Computers & Electronics

Low end computer build - need motherboard CPU RAM PSU

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  • Jan 12th, 2020 8:54 pm
[OP]
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Dec 24, 2008
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Belle River

Low end computer build - need motherboard CPU RAM PSU

Basically I need to find deals for a motherboard, CPU, and RAM, and possibly PSU. I already have an SSD and 2 cases I can use, a micro ATX without PSU and an ITX with PSU. He already has a monitor keyboard etc.

Motherboard can be either micro ATX or ITX. Doesn't need to have any special features really, almost anything from a reputable brand will be fine.

CPU I figure an i3 will be more than enough. Maybe a Pentium Gold would be too but I'd prefer the i3 to give him a little extra.

RAM I just figure might as well go with 16GB. 2x8GB kits are sometimes only around $60 so why not?

PSU would be needed if we go with the micro ATX option which I imagine will be the case. Here almost anything would be fine just as long as it's a decent brand.
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Apr 29, 2018
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May I recommend the Asrock J4105 ITX. I use it in my NAS box, and it works pretty well. Plus it is super cheap at roughly $150. It mentions 8GB RAM max, but 16GB is confirmed working.
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Jan 8, 2015
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That board has an Intel Atom processor embedded. I wouldn't recommend that unless you know exactly what it's going to be used for.
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Dec 1, 2010
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hystavito wrote: Basically I need to find deals for a motherboard, CPU, and RAM, and possibly PSU. I already have an SSD and 2 cases I can use, a micro ATX without PSU and an ITX with PSU. He already has a monitor keyboard etc.

Motherboard can be either micro ATX or ITX. Doesn't need to have any special features really, almost anything from a reputable brand will be fine.

CPU I figure an i3 will be more than enough. Maybe a Pentium Gold would be too but I'd prefer the i3 to give him a little extra.

RAM I just figure might as well go with 16GB. 2x8GB kits are sometimes only around $60 so why not?

PSU would be needed if we go with the micro ATX option which I imagine will be the case. Here almost anything would be fine just as long as it's a decent brand.
How much did you want to spend in total and what do you plan on doing with it so we know what to work with?
[OP]
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Dec 24, 2008
2440 posts
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Belle River
kramer1 wrote: May I recommend the Asrock J4105 ITX. I use it in my NAS box, and it works pretty well. Plus it is super cheap at roughly $150. It mentions 8GB RAM max, but 16GB is confirmed working.
I don't want to go with something like that but thanks for the suggestion.
LockAndKey wrote: This one is pretty decent, 550W Gold rated for $72
https://www.mikescomputershop.com/product/9723255
Thanks. I recall getting low end PSUs like around 400w-500w for around $50 but maybe those were on sale? PSU prices make the ITX option more attractive since you get a case and 250w PSU for $60. I'm running 2 of these, a Gold and a Celeron, both seem to be OK but they don't have front USB3 so I would have to add a USB3 hub to make it convenient.
heyyahblah wrote: How much did you want to spend in total and what do you plan on doing with it so we know what to work with?
Total remaining budget for these parts is about $400. Basic use but I've already decided what I want to give him in general, I want to go a bit overpowered to be safe, so I'm just looking for the best deals on those parts. Although any alternate suggestions are helpful too.

Basically an i3-8100 or something similar if anyone knows. I think I want to avoid Ryzen because I personally have had too many problems with them. And then just basic stuff to go with it but decent brands, as I said a basic mATX or ITX motherboard, cheap/slow 16GB DDR4, and then if we go with mATX a PSU for it.
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Sep 5, 2006
567 posts
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Calgary
Can't go wrong with a Ryzen 2200G, 2400G, 3200G, or 3400G.

I haven't had any trouble with the 3200G in my file / Plex server. And I'm rocking the cheapest AM4 board I could find with 16GB of ddr4 3000.
Sr. Member
Sep 23, 2014
601 posts
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Toronto, ON
hystavito wrote: Thanks. I recall getting low end PSUs like around 400w-500w for around $50 but maybe those were on sale? PSU prices make the ITX option more attractive since you get a case and 250w PSU for $60. I'm running 2 of these, a Gold and a Celeron, both seem to be OK but they don't have front USB3 so I would have to add a USB3 hub to make it convenient.
I'd suggest to spend a bit more on a brand name PSU, to avoid the risk of the PSU killing/shortening the life of other components, you also have more headroom if you want to add/upgrade components in the future. You can check out this PSU tier list for reference, the EVGA i recommend is A tier.

