How to build a media/gaming PC under $1000?
Juan Carlos Gonzalez
I want to build a PC to connect to an AV Receiver that connects to a HD TV and 5.1 Surround Sound System. I will be playing on my bed. I need the PC to be the smallest possible so that it does not occupy a lot of space. I only want to play some strategy games like Starcraft II, Shogun 2, etc or adventure RPG like the Witcher 2 and 3.
You should look into a mini ITX build. They can be tough for beginners because they're small cases, but there are plenty of tiny cases that will allow you to fit a high-end graphics card. Your build budget would look something like this:
Case: $75 - Lian Li and Silverstone have some great mini ITX cases on newegg.com, the site I use to buy components.
Storage: $70 for a 1TB HDD
GPU: $300 for a GTX 660 or similar
MoBo: $90 Search for Mini ITX Motherboard. ASRock makes a great H77 model
PSU: $70 You need a 500W modular PSU made by Seasonic, Antec, or PC Power and Cooling
Memory: $50 get the cheapest two 4GB 240pin DDR3 sticks you can find. Usually Crucial has the lowest price offering.
CPU: $170 Grap the cheapest Ivy Bridge i5 you can find. i3 will be sufficient if you're not worried about Directx 11 games.
Disc Drive: $20
Total is $900ish and that will run anything.
It is true that you can upgrade a mid tower with ease, but there aren't very many things a mid tower can do that a mini tower cannot. What upgrade do you anticipate having to do? One of the main reasons for having a mid tower is that you can fit more than 6 hard drives in it. If you don't plan on needing 6 hard drives operating in your case simultaneously or using more than three GPUs at the same time, then there aren't a lot of advantages that mid towers have.