Question Z490 or B550? New Mini ITX build planned.

g-unit1111

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I'm looking to undertake a new project building an HTPC around my RTX 2070 and I've chosen to do a build in the Fractal Node 202. Essentially this is going to be a portable gaming / all purpose rig that will be significantly more powerful than my laptop but will also replace an aging desktop. I'm looking for a suitable motherboard for this build and I'm torn between Z490 and B550 on this build. I'm kind of interested in going to Z490 but I can't seem to find any favorable reviews on Z490or H460 motherboards. Are they even recommended right now or should I stick with B550? Overclocking isn't super important on this rig so I can be a bit lax about which CPU I choose for it and I can go for a less expensive motherboard. Brand isn't really important either - I can use MSI, Gigabyte, or Asus.
 
I own 3 AM4-based rigs so I have no problem using AMD. What I am torn about is that reviews for the motherboards that I've seen are not very favorable in the mITX segment.
How about the B550M Pro4 - https://pcpartpicker.com/product/NT7p99/asrock-b550m-pro4-micro-atx-am4-motherboard-b550m-pro4

It's a 100 dollars B550M Micro Atx board that is better than the MSI B550M PRO-VDH WIFI.

Can you go to 150-160? - https://pcpartpicker.com/products/compare/9PDkcf,nFhmP6,Kb6qqs/
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
The Asrock board looks decent but I definitely want something better. Those boards are micro ATX and I'm pretty set on doing a mini ITX build. My budget for the parts is about $950 but I can be flexible. I want something that's more portable than what I have now. I have all of the other parts picked out except for CPU and motherboard. I could use either AMD or Intel. I'm pretty set on most of the parts I am getting. This is what the rest of the build is going to look like:

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-10600K 4.1 GHz 6-Core Processor ($229.84 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9i chromax.black 33.84 CFM CPU Cooler
Motherboard: Asus ROG STRIX Z490-I GAMING Mini ITX LGA1200 Motherboard ($259.89 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Trident Z RGB 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CL16 Memory ($103.95 @ Amazon)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($103.99 @ Adorama)
Case: Fractal Design Node 202 HTPC Case ($87.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair SF 600 W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully Modular SFX Power Supply ($159.99 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($108.78 @ Other World Computing)
Total: $1054.42
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2021-03-01 22:24 EST-0500


Or:

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 3.6 GHz 6-Core Processor ($199.99 @ B&H)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9a-AM4 chromax.black 33.8 CFM CPU Cooler ($49.90 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte B550I AORUS PRO AX Mini ITX AM4 Motherboard ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Trident Z RGB 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CL16 Memory ($103.95 @ Amazon)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($103.99 @ Adorama)
Case: Fractal Design Node 202 HTPC Case ($87.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair SF 600 W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully Modular SFX Power Supply ($159.99 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($108.78 @ Other World Computing)
Total: $1014.57
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2021-03-01 22:27 EST-0500
 

dempy19

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its a great time to look into building a new PC. Although, many would argue to wait a few weeks so that the Z590 and 11th gen intel are released into the wild.
In my opinion, Asus and Gigabyte are the best board makers currently. MSI coming in just behind them and ASRock maybe just steer clear of as for now as thye've had multiple bad boards on both ends with AMD and Intel.

Ultimately, both AMD and Intel provide great options and its up to whatever can deliver the best performance for your dollar in the end.
One thing i will mention is be weary of the Intel I225-V lan port (2.5Gbit) as they have a known issue with stability. I'm currently still trying to get mine to work properly after many days of trying to fix it.
Also, I'd strongly suggest going with the 5000 series from AMD instead of the 3000 series since you're already thinking of a B550 mobo.
You've got a platinum rated PSU, save your money and go for a gold rated one and put the extra cash into the CPU. 5600x knocks the 10600K's socks off in gaming and multi-threaded performance, at least at 1080p gaming. At higher resolutions, you're GPU bound so neither CPU will hurt you.

Anyways, here's the updated parts list I believe would be right for AMD PCPartPicker List
and Intel Intel PCPartPicker

I've removed the Windows 10 you've added to your list as i'd strongly urge you to check out RobeyTech's stream from Feb 26th, there's an ad spot hes got right at the begining which will point you in the right direction. Trust me, you'll see.
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
I've removed the Windows 10 you've added to your list as i'd strongly urge you to check out RobeyTech's stream from Feb 26th, there's an ad spot hes got right at the begining which will point you in the right direction. Trust me, you'll see.
Yeah no, I don't do that sort of thing. I'll buy the legitimate version of Windows thanks. Buying the Windows 10 DVD isn't going to break my bank account or anything.

