Daughter's Birthday Project Part 1

So it’s my daughter’s 9th birthday and she’s absolutely elated to graduate from my wife’s old 2009 Mac Mini that has been the designated “kid’s computer” for the last two years. Evidently, sharing a single computer between three young girls does not always go so well, but I digress. I explained to her that I would select the parts, but she would be responsible for picking the decorative bits and putting the whole thing together. In the meantime, I have been looking at learning how to get a good-looking spray paint job, so this was a good excuse to get rattle-canning.

Being the good (and thrifty) father that I am, I took a hard look at what she does on a computer and made some considerations for the hardware. Her needs are as follows:

  1. Access the internet.

  2. Use flash for games.

  3. Be able to save a lot of pictures of candy to the desktop.

As far as how it looked, she hated the idea of a case with windows or a lot of tacky vents and fans (kids these, right?), but she liked the idea of lights. She really liked mean-looking black cases, but wanted some purple paint and lights to add some girliness to it. With all of that in mind, I decided she wouldn’t get a lot out of a super-ultra-mega-cross-firing-SLI-amazeballs-rig, so I was able to go kind of low-buck. Relief. I put PCPartPicker in one tab and a whole bunch of tech review sites in all over the other tabs. Here’s what I ended up with:

  • Processor: Intel Pentium G3220 3 GHz – $68
  • Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H81M-DS2V – $60
  • RAM: Crucial Ballistix Sport 4GB Single DDR3 – $43
  • Hard Disk: Kingston Digital 120GB SSD – $91
  • Power Supply: Corsair 430W CX-430R – $40
  • Wifi Card: TP-LINK TL-WN881ND PCI-E – $19
  • Case: NZXT Source 210 – $40
  • Fans: 2x Corsair 120mm Purple LED – $16

  • Total: $377

Not bad, right? Solid-state hard drive, even! Fuck; I need a monitor, so there’s another $100. Mouse and keyboard? Shit, take another $40. At least by using elementaryOS, I don’t have to pay more than a donation for the operating system. So, here’s what we have:

Let’s slap some paint on it.Let’s slap some paint on it.

Here’s my concern: I’ve built plenty of computers in the past, but I’ve never really tried to get crafty with them. I’ll do some stickers and whatnot, but this painting thing is a brand new world for me. Let’s see how that goes.

Stay tuned for Part 2 for the beginning of the Great Paint Adventure.

Here we go!Here we go!