Description

This is my first time ever building a pc.

First Desktop: My very first desktop was a Dell Inspiron 3847 - with an i7-4790, 8gb DDR3, a 1 TB HDD, and mediocre power supply. Needing better graphics for 2K and yes Fortnite, I decided that it was time to upgrade. Rather than buy a 1050 Ti and install it in the the OEM PC, I made arguably the best decision of my life, and decided to build a new PC.

First Build, V1: This was my first PC build of many more to come. In hindsight, I could have partitioned my budget more effectively, but I still appreciate learning from the opportunity.

  • CPU: Ryzen 5 1600
  • Motherboard: ASRock B350 Pro4
  • RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws V 2x8gb DDR4-3200 CL16
  • SSD: Samsung 860 Evo 250 GB 2.5"
  • HDD: WD Blue 1 TB 3.5"
  • GPU: Zotac GTX 1070 Ti 8 GB Mini
  • Case: Phanteks Eclipse P350X
  • PSU: Corsair CX650 (2017)
  • Wireless Adapter: ASUS PCE-AC51 PCIe x1
  • Case Fans: Corsair AF120 "White" x2

First Build, V2: The first iteration of my build wasn't aesthetically pleasing, to say the least. I really wanted something I could show off to people, so I decided to make some aesthetic upgrades, as well as performance ones.

  • CPU: same
  • Motherboard: same
  • RAM: same
  • SSD: same
  • HDD: same
  • GPU: EVGA GTX 1070 iCX SC2
  • Case: same
  • PSU: same
  • Cable Extensions: Antec Cable Extensions
  • Wireless Adapter: Fenvi AX200 PCIe x1
  • Case Fans: Corsair ML120 Pro White x5
  • Fan Hub: Deepcool FH-10

Explanation for changes:**

  • Zotac 1070 Ti 8 GB Mini: It's honestly not a bad card. Temperatures were fine, noise levels were fine, but I absolutely hated how it looked in my case. My brother happened to need a graphics card for his games, and I found a decent B-stock deal on the EVGA 1070 8 GB iCX SC2, swapped it out. It was a downgrade, but I play at 1080p 144hz anyway.

  • PCE-AC51: This, on the other hand, was not a good purchasing decision. Realtek chipsets are known to have issues, and I experienced some of those. Ping spikes were extremely common and download was not stable. I switched to the AX200 - it supports WiFi 6, has an Intel chipset, and is overall a better card.

  • AF120s x2: I bought these initially for the sole purpose of aesthetics. These fans are neither good for aesthetics nor performance. They're loud, the LED's aren't spread out well, are 3-pin, and aren't actually white. Comparing the colors on these fans to my newer ML120 Pro Whites, the AF120s have a much more blue-ish tone. Because they were so loud, I adjusted the speed using voltage control- meaning that the LEDs were dimmed. So much for aesthetics. The ML120s (refurbished) were on sale on Black Friday 2018 for $14, so I picked up 5 of them.

  • Antec Cable Extensions: Aesthetics. Stock PSU cables are ugly.

  • Deepcool FH-10: I have 5 fans and my motherboard only has 3 headers. This solved that issue and works flawlessly. It's attached using velcro.

Upgrades for Later:

Keyboard: Tomoko Mechanical Keyboard (https://www.amazon.com/TOMOKO-Water-Resistant-Mechanical-Keyboard-Non-Conflicting/dp/B01DBJTZU2)

Hiraliy: Gaming Mouse (https://www.amazon.com/HIRALIY-Backlit-Programmable-Buttons-Optical/dp/B01M22T6XE/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1530729361&sr=1-2&keywords=hiraliy+f300)

Obviously I skimped on peripherals to improve my PC, but I plan to improve that in the future.

Overclocking notes: I'm too lazy to overclock my CPU. RAM, on the other hand, was extremely easy. I downloaded Thaiphoon Burner, found out that my ram used CJR (to my surprise; everyone on forums with the same kit received MFR), entered that into Ryzen DRAM calculator, entered the values into my BIOS, and then verified using Memtest86. I ended up getting 3200mhz CL14-17-17-28!

Conclusion: Building a PC was the best thing I could have ever chosen to do. This was only made possible thanks to my parents and friends who helped me through the process. I cannot thank Scattervolt enough for providing the opportunity to learn about PC's, and special thanks to the members of his Discord server who helped me through the process.

Part Reviews

CPU

Great CPU for the price. It's difficult to select an Intel chip over this considering it comes with a good stock cooler (Wraith Spire, which is better than the 2600's Wraith Stealth) and how cheap it is. It might be slower in IPC and clock speeds, but for the tasks I do, more threads certainly help.

Motherboard

A great bang-for-your-buck motherboard. Has 3 fan headers which can limit upgradability, but that's expected in this price range. It's essentially a 3+3 phase with double the components, and also has a decent heatsink. For under $70-80, that's not bad at all. It's also black and white, which is a plus for aesthetics. No debugging features though (thankfully they weren't needed anyway) and the RGB expansion is limited due to the fact that it only has a 4-pin 5050 header.

Memory

Great kit! I received CJR and was able to overclock to 3200mhz CL14-17-17-28 with no issues. I have seen on forums that others received MFR though, so keep that in mind. Otherwise, it's black and has a nice looking heatspreader.

Storage

Overpriced thanks to the Samsung brand name, but is fast nonetheless. Cheaper drives such as the L5 Lite 3D, TCSunbow X3, SU800, and MX500 would suffice. If you're spending this much on an SSD, either get one with more space for the same price or jump to an NVMe drive such as the Sabrent Rocket.

Case

Good case to build in as a beginner! Cable management is made extremely easy with the velcro straps and cable tie-down points. Power supply shroud isn't very spacious thanks to the HDD cage, but I used a non-modular power supply and it was fine. There is A LOT of space near the front of the case though; it's just something to consider when planning out your build. My first build looked extremely empty as a result. RGB isn't compatible with every motherboard though.

Power Supply

Good power supply - better than the CXM in terms of protections. The lack of modularity makes it smore difficult to cable manage but it's a great choice your your money.

Comments

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build, man. I noticed that you don't have a top exhaust fan. What are temps like?

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! During idle, temperatures are around 27-28 degrees Celcius. I haven't checked the temps under load though. I'll tell you when I get them!

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

Looks good. Why did you use that god awful cable for the gpu. Pretty sure your psu has 2 6+2 pin PCIe cables.

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah I didn’t realize that the 6 pin PCIe connectors were actually 6+2 until a couple of days after I built it. Now I use the standard black cable that comes with the CX650 itself (although I do plan to buy white extension cables for the 24 pin and 8 pin connectors possibly within the next year).

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

Looks great, what were the steps you took to ensure that your case had RGB lighting? (People have told me that their RGB doesn't work on the case and get confused)

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

The rgb light strips on the front and side are embedded into the case. Even though you can sync them up with aura sync or mystic light, there are controls on the front of the pc that allow you to change the colors and modes. Since I have an ASRock motherboard, that’s what I do. I don’t know if I answered your question, so if I didn’t, you can tell me.

  • 14 months ago
  • 1 point

I was hoping to build a PC with very similar parts, and was wondering what kind of experience you had building in this case.