Description

For our Fractal Design Define Mini C build, we wanted to focus a bit more on aesthetics while targeting a price point around $850. To give a baseline for the performance we wanted to see at this budget, we started with an Intel Core i5 6500 in an H170 motherboard and opted for a GTX 1060 video card.

The Define Mini C prides itself on keeping things quiet while still promoting good airflow. To help with that admirable goal for quiet, and to make things look a little nicer through the large side window, we opted for an aftermarket CPU cooler. In this case, the Cryorig C7 offered a nice improvement over the stock cooler for both noise and looks without breaking the budget.

Rather than split our storage budget between two drives, we decided to just go with a larger M.2 SSD. A secondary HDD could always be added later if needed, but using an M.2 drive kept things clean and simple internally while still allowing plenty of storage for some games.

If you have any questions about the build let me know!

A big thanks to Fractal Design for providing the case and power supply used in this build.

Now on to some benchmarks.

Benchmark 3DMark Score Graphics Test 1 Graphics Test 2 Physics Test Combined Test
FireStrike v1.1 9942 63.17 FPS 53.02 FPS 20.7 FPS 22.14 FPS
Benchmark Score Average Minimum Maximum Settings
Unigine Heaven Benchmark 4.0 1608 63.8 FPS 8.6 FPS 136.2 FPS Direct3D11, 1920x1080, 8xAA, fullscreen, Custom Preset: Quality: Ultra, Tessellation: Extreme
Unigine Valley Benchmark 1.0 2754 65.8 FPS 24.3 FPS 132.8 FPS Direct3D11, 1920x1080, 8xAA, fullscreen, Extreme HD Preset
Game Settings Resolution FPS Notes
Overwatch Epic 1920x1080 105 FPS CPU@98%, 67°C; GPU@90-95%, 73°C
Battlefield 1 High 1920x1080 65 FPS CPU@100%, 66°C; GPU@75-84%, 68°C

Comments

  • 37 months ago
  • 18 points

That RAM looks lonely :(

  • 37 months ago
  • 13 points

I like to imagine it enjoys the elbow room..

  • 37 months ago
  • 3 points

I'll adopt it if you guys don't want it....

  • 37 months ago
  • 3 points

Can you buy another stick so it can have some company? :(

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

I think it would enjoy a friend more...

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

It so does!!

  • 37 months ago
  • 6 points

+1 For picture quality

  • 37 months ago
  • 4 points

My 1060 3Gb did better than your 6Gb in firestrike Chuckles

on a more serious note nice to see it on the site in the build section. Staffgonnafeaturestaff

  • 37 months ago
  • 4 points

I saw your build, and the factor so your biuld have better score is probably the CPU, yours is better, and you overclocked to 4.5GHz, which is 1.3GHz faster, and that's a big difference. But you should look at the Graphics score, his might be better because of the 6GB and the faster GPU clock.

But anyway, both are great 1080p gaming PCs.

  • 37 months ago
  • 3 points

This build is awesome. It's great to show that you can get a rig that looks great and performs well for under $1000.

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

I have to question your application of the cpu cooler, my 6500 goes to 61 on the stock cooler and 47 on a m9i

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Can't wait to check out the video on youtube when I get home. Nice case.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

This build looks awesome! I'm researching for my first build, would this set up support two 1080p monitors without killing the frame rate?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Can you elaborate? What are you considering doing on the second monitor? For just keeping an eye on secondary apps (voice chat, browser, etc) it shouldn't have much impact. Or did you mean running a game across both screens?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry, yes to be able to game on both

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Ah, ok. It will definitely have an impact for it to render to two screens. How much probably depends on the game. For context, can you give an example or two of some dual screen games you are considering?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Cool job i gotta say.

And good job barry for only using 2 zipties.

+100 but i can't

ALSO: How do those pictures come out so good, do you mind if I ask what camera you use?

  • 37 months ago
  • 3 points

Thanks MannyPCs. I've been taking the photos lately for our builds and use my FujiFilm X100T. I make some minor adjustments in Lightroom before submitting them for use in a build. Glad you like them!

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you very much. Definitely a good camera :)

I just wanted to ask how a galaxy note 4/5 would take pictures because I plan on using one for my build?

