This my 2nd personal PC build my previous one can be found on my profile but after researching for months on products, and watching videos I came up with probably ~20 variations on my build constantly changing it and this is the end product.
Now even though this was my 2nd PC build, it doesn't mean everything went smoothly. In fact, I think my 1st build was smoother overall because I never personally installed an AIO cooler, I never added extra case fans, I never had RGB, and I never installed an M.2 drive. While yes I have done all of these in the past by helping friends with their builds, I didn't touch any of their components during the installation process. With AMD's new Ryzen processors, I thought it'd be a perfect time to move on from console where all my friends are back to PC since I sold my previous build.
Main Component Explanations
GPU: I initially wanted a RX 5700 XT as my GPU but the AIB variants are out of stock everywhere and I just lost my patience. I decided to go with the RTX 2070 after finding it for a clearance price close to the 5700 XT's price after rebates (which I filled and sent out already). Luckily I'm getting RTX with it which I can't wait to try out on future titles such as Watch Dogs: Legion, Cyberpunk 2077, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. Plus NVidia cards are known to be cooler and quieter anyway so that should help with the absence of my original plan of cooling both the GPU and CPU.
Fans: I got Fractal Design Silent Series R3 fans with hopes of upgrading to Noctua down the line by attaching Halo Lux's for the RGB component, however; neither the 140mm or 120mm fans would fit up top with the Halo Lux attached on to it, so I just went out and found Deepcool fans as a last resort option. So far they've been working really well, and they match the case fans on the brand new Phanteks P400A.
Case: So because I'm not placing my case on my desk, the only visible part for me is the top and front so I wanted a case that has a nice front look with RGB. I didn't go with the Meshify C because RGB fans on the front have a weird look for me personally, and I didn't want a glass front because I wanted to maximize airflow -- thankfully the P400A released around the time I was ready to start my build. The case was a lot smaller than I thought, since my motherboard sticks out too much, I couldn't install the 140mm fans. I'm sure if you go with a cheaper x570 board the smaller VRM's and absence of some pins at the top would allow you to fit 140mm fans. My main complaint with the case is you can't mount a radiator at the top. Because of this, I'm planning to get a rear 120mm AIO cooler down the line, a NZXT G12 and switching my Kraken X72 to liquid cool my GPU instead if I want to OC. Airflow is good, and cable management is great so no complaints here although I would've loved to see a front panel USB Type-C port, an included vertical GPU mount, and some sound dampening material if they're planning to do a refresh such as a P400SA kind of case, but top radiator support would've really made this the perfect case since it's so cheap and looks amazing.
MOBO: I know what you're thinking... Why on earth would you spend $400 CAD (~$300 USD) on a MOBO? Well, thankfully it was on sale... But don't get me wrong, I wanted either an Aorus Elite or TUF Gaming but I needed 2 ARGB ports to have all 6 RGB fans running through the motherboard. Sure I could've went with those and gotten a ARGB fan controller but I wanted my 1st RGB build to be easy. I also heard Fusion has many problems anyways, and so far AURA hasn't given me any major problems. Besides, I enjoyed the higher quality VRM's for OC'ing, and all the other little features it comes with. Why not X470 then? I'd be looking to take advantage of PCIe 4.0 next year so I'd be selling my RTX 2070 regardless (which is why I didn't go for a cheaper board to put towards a better GPU), as well as get a 4th gen M.2 drive down the line when they're cheaper, so I'd rather not go through the hassle of doing a BIOS flashback since future proofing was my priority anyway. I don't mind if DDR5 releases next year anyway, some people are still running DDR3 today and are just fine.
Those are the major components that I wanted to explain my reasoning for, everything else is pretty self explanatory and if they're not, feel free to comment below and ask -- I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have especially if you're looking to build something similar or you want my thoughts on a component you're thinking of using. Have a good one!
NOTE: Published temperatures are not exact, only estimates based on observing temperatures while gaming.
This thing is an absolute BEAST! It's not as hot as I thought it would be, performed really well in CPU benchmarks from 3Dmark, and I'd say this is the best CPU you can get on the market since it packs so much value at its price point.
This was my first AMD chip, and it certainly will not be my last!
Absolutely amazing cooler, my 3700X doesn't go anywhere past 55 degrees while gaming, it's quiet, it looks amazing, the CAM software works wonders, and it was so easy to install based on the instructions in the packaging.
My only complaint would be the price point, but you get what you pay for I guess -- would love to see an RGB variant down the line for those SP fans!
