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1000$ Micro Gaming box with power

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November 26, 2010 9:17:58 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: In the next 3 weeks before Christmas

Budget Range: 1000 dollars after MIR

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Photo editing in photoshop, gaming, web browsing, may be video editing would prefer to have this option open ended.

Parts Not Required: Only parts I own are keyboard, dvd drive, mouse, and speakers. Also I pulled an old 200 Gb hard drive from an old pc that I will use in the beggining and then grab a Tb or so later this is just for cost reduction.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg.com, Tigerdircet, may be microcenter but the closest one to me is 3 hours away. (any reputable site really amazon etc.)

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: No Brand loyalty only what gives the better performance and has a better reputation

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 or 1920x1200 probably 1920x1080 though since its cheaper

Additional Comments: I am thinking I really want to get this into a micro case if I can. Also I want really good airflow so I dont have to worry about over clocking in the future, but at the same time I want it to be fairly quit. (I know alot to ask for right there)

I have posted a build before but after some reconsideration I decided to downsize as far as the sheer size of case (was using Raven 2) I will list what I am currently looking at because it is what I have seen working

tower/case: Antec Mini P180 Case ~80
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001450OMO/ref=ord_car...

Mobo: Asus rampage III gene~ 240
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Cpu: intel i7 870 -230
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

PSU: Rosewill 1000W semi modular ~ 100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: G. Skill Ripjaws 4Gb Duel channel ~ 50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: This is where things get blurred, I would prefer to use nvidia because the drivers always seem to be better than ATI's The 2 cards I have looked at are the EVGA GTX 460 and 470. I would buy 1 either way and then get another when money allowed me to do so. these range from 150-270 currently I believe.

Monitor: This is another grey area. Seeing as my budget sadly can not afford a beautiful Dell IPS panel without doubling itself I am stuck with the lesser options of 27" LED LCD screens that range in the 200-350 range


This leaves me at 700$ without graphics card(s) and monitor(s) Which is not a lot of room to move sadly
I have come here to ask the community of TH what they think of the build and what I should do.

I had every thing fitted out in my budget with AMD's phenom II BE 165 processor and a gygabite board wich intotal brought me to 280$ but after looking at sli options and finding that no AMD micro atx boards support it I was sadly subjected to going the intel route. Dont get me wrong intel puts out better cpus but cash for power most would agree AMD is the better option. Any way what are some peoples views here. What should I do with this build? Also is every thing compatible for the most part ?

Thanks in advance for all the help offered :) 


November 26, 2010 11:22:26 PM

Also what brands do people recommend for monitors ? I know Dell is a good brand but price their products are slightly higher.
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November 26, 2010 11:25:21 PM

No need to waste budget funds on that Asus board. Newegg won't sell you one of these but Amazon will, saving $75:

http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-Sabertooth-55i-Intel-Motherb...

Now you've taken the case to the opposite extreme. Seriously. Try this case and save $20 more:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Absolutely no need for more than 850W to SLI either of your choice vid cards, so this psu is high quality and it only costs $20 more for the high quality:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Go with a single 460 ($180 after MIR, OC'd), and if you need a second add it if and when:

Gigabyte 460 1 GB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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November 26, 2010 11:47:57 PM

I already ordered the psu because I know a few people who have it and love it plus reviews said it was decent. I think it will suffice for me, I know 1000W is a little bit overkill but hey I wont need to get another psu till this one dies.

I am confused on the mobo? The link you gave sends me to a chart of graphics cards which is helpful but not board related or atleast I think so.. but 75 dollars is alot so if you could explain a little may be please.

Also from what i have read and done as far as size comparisons go this micro atx case is almost the same size as the haf case you posted just takes a micro atx board instead.
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November 27, 2010 12:11:31 AM

Sorry about the link - I have corrected it so the post reads correctly now.

Yup, it takes a micro board and has a bit more confined space for air flow.