I also saw this one on sale, $55 w/ $15 rebate. It's tier C from PSU tier list, but i dunno how well it would perform.
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hystavito wrote: Total remaining budget for these parts is about $400. Basic use but I've already decided what I want to give him in general, I want to go a bit overpowered to be safe, so I'm just looking for the best deals on those parts. Although any alternate suggestions are helpful too.

Basically an i3-8100 or something similar if anyone knows. I think I want to avoid Ryzen because I personally have had too many problems with them. And then just basic stuff to go with it but decent brands, as I said a basic mATX or ITX motherboard, cheap/slow 16GB DDR4, and then if we go with mATX a PSU for it.
Well you could have saved a bit more money by going with the Ryzen 3200G and Cheap Motherboard option, but since you don't like the way it performs and you have your heart set on Intel with good brands in mind as you mentioned, I was only able to come up with the following in mATX style with low profile RAM that will fit because I don't know what kind of clearance you have.

Intel Core i3-8100 3.6 GHz Quad-Core Processor - $160 (The Intel Core i3-9100 3.7 GHz Quad-Core Processor is available as well for the same price but it seems to be OOS at most places).
I believe the performance is the same. Intel Core i3-9100 (Stock Cooler and onboard GPU Intel UHD graphics 630)
Gigabyte B365M DS3H Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard - $99 (mATX board with 4 x DIMM slots incase you want more RAM in the future, M.2 interface for NVMe drive, 6 SATA 3 ports. Front USB 3.0 header to add USB 3.0 to the front of case)
Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-2666 Memory - $80 (standard DDR4 2666 speed for the 8100 or 9100 processor, and low profile/low clearance RAM with heat spreaders for compact builds)
PSU:
EVGA BR 500 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply - $62
SeaSonic S12III 500 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply - $62 (either or are ideal and good brands, I would prefer the Seasonic one because of the 5 year Warranty vs 3 year on the EVGA)

Total $402 + taxes
https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/list/cfJYWb
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 24, 2008
2440 posts
573 upvotes
Belle River
Thanks everyone.

I'm not near any of those stores like Canada Computers and all those around Toronto and such so it has to be available for purchase online. I was thinking of this PSU:
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00H33 ... EEQB&psc=1
I have low end EVGA PSUs in a few builds and they seem OK.

I am leaning more towards the mATX case now, just a very cheap one, it's going to be cooler and it has a window so he'll be able to visually see when it's time to clean some dust out. I asked him about case size if he ever has a reason to move his computer to another room or something and he said he never does that.

The only reason I want to go with Intel is fear of strange quirky problems with Ryzen, not the kinda problems that appear initially like during a memory test, odd stuff that happens at random later which I cannot explain. If you care to know why my story is below :). This PC I am building is for someone I only see briefly maybe 6 times a year and he has no knowledge at all of how to troubleshoot or anything like that. If I was building for myself I might give those AMD suggestions a shot.

I have a daily driver Ryzen 1700 on a low end Asus B450 and I had a lot of problems getting it stable, actually it never became totally as it still has unexpected reboots now and then but I guess I've just accepted it because I'm used to that happening with Windows updates anyway. I never had any extra CPUs or mobos but I have swapped the other parts out, RAM multiple times until it seemed to be fine but as I said it still reboots occasionally.

Recently I decided to try Ryzen 3rd gen when that screwed up Amazon deal happened and people said don't worry 3rd gen is all good now. I paired it with an x570 board which I did understand was a new chipset and had a lot of problems initially but I was coming in a few months late and I've updated the BIOS. I turned it into a gaming PC and it's been much better than the old 1700 but it still has quirks. Sometimes when I turn it on it doesn't boot, it goes into a sort of halfway state, or just weird states where the CPU fan doesn't light up and spin but everything else does, but in any case it doesn't want to actually POST until I force it to power cycle. About a week ago it was in a messed up state like that and I could not get it to come back after several tries, I moved it to the bench to prepare for some troubleshooting and then it suddenly worked there, so I moved it back and it's been OK since. In this case I have not tried swapping out all the parts, the only one that I can definitely say is fine is the video card as it came from my other gaming PC. It's a small case very annoying to work in, since it never messes up during an actual game I've just accepted it for now.

I realize there's many things that can be at play here, but just taken as averages, I have several different computers built either for myself or others over the last few years since Ryzen came out and those 2 Ryzen builds by far stand out as the troublemakers. In fact over my entire life the 1700 is probably one of the most annoying PCs I've ever built in terms of problems I couldn't explain/solve. In the past I've had a whole bunch of AMD and Intel PCs but Ryzen has really put me off.

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