Description

This build started out by me expressing interest in building a PC, since my PS4 died in May and my PC at the time (and actually right now while I get the PSU problem sorted out) was an Intel Celeron N3150 with 4 GB of RAM. I got WELL over my money's worth out of it and while it was slow, it was super reliable. Anyways, my step-mom gave me her old PC build she literally hasn't used since 2013 because it kept giving her issues (PSU). Nobody knew what the issues were, but it wasn't a big deal since I was going to replace the CPU, Motherboard, RAM and hard drives out. What happened next was a nasty surprise though.

I successfully assembled my R5 2600, 16 GB of RAM and my GTX 460 SE (now a GTX 760 that can't be powered cause the PSU) and for a few hours it worked splendidly. No problems at all, running most of my games really well and above 30 fps. Then while I was raising the setting on one game, cause I thought there was more to give, I put it on medium settings. Literally 30 seconds later and it powered off out of nowhere, no blue screen, nothing. Now this was an issue that I was aware of and assumed it was the old system since it was quite beat up. I tried it again and about 10 minutes later it turned off AGAIN. I knew at that point then that something was up, either with my CPU installation (cause I'm a noob) or with my PSU.

So I took a shot in the dark and posted my System Status screen to a Discord server full of knowledgeable people, and they pointed out that the 12 V rail should NOT be at 11.080 and the 5 V rail should not be at 4.480 V. This instantly made me not want to use the PSU since undervolting can cause harm to IPCs and things of the sort. Most of them left to carry on adult conversations about computers, but one person stuck around just to "roast" my PSU for some reason, flexing about how good his PC was and whatever. They were muted by moderators almost instantly so yay.

Apart from the PSU, the build has gone very well, just gotta order a 550 W or so PSU so that I have 200 W of headroom to work with. Also a decent power supply would have 80+ Bronze minimum, if my old Acer had it, my new rig should too.

This should be a very good work computer for years, and I would use the GTX 460 SE just as long with no problems. Thing is that I'll be getting the budget for a new video card, so I'll be going for the RX 570 since it can be overclocked when say in the future it starts getting too slow to output 1080p 30 fps on games at the minimum settings (or when I move up to 4k and want just a few more frames to get it to playable levels)

UPDATE 11/17/2019: I got my EVGA B3 80+ Bronze 650 W PSU on the 15th but I hooked it up and nothing seemed to happen. I tested it with my three graphics cards (460 SE, 760 & HD 4850) and none of them did anything. I even reseated the CPU and RAM and that was also to no avail. I got so frustrated I was ready to throw the motherboard out of the window and reconsider my career choice, so I gave up and put it back in the PC case and NEVER TOUCH IT AGAIN.

TWO DAYS LATER

I was sitting in the living room, minding my own business, feeling the freedom from not having to worry about my super unreliable PC when I heard one of my fathers friends brothers is coming over and he is very good with computers. So I thought that maybe he could figure it out, so I went back to my computer and took the side panel off again, something I thought I would never do. I actually tried to do some cable management, plugged everything back up and waited for him to come. When he did, I realized that none of my stuff was out so I got that out. He took a look at the computer and noted that the CPU cooler was not installed very good (my fault since I was having issues with the Wraith Stealth cooler) and he tightened it so casually while smoking a cigarette that I've been impressed for the first time in a VERY long time with someone else's computer skills. Then after I told him that I undervolted the CPU to save the last PSU from exploding, he said that the BIOS was probably not letting the PC boot and he took out the coin cell from the mobo and put it back in. Of course when it turned on it worked perfectly fine, sans the Windows installation acting stupid. So we sat there for like 30 minutes trying to figure out what was causing the Windows installation to not work properly, and after he was fiddling with the settings for a while, he figured out the reason. It was because I had it set to LEGACY+UEFI despite the fact that I recently reinstalled Windows on my SSD and set it to work on UEFI since the Acer Aspire cannot boot into Legacy correctly. With all of this done, the PC was up and running perfectly fine and nothing was out of order (besides the RAM, but he insisted that the sticks go in beside each other despite the fact that the motherboard clearly states otherwise). I mean he did what I needed in 10 minutes that I could not do in 5 hours so I guess I can't complain at all.

I tested the GTX 760 in the system out of curiosity and it just doesn't work with my system. He said that the video card works with almost no computers and only on a few specific models. I thought that was strange and I put my GTX 460 SE back into the machine. I was plenty happy with that card so, no gain no loss. Currently I am installing all my games from the Epic Games Store and Steam and hope to be getting them to run WITHOUT CRASHING THE ENTIRE SYSTEM thanks to my fresh, new PSU.

11/19/2019: I am using the PC described in the parts list and in the pictures to make this update. So far it runs like a beast and handles literally everything I throw at it like it's a total joke. I plan for the old Acer to either become a Plex server or a NAS, but I won't be needing a NAS as my router has a USB port for that function. Thing is I don't need NAS so I'll just have a Plex server for my digitally downloaded movies and shows. I have a few more pictures up now on the page and you can clearly see that my cable management skills are 10/10 and it would make Linus tremble in his boots (if he was having a seizure, which in that case he would be trembling anyways no matter what I do). It's not beautiful, but I think it looks good and it's already made productivity tasks and not so productive tasks a lot easier to do in my day-to-day life. Well worth the $432 I spent on it and an extra $150-ish I will spend for a new video card.

