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First ever gaming build (updated)
by bkherring
Permalink:   (72 comments)
Description

This all started because my 8 year old son wanted to play minecraft on PC instead of Xbox. We only have laptops and Ipads around here so I threw around the idea of building a desktop for months. I'm OCD as all get out so after doing some research I got kinda obsessed. An idea turned into 20 solid hours of internet research and shopping around. Even remodeled his room to accommodate a better setup. I can't believe how well it went. The only problem I had was with the freezer pro CPU cooler. After installing the 2nd round of RAM I kept getting an error that the CPU fan was not responding. After about an hour of researching I actually got in there (should have in the first place) and noticed that the fan its self was hitting the RAM housing. You will see a ton of people posting that it will not work because of the plastic casing on the RAM. That is incorrect with my setup, you just have to be a little innovative. The plastic guard over the CPU fan has two sets of rubber things (not sure what to call them). One holds the guard in place and one is actually like a rubber band that pulls the guard closer to the heat sink. I pulled the band ones off and set the guard in between my RAM sticks. There is no pressure on the sticks FYI. By taking the bands off it just sits perfectly and allowed the fan to fall back closer to the heat sink. Works like a charm and does not hit the sticks. I even zipped tied the guard to the case just to make sure it doesn't move back.

I had a blast building this and even built my ex-wife one for our son at her house. This PC stuff is highly addictive lol! I am currently tweaking my OC on the CPU and video card. That Asus 770 is bad mama jamma too. Runs quiet and under full load hasn't broke 62 degrees yet. I used to be a huge FFXI fan and am waiting for XIV to come out now. So far I have cranked out a 8000 ish benchmark on the FF benchmark test with mild OC.

I'd love to get some feedback and all questions are welcome. This site is a life saver and makes building a lot easier!

** UPDATED***

After some good advice from this forum I pretty much rebuilt the whole thing again lol. Added the H100I, FC3 fan controller, ambient lighting, plexi glass window, white power extensions, and reconfigured fan set up. Everything is set to intake except the push/pull setup for H100I. It was a very tight fit but worked. My temps are a lot more stable now and the PC it's self looks a lot better. The before pics end at the stock fans at top of case. The after begins after it.

Part List
Details
Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Clock Rate4.2GHz
CPU Temperature While Idle30.0° C
CPU Temperature Under Load74.0° C
Asus GeForce GTX 770 2GB DirectCU II Video Card
GPU Core Clock Rate1.2GHz
GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate7.01Ghz
GPU Temperature While Idle32.0° C
GPU Temperature Under Load62.0° C
3DMark 11 Benchmark Results
Extreme Preset ScoreX7448
Comments
When commenting on a completed build please keep your feedback polite and constructive, particularly if commenting on part choices and possible alternatives.
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BeardCreep 3 points 13 months ago

clever with the wooden bit under the rig.

upvote for the rig, and for that.

though, the power supply seems a bit overpowered and maybe the next time you can get a 212 EVO instead of that cooler (its the best value for money)

EDIT:

forgot to say great cable management.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 2 points 13 months ago

Lol I forgot about the shelve. I still gotta stain that thing. My original plan was to use that plus one just like it on top (with cutouts and speaker cloth for ventilation). It would have been frame in with slotted angle and then I was going to use stainless steal braided cable and run 4 or 5 cables horizontally. Thus keeping good ventilation and protecting the PC from my son and his ADHD lol (he tends to flop around a lot). The cost wasn't worth it though so I just got rid of entertainment center, hung the 42" on the wall and got the monitor with swing arm so he can just lay in bed with monitor right in his face.

I went with the 850 so I could possibly SLI the GTX 770 in the future. I had the same version but the 660 originally. I was pushin the wattage (I was going to go with the 660 TI boost SLI and sent it back for the 770) so I put the 660 in my ex's PC and got me the 850.

Thanks for the comments man. That's awesome that you noticed the wood thing lol. I wanted it low to the ground so it will suck in cooler air.

 
 
BeardCreep 2 points 13 months ago

yeah it was very clever. does it get clearance between the wood and the case? idk why it looks like it doesnt

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I posted some new pics to give you more of an idea of what I did. The only clearance it has is the rubber feet. So far its staying cool and no dust build up on screens. I see that a lot of people take them out but I want to see how much dust they collect. I have that tiny red fan sitting by the AC duct to blow just a little bit of cool air towards the side fan. My sons other computer is running 25 degrees for MB and CPU on a cheaper Rosewill case. I think that 200mm fan is causing turbulence and I am going to change it to exhaust and see what happens. Those two turbo fans are pushing a good amount of air in there. My top fans are set up for the rear one to be exhaust and front as intake. Those 3 (stock fans) are connected to the fan controller on case. The exhaust, cpu and two turbo's are connected to MB.

