I'm planning on building my grandparents a compact PC for them to connect to their TV for web-browsing, netflix, etc. I've built a couple gaming PCs for myself in the past, but never a mini PC. I've been doing some shopping around for different hardware, but these builds keep coming out a little more expensive then I expected. The main components that are a must are: HDMI port (obviously) and at least 60GB SSD for OS and storage (an extra bay for future storage is a plus).
Approximate Purchase Date: November
Budget Range: $300 - 350
System Usage from Most to Least Important: surfing the web and netflix.
Are you buying a monitor: No
Parts to Upgrade: Everything
Do you need to buy OS: No
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com and I normally go to microcenter for CPU deals.
Parts Preferences: Intel i3 CPU (Pretty much set on getting this:Intel i3 2120
SLI or Crossfire: No
Your Monitor Resolution: Would be great to be able to watch 1920 x 1080 on the intel integrated graphics.
Additional Comments: In regards to the case, I'm looking for something compact and sleek. Something that would look nice next to a TV and low-cost.
I built this mini-itx system one week ago for my daughter at a cost of $350. It works very nicely and stays cool. Plenty of room for extra hard drives. The case was surprisingly roomy, sturdy and of high quality... a very quick and easy build.
For the operating system I prefer Xubuntu 12.04 or XBMC (Linux) media center. No cost, quick and easy installation and setup.
The one con: There is no internal header for plugging in the front connector for the usb3. But there are still two functional usb2 ports on the front and four usb ports on the rear, two of which are usb3.