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Tight budget office computer

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January 23, 2013 6:20:38 PM

I am looking to buy a (really) budget office computer. I already have a monitor, mouse, keyboard so just need the box (cpu/mobo/ram/case/psu/drive). It's only use will be to connect via a web browser+java to a remote server for work. Ideally however it would run windows to avoid compatibility problems which may end up being half the price. Ignoring windows for the moment, what's the best you can do for <200 quid?
January 23, 2013 6:28:43 PM

lets see.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zaOH
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zaOH/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zaOH/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Celeron G440 1.6GHz Single-Core Processor (£25.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Motherboard: MSI H61M-P31 (G3) Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£31.93 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Crucial 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1066 Memory (£17.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint M8 250GB 2.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive (£32.86 @ CCL Computers)
Case: Xigmatek Asgard II Black ATX Mid Tower Case (£28.31 @ Novatech)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £184.90
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-23 20:28 GMT+0000)

184$.

thats about what u can expect for 200 quid.

January 23, 2013 6:34:21 PM

My suggestion :

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD A4-5300 3.4GHz Dual-Core Processor (£34.74 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: MSI FM2-A55M-E33 Micro ATX FM2 Motherboard (£37.55 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Kingston 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£18.19 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 160GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£22.79 @ Aria PC)
Case: Xigmatek Asgard II Black ATX Mid Tower Case (£28.31 @ Novatech)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £189.88
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
Related resources
January 23, 2013 6:40:51 PM

not bad build.

January 23, 2013 6:53:37 PM

Those are great suggestions although one is much faster than the other it seems.

I however forgot that I really don't like tower systems. What's the best option to small form factor (or similar) case? I would this system to be as inconspicuous as possible. I don't mind adding a few extra quid for a better case.
January 23, 2013 6:55:37 PM

I mean .. "[...]What's the best option for a small form factor (or similar) case? I would like this system to be as inconspicuous as possible. I don't mind adding a few extra quid for a better case."

I couldn't edit my post it seems.

Best solution

January 23, 2013 6:57:11 PM
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ok lets see.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zb3T
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zb3T/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zb3T/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD A4-5300 3.4GHz Dual-Core Processor (£34.74 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: MSI FM2-A55M-E33 Micro ATX FM2 Motherboard (£37.55 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Crucial 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1066 Memory (£17.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint M8 500GB 2.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive (£37.20 @ Aria PC)
Case: Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Mini Tower Case (£31.12 @ Aria PC)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £206.42
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-23 20:56 GMT+0000)

206$ with the better amd processor+mini-atx tower.

January 23, 2013 7:55:57 PM

thanks :p 

January 23, 2013 8:04:57 PM

It's a great build!

The case is still a tower though right (40 x 20 x 45 cm)? The case you gave before was 47.5 cm x 18.5 cm x 40.8 cm which seems very similar. Did I miss something?
January 23, 2013 8:13:18 PM

its micro-atx yes
January 23, 2013 8:21:13 PM

In my suggestion if you want a mini case(the coolermaster is mini), and are will to spend a few quids more than 200 :

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD A4-5300 3.4GHz Dual-Core Processor (£34.74 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: MSI FM2-A55M-E33 Micro ATX FM2 Motherboard (£37.55 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£34.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 160GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£22.79 @ Aria PC)
Case: Cooler Master RC-361-KKN1 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case (£28.78 @ Scan.co.uk)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £206.67
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

You can see the specs of the case here : http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B006Z476NO/
With 8GB ram.
January 23, 2013 8:32:38 PM

thats not micro-atx thats mid-tower case tho.

and 4 gigs is enought for office pc ;) 

January 23, 2013 8:46:27 PM

he asked for a micro or mini-atx. if u read above.

hes running office and excel not autocad :) 

January 23, 2013 8:55:34 PM

Why is no one building him an ITX if what he wants is small form factor?
January 23, 2013 8:56:41 PM

i chose a micro-atx box, a decent micro-itx would cost more than his budget would permit.


January 24, 2013 6:36:59 AM

you need you go itx mobo and a micro atx pc case those two links i posted will be perfect.
January 24, 2013 9:48:16 AM

iceclock said:
i chose a micro-atx box, a decent micro-itx would cost more than his budget would permit.



