This is my third commissioned build for family and friends. The owner of this machine was using an aging MacBook for gaming and the number of cross-platform games a group of us owned were far and few between - Left 4 Dead 2 was the most commonly played one, but when it stopped working on her Mac and Steam didn't help it was time for an upgrade.
This was a mid-level gaming build, with the most demanding game probably being GTA V. I went for a 240GB SSD for boot, GTA, and a few other games, and a large 2TB HDD for the rest of the steam library. An X4 860k was reccomended to me, as was the Seasonic CPU (as I tended to prefer Corsair's CX-series which I have since learned are now classed as a tier 4 PSU). The R9 380X should keep her going for a while (the X was on offer compared to the 380 which is why I went for it, same as the RAM which is why I bought 2133 as it was cheaper than same brand slower RAM). The case is the SPEC-03, this time in Orange (I have used it in Blue and Red as well) which this time came with two coloured fans instead of one as I had previously. Parts were rounded off with a CD/DVD drive I had spare, a TP-LINK PCI wireless card, and, as the motherboard didn't have a USB3 header (something I forgot about until the board arrive) a USB 3>2 header cable.
The CPU is a perfectly good chip - seems to run very well. As this is not going to be overclocked and due to the budget I chose to stick with the stock cooler. In hindsight I would have maybe gone with a quieter cooler.
Motherboard is a bit of a disspointment, if I'm honest. It's in and it works fine, however, there are only two onboard fan headers (one CPU, one Chassis) and the front panel connectors are directly in line and below the dual-slot GPU. This took some effort to get correct and tidy. It's quite a small board and only 2 RAM slots.
The RAM is Corsair Vengeance Pro 8GB - I think 8GB is fine for most desktops now. As mentioned this was on offer and was cheaper than slower RAM so if the machine is upgraded in the future that will be an advantage.
SSD is a Hynix 250GB Drive. I have only used Hynix RAM before, but I am fully impressed with this - a sub £50 250GB SSD.
HDD is a Barracuda 2TB drive - a typical large-storage, reliable workhorse I have a few of.
GPU is a XFX Radeon R9 390X 4GB. This was bought, delivered and installed two days before AMD announced the released of the RX480. It has performed well in Benchmarks, doing surprisingly well in the 3DMark Fire Strike test and should be a solid card for use.
PSU is a fully modular Seasonic power supply. This was my first Seasonic and first fully modular PSU and safe to say I am converted. This is a great PSU for the money and I plan to use these in any future builds.
Case is the Corsair SPEC-03 in Orange (hence the name). This is the third time I have used this case and I am a fan for the excellent cable management it offers. This time I had two fans in the front so I moved one to the rear to provide intake and fresh air to the CPU. The tool-less SSD, HDD, and Optical Drive install are welcome, however getting the front panel off can be a bit tricky. Looks may not be for everybody, but I like it - it's large enough inside for expansion.
Wifi card/CD/DVD Drive - spares already had. They work.
Monitor - actually yet to test as I will unbox this when setting up at the owners the first time.
Overall I'm quite happy with this. If I was going to build this again I'd use a different motherboard, but I'm pretty happy for the money.
Good, all-rounder chip. Stock cooler is noisy.
Poor layout means front panel headers stuck under GPU. Only two on board fan headers. Better options for boards this size.
Good, fast RAM. Does the job nicely and not as large heatsinks as other RAM.
An excellent card - too bad I bought this two days before the announcement of the RX480.
I love these cases, nothing more to say. Plenty of space for expansion, bottom mounted PSU, and the colours make it look even better.
Excellent value fully modular PSU.