This was my first ever computer build. I had fun putting it together and learned a lot. There is a back story to this one...
About a year ago I was obsessed with Dota 2 and played it constantly. I had over 500 games played in just a couple months. Then I started a new job and transferred to a new university. I figured I needed a laptop, so I sold my then dated PC to my dad and bought an 11" Macbook Air for work and school. I also figured I would be more productive if I couldn't play computer games. Then about 7 months later I noticed that I never brought my laptop anywhere and I was actually less productive because I hated the tiny screen and keyboard. Although I liked the simplicity of OSX for general computing, I hated that I couldn't really game with it. So I sold my mac to some guy on craigslist for $800 and used the money to build this new computer.
So... my brand new gaming rig was paid for entirely with the profits from a 7 month old 11" Macbook Air. You can say bad things about macs, but you have to admit they hold their value well.
As implied by the title it will be used mainly for playing MOBAS, specifically DOTA 2 (it can play LoL too if you're one of those people). So far it performs extremely well. Max graphics, incredibly smooth and doesn't slow down during large team fights.
My purchased price is slightly higher than pcpartpickers price. This is because I bought the parts all locally at Fry's. Although they price match Amazon, Newegg, Tigerdirect, and Best Buy... I still had to pay sales tax. If you are more patient and can wait for your parts to arrive from online retailers, the build costs about $650 and I believe there might be a free game (assassins creed 4?) for buying the GPU at newegg. I received my copy of windows 7 for free from my school and I loaded it via usb. So the price of the OS will not be included. Also the motherboard is an MSI 970A-G43... not 970A-G46 (for some reason it wasn't listed as an option)
NOTE: If you have a Fry's electronics nearby I recommend you give them a visit even if you're not buying parts there. They have tons of cases there and I was happy to get the opportunity to inspect them. Several that initially appealed to me in my research were not so good in person. They either felt cheap or had some design problems.
I am going to use this computer for another 6-8 months and then build myself another and give this one to my fiance so we can game together.
What I love about the rig:
-Great value -Solid performance -Case is sturdy and looks good without being gaudy -No problems during assembly (some driver installation issues) -Free space and enough power to make upgrades down the road
What I dislike about the rig:
-Not enough cable management. I wasn't able to hide everything. -Motherboard driver difficulties
Lessons I have learned from this build:
-Buy a modular power supply. I hate having exposed cables. -Buy a better case... same reason as above (shame because I love the case otherwise). -Proactively download drivers for the motherboard, especially the Ethernet controller. If I didn't have access to another computer this would have been a BIG problem.