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Build

The Minecrafters (MeanGreen) and (BlueIce)

by GoreSpiller

131
86 Comments

Details

Date Built

March 1, 2014

CPU Clock Rate

3.8GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

28.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

37.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

730MHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

1.8GHz

Description

After trying to play multiplayer Minecraft, Terraria, and Starbound with my sons on their aging computers, I decided new machines were in order. I had a very strict budget, so I set out to get the most performance I could get for around $500 including the OS. The boys are 7 and 8, so the games they play would run perfect on 720p resolutions. I was pleasantly surprised by the performance I was able to get with this build. Of course they wanted machines like mine which runs at 5760x1080 on three 23" IPS LED panels, but that wasn't in the cards for my dudes. Let's break this build down!

Processor: For a $59.99 quad-core, I can't complain much. I know people will say it isn't the best processor for gaming, but for what they play, it's plenty fast!

CPU Cooler: This tiny beast is the lil' bro to my EVO 212. It keeps this hot headed CPU at about 28-30°C on idle. I haven't really pushed it with very demanding games to see how hot it gets yet. Club Penguin just isn't that demanding folks! The hottest I have seen so far is 37°C while playing the games listed at the top.

Motherboard: This is where I slipped up! When I was checking out boards, I forgot to click the option for onboard USB 3 header! SO, I ended up with this board. The layout on it is nice, high speed RAM and SATA 3Gbps & 6Gbps. I should have went with the MSI 760GMA-P34(FX)!

Memory: For budget purposes, I split the RAM between the two machines. I will add another kit later. I liked the low clearance of this RAM, as that allowed it to fit perfectly below the CPU cooler.

Storage: I wanted the machines to have dual drives for quick boot time with the SSD and a quality HDD for their Steam catalogs.

Video Card: I wanted something that didn't require much power and could push the games they play very, very well. This little baby does the trick! I believe there are two different models of this card though. The one I have selected through this site, is not the one I purchased. The one I purchased has the model#11216-00-20G. The card listed on this site has model#100369-2GL. I searched on the web and the difference seems to be in the PCIe. The 2GL says PCIe Gen 3, while the 20G says PCIex16 Gen 3. These cards also have a price difference of about $30.

Case: I love this case! It has a ton of room inside to make a really powerful single card rig. Of course for my purpose it was more than adequate. But if you want a micro ATX case you can go wild with, this is your beast. It can handle a ton of fans, large CPU Coolers, water cooling, long graphics cards, and a lot of drives! I also liked the look of the case and how sturdy it feels.

Case fans: The case came with two preinstalled 120mm fans to which I added a blue fan to one and a green fan to the other. The boys loved that I made their machines their favorite colors.

Power supply: Nothing too exciting about the power supply. I wanted a modular one since I wasn't installing to many things in the case and didn't want a nest of unused wires laying around! I like the reputation of Corsair, so I got this one. It will also have plenty of headroom for a graphics card upgrade in the future if that is needed.

Well, that's the build! Nothing too fancy, just some nice, clean little machines for my boys. I already had a few LCD monitors, keyboards and mice, so that saved me quite a bit on the builds. I don't own any benchmarking software, so I can't tell you what it scores. Minecraft at the settings pictured above ran at 174-180FPS. If I max out all of the sliders, it runs at 65FPS. Path of Exile runs at 180FPS. I don't know what Terraria and Starbound run at, but they don't lag at all! These numbers are running on a 19" Samsung SyncMaster at 1280x1024. At 1080P these numbers would decrease I am sure.

Let me know what you guys think!

5-20-14: Added Steelseries Diablo 3 mouse to help kids play D3, POE and Marvel Heroes much easier! This is a great mouse and the price was too good to pass on. I got one for $25. 99 and the other for $5.99 after using rebates from PSU and case.

Comments Sorted by:

jai127 76 points 18 months ago

Adopt me pls.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 21 points 18 months ago

LOL

ProxYang 4 points 7 months ago

Me too, pl0x.

