This journey started about three years ago, when my friends got me interested in computer hardware. My friends went and built, upgraded and in some cases, built a few more computers. And here I am now, finally catching up with them, three years later.
The best part about waiting three years to build your PC is you can learn a lot from what your friends did right, and what they did wrong (which was a lot). My first friend to build a PC built it with an AMD FX-8350 and a NVidia GTX 770. To this day he still claims it's the best computer, even though he built it with an ATX motherboard and a huge case (Fractal Design R4 iirc) and refuses to bring it to LAN parties "because it's too heavy and awkward", even though we offer to drive him to the LAN party. Learning from that, I wanted to get something in a smaller form factor. Ideally that would have been Mini ITX, but unfortunately, when I first ordered parts a while ago (more on that later), only mATX motherboards were available for Ryzen.
My second friend to build a computer, well he didn't, really. He upgraded an old Dell computer with a better GPU and RAM, and called it a day (granted, the computer did already have an i7 in it, so it was and still is a good computer). Later on he upgraded his GPU from a NVidia GTX 750ti to an AMD RX 480 8GB. In an attempt to be different, I waited for a few more weeks for the RX 500 series to be released, so I wouldn't have the exact same GPU chip running in my computer. I managed to get a Gigabyte RX 580 8GB Gaming about a week after AMD released them from a local CanadaComputers - after waiting for DirectCanada to cancel my order for the same card since they were out of stock but took about 5 days to update their stock levels on their website.
AMD Ryzen was my main reason for actually building the computer. I don't consider myself an AMD fanboy, but Intel's pricing and lackluster performance upgrades every generation sort of annoyed me (I actually remember going on a full on rant about Skylake being a complete waste of money and R&D from Intel, since Haswell Refresh was just about as good. The rant was also very loud, and it was mainly just me talking to myself - luckily no one else heard me when I did that). When I heard about AMD's new Zen architecture, I was intrigued and excited. When the Ryzen 7 benchmarks came out, I promised myself I would buy Ryzen 5, since I didn't need the performance of Ryzen 7 and I was hoping the nice performance to price for Ryzen processors would get Intel out of their comfort zone, as it appears to have with the release of their weird Kaby Lake-X and Skylake-X processors. It didn't bother me to wait, since I'd been planning builds on my pcpartpicker account since around the time my first friend built his computer (I actually made a part list with an AMD FX-9560 shudder).
Now for the case story: I originally bought the Thermaltake Urban s1 mATX case, refurbished from Amazon, thinking it was a great deal ($44.99 Canadian). What could possibly be broken with a case? Well, the only circuit in it was faulty - the power button would randomly trip and cause my computer to shutdown or bring up a pop-up saying shutting down in 60 seconds (luckily I could cancel that, thanks Ubuntu). So I sent that back, and that caused me to have to use my computer outside of a case - on top of my motherboard box, actually (see pictures). I didn't order another case immediately since I couldn't decide on one - I'm rather picky with cases (I actually couldn't find one that I liked, even though there are hundreds to chose from). Last Thursday (June 1st), I finally decided to get the Cooler Master Silencio 352, even though it was way more expensive (you can't go wrong with a SD card reader, right?), and Amazon shipped it in two days (I chose and paid for free shipping (4-8 day shipping), but I'm not complaining), so it arrived Monday (June 5th).
I threw all the components in as soon as I got home from school.
People may notice I have no OS listed. That is because I installed Linux Ubuntu MATE, because I'm too cheap to pay for Windows (actually, mainly because I was tired of all the annoying Windows 10
Most components were chosen because they were cheap
Prices aren't locked here because the Canadian dollar sucks and honestly I don't think everyone wants to see my prices for everything (probably so they can laugh at how bad the Canadian dollar is, but whatever). Locked Prices part list: https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/user/NGnius/saved/vC9ZLk