I am not sure I am using this forum correctly. I have attempted to up vote your previous answer and I would also like to select it as the "best answer" but I don't seem to be able to do either. Sorry about this.
January 24, 2013 11:40:14 AM

lesshaste said:
I am not sure I am using this forum correctly. I have attempted to up vote your previous answer and I would also like to select it as the "best answer" but I don't seem to be able to do either. Sorry about this.

Try now.
January 24, 2013 12:23:53 PM

I like the first Intel build except for the G440 CPU. For a few quid (or whatever currency) more, you could get G540 dual core Sandy Bridge and stay within your budget. From what I have read, G540 has the advantage for basic computing (better CPU), A4-3400 has the advantage for gaming (better GPU). Since poster is not gaming, I would go with Intel.

Here is a revised build with a Micro-Atx Mini-tower case.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjaL
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjaL/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjaL/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Celeron G540 2.5GHz Dual-Core Processor (£31.80 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: MSI H61M-P31 (G3) Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£31.93 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Crucial 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1066 Memory (£17.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint M8 250GB 2.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive (£35.00 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Mini Tower Case (£31.12 @ Aria PC)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £195.66
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 14:21 GMT+0000)
January 24, 2013 12:36:54 PM

lesshate theres a best answer option, just select the answer u find deserves it, than click voila :D 

January 24, 2013 12:56:25 PM

Thought i'd add my two cents in here first. Here's my take on a mini itx build for this budget. Decided to step away from the norm and stick an SSD in there. As your only use is remoting into your computer at work i'm imagining you don't need storage on this computer. Also for that reason i haven't included a DVD drive as you can install either from a bootable USB or over LAN.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Pentium G550 2.6GHz Dual-Core Processor (£31.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H61N-USB3 Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard (£57.13 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Crucial 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1066 Memory (£17.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Crucial V4 32GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£35.00 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced (Black) Mini ITX Tower Case (£32.38 @ Scan.co.uk)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £209.33
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 15:23 GMT+0000)
January 24, 2013 1:06:19 PM

interesting except for the price, the above builds have more power.

January 24, 2013 1:08:57 PM

That's the trouble with going itx
January 24, 2013 1:10:55 PM

yes, its more costly.

atleast micro-atx does the job.

January 24, 2013 1:33:50 PM

It does the job just depends on how small he wants to go. The mini itx case does shave the size down.
January 24, 2013 1:36:04 PM

yea but power vs itx, power wins mixed with micro-atx :D 

January 24, 2013 1:42:12 PM

Not in all situations, as this is only used as a remote terminal, it only needs sufficient power to run a browser and java, all other processing power comes from the machine he's remoting into. Anything extra is just wasted.
January 24, 2013 1:43:08 PM

still, for the same price, u want beefier components, no sense in getting less for same price.

January 24, 2013 1:47:14 PM

How do the Micro-ATX builds have "more power"? You can put the same PSU, CPU, etc. in a ITX build. The only difference is size and price. ITX tends to run a bit more expensive for cases and motherboards, while limiting your options for expansion and sometimes there are issues of fitting components. I would favor Micro-ATX, but I don't see how power is a consideration. If he has a strong preference for small size, he should go ITX without hesitation.
January 24, 2013 1:48:16 PM

im saying for the same price, look at what i suggested and dj versus what he did, u get alot more for the microatx than for mini-itx. value wise.

January 24, 2013 1:51:43 PM

As he's asked for a small build that's what i've gone for, no point giving someone what they don't wan't.

In regards to the same price so you should get beefier components argument, i'd say that as micro atx is cheaper you should aim for ample performance and reduce cost. This is a remote terminal not a games machine, power isn't everything.
January 24, 2013 2:02:19 PM

yes i gave him a micro-atx case, and good components.

i could suggest a micro-itx build. whynot, but i find u sarcrifice performance.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD A4-3400 2.7GHz Dual-Core Processor (£29.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Motherboard: ASRock A75M-ITX Mini ITX FM1 Motherboard (£64.18 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Kingston 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£18.20 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Hitachi 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£39.72 @ Scan.co.uk)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced (Black) Mini ITX Tower Case (£32.38 @ Scan.co.uk)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £232.77
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 16:02 GMT+0000)

more costly and less interesting.

