My brother wanted a PC for gaming so I sprang into action looking for Black Friday deals. My credit card also offers 10% cash back at Amazon.com so it was the perfect opportunity to save big. I manually entered all prices to reflect final cost after cash back bonus and mail-in rebates.
I originally planned to get an i3 but thought it was worth it to bump up to an i5 for an extra $60 - $70. I know gaming doesn't require a whole lot of CPU power but after researching benchmarks and reviews a jump from i3 to i5 makes a noticeable difference in FPS. I realize it is a locked CPU and I am using the stock cooler (many would disapprove) but the temps are great and it runs nice and quiet.
Before you say anything, yes, I am using a Z97 board with a locked CPU but I love the color scheme of this board and it paves a path for upgrades in the future. It has some PCI slots for an older wireless-n adapter I had laying around.
Nice inexpensive memory with solid heat sinks to match color scheme.
I could have cut costs here but I insisted to opt for the SSD for the overall snappiness. Once you go SSD you never go back. I have a 500GB WD Black laptop drive I could install for extra storage but I have never had a problem with space with a 250GB SSD.
After a mail-in rebate and cash back bonus I basically stole this card. My brother is only gaming at 1080p so the 2GB memory should be enough. The fans are inaudible. The colors are nice. My brother is able to play his games on Ultra @ 60 FPS so he is happy.
*One thing about this card though is the sagging. Near the power connector the heat sink and fans just hover there and are not secured to the card so the power cable tugs down on it. Kinda cheap feeling card but I have owned several MSI cards and all have been great.
I have always wanted this case for myself so I decided to get it for my brother. Awesome case. Great aesthetics and solid construction. Plenty of space for cable management. I had an NZXT Hue that I wasn't using so I decided to delve into some case modification territory. I drilled 3 holes in the font panel to stick the 3 dials through. I glued the Hue face plate to the front to hide any scratches and burs. I installed in such a way where I could still attach fans or even a water cooler some day.
After reading reviews about the Corsair CX Series I decided to stay away from those even though they are very inexpensive. I went with a 80+ Gold Fully Modular PSU for a great deal I think. Plenty of extra cables I will probably never use but it's nice to have the option. Plenty of power to install a high end card some day too.
My brother is a student at NCSU so he was able to acquire Windows 10 Education for free which was a huge savings for this build.
Overall I had a blast putting this computer together. I enjoyed putting my personal stamp on the machine by mounting the NZXT Hue to front of the case.
EDIT (12/7/2015) : Thanks everyone for feedback. I am always willing to learn more about building PC and appreciate all of your constructive feedback. Also, what is a good trust worthy source for PSU reviews? Users seem to hastily disapprove of PSU choices. And understandably so, it is an important part I just wanted to make sure I make good part choices in the future.