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First Build 100% done by myself. (Project Stealth) "The Patriot"
by 5murphy7
Permalink:   (36 comments)

Hey all! This is my 1st build and I had a $1,000 budget to work with and it started as a blue/black them but I ended up with some red/white too! :)


Having a functioning office computer that can rock out most games. In a sleek/stealth looking case.

Upgrade ready to SLI

No more than $1,000

Sleek good looking PC


CPU: I went with the FX-8320 and not the 8350 due to being relatively the same. I found a really good combo deal for Mobo/CPU that I couldn't pass up. No benchmarks at this time. But I will probably overclock to 4.0GHz

COOLER: I chose this cooler mainly for the color, but also due to similarities with the Hyper 212 EVO. I haven't strained it yet. I've been told the fan can get loud at full load. But that shouldn't be an issue with this stellar case.

MOTHERBOARD: I wanted a solid mobo for now and later. One suitable with heatsinks good for overclocking, the color theme helped too. This board has everything. I also love the Asus BIOs. Solid board and looks great.

MEMORY: Corsair Vengeance Blue. bam! 8GBs is about all you need.

STORAGES: I originally had the 120GB SSD for boot but decided 120GB was too small and opted for the 250GB. Go big or go home...right? The 1TB Storage drive is a typical budget PC HD. So far it works great for a 7200 RPM drive.

GPU: The 760 is actually a bit more than I planned to spend on a GPU. But figured if it was still under budget it is all good. I have not overclocked it or anything...yet. I did not want to spend over $250 on a card. So it worked out. I did not get the 4GB card because I don't think this card can actually utilize it. More of a gimmick if you as me. I do plan to SLI this with another in the future.

CASE: I love this case. I wanted stealth so I opted for no window. This thing is heavy! Well made and I am very impressed. The foam insulation is nice too. Very quiet. It has removable HDD bays, slide out back panel, filtered intakes, black/white finish is clean. No issues with fitment. Define R4 is sick.

PSU: I probably spent the most time on choosing a solid PSU. I kept going back and forth with Corsair. In the end I choose this EVGA 750W power supply for future proofing. The warranty was rock solid. Plus it looked pretty sweet.

WINDOWS EXPERIENCE: I don't have a screen shot now but it was 7.7. The RAM and CPU dropped it to 7.7 everything else was 7.9. Thing flys.

EXTRAS: The optical drive is just the usual CD/DVD burner from Asus. I'm running Windows 7 Home 64 bit.

SUMMARY: I was a bit nervous to do all this by myself. I have been talking about it for years and years. The first custom PC I had was in College. I had a friend order and build it for me. It was literally the fastest PC I had ever used and stayed that way for years. At a sub $1,000 budget. I am hoping for the same with this one. At the time I played CS, Planetside, WoW, Everquest, etc. I was in College over 10 years ago so obviously this PC is insane when compared to anything I've ever owned. All and all it was much easier than I thought and I look forward to many more builds. I expect my new rig will be able to handle most game that I plan to play at High or Ultra. I will keep you posted.

Questions, comments? Post them below, or in a PM.

Part List
Date PublishedMay 19, 2014
Date BuiltMay 17, 2014
AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz 8-Core Processor
CPU Clock Rate3.5GHz
CPU Temperature While Idle38.0° C
CPU Temperature Under Load-
EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB ACX Video Card
GPU Core Clock Rate980MHz
GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate6.01Ghz
GPU Temperature While Idle-
GPU Temperature Under Load-
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Sorted by:
Trinity596 [3 Builds] 2 points 5 months ago

put your gpu in the top slot. it will get better performance

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 5 months ago

I would but the USB 3.0 plug blocks the GPU. So I had to move it down. They are the same, though.

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 3 points 5 months ago

I actually just messed with the cable management a bit and was able to squeeze the GPU in the top slot. I realized it wasn't the usb 3.0 plug that was blocking the GPU it was the usb 3.0 plug wiring which was blocking. So I just re routed it through the top. Barely enough room. But it wored.

MrMOABy [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

They're actually both the same so he should be fine.

ExoTecher [1 Build] 2 points 5 months ago

I really like this build, it is very similar to mine :)

larsG35 [1 Build] 2 points 5 months ago

I have a similar EVGA modular PSU, kind of a PITA that the VGA power cables are red and to buy EVGA sleeved cables of a different color is like $90. I'm going to eventually buy colored cable extenders that fit my build theme.

It'll probably only cost $20 and really tidy up the color coordination.

You don't have a window, so it probably doesn't matter to you. Great build!

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Yea I might do that. But as you said. I have no window so it really doesn't bother me. I will literally be the only person that will ever see it. Well besides all you folks..haha...

