The Best $600 Home Office Mini-ITX PC Build – May 2022

By Ari Altman | Published April 29, 2022 | Updated April 29, 2022

InWin ChopinBuild It Small, Build it Fast!

If you want to build the best ultra-compact small office or work-from-home PC possible for just $600, this is the guide for you! Based on the mini-ITX form factor, this system offers plenty of configuration options without the bulk. This ensures that your new PC Build can be tucked away anywhere or put on display as a conversation starter!

This Month’s Build

For May 2022, the $600 Home Office Mini-ITX PC Build features Intel’s budget-friendly Core i3-10100, a quad-core CPU that runs at up to 4.3GHz. Despite its low price, it also has built-in graphics, which means you don’t need a separate video card, saving you a lot of money! With that said, anyone doing serious multi-tasking, regular video conferencing, or content creation will want to consider an upgrade to the Core i5-10400, a six-core model that costs about $50 extra. We list it in the optional products section of this guide.

To ensure that you have a flawless computing experience, this system features 16GB of DDR4 RAM, rather than the 8GB used in most larger pre-built systems, which means you’ll never run out of memory. The build also features a 512GB PCIe-based solid-state drive for amazing performance and plenty of capacity. It uses the M.2 form factor, which slips right into the motherboard, eliminating cable clutter and simplifying the build experience. The system is housed in a stylish and compact InWin case, which includes a 200W power supply, which provides headroom for upgrades down the line. Despite its slim dimensions, it can fit dual 2TB hard drives, listed in the optional upgrades section at the end of this guide, making this a great low-cost media server pick!

Parting Thoughts

To set up a complete home office system, don’t miss our recommendations for a keyboard, mouse, monitor and other accessories at the end of this guide. Throughout our guides, we provide Amazon or Newegg links for our US readers, and our Amazon links will auto-convert for our readers in Canada, the UK, and parts of the EU. As always, please keep in mind that your use of the links we provide below helps support further development of these guides.

Required Components

  • CPU

    Intel Core i3-10100

    $102

    While AMD ruled the budget sector for a while, Intel now owns it with the Core i3-10100, which is simply unbeatable for the price, thanks to its 4 cores, 8 threads, and high clock speed. It doesn’t hurt that it has built-in graphics, unlike most of AMD’s offerings!

    The Guru’s Tip

    This CPU comes with a cooler, which will fit perfectly in this build! By the way, make sure you don't inadvertently buy the 10100F, which has no video capabilities and will not work in this system!

  • Motherboard

    MSI H510I PRO WiFi

    $130

    This low-cost mini-ITX board offers all the features you need for a compact build. That includes an M.2 SSD slot, dual RAM slots, six USB ports, and next-gen WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1. Note that this is a socket LGA 1200 motherboard, so if it’s out of stock, make sure that you don’t pick an alternative model with a different CPU socket (or a larger micro-ATX board)! Frankly, this board is practically one-of-a-kind, so you probably won’t find a substitute!

    The Guru’s Tip

    The HDMI port in combination with our CPU of choice will support up to 1080p resolutions, and the Displayport output will support 4K.

  • Memory

    Patriot 2x8GB Viper Elite II DDR4-2666 C16

    $60
    This cost-effective 16GB RAM kit will give you plenty of capacity to use your PC to its fullest. Plus, thanks to its C16 timings, it’s among the fastest DDR4-2666 kits out there!
    The Guru’s Tip

    Given that many apps today require at least 8GB, and the built-in graphics chip will reserve some of the RAM for its own use, we cannot recommend a cheaper 2x4GB setup for this system.

  • Solid-State Drive

    Silicon Power 512GB NVMe

    $46

    You simply can’t do better for the price than this value-packed SSD, which uses the speedy PCIe 3.0 interface and TLC NAND to vastly outperform all the SATA drives that sell for around the same amount! Note that to install this drive, you’ll affix it in an M.2 slot on your motherboard using a jeweler’s-type screwdriver.

