Hi all, this was my first time getting to handpick and build every part of my pc. Spent about a month watching Jayztwocents, Linus Tech Tips, OzTalksHW, and watching the price fluctuations here on PC Partpicker. Then bought everything over the course of 6 weeks, waiting till everything was on sale for as low a price as the items have ever been. All the reviewers said late 2018 was THE TIME to build so I feel I truly did maximize my performance per dollar value as far as possible.
I even produced a spreadsheet listing MSRP's along with the prices I actually got them for. NOTE* MSRP prices are PRE-TAX AND SHIPPING. ACQUIRED prices listed are INCLUDING TAX AND SHIPPING. So my actual savings are even higher.
BUILD COST MSRP(pre tax and shipping): $1,255
TOTAL SPENT TO BUILD: $890.25!
Ok, lets talk parts.
Ryzen 5 2600, msrp at time $200, acquired for $165. This was the perfect starting point. All the reviews basically told me that this was the point where you get diminishing returns on power and that is absolutely correct. From AMD, the 2600X is almost $100 more, and an i5 from Intel would have been double. I'm not gonna fanboy either side, at this point both companies are producing very high quality chips. Intel edges out AMD by a couple frames per second... worth double? hell no. Ry5 FTW.
I also spent $35 extra on ebay for a Wraith Prism cooler that comes with the Ryzen 7. It's better than the stock wraith that comes with the ryzen 5. its GORGEOUS with its lighting effects, and super easy to come by since most ryzen 7 users seem to be really overclock-happy and upgraded to an AIO.
Gigabyte B450 Pro wifi MOBO, msrp $140. acquired for $119. Wanted a 450 MOBO because I didn't want to have to flash a 350 with a gen-1 Ryzen processor. Wanted the Strix for looks, but settled on this for functionality. This board is fantastic, but since it is a B series it was built with limited overclocking potential. not a terrible thing, they gotta save SOMETHING for their X series. With Wifi and Realtek sound built in.
*My only gripe is the crap Aorus software. Going back, I wouldn't have gone with any RGB ecosystem for the MOBO. It keeps overriding my RAM RGB software and all of them apparently trip the anti-cheat programs in online games. I'd rather just deal with separate programs for my ram and cooler. Actually, you HAVE to use the cooler master software anyway to get the Wraith Prism's full functionality of the rgb ring + 2 LED zones. Lessons learned.
UPDATE: I deleted the Aorus app center and RGB Fusion software. Controlling the RGB through the BIOS you sacrifice speed adjustments on pulses and cycles, but now I don't have to end a task before logging into competitive games or deal with having my ram go mono-colored randomly during use. This is fine by me, much better than how it was.
PowerColor Red Devil RX580 8gb, msrp $265, ACQUIRED FOR $163 ON EBAY! Can you tell I'm really excited about this deal? All the reviewers say there is absolutely nothing wrong with buying real used cards on Ebay. Ebay buyer protection is superb so I bought with confidence. It arrived in the original packaging in fantastic condition, looked barely touched. This card sits right between a 1060 and a 1070 and at over $100 off, there was no question. Oh, and I hadn't even really heard of Powercolor, but after digging, they've been making AMD graphics cards for a looong time and the Red Devil series are their premium ones, the Red Dragon being the basics.
Ran Batman Arkham Origins benchmark on max settings (except for physX engine, thats nvidia only) and averaged 190 fps with a min of 120 Will be upgrading main monitor to a 2k 144 hertz around cyberweekend to get best deal. Even freesync monitors are less expensive than their g-sync counterparts. Another win for AMD.
Trident Z 3000 mhz 16gb RGB's, msrp $210, acquired for $182. Hands down the most attractive of the rgb ram dimms. Ryzen likes high memory clocks so I could get faster sticks. These have lower latency as their lower mhz counterparts as well so that's more win. 16gb has been plenty so far and if needed, there's space to move up to 32gb.
EVGA G2 750W 80+gold Full Modular, msrp $130, acquired for $66. A 750w gold power supply for $66? STEAL. I have more than enough headroom to never worry about overtaxing it, the full modular makes cable management and adding accessories a breeze, the G2 series is legit according to the reviews so I hit that buy button when I saw it for that low. I was having trouble finding even 650's at that price so I jumped.
Phanteks Eclipse P350x Case, not gonna list the msrp cause I only saved 10 bucks paying $65 for it but it's a gorgeous case, the price was amazing for a quality case with good cabling, ventilation, and tempered glass side. I love the subtle RGB strips in it. Beautiful.
NOTE* If I could go back and do anything different, I'd have gone with a micro-atx build. The micro cases have improved significantly in cable management, style, and airflow. I have almost too much space in this mid-tower. If it was smaller it would be better for transporting to LAN parties.
For storage I have a Silicone Power 256gb SSD $47 for my OS and a couple games that I play competitively. Then a 2tb WD Black enterprise drive I picked up refurb on newegg for $49 bucks that I use for my steam library. Will be expanding with a 500gb ssd (possibly 2 in raid) for games that I need to be faster. For most games, the traditional hard drive is just fine.
Lastly, you might have noticed the RGB graphics card stand, I found this person on etsy that makes custom computer accessories. I picked his Devil logo design, and had him add the 2 other graphics on the sides. He is very accommodating. Here's the link to the etsy page if you'd like to contact them for your own projects. https://www.etsy.com/shop/DreambigByRay
Nothing beats this processor price-per-value. Performs just under an i5 for half the price? No Brainer
my only complaints are with Aorus Fusion RGB software.
PvP games that use Easyanticheat software wont launch unless you endtask on the LED program running, which is stupid as hell, but apparently all the RGB boards have that issue. Also, Aorus Fusion keeps running over my trident z's program, which is also stupid since my ram will be color shifting beautifully then all of a sudden go mono red :/.
As far as actual functionality, its a great mobo with built in wifi and realtek soundcard, and built in IO shield.
UPDATE: so i did the sensible thing and deleted the aorus app center and rgb software. went to controling the rgb through the BIOS. super basic, but it works now. no more ending the SeLED task before logging into games, no more monocolored g.skill ram.
Got mine used on Ebay and gotta say, ZERO REGRETS. Came in almost new condition, sits right between a 1060 and a 1070 on Nvidia's side, and that price was insane. Buying all my videocards used on Ebay from now on.
Plenty of space, awesome cable management, well designed. What more could you want?
Fully-modular is definitely the way to go. All cables come wrapped in black covers so your build will stay looking good, use only what you need.