Author Topic: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build  (Read 55910 times)

Ari Altman

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The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« on: October 17, 2015, 05:55:27 PM »
Have questions about TBG's Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build? Post them here!

LOST66

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2015, 01:39:12 PM »
good day
looks like I am the first to post here  ;D
I had a lot of questions, but I have jumped around so much, I cant remember them all.
let me start by telling you what I have:
dell inspiron 7720 laptop,
i7-3630qm 8gb,
GeForce gt650m.
it is 3 years old and has served me well. I play bf4 most of the time and on custom low or medium settings.
I then got ARK survival evolved, and realized that its not really a gaming pc ::)
on low settings (game looks like s...) and is still unplayable with a fps of 20 odd. laptop means no upgrade.
then I find this. (grate job by the way) so I think its time to upgrade.
 

although its not a laptop, I want to start with something good. I don't really want to upgrade for the next 3 years lol.
but when the time comes, it must still be possible. so here we go (finally)
lets start with the MSI Z170 (I) what is the I for and why not get the M or the A ....  and why the msi for that matter.
the gpu's are even worse with 101 different gtx980's. do you only get the i7-6700 (K).
if you could clear this up a little for me, I would really appreciate it.


with all those blond questions aside. would this system fit in the gaming/htpc case. I really would like to be as portable as possible (I travel more than what I am at home) ps. would love to build a custom laptop  ::)


that was a lot of typing (sorry) I think I should leave it at that for now.
thanx again for a gr8 site.

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2015, 03:44:26 PM »
Hey there LOST66, and welcome to the forum!

Glad you find this build interesting. It was published for the first time about two weeks ago, and indeed you're the first reader to ask about it.

Your laptop is a good one, particularly with regard to the CPU. But indeed, the video card us no longer sufficient for today's games, and it's hard to do much future proofing with gaming laptops.

The good news is you can build a compact ITX system that will be capable for years to come. The other good news is that we're in the process of putting together a step-by-step assembly guide where we'll be stuffing nearly all the parts from the ultimate ITX build into the Gaming/HTPC guide's case. The biggest issue is cpu cooling - you're just going to be far more limited in an ultra-small case.

The parts list will still include a GTX 980 Ti, a 6700K, and a Z170I board. You can't use M or A boards, which are for matx and atx cases.

If you have other specific questions, feel free to post them here.

LOST66

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2015, 05:32:21 AM »
that sounds good. I will be looking out for it.
in the mean time, with regards to the GTX 980 Ti, 6700K, and Z170I board,
what version/brands would be the ultimate if I wanted to push it to the max
(cooling and case aside for now).
and just on the side, newer is not always better.
if we were to use some older tech, could we not end up with a better gaming rig?

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2015, 10:29:08 AM »
that sounds good. I will be looking out for it.
in the mean time, with regards to the GTX 980 Ti, 6700K, and Z170I board,
what version/brands would be the ultimate if I wanted to push it to the max
(cooling and case aside for now).
and just on the side, newer is not always better.
if we were to use some older tech, could we not end up with a better gaming rig?

Well, there's no better CPU for an ITX build than the 6700K. But you can get nearly equivalent performance from a Core i7-4790K paired with a Z97I motherboard. These are generally much cheaper right now, due to low availability of the 6700K.

The choice of video card will depend on the case. When building an ITX system, it's important to think of it as a whole. You can't really pick out a few parts without taking into account the complete build.

LOST66

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2015, 03:13:15 AM »
thanx again for your reply I do agree that the 6700K paired with a Z97I motherboard would be the best option (but the choice of what board to use is proving to be a difficult choice) so I also started a thread on tomshardware http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-2850525/mini-itx-ultimate-gaming-rig.html
to see what the general feel is (quoted below)

and as for the choice of video card, I am considering working the other way round (building the rig I would like and fitting it into the appropriate mini case)

I do value you input/suggestions  and would probably end up building your awaited ultimate htpc, but I still would like to explore all the possibilities

Quote
hi all
 I am now in the process of planning my first mini itx build and I am already suffering from information overflow

 .GIGABYTE GA-Z170N-Gaming 5
 .ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming-ITX/ac
 .MSI Z170I GAMING PRO AC
 .ASUS Z170I PRO GAMING
 .MAXIMUS VIII IMPACT

 did I miss something.

 first things first, I need a motherboard. but which one?
 I will appreciate all the help you can give me and everyone else interested in following the build as is evolves.
 once we have come to an agreement on what board to get, then we could move on to the next part of this project

 thanx again (in advance) for your help


Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2015, 06:10:21 AM »
I just ordered the Asus Z170I Pro Gaming based on consideration of every model you listed.  It has the best combination of features for the price. It's nearly impossible to find in stock at the retail price, however, so my next choice would have been the MSI Z170I currently listed in the guide, or potentially the Asrock.