AIien_Ant_Farm 1 Build 10 points 18 months ago

Great builds. I like those cases a lot . People who play minecraft need to realize they don't need 780s to play they just need a simple cheap card like what you have. Love the extra touch of an ssd, made the build for me. +1

Uehm 1 Build 8 points 18 months ago

Pssh, you obviously need quad titans in order to play minecraft these days! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Uguebq5EEQ). :p

YourLocalPCNoob 1 Build 4 points 18 months ago

Definitely dont wanna run shaders on minecraft with a GT

mrluckypants96 3 Builds 2 points 13 months ago

I can confirm this. My GT640 runs MC maxed out (plus the extra graphics stuff from Optifine) with SEUS Shaders at about 20fps. To add to that, running MC with shaders was the only time my GPU's fan kicked up to full speed (think "miniature helicopter"). Seriously, far more intensive games run fine, but Minecraft with Shaders causes my GPU to massively heat up... Makes sense, right?

swimmer1929 2 points 13 months ago

The reason being is that shaders for minecraft are made by the community and almost always not optimized very well.

Juanathon 4 points 9 months ago

dude my 200 way SLI 980s can only run Minecraft at .0001FPS with a render distance of 1 block and vsync off

samonsite 2 points 18 months ago

They're not going to know the difference between a $40 and $700 graphics card. lol.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Thanks!

Str8jakt 7 points 18 months ago

Father of the year award goes to!

GuessWhat 1 Build 5 points 18 months ago

Oww, you got some pretty good deals there. :D

Really like that you got an SSD even on a tight budget. The cable management is also really good. Everything looks super clean.

As you mentioned, you should have went with the MSI 760GMA P34 but that's not a big deal. You also have 2 USB 3.0 on your motherboard and you have plenty of space to access the back of the PC

Those names are great and I really like the two different LED fans. I'm sure it made a huge difference and now your kids know which computer's which. :D

Damn.. I wish I had a dad like you. =/

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Thanks! Glad you liked the builds.

Coroff 4 points 18 months ago

Have you considered dual-booting Windows with Ubuntu (Linux)? Minecraft runs on Java, so it's compatible with Linux, Windows and OSX. Ubuntu gets considerably higher frame rates than Windows can ever dream of.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 4 points 18 months ago

No, since the machines are for 7 & 8 year old boys. I don't need any thing complicated for them and have personally never been a fan of Linux.

Microshrimp 1 Build -3 points 18 months ago

If you ever change your mind, Ubuntu is one of the most user-friendly versions out there. Ubuntu even makes it easy to try out Ubuntu on any computer without affecting the rest of the system if you want to preview what it's like. If you download it and load it onto a DVD or USB drive and then boot off that media, it will give two options, "Install Ubuntu" or "Try Ubuntu." Selecting "Try Ubuntu" will do a temporary installation, but won't affect your Windows installation, and once you restart the computer, Ubuntu goes away like it was never there.

Full disclosure: In my personal experience, there are still some things that are tricky even in Ubuntu depending on if you're trying to do something that isn't readily set up already. For example, some of the AMD grahics card drivers that come pre-installed may or may not be as good as the actual ones made by AMD, and trying to install the AMD drivers may or may not be as easy as it is in Windows, depending on your specific hardware.

leftyrojas430 1 Build 3 points 18 months ago

THIS...IS...AWESOME!!! What a great dad, I wish my dad is a computer type of person (I'm 14). I just ordered my parts. When you were thinking about the parts, did you think about a hybrid drive?

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 3 points 18 months ago

No, I like the idea of separate drives. If one fails the entire system isn't sunk this way.

Kartexa 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

I see 174 fps, you might as well be running MC at 1080p with 2gb of vram and considering my friend ran MC perfectly fine at 1080p on a GT620, yeah you prbably can too.

nightbirddesigns 2 Builds 2 points 18 months ago

My buddy in the office is the same way, keeping his son involved in his hobby and making sure the little guy actually enjoys his own pc and understands some of the tech as well. May not seem like much to some, but my father couldn't have cared less and certainly wouldn't have put this much effort and consideration in something like this.

