After a failed first build attempt in 2015 due to bad luck and incompetence, I have finally taken another shot at building a computer, now with even more money at stake. Stupid, I know. On the bright side, though, the wait was definitely worth the outcome.
Without further ado, let me introduce you to 6 months of planning. This is Etna, my all-rounder machine built from the ground up with actual competence, care, and probably way too much stress.
Everything actually managed to go without a hitch! It went really well, actually. I'm very happy with this build. A quick thank-you to r/buildapc, the PCMR Discord, and plenty of others who helped me plan this thing.
Update: I have upgraded my GTX 1050 Ti to a GTX 1060 3GB. Please reference my review of it for more information. (Another) Update: My g430 headset decided to (quite literally) fall apart on me, so I bought some HyperX Cloud IIs as a replacement.
A really outstanding budget gaming CPU. Coming from a non-hyperthreaded Pentium user, this thing is really a beast. AMD really outdid themselves with this series of chips (finally), and I'm very happy to be able to choose AMD because it actually does better than the competition. Absolute i5 crusher (most of the time). Overclocking was quick and simple, and it still runs relatively cool.
Not a whole lot to say, really. It's just your typical motherboard plus a strip of white accent lighting. It does the job, has all of the ports I can ask for, etc. Only bought this instead of the better, "glowier" models MSI offered because the others were out of stock.
It does the job, looks nice, etc. Going from 2gb to 16gb of RAM was really an improvement. I have yet to use any more than 70% of RAM on any set of tasks I have set upon this rig.
This is an amazing M.2 drive. I was considering not getting an SSD due to the price, but I'm glad I got this anyway. A very fast & affordable solution.
This drive has served me well. This actually belonged to the 2015 build, but has since been set into a surrogate system. It is planned to be moved into this PC as a secondary drive in the near future. WD has never failed me, and I hope this won't anytime soon.
UPDATE 2/23/19: Recently transferred the disk into my main system. Formatted the drive and everything of the install it had and downloading some 300gb of games and photo/video backups and it's still running good as new; 4 years in and not a single problem.
Definitely an upgrade from my old 1050 Ti. Got it from a hardware swap from a friend. It comes with the added feature of being able to crank the settings up just a bit higher and much less stuttering. The fans don't run when at idle, so I guess that's kind of cool. Problem with that is once it does start to heat up, the fans don't kick on until it's already pretty hot. Not a huge deal, but it is a flaw with the card and prevents some overclocking potential.
What a case. This thing is absolutely amazing to work with. The cable management is glorious, even for a newbie builder like myself. The colors are a nice touch, too. Should have gotten the sound blocking p400s, because when my fans ramp up it sounds like a hollow tube. Spend the extra money, you won't regret it.
Does what it needs to and the packaged cables are nice. Mine in particular has some issues with coil whine, which is incredibly annoying. Can't be bothered to send it in, though.
Sounds much quieter than the stock fans from my Phanteks p400. Looks pretty nice, too. Bought it because it was cheap, but it's actually much better than I anticipated.
It's a monitor I got for free. Colors are decent but washed out. It does the job as a secondary monitor.
Got this thing on sale for $130 instead of $180. Man, was that worth it. It's a very nice 1080p panel. Colors are excellent, the built-in software is easy to use, and the one button under it. Yeah, that's a thing. Problem is, it's a bit short, so if you're used to anything larger than a 21.5in panel, you might need to adjust to the height of this thing. Otherwise, it's an outstanding panel for what I paid.
My first mechanical keyboard. The sound is nice (but loud), the keys feel great to type on, and it glows red! It feels wonderful and the keycaps are nice, though one came with a crack in it.
Pretty simple mouse. Just needed something that felt nice and does what it needed to, and this fit the bill. Much better than the OEM HP mouse I'm used to. It definitely feels like a cheap mouse, though.
Does its job, though the color doesn't match my setup. Bass is good (in my opinion) and sounds good. The mic is, well, a mic. It's not great, but it does what it needs to. Sometimes people complain that I sound a bit quiet, though.
UPDATE: After roughly a year of normal use, the thing ended up just falling apart piece by piece; the plastic started chipping away for no reason and ended with me having two dangling, unusable earmuffs instead of a functional headset. I guess you really do get what you pay for. Bought a HyperX Cloud II after this and couldn't have been happier with that purchase.
Really nice speakers. My first subwoofer in a speaker set from what I can remember. The bass is nice, but lacking compared to more expensive options. Audiophiles, this isn't quite what you're looking for. For basic use and listening to some music, however, it sounds plenty good enough for what I spent on them.