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Mom and Kids 2nd build, $700 Gaming Machine

by mayalass



Date Published

Feb. 6, 2015

Date Built

Feb. 3, 2015

CPU Clock Rate

3.5 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.279 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7.01 GHz


Last year my kids and I built our first computer (https://pcpartpicker.com/b/xLNG3C), and it went so well, we decided to build another one. The kids are 11 and 9, now, and the new computer will be mostly used for my daughter's gaming (Skyrim, Rift, Minecraft with mods, and Trove are popular right now) and Photoshop digital painting (son gets last year's machine). We had a very strict budget, $700, and I plugged in our parts list here and fiddled, and waited to get the price we wanted. We already had a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and Windows--add all of those in and it's probably more like $1000.

The building itself went pretty well. We took our time and watched a lot of youtube videos anytime we got stuck, haha. We needed a micro-atx case to fit the spot in the desk where it would go (see the picture where it is snugged in, daughter likes the blue light, says it gives us "ambiance"). Thumbs up for final size, but the cable management was impossible--there is no space behind the mobo, you just have to try to get things twisted around under the drive bays. Still, it all worked when we turned it on (we cheered), and now that it is loaded up with software, the thing is zippy, beautiful graphics, and lag-free. Very happy!

Cable management aside (its ugly, I hang my head in shame) if you see any problems, let me know! I feel like we managed by the seat of our youtubing-pants. With noobs, it isn't the obvious things that throw you but the little details (silly small things like which side of the mounting bracket goes against the motherboard...that stopped us for ten minutes, or can 3 pin fans plug into 4 pin slots? apparently, yes).

Thanks go to pcpartpicker, we couldn't have done it without this site. Now each of the kids has a machine of their own, no more high level negotiations over whose turn it is, and they can play each other, super fun.

Comments Sorted by:

hoekstra1 1 Build 7 points 46 months ago

The spaghetti monster is a popular way of cable management. lol anyways nice on the build, +1. Did you use a virtual machine setup with dual screens? or is your other daughter using a different computer?

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

SPAGHETTI !!! Haha, yes! Two machines, two monitors. Thanks.

hoekstra1 1 Build 1 point 46 months ago

Oh, ok thanks! haha, would have been cool to seen a dual screens setup.

the_legendairy_cow 6 points 46 months ago

glad to see you have your kids playing on a pc not a peasant console.

amazexxzombie 2 points 32 months ago

praise the glory of the pcmr

polykow 1 Build 2 points 46 months ago

Pretty awesome!! I would have left the cooler out as it is not needed and used that towards a small SSD drive instead but hey this is amazing! your kids are lucky to have such great parents!!!

polykow 1 Build 1 point 46 months ago

I just read about your first build and I see why you decided to use a CPU cooler. :)

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

Hi Polycow! Thanks for this, and glad to see you! You were my original inspiration, you know! Yes, we had trouble last summer with overheating on our first build. Actually, this 2nd build seems hot, too, even with the coolermaster, and it being winter and chilly inside...speedfan says temps are between 75 and 90 F. All fans are running, I am pondering what to do before summer.....

Anawsomeguy 1 Build 1 point 45 months ago

I believe 90 degrees Fahrenheit is about 30 degrees Celsius which is a very good temp to be idling at. If it gets above 80 degrees Celsius then I would be worried.

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 1 point 45 months ago

That's good to know, thanks so much!

polykow 1 Build 1 point 45 months ago

ours is running cool and well and we do not even have a special CPU cooling system! have you tried researching each specific part or your case to see if others have issues with them? That way you can pinpoint what is most likely causing it. And Congrats on your build!

sgdeepu 1 Build 2 points 45 months ago

Nice ! How did you end up with 19$ 1TB HD?

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 1 point 45 months ago


superninjaleprechaun 2 points 45 months ago

Your family is awesome. Just saying.

SuryaM 10 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

your daughters play Skyrim at that young of an age? Nice build but manage the cables.

Durann31 1 Build 1 point 46 months ago

i think the daughter is the one on the left XD not the right

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 2 points 46 months ago

Son is on the left ( with the braid). Dad plays Skyrim, too, it's practically a family business, lol. I don't play, I'm just the tech support.

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Liam81 1 point 46 months ago

I took a look at your last build and you were at 276 likes.. Not too shabby !!

I think you could have done a bit better with a case that afforded better cable management possibilities or maybe a PSU that is semi-modular reducing cables.

Each child now has a nice PC that can be upgraded.

All in all I think your last sentence of second paragraph tells it all ... "VERY HAPPY"

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

Modular PSU, YES, if only I had done that. :)

Meithen 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

I can't wait to do this with my kids!

josh95 1 Build 1 point 45 months ago

Pretty solid build I must say, good job. How is that GPU works for ya for those games that the kids play?

mayalass submitter 2 Builds 2 points 45 months ago

It's terrific! Very fast and responsive, gorgeous, no lag even on maxxed out settings on something like Skyrim.

chweneboy37 1 point 43 months ago

When I built my PC I got a Solid state drive, I found out with a SSD it takes about 5 seconds to get to the login page. So if yer going to upgrade I would recommend the Evo 850 series solid state drive, 250 gigabytes, but also keep yer 1 terabyte one to so you'll have 1250 gigabytes, and yer pc will turn on faster because the ssd pull your information out quicker(ssd is kinda like a flash drive but it's in your computer)

littleturdlet 1 point 42 months ago

Awesome build, i wish my parents would build a computer with me.

xutybarry 1 point 39 months ago

nice build ready to get one~

jesus2028 1 point 39 months ago

Bad place for the PC but good built

strikewalker 1 point 35 months ago

Did Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO leave space to use both RAM slot?. Thanks and nice build I love 960 <3

JheyoDELperu 1 point 18 months ago

why im loving this pc.'!.. its compact..its efficient for the price... kinda 2 years later..but still..like it +1

superhostile 0 points 46 months ago

those cables tho

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violetrainxx 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

Did you read the description?

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