Description

This is a build I made for my girlfriend for our 7th anniversary. Her laptop from university was in the way out, so I asked her what she would want from a pc if she had one, and all she specified was 'pink' and small.

Taking this on board, I added a few other ideas of my own to try and make it suit her. I tried to keep the costs down, and also to make sure that the build was good for browsing and medium quality gaming. I also tried to make it efficient whilst doing this.

With this in mind I have built a mini-itx with quad core kabini paired with the lovely 750ti.

CPU: AMD 5350, I chose this cpu because it seemed to have a good performance per watt, and is relatively cheap. It seems to keep up well with all the tasks that have been thrown at it so far.

Motherboard: This seemed like a great motherboard, more expensive than a lot of the other AM1 motherboards, but with the full length PCIE and 4 SATA ports whilst still being mini-itx, this one seemed like the only choice for this build. Another thing which is interesting about this board is that if a graphics card is not used, it can run off a laptop power supply from a socket at the back, with the SATA power coming from a connector on the board itself (which I used in this case for the DVD drive and 3.5" hard drive.

RAM: 8gb should be plenty for the missus. The reason I chose a single stick is mainly because at the time it was cheaper than a 2x4gb set, and the kabini processors only support single channel ram anyway, so the second slot on the board is free if it is ever needed anyway.

Drives: 64GB SSD, 1TB Hard Drive. Got pretty good deals on the SSD and HDD, HDD for storage, SSD for boot. They both seem to be pretty good drives.

GPU: 750ti Chosen because according to the reviews has a great performance per watt. With the games my girlfriend has played so far, it seems to be very good. It has mostly been L4D2 and some of the Lego games (the Lego games are great for co-op support with a controller!).

CASE: Wanted a Mini-ITX case which supported a full sized graphics card and a full sized PSU. This case seemed to fir the bill well. The reason I chose the white version is to make it easier to spray paint.

PSU: Made sure I got a 80+ bronze PSU from a good brand, with a low power ceiling, to improve its efficiency when using the low wattage parts.

DVD Drive: It was the cheapest one, took the front off and sprayed it pink.

OS: Windows, since she probably wouldn't like a linux OS (I have Ubuntu on my own secondary PC).

Wifi Adapter: This adapter looked like a pretty good one, a USB dongle with a proper directional antenna, it seems to work very well.

Build: No real problems on the build, the spray painting required several coats, the particular paint was chosen as it can apparently cope very well with high temperatures. Anyone in the UK who is interested, I bought it from Wilkinsons, although I'm sure for anyone else there must be equally appropriate paints.

I also had to use a hair-dryer to melt the cooler master logo off the front. there is a small hole behind the logo, and once the glue holding it on has melted, you can push it out with a screwdriver.

Other than this, I don't think I would use a non-modular power supply on a Mini-ITX case again, as tying the cables back was quite difficult, and as the 750ti has no extra power connectors, and none of the molex connectors (or floppy connector...sigh) were connected either, there was plenty to tie back.

All in all, I am happy with this build. I just have to upload my others now!

Please leave any comments or criticisms below.

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Comments

  • 62 months ago
  • 5 points

Nice Build man!! She is darn lucky! +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Cheers man, she seems to appreciate it!

  • 62 months ago
  • 5 points

It's adorable. :D Great job, great idea.

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice build and nice paint job

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Well, Its certainly pink. +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 3 points

That's what she asked for, so that's what she got!

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice paint job! +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Very unusual it really does separate its self from other builds. +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice Build plus the pain job! +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice idea to get the CM logo off. +1

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah it wasn't too difficult, actually overheated the panel a bit and it started to flex a little. Then I had to wait for it to cool down a bit so I didn't ruin the front panel.

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice, I think the two different shades in the front looks great!

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Cheers buddy :-)

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice! Very good work man. I had almost the same requirements from my gf, settled for white and some other stuff. Seeing this though... I might have to do this at some point. Will post the build when it's finished, started it last night after work.

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Cheers, painting isn't too bad as long as you choose one which says it will work on the surfaces you're using. The metal on the case took some sanding too before the paint would adhere properly.

