This is my first build, so go easy on me :p I'll be using it primarily for gaming. I've always been a console gamer (PS2 and PS3), but a lot of my friends had PCs and they said I needed to have one, because it was much better than consoles. At first I was sceptic, but then started to make some research and came to the conclusion that they were right. So I started to do a lot of research on the components (compatibillity and the best parts that would fit my budget) and on the building itself. Bear in mind that I'm from Portugal, so the prices here don't exactly match yours. I'm saying this because you might find strange my decision on the case, since there are a lot of better cases in the $80 category. But here in Portugal, the HF1 edition (with the red fans) was only 2 euros more than the blue one, unlike the US, where the HF1 is $30 (!) more than the standard version.
CPU: My first choice, one of the easiest to make, it was quite obvious since the beggining. I'm really happy with it. I managed to safely overclock it to 4.7 Ghz, but that's just too much, I was just testing how much I could go, although I didn't even test beyond that mark. Usually I run it at 3.6 Ghz, which is more than enough for a CPU like this.
CPU Cooler: Also an easy choice. Opted for the mainstream, everyone uses it, and I see why, it's really good at what it does.
Motherboard: This one was more difficult, since there is a plethora of them flooding the market. I eventually opted for this one because it had really positive reviews, that praised its price/performance relation. And I don't regret it. It OCs very well, has high quality components and a lot of features.
Memory: Not a hard decision. Good price, good looks, good quality, good performance and it fits really well in my reddish color scheme. Went for 1866 Mhz because it was aroung 3 euros more than the 1600 Mhz version, so I figured why not?
Storage: I wasn't sure if I should get this or the Blue, because this one was quite more expensive, but after some research, I opted with this one, because in forums people were saying the Blue was for data intensive stuff like gaming, so I went with the Black. I also intend to get an SSD in the future.
Video Card: This part was the one that occupied the biggest amount of time in my research. At first I wanted a GTX 660, but then I realised that it wouldn't be enough, so GTX 760 it was. But then the price of the GTX 770 dropped, and I thought why not? It would give me a significant performance boost. I wanted MSI TwinFrozr, but when I was going to order everything it was out of stock, so I went with Asus. I had some trouble with it because it wasn't being recognized. Then I removed it and installed it again, and it worked. I don't know what I did differently, but it worked :D
Case: I like the futuristic looks of it, the materials are good, it's very versatile while building and it's roomy. And the fans are red, which is always good :)
Power Supply: Here in Portugal, Corsair and Seasonic are very expensive, and I think XFX is the only quality brand that also has good prices. I wasn't sure if 550W were going to be enough, but I did some research again and I went for it.
Overall, I'm very proud and happy with my build, and everything works very well. Also feel free to leave any suggestion or question in the comments down below. I hope you enjoy my build!
Recently bought an MSI R9 290 Gaming, I know it's not a big upgrade but it cost me 3-4 euros more than the money I got from the GTX 770. You can definitely notice the difference in games like Shadow of Mordor, Assassin's Creed Unity and Battlefield 4. Already did some overclocking, and discovered the memories aren't that great (black screen at 1450 Mhz) but in terms of core clock I don't thing I've hit the maximum yet. In conclusion, it's a nice upgrade in performance, especially for the price I paid.