Description

Some of these parts were re-purposed from a previous build I did earlier this year. Overall the price is accurate, however, I spent $602.11 on the remainder of the parts.

I built this for a friend of mine so he can stop gaming on his potato Macbook with integrated graphics. You know it's time to move on when you have to restart your computer before you play League of Legends and run Skype simultaneously. His potato was dragging our group down! I had to do something.

I went with the CPU/GPU combo that I did mainly because it gives him room to upgrade his GPU later down the road without worrying about his CPU. He's a PC noob, so simplification is ideal.

A 950 is a huge upgrade to his Intel HD 4000 graphics. I overclocked the card to get a bit more performance out of it, as I wasn't satisfied with the lows the card was hitting. It is otherwise incredibly stable, especially with its temps.

I bought this power supply without realizing it's 10mm over the case limit. While I was waiting for it to arrive I did initial testing using a basic 80+ 500w PSU by EVGA. The FSP PSU definitely still fits, there's just not much room to spare between that and the HDD cage. With fat cables though you probably wouldn't be able to work with it. Flat cables work fine.

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out and it looks pretty nice.

Thumbs up if you get the reference in my title!

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

Easy install. Surprisingly good performance for the cost. Cryorig is currently my favorite CPU manufacturer for their simple instillations and generously included large tubes of thermal paste.

I have this on an i5-6500 and even under a full load stress test in AIDA64, the fan didn't even reach 700rpm and the CPU was cozy in the low 50s. Stable.

Great value for $20.

Motherboard

I've been craving low end gaming motherboards and here is a great option!

This board has nice LED features, I liked the Bios enough (and it has OC'ing options!), aesthetically simple, but with enough flash to set it apart from standard mATX boards in this price range for the 1151 platform. It's exactly what I was looking for.

The only grief I have with this board was how difficult it was to plug in the motherboard power. The amount of force I had to use was way beyond my comfort level.

Video Card

I was pretty concerned seeing a low FPS of 8 in my stock Heaven benchmark. However, after testing how far I could overclock the card, it improved significantly.

I have it OC'd to a core 1622mhz / memory to 7028mhz. This improved the minimum FPS to 22, with only slight improvements on the average FPS. Much better! I tried pushing it a little further, but it started to artifact in the benchmark so I set it back to this setting.

Heaven settings set to: High, 2xAA. Moderate Tesselation turned on after OC'ing.

Case

Cable management can definitely be improved a bit more, otherwise it's a decent little case!

The HDD cage could definitely be moved a bit more to the right to allow for better clearance with power supplies. This case says it cannot support PSU's exceeding 160mm, however I have a 170mm PSU in this case and it fits fine. It's important to note however that a non-modular PSU with fat cables at that size will probably make your life very hard. I do not recommend doing that. Flat cables are a much better choice in general for this case. If you don't plan to use the HDD cage, you won't have any issues.

I had a minor annoyance with the 5.25 bay clip, as it would not auto lock my fan controller. I ended up having to remove the clip and screw the controller in instead.

The case itself is very lightweight; typical of the SPEC line. I've built in the SPEC-03 before, so it was pretty familiar territory and I knew what I was getting myself into.

Corsair, why you no CPU power hole?

Power Supply

I decided to take a chance on this power supply, as I hadn't heard of them until two weeks ago. There are a few things that I liked before I hit the purchase button.

  1. It's 80+ gold and a Tier 1 on Tom's Hardware's PSU tier list 2.0
  2. Fully modular flat cables
  3. It comes with different sticker designs for the side of the power supply. the standard one in blue that is already on it, as well as green and red designs. I haven't seen any PSU at this price point or even the $200+ price point that gives you that option!

One thing I didn't like: The design of the Sata/Molex cables.... just... why?

Log in to rate comments or to post a comment.

Comments

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

One of my favorite PSUs! It's very high quality.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

loving the awesomesauce t-shirt reference. or is it paul? i get them confused

  • 49 months ago
  • 0 points

Paul! I had to double check before posting it, it's okay haha.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

The blue fans, the red fan, the title...

A wild Kyle appears?

All jokes aside, this is a great build. I actually need to do one of these, as I have the EXACT SAME SITUATION. Why people expect to game on Macbooks is completely beyond me lol

  • 49 months ago
  • 2 points

Some people like 2 waste money on a $2,000 mac pro just to see that they could of spent $600 and still be abou as good....lol

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I was one of those noobs once upon a time. My family in Canada play League on their Macs, but that's all they play so it works for them I guess.

I played WoW on my 2006 Macbook with 512MB of ram until I started college in 2010 and the HDD was failing. Bought an iMac (ATI Radeon HD5670 I think?).. played games on that until last March when I finally joined the PC Master Race. I was mostly gaming on consoles up until last year.

Haven't looked back since.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, i might legit use this build for my computer! Any thoughts or warnings you have about this build? Btw instead of a i5 processor i might use an i7 Thanks.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

If everything looks good to you and your needs are the same, I would say go for it! Any reason for going with an i7 though? If you're just using the build for gaming like this one is for, I say save your money and use that extra cash on other parts of the build you may be interested in tweaking or adding to.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks, I might go with the i5 if it is just gaming, but there is some editing happening as well... Your build looks very good and everything looks great...

Sorry for the late reply.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

It all depends what kind of editing you're doing. :) I am not an expert on editing requirements, so I would ask around here for that.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I would say if ur going with an i7 I assume you have a high budget and if ur getting an i7 get the 6700k and a Z170 unless you don't need that much performance.

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

The 6700 non k and a h170 is also perfectly fine

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

PositiveVibes:)

My birthday is coming up on Friday, June 3!

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

Awesome build

I myself might be using this mobo with the i5 6600k

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

You want a Z170 board for that processor.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

How many fan headers does the mobo has?

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I believe 3 total. One for cpu and two for additional fans. Check the newegg specs.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

I've been looking for a build like this for ages!

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

hey man great build, what are the fps and framerates like on league of legends, ive been thinking of getting the gtx 950 sc and throwing it in an old prebuilt pc along with a new psu, the prebuilt has an amd athlon 2 x4 620 cpu and 8 gigs of ram so it wont be bottlenecking at all for league of legends, just wondering how you think the gpu would perform, thanks.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

The 950 can handle League maxed out without a problem. Even the 750ti can decimate league maxed out.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

thanks for the reply man, what about skyrim, i dont really care too much about the graphic settings i just want 60-80 fps

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

I haven't played Skyrim in years lol. I would look up benchmarks on YouTube maybe.

And no problem!

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

How many monitors do u have in this setup?

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

He has a single 1080p 60hz monitor for this setup.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

But you can add a second monitor for sure right? The micro atx board doesn't effect anything.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

It's the GPU that matters. Lol. Always check your monitors ports as well. Remember hdmi, dvi, display port, vga are different.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

k thanks

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

what's the refernce in "stay positive"?

  • 44 months ago
  • 2 points

Positive air pressure.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Wooo I was right

  • 46 months ago
  • 0 points

By the way, the GTX 950 is severely bottlenecking the i5 6500.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

How is it bottlenecking? The GPU is entry level and the CPU is plenty strong enough for future upgrades.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

The 950 is holding back the CPU. It's very difficult to explain how bottlenecks work.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Well, I would've rather gotten a better 4 core CPU and a lower end GPU than the other way around. Plus it's his first PC, so he can add a better GPU in the future when he feels comfortable enough to do so.

[comment deleted]