You've got a platinum rated PSU, save your money and go for a gold rated one and put the extra cash into the CPU. 5600x knocks the 10600K's socks off in gaming and multi-threaded performance, at least at 1080p gaming. At higher resolutions, you're GPU bound so neither CPU will hurt you.
Actually the 5600X is my first choice. And I do have access to a Micro Center.
 
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Some thoughts:

Do you need a dvd drive?
Usually, a HTPC will want one. I assume not.

A 56mm cooler is going to be barely adequate for any high powered cpu you put in there.
How strong does your cpu need to be?
Here, for example is the i3-10100 review as a gamer.
It competes quite well in comparison to the 3600:
https://www.techpowerup.com/review/intel-core-i3-10100/15.html
At over 1080P, the cpu becomes even less important.

Love those ITX builds, and the node 202 seems interesting.
For portability, it weighs 7.72 Lbs.
Might you consider the lian li TU-150 @7.8 lbs?
it has a carrying handle, and is the same height and depth, but somewhat wider:
https://www.newegg.com/p/2AM-000Z-00050?&quicklink=true
As a plus, it can handle a good air cooler up to 165mm.
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
Some thoughts:

Do you need a dvd drive?
Usually, a HTPC will want one. I assume not.
Not really, nearly all my content comes from streaming services and iTunes anymore. I think the last Blu-Ray I bought was Endgame and that was 2 years ago. I have external drives for when I absolutely need it.

A 56mm cooler is going to be barely adequate for any high powered cpu you put in there.
How strong does your cpu need to be?
Here, for example is the i3-10100 review as a gamer.
It competes quite well in comparison to the 3600:
https://www.techpowerup.com/review/intel-core-i3-10100/15.html
At over 1080P, the cpu becomes even less important.
I'd like a decently powered CPU. Ryzen 5 / i5 something in that region. I don't think I want anything less. I'm aware of the cooler limitations as with the other HTPC that I built. I would be willing to consider a non-overclocked rig like on the i5-10400F though.

Love those ITX builds, and the node 202 seems interesting.
For portability, it weighs 7.72 Lbs.
Might you consider the lian li TU-150 @7.8 lbs?
it has a carrying handle, and is the same height and depth, but somewhat wider:
https://www.newegg.com/p/2AM-000Z-00050?&quicklink=true
As a plus, it can handle a good air cooler up to 165mm.
I do like that case but I am definitely going for something smaller.
 

dempy19

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Yeah no, I don't do that sort of thing. I'll buy the legitimate version of Windows thanks. Buying the Windows 10 DVD isn't going to break my bank account or anything.
I wasn't suggesting purchasing pirated versions of Windows for all those downvoting my post. Simply buying the OEM version instead of full retail. It costs $19 USD and you just create a Windows boot usb and use the key you purchase.
 

logainofhades

Titan
Moderator
PSU price is just crazy. (I don't use MIR data, or the price really jumped, since you posted.) Also with you being close to MC, iirc, you may be able to get a 5600x, at retail. How I would do the AMD version, with the 3600. I use the PSU below. It is seasonic built. With only a 2070, you probably will see little difference, gaming wise, with a 3600 vs a 10th gen Intel.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 3.6 GHz 6-Core Processor ($194.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9a-AM4 chromax.black 33.8 CFM CPU Cooler ($49.90 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte B550I AORUS PRO AX Mini ITX AM4 Motherboard ($199.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3600 CL16 Memory ($86.99 @ B&H)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($103.99 @ Adorama)
Case: Fractal Design Node 202 HTPC Case ($87.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Fractal Design Ion SFX-L 650 W 80+ Gold Certified Fully Modular SFX Power Supply ($121.99 @ B&H)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($108.78 @ Other World Computing)
Total: $954.61
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2021-03-08 09:53 EST-0500



Intel build would be cheaper, at this time, especially with B560 being availaible.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-10400F 2.9 GHz 6-Core Processor ($149.00 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9i chromax.black 33.84 CFM CPU Cooler
Memory: Crucial Ballistix 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CL16 Memory ($79.98 @ Amazon)
Storage: Intel 665p 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($103.99 @ Adorama)
Case: Fractal Design Node 202 HTPC Case ($87.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Fractal Design Ion SFX-L 650 W 80+ Gold Certified Fully Modular SFX Power Supply ($121.99 @ B&H)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($108.78 @ Other World Computing)
Custom: ASRock B560M-ITX/AC ($94.99)
Total: $746.71
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2021-03-08 10:03 EST-0500
 
