Living room PC build

So I'm thinking about building a replacement for my blu-ray, smart box player that pretty much controls the living room but is doing a terrible job of it. Most of the time the kids end up moving into the computer room and start using my PC to watch programs or play on games.

So I figure I could do a better job by building a mini pc that possibly runs off android (maybe not) in order to do things like stream movies, play dvd's and blu-rays, browse the web and maybe do a bit of light gaming.

Has anyone got any advice for the smallest possible builds that would have mid range specs? I built my first pc last year and this is my next project, I just dont know where to start, any advice on specific components would be great.


Have you thought about an Intel NUC? Or maybe just a chrome cast if you already have an android phone.

There's the Alienware Alpha...'


And there's this for the same price that doubles most of it's specs...

or you could build a low-spec SteamOS box and stream games from your PC...

You didn't really mention a budget, but this should settle all your needs.

Small, powerful build... not the cheapest.


  • Very small (doesn't get much smaller.
  • Silent.. like REALLY silent, even under load (Excellent for movies and quiet games)
  • i5 processor for very good speed, multi-tasking, and gaming performance
  • 8GB of 1600mhz ram (ultra low voltage @1.25v)
  • All power saver components for 24/7 operation (if you wanted)
  • Dust protection (I would add a magnetic dust filter to the top power supply vent for 99% dust proofing)
  • SSD for speedy performance and boot times. No disk fragmentation, and less slow down over time.
  • The PSU is gold efficiency rating and has lots of power for adding almost any graphics card you could want for gaming needs.

**This has integrated graphics, but if you need more for gaming or etc, almost any discrete card you want can fit in this case.

**I only included a single 128GB SSD because I figured you would stream most content online or from another PC on the network. A full sized HDD can be added to the build for additional storage.

Here is a second one that is much more affordable but a bit bigger - This is very similar to above.


Ultra cheap (but still good quality), and pretty much streaming only. Not much future expandability.


  • Cheap
  • Quality parts
  • Very small
  • Still decently quiet
  • i3 devils canyon processor
  • This will handle just about any casual game and any video watching you can throw at it.

**You can still add a DVD or blueray drive to this if you want.

***This isn't really recommended for higher end graphical games by any means without a decent power supply and graphics card.


********All builds have built in wifi as well as 2 Ethernet ports.