I don't know how to feel about this board. It's the starting ASUS X570 board that has 2 ARGB ports which was the only reason I got it, and even though I got it $40 CAD cheaper than its original price at $399, sometimes I regret not going with the TUF Gaming and getting an ARGB controller instead which would've saved me about $100 so I have to ask myself were the extra little features worth it? Only time will tell, but overall I'm happy with how it looks because the RGB isn't too flashy and the board looks so nice, I just hope the VRM's and dual M.2 thermal pads will keep things cool.
Luckily though, the BIOS was easy to work with, AURA sync gave me very little problems (installation was a hassle), and it's built really well.
Best RAM on the market, hands down. Looks amazing, and has good timing all at a very good price compared to its competitors.
Note that you might run 2133 MHz out of the box so you'll need to enable XMP in the BIOS to run it at 3200.
Great speeds for a pretty good price, WD really is at the top of the SSD class in terms of value.
Even compared to an NVMe there wasn't a significant difference for me so I'd choose this over one any day since you're limited to M.2 slots. Maybe once Gen 4 NVMe's get a price drop the difference in speed would be significant enough to purchase that instead -- will definitely buy another one of these down the line.
Great card, I didn't get a chance to run any RTX games yet so I'd love to see the support for more games (and it seems like we're getting them). I love that the new drivers increased performance on most games, and improved upon features to compete against AMD's Anti-Lag and FidelityFX so I'd say at the clearance price I got it at ($570 CAD) it was definitely worth the purchase especially since I heard great things about EVGA's customer support.
Surprisingly though, for an Nvidia card, this card runs a lot hotter than I expected considering I'm running such a high airflow setup. I'm looking to potentially replace the thermal paste down the line and potentially liquid cool it so I'll update my review then to see if there's any difference.
Good airflow, amazing cable management, easy to build in. Unfortunately it doesn't come with a fan hub with everything pre-wired to it like the H510i and H510 Elite does but the airflow and price point it's at compared to those swayed me towards Phanteks.
Top radiator support would make this the perfect case and would blow the Meshify C out of the water, but I specifically went with this because of the front panel look but previous P400 models never had it and I don't think it'd be possible without a new series of cases.
Realistically though, a front USB-C port, included vertical GPU mount, and sound dampening material (P400SA maybe?) would really make Fractal Design sweat on the next refresh of the P series.
Absolutely love this PSU, the amount of value it brings at its price point compared to its competitors goes beyond all of them especially if you can get it on a sale like I did. I specifically went with this because I wanted the CableMod C-Series cables and not regular extensions just to make my life easier and it worked well!
My only complaints would be it's a little hard to insert and remove cables compared to EVGA PSU's I've worked with before, it doesn't quite have that snap or click if you're using the included cables but I didn't have this issue when using CableMod cables. Also, a "ECO" mode button at the back would be a nice addition for the future.
Picked up these bad boys on sale for $50 CAD as a last minute purchase and I can say I'm pretty happy with them. They're half the price of other 3-in-1 RGB fan kits and for good reason -- they don't perform nearly as well as Corsair's for example but I didn't want to pay double the price and be forced to adjust RGB through iCUE.
If your case has the space and you have the money with RGB in mind, Noctua fans with Halo Lux's attached to them would be the absolute dream in terms of airflow and looks.
This was a last minute buy and had no time to research this since Canada Computers was just about to close and I was desperate on getting extra PWM slots for my fans since my MOBO didn't have enough.
All I can say is WOW! $20 CAD for 10 PWM fan connectors? I love the mounting process, it's just double sided adhesive on a velcro strap and once you mount it you can take the hub on and off the velcro. Connecting it was easy, just plugged the main cable into a CPU fan header (system fans header also works) as instructed on the manual, and is powered by SATA so you don't have to worry about supply power to all 10 fans.
Downside is you need PWM supported fans otherwise it'll run at full speed, and you can't change the speed of each individual fan, so if those features are important to you, I'd say go with Corsair's Commander.
After installing these for the first time, I can say I am NEVER going back to stock cables. Easy to cable manage, easy to bend, makes your build look 10x better, and the quality is outstanding on CableMod's cables.
The price is a bit hefty ($75 CAD for full length kits), but you can grab $40 basic cable kits which are all I used on VLCanada if you're lucky enough to find them in stock. Alternatively you can go with another brand or just buy their extensions but I'd recommend the full kits just because it's easier to cable manage.