If you said "SLI = NO" instead of "SLI = Maybe", there'd be no issue with that case. Nor with a mATX mobo.
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November 27, 2010 12:30:10 AM

Heh heh - yup, it all fits in nice and tight.

Do you see any room for air to move past the vid cards? Anywhere?

If you go this route, please don't forget to come back and tell us how you did or didn't do well. Its not something we'd recommend, because we see issues with it, and no point to it.
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November 27, 2010 1:05:30 AM

it looks like the person added 4 extra fans that help flow over the video card now would this help enough ? or no Also any other comments or thoughts on my build?
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November 27, 2010 6:22:41 PM

4 fans will make it louder, not sure what it will do for cooler. Might be sort of like blowing into a cereal bowl :) 
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November 27, 2010 7:01:00 PM

So I would be ok if I just got a micro atx mono without the sli features and only put 1 graphics card in? This would run ok heat wise and lower my cost I am assuming? Thanks also for your help its greatly apreciated.
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November 27, 2010 7:13:51 PM

You are much more likely to be happy and successful using only one video card in a micro case.

FWIW, let me go in the opposite direction for a moment. I run an overclocked i5 750 in an HTPC case along with a 5750. CPU temps idle at 40C+, and routinely hit 60C when gaming. I have to be careful to provide cool air flow to the box to allow the rig to run within acceptable temps.

While I would not recommend this to anyone, it works for me solving a couple of my problems running 2 rigs much of the time. But I continuously monitor the temps, and accept this as part of the trade-off. But it is not something I would advise a builder to do, unless his REASONS for running a tiny case are substantial.

And in the case of 2x4XX in that small a box . . . it may or may not work well at all. Why bother?
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November 27, 2010 10:57:42 PM

I understand where you are coming from and the fact that micro atx cases usually dont offer the best grounds for overclocking, or cooling for that matter. This case isnt quite the same as most micro atx cases though (At least this is what I have been lead to believe, but I might just be gullible and optimistic for it)

For starters this case is only an inch or so shorter in height and length than the haf 912 case you posted. Now again im not claiming its better because i have not researched either product enough to say that but I did want to make it known they are similar size class. So close in fact that I have been asking around to see if people have tried to fit a full atx mobo inside the antec mini p180 or not if you remove both cages.

Secondly this case has a 200mm exhaust on top and another 120 in the back, with 2 120mm intake fans in the front (these will need to be installed by my self but it is designed to put them in for added air flow if one is so inclined)

After consideration though I believe you are correct in saying sli in this box would be a poor choice especially cards that run as hot as the gtx 400 series.

I am happy though that you have taken the time to help me and go back and forth over this, already I have made changes to my build that will both improve cost and over all performance heat wise.

(Quick note I didnt quite understand your second paragraph about the 2 rigs? I think the gist of it was you run a regular rig and a smaller one ? and then stating unless you have a reason for a small one dont?)
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November 27, 2010 11:16:26 PM

I want to change the mobo in my build I think for a cheaper one that has all of the same features minus sli I think, what ones do you recommend?

Also monitor suggestions???
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November 28, 2010 12:38:12 AM

I run two gaming rigs at two different locations. Rather than building 4 rigs, I transport one between locations. The "HTPC" case is my second rig at home, and my main rig away. It also holds 4 HDs worth of DVDs etc.

It is small for transport, and small so that it fits in the cabinets at either location.

As for mobo, any of these will work fine. The difference in chipsets is irrelevant to you - you are not using RAID and only using a single vid card.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

The first board is micro with 2 memory slots, the next has 4 . . . simply go down the list until you have the features you want in your build.
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November 28, 2010 1:02:15 AM

oh ok that makes sense.

Too bad intel doesnt give spec samples too companies of their chip sets a little earlier. If a company could make some mods to their mobos that made them sandy bridges ready I bet they would sell like hot cakes. Could add a 50 dollar extra charge for what might be a 5 dollar over haul change.
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