    The Guru’s Tip

    512GB is more than enough capacity for any PC intended for basic home office tasks, and given that this drive costs about the same as most 250GB drives, it's a simple choice!

  • Case

    IN WIN Chopin Pro

    $120

    This is our all-time favorite low-cost mini-ITX case, and the Pro model has been upgraded from the original model’s 150W built-in power supply to an impressive 200W power supply, all the better for a high-end, compact system. It also has space for dual 2.5″ drives and a CPU cooler up to 47mm tall. Topping it all off is the aluminum exterior, which gives this case a seriously-premium look!

    The Guru’s Tip

    The 200W power supply included with this case will allow you to upgrade over time to higher-powered CPUs.

  • Operating System

    Windows 11 Home USB

    $139

    Windows 11 take everything people loved about Windows 10, and then takes it to 11! It adds significant under-the-hood changes to make it faster and more secure, and of course, the interface is sleek too!

    The Guru’s Tip

    Originally released only as an update for existing Win10 users, Windows 11 hit retail in April 2022 and is definitely the best OS to use in a modern system.

Optional Products

  • CPU

    Intel Core i5-10400

    $152
    The Core i5-10400 offers up six cores, 12 threads, a very high Turbo speed, and built-in graphics, which translates to excellent all-around performance! Thanks to a generous price cut by Intel, the 10400 offers by far the best value at its pricepoint.
    The Guru’s Tip

    While the 10100 we recommended earlier will definitely get the job done in basic tasks, if you have an extra $50 to spend, jumping up to the 10400 will turn your PC into a mini workstation, offering up to 50% higher performance!

  • Hard Drive

    WD Blue 2TB 2.5″

    $68
    Want to add a bunch of storage to your system at low cost, and without taking up much space? No problem – just add this high-capacity 2TB hard drive to your build! Not only is it a good value, but it’s also very quiet and energy efficient.
    The Guru’s Tip

    You can of course also use this system's 2.5" bays for SSDs, but we figure that most people adding extra storage to this system will need it for photos, music, and data, rather than for apps, and hard drives are still far cheaper than SSDs.

  • The Basic Wireless Keyboard/Mouse Combo

    Logitech MK270 Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo

    $20
    While you may have an old keyboard and mouse sitting in your desk, treat yourself to a new wireless setup from Logitech, the MK270!
    The Guru’s Tip

    This combo uses a single tiny USB receiver, ensuring you'll still have plenty of USB ports left over for other devices.

  • Webcam

    Logitech C920x Pro HD Webcam

    $70
    Need to use your PC for video conferencing? No problem! Just add this high-quality 1080p webcam from Logitech, which includes a built-in microphone. Just remember that if your monitor doesn’t have built-in speakers, you’ll also need stand-alone speakers for web conferencing to work. We’re amazed at the number of people who use headphones for video conferencing when it’s so much more professional to use gear attached to your PC, rather than your head!
    The Guru’s Tip

    You'll also need speakers for video conferencing, so if you don't have a monitor with built-in speakers (like the one above), make sure to add the speakers below.

  • The Basic PC Speakers

    Creative Pebble 2.0

    $19
    Because desktop PCs, unlike laptops, don’t have internal speakers, we recommend you pick up Creative’s Pebble kit. Whether it’s music, You Tube videos, TV, or movies, Pebble will sound great.
    The Guru’s Tip

    Despite the name, these are far larger than a pebble!

  • The 24-inch Small Office Monitor

    Sceptre E248W-19203R

    $132

    This monitor offers a 24″ 1920 x 1080 panel, a 75Hz refresh rate for smooth scrolling, a slim bezel for sleek looks, as well as dual HDMI inputs and a VGA input. It even has built-in speakers!

    The Guru’s Tip

    We recommend connecting this monitor to your PC with an HDMI cable, which will provide both display and sound.

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