Description

Build Date: 16FEB2016

Request was for a "as cheap as possible" computer for a 12 year old kid who plays on console but needed a "cool computer" so that he could play Minecraft with his friends and do schoolwork on. It needed to have Wi-Fi and once I explained advantages of an SSD, it became a requirement for this build as well. Additionally it was to be tiny, low power, and "cool".

Pros:

  • $320
  • 120GB SSD
  • Aesthetically pleasing case - "cool"
  • Wi-Fi

Cons:

  • Only 4GB of RAM
  • No discreet GPU

Notes: Budget builds are BUDGET builds. I have to make the best machine for it's intended purpose while maintaining the budget. In this instance the parts I went with were because my local computer shop was going out of business and had a bunch of parts for 25% off. However, I still had to buy a few from Amazon to finish off the build. While I got very lucky and this build was extremely cheap, it could still be built for less than $400. Then again, I probably would have used different parts if that were the case.

Comments

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Pentium build in a cool little case. Good job!

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

[comment deleted]
  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points

Lights make everything cool.

  • 47 months ago
  • 3 points

Fans do too. B)

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

hehe +1

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I plan on doing something like this for my brother, what does this system run FPS wise on minecraft?

  • 47 months ago
  • 3 points

I would build with an APU rig, having the integrated R7 GPU will make a world of difference in gaming. You could go with an A10 for close to this price and out preform this rig on every turn. Just make sure to get 8gb of ram (if possible, since the iGPU uses system RAM) and try to shoot for 1866MHz as a minimum.

I specked an a10 build with 8gb of RAM with an SSD and EVGA PSU for $320, so it can be done cheaply if you really have to. Don't get a GPU if you are going with an APU.

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/zVk3qs (I went ITX with the mobo and just picked a random case, this can be changed to your needs)

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Something like this was what I was initially shooting for but the family didn't want to spend more than $350 and with windows, your build is well over $420 mark. Also, newegg murders me on shipping so I am limited to amazon prime cases and that PSU isnt great. Replacing those items pushes the build past $450 which puts you close to the 860k/g3258 / 750ti price point.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Windows is a tough one, most people do not factor that in to the build price. Much the same as not counting a mouse, keyboard, monitor or speakers.

I specked a build off those specs you suggested and I have a price of $370 using similar parts as the A10. So you are looking at $450 with windows. This is $20 more then the APU build. I also went with a relatively high-end APU (the A10 7700 pars off against the i3-4160 and beats it in everything but single core and absolutely crushes the G3258), you can drop down to an A8-7600 (which actually out preforms the G3258 handedly on everything less single core performance) and save $30-40 on the build. In the end having a dedicated GPU will be better, but APU's are always cheaper. I prefer to steer clear of APU's less I am building an HTPC for the reason you suggested, it is less then $100 more to get a CPU/GPU that will out preform. I would go with an i3 and not the G3258 with a 750Ti, going with the G3258 will not really be a performance increase over an APU on the processing side and the 750Ti is about equal to the R7 integrated chip of the APU. For $20 less you will get much better with the A10, or still a little better performance with the A8 at $60 less. The G3258 will offer much better upgrade options going forward, which is important to me and many others but not everyone. http://pcpartpicker.com/p/KWRtwP

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I agree with using the APUs for HTPC, I personally have an A10 5800K powering my TV at home and I love it. But I promise you that a 750ti will walk all over the 7700K's R7 Integrated graphics especially at 1080p.

  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points

My friend has a integrated graphics with his i7 and only gets 60 fps in minecraft so with the pentium i'm thinking about 15-30 fps, I would recommend putting a somewhat cheat graphics card like a 750ti for a r9 280

  • 47 months ago
  • 0 points

Minecraft is CPU intensive, a graphics card will make a slight difference if lucky.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

This is not true at all anymore.

  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points

Minecraft hasn't improved graphic-wise in years. Unless planning on shaders or fancy texture packs it's not needed.

