Description

Here's a "gaming server" concept build with a $1100 budget. Since this is a server that can run games, it's very similar to a traditional gaming build. The difference is that this build is far more energy-efficient, with components like a Platinum rated power supply.

Since you don't have to worry about leaving it on all the time, this is a great build for running your Steam server through Steam Link. The other great thing about this build is that it's highly upgradable in case you want to add a more powerful GPU in the future.

The GTX 960 SSC 4GB powers this build in the graphics department, providing enough juice for 1080p gaming demands. The GPU is only about 20% of the total cost for this build, which leaves money in your pocket for a future GPU upgrade later this year.

The i5-6500 was selected due to its great performance-per-watt, and at around $200 it's also a great deal.

Components like the Seasonic Snow Silent power supply, the Noctua fans, and the Samsung Pro boot drive make this build cool, quiet, and reliable.

This is my first custom build, and I would love to hear if you fellow builders have any comments. Thanks!

I do recommend adding a Samsung Evo 500GB for additional storage once the boot drive fills up.

Geekbench Score (64-bit): 4042 single core / 11875 multi core

Part Reviews

CPU

Good value, with better performance-per-watt than i5-6600K.

Case

Went with this over the base S340 because I wanted the flush rear I/O plate. I dig the green lights, and the tinted window has a mirrored finish that looks quite nice.

Power Supply

Ended up being my favorite component. Runs completely silent at under about 1/3 load, or 250W.

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Comments

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

Get a Cooler & Overclock your CPU upto 4.5GHz. A CM 212X would be fine. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrfTcXQlsbs

[You could get a GTX970 if you had spent your money wisely on Ram,SSD,Casing,PSU]

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks Rabab! I will definitely take a look into overclocking this build. There is 161 mm of vertical clearance in this case for a CPU cooler, so the CM 212X should fit. The 212X was just released, nice! I was also looking at the NH-U12S, is that still a good option?

Thanks for that video, looks like the OC 6500 performs amazing when the GPU is not bottlenecking. In Far Cry 4 the OC 6500 gets a whole 30 FPS higher. That's really great.

Good advice on the GTX 970, I think for most gamers that would be a better optimization. Unless you're planning to upgrade your GPU within the next year, I would recommend making this a $1200 build and including the GTX 970, or reducing the cost of other components to fit it into the $1100 budget.

Switching the power supply from a 750W Platinum to a 550W Gold, for example, would bring down the cost substantially.

  • 48 months ago
  • 1 point

CM Hyper 212 EVO & CRYORIG H7 are the bang for the buck. [CM EVO is not available in my country; 212 EVO & 212X are basically same] Don't need to spend more on NH-U12S for i5-6500.

If you are planning to upgrade your GPU later, then wait for Nvidia Pascal which will be release in Q3,2016 or AMD Polaris(Q1,2017).