This is a little Craigslist build that I did for my little brother's 11th birthday. He has been gaming on a base model HP laptop with an AMD APU in it. He was getting about 12 FPS on unturned with lowest settings. He's been dying for an upgrade. Now he gets almost 60 on medium settings!
So, I got the motherboard, CPU, RAM, and GPU as a package deal from some kid off Craigslist. I got him down to $120, which means $30 for each piece. I think that I got a pretty good deal! I also got a junk case with the deal, which was trashed. The CD drive was thrown in as well, but those are dirt cheap anyway. Everything was super dusty, but there does not seem to be anything wrong with the hardware, other than the missing SATA on the MB, but it all works well and is pretty fast on the SSD. Also, the Fractal Focus G mini is a pretty cool little case! It's a budget case sure, but it has a lot of room behind the MB and quality materials. The HDD light is stupid bright, so this will likely be his night light. The case is filtered everywhere which was a must for him. And he also needed a CD drive because a lot of his older games are on disc. I wish the case came in other colors, but the RGB kit makes up for it.
This is my first AMD build, so I don't know much about the processor. But 6 "cores" should be good for my bro for a while. The Hyper 212 keeps it super cold, at least in my basement. Even on RealBench, the CPU never got over 50C. I thought AMDs were hot? The HD 6970 GPU is strange, I guess because I am used to GeForce stuff. It uses a ridiculous amount of power to accomplish something about on par with a GTX 1050(?) It puts out some heat too, hence the name. And it sagged something awful, so I made a little black lego brace for it. It sits on top of the drive cage and holds the end of the GPU so the card is level. Looks a lot better.
Wish the cable management was better, but what can you do with a non-modular PSU? I did my best and I think it looks okay. Either way, my bro will love it. Also, the "fan controlling" on the motherboard has to be a joke. All the case fans are basically maxed out all the time. The CPU fan changes some, but not a lot. I don't think he will mind the noise but I can always get a fan controller for the other 5.25 bay.
Not much else to say, but I think it will last him a couple years. Maybe Santa will bring him a 1050Ti or his older brother's 1060? Who knows. He does not have the best track record when it comes to taking care of things, so I would rather he destroy this before I get him a 1050 or something. I would also like to get a modular PSU of course. But we will see how he treats it.
Hope y'all enjoy! Let me know what you think and ask any questions you have. NOTE: anything listed as $0 I already had in my junkyard. Prices in USD.
Works great and will for years. Kinda ugly, but performance makes up for it.
BIOS sucks. Fan "control" sucks. But it was cheap and works. I am just spoiled by my Asus UEFI.
For the price, this thing is sweet. It's small, but not too small. It's built well and has captive thumbscrews too! Cable management space is great, thanks to the bump out back panel, and the included fans are pretty quiet. The only real issue I have is the stupid bright HDD light, but that's as simple as unplugging it.
Windows 10 is here to stay, might as well learn to like it. I think it's pretty good, but Windows wouldn't be Windows without strange issues here and there. Somehow, it activated itself on my secondhand motherboard! No complaints there.
Loud. Both in air noise, and motor noise. I took these out of my personal build because it drove me nuts. But the lights are pretty.