January 24, 2013 2:19:06 PM

Just remember, people aren't always looking for interesting, just function.

The function required is a small remote terminal, itx covers that base nicely.
January 24, 2013 2:32:32 PM

yes, true that, i guess im power cruncher :p 

January 24, 2013 2:37:32 PM

I know what you mean, on more than one occasion i've been over zealous with some ones build because gaming PC's are the norm here.
January 24, 2013 2:38:49 PM

no but i mean ive been stuck with slow pcs, or slower than average and when ur stuck loading something its really annoying :p 

January 24, 2013 2:47:09 PM

I know what you mean there as well, remember my first computer well with it's super fast 66mhz processor :lol: 

Back on topic though for the OP. Basically, there's some good system been suggested here, now just really a case of picking which you prefer.
January 24, 2013 3:36:12 PM

yep, i always give the option to the op, hes buying not mee :D , its like a candyshop, the tailor at the shop advices u the best type of candies and u choose what u like :p ,

altought thats a simplistic way of seeing it, its an interesting comparison.

January 24, 2013 3:53:28 PM

iceclock said:
yes i gave him a micro-atx case, and good components.

i could suggest a micro-itx build. whynot, but i find u sarcrifice performance.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/uk/p/zjSc/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD A4-3400 2.7GHz Dual-Core Processor (£29.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Motherboard: ASRock A75M-ITX Mini ITX FM1 Motherboard (£64.18 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Kingston 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£18.20 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Hitachi 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£39.72 @ Scan.co.uk)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced (Black) Mini ITX Tower Case (£32.38 @ Scan.co.uk)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £232.77
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 16:02 GMT+0000)

more costly and less interesting.


Thanks!


January 24, 2013 3:54:42 PM

mikerockett said:
Thought i'd add my two cents in here first. Here's my take on a mini itx build for this budget. Decided to step away from the norm and stick an SSD in there. As your only use is remoting into your computer at work i'm imagining you don't need storage on this computer. Also for that reason i haven't included a DVD drive as you can install either from a bootable USB or over LAN.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Pentium G550 2.6GHz Dual-Core Processor (£31.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H61N-USB3 Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard (£57.13 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Crucial 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1066 Memory (£17.51 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Crucial V4 32GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£35.00 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 120 Advanced (Black) Mini ITX Tower Case (£32.38 @ Scan.co.uk)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply (£35.32 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £209.33
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 15:23 GMT+0000)


Thanks! I see actually you suggested the more interesting case :) 
January 24, 2013 3:59:30 PM

what u prefer a slower itx build or faster micro-atx?

January 24, 2013 5:20:29 PM

iceclock said:
what u prefer a slower itx build or faster micro-atx?



I would go for the itx build in theory but the case is still quite a bit larger than the old Shuttle systems I am comparing it to. I am trying to work out if I can get a smaller box as I have no need for an external graphics card, for example. As it stands the itx system doesn't really take up much less space than the micro-atx it seems.
January 24, 2013 5:38:57 PM

I still don't know where you are getting it from that ITX is slower. What will determine the speed is the CPU and memory, not the size of the board. The only difference is that ITX is more compact, which has some advantages (size), some disadvantages (cost, flexibility to expand). I would say if you can fit everything you want, go for the ITX. If you aren't sure about fit or you want to leave open some room to expand in the future, go Micro-ATX.
January 24, 2013 6:08:31 PM

Aristotelian said:
I still don't know where you are getting it from that ITX is slower. What will determine the speed is the CPU and memory, not the size of the board. The only difference is that ITX is more compact, which has some advantages (size), some disadvantages (cost, flexibility to expand). I would say if you can fit everything you want, go for the ITX. If you aren't sure about fit or you want to leave open some room to expand in the future, go Micro-ATX.



I think iceclock means speed per pound for the whole system.
January 24, 2013 7:07:21 PM

yes less its about price to performance ratio +1

January 24, 2013 7:16:56 PM

OK, I see your point, but the choice is not between size and speed, it is between size and price/flexibility. It is misleading to frame the choice as "slower ITX" vs "faster micro-ATX" or to suggest that there is any dropoff in performance.
!