If it did bother me I would have never bought the EVGA PSU. :)

Thanks! I think it turned out pretty good. Relieved.

ExoTecher [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Hope you don't mind but I have some questions:

  • How did you find cable management on the Define R4 Case? I used a Corsair RM PSU with the wierd sleeving so I found cable management a bit tricky.

  • I have exactly the same Windows Experience Score as you, is this considered a good score?

  • I get 35-38 Degrees C at idle and 39-41 Degrees C under load. Do you get the same temperatures?

  • Is your fan controller on the case working? Mine isn't.

  • How is the motherboard? I almost bought that one but I got a Gigabyte one purely because it was all black.

I am truly sorry for the excessive amount of questions, but this build is so similar to mine, and has such similar circumstances that I couldn't help it :)

Rawr 1 point 5 months ago

I think 7.9 is the max score

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Indeed it is.

larsG35 [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

I'm not the submitter, but I can probably answer most of your questions pretty well.

  • Cable management in the Define R4 is excellent, especially if you have a modular PSU. Squeezing the thicker sleeved cables through the rubber grommets can be tricky, but with a little work, it should look good.
  • Windows Experience isn't exactly the best tool to determine system performance. That said, 7.9 is the max, and 7.7 is very good.
  • Those are excellent temperatures. Not to doubt you, but it's unlikely that you have those max temperatures under an extended 100% CPU load especially with an air cooler. Typically anything less than 60 degrees C under load is very acceptable. Of course, the lower the better.
  • The fan controller in my Define R4 works fine (although it isn't the greatest in the world of fan controllers). Did you plug a molex power connector into it?

Hope that helps

ExoTecher [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Thanks! This really puts my temperature worries to ease, as I know that AMD temperatures are notoriously inaccurate. As for the windows experience, I am chuffed-to-bits that 7.9 is the highest score available :)

P.S. You know... I don't think I plugged that molex in... ;)

gregkolodny 1 point 4 months ago

Hes talking about temps with stock cooling; you have the best cooler for under $60 really. The 212 EVO is a budget beast compared to stock cooling. 60 is with stock. Yours make sense with a 212.

ExoTecher [1 Build] 1 point 4 months ago

ok, thanks :)

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

larsG35 addressed all the points well.

I love the mobo. I've had Gigabyte in the past. The build in college was with a gigabyte. I just heard lots of good things about this board and I like Asus. Plus blue theme was nice.

RandomPinto [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Those red wires though.... they really stand out

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 3 points 5 months ago

True. But I have no window. So does it really matter? :)

Look at it like a red/white/blue theme! haha..

Be patriotic =P

Lightheart3596 [3 Builds] 1 point 5 months ago

Really nice build. Are you gonna re-sleeve that red cable though? It ruins the whole blue white black color scheme you have going.

Keralis [2 Builds] 1 point 5 months ago

Quote 5murphy7

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 3 points 1 day ago True. But I have no window. So does it really matter? :) Look at it like a red/white/blue theme! haha.. Be patriotic =P

Deano_Awesome 1 point 5 months ago

Great build great parts plus one from me

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Thanks Deano!

GilChris95 1 point 5 months ago

America themed!

RazvanD 1 point 5 months ago

Im looking at the same cpu and gpu combo, how does your performance do in game? (Fps wise :P)

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Well the only game I have and play right now is Planetside 2. I played the original Planetside game on the lowest graphics and still lagged like crazy during big fights.

I'm happy to say I put all the settings to ultra. Pretty Much just maxed all the graphics to see if it could handle it. It did. With flying colors. I had 60 fps most of the time. During huge fights it never lagged but the fps would drop to around 35-45fps some. This is at ultra. I've literally never played any game at ultra...lol. Love this thing. Smooth.

Erolian 1 point 5 months ago

This almost was my own original design, before getting excited over the NZXT cases and throwing my $1200 budget out of the window...

I'm almost done with my build, just wait for some cabling & ODD to arrive.

Cheers on the nice build mate. :)

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

$1200+ build. Should be a nice build! :) I'll check it out when you are done.


shoe59 [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

well done

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

Thanks shoe

seraj89 1 point 5 months ago

I would've turned the CPU cooler around 180. It pevents dust buildup in the near future

5murphy7 [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago

I wanted the airflow from the front of the case to the rear. That's why I placed it where I did.

phoenixblue 1 point 2 months ago

This is pretty close to the build I'm finishing up right now; I don't have an SSD and am going with the R9 270X and a cheaper HAF tower by Cooler Master, so looks good! How do you like the 8320/Asus Mobo combination so far? Heard the overclocking management on it is great. Also, where did you get your combo from? I haven't seen any on the two so it's probably over. Great build, thanks!