Good luck on your build :-)

  • 60 months ago
  • 2 points

great gift she had!

What kind of paint was used? All purpose/surface? plastic? Metal?

I have used metal/car paint in the past and th result wasn't what I expected, required too much work. I want to paint some cases and I'm not set yet. I won't be able to sand them (too many embossed details) so I was thiking of going with Vinyl paint. Any thoughts?

  • 60 months ago
  • 1 point

To be honest I was looking for a metal paint as I knew most of the outside of the cooler master case was aluminium, and the one I found that explicitly stated metal, and wasn't overly expensive, ended up being what I guess you would call all purpose, it basically claims most surfaces on the can.

So all purpose is probably a good direction, and needs to claim some heat resistance I would say.

The only issue you might have is that the paint did struggle with plastic, so that required some sanding for it to get purchase.

Hope that helps!

  • 60 months ago
  • 2 points

Where did you get the case??? Want to get it but not sure where.

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

If you click on the case in the parts list then pcpartpicker should link you to your local retailers :-) If you want a pink one you'll have to paint it yourself though!

  • 59 months ago
  • 2 points

GREAT paint job!

  • 59 months ago
  • 1 point

Cheers! Has been well appreciated so worth the effort :-)

  • 50 months ago
  • 2 points

Just like candy!

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

coolest gift ever nice work all around

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Pink yas.

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

this is def similar to Austin Evan's Bozon PC

64GB SSD can get filled up quite fast with the OS and updates alone

128 seem to be the better option

good build

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Googled that build (As I've never heard of it), and I sort of disagree. That build uses minimal ram, and a weak gpu (r7 240?). It is a larger form factor, no SSD, and the power supply included with the case must be terrible at that price.

I agree somewhat with the SSD comment though, perhaps it could do with being larger, but as it is just being used as an OS boot drive it shouldn't run out of space any time soon.

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Yea Austin's pc is more of a budget buld for minecraft gaming.

I used a 128gb ssd and using windows 8 and just my usual programs like download manager and anti virus and it uses way beyond 64gb.

  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

I think at the moment there is literally nothing but the OS on there, and it has lots of space left, the 1TB deals with the other programs nicely :-)

  • 62 months ago
  • 2 points

Windows updates are big.

You'll be fine on space just micromanage it nicely and be sure to only keep the bare minimum on it. :D

  • 60 months ago
  • 1 point

Will there be any upgrades done to the system in the near future?

  • 60 months ago
  • 1 point

No current plans, but if I was going to upgrade one component right now without spending too much money? I'd go for a full modular SFX power supply, to improve air flow and space inside the case.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi. Impressive work ! I like to do things like that by myself as well so I know the joy after project done !GOOD JOB . I want to ask you about performance and OC and how its working at all like speed or any lag . I want to play SC2 in ITX build with same hardware as yours just smaller case as I do not use DVD anymore :) . Please try to write back any feedback at all , will be very appreciated. Many tks Marian .

  • 51 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, thanks for the compliments, much appreciated.

For the purposes it is used for this build is great, but looking up the recommended requirements for Starcraft 2 (This is SC2 yes?), I think you may need a more powerful CPU, as the one used in this build is not really overclockable.

I would recommend an Athlon 860k with an fm2+ motherboard, and a good cooler for overclock, or any intel i5 with appropriate motherboard, which shouldn't need overclocking.

The graphics, ram and storage used in this build should be fine for your purposes.

Hope this helps, I can recommend a specific fm2+ motherboard for you if you like, or an i5 and motherboard combination.

  • 55 months ago
  • -2 points

that cpu man I have it.. and it sucks

  • 55 months ago
  • 3 points

I disagree, my girlfriend is very happy with it, we use the pc all the time for watching netflix and office-y sort of stuff, with 8gb of ram, a gpu and an ssd it flies in my opinion.

[comment deleted]
  • 62 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks buddy, the combined TDP of the CPU and GPU is only 100W, so it gets great performance per watt, especially when gaming!