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From Zero to Even, I Can't

vikingXcore

49 months ago

My friend is wanting a portable LAN rig since his laptop died. Something small. Just got off deployment so he's got a chunk of change he can dump. He has a gaming rig , but he needs something he can carry with little to no problem. It must be able to handle multitasking. IRC chat, skype, some gaming, and web browsers/pdf's or whatever format his anime novella collection is in. I mean, this is something an i3 and a GTX 950 can handle, right?

This is where it gets messed up.

Requirements: Super small and cute skylake/DDR4 RAM R9 Nano mass storage (undecided)

Yep... a nano... why??? "Because it's cute and small and can fit in my pocket like a kitten!"

I just... I can't even.

Well, this is what I selected. I picked these parts to be as small as possible and my budget I was given was no more than $1500. Man the latest and greatest are not easy on the wallet.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

Type Item Price
CPU *Intel Core i5-6500 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor $204.99 @ Amazon
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-H170N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1151 Motherboard $115.99 @ SuperBiiz
Memory *G.Skill NT Series 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memory $45.99 @ Newegg
Video Card *XFX Radeon R9 Nano 4GB Video Card $630.66 @ Amazon
Case Lian-Li PC-TU100B Mini ITX Tower Case $96.99 @ SuperBiiz
Power Supply *Silverstone 600W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular SFX Power Supply $117.99 @ Directron
Prices include shipping, taxes, rebates, and discounts
Total $1212.61
*Lowest price parts chosen from parametric criteria
Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-06 07:18 EDT-0400

Any i5, even haswell or ivybridge let alone skylake, will suffice pairing with the R9 Nano.

1 stick of 8 GB of RAM to allow for expansion (16 GB of RAM is just silly at this point in time). I figured anything cas 15 or less should be good right?

I've had experience with the Gigabyte-Z97N-Wifi mITX motherboard and was very pleased with quality, temps, and overclocking, so H170 should do well too, but that's an assumption since I think they changed the design a bit between the two chipsets.

Undecided on storage but he's worried about the life of the hard drive and is very wary of going with a SSD. I think He wants a spin drive that will last him a long time.

The case was chosen because it's small and well-built and has a handle which are the requirements he wanted. Specifically small as possible with a handle.

The PSU I chose because of SFX form factor the case requires, modular cables, 80+ gold, built by Silverstone (who makes great SFX PSUs) and 600W which is as big as they get currently.

No aftermarket heatsink because it's a locked i5 which do come with heatsinks.

Issues: It's a pain in the nether regions to find reviews on what's considered good RAM or good motherboard, so these were chosen based off of experience with those brands in the past year or two.

If there are higher wattage rated SFX PSUs with great quality, I would definitely like to know.

I would only consider replacing intel heat sink if it does not perform adequately; noise is not an issue. An idea was to use the super small Cryorig aftermarket cooler which has great performance for the price.

Is there a smaller case that can fit a dual-slotted mITX card and still look great? TU200B was an alternative.

Color scheme not entirely important, as this case doesn't have a window, but I would like to deck this thing out with fans for airflow.

Suggestions/comments appreciated!

Comments

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Any i5, even haswell or ivybridge let alone skylake, will suffice pairing with the R9 Nano.

exactly....

I would only consider replacing intel heat sink if it does not perform adequately; noise is not an issue. An idea was to use the super small Cryorig aftermarket cooler which has great performance for the price.

you shouldn't have problems with the stock cooler, but the new cryorig C7 is definitely a very nice option..

Undecided on storage but he's worried about the life of the hard drive and is very wary of going with a SSD

this case will only fit 2.5 drives.. I would go with the 850 EVO SSD..

You can change the 120mm front panel fan with a noctua fan.

This is a very nice build!! I really like it...

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I appreciate your comments. I hope to have this build posted in completed builds section in the next month or two.

Are the 850 EVOs really reliable? I'm trying to comfort my friend about getting a 500/512GB (whatever the size is) that he could use everything. I know that SSDs were kind of garbage with the first couple of iterations, but nowadays with most of them having 5+ year warranties, it should be no big deal right?

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

The 850 EVO's are some of the most reliable drives on the market today :)

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

just as Godzlegend1 commented , they are great!!

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

This looks good. And finally a valid use for the nano... that case might not fir a fury x cooler, or anything of comparable performance, so a nano really does come in handy here.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Yep, it is a really niche device, but it will definitely come in handy.

He's looking to pick up a monitor later; I'm trying to convince him a 1080p@60Hz monitor is a complete waste of a nano, that it was meant for 2k+. Even being overkill for 1080p@144Hz in a lot of games. The prices currently for a 1440p monitor is still pretty high, so he might either wait til Black Friday or the Monday after to buy one, or get an Acer GN246HL or the Asus variant of the panel (high quality panel; I have the Acer myself) which is cheaper and make more sense than a standard 1080p@60Hz panel.