They are great purpose built systems, especially for the money spent and especially considering they can grow with your boys.

You're a good dad.

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GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Thanks for the kind words! I wanted to build something for them that removed the frustration factor and could take a few upgrades down the road.

zabb74 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Where'd you get the CPUs? You got a great deal when compared with current prices.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

I bought them at Microcenter. I dont know how they sell them so cheap, but it was worth the 30min drive to grab them!

Aaron2096 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Sweet builds, hope you guys enjoy them.

talby 9 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

+1 awesome builds, my kids usually get my leftovers :) I did upgrade my yougest kid's pc recently and after a good review of what he runs decided the i3 was the way to go.

Since I work about 20mins away from a Microcenter, if I had to build from scratch I probably would have went with something like this.

cheers!

Akut 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

Taking a peek at "this", I couldn't justify the i3. Would be good enough for minecraft, yes. But the 4130 has two more cores at a cheaper price.

If you only have the budget for an i3, do yourself a favor and get a matching price FX proc. Performance to dollar is just higher.

talby 9 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

in all honesty, the i3 rocks for what my son uses it for, and he plays a lot more than just minecraft. He will start up a standalone multiplayer gmod server as well as his client to join in, has had over 20 players, never any lag. No regrets on that i3 at all, at least in my case (or my son's case)

Akut 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Try pushing a AAA title on an i3. Just saying if you're going best bang for buck, an FX is usually better. An i3 is still faster in a few ways compared to FX chips, so they do have their uses.

talby 9 Builds 3 points 18 months ago

In BF4 multiplayer the i3-4340 actually beats the fx-6300 and the fx-8350. Sure you can OC the FX, but then the cooler and VRM mobo required kind of hurts the cost benefit to do so.

I am sure there are a few titles that have multicore-win hands down, but it's a pretty short list...

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 3 points 18 months ago

I also started a build with an i3 but decided that for the price, I wasn't getting a very good return. I went with AMD over the i3 for a number of reasons. First the price, I knew I could build a decent setup for the cost of an i3 on its own. For the $130 of a dual core, I was able to buy the CPU, graphics card and the CPU cooler. Second it's a quad core that can be overclocked very easily if needed. Also since my boys are 7-8, by the time they are allowed to play the games you listed (when they are old enough to drive), I will have probably built them new machines that are way more capable than this build. I liked the speed of the i3, but for the price of what AMD is offering, I went that route. At 130 for a CPU alone, I didn't really consider that a "budget" build.

Akut 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Right now, the number of titles that support multiple cores (more than 4) is small. But since the next gen consoles are running a modified Bulldozer (codenamed Jaguar) 8 core CPU, the number of titles that will support all 8 cores will come, possibly making the current i5 4XXX series obsolete. I think within a year we will start seeing more FX processors (or maybe a whole new architecture... anytime now AMD...). I think there will be a time where cores will be more important than clock speed, compared to right now, where if you have a wicked dual core, it can still run everything.

Baaaaaack to minecraft.... :D

xBlood_Monkey 10 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

Did you ever consider going the route of the APU?

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

I did toy around with an APU build originally, but the cost of the A10-7850k just wasn't an option. I wanted max performance on a budget, and at $180 for it, I was basically able to buy more performance with a CPU/GPU combo. I like what AMD is doing with the new chips, but for scalability, your best bet is CPU+GPU seperately. I didn't want the headache of trying to do dual graphics down the road either.

xBlood_Monkey 10 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

What about the A10-5800K at $110? Also, you don't have to do dual-graphics later on. You can just disable the on-board graphics and pop in any video card of your choosing.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Going for any APU build in my opinion is a waste of money. Why spend the extra money for the integrated graphics when a seperate card will always perform better? That APU is more than what I paid for CPU and GPU, and I'm hitting 170+FPS. Even if you disable the onboard, you essentially wasted money on a feature you don't need. I would rather save a little more money and look at better parts than settle for an APU. Another con on that route is the need for faster RAM as well to make good use of the onboard graphics. Do a search on RAM speeds needed for APU's and you will soon see how this isn't a very cost effective build.

xBlood_Monkey 10 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

A dedicated card won't always perform better. Also, yup, definitely more expensive.