Reactions: g-unit1111

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
I wasn't suggesting purchasing pirated versions of Windows for all those downvoting my post. Simply buying the OEM version instead of full retail. It costs $19 USD and you just create a Windows boot usb and use the key you purchase.
But most (maybe all) of those keys are acquired through illegitimate means. That's why they can sell them for so cheap, is that the people who are selling them don't own them, and nearly all of the businesses selling these keys are very shady. The keys can also be deactivated at any time for any reason. Even though paying $99 for a Windows DVD does suck, it's better than the alternative. Think of this like that line from the Hangover - "It's not illegal, it's frowned upon".

PSU price is just crazy. (I don't use MIR data, or the price really jumped, since you posted.) Also with you being close to MC, iirc, you may be able to get a 5600x, at retail. How I would do the AMD version, with the 3600. I use the PSU below. It is seasonic built. With only a 2070, you probably will see little difference, gaming wise, with a 3600 vs a 10th gen Intel.
Yeah the one bad thing about HTPC builds is that finding a solid PSU without paying for it is ridiculous. I'll definitely take a look at that Fractal PSU for sure. I just went to Micro Center the other day, they have plenty of 5600Xs and 5800Xs in stock. The only ones they didn't have were the higher end 5900X and 5950X. But I don't need a CPU that powerful for this machine.
 
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The intel build from loganofhades looks good to me.
I came across this article which indicates that the i5-11400 may even be better:
https://www.techradar.com/news/the-intel-core-i5-11400-may-beat-the-10th-gen-flagship

rocket lake launch date is near, I would at least look to see what is offered.

Love the noctua coolers, but I think I would at least first try the stock intel cooler.
I built a pc for my son using the i3-10100 which is the same 65w tdp.
A simple CPU-Z stress test gave no heat issues, and the cooler was reasonably quiet.
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
The intel build from loganofhades looks good to me.
I came across this article which indicates that the i5-11400 may even be better:
https://www.techradar.com/news/the-intel-core-i5-11400-may-beat-the-10th-gen-flagship

rocket lake launch date is near, I would at least look to see what is offered.

Love the noctua coolers, but I think I would at least first try the stock intel cooler.
I built a pc for my son using the i3-10100 which is the same 65w tdp.
A simple CPU-Z stress test gave no heat issues, and the cooler was reasonably quiet.
Yeah I'm in no hurry to build this thing since I want to upgrade my monitor first. But I am definitely going to wait and see what 11th generation Intel is capable of, and if 5th generation AMD comes down in price.
 
I also was very disappointed with the early review if 11th gen 11700K.
I was looking forward to the supposed 19% IPC upgrade.
I guess another review will clarify how much is actual, and where it applies.

I fully endorse buying the monitor first.
You will get a much better idea of what you will need to run it well.

And, unless your 2070 needs more than 8 pin power, 500w should do it.
I found a seasonic sfx 500w unit for $99
https://www.newegg.com/seasonic-focus-sgx-ssr-500sgx-500w/p/N82E16817151230
Not bad with a 10 year warranty.
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
I also was very disappointed with the early review if 11th gen 11700K.
I was looking forward to the supposed 19% IPC upgrade.
I guess another review will clarify how much is actual, and where it applies.
Yeah I saw the early reviews of the 11600K and the slow RAM was the deal breaker. I mean for a 2021 platform it should have faster RAM than a 2016 platform. And DDR5 isn't going to be out until late this year / early next year. Looks like I will be sticking with AM4 for the foreseeable future. Always of course unless something better comes along which I doubt it at this point.

I fully endorse buying the monitor first.
You will get a much better idea of what you will need to run it well.
The monitor I'm buying is for a different machine which runs a X570, 3900X and a 3080, so it's more than powerful enough for the monitor that I plan on purchasing. I'm going for a 1440P with a relatively high refresh rate (144hz or higher).

And, unless your 2070 needs more than 8 pin power, 500w should do it.
I found a seasonic sfx 500w unit for $99
https://www.newegg.com/seasonic-focus-sgx-ssr-500sgx-500w/p/N82E16817151230
Not bad with a 10 year warranty.
Mine is the EVGA 2070 FTW 3 Ultra and it has 1 x 8 pin and 1 x 6 pin connector, I think the 500W would be too minimal. The 650W that Logain recommended would be more sufficient for my needs.
 

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