For anyone who thinks they can't build a PC: I'm fourteen years old and I built this gaming rig with my father who hasn't actively played video games since 2001. If a couple of slackers like us can do it, you can.
This build is the upgrade from my parents Intel Core2 Duo rig. Finally, I can enjoy YouTube videos at 1080p 60 FPS and Happy Wheels at max settings.
It's taken me over a year of mowing lawns and saving money from birthdays. I've also spent a lot of my time this past year learning the different parts of a PC and how to build one. I first started researching around May 2014 and started looking at different part lists using Logical Increments and eventually found PCPartPicker.
My partlist has made many evolutions since then. At first, It was a GTX 660 & AMD FX-8350 build at around $800. Later, it changed to an Intel Core i5-4590 and an R9 280 at around $1100 and later to a mini-ITX build with a GTX 960 & AMD Athon CPU at around $800. But after getting impatient, (That's what teenagers are right?) I decided to bring the budget down to around $600 USD.
CPU: I wanted a chip that is fairly cheap, but still has more than two cores. Of course, that task would go to AMD with their FX-6300. This processor runs War Thunder like a champ and is great for rendering and multitasking.
Motherboard: At the time of purchase, the PCPartPicker page for this motherboard said it supported DDR3 1600 RAM, but I later learned that it only supports DDR3 1066 - 1333. So until I get a larger case and an ATX motherboard, my 8GB of RAM will be running at DDR3 - 1333:/ On top of that, I didn't realize that a low GB/s rate for a motherboards meant that it wouldn't be a good idea to upgrade to an SSD later. So to sum it up, I made a noob-move with the motherboard.
RAM: Nothing extremely interesting here, just wanted 8GBs of RAM that matches my Black/Blue color scheme. I am hoping that they won't get in the way for when I buy an Aftermarket CPU Cooler though...
Storage: Again, nothing really interesting. Just a WD 1TB HDD.
GPU: I am extremely happy with this purchase. It's all I'll ever need for the next couple of years because I have no interest in jumping to 1440p or 4K any time soon & I got it at an amazing bargain. Came pre-overclocked which has made my whole rig run rather hot & loud, but it's the motherboard fault for not letting me turn down the clock speed and for not having an aftermarket CPU cooler.
Case: The only reason I got this case instead of my dream case (NZXT S340) is because it was cheaper. Airflow is not great, and I really wish that the case was wider for cable management. As you can see in one of the pictures, the cables are leaving prints in the sound foam.
PSU: You get what you paid for. Again, I wish the case was a bit wider so I wouldn't have to stuff the cables between the hard drive tray and the power supply.
OS: My experience hasn't been the greatest in the Linux Master Race (Having a lot of problems with drivers). Once I get an SSD, I'm going to put a copy of Windows 7 on there until Windows 10 comes out. I am going to be a bit sad when I do transfer to Windows, The Ubuntu GNOME desktop is beautiful.
Keyboard & Mouse: You really get what you paid for when it to the Cooler Master CM Storm Devastator Bundle. The mouse wheel has started squeaking after around three weeks and I haven't been able to turn on the keyboard LED's with Ubuntu.
If I had to build this again I definitely would have waited another month to learn about things like GB/s rates and to get more monies for a motherboard & case, an SSD, and a monitor. Currently, my start up time is 51 seconds.
Post Build Shenanigans: My main goal is to get my own setup with for it, because right now it's sharing the monitor of my parents PC. After that, I would like to buy a DVD Drive, SSD, aftermarket CPU cooler, headphones, a monitor, and then maybe replace the motherboard with an MSI 970A-G43 and the case with a Corsair 100R. I'm also planning to put and old 100GB laptop HDD in my system as well.
I'm hoping that once I get my rig to an acceptable state and with my own setup, I'm hoping to start making YouTube gaming videos later on.
Any advice, tips, or questions about the build would be appreciated.
An update build should come out later this year.
Great budget CPU, runs War Thunder like a champ and would be great for rendering and multi-tasking. Now I just need to get a better motherboard and a better CPU Cooler so I can start overclocking >:)
I have not had a good experience with this motherboard. Low GB/s rate so I wouldn't be a good idea to use this with an SSD, and only supports up to 1333 RAM:(
Great piece of hardware. Looks cool, and haven't had any problems with it.
No problems whatsoever.
Great for games like GTA 5 that are VRAM hogs. Since it's pre-overclocked it is a bit loud though.
Should have been wider for cable management & doesn't have great airflow. Doesn't support <100 milimeter fans.
I did have some problems trying to screw this to the case, but besides that, it's a great PSU.
Can't turn on LED's for the keyboard on Ubuntu and the mouse wheel started squeaking after around 3 1/2 weeks. You really get what you paid for.