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FT03 mini build, feedback please!

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Hey,

I am moving back home after being away traveling for two years and one of my first plan will be to build a computer. Note that this will be the second computer I will build.
Here's a breakdown of what I want out of this computer and the list of parts I've carefully chosen. Note that nothing has been ordered yet and will be ordered next month.
Please let me know if you find something wrong with my build or something I've neglected/could do better. I would consider my computer knowledge average.

My goals;

1. SFF ; I want something somewhat portable that will have a sleek design, hence the chassis choice.
I plan to take this computer on international flights in the future, as carry-on luggage. Will carry it to friends house as well once in a while.

2. Future proof for gaming at high level in the next 2-3 years.

3. Budget ; 1200 - 1500 canadian.

4. Will be used as a DAW in my home studio. Will need to handle multiple vst/ plugins running at the same time.

I will not be overclocking.

Now here's the specs;

Case; FT03 mini
Psu; Silverstone sfx 450 gold
CPU; Xeon e3 1230-v2
Motherboard; ASUS P8Z77-I DELUXE
GPU; GTX 680 or 670 ftw edition (used, blower type cooler)
CPU cooler; Corsair h60
SSD; 128 gb (I already have another ssd + 1 hdd)
RAM; 16 gb (2x8) low profile
External dvd drive (usb)
I have a windows 7 os installed on my ssd.


This build seems pretty standard. I just need to make sure my ram will be compatible with the motherboard. Let me know what you think!
post #2 of 3
Hiya smile.gif

Watch out with the EVGA FTW edition cards, some of them are taller than the standard 111mm, that would interfere with the drive bays. The best GPU for this case, that requires no modding, is the EVGA GTX680 Superclocked. It's closed-shroud and you can probably get a used one for a good price.

Definitely get the new PP05-E cable set, much easier than the stock cables.
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Lori Lemaris 023
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post #3 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedRabbit56 View Post

My goals;

1. SFF ; I want something somewhat portable that will have a sleek design, hence the chassis choice.
I plan to take this computer on international flights in the future, as carry-on luggage. Will carry it to friends house as well once in a while.

2. Future proof for gaming at high level in the next 2-3 years.

3. Budget ; 1200 - 1500 canadian.

4. Will be used as a DAW in my home studio. Will need to handle multiple vst/ plugins running at the same time.

I will not be overclocking.

Now here's the specs;

Case; FT03 mini
Psu; Silverstone sfx 450 gold
CPU; Xeon e3 1230-v2
Motherboard; ASUS P8Z77-I DELUXE
GPU; GTX 680 or 670 ftw edition (used, blower type cooler)
CPU cooler; Corsair h60
SSD; 128 gb (I already have another ssd + 1 hdd)
RAM; 16 gb (2x8) low profile
External dvd drive (usb)
I have a windows 7 os installed on my ssd.

Look into the Silverstone SG06 case. The internal chassis is the same as the FT03 Mini with these changes:
1) FT03 is standing on what would be the front of the SG06.
2) The fan goes from 120mm to 140mm, and is mounted outside the internal chassis instead of inside.
3) The external case is bigger to hold the fan at the bottom, and route the cables at the top.
Being essentially the "same" case, the SG06 still looks good (compared to SG05) and it is much smaller. Something to think about, for portability sake. If you end up getting the SG06, look for the SG06-LITE version as that's the one sans PSU.

Not overclocking = no need for a Z chipset motherboard. Choose it over the H series if the particular Z board you want has a feature which the H board does not. Otherwise, the performance and features are exactly the same on a chipset level.

Why socket 1155? Go socket 1150. You get higher IPC for same cost and electricity use/heat output. If you want a cheap 8 thread Xeon, you can get the socket 1150 Haswell version Xeon E3-1230 v3 for $20 more than the Ivy Bridge version. IMO it is worth it just for the H87/Z87 chipset. Heck, I would even suggest the ASRock Z87E-ITX board because of the low cost (around $125) and all the features. It has SATA 6Gbps on all ports, unlike Z77. It has mSATA ($70 can get a 120GB mSATA SSD, $122 for 240GB on hot deals) as well as eSATA. It even has 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0.

No overclocking also means no need for a liquid cooler. Just use the stock cooler that comes with the CPU. As long as you install it properly, it will be completely sufficient for stock CPU speeds. It will also save you money, plus weigh less (for the traveling). Also, as long as you enable a fan profile in BIOS, it will stay quiet under low loads.

For the RAM, Crucial has their 1.35v super low profile Ballistix and Ballistix Sport which is just as tall as the RAM clips. Good stuff!

Why not a GTX 700 series graphics card? A GTX 760 is similar in performance to a GTX 670 (maybe a hair less?) and a GTX 770 is a rebadged and discounted GTX 680. This post is for a similar build (SG05 case) and the guy was able to fit an MSI GTX 770 (10.24" long) in it without modding the case.

I would actually just go with the 80 Plus Bronze Silverstone ST45SF PSU and save the $40. There is potentially only one strand of unused cabling, which can be taken care of with a bit of cable tie and 30 seconds time.
Main home rig
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-3570K ASRock Z77E-ITX GeForce GTX 670 8GB Samsung DDR3 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Intel 330 240GB SSD, Crucial M4 256GB mSATA SSD... Samsung DVDRW CoolIt Eco Windows 7 Home Premium x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung 305T Plus, Dell 2005FPW Cooler Master QuickFire Pro mechanical keyboard Rosewill Capstone 450W Lian Li PC-Q11B 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX518 Allsop Metal Onkyo TX-SR505 receiver, Polk bookshelf speaker... 
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Main home rig
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-3570K ASRock Z77E-ITX GeForce GTX 670 8GB Samsung DDR3 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Intel 330 240GB SSD, Crucial M4 256GB mSATA SSD... Samsung DVDRW CoolIt Eco Windows 7 Home Premium x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Samsung 305T Plus, Dell 2005FPW Cooler Master QuickFire Pro mechanical keyboard Rosewill Capstone 450W Lian Li PC-Q11B 
MouseMouse PadAudio
Logitech MX518 Allsop Metal Onkyo TX-SR505 receiver, Polk bookshelf speaker... 
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