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Thread: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

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    Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    This is my first post on this forum, i have been reading threads on here for a couple days now and have decided i want to build a mini pc if that makes sense. (mini pc becuase my room is actually so small i wont have enough room on my desk or under is for a big tower unit) and its a present to my self for my 20th birthday which went a couple days ago.

    I would like to spend a max of £500 if possible. I will be using the pc to render hd videos as i make movies, i play a couple of games but nothing that warrants me a hardcore gamer, at most i play minecraft. An HD connection would help but not absolutly necessary.

    Here are some specs i would like (but as i have a budget please feel free to change or reduce them):
    500gb+ HDD
    HD connection
    fast processor
    4gb ram
    DVD +/- rw (not completely necessary)
    copy of an OS (dont have a spare)


    I know theres not alot of information there, but im hoping you guys would know what I need more than I do, im just tired of waiting 30-40 hours for vidoes to render on my laptop. should also be good for everyday general use (remember i am still a student)

    If you decide i should just drop this idea and im better off buying a stock pc frpm pc world or somewhere, please dont hesitate in saying so.

    Many Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Stylis10; 23-04-2011 at 11:12 PM. Reason: include copy of OS requirement

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Do you need to include a copy of an OS into the budget too??


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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    Do you need to include a copy of an OS into the budget too??
    yes, sorry, i should have made that bit clearer. my mistake

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Quote Originally Posted by Stylis10 View Post
    yes, sorry, i should have made that bit clearer. my mistake
    Is height or foot print more important??


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    • Stylis10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte GA-H67M-UD2h-B3
      • CPU:
      • Intel i5 2500k 3.3GHz
      • Memory:
      • 8GB
      • Storage:
      • 1TB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVGA GTX 460 SC
      • PSU:
      • Antec Gamer 520W
      • Case:
      • Fractal Deisgn Core 1000
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7
      • Monitor(s):
      • Acer S221HQL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    Is height or foot print more important??
    sorry im not too sure what your asking, but from what im trying to get, aslong as the base unit is small, it can be short and wide, or tall and narrower, or a small box liek shape, just not one big tower unit as to wont have enough room on the shelf or under desk for that, my amps and stereos take up alot of the room

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    If you get to 20 posts you can get free postage from Scan:

    http://forums.hexus.net/scan-care-he...-delivery.html

    I would also check these web-pages for special offers too:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/todayonly/index.aspx

    http://www.scan.co.uk/shopoffers/index.aspx

    I came up with the following specification from Scan.



    However,you can a Core i5 2500s for around the same price:

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Intel-i5-2500s...item45fa2a4ff5

    It is not very common though and that Ebay seller seems to have only one left.

    The Q07 can only accept single slot graphics cards though.

    The SG05 can accept dual slot graphics cards but has a smaller PSU.



    I am not sure whether you need the following adapter for the optical drive too:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/akasa...-opticals-40cm

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/akasa...ower-and-data)

    In both builds you will need to use the HD2000 IGP but you can add a better graphics card at a later date.

    Here are the product pages for both the cases:

    http://www.silverstonetek.com/produc...s.php?pno=sg05

    http://www.lian-li.com/v2/en/product...ndex=63&g=spec

    Also,I have specified a 65W CPU as a 95W CPU would probably be pushing the VRMs on the motherboard unless sufficient cooling is provided.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 24-04-2011 at 12:43 AM.


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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Why not have the best of both worlds and use the Q08?
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/lian-...%28atx-fits%29

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    Can't fault anything with those specs, but I will say the Lian-Li case will be very cramped with an ATX power supply, lots of cable bending etc. I mean it's doable or it wouldn't sell, but I can't see it being straightforward and it might be a bit off-putting especially if it's your first build. Lack of working space is to be expected with an SFF case, but I think there are better laid-out designs than this one. Just my 2p.

    Edit: It's the Q07 I'm talking about BTW, the Q08 looks better in that regard but I've not used it so I'm not sure.

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    The problem is that the budget is no more than £500 and the Q08 and Q11 will mean the build is over budget. The XFX PSU is quite small though and is around 135MM in length AFAIK.

    Another possibility would be to go with a socket 1156 based build although this platform is now EOL AFAIK.

    The following build is from Ebuyer and has a separate graphics card.



