Basic ~£200 Home PC for my Mum

Approximate Purchase Date: End of the month, her birthday is on 1st Sept :P

Budget Range: Around £200. It isn't a strict budget but I don't think I really need to spend any more than that.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Web Browsing and listening to music

Are you buying a monitor: No, got a cheap Dell 17'' monitor

Parts to Reuse: Don't have to reuse all of these but I have: 500GB WD Scorpio Black (2.5'' and 7200RPM), full sized DVD burner (Samsung I think), Netgear USB Wireless N adapter.

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Any reputable UK site is fine

Location: Manchester, UK

Parts Preferences: I like to stay away from OCZ SSD's, Biostar/ECS motherboards.

Overclocking: I'm open to the idea but really don't think it's necessary

SLI or Crossfire: No

Your Monitor Resolution: Think it's 1280x1024

- Most importantly, it just needs to feel quick for basic web browsing.
- It should be quiet, this isn't important to her but noisy PC's really annoy me :P
- A small, high quality case will make it seem a bit more special. That would be great.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Her current PC is an ancient P4 system with 512MB RAM so she is always using my laptop :P (My laptop is an MSI X370 with an AMD E-450 with 4GB RAM and she thinks that feels quick so she doesn't need anything fancy.)

I'm thinking of going for:

Intel Celeron G540 - £32.71 @ CCL Computers
2 x 2GB Corsair DDR3 1333Mhz 1.5v - £19.13 @ CCL Computers
MSI H61I-E35 Mini ITX - £45.13 @ Scan
WD Scorpio Black 500GB (Already Have)
Antec ISK 300-150 with 150W PSU - £64.79 @ CCL Computers (Tempted by the Lian Li PC-Q09B at £25 extra for the aluminium construction and external PSU.)
Samsung Slim DVD Burner - £15.48 @ Scan
Netgear USB Wireless N Adapter (Already Have)

Total - ~£182

What do you think guys?

25 answers Last reply
More about basic 200 home mum
  1. Looks a little bit faster but she wouldn't even notice that to be honest. Not really worth having the bigger case, I'm looking for something smaller to be honest.

    Thanks for the reply though.
  2. the case is slightly bigger than my 15 laptop turned 90 degrees up. its a really small case
  3. Thanks dude, I'll consider it.
  4. Starting to think it might be a good idea to get the version of the Antec case with the 65W external PSU and get the Celeron G460 or Pentium G630T for the sake of quietness. If that PSU is noisy I will want to replace it, and that can get expensive (for a £200 build)

    People might think the G460 is weak because it only has a single core but the performance seems to be equal to the mid range Core 2 Duos or a laptop i3. That's not too shabby for a PC that is just going to be used for Spotify, Youtube and Facebook. It's waaaaay faster than my E-450 and my mum thinks that's fast.
  5. id stick with a dual core pentium with the xfx 450w psu.

    how would a celeron beat a dual core i3 2310m when the i3 has 2 cores/4 threads and a higher clock ratio. not to mention the higher amount of cache.
  6. Just looked on some benchmarks and it seemed to be just as good as a 1st gen mobile i3. I'm not saying it beats the i3-2310m, I'm saying it seems equivalent to something like the i3-370m or a ~2Ghz desktop C2D.

    Also that Fractal Design case isn't small enough, not really what I'm looking for.
  7. oh ok then. i dont know any smaller cases than that ;D
  8. After much deliberation and looking through hundreds of cases, I think I'll go for this:

    Intel Celeron G540 (Dual Core)
    2x2GB Corsair 1333Mhz RAM
    Asus P8H61-I LX REV3 Mini ITX
    BeQuiet Pure Power L7 430W PSU
    Lian Li PC-Q07B

    Total is £190

    I'll use a 500GB WD Scorpio Black, Netgear wireless adapter and random optical drive I have lying around to finish off the build.

    Thanks for the help man.
  9. I would suggest an SSD, but that might be tight in a 200-pound build. here's one similar to yours:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Pentium G620 2.6GHz Dual-Core Processor (£45.54 @
    Motherboard: MSI H61I-E35 (B3) Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard (£45.13 @
    Memory: Kingston 4GB (1 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory (£15.58 @ CCL Computers)
    Storage: Kingston SSDNow V200 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£59.95 @ CCL Computers)
    Case: Antec ISK 300-150 Mini ITX Desktop Case w/150W Power Supply (£65.98 @
    Total: £232.18
    (Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-14 22:46 BST+0100)
  10. Yeah a SSD would be ideal (especially since my mum would fill 30GB max) but dunno if it's worth the extra when I have that hard drive lying around. My mum has used plenty of laptops with 5400RPM drives in the past and doesn't complain about load times. Even if she does with this one, I could always add the SSD later.
  11. very true. stick with the hard drive. if it is possible, you can get a h77 board and later on do SSD caching
  12. It would be cheaper to just buy H61 and a large enough SSD, she doesn't need much space at all.
  13. What I would do if I were going for "cheap, tiny, and cute" is this:

    Apex MI-008 Mini ITX case and Asus P8-H77I mobo (combo)

    Corsair Nova 30GB SSD

    Intel Celeron G540

    G.Skill NS 4GB RAM

    WD Caviar Blue 500GB

    If you bought that today, with the promo code on the Caviar, it would cost you about £209 all from Newegg (excluding shipping). You might be able to go cheaper at other merchants.

    If you decided to use the hard drive you already have, that either cuts the price by about £40 or gives you room to upgrade to an SSD big enough to hold applications as well as Windows.

    (For a light user like your mom, the SSD is going to have by far the biggest impact on her perception of how 'quick' the system is - she's going to notice load and boot times more than anything else. She may not have complained about them, but give her a properly-configured SSD boot drive and she'll think she has the best computer on the planet.)
  14. I can't buy from newegg and the prices aren't really good for reference either I'm afraid, US prices are way lower than UK. I am a bit tempted to put the HDD in an enclosure and sell it then buy a cheap 40-60GB SSD though.
  15. as you said earlier that she doesnt mind the speed of a 5400rpm drive. id keep it for now but when you have the money to get the SSD, toss it in
  16. I have been tempted by the SSD idea, think I'm going to get a 32GB Crucial v4. Just in case anyone cares :P
  17. win 7 will need 20gb min, more like 30 with all updates, get a 60 GB at least
  18. ok then.
  19. Nah I'll use 32 Bit, that's only 10GB as far as I'm aware. She just eneds enough space for a web browser and like 500MB worth of programs, 32GB is fine.
  20. 32-it uses 20 gb, 64 uses 30.

    32 bit slso only uses 3.25 GB of RAM
  21. In that case I'd be spending ~£50 on an upgrade she might not appreciate or even notice. I might just stick with the Scorpio Black.
  22. im pretty dam sure that 32bit is 15gb and 64bit is 20. guess i might be wrong
  23. TheBigTroll said:
    im pretty dam sure that 32bit is 15gb and 64bit is 20. guess i might be wrong

    for initial install, but then you have to consider all the security updates and drivers and whatall
  24. I'll see how generous I'm feeling on the day I get the system, maybe I'll get this :P
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