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MATX gaming system build help

Last response: in Systems
March 19, 2012 11:45:51 PM

Howdy, my current computer is so heavy that i'm struggling to lift it, and having just bought a ticket to i46 (LAN party in the UK this summer) it has struck me that i might need to do something about this :p 

My question is - Can i buy a mATX case / motherboard and then just swap on components such as my CPU and GPU? (See below for details). If not, what would be a nice, cheap (under £200-300) standalone alternative (no need for a monitor / keyboard etc.)?

My current build -
Mobo - A full size atx motherboard, so that doesn't matter
CPU - i5 2500k
GPU - MSI Twin Frozr II HD6950
RAM - 8gb 1600mHz Dual channel RAM (DDR3)
HDD - Sata 2 1tb standard harddrive
SDD - OCZ Agility 3 Sata 3 64gb.

So what i was planning on doing, was buying a £30-50 case, a mATX motherboard, and a cheap 250gb HDD, and then just unplugging my CPU / GPU / RAM and plugging them into the case while i was away? Am i missing something that would stop me from doing this? (I built the computer myself so taking it apart etc. is not a problem).

If there is a problem with this, what would you suggest as a cheap mATX equivilant? Whilst i like my games too look pretty, i've quite happily played TF2 / SC2 / LoL at lowest with a nVidia Geforce 7300 LS and a single core 2ghz AMD processor until i upgraded in september :p  so as long as the games run i don't mind about quality, so could you give me some ideas of a cheap alternative?

And my final question, should i just get a laptop? I just thought about it as i was writing this post, but i'm a total newbie when it comes too gaming laptops. I would only want to get one if the battery could sustain for maybe 5 hours of play without charge, does such a thing exist yet?

April 24, 2012 10:28:37 PM

Hi dude, me being stupid researched mobo's for days and totally forgot about form factor. Had a old case knocking around and for some reason thought it was a atx.

I'm in the process of finding a micro atx myself. This is what i've got so far, the +'s are the amount of forums that has liked,


GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 ++

AsRock Z68 pro3-m ++


Asus P8Z68-M Pro


MSI Z68MA-ED55 (B3)

Asus z68 maximusIV gene-z +++

The gene thing keeps popping up as rock solid. As for cooling which i haven't really got into but took a note as someone swore likes about the Noctua C12P.

Hope this helps, let me know what you choose, still getting my head around pcie being x16 if and plus = x8 and x4 stuff.

Regards jon