Description

I'm an AMD girl from way back. My first machine was with their first generation Athlon cpu's. Last machine was an FX-4100 (Zambizi), which did a great job actually. But again, being pushed to upgrade to windows 10 assured I'd have to build new though so here I am.

I needed a new machine being the last one was built 8 years ago and the case was even older than that (Chieftec tower!)

I build work machines. I don't do it for a living but having learned from taking a part a Packard Bell I had because no one would fix it for me. Oh the days of blazing fast 4mb memory!!

Also as a woman you go into a store and I swear the sales people think they can just sell you anything. Last time I went to best buy was to buy a replacement power supply. They tried to sell me a whole machine. (dumb asses!) I wasn't very polite and told them I've been tinkering with this **** longer than they've been alive and all I needed was a power supply and not a bunch of ********.

I don't game so was actually daunting to find so much RGB all over everything. So instead of using my normal method of building (searching through lots of stuff, keeping an excel file blah blah blah) I found this place thanks to reddit.

So for the past year I watched to see what AMD was going to do with the Ryzen line. Love that they have the best value/money and given I have a soft spot,and, I wasn't going to go to the thread ripper lineup (to rich for my blood at the moment and I'm not wanting to water cool) But I also remember thinking AMD was really ahead of their time, and there was a definite need for boards and peripherals to catch up.

So when the Ryzen 7 gen2 lineup came out, it just seemed to be the right time. I got the 2700x because I really don't ever want to overclock. Again, great value considering what Intel charges, and if given enough space, in the case and the right type of cooling setup, the chip can and will run relatively cool. The Ryzen came with a stock heatsink which sorry but it was just a no...sooooo much RGB!!

So, I went with BeQuiet Massive Dark Rock Pro. That of course meant I had to use low profile memory and Corsair Vengeance LPX fit the bill, plus, no RGB!

The old machine was DDR3. I spent a bundle on it! Far as that goes, it still works and that machine will still be put to use. That board is a Asus M5A78L-M. So that stock cooler did indeed fit that board without any modifications, and thankfully the case is semi closed (it does have one acrylic window)

Having settled on that, the next was to find a mobo that RGB didn't throw up all over or didn't make me look like I was going through a 2nd Mid Life Crisis. In comes the MSI x470 board. My other machine used Asus, but looking at some reviews it seems they were slipping and MSI seemed to be rock solid in terms of their bios and build. I've used MSI in the past without issue so, figured why not.

This board has all that I want without too much RGB. Thankfully its black and the small strip of lights are minimal and can be turned off. Would not want to be mistaken for having a disco in my case!

I also like that the mobo has things spread out.

Next up the case. This was the hardest for me because I need form and function. I spent a bundle on the Chieftec Case back in 2004 as it was custom painted by CaseArts, and I just can't do an ugly case.... But I needed one that I could build in reasonably.

I looked at be Quiet cases and also Deep Silence. Why Deep Silence dosen't have more people talking about them is interesting. be Quiet cases appeared to compromise airflow, and as I was air cooling that was something I didn't want to compromise on for the sake of quiet. Then I looked at Phantecks because they had quiet the following. The cases are nice, I can see why (though not always totally practical!)

Settled on Phantecks Enthoo Luxe for 2 reasons. Its a down right lovely case. The RGB is subtle and grownup, and really highlights what a nice case it really is. OMG the case management is Really really awesome. Airflow is amazing here. And its black, I'm good with black.

Next the fans. That was a big contention and high on the list with me since I work from home and can be in lots of conference calls. (a few people asked me what that noise was...lol it was my case fans!!)

Speaking of air-cooling, I didn't realize quite the fan war had started since I last built! so it was interesting to read about who had the best fans and my goodness the prices!! I settled on Noctua NFp14's because they seem to be decently value priced but also still quiet.

I also ended up getting new fans for the other machine as well 80mm Noctua's and my goodness, the difference was really night and day. In fact my keyboard is the noisiest thing on either build now!

The case itself came with three fans. (they're not that good though) so what I did was use Noctua in the front and rear, and for venting through the top, use the stock case fans.

In the storage wars I knew I would go with an M.2 onboard. Last I left it, it was regular SATA SSD's. Then of course came the M.2 SATAs. now there's some seriously fast stuff out there. I picked Crucial P1 because frankly, they're nice. They're kinda inexpensive especially when you look at the Samsung ones. And frankly, I have several long-term storage options already in my network on Raid 5, which means, unless the entire world ended, I'd be able to recover my stuff. I know people may poopoo because of endurance, but I have a feeling they're probably plenty rugged enough except for in the most trying number crunching conditions. I crunch through tons of data but at least for 5 years, I should be fine.