 
 
BeardCreep 1 point 13 months ago

the rubber feetsie clearance should be fine.

dont make too much exhaust, you want more intake than exhaust

positive pressure = less dust

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Ok. My temps aren't a concern as of yet since the CPU hasn't seen over 40. I will keep an eye on it though.

 
 
BeardCreep 1 point 13 months ago

its not so much a temp thing, its a dust thing. allright! enjoy

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Ahhh I see. Gotcha. You think that 200mm side fan is gonna cause more trouble than cooling?

 
 
BeardCreep 1 point 13 months ago

no. sidefan = fresh air for your gpu.

intake is important though.

good rule of thumb

Top & top left exhaust bottom intake. side intake. front intake.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks for the advice. That is how its setup now so I will leave it be.

 
 
BeardCreep 1 point 13 months ago

yeah no sweat.

 
 
PacificNic [2 Builds] 3 points 13 months ago

Lucky kid!

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 2 points 13 months ago

Dude I get 4 FPS on minecraft on my laptop. Your son is lucky lol, I'm building one soon but I'm only 14 so it's gonna be tough getting 1800$. Although I do have a part time job lol. Doing a 770 build just like yours pretty much.

 
 
TheGreatJoshua 2 points 13 months ago

Where do you get a job at 14? I thought there were child labor laws against that.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 2 points 13 months ago

Lol I live in indiana, you can detassle corn for an easy $800 so that should help

 
 
xSWATxBadkid [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

I work with my Dad all summer lol.

 
 
senstalex [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

For minecraft you dont need much at all. I wouldnt spend so much on a pc if your so young. save it for a car.. lol get $600 system.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Lol I know, I know. It's not just for minecraft I'm playing other games like arma 3 and BF3. I guess you're right about the money but I'm guessing ill still be able to get a car with the money I've already saved.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 2 points 13 months ago

The HD 4000 was playing minecraft just fine. Its on the SSD though so it helps. I could have stayed under a grand but screw settling for good enough. I went with over the top. I haven't downloaded the benchmarks programs yet (Im going to) but I was getting 1000 on FFXIV with the HD 4000 and now I am getting 12000. Im sure my FRAPS are atleast 100 but I haven't downloaded that yet either. I just got it all finished yesterday.

 
 
seanapa 4 points 13 months ago

Lose the FRAPS!!!!

Dxtory has way less of a hit on FPS in-game.It creates some massive file sizes (30gb for a 15-25 minute round on BF3)But there is plenty of software to shrink it down and delete the original.

I, along with many other gamers, recommend Dxtory over FRAPS any day.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I haven't even downloaded it yet. I will check out the Dxtory. Thanks for the info.

 
 
peaceoutbro123 1 point 12 months ago

also check out mirillis action, that is a great recording software, and the file sizes aren't to big if you want to record gameplay.

 
 
Apach3 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

if you're looking for a good gaming system on a budget, i highly recommend an APU-based system. it's fairly easy to put together a $500-600 gaming system with an APU and still get good framerates at respectable settings. if my APU-equipped laptop can play Skyrim at Medium on integrated graphics alone, i'm sure a desktop APU will have no troubles playing other games at similar specifications, especially with Dual Graphics enabled.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I built the same PC with a different case and stuck with the HD400 for his moms house. It worked out great for minecraft. I wanted something bigger for here. I have been a console gamer my whole life and wanted to see the full effect of PC gaming. The graphics and diversability are great and I can't see going back to console.

 
 
Apach3 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

i know, but i was moreso referencing the original commenter. it doesn't take much to run Minecraft, but it does take a fair bit more to run a game like BF3. i clearly understand your desire for more, though.

 
 
jasher11 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

i just got a pc and nowadays most modern PC's run BF3 at the highest settings, if you get an i5 and a gtx 660 you will have an awesome system that wont cost $1800

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Yeah I started off with a 600 dollar budget and ended up at almost 2000 after misc parts (monitor mount, cables, etc). It will be that much more meaningful if you save all that money so I hope you do. I want my son to be way ahead of the curve with computers so we built this together. He is 8 and can tell you want the core components do. You will love the 770! It's not quite a Titan but really dang close.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Yeah the 770 is the best one in my opinion because its better than the 680 for 100$ less. Unfortunately my dad would rather shoot a computer with one of his many hunting guns before be considered helping me with one lol

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 9 points 13 months ago

It's a lot of money and I understand how he feels but my son has this super rare bone disease. He can't play sports and might end up in a lot of pain when he gets to be a teenager. Since he can't do all the normal kid stuff I will buy his happiness.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 2 points 13 months ago

I'm really sorry to hear that, I could never imagine what you guys had to go through. My dads friend has a son with a bone disease too, and it is so sad to see them missing out on sports and stuff. But I'm glad you are willing to do that just for him, I think that really shows a true dad

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks man:)

 
 
jackrzucidlo [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

You don't need a 1800 dollar pc to play mc. If all you're doing is minecraft look into the a10 or a8 Richland APUs

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 2 points 13 months ago

Revised. New parts will be here Wed. Pics to follow.

