I wasn’t sure on what to call this computer since I rushed build and made sure all available software were installed before the pickup. After much thinking, I called it Factotum.
This was built for my Uncle G. and he was tired of his laptop. The cost of this computer was $857.13. It was discussed and his budget was tight. Some parts were purchased suddenly, the RAM and WiFi, but otherwise everything else was bought in late October.
The purpose is for: Email, Microsoft Office, edit photos, play his music, print stamps, business cards, etc. and most importantly Bluetooth for his devices. The majority reason to have this computer is his business and of course he was dying to have a desktop to come home to.
My uncle asked for specific requests. The budget had to be under $1,000; However, the lessen the money is spent without hindering performance the better. I knew the OS and MS Office was needed too so I warned him it will be over his budget after the build options were finalize, but he was OK about that. I only had to make sure the build itself remain in budget.
Photos #1-3 is a brief final result. Photos #4-190 is the building process.
|CPU-Z||CPU Single Thread|
|Intel® Core™ i5-6500 Processor @ 3.5GHz~||1,771|
|Crystal Disk Mark 5||Read [MB/s]||Write [MB/s]|
|All||5, 1GiB||C: 12% (32/256GiB)|
|3DMark Benchmark||Score||Graphics Test 1||Graphics Test 2||Psychics Test||Combined Test||Details|
|Firestrike 1.1||9,564||58.21 FPS||49.67 FPS||22.2 FPS||20.9 FPS||Firestrike Result|
|Firestrike Extreme 1.1||5,233||29.51 FPS||21.92 FPS||21.98 FPS||11.7 FPS||Firestrike Extreme Result|
|Sky Diver 1.0||22,085||178.97 FPS||185.49 FPS||✕||71.84 FPS||Sky Diver Result|
|Time Spy 1.0||3,706||24.68 FPS||21.61 FPS||✕||✕||Time Spy Result|
|Valley Benchmark||FPS||Score||Min. FPS||Max FPS||Mode||Preset|
|DirectX 11||63.5||2,657||28.3||123.5||2560x1440 2xAA fullscreen||Custom|
|Heaven Benchmark||FPS||Score||Min. FPS||Max FPS||Mode||Preset||Quality||Tessellation|
|DirectX 11||60.2||1,517||24.5||128.7||2560x1440 2xAA fullscreen||Custom||High||Disabled|
|Resident Evil 6 Benchmark||Score||Min. FPS||Max FPS||Rank||Resolution||Graphics|
My two cents:
Intel Core i5-6500 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor, Turbo Boost @ 3.5GHz~
So I have officially poke an i5 Skylake processor. I was quite impressed with the balance and power with the tasks. Overclocking wasn’t a desire. I was originally going to get a good deal with this but I lost the $195 from Amazon since I needed a full confirmation with my Uncle on the build’s part list.
If you’re wondering why I didn’t go for the i5-6600, it was $20 dollars more at the time and I wanted to keep my word to stay within budget, but not reduce the performance either. I know this CPU will perform well for what he does with speedy results. I’ll remind that he will always have the option to upgrade to an i7-6700 or an i7-7700 with a BIOS update first, but I don’t think this will occur anytime soon.
One last thing to quickly mention, I didn’t have a ton of time to benchmark so I truly apologize for my lack of results. I did notice one consistent result about the CPU. In my spare time, I never saw the processor hit beyond 3.57GHz~ when testing for a couple of days. I wish I had wrote a sticky note to myself, to test run with Prime95, but I’ll never know until I visit my Uncle again. And yes, Turbo Boost is ON.
CPU Cooler + Thermal Compound
CRYORIG M9i 48.4 CFM CPU Cooler & ARCTIC MX-4 4g Thermal Paste
The CPU cooler is absolutely amazing. I can say I had a fun time installing and seeing its own beauty. It’s also great paired with the Arctic MX-4, far better than an intel stockfan. That is the key word, it works great with non-overclocking and in theory some minor overclocks. Now I truly wish I’d written down the overload results but I do recall when benchmarking was 49°C and with the everyday tasks it would be around 24~29°C.
Cryorig has a video on their webpage, at the bottom of the page: how to install the M9i.
In my experience, the long screws were not as secure as the video portrays so make sure they stay align and tight enough but not too tight to a point you will hurt the motherboard. I had to redo the long screws while I was half-way done with the build. My screws weren’t align completely when supporting the backplate, the part that’s behind the MOBO. It wasn't hard to fix. I think it’s a great cooler and I would highly recommend it.
Gigabyte GA-B150M-DS3H Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
This was my first time to install a MicroATX into a Mid Tower case. The layout was perfect though, so I had no issues connecting the wires. This has plenty of features for my Uncle’s needs and enough connectors for two optical bays and most importantly is storage. He did request to have a MOBO with 4 DIMM slots to have 32GB of RAM but I told him he wouldn’t need that amount for what he currently does. He still wanted the option for later when needed so that's OK. He must have at least 6 between 8 USB ports and this MOBO was within the budget.
I had no issues with this MOBO and it was pretty easy to work on. I like the layout a lot since all the connectors are conveniently away from the center of the board. It’s easy to manage wires this way. The PCIex16 latch was new for me, I never had such an easier time to install and uninstall a graphics card until Skylake.
NOTE: You should install the M.2. SSD first if you plan to use a CPU cooler that'll obstruct the M.2. and this motherboard only has 1 System Fan connector. You'll most likely need a 3-pin or 4-pin fan splitter or purchase a fan hub or fan controller. Lastly, there is also a orange LED strip within the MOBO but thankfully it's a faint glow.
