Description

First of all, sorry for the potato pictures, I will try to get some better ones soon.

The name, Pho3nix, is partially inspired by the name of the motherboard, and partially inspired by CS:GO's Operation Pho3nix.

So it's been a while since I built this PC but with high school and everything, I haven't had much time to sit down and give you all a nice writeup.

3D Mark Firestrike - 9975 (want to get 10k!)

I built this PC when I was 13, though I am 14 now. Some backstory:

I originally had a white MacBook from ~2009. I saved up for the summer in order to build this, by doing jobs such as babysitting, tutoring, mowing lawns, etc. At first, my parents were not on board with this idea, instead recommending that I get a MacBook Air, but a 1500 word persuasive essay dealt with that.

I custom made the GPU backplate with a sheet of polycarbonate which I plasti-dipped black, and some vinyl stickers.

I mainly use this computer to do schoolwork, edit videos/photos, play games such as CS:GO, Rocket League, PlanetSide 2, and Borderlands 2 CAD and programming.

To-Do List:

-10000 on FireStrike via Overclocking

-CPU Cooler (Cryorig M9i?) Intel cooler is LOUD.

-Exhaust Fan

-500GB SSD

-144Hz FreeSync Monitor

-Orange Sleeved Cables

Part Reviews

CPU

It's what you would expect. 4 cores, 4 threads, 3.3-3.5 Ghz. Not much else to say.

Oh yeah it's the minimum spec for VR if I can ever afford that.

Motherboard

Great ITX motherboard. It has all of the features I needed. It has Wifi and it's pretty good. Orange color scheme looks nice as well.

Memory

16GB of RAM that matches my color scheme. Low profile heat spreader (34-35mm) so it should work with most CPU coolers, even those that overhang the DIMM slots.

Storage

It's not a 950 Pro, but it gets the job done for an attractive price. I wouldn't recommend anything less than 120-128GB for an SSD.

Storage

Found it in a cabinet. Not that fast but you can't beat free.

Video Card

Fast, quiet, and sexy. What else do you need?

Case

For an ITX case, it's really big. I don't mind this because it means that I could fit an 11.6 inch GPU in it. I honestly didn't expect this kind of quality from a sub-$70 case. The power LED is white, which makes it very neutral (as opposed to the blue a lot of cases have. I'm looking at you, Fractal).

Power Supply

Bought it from a friend for $20. I wish the cables were flat, but it wasn't too hard to deal with them. The "Eco Mode" makes it semi fanless, but I can't hear the fan when it's on. I opted to have the "Eco Mode" off to keep the temps lower. I would pay full price for this, it's one of the best PSUs you can get. However it's really long, a tight squeeze in my case.

Operating System

Didn't have much of a choice.

Monitor

It's small, and it's TN. The colors aren't the greatest, and they get severely washed out if you're looking at it from more than 45 degrees. However I look at it straight on and it works for me. I'm going to get a 144Hz 1080p monitor once I have the money.

Keyboard

Mechanical keyboard. Love the MX Browns. It also comes with pre-installed O-rings which makes it a bit quieter. The orange accent matched my build, and the white LEDs are much better than RGB madness.

Mouse

Most people wouldn't like it because of its shape, but it fits my small hand surprisingly well. It's really light, perfect for the flicks in CS:GO. And the RGB LEDs are implemented tastefully, not too intrusive.

Comments

  • 39 months ago
  • 4 points

R9 290 TRI-X from Sapphire + Thermaltake Orange RIINGS + Orange Sleeved PSU Cables and a orange painted letter EVGA PSU would be the dream for this. All in all I like your color coordination, its unique +1!

  • 39 months ago
  • 3 points

Thanks man! It means a lot. I was originally going to get the Tri-X however it was sold out when I wanted to buy parts. Sleeved cables is next on my list. I had not heard of Riing fans but they look awesome! Thanks for the suggestion.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Nice build. Good on you for saving up on your own! +1

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks!

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

My parents seem to think that a mac is the only good type of computer and I recently persuaded them to let me get a pc. We seem to have a similar taste in games and I was wondering If there was anything you would change about the pc? ( I was thinking about using these same parts)

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

Hey, its been a while since I've been on this site, so sorry for the late reply. I would recommend upgrading to the latest Intel CPU's (Skylake, probably the i5-6500), and with that you would get a different motherboard and RAM as well. Then I would wait for the GTX 1070 or AMD Polaris/Vega which should be coming out later this year, so you have the latest graphics will be SO much better.

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

I am your age and I am making this : http://pcpartpicker.com/user/HyperYveltal16/saved/nDj323

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice.

But i would have gotten a 4460, as it performs pretty much the same and is cheaper. Unless you are dead-set on VR.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

I had no idea about VR specs when I built this (July 2015), but the 4460 was not available at microcenter when I bought it. So I went for the 4590 since it was only about 10 dollars more and had a nice boost in clock speed. Thanks for looking!

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

wow cool build.

*reads the title

OH **** A 13 YEAR OLD DAMN GIVE THIS KID A GRAMMY OH MY GOD SOMEONE GET THE CAMERA

but seriously, cool build

+1

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thank you.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

What an achievement at such a young age! You should be very proud, also your parents. WELL DONE!!!

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks!

  • 39 months ago
  • -1 points

young age? it's basically adult legos haha. Not hard to do at all.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

I certainly found out it's not that hard, but I wouldn't have done it at 13. So hats off to you!

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Very nice. I like your build.

Thumbs up.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thank you.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Some pretty high aspirations there for the future. Great build! Cryorig makes some pretty neat coolers so +1 for thinking about them, as well as the case choice! EVOLV chassis are always cool looking :D

  • 39 months ago
  • 3 points

Thanks! I really like the look of Cryorig's coolers, they go a good job with aesthetics. IMO nickel plated heat pipes and a cover plate looks waaaaaay better than bare copper and nothing at the top (aka Hyper 212).

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Very nice, you've got a distinctive and clean looking build. Those parts should give you very good performance for their price.

At first my parents were not on board with this idea, instead recommending that I get a MacBook Air, but a 1500 word persuasive essay dealt with that.

Wise choice there ;)

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks man! I was honestly done with OSX because a lot of programs were poorly supported. I'm happy with my decision.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Great build, but you should have gotten the Kingston HyperX Cloud at that price instead of the Steelseries.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks. I got the headset as a Christmas present, so I'm not going to complain too much ;)

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice job, I do have one suggestion though. FANS especially a rear exhaust fan and probally a few more at the top where you have room, Put two fans in the top as intake, and one rear exhaust fan and you will be set and keeping it all cool with a good supply of fresh air. This way you can put to bed all the worries about your custom backplate.

BitFenix makes some cool orange LED fans that will make this beastie come alive withg orange goodness and provide you with much better case airflow.

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Yes that is my top priority along with a better CPU cooler because the case's airflow isn't the best with the single 200mm fan. The main problem is that my motherboard only has one CPU FAN header and one SYS FAN header. Do you have any recommendations for a splitter?

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Sent you a private with a link for your fan question.

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build. What kind of parents think that a mac is the only good type of computer. Macs are the worst kind of computers, for the same price you can get computer 12x better.

  • 27 months ago
  • 1 point

all good but more 500GB would be nice... looks good

  • 22 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the comment! I updated it with a 525GB SSD.

[comment deleted]
  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Cheers!

[comment deleted]
  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

It was getting hot before, but I then raised it off of the PCB by about 7mm. I have done stress tests with it on and off, it gains about 1 degree C with it on. Within margin of error. The picture was taken before I raised it.

[comment deleted]
  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks! I'm really happy with how it turned out.