Have you thought about what you're going to do with the R7 240's when your kids need more horsepower? Sure you can throw in (almost) any new video card, but then you'll have those two cards just laying around. Now that sounds like a waste of money.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Well bud, on your list you left out a CPU cooler and a graphics card to get you to the 170+ FPS I am able to achieve with my build. I will give you kudos for trying though! But hey man, if that's the build for you, go for it! Everyone has different needs when it comes time to build their systems. Oh and I can always sell the cards, and considering how much less I paid than what most sites are asking, even $20-30 bucks each wouldn't be bad! I'd like to see you uncouple your GPU and sell it. Have a good day.

username22 1 point 16 months ago

GPU is on the low end spectrum, but Minecraft works well with almost anything, even intergrated graphics. This is a decent PC at the price point.

biobasher 1 point 16 months ago

Amazing build for the budget, it leaves room to upgrade to a FX6300+ and change out the gpu later on down the line! I will state this though, if you went for the SSD to be a BOOT drive, you could have saved money by going for a 30/32gb SSD as the OS only takes 20gb (partition)

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

I don't really see how a 30-32gb SSD is of any real value. They are $39+, and I was able to buy a 60gb for $49. Double the space for an additional $10 seemed like a no brainer for me! Saving $10 dollars just isn't worth it.

biobasher 1 point 16 months ago

Well, besides it being a time saver when booting the OS there isnt much use for it.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 2 points 16 months ago

Except for the additional space maybe? I guess I am missing the point of saving $10 and getting half the gigs. Plus the few games they play regularly are installed on the SSD. But if saving money is more important, go for it! I personally would and did spend the extra few bucks.

Kacper_Kosowski 1 point 16 months ago

Gorespiller do never put computers on carpet. The power supply will struggle for air.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 14 months ago

They were only on carpet for pictures. They are raised off the carpet, lol.

ImYourChrist 1 point 16 months ago

Wish i had a father like you are.

Lia642on01 1 point 16 months ago

Good two smaller build and the blue seems to be more visible then the green, anyway enjoy your builds :) +1

Pit 1 point 12 months ago

I just want to say that this was really cute :)

Architor 1 Build 1 point 11 months ago

Love the build! I've been thinking I need something similar for my kiddos.

NovicePCBuild 1 point 11 months ago

The PC I have can play minecraft on the lowest settings and can dip to 30 fps

LAWolves 1 point 10 months ago

Good budget builds, good games, good result. The fact these are "twin" builds help eliminate any disparity between the two children which is good parenting. Good Job!

Variable.variables 1 point 10 months ago

How quiet are the case fans (the CoolerMaster one)? Nice budget build!

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 10 months ago

The case fans are extremely quiet. The only fan that is noticeable is the CPU cooler fan for the most part.

Variable.variables 1 point 10 months ago

Alright. I may go with these fans then. Is there any way to control the speed? (3PIN or 4PIN?)

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 10 months ago

I believe they are 3 pin, mother board controls speed. They will be noticeable at full speed for sure.

Variable.variables 1 point 10 months ago

Can you control the speed through the BIOS? What do you mean by "noticeable?"

Brodzster 1 point 10 months ago

I personally wouldve gone with a APU and crossfired it with the 240. But anyways we all have a opinion and yours turned out to be a good one

Jc83 1 point 9 months ago

Would you recommend this case to a beginner?

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 3 points 9 months ago

Yes, very nice case!

BigMacGames 1 point 9 months ago

Club penguin XD

ThatComputerEnthusiast 1 point 8 months ago

-1 & +1 Nice awesome choice on all hardware, but I would've taken an i5 or something Intel

I've heard the R7 240 is a piece of junk. I really think you should've went for a better GPU. If you are gaming, at least go for a GTX 750 or higher. For my rig i went with the R9 270X

Everything else though is pretty nice. Cheers

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

The card plays every game they have just fine. The cost of a 750 would have added an additional $110 per PC. Sure it would add more performance, but they boys arent playing games that require it. At their ages they play Lego games, Minecraft and stuff. I had a budget of $500-550 including OS and the machines run well for the money I spent. An i5 was not in the budget, hard to beat a $60 quad core. They both have 1080p monitors now and all games they play run perfectly at that res.