Kingston HyperX Fury Black 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memory
- I was able to snatch a great deal with Amazon. I was so glad to make that decision because I wasn’t going to wait too long. I believe this was worth the pounce because these run great and their latency is a little lower than the usual 15~16 CAS. The 16GB was a request from my Uncle for the sake of multi-tasking. I don’t know what software he uses for editing photos but he does love running his music in the background and many other programs, so I have heard. No issues whatsoever.
SSD & HDD
Crucial MX300 275GB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive & Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
The Crucial MX300 275GB was my first time to install an M.2. into the motherboard. It was straightforward and no issues at all, thanks to the MOBO. Obviously, the installation was on #80 but they also have 60 & 42 for different M.2. sizes. This SSD boots Windows 10 and loads 5 between 8 seconds.
He wanted an SSD for certain, and this has plenty of GB for his main programs he uses often. The bonus is less wires to manage. When I benched this SSD it was 48°C but when doing the everyday tasks it's around 32~37°C.
The hard drives were bought from Amazon, extremely rare for me to buy for such a price. The Seagate hard drives works good too. I actually gave my Uncle one more terabyte for free which I knew he didn’t need it yet. I miss-communicate about the additional hard drives so now he just has one 3.5" bay left to install a hard drive when he needs to.
EVGA GeForce GTX 1060 3GB 3GB GAMING Video Card
To answer this right away, he is NOT a gamer. Maybe it’s an overkill but I rather balance the CPU and GPU versus under power the graphics card with an i5. I wanted to make sure the graphics card was a small form, light weight, and could support resolutions beyond 1080p. He also wanted to be able to use more than one monitor. Technically he could go up to 4 monitors if he so desired.
About the major benchmarking, the GPU was 75°C but if doing the everyday tasks than it’s around 29~37°C. Yes, I adjusted the fan’s RPM per increase of 8~10°C. In theory, I don’t think it will remain in the 70°C~ for most games that aren't too demanding with the GPU. I can say for certain it outperformed my GTX 970 in 1440p by stock settings when comparing scores with each benchmark. It will cool down about 10 minutes when done benchmarking.
NZXT Source 210 Elite (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case
This was a personal request to avoid small form cases. He wanted a simple, black Mid-Tower with no LEDs and window. Must have at least 2 USB ports at the front, and allows plenty of storage and could allow him to add or remove storage with ease. Plus he wanted to tuck his computer under his desk.
The side panels are heavy. Installing everything and the cable management was actually easy to work in this case. Though it’s too bad I couldn’t hide all the wires with a MircoATX MOBO. As long the wires isn’t obstructive and the layout isn’t confusing than that’s all that matters in the long run. I made sure my Uncle took on what he needed such as SATA cables, zip ties, and screws to install another hard drive since he allowed me to keep the additional parts/items/stickers that he wouldn't keep.
He loved it a lot more in person which is always assuring to know. I’m glad he loved the appearance and how it’s format to his liking. It’s his very own build and what’s better is he knows what’s in it.
Fractal Design Edison M 450W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply
I love this PSU’s size and format. If you think this seems pretty tight with the wattage, it’s not. The most wattage I saw being pulled out was 112w and this was benchmarking. Otherwise it was below 100w when doing the everyday tasks. Too bad I didn’t pay too much attention about wattage estimates with specific tasks but I know for certain it was around 50w~90w.
I had no troubles routing the cables in the case and did the best I could to make it appear nice looking. I had purchased this PSU a while ago so it was waiting on my shelf, plastic wrapped, until one day I would need it. I purchased this great deal from Newegg but I certainly cannot recall when I did since it’s been while. I would recommend this PSU for budget gamers if it’s a good price. Though I'm not sure if they're in stock these days?
LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer & LG UH12NS30 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer
- My uncle requested to have one Blu-ray Writer and one Blu-Ray Reader only optical drive. He continues to burn Blu-ray discs and watches movies on his computer but he wanted to do this at the same time. He has the software for this. The Blu-ray writer is at the top and the reader is in the center of the bays. Again, I only formatted this way to be reachable when the computer is under his desk.
Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV 4.2 PCI-Express x1 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi Adapter
- Wow! I loved installing this WiFi adapter and this was a must have for my Uncle. I don’t think he’ll have much issues with the reception. We got the Bluetooth to work too before he took it back to his place. Yes, it does required a 2.0 USB connector from the MOBO but thankfully it was plentiful. All you need for this WiFi is a screwdriver and your hands for installation. I would certainly recommend this WiFi but do double check that you're buying the desktop version. There are two versions of this model.
(2x) NZXT RF-FN122-RB 45.0 CFM 120mm Fan
- These case fans are really good. These are installed as intakes, placed in front of the case since the NZXT Source 210 Elite has two fans pre-installed (120mm at the back + 140mm at the top-back). I know the goal was to keep it silent and to provide enough airflow. I have the RPM set around 800~1,000rpm with the App Center fan’s calibration. I used a 2-way, 3-pin fan splitter to allow these two fans change in speed when the CPU’s temps rise.
I truly enjoyed building this computer for my Uncle G. I thought I was only to be building two computers for relatives this year but I was wrong! He even paid me which I’m truly grateful. Truthfully it’s not about the money with this build, it’s the honor and privilege to build him a brand new computer that should last him for quite some time. OK, you caught me, I do love building computers but most especially for my family when it’s possible.
Please feel free to leave any comments, questions, and constructive criticism. I’ll correct any typos or if I forgot to mention something.