 
 
xolot1 [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

Question: What did you do with the "Kingston Cooling Fan for HyperX PC Memory KHX-FAN"? Did it not fit with the h100i installed?

 
 
Genarus [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Its such a basic build but for what its used for its a little overkill =P unless your kid plays other games but should suit him for a long while. GJ on this build

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 2 points 13 months ago

I wanted it to play FFXIV flawlessly. I am done buying gaming consoles. I got a ps3, xbox, wii, and two Ipads. Atleast with a PC you can push the limits, get better graphics and upgrade as needed. I doubt I will even turn on any of consoles again. The 500 bucks I saved not buying a PS4 justified the extra I spent on this thing lol. Thats how I looked at it.

 
 
Genarus [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Exactly. Good choice

 
 
TheCanadianGamer16 [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

wow, epic build, mine started off with an old 3670K APU with X-Fire'd 7770's, now its an FX-6100 @4.2Ghz watercooled with a 7970, all in the 6 months ive had my computer lol

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Yeah its hard to stop at just "alright" standards. I'll be keeping an eye on my cpu temp once FFXIV comes out. Might end up trying the watercooled.

 
 
TheCanadianGamer16 [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

yeah, as soon as i got my first build done i had to upgrade, now im selling it off and going intel with the same cpu, the FX series just runs too hot for being in my room

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I had an AMD set up on this site and went with the Intel cause of the temps and wattage. That and I really liked the idea of that integrated BIOS on the MB. It made learning this stuff much easier and still makes tweaking so easy.

 
 
TheCanadianGamer16 [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

yeah, im only going intel for performance, and the heatsinks on my ASUS M5A99X EVO are burning hot, whereas the recent 3770K build for a family member i did with a Gigabyte Z77 UD5H were ice cold even at 4.2Ghz, so im going 3570K when i can

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

My ex's is running at 23-25 with the same build but different case and no GPU. Crazy cool

 
 
sketch24 [6 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

This is a premium build. The CPU cooler could have been better, but it doesn't matter much if you are looking for conservative overclocks. Major overkill for minecraft, but I'm guessing it will be used for more than just that.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Yeah I was a little disappointed in the CPU cooler too. It had such good reviews and for 23 bucks I don't regret it. After I get some time to do a serious benchmark on it I will see how I feel from there. The FFXIV bench is only putting my cpu at 40 degrees so far. I want it to stay as low as possible. If it gets high I will upgrade it. I'm really not on a budget so its no big deal.

 
 
SumanIV [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Nice build, like how the GPU has a backplate, and rest of build looks well rounded out, 128GB SSD, 1TB Caviar Blue, and nice monitor too. Enjoy you gaming build. c:

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks! I had no idea how great an SSD was. I read it was fast but my god its really fast. It is so nice only having to wait seconds for a write or read. I still need to learn more about this intel smart storage deal. So far nothing has been directed to my 1TB HDD.

 
 
stnz [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Great build ! Good parts and cool room. My only concerns are : why 16GB of RAM, for gaming ? Even running a server of Minecraft with full ext and plugins does not use more than 6GB. Why a 850W PSU ? Planning on going the SLI route ? Cable management could be a beat neater if you could pull a bit more on the cable, give it an hour or two ;), same for the cable management outside (but that's just me and my OCDs :p). A 760 would have been just fine but if you had the money for a 770, why not afterall !

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I've been waiting for this reply lol! It just started off as a build for MC. Its exactly why I went with 850. I had the 660 installed and would have been pushing my wattage. When my ex asked to build one I saw an opening to get a larger PSU. What I was hoping was that the cables were the same on th 660 as the 850. Turned out I was wrong. I actually had two asus 650 TI Boosts waiting to install when I saw that some games don't support SLI and that the performance is only about 50 percent better than just one 650. I sent them back and ordered the 770 to allow for upgrade in the future. I see a lot of crossfires and SLI's so hopefully in few years more games will support it.

