productivity pc build for mom

Recently I found out that my moms old desktop PC from 2011 was broken. I have been building PC’s for years now, so I decided to take a look and see if I could fix it.

Turns out the old system was running an AMD Athalon chip which is now many generations old. A 2.5″ 5000rpm hard drive, and some other very last gen components… It was was time for some upgrades.

With Christmas fast approaching I decided this was a great time to build my mom a new PC and surprise her with it.

System Specifications

CPUIntel Core i3-7100
RAM8GB Corsair DDR4 2400Mhz
MotherboardGigabyte H270N-Wifi
STORAGEIntel 545s 256GB SSD
CASERealan E-W60
DIMENSIONS200 x 60 x 225mm
OSWindows 10 Pro

Build Process

While this was not a complex build at all, it was definitely still interesting if not only because of the very unique Realan E-W60 case. Check out the entire build process, including the Christmas day reveal to my mom in the video below.

Part List

Intel Core i3-7100:
Gigabyte H270N:
Noctua NH-L9i:
Corsair 2x4GB:
Intel 545s SSD:
Realan E-W60:


    • I build an HTPC with the same power supply. Its a basic flatboard converter but works well. It will only works with a CPU that’s 65w or lower. It relies on a power brick 12v. The power supplies usually come with the case. You can remove it and try a 160w pico PSU.

  1. Nice build, but it looks like you could have built an Intel NUC, at a lower price and gotten similar performance.

  2. Same question. Did your order come with the PSU? Realan website says product does come with PSU and inverter but Alibaba says no. Any info would be appreciated. Also what inverter/charger did you use since what supposedly comes with it is only rated for 60 Watts

  3. Thank you. I picked the big brother. I really like the case, and it worked out great for my Linux system.
    If you want you can view it on at

    I really love the styling and quality of the case. The blue led on the bottom is really cool. I’ve always wanted a mini-itx system with a really good looking case. Thanks to you I finally found one.

    Again I really appreciate your build video with your mom’s new pc.

    Thank you again.

  4. I am thinking of a similar build with an I3 8100 or an I5 8400 with 16 or 32 megs of ram. I am looking at the EW-80 case with 150 watt power supply. I will be doing some photo editing with this setup.

    How are the temperatures in this build?
    Any other thoughts would be appreciated.


    • Temps are low, never going above 50C. I used an i3 though. If you are going to be doing photo editing, the taller version of the case may work a little better.

  5. Sir IAM from India. My budget is not big. I want to know if it is possible to build using core 2 duo processor. Can You suggest possible motherboard. Can we use existing hard disc drive. I will be using at home for normal work. No gaming

  6. Hi, great video. Do you think that there is a cooler on the market that will fit inside the bigger E-W80 case and that is able to cool a i7-8700 (not K) ?

    • That would be tough. The biggest issue with cooling in this case is that the only ventilation comes from the sides. If you used side intake fans an L9i with a 25mm tall fan may come close. It would struggle with any intense tasks though.

      • Sorry, Thanks Lenard, nice find. Thanks to you too Jay. I think the best part of DIY PC’s is that you’re putting updated hardware inside…. i.e, no need for the DVD drive, etc. that you find in a vast majority of pre-built systems sold today.

  7. namaskaram Jay,
    Way kool present for your mom! I need to replace my old and outdated Toshiba laptop. I have been looking at the NUC, Asrock A300, Zotac Zbox, etc. I am not a gamer, so do not need dedicated GPU. I do use programs C++ programs (I’m a online futures trader), the CPU needs to be able to process raw data from the trading centers, in Chicago, and New York. My computer is running 23 hrs. a day, 5 days a week. Due to the recent bad news of Intel’s CPU security flaws, I’m interested in the AMD Ryzen 5’s and 7s. I use to build tower systems about 20 yrs. ago. I have watched a number of ITX builds, so I feel confident that I can do one now. My concerns are noise and cooling. I would like to keep the net cost around $700. I could use your counsel regarding cases (metal vs plastic), M.B’s-AMD (who is most reliable), Fan/cooling system. I need at least 3-M.2 slots (SSD-2280). I/O ports: 3+ 3.0/1, DMHI/DP (2+ monitors), RJ-45, etc. Thank you.

  8. Do you think it is possible to put a 24 inch EIZO monitor on top of this case? Is it sturdy enough to hold the weight?

  9. Jay, a big hello from Connecticut
    Did see your video that you did a small pc for your mom.
    Now that was really nice and did enjoy watching the whole video.
    Keep doing more videos you have a great talent.
    God bless and take care


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