EDIT:Oh, I need to check connections to make sure I'm getting what I need from the Nano and monitor. Time for some google-fu!

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

ya, a 1440p is definitely what that card should be paired with

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Howdy dude..

Wow that was a pre-op recce report if I ever saw one.. :D

Jest aside, I'd definitely consider an after-market good heat-sink after regularly seeing intel stock coolers touch 80-1000 C in stress-tests.. Do u think a locked i5 runs ice-cold during heavy gaming sessions ??

Link 1: http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/6131/be-quiet-dark-rock-3-cpu-cooler-review/index6.html Link 2: http://www.nikktech.com/main/images/pics/reviews/cryorig/h7/temps.jpg

B. The locked skylake i5 and the MBoard look very good indeed, though I'd say go with a Z170 mITX as generally Z-boards have a higher VRM/VRC (voltage Regulation Module -- The guts of any Mboard ?? -- http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-motherboard-voltage-regulator-circuit/ )

I'd recommend the latest Z170 mITX sensation - The ASUS Z170i Pro Gaming -- for around $160, the problem is it's Prices going to be announced in about 10 days time when the skylake i3 prices are going to be available..

http://us.hardware.info/productinfo/317474/asus-z170i-pro-gaming/testresults

http://www.reviewstudio.net/2337-asus-z170i-pro-gaming-review-mini-itx-rig-for-gaming/value-and-conclusion

http://techteamgb.co.uk/2015/09/28/asus-z170i-pro-gaming-motherboard-review/

Actually I have seen many dudes waiting for this very board...

C. The RAM for the DDR4 skylake is, if money isn't an object, without any doubt is the latest release Kingston Savage with a cas of 13 when compared to a cas 15, but it also costs about $14 more per stick SO.. Among the normal cas 15 DDR4, GSkill Ripjaws V was as well as the Crucial Ballistix sport were all the rage but that was before the Kingston Savage arrived.. Actually it's a see-saw day-in/day-out changing scenario, the reviews that I have favoring the Crucial Ballistix sport is about 6-7 months old & quite useless now..

I'd say the R9 Nano, even tho' its probbly a choice based more on cosmetic reasons, technically too its a SUPER choice as with the advent of DirectX 12 stack (Read Windows 10) favoring Multi-GPU and with AMD having Asynchronous shaders built-into the GPU ground up, they have proved to perform much better than NVIDIA on win 10..

see the 980 Ti beaten by the FuryX on DirectX 12 Stack cs:go (Read Windows 10).. http://cdn.overclock.net/e/e3/900x900px-LL-e307bdc9_CBCSGO.PNG

Watch the MIGHTY 980 Ti clocking lower FPS on "Ashes of Singularity" than the tiny R9 290X on DirectX 12: http://cdn.overclock.net/0/04/900x900px-LL-04c10d94_percentile.002-980x720.png

http://www.overclock.net/t/1570780/dso-amd-s-directx-12-advantage-explained-gcn-architecture-more-friendly-to-parallelism-than-maxwell

All the best. take care..

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Jest aside, I'd definitely consider an after-market good heat-sink after regularly seeing intel stock coolers touch 80-1000 C in stress-tests.. Do u think a locked i5 runs ice-cold during heavy gaming sessions ??

Well that is frightening, and did you include the be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3 just to show temps of the intel stock cooler, because that wouldn't fit in that case xD. For what he plays, I doubt he would break 60 in temps, but even 60 is a bit high for my liking, so I'll look into cheap low profile coolers whence we get this thing up and running and check temps (probably remove the stock paste and apply some Arctic V on there.)

I understand your point with the Z170 motherboard, but I can't see spending extra money on any features, especially paired with the i5-6500. If we are able to get money allocated for an unlocked i5, a Z170 mobo, and a Cryorig C7 cpu cooler, I will keep this in consideration since the price of the Asus gaming is really not a bad deal, and, of course, Asus quality.

The RAM would be a killer if I could get better than what was chosen, but at this point, it's what is cheapest at the moment. I'm just hoping the voltage isn't too high and the cas isn't too high at this time.

Yes, I've read all about the Dx3D12 news which is awesome and besides that, the Nano will never be changed for something of lesser performance, so no worries there :D.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

and, of course, Asus quality.

Pleased to be talking to an experienced campaigner.. :D

The best ppl are the ones who say no with a reason, Who better 2 know ur situation than urself.. ??

If this helps in the selection of a thermal paste,
http://forum.techinferno.com/alienware/7460-tested-all-thermal-paste-range-best-them.html

Best of luck with the mITX..

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