ThatComputerEnthusiast 1 point 8 months ago

Thanks for your feedback. Check out this build I'm building:

http://pcpartpicker.com/user/ThatComputerEnthusiast/saved/czLfrH

It just so happens that my uncle works at Intel and the i7 got a 50% discount. Hope you like it

RogyAcnodnem 1 point 8 months ago

man you are lucky i mean 170 for an i7? but you should consider a better gpu like a 280 290 or even a 760

ThatComputerEnthusiast 1 point 8 months ago

Budget :P Lol

rajmahual 1 point 5 months ago

Can I buy an i7 from Ya..I'll pay 200 :D

UltraBuilds 1 point 7 months ago

Wouldn't have at all fit in your budget, but Intel's Iris interigated graphics are looking pretty good. I don't think anyone should make a build with it, not worth what it will cost. It's mostly for companies trying to make pcs the size of a Roku.

jay227ify 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

How loud is the cooler?

SpecificAlduin 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

just get an adaptor for usb 3.0 to usb 2.0 headers. problem solved.

SpecificAlduin 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

If you want to be able to use USB 3 connectivity, get a USB 3 to USB 2 header adaptor. It will make the port function, but not as fast as USB 3 can go.

A_Person109 1 point 3 months ago

This build is really cool, I even might adopt (HINT, HINT) some parts from this. Srsly.

therevenga 1 point 2 months ago

try running minecraft with 6gb of ram thats what i do with my pc (i have 8gb) fps seems to go up!

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 2 months ago

Both machines have 8gb ram now. They are running great!

therevenga 1 point 1 month ago

Great thats awesome news!!!

leftyrojas430 1 Build 0 points 18 months ago

Hehe. I like that windows score (6.9).

DragonFireXY 1 point 13 months ago

...

ThatComputerEnthusiast 1 point 8 months ago

LOL

Ninjadudewhat 1 Build 0 points 15 months ago

hmm... I may ask my own dad for a new computer... oh wait, i did. Annoyingly I have to have much better stuffs coz i edit & render & stuff. ;( cool build though :-)

Bando 3 Builds 0 points 14 months ago

Can I just state a word of warning. In future do not put your motherboard on the outside of the anti-static bag. It's only antistatic on the inside they are conductive on the outside.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 2 points 14 months ago

I had it on a piece of pink foam that was on top of the bag.

mathieubel -1 points 18 months ago

Good build but you are waisting the RAM right now since it's made to be running together. It's a 8gb not 2x4gb. And, when you'll get another 8gb dont forget to put in the same machine and get the older 8gb together.

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

I am planning on getting another kit once the PC fund has a little more coin in it. Then I will pair back up the original chips! Had a budget to stick to and didn't want to buy single channel knowing I would do that later.

Akut 1 Build 2 points 18 months ago

Single channel ram isn't a huge deal. Most you will see is a lag spike more often than with dual channel ram (literally a negletable amount)

4GB is enough to run Minecraft, and dare I say that the graphics card is overkill. These computers have the balls to run AAA titles on low/med @720p.

I think you have exceeded expectations. :P

GoreSpiller submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Glad you liked it! I was just concerned when I saw that Minecraft used practically all 4 megs! Might be able to max draw distance with 8. The boys won't notice, but I will. They are just so excited that these don't overheat and shut down like their old ones.

Akut 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Minecraft takes close to 2.2GB memory at max draw distance with no mods/texture packs. Add in your OS and startup stuff and browser tabs, those 4GBs are long gone. 8GB would run minecraft flawlessly and smooth out AAA titles.

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EpicGrass -5 points 17 months ago

The r7-240 is a really low end card, it would've been better of you spent a little more and got a radeon 7770 or a r7-250. You would also get a lot more preformance.

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