And I do have an older SanDisk Extreme Pro that as a backup (though not totally connected...you know, as a just in case if I need to reinstall the OS.

I don't store much of anything on the C drive unless I'm immediately working on it. (generally that means my test bed databases and a few other applications. But I do need fast and being I can have LOTS of applications windows open at once, I needed big. So, I went with a 1TB drive to get what I needed. So far its been very nice! No hiccups and the drive is nice and snappy.

Which brings me to the next thing, the GPU.

The GPU is where I'm a bit wobbly. This one has been OK and since I came from a 2GB card to 8 I get nice clean text on the screen. However, certain applications (mainly Adobe) give this card some fits. I do choke up when using adobe apps and I use them a lot. I'm considering getting a NVDIA card for that type of work. I may also have to go a bit higher end as well, time will tell as the system isn't even a month old yet.

The power supply, I went with BitFenix Whisper M not entirely based on reputation but also on price (was under 100 bucks!) I dont need platinum, gold is fine enough, and it more than meets the need on the amount of overhead on this box.

The monitor is from my previous build. No need to kill it off if I don't have to right?

Oh and I really don't like windows 10. I have the pro version (not sure why its showing home??) but meh, its windows. It dosen't always work very well with my keyboard.

The keyboard I use is a IBM Model M (clicky-board) which as a touch typist from the old world and having learned on the old mechanical machines, a keyboard thats responsive and won't break is a necessity) Of course it dosen't match the all back case but hey, gotta have it. I'll take pride in the sickly beige/grey coloring as long as the damn thing continues to work!

Part Reviews

CPU

I'm an AMD girl. I was gonna get an AMD for my next processor no matter what. I waited for Ryzen to mature a bit so when these came out, I went for it. Works very well under load without any hiccups, but then again I'm not exactly overclocking either.

CPU Cooler

MASSIVE but so so quiet! Very easy to adapt to AM4 boards. Bonus points for no RGB.

Thermal Compound

I've always used this stuff for builds from way back. Why stop using what works?

Motherboard

Though I didn't build a gaming machine, this still works for workstations. Its got enough of what you need plus, allowing for proper airflow between parts (gpu,cpu, etc) With the type of giant cooler that I have, always best to use a low profile memory.

Case

This case is straight up sexy! Its the best combination of form/function as a grownup workstation. Subtle RBG but that also allows this case to keep its sexy. Amazing cable management, Lots of ties, grommets, a PSU basement, and its adaptable. I don't exactly want to use a lot of hard drives in there but I could if I wanted to. Or, maybe someday do a custom water cooling loop...maybe.

Case Fan

amazingly quiet. Using three in my case and its amazing how my keyboard is much louder than my fans are!

Comments

  • 11 months ago
  • 4 points

Dog crate but no doggo, 0/10. 10/10 on the build though.

  • 11 months ago
  • 2 points

The office manager was out to lunch when these pics were taken...lol

  • 11 months ago
  • 3 points

$2000 build, <$175 GPU. Somehow still better than my deep fried potato of a rig.

  • 11 months ago
  • 0 points

LOL I'm sure probably not. But thank you for the compliment! I'm thinking I may wait to see if there are updates for the GPU if I can. Otherwise, I might have to go to the darkside and get NVDIA. I wish Adobe would just get their act together though... (might as well be asking for gold bricks tho...lol)

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

As for my machine, I'm running a Ryzen 3 2200g with an RX 460, so yes, your rig is better. As far as up and coming gpus, I hear and will have some new cards at CES, so I'd wait until then.

  • 10 months ago
  • 0 points

Vega cards are great value

  • 11 months ago
  • 2 points

Very nice, always good to read about a non-gaming build. I looked at Nanoxia myself but ended up with a Fractal Design Define R6. I'm surprised you have issues with the GPU but then I don't do much Adobe myself (and when I do it's usually on the old iMac.)

and yeah, slap down those cave man sales types. Geez, you'd think we're still in the Dark Ages.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I looked at Fractal Design cases but, I admittedly still have a optical drive that I may very well move from the old machine (if it works with windows 10 that is!) If not, I still will one day get one anyway.

The GPU is generally OK outside of Adobe suite, but there's a pretty marked difference when I'm using these apps. Absolutely faster than my previous card but, can be choppy for some apps like after effects and premier pro. (I have to do a lot of instructional videos)

I have a huge iMac that I bought years ago but now is just too old to update the OS. I let guests use that one...lol I figure they won't damage it too much.

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  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! Thats the older Chieftec Case that CaseArts painted. Sad that I couldn't fit my newer GPU in it, but its still a pretty nifty case!