell processor for cheap down the line. Cheers!

  • 42 months ago
  • -2 points

I like it but really question a lot of stuff. For one thing, the power supply has bad capacitors and poor voltage regulation ripple, and specified temperature for guaranteed wattage. It's a low quality power supply and I wouldn't be surprised if it does not last very long due to the capacitors. An electrolytic capacitors has a dielectric fluid inside that stores electric charges. A poor capacitor can leak this due to bad sealant or just due to temperature (Corsair CX caps are rated at 80C).

Anyway, since the build is very low power, it should be fine but I really would have avoided overspending on the motherboard and getting a higher quality power supply. More storage could have also gone in. But otherwise nice build that will be fine for your parents' supposed general usage, but longevity is the only issue.

  • 42 months ago
  • 2 points

The CX430 is a fine PSU. This actually has GOOD ripple suppression and voltage regulation. I do not know why you said " voltage regulation ripple" as voltage regulation and ripple are completely different things.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Very immature.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Dude, be like that if you want. I just look to enjoy my life. That's what I find funny so that is what I put. Thanks

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

I left out the word "and" - just a grammar mishap nothing to make merry about. In addition, I wouldn't call it a fine PSU - it's a plain rip off. There are so many better options for the price area.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Its not man, Post me one bad cx430 review. You cannot. It is a good unit. The rest of the Cx are not great, but the cx430 is good and has it's place.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Well you're correct about the voltage and ripple after looking at jonny's review. But this person's primary focus was a build for his parents that would last, and I still see Chinese caps in it just like the rest of them. I'd not pay $50 for a 430W unit with Chinese capacitors that I want to last a very long time.

Well then, Toms should take the CX 430W out of Tier 4 on the list. Not sure why they have it there then. Gotta take it out. I can't memorize every single PSU out there so that's why the lists are helpful at times.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

These caps will last as long as any other caps. This PSU will not be stressed and therefore will easily go 5-8 years without issue, probably more. I would not hesitate to use this PSU in a PC like this. It was a good choice.

The Toms list has ALOT of issues. The CX430 is just one of many.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks. I'll look into getting that replaced at some point.

  • 42 months ago
  • 3 points

Don't. the CX430 is a great PSU for PCs like this. it is not bad at all. That guy just doesn't know what he is talking about.

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  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah not including an ssd was a dumb oversight on my part given the focus was longevity and speed. Like, literally what an ssd is good for. :P So yeah, I admit I should have spent a little less on the motherboard and a little more to get an ssd. As for the gpu, I can't take credit for that idea because a friend recommended it to me, but yeah I'm glad I went with it - better safe than sorry and it wasn't too much more expensive to just include one.

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  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

Actually that's a good point, and I'm now realizing that was a dumb oversight on my part. They were looking for long-term speed and shelling out a little more for an ssd definitely would have been a better use of money. Oh well... what's done is done. But at least that'll be easy to replace.