If you want the fastest GTX 980 TI, you need the EVGA Hybrid liquid cooled version, but these will not fit on slim cases. That's why you need to decide on a form factor first. Next best options would be MSI Gaming for a small ITX system, or a reference blower design. I'll be testing a few designs in the upcoming how-to article.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2015, 08:59:42 AM by Ari Altman »

Killface

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2015, 07:39:51 AM »
Hello all!

I've been browsing over all the mini-itx/htpc builds on this website for a couple of weeks now, trying to figure out what I would like to get and build. Thusfar I concluded that I might as well go for the HTPC gaming build, but a little voice in the back of my head keeps asking "why not just go for a mini-itx with a better GPU" (I guess the HTPC build does not support a GTX 980 ti). One of the main reasons why I'm considering a HTPC is that I will be carrying the case around with me on pretty much a weekly basis (I sleep where I work). So the question I would like to ask is how "portable" is this ultimate gaming minu itx build? I travel a lot by train and will carry my desktop in my (big ass) backpack. Some people told me that specifically when you have a water cooler for your CPU, it's not  a good idea to take it with you all the time. I'd like to know the opinion of the experts on this website I guess.. :)

Thanks in advance for your reply!

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2015, 08:59:08 AM »
Hello all!

I've been browsing over all the mini-itx/htpc builds on this website for a couple of weeks now, trying to figure out what I would like to get and build. Thusfar I concluded that I might as well go for the HTPC gaming build, but a little voice in the back of my head keeps asking "why not just go for a mini-itx with a better GPU" (I guess the HTPC build does not support a GTX 980 ti). One of the main reasons why I'm considering a HTPC is that I will be carrying the case around with me on pretty much a weekly basis (I sleep where I work). So the question I would like to ask is how "portable" is this ultimate gaming minu itx build? I travel a lot by train and will carry my desktop in my (big ass) backpack. Some people told me that specifically when you have a water cooler for your CPU, it's not  a good idea to take it with you all the time. I'd like to know the opinion of the experts on this website I guess.. :)

Thanks in advance for your reply!

Welcome to the TBG Forum, Killface!

So for the ultimate in portability, you probably want to stick with the Gaming/HTPC Build. Either case suggested in the guide can fit in a large backpack, but the smaller of the two is most definitely the Silverstone SG13, and that's the one you'll want to go with. You could literally fit it in a small grocery bag.

As for liquid coolers, they're actually safer to travel with than large air coolers, but none of the ITX builds on TBG use large air coolers due to space constraints. The Gaming/HTPC Build in fact uses the standard Intel heatsink, which is absolutely safe for travel (or Intel wouldn't sell it to every OEM manufacturer in the world).

As for whether a GTX 980 Ti can fit, in fact it can, although you don't necessarily need one for typical gaming, of course. If you decide to go with the SG13 case, you'd be much better getting a blower-type GTX 980 Ti, as an open-air model will not work well in it.

By the way, you've posted this in the Ultimate ITX thread, but for regular travel, that build really isn't ideal as it's too big.

DanteOne

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2016, 04:34:22 PM »
First of all: awesome website! Haven't build a pc since 10 years now and had no idea what to put into a itx (didnt even know small pcs were called itx...)

Based on your setup I've created my own.
What do you think? Will it fit?

Same case in white:
Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ITX weiß mit Sichtfenster, Mini-ITX (PH-ES215P_WT)

Same board & cpu:
ASUS Z170I Pro Gaming (90MB0MQ0-M0EAY0)
Intel Core i7-6700K, 4x 4.00GHz, tray (CM8066201919901)
Corsair Vengeance LPX schwarz DIMM Kit 16GB, DDR4-3000, CL15-17-17-35 (CMK16GX4M2B3000C15)

Changed CPU-Cooler & power supply for a cheaper one (not intending to overclock yet):
be quiet! Dark Rock 3 (BK018)
be quiet! Pure Power L8-CM 630W ATX 2.31 (L8-CM-630W/BN182)

Best GTX 980TI according to benchmarks and tests:
ASUS STRIX-GTX980TI-DC3OC-6GD5-GAMING, GeForce GTX 980 Ti, 6GB GDDR5, DVI, HDMI, 3x DisplayPort (90YV08J0-M0NA00/90YV08J0-M0NM00)

Harddisks:
Seagate Desktop HDD 3TB, SATA 6Gb/s (ST3000DM001)
Samsung SSD 850 Evo 500GB, SATA (MZ-75E500B)

Price 1829.44 EUR on 19.01.2016

Will this work in this setup?

