Description

A friend of mine (an avid console gamer) wanted to dabble in PC gaming. Being a good friend, I decided to assist him with what parts he should go with and how they would affect his build. He gave me a budget, which was $800 USD, and I compiled a list of parts to achieve his desired performance goals. However, like everyone who dabbles in PC building in the beginning, he got a bit carried away over other, pricier parts that "looked cool". I donated the AIO, power supply, Halo Lux, and RGB fans to help him keep his costs down.

After all was said and done, his build was just that. His. This ended up so far off the drawing board of where I had drew it up to be. Truth be told we did leave some money on the table with the parts he chose. All in all, it still accomplishes the performance he was looking for and as all of us here can relate, there's something special about the things you personally create. Especially if it works extremely well.

P.s. Please forgive the cable management. He means well.

Part Reviews

CPU

At the time of his build, I informed him that he may want to hold off to see what Zen 2 could offer. Patience is not his strong suit so I recommended that he go with the Ryzen 5 2600, which was the best budget cpu for its price. A deal at micro center that also gave a 30 dollar discount to his mobo changed all that and he settled with the 2700. Currently sitting at 4.1 Ghz all core at 1.38v, I was pleasantly surprised that it never went over 75 C under full load. Almost certain we can thank the H100i v2 for this. This monster can handle everything he throws at it.

Motherboard

I strongly advised against this motherboard as it was brand new on the market and had very little information about its performance. I wanted to go with the Asrock Steel Legend, but my friend wanted to take advantage of the Micro Center deal and they had limited options. Two birds with one stone, right? Wrong. Because of a small reading error on my part, I didn't realize that the board only supports RAM up to 2933 Mhz. After researching so many boards I assumed this one would be 3200 Mhz like the others I was comparing it to. This is the most disappointing portion of the build for me, but so far the board has held up fairly nicely. The BIOS isn't half bad either, although my experience and our choice of CPU played a huge part in that so take that with a grain of salt.

Memory

It works and it's pretty. Need I say more? Didn't touch the timings so if your looking for insight here, I apologize. To this day, I'm still sad about the 2933 Mhz. I just want his RAM to live its best life. :(

Storage

Corsair seems like a common theme for this build, and there's a good reason for that. The MP510 is a prime example. Blazing fast read/writes speeds, which is extrapolated by the fact of my friend coming from an old HDD on his laptop. One of the best TBW on the market, and gives Samsung drives a run for their money. Windows cold boots in about 8 secs flat. Bravo.

Video Card

I advised my friend to get the Ventus verison of this card, believing the cards were similar. Holy cow was I wrong. I knew this thing was good for 1080p but I didn't really know how good until I saw it in person. This thing is an absolute beast and my favorite part of this build. It boosts its self up to 2100 Mhz with ease and can maintain that clock without ever breaking a sweat. This means solid performance with very little noise, making a quieter system. Very impressive GPU.

Case

I advised my friend that a case with good airflow is always a plus, and the first case I mention to him he immediately fell in love with and ordered it without a second thought. Cant say I blame him though. Easy to build in and good cable management.

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Comments

  • 5 months ago
  • 1 point

When you were reviewing your mobo, did you have to specifically switch to 2933 as the highest option of ram, or could you go 3000mhz or 2666?

  • 5 months ago
  • 1 point

I tried to set it to 3200 from the get go, but windows would crash on start up and in bios the ram would reset to non xmp default profile. After re checking compatibility, I noticed the speed cap for the mobo which was 2933. I tried oc'ing and messing with the timings to push past 2933 but to no avail. I just set it to 2933 and kept default timings since my friend wouldn't really know the difference. Edited for clarity.

  • 5 months ago
  • 1 point

did you have 2666mhz and you oc'd to 2933? thanks for replying too!

  • 5 months ago
  • 1 point

No sir, I flipped the XMP on after a successful post and I noticed the RAM would set as 2933 mhz. Knowing i have 3200 mhz RAM installed, I tinkered around until i realized that 2933 is the max supported speed on the mobo.

  • 3 months ago
  • 1 point

Is the MSI card much better than the Ventus one? I’m trying to figure out if it’s worth $30-40 more

  • 3 months ago
  • 2 points

Performance wise? they are very similar. If you are only thinking of price to performance ratio, the Ventus card is a better value. What you are paying for on the Gaming X is acoustics and aesthetics. The heat sink on the Gaming X is better making for a quieter system with a conservative GPU fan curve. There is also the rgb implementation which I think looks pretty legit. I suppose its up to you to determine if that's worth 40 dollars.

  • 2 months ago
  • 1 point

Was the case USB 3 cable long enough to reach the header on the motherboard?

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Yep! I dont remember having trouble with this at all.