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First Build: Non-OC, GTX 1080 in Core V21

by kirbydabear


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

Nov. 15, 2017

CPU Clock Rate

3.5 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.67 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

10.01 GHz


Excited to build my own PC for the first time (and typing this up on it!)

I built this since my laptop (no slouch in its own right) is approaching 4 years old, and though I added some storage and RAM, I'd still like a more powerful machine for learning photo/video editing and some occasional gaming.

I figured for a first build I'd keep it small (MicroATX), and the Core V21 went on sale with a decent rebate and has plenty of room if I want to try an AIO or anything. Relatively easy case to build in, lots of customizability (the 4 non-front/back panels are interchangeable in any combination). Also the included 200mm fan is near-silent at normal speeds and barely noticeable when gaming.

I wasn't necessarily looking to try OC'ing in my first build, so when the 7600 (non-K) and a B250M mobo went on sale (the mobo with a rebate), I went for it. The B250M Gaming Pro isn't the most featureful, but it's got plenty in a really small package.

The RAM is limited by Mobo to 2400, but 16 GB went on sale for that price for a couple of days so I jumped on it.

I wanted a 960 EVO for the speed. I'm not going to be playing too many games or storing too many files or anything, and I can always add a second drive if necessary.

The graphics card went on sale, and at that price a low-end 1080 would have been fine but the ROG Strix card is a bargain.

The SeaSonic PSU is nice, and a sale + rebate brought the price down to "gotta get it now" range.

I added a red case fan since the Mobo has some ambient red lighting and the Strix card has some RGB capabilities.

The wifi card is for cases (such as currently) where I can't attach ethernet -- better to have it than not.

The monitor is really nice so far, and at a relatively good price for a decent 144Hz screen.

Also my cable management needs work, I know.

Overall, for a little under $1200 (discounting the monitor, win10), I feel like I did pretty well :)

Part Reviews


Got it on sale, wasn't planning to OC so it works out fine. Does everything I ask it to.

CPU Cooler

Quiet, cool, and looks nice to boot. A little weird to install but not too much of a hassle.

Thermal Compound

Stay frosty, my friends. Also 4g is enough for multiple builds.


Not very feature-packed, but I got it for $60 and it has everything I need. (Not planning to OC or SLI/Crossfire) Notes: 3 fan headers (1 CPU + 2 SYS) 2 RAM Slots 1 PCI-E x16, 2 x1 Has both on-board USB 2.0 and 3.0 headers Has ambient red lighting


Got this at a "steal" level price for late 2017, even though I only needed 2400.


Transfer data in the fast lane(s)

Video Card

Good card, fairly quiet, got it for $510 so I'm happy


This is a great case but for one thing: THE PSU BRACKET. I was debating whether to dock a star but it annoyed the crap out of me so I did.

Power Supply

The Mobo/CPU/PCI-E cables come sleeved, which is cool. Modularity is nice, as is the warranty.

Wireless Network Adapter

Connects to interwebz signals. Haven't tested bluetooth (which requires connection to a USB-2.0 header on Mobo if I'm not mistaken)

Case Fan

Quiet and bright red. It's a nice fan. The Magnetic-Levitation bearing or whatever does its job.


Looks good, got it for $200. Very adjustable and has different input options (DVI or DP required for 144Hz)

Comments Sorted by:

Otterman366 13 Builds 3 points 17 months ago

You ought to work on that cable management

kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

Very true.

samuel_cordle02 2 points 17 months ago

i feel like you probably should have done a bit better on the cpu with the 1080.

kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

I don't disagree. I think my upgrade (when I feel like stepping up) would be an OC-able CPU/Mobo combo. I would have liked an i5-8400 for this build, but availability and the limited mobo selection (only Z370 now) pushed me back to 7th gen.

If I get around to upgrading, I already have a pretty darn good GPU to plug into the new machine.

WIthdraws 2 points 17 months ago

Very nice build! How did you get that 7600 for so cheap? They're normally floating around the $200+ range rather than $179. Anyways, very nice!

kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

Thanks! Just caught in on sale. Amazon had it for $179 about 10 days ago, and then they had the 7600K for $189 a couple days after I received my 7600. I debated doing the swap, but a bird in the hand and all that.

damonworland 1 point 15 months ago

It’s your first build so I don’t expect it to Be the best. Probably get a hard drive along with that ssd and get a better cpu. i7 with a1080 works WAY better than an i5. It will cost a little over $300 for the upgrade.

andrew5782 1 point 11 months ago

Very nice build. Question, did you have an troubles fitting that graphics card inside that case? I am planning to upgrade to a 1080 and have this same case, but I was worried that some of these bigger cards wouldn't fit.

kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

The case can fit large cards without an issue. This particular card is on the larger side and there's room to spare.

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WIthdraws 1 point 17 months ago

To be fair, his system is very capable of reaching 144+ fps in any game, and this seems like a really good price for a 144hz monitor. I agree that matching them together would make a world of a difference, but sometimes that cannot happen.

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kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

It seems FreeSync is included on cheaper monitors (i.e. it doesn't add much to price) whereas G-Sync is $100-$150 more for an otherwise comparable monitor. I was looking for $180-$220, and this happened to have everything I was looking for at a reasonable price. If it didn't have freesync I probably still get it. If I used an AMD GPU, it would have been a nice bonus but since FreeSync isn't forced on it's not the end of the world.

[comment deleted by staff]
kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

Honestly right now it's pretty much harder to find a 144Hz relatively cheap monitor without FreeSync than with it... (the joy of open-source)

[comment deleted by staff]
kirbydabear submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

Point being that if you're looking for a 144Hz monitor, it'll most likely have FreeSync. Since that doesn't detract from the value, it's not a bad thing no matter what GPU you use.