I am a casual gamer, ok that's an over statement, I am an occasional gamer, but I still wanted a system that could handle any game I throw at it with good FPS as well as eventually making the move to VR at some point. I also like to dabble in some home video editing and Photo Editing. The last system I built was to big for my liking, I Wanted to build something smaller.
Since Motherboards have all necessary components included and as Video cards get more powerful I do not see myself needing more than one PCI-E slot for the GPU, MINI ITX made Perfect sense. The motherboard was the hardest decision I had to make because I wanted a motherboard that offered great compatibility with MacOS, yes (I am into Hackintoshing) I usually buy Gigabyte but their Skylake Mini-ITX was late and when it did come around, they dropped thunderbolt 3 from their GA-Z270N-Gaming 5 and when I compared all the 200 series Mini-ITX boards the Asrock Fatal1ty Z270 Gaming ITX/AC offered the best option that suited my needs.
Now for the CPU, one may say the I7-7700K is overkill for my needs, but I want to keep this PC for at least four years and I want to make sure it can handle the next generation of applications and to cool the CPU, I went with the Corsair H80i V2 because I like closed loops and they work very well for mild overclocking, besides the heat sinks are just too bulky. Memory wise I usually get whatever is on sale, I once read a very thorough review of several dozen memory brands and speed but the difference was negligible in real world performance for the additional price, although they did score well in benchmarks. I only went with 16GB (2x8GB) due to price, I plan on upgrading to 32GB (2x16GB) once prices go down.
Now on to the storage, Do you NVME, yes I had to do that. The motherboard has and NVME x4 slot which I occupied with Samsung's Evo 960 250GB , I have never used a faster drive! but you are probably wondering why I went with a 250GB drive, well that is because it is a system drive I only use it for the OS and Applications install. it is partitioned 40GB for MacOS and the rest is for Windows and that is way more than I need. I also have a 512GB Evo 840 pro (already had) that I use for game install and a 1TB HDD (already had) for media files and downloads.
The GPU is the most essential component to a gaming rig, as I said earlier I wanted a decent video card that can hold its own in a variety of tasks and since I do not game a lot, I decided on the GTX 1070 and let me be honest, last generation I would have been happy with a GTX 980 but I had a GTX 970 and this time around my GTX 1070 is on par with last Gen's Titan X, so yeah I cannot complain. I think The GTX 1070 is the best all around card.
What good is all those components if you cannot power them? To handle that task, I went with an EVGA 550 G2, I picked it up from a dude on craigslist for $30, I do not see a difference from my last PSU the Corsair RM850i, total overkill for my last system; to house the whole thing I chose the Thermaltake V1, after analyzing many mini-ITX cases and seeing how the builds look, the thermaltake V1 was the king of the hill for my build, although I wish the windowed side panels were readily available.
I also added the two 80mm fans on the back, they are fairly quiet as exhaust fans and gets the job done. Last but not least, I added a little pizzazz, by way of the Deepcool RGB 350 LED kit, cheapest on the market at $16.99 and I also did a little paint job, nothing fancy. Oh yes I also bought a Xbox one BT Controller :-) let me know what you think?