    The Shuttle should be relatively easy to assemble.

    Edit!!

    This article should give you an indication of how the Core i5 760 will perform when compared to a Sandy Bridge Core i5:

    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu...0_9.html#sect1

    I suspect that the 2.5GHZ Core i5 2400S and the 2.8GHZ Core i5 760 will not be quite similar in video encoding performance.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 24-04-2011 at 12:40 AM.


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    • Stylis10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte GA-H67M-UD2h-B3
      • CPU:
      • Intel i5 2500k 3.3GHz
      • Memory:
      • 8GB
      • Storage:
      • 1TB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVGA GTX 460 SC
      • PSU:
      • Antec Gamer 520W
      • Case:
      • Fractal Deisgn Core 1000
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7
      • Monitor(s):
      • Acer S221HQL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    wow, i didnt expect a build that quick, thank you very much.

    would this system likely last me 5 years? or is that being hopefull? and you mentions a 65W CPU instead of s 90W CPU, do i loose much performance with this?

    also unable to view the power adapter

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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
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      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
      • FUNCTIONAL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    I edited the link and added another one now.

    The standard 95W Core i5 2400 runs at 3.1GHZ whereas the Core i5 2400S runs at 2.5GHZ. So you are loosing around 20% in performance. The Core i5 2500S runs at 2.7GHZ so the performance loss will be a bit less.

    A 95W CPU will work in the motherboard but this is the maximum it is rated for!

    If you intend to have the computer for a few years I would make sure the VRMs are kept cool if a 95W CPU is used.


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    • Stylis10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte GA-H67M-UD2h-B3
      • CPU:
      • Intel i5 2500k 3.3GHz
      • Memory:
      • 8GB
      • Storage:
      • 1TB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVGA GTX 460 SC
      • PSU:
      • Antec Gamer 520W
      • Case:
      • Fractal Deisgn Core 1000
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7
      • Monitor(s):
      • Acer S221HQL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    i cannot tell you how much help you have been, you have no doubt saved me hours of searching the net and coming up with builds that would clearly be wrong, i do have one question though could i take the harddrive from the 1st and 2nd build and replace it into the 3rd build? theres a 500gb increase i see with very little price increase

  13. #13
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    • Stylis10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte GA-H67M-UD2h-B3
      • CPU:
      • Intel i5 2500k 3.3GHz
      • Memory:
      • 8GB
      • Storage:
      • 1TB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVGA GTX 460 SC
      • PSU:
      • Antec Gamer 520W
      • Case:
      • Fractal Deisgn Core 1000
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7
      • Monitor(s):
      • Acer S221HQL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    how much of a pice increase would the Q08 be, do the rest of the components stay the same or do they increase in price also?
    Last edited by Stylis10; 24-04-2011 at 02:15 AM.

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    The Q09 is over £50 more, or double the price.

    You could use whichever HDD you like.

  15. #15
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    • Stylis10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte GA-H67M-UD2h-B3
      • CPU:
      • Intel i5 2500k 3.3GHz
      • Memory:
      • 8GB
      • Storage:
      • 1TB
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVGA GTX 460 SC
      • PSU:
      • Antec Gamer 520W
      • Case:
      • Fractal Deisgn Core 1000
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7
      • Monitor(s):
      • Acer S221HQL

    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    how long would you expect the above builds to last? realistically, if using an HD tv as a monitor, rendering a movie every 3-4 weeks. Would the systems get very hot?

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    Re: Mini PC build (need help for my first time)

    how long a PC will last is always a difficult question to answer. We don't know what suitable performance is for you and we don't know how much things are going to change over that time. The general bonus with buying PC parts and building it yourself is that you can upgrade parts of it rather than the whole thing, so the initial investment in case, power supply, hard drives etc can be transferred over when you wsitch toa new platform. The most likely thing that you would need to change to stay up to date is probably just the GPU. Again though, its hard for us to predict what suitable performance for you actually is so you may well just be fine leaving it as it is.

    As for the system getting hot, that depends on the ventilation of where it is stored, if you keep it in a closed cupboard then yeah, its gonna get really hot. If its put on a wooden floor next to your desk, assuming the fans in the case are spinning it should be able to keep the temps under control. You can always upgrade the fans if things get a little too toasty.

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