mATX Build Case/Power/Storage
With the motherboard, memory, cooling and graphics card sorted we can now work out the case. So far the Micro ATX build is shaping up to be very realistic of what Intel Pentium G3258 owners might go for.
BitFenix Phenom Micro-ATX
Not wanting to spoil this gaming system with a subpar chassis, we went with the affordable BitFenix Phenom Micro-ATX. Priced at just $100, this sleek mATX enclosure offers an unexpected amount of features.
The Phenom Micro-ATX features a cube design that looks like no other. The subtle curves coated in premium BitFenix SofTouch Surface Treatment offer an elegant matte finish. Designed specifically for Micro-ATX motherboards, the Phenom Micro-ATX delivers superb flexibility with support for dual-slot full 320mm length graphics cards, 160mm tall CPU coolers, and even slim 240mm water cooling radiators.
Users can install up to four hard disks or six SSDs, and a pair of side mounted USB 3.0 ports provide convenient access for mobile storage devices. Along with a fully powder-coated interior, rolled cable pass-throughs and unique heat shield, the Phenom Micro-ATX looks as good inside as it does out.
The box measure 250mm wide, 330mm tall and 374mm long and tips the scales at 8.44kg. It comes with two 120mm fans, one mounted in the bottom and the other in the rear. There is also room for two optional top mounted fans.
Silverstone Strider Essential ST60F-ESB 600W
The Corsair CS Series Modular CS650M sells for $95, which is pretty reasonable for an 80 Plus Gold certified unit, but if it's too pricey the $65 Silverstone Strider Essential ST60F-ESB 600W is a safe bet. Similar options at this price includes the Corsair CX series CX600 600W for $65 or the SeaSonic S12II 620w for $65 -- any of the three will serve you well.
The Silverstone Strider Essential ST60F-ESB's highlights, other than its price, include 80 Plus Bronze certification, multiple protection circuitry, silent running 120mm fan at 18dBA, 12v single rail, PCIe 8-pin and 6-pin connectors, as well as a three-year warranty.
The power supply is just 140mm long, which is about as compact as ATX power supplies come, though it does weigh 1.75kg which is a sign of a quality PSU.
Although this is only a 600 watt power supply, it is ideal for a microATX case as it provides six SATA power plugs, three 4-pin peripheral plugs, four PCIe 6-pin plugs and a 4-pin floppy plug.
Kingston Fury SSD 240GB
Since we saved on the power supply and case compared to the standard ATX system, we upgraded the SSD to a 240/256GB model. We are yet to look at the Kingston Fury SSD so we opted for the 240GB model which costs just $130. In comparison, the Crucial MX100 256GB goes for $115 and the Corsair Force LX Series 256GB runs $135.
The Kingston Fury SSD 240GB comes equipped with the now tried and true LSI SandForce SF-2281 controller coupled with IMFT L85 memory.
As this is a budget SSD series, the Fury drives come in just 120GB and 240GB capacities. Kingston claims 500MB/s read and write speeds for both drives and the company says that the 120GB model can sustain 354TB of writes before failing while the 240GB model can handle 641TB. That said, keep in mind Kingston only offers a three-year warranty, though that is the same coverage period offered by Crucial for its MX100 series.
WD Black 4TB
Again, we have gone with a much bigger secondary storage device with the WB Black 4TB. As we explained previously, this isn't an essential item and if you only plan to have a few games installed at any given time it is probably an unnecessary luxury. Furthermore, if you do require a hard drive it might only need to be 1 or 2TB, not a 4TB monster.
When it comes to hard drives, the WD Black series is hard to beat though there are of course cheaper options and WD's own 4TB Green sells for just $160, making it a popular choice for budget builds, but Green drives are slower and less reliable than the Black drives in our opinion. At $240, the 4TB Black drive is by far the most expensive component in this build.
The 3.5" desktop Black series is available in 500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 3TB and 4TB models. All feature the 64MB cache and 7200 RPM spindle speed and are backed by a five-year warranty.