After selling a few things last week, I had money burning a hole in my pocket and I was itching to build so I pulled the trigger on this baby. All parts were ordered on 10/16/13. Case and HDD were bought used on my local classifieds (hence the use of a 5400 RPM drive; just couldn't pass it up for $30). Ram was purchased on Amazon and as soon as I bought it the prices went back up to $80 so I guess I got lucky. The rest was purchased on Newegg. Total for everything came out to $512 after mail in rebates. Pictures at the beginning with 1 Ram stick was before my Ram from Amazon had arrived.
CPU: Absolutely love this CPU for the money. Haven't had a chance to OC this yet but I will update as soon as I get around to it.
Cooler: Does at great job at keeping my CPU cool and at a great price. Just a few minor annoyances. The stock fan that was included with the cooler was rubbing against the radiator making a terrible noise. Tried to mount the fan on the other side but the included screw was not long enough. After a bit of sanding and bending I was able to stop the noise. Would have preferred not to have to do that but for $25 I have no complaints about the performance of this cooler.
MOBO: Absolutely love this motherboard! It is the first ASRock motherboard I have owned and I am willing to bet that it is one of the best budget boards out there. Yes it's only the 970 chipset but for $65 I think it's a steal. I hate the look of blue and black mobo's so about half of all other boards in this price range were immediately eliminated. My only complaints (very minor) would have to be that it doesn't have right angle SATA ports and the placement of the USB 3.0 front panel connector was in an odd place. I thought the latter was going to make my cable management look very poor but the 3.0 cable hid very nicely behind my I/O shield and the black on black against the motherboard helped a ton.
RAM: Got so lucky with this ram. Had my parts all picked out then went to Amazon...out of stock. Buy all my other parts on Newegg, come back to Amazon and BAM...back in stock. As soon as I bought it they went back out of stock and then the price was raised. XMP kicked right in. Didn't even have to touch bios to get them running at 1600.
HDD: 5400 RPM is a little slow but 1TB of storage for $30 I just couldn't pass up.
GPU: For $150 this thing has some CRAZY price to performance power. Yes the cooler is not that great and runs pretty hot but overall this is a great card. It sits at just over "10 so it is a bit on the long side. Overclocked without a problem up to 1200 core and 1550 memory. On stock it was running at ~78C under load. OC to ~85C under load.
Case: LOVE LOVE LOVE this case. In fact, I loved working with it so much that I bought the white version with a window the day after I built this to use in a future build. Cable management is great on it and overall it is a very well built case. Removable drive cage bay is nice and creates plenty of airflow while maintaining silence. My only gripe with this thing is that the side cable management grommets are not really in the best spot for the 24 pin mobo connector. I would have loved to see them use three smaller but evenly spaced cutouts so that the 24 pin would be right in line.
PSU: I know this isn't the highest quality PSU and that its just a rebrand from EVGA but the fact that it was $30 and was 80 Plus Bronze Certified was good enough for me. Whoever put the stickers on this thing was brain dead. It's upside down when you put the PSU in the right way. Cables hid very nicely though so much in fact that I don't even think I could have made this thing look much cleaner with a modular PSU.
Let me know what you guys think. Things I should have changed or improved on?
Edit: Oh yeah forgot to mention the Chivalry reference. Used this to play like Chivalry till like 1 last night and couldn't come up with a cool name. Screw Agatha :p