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Build

Athena AMD Balance Gaming build

by Termiux

12
10 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

Jan. 5, 2015

Date Built

Dec. 20, 2014

CPU Clock Rate

4.4GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

30.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

35.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.2GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

5.8GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

35.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

60.0° C

Description

Its my main system, I use it for pretty much everything I need of a pc which is mainly internet browsing, torrents, music, gaming and writing code.

Its a more or less balanced system, I could have saved more money on a few items but I wanted head room for changes, getting quality components and a matching theme

I also needed monitor, keyboard and mouse and decided to get something nice there :P

This is also my first build and my first overclock too, its not so big bit its stable and I'm liking my temps.

As a note, I had to Mod my case to fit my radiator in the front of the case, is a little bit too long and the 5 1/4 drive cage was getting in the way. Unfortunately the case had the cage mainly riveted so I had to drill the rivets and then take off 4 screws after that the rest was much easier.

Part Reviews

Motherboard

Pros: Looks very nice and the new revision included a heat pipe between the north bridge and the VRMs. Good heat dissipation temps in HWmonitor for the mobo around high 30's ~ low 40's under load (with good airflow 2 corsairs SP 120 on the front) Supports Overclocking and has been very stable with it The UEFI supports profiles

Cons: Needs more Fan Headers!!!!! really!! are you kidding me! I ended up using even the power fan connector, but had to use a low speed resistor adapter to minimize the noise since it runs at 100% all the time Cpu core voltages were moving all over the place even when set static I know this also has to do with AMD architecture requirements but come on. The UEFI is not that easy to use, its decent enough The EasyTune software has very limited options for this mobo (I've seen pic of the software on other mobos) and looks like its from the 90's. The documentation is bad and the illustrations worst.

Other Thoughts: Not the best overclocker but gets the job done. Cpu Load line calibration can be quite useful just be careful with the setting you select. I recommend normal (which is what I'm using with my oc) or less unless you are water cooled.

To me the biggest down side is the lack of fan headers the rest is not big deal.

Its holding my 8350 at 4.4Ghz with air CM hyper 212 evo.

Video Card

Pros: I got it at a good price <$200 is very nice Overclocks very well Low temps under 40's idle and mids 50's under load (gaming) Low noise (at least with fans under 60%, anything over you will hear) All the standard inputs (just wishing for standard display port but it has mini so its fine) Includes accessories in the box that's nice. Good looking MSI gaming app allows you to oc 70mhz with 1 click which is nice but not really noticeable.

Furmark and Afterburner helped me get this card from 933Mhz to 1150Mhz on the core with mid to low 60's temps during stress testing.

I had no trouble with $20 rebate, just sent the required docs, but did took some time to get it around 2 months. Cons: At over 60% the fans start to really make noise. The "auto" fan control is a bit too conservative for my taste, but this can be fixed easily with afterburner custom fan curve, so no big deal. Other Thoughts:

Before buying it I check some reviews and its what I expected it, no more and no less.

I cannot play every game at max settings, but I do play most games somewhere between high and ultra depending on the game with some games getting around 50fps and others 100+fps.

Case

Pros: The case is a little on the cheap side, depends on the price you get if <$60 I say its worth it, but not over, just save $20 or $30 more and get a better case.

Its got good airflow with space for 140mm fans in the front, altouth getting 140mm there would be a bit of a pain cause of the space but its doable.

Its a decent size so it can fit a CM Hyper 212 Evo with a couple mms to spare.

Has dedicated SSD slot (but you need some force to set the ssd in)

Has a good size back plate cut out and cable management cut outs

Will fit very large graphic cards and psu

Supports 120mm fan in the bottom (if your psu is small)

Subjective, but I think it looks cool

Has a windows to show ur work of art :)

Cons: First you have to make sure to route the CPU power cable BEFORE setting the mobo or it wont fit. The cut out is too small for the connector to fit, so pass it before you screw the mobo in place. Once there you can pull the cable though is a little tight.

