Casual PC for my Niece

Hey guys/gals, my niece is starting high school and I offered to build a PC for her. I need some help putting together a parts list.

Needs: Portable - It would be nice if she could easily transport it between home and when she visits her mother.

            Reliable - It needs to last a few years. This goes in hand with the budget.

            Montior - If you can fit a nice budget monitor in then please do so.

            OS - Windows 7

Budget: As cheap as you can make it with out sacrificing longevity. She won't be playing games on it, it will be for browsing the web (YouTube, Facebook, etc.), and researching for school work.

I don't have any brand loyalty, whatever meets the goal.


Thanks, TheNightwingGrayson

Edit: We live in the US.

If she's not tech savvy, is going to have to transport it a lot, is not going to game, i would go for a laptop. Get a cheap one, i prefer lenovo for their sturdiness and overall quality, and maybe add a monitor, mouse and keyboard if she wants the desktop feel. I might personally swap the hdd for an ssd to compensate for the slower processor.


around 600

or 575 if you use this CPU

I would really advise against a desktop... I am all for having a desktop instead of a laptop, but in some cases, it's just not worth it...

name a two year old laptop that you could stand to use, desktops last longer in performance than laptops

I am going to be putting a small ITX together for my brother. should be small enough and powerful enough for a long time. SSD can be optional. I really do like the Monitor that gigabusterEXE suggested. If you have a better budget go with this build.

Edit: Can get Windows 7 instead

And that is based on what theory? Why would a desktop be any different? I use a lenovo r61 from the core2 generation and I like it... 

Here is my suggestion:

I decided to go with a AMD APU build, it will handle average needs easily and on the cheap. The motherboard is Micro ATX for a small form factor. The case is interesting, it has a handle on the top! Great for portability. 4 Gigs of RAM should be fine for the average user and there are two slots free for future upgrading.

Another Micro ATX case with a handle is this one:

It is more expensive and has a love-it-or-hate-it kind of look to it.


I hope I was helpful! Good luck

Maybe an Ultrabook, they are extremely light and sometimes have pretty good specs. I don't think she'll be hardcore gaming, because that's not what they're for. But for school stuff, movies, etc. Should be great.

based on the fact that a desktop will have +2ghz on a laptop of the same arch and can reused the he'd, psu, case and other things if they wanted upgrade, a 3.9 ghz dual core will stand the test of time better than a 1.9ghz one, what can you reuse on a laptop after 3 years when its too slow?

I can build a smaller ligher one, but it may or may not be as cheap, I'm shooting for more expensive

I came in here just to post this. 

But I like the other suggestions of a micro ITX too as it's got portability and is a desktop, but how would you get a monitor anywhere without it getting damaged/breaking? 

Frequency isn't the same as speed... And most of the time I would agree, a desktop is more powerfull, can be upgraded, reused... But you have to look at the situation. We're talking about a non tech savvy person wanting to use it to surf the web... I mean, any processor from the last 5 years can handle that, desktop or laptop... Its not like it is going to change that drastically. The only thing she really needs is high drive speed.

Mind you, a computer doesn't 'become slow'. The user simply cannot live with its performance. But it is wrong to say that a desktop suffers less from this... Upgrade paths are available, but these are not used that often, besides, thats not the point here.