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2016, 05:51:28 PM »
First of all: awesome website! Haven't build a pc since 10 years now and had no idea what to put into a itx (didnt even know small pcs were called itx...)

Based on your setup I've created my own.
What do you think? Will it fit?

Same case in white:
Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ITX weiß mit Sichtfenster, Mini-ITX (PH-ES215P_WT)

Same board & cpu:
ASUS Z170I Pro Gaming (90MB0MQ0-M0EAY0)
Intel Core i7-6700K, 4x 4.00GHz, tray (CM8066201919901)
Corsair Vengeance LPX schwarz DIMM Kit 16GB, DDR4-3000, CL15-17-17-35 (CMK16GX4M2B3000C15)

Changed CPU-Cooler & power supply for a cheaper one (not intending to overclock yet):
be quiet! Dark Rock 3 (BK018)
be quiet! Pure Power L8-CM 630W ATX 2.31 (L8-CM-630W/BN182)

Best GTX 980TI according to benchmarks and tests:
ASUS STRIX-GTX980TI-DC3OC-6GD5-GAMING, GeForce GTX 980 Ti, 6GB GDDR5, DVI, HDMI, 3x DisplayPort (90YV08J0-M0NA00/90YV08J0-M0NM00)

Harddisks:
Seagate Desktop HDD 3TB, SATA 6Gb/s (ST3000DM001)
Samsung SSD 850 Evo 500GB, SATA (MZ-75E500B)

Price 1829.44 EUR on 19.01.2016

Will this work in this setup?

This is a great build - that white Phanteks case looks amazing!

The beQuiet brand isn't available in the U.S., so I'm not too familiar with it, but I've read it's of high quality. The issue with big air coolers, however, is that they often won't fit on ITX motherboards, both due to the memory placement and the close proximity to the case side panels and video card. That's why liquid coolers are always a good choice - not so much for overclocking purposes, but because the cooling block is very compact.

I would make sure that the beQuiet cooler can be returned, as you will need to determine whether it will fit once the motherboard is in the case. Just pull it out of the box and estimate it without installing it so that it can be returned if necessary. Otherwise go for a liquid cooler - it's sure to fit.

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2016, 06:05:06 PM »
And one other thing I'll mention: the Noctua NH-U12S is a great cooler that has perhaps a better chance of fitting. It's not quite as thick.

DanteOne

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2016, 04:24:58 PM »
And one other thing I'll mention: the Noctua NH-U12S is a great cooler that has perhaps a better chance of fitting. It's not quite as thick.

Thank you for the tipp with the memory. Will try it with the be quiet Dark Rock 3. I haven't found any measures of the board. If it doesn't fit, I'm gonna get another one.

Got 3 different orders and all should come tomorrow and deliver my stuff. Tracking says they are all on time. Fingers crossed.

My final setup:
Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ITX white with side-window Mini-ITX
ASUS Z170I Pro Gaming
Intel Core i7-6700K, 4x 4.00GHz, tray
HyperX 16GB kit (2x8GB) 2666MHz 1.2V, 288-pin DDR4 Non-ECC CL15 DIMM
be quiet! Dark Rock 3
be quiet! Pure Power L8-CM 630W ATX 2.31
ASUS STRIX-GTX980TI-DC3OC-6GD5-GAMING, GeForce GTX 980 Ti, 6GB GDDR5, DVI, HDMI, 3x DisplayPort
Samsung SSD 850 Evo 500GB, SATA
Western Digital 3TB, 5400 rpm, 2ms, 64MB Cache, SATA III

Hopefully I can start building tomorrow.

Steve N. Mavronis

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #13 on: February 01, 2016, 02:42:59 PM »
Here's my current build plan for a $2K high end mini-ITX gaming system. The items in gray are alternate options I'm considering but not calculated in the total cost. The items in blue are temporary reused gear from my current 8.5 year old PC that will get replaced after the build is complete and tweeked.



[EDIT] The cost is wrong. I added an extra row at the top for case configuration options and forgot to include that row price for the total which would be $85 more. That and updated parts selection (Raptor M45 mouse) and 2/2/2016 pricing brings the total to $2,122.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2016, 11:28:43 AM by Steve N. Mavronis »
Evolv ITX Build w/3DMark 11/Fire Strike Scores:
PCPartPicker - https://pcpartpicker.com/b/96JV3C
EVGA Mod Rigs - www.modsrigs.com/detail.aspx?buildid=35547

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultimate Gaming Mini-ITX PC Build
« Reply #14 on: February 01, 2016, 03:29:23 PM »
Looks good but I'd suggest you have a look at TBG's recent gaming peripherals shootout for some other ideas regarding mice and keyboards. You've picked some pretty old models.