Also I recommend you plug the cable right there and then, otherwise you might have a hard time trying to plug it specially if you have a big air cooler like I do.

The "air filters" are useless, their are more like a mesh with really big holes. I live in texas which is kinda a desert so there's a lot of dirty in the air, I have only around 3weeks with this build and I can already see dust inside it!! but with 2 fans pulling intake I guess that was bound to happen.

Also these filters are a pain to remove. The one on the top is not realistic if you install fans or a radiator since you will have to remove them to get the "filter" off. The one of the front is easy enough bur you need to take off the whole front. The once on the bottom for the psu is also a pain to remove. I suggest you do it with the system off and cables unplugged so you can till it more easily.

Before buying the case I saw reviews complaining that the paint comes off very easily its true. You can see this if your not careful with ur screw driver or while installing the psu.

Also there are no grommets for the cut out holes for cable management, not a big deal but worth mentioning.

This might not really be a con but, the windows is kinda big, consider this before getting it.

I tried to hide my PSU cables but since the space on the side panel for cable management is not very big, hiding all the cables is not easy you will see them cause the big windows doesn't cover not even the hard drive cages.

Other Thoughts: Overall I think the case is good looking and has an attractive price, but is kind of a pain to work with and wont help keeping ur system clean, if this is not a deal breaker I say go get it.

Comments Sorted by:

froggerz 1 point 35 months ago

I personally would have gone with the 285, it is cheaper and better

Termiux submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

I would too, if I could go back in time, but the 285 it wasn't even out when I got this one, I've been buying parts for months.

At least I got a very good overclocker

froggerz 1 point 35 months ago

Ahh. Well, the difference in performance is not huge, so the overclocking should make the difference barely noticeable.

MrUnknownPerson -1 points 35 months ago

'Budget', does NOT mean $1000.

At all.

You've made a good build that will work very will, hope you're pleased with it. :D

Termiux submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

I'm I know AMD is releasing a new cpu this year but I couldn't wait I'm liking my rig ;)

TewGudAlex 1 point 20 months ago

Example of budget ex. My Budget is 1000$ budget is the most you wish to spend

[comment deleted by staff]
MrUnknownPerson 2 points 35 months ago

True, but the meaning of 'budget' in the PC enthusiast community is typically used to mean 'cheapish', or between $400-$600.

The actual definition of budget means a price limit you set, so we're both right.

[comment deleted by staff]
Termiux submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

The AMD Ram was a mistake, I originally planned an APU build (which benefits from high frequency ram) but later changed my mind (after buying the ram).

The HDD is cause I wanted a bit more perf in the hd and the longer warranty.

For the card I wanted to keep my build AMD so I went for the AMD R9 cards and got a good deal on the card at the time, also I didn't wanted to spent over 200 on the card.

Termiux submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

I forgot to the mention this, but the case is good looking and very good price, but is kind of a pain in the ***.

First you have to make sure to route the CPU power cable BEFORE setting the mobo or it wont fit the cut out is too small and the connector wont fit, you can pull the cable once you screw the mobo though is a little tight.

Also the "air filters" are crap, their are more like a mesh with really big holes. I live in texas which is kinda a desert so there's a lot of dirty in the air, I have only around 3weeks with this build and I can already see dust inside it!! wtf! but with 2 fan pulling intake I guess that was bound to happen.

Before buying the case I saw reviews complaining that the paint comes off very easily its true. You can see this if your not careful with ur screw driver or while installing the psu.

Also there are no grommets for the cut out holes for cable management, not a big deal but worth mentioning.

Finally the windows is kinda big, consider this before getting it. I tried to hide my PSU cables but since the space on the side panel for cable management is not very big, hiding all the cables is not easy you will see them cause the big windows doesn't cover not even the hard drive cages.

All that aside if cheap is good. It's a good starting case, but I will be upgrading soon

[comment deleted by staff]
Termiux submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

I would like to have some but daaaamn they are expensive!

[comment deleted by staff]