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

Not sure, I've never used the camera on a Note 4/5.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

A major reason @philcoffman's photos look good is that, for these, he had very good studio lighting.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow from thr front it looks like standard slr camera my wife had when we got married. Cool.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

I used to shoot with a Nikon DSLR but got tired of juggling multiple lenses. One of the things I love about the X100T is it's size and that it's a fixed lens system. The size entices me to carry it around more frequently. The fixed lens limitation forces me to be more creative with my shots and I love not having to worry about bringing along other lenses. My wallet appreciates that as well.

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

That's a great plug for the product, man. Youve obviously got the touch though. It's not just the camera.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice. This case just came out today I believe. I think I'll choose it over the Define Nano S for its extra GPU breathing room space.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Not a huge ASRock fan as I've had multiple boards fail on me after a couple months but it's cheap so not a big deal. Hopefully that doesn't happen to you. Solid budget build though. Good job +1

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

SithEgg?

Imperial march begins playing

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Not a huge ASRock fan as I've had multiple boards fail on me after a couple months

If you had that many boards either you are the most unlucky person ever or something else is causing it.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Guess I'm unlucky then. Still not a fan.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

1+ Awesome!

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Haven't seen this SSD in a while. Props for using it!

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

I helped a guy put together a build a couple weeks back with the 2.5-inch version of this drive. Great little SSD!

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

A little puzzled on why a single DRAM stick rather than two; aren't you losing out on dual-channel bandwidth?

Hope you registered the serial number on that Crucial SSD before posting a crystal-clear photo of it... :-)

Elsewise, a very crisp build.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Is the gtx PNY any good? Did you encounter any problems with it that other 1060s wouldnt face?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

So do you buy all the parts and build it home, or do you order a full pc that's already built?

  • 33 months ago
  • 1 point

you would order all the parts to your house and build it youroself, but if you could find someone to do it for you that would work if your not comfortable with building it yourself

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Pretty and clean.

Thumbs up.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build! Can you guys help me, im gonna have my first pc build before december, and im still not decided with motherboard and cpu cooler, can you guys drop a comment, here's my plan build: http://pcpartpicker.com/list/LpJjWX

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi just wanted to reply and let you know that the motherboard is great and your cpu cooler is good to but in my opinion I would switch it out for a corsair Hi100.

  • 37 months ago
  • 0 points

Holy cow that is going to be a sexy build. Make sure to take pictures!

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Lucky you! I just recently started considering this case to migrate my components. Can you post a picture of the case comparing it's size to, let's say, a PS4 or XBox ONE (the original)? Want to see how compact really is :)

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

The ram is lonely. ;-;

Still a good build and nice pictures! +1

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

did you test it on GTA online?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

That ram stick has no new friends

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Think you could fit another 1060 in there? I really love the look of 2 gpus in a smaller case. +1

  • 35 months ago
  • 2 points

I agree.. dual GPUs can look quite nice in a smaller case.. though it can be fun to manage temps. (I used to run dual R9 280X's in a small Silverstone. Worked well as a heater for those cold winter weeks in Texas).

Anyway, technically it would probably fit.. but the 1060 doesn't support SLI (nor does this motherboard, I believe). If you had the extra $250 in your budget, I would probably suggest spending it towards getting a single 1070 instead. :)

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

I would definitely agree for most of that, i am a sucker for how it looks though :P

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey there.

This may be a difficult favour, I would really appreciate it though. How does the i5 6500 perform on overwatch without any gpu limitations (turn down graphical settings or resolution). I would like to see if an i5 6500 is able to perform 144fps on overwatch.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Do you mean the i5-6500 w/ a GTX 1060 like we built here? or with only the iGPU? The GPU is a big part of that equation. I believe we still have this build setup for testing, so I could check. Given we were already getting 105 fps on Epic, then I'd expect you could likely achieve your goal of 144 fps at High/1080p with the 1060 in place.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

I am more so trying to find figures of how well the i5 6500 can perform in Overwatch, when the GPU is powerful enough. I noticed the GTX 1060 may bottleneck a little which is why I suggested turning down resolution, to boost the GPUs performance. The iGPU would probably bottleneck the results so the GTX 1060 would be better.