1/18/2020: Several days ago I bought and installed the GeForce GTX 1650 Super into my system and so far I've been really happy with it! I think considering the games that I play and the resolution of my monitor, anything more powerful would have been overkill and honestly right now I don't need it. People concerned with my build not being "future-proof" don't need to worry, as that is why I got into building PCs in the first place. If a part becomes too slow for your uses, then just upgrade it. I know I couldn't do so much as upgrade the RAM in my last system cause Acer is terrible, but here it's only 10 seconds and a side panel away.

Part Reviews

CPU

Ultra fast and runs everything beautifully. Moving up to this from an Intel Celeron is like moving up from a Model T to a Lamborghini.

Running at 3.85 GHz with no issues, but it does like to get up to 70 Celsius playing games like CS:GO. I suppose that just comes with the territory.

Thermal Compound

Really good thermal paste that I used on the i3-2100 that I used while my parts came in. Kept it running at max 60 Celsius under clocked to 2.1 GHz with a busted stock cooler. Only 4 stars because I'm not sure if it could have ran cooler with more expensive compound.

Also am using it on my Ryzen 5 2600 and it keeps it under 70 Celsius 99% of the time, even doing demanding tasks. I did only rate this 4 stars, because I'm pretty sure the stock Ryzen thermal paste would have been the same in terms of thermal performance, but I have it overclocked to 3.85 GHz and it's not running much hotter than it normally would stock.

Motherboard

Very solid motherboard, I accidentally scratched it with my screwdriver while installing the cooler, but it still worked just fine like nothing happened. Guess those extra layers of PCB protection came in handy after all. Also really like the steel PCIe slot along with the metal VRMs.

Memory

I'm not quite sure if this is Samsung B-Die RAM, but setting the XMP profile to CL16 16-18-18-36 and 3200 MHz was no problem and ran completely fine.

Storage

THIS is one of my favorite parts of the entire build. Also my first SSD and holy crap does it make a difference. It used to take a few minutes for Windows to load and for Steam to check for updates, but with this it's instantaneous. Completely worth the $20 or so I spent and then some.

Storage

This is the hard drive that came out of my previous computer, an AIO Acer Aspire with the dreaded Intel Celeron in it. It works fine as program and miscellaneous storage and isn't as slow as the Western Digital. Also isn't as big, both in physical size and in terms of memory space.

Storage

It's storage, quite old storage actually. The hard drive came out of my old Acer Aspire desktop from 2012 that had the pretty awful AMD E-450. It still works perfectly fine to this day, though it can be slow at time seeing as this is 5400 RPM. Working as game storage atm

For a free hard drive, it's pretty good.

Video Card

So far this card has been the destroyer of all things 1080p, even Ultra. Dirt: Rally runs at around 66 FPS at max settings, but with some stuttering. I assume this to be a VRAM issue, but nothing horrible. For the games that I play and the things that I do with my computer, this is mega overkill but very nice to have. It is especially nice because there is a built in HDMI port as well as a DisplayPort and even DVI in case you need that.

Overall, I'm more than happy with my purchase and I'm glad Nvidia released a modern competitor to the RX 580.

Case

Wonderful case imho. This has the older styling that a lot of people on this website may not like, or even despise but I think it's still good looking if you keep it clean. It has space for two disk readers, a card reader and even a floppy drive if I really want to do that. The card reader would be handy as I tend to have multiple cards plugged into my computer at any given time. Very sturdy case, feels premium.

Power Supply

So far, so good. The 12 V rail was a bit high, but eh. I'm going to guess that's because of the 500 MHz overclock that I got to my chip. It's also fully-modular so that means that cable management was SO MUCH EASIER. Well worth the $95 I spent (I know I overpaid, but one-day shipping was pretty nice).

Optical Drive

It's a DVD Writer. It plays DVDs. That's all I have to say here.

Operating System

While I do not like how Windows 10 likes to throw updates in your face and make it even necessary to upgrade, it's convenient. I have installed Linux before and used it, but I would always have some issue and wind up using Windows again. It just works most of the time.

Keyboard

Solid keyboard, been using it since Christmas of 2014 and do not intend to upgrade anytime soon. It has a good amount of travel so it is comfortable to type on and I don't need to have a mechanical keyboard (but if I can find one for a good price, you better believe I will jump on it). Still it works great even if the keys like to stick once in a while.

Mouse

This mouse is a lot bigger than my last one and is a lot to get used to but after a few hours with it, I can say that it is SO MUCH more comfortable than my last one along with the sweet RGB on it being a really nice added feature that is common yet nice to see. Never thought I would be saying that, but it's not garish so it looks nice. I usually keep mine around 3200 DPI and only use the 1200 DPI toggle button when I need to do something precise.

Custom

This holds literally every single digital file that I have ever created on it, photos, videos and all of the sort. I have it all backed up into Google Photos and the cloud in case it fails, but seeing how it's Western Digital and my very positive experiences with the brand, I don't think it will anytime soon.

Custom

These headphones work perfectly fine, but they are a bit tight on my head. If they were a little bit bigger I would have rated them 5 stars, but I mean it was $20 so I can't complain too much. The sound is surprisingly rich and clear and if you have a smaller head or kids, I would recommend this if you don't need a mic.

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