Description

The Backstory

I've been following the PC scene for a while, but while this might not be the best build ever, it certainly made a new impression on me.

Long story short, I needed something new after living the lie that was OS X. Only a couple months ago, I had to work with the pain that were our family Late 2009 iMac and 2012 Macbook Pro. Currently, the 2009 iMac is virtually unusable, (And I mean, like 2 minute long load times when logging in) and the Macbook is much better, but not by much. WoT can only run at a usable framerate at the standard renderer, and turning on AA instantly halves the framerate. So, after the green light for a venture into PC building, I started outsourcing my first ever build. I started with a February build guide, but turned out replacing everything but the GPU. I took the back half of my Spring break to build everything, and after some pretty long nights, I held beauty and outspoken proud from my relatives. It turned out to be as awesome as I thought it would be.

Post-Mortem

Before I start, I have to say I'm definitely impressed with the CPU temps. Even after several hours on Aida64, the CPU still runs solid on the stock cooler. I'd definitely want to take it further, but I have no idea where to take the voltage at. The GPU although is another question. As others have pointed out, it only runs at a maximum of 62 C. This isn't helped though by the fact that the stock fan support is completely screwed. Without any manual fan curve, the GPU fan runs at only 10% . This meant that I had to make a completely new fan curve with PrecisionX 16, but that also introduced me to GPU overclocking. It didn't help though that PrecisionX completely breaks when I close it. That really broke me when it came to several hours of not knowing what's screwing performance, so I don't think I'll be buying EVGA products in the future. Oh yeah, I also used a USB 3.0 WiFi adapter because the PCi card slot was blocked by the GPU. Really loving the adapter though, it's maxing out the 70 Mbps WiFi we have. So what's the actual performance. I turned out I didn't really have the budget for some new Steam games, so I only have some demo Fire Strike scores. And that turned to be all I have, so I hope I can get some feedback on this build. I'll definitely be excited when I get some new games from the summer Steam sale!

Part Reviews

CPU

While the CPU doesn't perform the best, the stock cooler can definetly overclock to the turbo 4.1 Ghz speed.

Storage

Amazing HDD, definetly would get for the amazing value it is.

Video Card

The GPU definetly delivers, but EVGA software is a pain. The 60 C bottleneck hurts, and my fan would run at 10% without a manual fan curve.

Case

The case works, but the lack of any cable management space or manual definitely hurt me as a first time builder. Make sure you do your research on this case and buy a modular PSU if you plan to get this case. Would also recommend replacing the intake fan.

Wireless Network Adapter

Amazing WiFi adapter. My PCi slot was blocked by my GPU, so I had to go with a USB WiFi adapter. Works perfectly with 70 Mbps WiFi.

Comments

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Very good for your first build +1

I play Wot too, it's my favorite :D

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, you really need a PC to run WoT with. (I am currently debating whether to buy more Premium time... that's a whole 'nother issue though.) You'll need to clean up the cable management before the Cable Management Police get here (given your cell phone pics of the system, they might not be able to tell anything. Good move on your part!) and you might want to give some thought to getting something like a Hyper 212 EVO to replace the stock cooler, just to cut down the noise. Other commenters might have questions about the long term durability of the XFX power supply you installed; the power supply isn't really a place to cheap out on a build. I'm not sure about EVGA's card software (never installed it) but my 960 is an ASUS Strix board and it runs quiet even when the fans ramp up; maybe your board has a corrupted BIOS or something? Hey, at least it's a Team Red build; I'll +1 you for that.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Some good points but the psu is gucci tier one or two on toms hardware list of psu's (I think there is a chance I'm wrong) Well balanced build tho dude hope you enjoy it!!

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice first build. I would have gotten windows 7 instead, since it has a free upgrade to 10 and is about 30 bux cheaper. You could have gotten a 960 with the savings. Also should at least use 2x4gb ram instead of one 8gb stick to get the benefit of dual channel.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

I thought when you upgrade to windows 10, you have to pay the upgrade fee aka full price, 1 year after the upgrade.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Gonna use this gj

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Are you not interested in using Freesync? Using a 950 with the best budget freesync monitor doesn't make much sense to me.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

I was just looking for a monitor that could go above 60 Hz.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

How many FPS do you get with the 950? What he's saying is that until you have a GPU can go past 60 FPS by a noticeable margin, you aren't getting much benefit from the higher refresh rate you paid good money for.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

+1 Team RED!

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Dude, you bought a freesync monitor when you have a Nvidia graphics card? I AM CONFUSED!!!