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Small Form factor PC build

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June 9, 2011 9:40:22 PM

Hello,

A customer of mine is looking for me to build them a small form factor computer. but im having a hard time putting something together. I build her a computer using a shuttle barebone a few years ago and she really likes the size. however I had a TON of problem with bad motherboards on these guys, (replacement boards are $150 from shuttle...almost the same price as the entire barebone!) so im trying to get away form building a shuttle... but im having a hard tiem finding a suitable replacement.

I recently started selling Asus EEE boxes for customers who basically need an internet computer but don't want a laptop. But this customre wants her son to be able to play games (the Asus boxes dosesn't have a dvd drive) but she wants something small form factor. (not a tower)

so, i was looking for a replacement to a shuttle barebone that I could build. (im not opposed to buying a case, motherboard and power supply on their own, but if I could get it as a barebone, all the better) Any suggestions?

I've also thought about setting her up with an Asus EEE box using AMD's fusion CPU and an external DVD drive. Think this would work? (her son would be playing lite games like WOW... nothing majorly crazy like Crysis... so im not looking to make a small gaming rig.. just something that will work with a little bit of balls)

Any help would be most appreciated

More about : small form factor build

June 10, 2011 12:13:37 AM

How about a Silverstone Sugo [ or similar ] case and an m-atx motherboard?

you should be able to fit a reasonable gfx card in a case like that , and a powerful i5 2400 cpu

SG02F,
http://www.silverstonetek.com/products/p_contents.php?p...

Later Sugo models take mini ITX boards but might not meet the gaming requirements
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June 10, 2011 8:49:15 AM

I love silverstone Cases. Here is a m-ITX build with options. the SG02 above is also a good case and will handle uATX MB's, but is larger.

Here is a Tom's article on GPU and CPU performance for WOW gaming:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/world-of-warcraft-c...

you didn't specify a budget so I gave a few options.

CASE This is a m-ITX case and is 10.87" x 6.93" x 8.74" and will hold a a dual slot GPU up to 9" long. it comes with a good solid powersupply.
SILVERSTONE Sugo Series SG05BB-450 ALL Black Plastic / SECC Mini-ITX Desktop Computer Case with SFX 450W 80+ Bronze
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16811163171
$119.99
CD/DVD Burner for the case
Sony Optiarc CD/DVD Burner Black SATA Model AD-7710H-01 - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16827118058
$35.99
Power/SATA adapter for slimline SATA drives
StarTech SLSATAF20 20in Slimline SATA Female to SATA with LP4 Power Cable Adapter
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16812200374
$11
MB (m-ITX) has a PCIe x16 slot for GPUs
ASUS P8H61-I (REV 3.0) LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16813131727
$84.99
RAM I normally go with GSKILL, but newegg was sold out of the good cheap stuff, this is just as good only $1 more
Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996768
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16820226092
$40.99
HDD I just threw in a good fast HDD for its fast load times and good reveiws.
Western Digital Caviar Black WD5002AALX 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16822136795
$59.99

GPU choices: both should play WOW at +60FPS on ultra high at 1920x1080 and will be good other games on at least medium graphics settings. Addtionally both are under 9" and will fit in the case. I gave ATI and nVidia options.
MSI R5770 Hawk Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16814127490
$15.00 Mail-in Rebate
$144.99

Palit NE5S4500FHD01 GeForce GTS 450 (Fermi) 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16814261079
-$10.00 Instant
$129.99
$119.99

CPU Choices: Both will be fine for WOW and moderate gaming
Intel Core i5-2400 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz (3.4GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52400
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16819115074
$189.99

Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I32100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Item #: N82E16819115078
$124.99


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June 10, 2011 2:18:21 PM

Thanks for all the help! those silverstone cases look pretty nice. and the case and mobo is about the same cost that I used to pay for a shuttle barebone (just about $200)

the customer is trying to keep costs down, and as I said before the games this person is playing are not high end (I used WOW as an example of something that would probably be the highest end they would play..) but since hes still faily young, all the games are very low detail (think reader rabit fro back in the day) but I'd like for him to eventually be able to move to decent games in a year or 2.

with this in mind, I've thought about going AMD instead of intel (simply because the CPU's are half the price..and in this case im pretty sure the user won't notice the difference) I'll probably also trim the graphics card down a bit for the same reasons.

thanks again!
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June 10, 2011 3:05:14 PM

With the release of the 2nd generation Intel® Core™ processors, Intel released a new group of processor designed for small form factor and HTPC’s, each one of these processors with be designated with “T” and will have very low TDP (Thermal Design Power). In the case of the Intel Core i3-2100T will have a TDP of only 35watts and will come with a low profile HSF (heatsink/fan) for use in thin cases.

Christian Wood
Intel Enthusiast Team
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June 10, 2011 7:56:32 PM

Id tend to want to use an intel i3 in a sff case . They do use less power , and the cooling in those cases is a lot less than an ATX case .
My guess is that a gfx card that exhausts hot air outside the case is a good option too .
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June 11, 2011 10:19:27 AM

drnick5 said:
Thanks for all the help! those silverstone cases look pretty nice. and the case and mobo is about the same cost that I used to pay for a shuttle barebone (just about $200)

the customer is trying to keep costs down, and as I said before the games this person is playing are not high end (I used WOW as an example of something that would probably be the highest end they would play..) but since hes still faily young, all the games are very low detail (think reader rabit fro back in the day) but I'd like for him to eventually be able to move to decent games in a year or 2.

with this in mind, I've thought about going AMD instead of intel (simply because the CPU's are half the price..and in this case im pretty sure the user won't notice the difference) I'll probably also trim the graphics card down a bit for the same reasons.

thanks again!



I looked a the AMD mITX MB and found they are much more expensive than the intel ones. any saving on the CPU would end up being spent on the MB. there are very few mITX offerings for AM3 what is offered isn't well reviewed.

that being said, if you switch to AMD you will most likely have jump up to uATX sized MB's to realize any significant savings, which means the silversone SG02 case. you will need a PS for the case also.

I would suggest a HD 5570 or 5670 video card based on keep the costs down and still having a discreet GPU

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June 12, 2011 8:01:45 PM

jerreddredd said:


that being said, if you switch to AMD you will most likely have jump up to uATX sized MB's to realize any significant savings, which means the silversone SG02 case. you will need a PS for the case also.



sure you werent looking at boards with Fusion APU's already installed? These are processor/graphics combo's .

They're fairly capable units but not ideal for a multipurpose computer
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June 13, 2011 7:18:08 AM

Outlander_04 said:
sure you werent looking at boards with Fusion APU's already installed? These are processor/graphics combo's .

They're fairly capable units but not ideal for a multipurpose computer


nope, though I did only see what newegg had to offer. there were one or twp that were below $100, but these were DDR2 based.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
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June 13, 2011 1:57:13 PM

Llano is due June 26, which will be an Athlon II with Fusion.
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June 13, 2011 9:25:10 PM

thanks for all the help, I put togteher a system suing the silverstone mini itx case and the low power sandy bridge pentium dual core with a decent video card
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!