Description

It may be a little deceiving to describe a $1500+ worth of components as budget build (all listed prices include tax), but my aim with this PC was to maximise savings on a solid set of components that should last me for the foreseeable future. I hadn't built a PC for at least ten years, so there was a fair learning curve involved at the start. I have to thank both this site and /r/buildapc for initially steering me in the right direction.

I believe my purchasing started at the very beginning of April for the i7-6700k and MSI Z170A-G45 combo from B&H, and ever since then I have been waiting for the prices to drop to their lowest level for the rest of the components. Thanks to a trusty combination of PCPartPicker, /r/buildapcsales, SlickDeals, CamelCamelCamel, Zapier and Telegram I have been able to keep track of price drops as and when they happen. All of the listed resources have been invaluable.

In terms of purchasing it was a tricky time especially for graphics cards with the recent releases from both Nvidia and AMD. In retrospect I believe it actually played in my favour but there were definitely a couple of times where I could have pulled the trigger on deals that I would have definitely come to regret later on. With that being said, the highlight of my component search was managing to snag both the MSI GeForce 980 Ti Golden Edition for $336 and EVGA GeForce GTX 980 Ti CLASSIFIED ACX 2.0+ w/ Backplate for $260. Ideally I would have purchased two of the same cards, but there you go. As for the future I'm going to wait and see what the 1080 Ti ends up looking like, but for now i'm delighted that I have a dual 980 Ti setup for less than the 1080 MSRP of $699.

The toughest purchase out of the lot was when I dropped $189.99 on the newly released Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ATX Tempered Glass. I was mulling over both the Fractal Design R5 and the Corsair Carbide 400C which would have been at least half the price, but my reasoning was that this is at least one of the components that could be reused in a future build. Plus this thing is very easy to work with and absolutely stunning to boot.

When it came to putting the thing together it was generally a pretty smooth process but I did have a couple of hiccups on the way:

  • I couldn't seem to get the watercooling working. The CPU temperature was ballooning on startup and it took me a while to figure out that there was a single USB cable that hadn't been attached. Idiot.
  • When it came to installing the 980 Ti Golden Edition I had no clue what I had to when attaching power. Obviously now I see that it required me to attach two 8-pin connectors but I have to say that the user manual from MSI was absolutely useless on that front. In comparison the directions given from EVGA were very clear and easy to understand. It's a shame that they arrived in the wrong order.
  • My Gigabyte Wireless Adapter has an external aerial that is attached through two screw in connectors. One day I wanted to open up the case to tidy some of the cabling and I totally forgot they were still attached. I wrenched the PC away from the wall only to find that I had totally split both cables in-two. Thankfully I still get a decent wireless signal with nothing attached whilst I wait for the Gigabyte RMA on the aerial which they graciously accepted.

The build is deliciously fast compared the work laptop which I have been camping out on for the past year, and I'm delighted to see that I can crank up basically all of my favourite games to Ultra on 3440x1400. I have to say that I really enjoyed snagging a lot of these deals which was probably more fun than actually putting it together in the end.

Please excuse the lame photos. If anyone is looking for help with grabbing any future deals - i'm more than happy to help.

Comments

  • 34 months ago
  • 2 points

great deals on those 980 ti's. I was SO close to getting a classified for a little more than what you paid. Regret not doing it.

  • 34 months ago
  • 2 points

Im diggin that case....... that case is nice.....

  • 34 months ago
  • 2 points

Had to upvote cos nongarbage speakers. The amount of Logitech foulness on this site is boggling. Nice computer too ;)

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

I really really like these speakers. I managed to get a pretty decent deal on them too ($111.20 for both)!

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Amazing. No idea why more people don't do the basic of audio research and get similar.

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Bro. Congrats on the build. That's actually a VERY nice setup for the price range. Only problem is my OCD would kick me in the nuts for trying a build like that. Lol. I swapped out my disc drive because most of my parts are ASUS and the disc drive was LG... Nothing wrong with LG but my brain said it NEEDS to be ASUS.

But seriously. Very nice build. I'm really impressed with the deals you struck. Especially on the GPUs. Feel free to check out my rig. Its a constant work in progress so feed back is always appreciated.

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

You might already know this but you can overclock your Dell U3415W to 75Hz in NVidia control panel. I have the same monitor and it works flawlessly with 980 Ti's in SLI. I thought I got a good deal on my monitor but you can't beat 0.00!

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Dude I have Dell to thank for that one. Even though mine is a refurb, I have managed to crank it up to 80Hz!

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Its really bugging me that in the second picture only one of the 8 pin pcie power connectors is plugged in. I hope you fixed that! Nice build though +1

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

haha yeah I mentioned that in my issues section, I have since fixed it as it wasn't booting up. The user manual was terrible!

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

"Budget"

Budget builds typically don't have SLI enthusiast cards, Unlocked i7s, 960GB SSDs, 32GB 3000Mhz RAM, $200 cases, H115 AIOs, or Platinum PSUs.. But whatever.. lol.

+1 anyways because those are some seriously awesome deals on the 980tis and the build looks amazing and probably performs even better than it looks.

PS: Run that USB cable from the H115 up the top and then down the back side to the USB panel..

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

I did state that in the opening sentence!

Thanks for the tip about the USB cable, i'll give that a shot today!

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

how did you get w10 and the monitor free?

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

I had an old installation knocking about of Windows 7, and after a lot of trial and error I managed to get the free upgrade to Windows 10.

As for the monitor, Dell managed to **** up so badly with me that I got the monitor for free.

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  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

?

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  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

Ahhh I see.