I had actually settled on the 760 and said F it and just went with the 770. My cable management got a little more complicated with the 850. Those braided cables are stiff as all get out on that thing. Running the PCI-E's through the back was putting a lot of stress on the connection at the video card. After spending 420 bucks on that thing I wasn't about to break it so I ran it down the sata cage. Everything is still out of the way for air flow. After seeing some of your guys builds I want to tidy it up but honestly no one see's in there and my side panel is quite a bit more organized then most of the builds I've seen. I don't like having all those wires piled up in one side. If something goes wrong or I have to replace something then it will be a lot easier this route. I literally swapped that psu in 5 mins and had the new one wired up quickly since everything wasn't bunched to one side.

 
 
stnz [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Great, thanks for the explanation ! That actually explains the 850W PSU quite well, I was just wondering you know. And like I said, regarding the cable management, it's mostly my OCDs that are saying that, if anything it's all fine, and I can't sincerely say it's going to harm your airflow (not that I said in my previous comment). One 770 is going to give you a long lasting build, I just purchased one for myself and I'm upgrading from a GTX 285, imagine the difference ? :p. And yeah, most games being released nowadays support SLI so later on, in two years or so, just buy a second 770 for half its actual price and you'll be set for a couple of years ;). Thanks for all these informations, helped me understand your build way better. Hope you and your son have plenty of fun with it :)

 
 
Apach3 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

it's a bit overkill for Minecraft, but i guess if you want to stick around for Minecraft 1.100.6 then this would be the way to do it. :P

clever implementations all across the board, from the monitor on the wall-mounted arm to the HSF solution to even the shelf board separating the tower from the carpet floor. congratulations, you have successfully spoiled your son.

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 2 points 13 months ago

Thanks lol. Its kinda of like my retreat as well when he is with his mom and now we can game together when he is here.

 
 
Apach3 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

that's awesome that you made something so capable for your son, and even better that you can do something with him. he's so lucky to have an awesome dad like you :D

btw: i have the exact same RAM for my build, except i only have one set, and i paid twice as much as you did per set at the time (i bought it before 1x8GB sticks were sold for the same price as an equivalent 2x4GB set, so the build's oldest hardware is about three years old)

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I couldn't pass up 37 bucks for those. Great price

 
 
Apach3 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

and the best thing is, even with one set you're good to go. the only time i utilize all 4GB of RAM is when i'm installing a program from an ISO file

 
 
godshawk 1 point 13 months ago

Minecraft is the GPU hog of the century; haven't you heard?

 
 
MrDam404 1 point 13 months ago

Nice build man! Very nice temps on the CPU and GPU, that GTX770 is awesome! Good idea on the wooden plank, won't choke the psu that way. I have a similar setup where I put the pc on a small cart thing so it doesn't get as dusty :)

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

You wouldn't believe how many hours I put into getting to the idea of just the wood plank. I have 150 bucks worth of raw material and a wire shelf in my garage that needs to be taken back lol.

 
 
AQUM 1 point 13 months ago

Awesome build! You must have a really good kid. I plan making a build with a GTX 770 too :)

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

You gonna go with the Asus? The back plate, low temps and noise level are great with it!

[comment deleted]
 
 
ElementalChaos 1 point 13 months ago

Damn, I only wish I had that kind of luxury when I was a kid. Great build, I love the swivel monitor on the side!

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

I know right? I remember setting up my super nes in the garage or a tent to be creative lol.

 
 
PCGAMER559 1 point 12 months ago

2082 USD for... minecraft?

 
 
bkherring [Submitter] [2 Builds] 1 point 12 months ago

No... 2K because I'm OCD. I could have easily stopped at 600 bucks but with the release of Final Fantasy 14 and my inability to just stop at good enough, we ended up with a 2000 dollar computer. I don't have a budget and could have easily spent 5K if I wanted to but the difference between what I built and what I could build to play a few games wasn't worth it. It was a challenge, I was curious if I could do it, so I did it.

 
 
PCGAMER559 1 point 12 months ago

Oh OK didn't realize you were going to be using it as well. Well props to you for being successful.:)

 
 
xolot1 [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

Final product looks gorgeous. +1 for the attention to detail and excellent part selection! Nice mod with the window, it improves the overall presentation of the computer IMO.

 
 
Cyperior [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

I just bought the Optical Drive you got, and I'm planning on buying the same motherboard. Did the motherboard come with appropriate SATA cables for the Asus optical drive? Thanks

 
 
DarkBlackZ 1 point 8 months ago

WHAT THE F*CK?! That kid is 10 years old and he haves a 2 000$ couter and a Xbox?