Description

Build Date: 09APR2016

Request came from a fairly knowledgeable college student who wanted to break free of the console gaming chains and become glorious. He basically priced the build himself and then I made a few tweaks and then I drove to his house and taught/helped him how to piece everything together.

Pros:

  • Sub $1000
  • 250GB SSD
  • GTX 970
  • I5

Cons:

  • No overclocking support
  • No Data drive
  • No future SLI

Notes: Budget builds are BUDGET builds. I have to make the best machine for it's intended purpose while maintaining the budget. For this build, the customer had already picked out most of what he wanted with his own budget in mind which was around the $950 mark. The final build ended up being $949.77 at the time of the build. It's always fun to help people build their first build. I love it, the customer loves it. Since the pictures, I gave the customer a spare 120mm Red LED fan from a prior build.

PS: Sorry for the crappy pictures.. As I said before.. It's always weird pulling out my phone in somebodies home.

Comments

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build, good choices and good punch for the price.

Only items I would change:

B150M night elf would have supplemented colour scheme and offers crossfire support. Not sure mortar offers same support?

Gone for R9 390 8gb to offer that crossfire option in the future.

Saying that you end up with my something close to my daily driver (not biased really ;-) )

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

I tried to convince him to go with the 390, but he was dead set on Nvidia. I only run Nvidia in my personal machines, so it's hard for me to push the subject too hard.. Lol

Also, I don't think the Night Elf is available in the states? At least, I didn't see it when picking out parts. Will look for it in the future though. Thanks for the suggestion.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

So, curiosity is hitting me. You say a customer. So, did you charge him for the help of the build?

  • 45 months ago
  • 2 points

I do charge to build PCs. Most of the time I build them myself without any intervention from the customer but in some cases, people are very eager to learn and I happily oblige since I am very passionate about my hobbies and consider myself to be a very good teacher/coach.

In this case, the "customer" was a college student who had done quite a bit of solid research on the computer he wanted. I trimmed his build down about $100 to get him to his target budget without any noticeable performance loss.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Ahhh, okay .^ I might be helping a friend with a pc. Idk when, but I am sure I will be soon. I built mine, and loved doing it.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Any particular reason for going with that motherboard?

How's building inside the SPEC-02?

And... how much do you tend to charge your customers? (just looking to get an idea on the price of labor).

  • 45 months ago
  • 2 points

It's a good board for what the customer wanted/needed and it was combo'd up with the i5 6500 which was the primary reason.

As for the Corsair Spec 01/02/03. I love them. They are my "go to" cases. For the money, they are great. They don't have a lot of room for cable management so if you have a big PSU or a non modular you will have to be very creative.

I charge $50 to build a computer and I don't charge markup on parts/shipping. I do charge more for computers that take more time. IE: custom loops or custom mods. Hope that helps.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

If the B150 Mortar didn't come with the combo, would y'all have settled for an H110 or a cheaper B150? I've found it difficult to settle on any mid-level mobo since the 'lower'-end boards are worth the cost-savings and usually offer the same features. If I'd use a higher-end board, it usually only makes sense to jump to a Z170 at the $90-110 range. The boards in between don't make sense (excluding various discounts), but I'm open to your feedback.

The SPECs do look fun. Question about airflow: do you think the case needs a rear exhaust fan?

Thanks for the info, Khaosix. I love researching the PC market as well as building them, so I figure I may as well make some money on the side.

  • 45 months ago
  • 2 points

If you look at my other builds, I am quite the fan of the H110m. Especially paired up with the i3-6100. It is probably my favorite mid-budget set up right now. So to answer your question; yes I would have absolutely gone with the H110m if the Mortar wasn't only $3 more at the time of purchase.

As for boards "in between". The only time I really spring for them is for future crossfire support on the H170/B150 boards where somebody doesn't want to overclock. IE: i5-6500 with a single 390 with the future option of a second 390. Other than that, there is little reason(there is some) to go with an "in between" board as you said(excluding discounts/sales).

I would definitely put an exhaust fan in the rear especially with a tower cooler. A little extra air flow never hurt anybody. I should have added in the description, but when I gave the customer the extra LED fan for the front, I also gave him a plain 120mm for the rear. But his temps were fine without it.

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Excellent. Thanks for info. May joy and money find you on your path of PC building. :)

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Have looked at a few of your builds and you do very good work! Sorry to hijack the thread, but your comment above regarding the H170/B150 boards got me thinking. I have an i5-6500 and plan on building later this month. Got a decent deal at the time so just grabbed it. I do not plan on future crossfire/SLI, but most feedback I have received is to spend the extra few bucks and get a Z170-A or Z170-P instead of an H170/B150.

Now I am new to building and have only been doing serious research for the last couple months or so. Would it be smart to drop down to a cheaper MOBO that still supports DDR4, just at 2133 instead of 2400+? It isn't a huge price difference, but could be enough to allow me to get the 380X in comparison to just the 380. Thoughts?

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the compliment. I really enjoy building computers for my customers.

If it's only a "few extra bucks" for a Z170 then go for it. But unless you get a crazy awesome deal, the B150 is going to be significantly cheaper and since you aren't going to overclock or SLI/Crossfire then you should definitely go with a the B150 or even the H110m. Look at the features on those boards and figure out what you want/need and then decide.

Don't worry about RAM Speed.. Go with 2133Mhz unless faster memory is cheaper/same price. Faster memory does nothing for gaming.

Hopefully you can save enough money and you can spring for the R9 390 instead of the 380x. While the 380X is clearly better than the R9 380.. The 390 is in an entirely different class and is only about $30-40 more than the 380x.

If you have any more questions or want my opinion on anything, please feel free to shoot me a private message!