Given we were already getting 105 fps on Epic, then I'd expect you could likely achieve your goal of 144 fps at High/1080p with the 1060 in place.

That's what I'm trying to figure out really. If the CPU isn't powerful however, 144 fps wouldn't be possible, no matter the resolution or graphical settings.

Thank you, very much.

  • 35 months ago
  • 2 points

I wouldn't be concerned about the i5 being a limited factor in Overwatch.. but I ran a few quick rounds at lower settings to see where the breaking point would be for 144Hz. Dropping the settings to 1080p/Medium/100% resolution scale saw a pretty reliable 165-175 frame rate. Just FYI, it was close at 1080p/High/100% -- where I saw ~135fps. You could probably tweak between Medium/High to get satisfactory results.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you, very much.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Not sure if you got the last message or not.

Sorry my patience is low, just checking in.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

No worries, but it'll probably be early next week before I'll have a chance to bench it.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Great! Thank you. I won't be back until next Friday anyways.

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, I'm planning on a similar build for my first PC, which will instead have a 2.5" SSD and Gigabyte's G1 Gaming GTX 1060 6GB. I'm wondering why a 550W supply was chosen. From what I've read and seen so far, a (good quality) 500W or even 450W supply would work just as well - is this true?

  • 32 months ago
  • 2 points

You are correct -- this system would work perfectly fine with a good 450 or 500W unit if that keeps things in the right budget for what you are planning. ( I think the max draw for this build was only in the 300W range.) Of course, double check the wattage calculator on your part list as well.

So then why did we choose 550W? There were lots of decent options in that range that kept us within our $850 budget requirements for this build. So dropping to 450-500W wouldn't have significantly changed the price but could reduce future upgrade options unnecessarily. (Imagine upgrading to a higher end video card or adding additional storage over time -- slowly increasing the power needs).

Hope that helps -- good luck with your build!

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for replying!

While my budget isn't fixed to a specific price, in terms of upgrading-capability I don't anticipate doing anything more than adding a second SSD, or perhaps swapping out the 1060 for a 1070 somewhere down the line.

With that in mind I took your build and whittled it down, and am now eyeing an H110M chipset motherboard. While I'm aware that I should choose a board with enough fan headers for the Mini-C case, is there anything else I should look out for, and do you recommend any specific brands or models?

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

If you want to stick to Skylake, I'd probably recommend you bump up to a B150 or H170 board. To see Skylake recommendations you would need to look at versions of our Guides from before January 2017 (check the history on the left side of the Guide pages).

I think the only place we've suggested some options for H110 boards any time recently was for our older (non-gaming) Home Office PC Guide. Prices and availability likely shifted a bit as the new boards released, but you can check for ideas on B150 boards in our older Entry Level and Great Gaming Guides. You can check out some ideas for H170 boards in our older Modest Gaming Guide. And of course, you can also check the current version of those guides for Kaby Lake board recommendations if you're not tied into Skylake for any particular reason.

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks once again for your advice. I've decided to go with the same motherboard that you chose, as it's one of the cheaper ones for the amount of I/O I'm looking for (in an H170m board).

I was set on the i5 6500 until this morning when I noticed that the i5 7500 was 0.2GHz faster and actually cheaper. However, as it's a Kaby Lake CPU I'd need an Asrock motherboard with a BIOS version of P7.00 or higher. Asrock released that version in October 2016; do you think there's a risk of me receiving a board with an earlier BIOS version and have to find some way to reflash it?

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

If I were to guess, I'd think more than likely it won't have been updated. It just depends on how quickly they've sold thru their inventory over the past couple months. If you have an older compatible CPU around, you'll be able to update the BIOS anyway, but if not you might want to try to call the retailer to ask if they can verify the BIOS version of what they have in stock.

Alternatively, you could perhaps go with the Kaby Lake version of the motherboard instead -- the ASRock H270M Pro4. It's about $10-$15 more, but you know it will work (plus the general bonus of the newer chipset).

  • 29 months ago
  • 1 point

Awesome build , quiet and powerful

  • 29 months ago
  • 1 point

Ahh I remember when RAM and GPUs were that cheap...

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

I’m so going to try and build this...

  • 34 months ago
  • 0 points

Man, dont buy a 1060 with 6GB its not worth it. 3 or 4 fps diference.

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