  • 47 months ago
  • 0 points

This is false. My g3258 barely gets 30fps with no gpu but if you add my r9 380 I get 200+ fps.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I don't know honestly. But I loaded it up and played on the reddit server for about 30 minutes and I didn't notice any lag or frame skipping. You could add a cheap GPU to this build or possible even upgrade to an AMD APU or an Intel i3 and still keep it around $400.

[comment deleted]
  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

So much on the single core performance. So much.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

What do you mean by wifi? I'm going to freak out if my part list doesn't have this so called wifi :o

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Yes, that motherboard listed has built in Wi-Fi on it.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey? The mobo in this build has it built in for simplicity - don't freak if you don't have it, you will have an Ethernet port.

WIFI: or WLAN -> wireless local area network.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wi-Fi (brand name) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_LAN

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I would have spent a little more on the PSU, but all and all a nice build. I would like to see more pics if you have them. :)

Next time you need to build a really small PC on a budget I would suggest going with an APU since they have a really good iGPU built in and tend to be cheaper then Intel. That is just my 2 cents, or is it 10 now; I can never keep up with inflation.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I definitely recommend the APU for this type of build, but I got this build for an absolute steal at a liquidation sale at a local computer store. If they had an APU on the shelves still I probably would have sprung for that. What don't you like about the PSU?

Also I am pretty certain that it is 14 cents now.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I hope that the pentium will be OC'd to 4.2+ GHz, so the littlun could get super 'cool' fps in minecraft (about 60 frames with 16 chunks loaded I think. Less chunks loaded would vastly improve it, though.) But this is a great build for the price range! (With leftover funds, adding a $20-30 cooler would help with the overclocking)

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

If you click f3 you will see the fps. Plz tell I wanna know.
+1

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

It was for a customer. I don't have the computer anymore. Sorry mate.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Oh

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

very nice budget build considering that a large amount of it was spent on Windows

  • 47 months ago
  • 0 points

Windows is the number 1 budget killer lol.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

lol so true. I just finished a budget build and luckily I already had a windows key

  • 47 months ago
  • 0 points

As soon as they release system builder 4 packs for win10, I'll start buying them and saving my customers some money.

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Not bad for the budget while squeezing windows in there, though you could in most scenarios get a single 4Gb stick to ease futre upgrades and a g3258 would still be under the $350 mark while offering better performance out of the box, the option ot overclock and as such a lot more possibilities to upgrade with a graphics card without it being held back by the CPU.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I wanted an APU and at the minimum a G3258 but the store didn't have any. Same with the memory. I was wanting a single 4 or 8 but once again I was late to the liquidation sale and missed out.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

This is the second build in which you've used that Kingston SSD. It's not necessarily a bad SSD, but there have been issues with Kingston's transparency in switching parts around within the drive. Here's a benchmark comparing the Kingston drive to a similarly priced one from A-Data, and here's an article about the component switch.

Whether the whole thing was a bait-and-switch or not is up to debate, but in terms of value-oriented SSDs, I still think there's better options. I would look at this one or this one.

Other than that, nice job on the build! Where'd you get the PSU? You seem to have gotten it for a really great price.

+1

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I didn't know about that. I'll definitely read up on that. I have zero brand loyalty. If something is better at a specific price point I will 100% go with it. Thanks for the tip. If what you say turns out to be true, you will start seeing different ones in my future builds(except for my next build because I already ordered a v300 for it as well. Lol)

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Well, he could upgrade later

If he knows how...
  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

nice build!

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 42 months ago
  • 2 points

The sale of those keys violate Microsoft ToS, and the keys may be unexpectedly disabled. Recommending, suggesting, advising, encouraging, hinting, or in any way implying these keys as a solution or option is not allowed on this site.

  • 42 months ago
  • 1 point

So sorry, as I did not know. But thank you for telling me.

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points

But refurb pre-builts aren't "cool" lol Thanks for the +1