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Dad's 50th Birthday Present

by Oliver



Date Published

March 24, 2016

Date Built

March 18, 2016

CPU Clock Rate

4 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.241 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7.01 GHz


      So... first build in a couple years and it was interesting reacquainting with the market! My dad's current desktop is probably 6-8 years old, and just doesn't have the ability to keep up with modern software requirements. I thought this build would be a nice update for him on a big day in his life. He does light gaming, and heavy multitasking on his computer. I know it's overkill currently, but I'm hoping it'll last him another 6 years if he's lucky. Put this rig together in about 3 hours, and it went extremely smoothly. Never used any of these products before except the fans.

      **If I could give one outstanding complement**, it would go to the Corsair H115i water cooler. I've done air cooled rigs, and custom water loops, but never prebuilt water cooling, which I was a little hesitant about. However, installation was a breeze, just as easy as most air coolers I've worked with! I did order 3rd party fans (the AF120) instead of using the stock fans it came with because I read that the stock fans were very loud, and I wanted to keep this build as quiet as possible for him. It worked like a charm; the entire rig is about as quiet as a soft whisper.

      **If I could give one outstanding complaint**, it would go to the Corsair 450D Mid ATX Tower. It happens to be a phenomenal case at a great value, but there was one big flaw  that drove me crazy: cable management space. I counted only TWO cable anchors to zip tie cables in the back, and they already had the cases default cables strapped to them. I ended up redoing the default cable layout, and removed the SSD brackets to use their mounting clasps as makeshift tie points for cables. I used pretty much the minimal amount of cables possible in a computer, and while I don't consider myself that bad at cable management, it was STILL a squeeze to get the side panel on.

      **Overall**, this build was a joy, and the computer works beautifully!! Super fast, quiet, and easy to modify and update parts in the future. The pictures don't do the rig justice (Just used a point and shoot with a flashlight), but I hope they can show you how well everything worked together. Lastly, I'm always open to criticism about how I can balance parts better for future builds, how I could manage the cables better, or anything else. Thanks!!!

Comments Sorted by:

AddisonKwong 4 points 37 months ago

Oh I uh um... will also have my birthday next week, er... so... maybe u could...

pebbles1 1 point 34 months ago


Xetion 3 Builds 3 points 37 months ago

You overpaid for that GPU. You could've gotten the msi or asus r9 380 4gb instead for $40 less, which both performs better and has a backplate

billden55 1 Build 2 points 37 months ago

see, Im planning to get the msi gtx 960 too and my friend said to go with the r9 380, I wasn't sure? So should I definitely go with the 380? is there any difference at all between the cards? any problems? Will my future computer work with this?


OMGriffinz 2 Builds 2 points 37 months ago

Yes the R9 380 outpreforms the gtx 960 by a lot now. http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-2804209/380-gtx-960.html In addition the new crimson drivers make the 960 useless compared to the r9 380 now...

billden55 1 Build 2 points 37 months ago

Cool! Thanks, I am excited to build my PC soon.

OMGriffinz 2 Builds 2 points 37 months ago

Considering your motherboard is blue (And I see you want a black/red setup) I would recommend you spend 12 dollars more for this. https://pcpartpicker.com/part/gigabyte-motherboard-gab85mds3ha

EDIT: I see you also have a black/blue case and wonder if you want a black/blue/red theme

billden55 1 Build 2 points 37 months ago

Thanks for the advice, I am still unsure about things so I am always looking for new stuff and considering things. yea colors are kind of off but its okay.

pegotico 2 Builds 2 points 37 months ago

even the 380x...

Oliver submitter 5 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

Ahh, thanks for the tip! Was looking for a GPU with 4gb of memory, and that was by far the cheapest I found on a brief search, so I believed I was getting a deal!

BBERG2016 2 points 37 months ago

What camera did you use to take pictures of your rip?

Oliver submitter 5 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

A Nikon coolpix LP120 I think.

Nijamwarlock 3 Builds 2 points 37 months ago

Nice build and great camera work, really nice pics.

Oliver submitter 5 Builds 1 point 37 months ago


floridaboz 4 Builds 2 points 37 months ago

Holy crap look at the detail on those pics. Nice camera work. If anyone ever wants to know what the heat pipe on a MSI cards looks like, i will send them to your build. O yeah, the guild is great, and i think this will last your dad a very long time.

[comment deleted]
floridaboz 4 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

build* and it has been to long, so i cant edit it, damnit

[comment deleted]
DayQuil_Man 2 points 37 months ago

How's the ,motherboard, run into any problems with it?

Looking to get the same one.

Sweet build btw +1

Oliver submitter 5 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

It's really smooth! Works perfectly!

bobdude_01 3 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

Very nice of you to make that computer for your dad's birthday! I love the color scheme, and the great pictures just brings out the color! +1

NikolaiKitov 1 point 37 months ago

With that power supply, Your pc is going to struggle for juice. I might move up to a 750. I know EVGA's website and their power meter will tell you one thing, but truthfully it doesn't really gauge real usage. It just kinda rounds everything out. Also, do not listen to Xetion PLEASE. the r9 380 4gb has more out of the box performance and costs $40 less but the 960 has infinitely more headroom for overclocking and maintains cooler temperatures. You can easily bump this card up 10-20% and destroy a r9 380. If you look underneath that chart he linked, you will see that the better point is in favor of the gtx 960 for your particular system as opposed to any AMD card. AMD cards will not get better in the future. Nvidia has taken too many strides as of the gtx 950 for AMD to bring any arguable competition to the table. I'm not being anal about it, just don't want you to make an uneducated decision. Please review benchmarks and specs before deciding. http://www.gpuboss.com http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-2804209/380-gtx-960.html

Leon1228 1 Build 1 point 37 months ago

that psu is fine, a normal gaming pc usually draws around 400-450 watts of power

Oliver submitter 5 Builds 1 point 36 months ago

Thanks for the confidence in my GPU choice Nikolai. For the PSU I used PC Part Picker's power estimations, and the max power required was still 120 watts below what I got, so I assumed I was safe. The only reason I think I may have undershot the power was not anticipating later expansions such as adding another graphics card, but I highly doubt he'll need that.